Even Brandchannel has the wrong impression about Epic Mickey

Spotted this post on Brandchannel about Epic Mickey and read through it and subsequently commented in it. The level of understanding from the non-videogame players out there is appalling and the mass media is perfectly happy to generate controversy by poor journalism and under-reporting.

Disney To Rebrand Mickey Mouse

Posted by Stephanie Startz on November 5, 2009 05:56 PM


Above is the link to the original article. My comment comes in below. Kinda wish I had a reply from the author of the piece or something. To date I’ve had one follow-on comment which said that my comment added perspective on this issue.

Hiya Stephanie (And all the other peeps making comments about Mickey’s supposed ‘rebranding’ of goold ol Mickey),

You guys don’t seem to have the full story about this upcoming game project. The NYT article is blatantly under-researched and a poor excuse for journalism (Mainstream media blatantly misrepresents cantankerous mickey mouse), and definitely shouldn’t be used as a basis for this piece on Mickey’s ‘rebranding’. The NYT article has twisted the announcement of Epic Mickey to mean that Mickey’s character is going to get a whole lot darker and edgier. It’s not.

For starters to give some perspective on this issue, I’ll quote a section from a first look at Epic Mickey by IGN – “It’s that classic 1920’s character that makes a return in Epic Mickey, and Junction Point’s first task was to ensure it could authentically replicate the mouse’s distinctive stretchy movements and capture Mickey’s early essence. The team went as far as recreating key scenes from those early cartoons with Mickey’s in-game model and the results, as presented by Spector at the London launch event, are impressively close to the original. It means that Epic Mickey’s mouse is thoroughly authentic and his character remains at the heart of the game, even as Junction Point rips the rug out with its “whimsically twisted Disney game world”.

Epic Mickey is NOT a departure from Mickey and he’s not being rebranded – Mickey is being taken back to his roots and in this particular game, all the modelling and character basis comes from Mickey’s original incarnation.

Another crucial point that was missed (or more likely glossed over) by the journalist is this – Mickey’s look will change through the game depending on how You, the player, plays it. And apart from the dark, edgy look (known in the game as a ‘Scrapper’) that’s been published everywhere by now, there are another two looks which mainstream press has not covered, the Neutral look, and the Hero look – where Mickey looks bright and erm… heroic.

I guess Miro’s and Augie Ray’s comments are a good indication about the low level of understanding of this project other than what’s been published in the mainstream press.

I’ll leave with a closing quote from the developer – “We want to honour Disney’s creative legacy; there’s 80 years of creativity here; we all know it, we all love it, we all grew up with it. But if we’re going to bring Mickey to an audience that hasn’t really thought about him as a hero for many years we can’t just give people Sleeping Beauty’s Castle and When You Wish upon a Star. We need to come up with something that’s maybe a little more relevant and a little more appealing to a modern audience. We have to give people a new twist on things – take things that are completely familiar to you, we all know them and all love them, and give them a little bit of a dark edge and a difference. We give you the pleasure of familiarity, and then we yank the rug from underneath you.” – Warren Spector

November 12, 2009 08:42 PM # Reply


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