Activision's "X-Men Destiny" will be hitting stores and gamers' hands in less than a week, marking the start of the game publisher's big holiday push and featuring a strong production team at Silicon Knights and the writing talents of "X-Men Legacy" scribe Mike Carey behind it. It's not your typical X-Men adventure, either. Rather than take control of perennial fan-favorites like Wolverine and Cyclops, gamers instead fight battles while controlling three new characters, each with their own motivations and backstory that adds something new to the battle between the X-Men, the Brotherhood and the humans who hate them both with a passion.
With that in mind, CBR presents this guide to the three main characters involved in "X-Men Destiny," as well as the super powers you'll be able to utilize as you fight your way through the game.
Aimi Yoshida: Aimi finds herself in a peculiar situation in the heart of a war-torn San Francisco. Born in Fuji City, Japan, where the uprising against mutants is just as strong as the United States, Aimi's parents feared that she would be imprisoned for carrying mutagenic powers and so smuggled her out of the country into a cargo ship bound for the United States.
When the ship arrived in the San Francisco bay area, Aimi found herself alone, frightened and in a sense, angry with her family (whose fate is currently unknown). As the game opens, Aimi is roughly 16 years old and doesn't fully comprehend why her parents left her alone or what kind of danger mutantkind finds itself in. Rather than hiding, she decides to take her rage out on any enemies who try to destroy her. Over the course of "X-Men Destiny's" story, Aimi will slowly but surely learn her place in the battle and eventually pick a side -- either X-Men or Brotherhood -- that could turn the tide of the war in favor of whoever she aligns with.
Aimi's voice is provided by actor Jamie Chung, who previously appeared in"Sucker Punch" and "Sorority Row." Her next film will be "Premium Rush," an action/thriller which co-stars Joseph Gordon Levitt.
Adrian Luca: Unlike Aimi, Adrian has a full understanding of where he came from and what happened with his family. In fact, it's what drives him. The son of an anti-mutant extremist who fell in battle, it's unknown if Adrian's father was killed by a member of the X-Men or the Brotherhood. All the young man knows is that a mutant did the dirty work, and as part of his father's "Purifier" clan, Adrian vows to set things right and avenge his father -- at any cost.
While a young mutant himself, Adrian's indoctrination in his father's mutant-hating Purifiers has left him filled with hatred for non-homo sapiens and given the Purifiers a powerful weapon in their anti-mutant quest. Adrian's Shadow Matter powers are undeniably strong, which explains why both the X-Men and the Brotherhood have such an interest in turning him to their respective side over the course of the game. Eventually, Adrian will need to come to a decision, one that will decide his fate -- and perhaps that of the "Purifiers" as well.
Adrian's voice is provided by Scott Porter, the actor voicing Cyclops in the "Marvel Anime: X-Men" series and who portrayed Nestor Willow in the SyFy series "Caprica."
Grant Alexander:Grant's peers may be heavily invested in the war between mutants and humans, but Grant Alexander doesn't really see what the big deal is. Born in Sandersville, Georgia, Grant is just another college freshman who's got big dreams -- and big muscles. Seeking a spot on the University of California varsity squad, Grant wants to invest himself in the sports scene and gain a little popularity in the process. When "X-Men Destiny" opens, he simply isn't into the whole homo sapien/superior political scene.
Which is interesting, as he's thrust right into the middle of it, forced to use his brute strength to fight for his life while still containing a bit of hope that after the battle concludes, he can get back to a normal existence. Considering all Grant faces and does in "X-Men Destiny," his goal becomes more and more unlikely with each new battle.
Grant's voicework is provided by Milo Ventimiglia, Peter Petrelli from the NBC series "Heroes" as well as the lead character in "X-Men Anime: Wolverine" and the villain in the movie "Gamer."
That's the background on the game's three main characters -- now, what can they do? Well, aside from combining their chromosomes with existing X-Men characters via X-Genes and X-Modes, their regular, base abilities do a lot of damage as well.
Shadow Matter (Adrian):Shadow Matter not only plays a part in forming an offensive attack, it can be utilized defensively as well. When striking opponents, the Matter forms invisible blades that slice away at anyone in front of you, striking swiftly without weighing down the mutant who's using them. It also enables heightened reflexes for the character, allowing them to strike multiple opponents at once or dish out concentrated damage on someone they're locked on to. If you prefer to escape a fight, you can use Shadow Matter to accelerate your character, running out of a situation or moving quickly through an area, should something unexpected be happening. It's a nice ability to have.
Density Control (Grant): Remember that thick candy shell you poured on ice cream, allowing it to harden to the point where you had to break through it to eat it? Well, Density Control is a little like that -- though not as tasty, and certainly more destructive. Essentially, this power lets you manipulate your mutant's body mass, usually in the form of a hard rock coating. That means you can form huge rock-like boxing gloves surrounding your fists and lower arms, perfect for swatting away bothersome enemies within your reach. But it goes deeper than that. Use Density Control enough and you'll be able to distribute the rock substance around your entire body, covering you completely and rendering you indestructible for several seconds before it crumbles away. This is an ideal power to use when you're surrounded by members of the Brotherhood or need that extra push when it comes to taking on the boss encounters within the game.
Energy Projection (Aimi):Last but definitely not least, there's Energy Projection. Similar in nature to Iron Man's beam attacks, instead of using technology to power them, these use raw mutant strength. You can either fire short, rapid shots to mow down weaker opponents (ideal for when they're charging at you), or switch to more powerful beams should you need to take down someone bigger, like a boss enemy or someone packing a serious amount of armor. Energy blasts can also be detonated like grenades or provide shielding as a defensive tactic.
You can see more of "X-Men: Destiny" and its story unfold when the game ships for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Wii on September 27