Even with the imminent release of Matt Hazard: Blood Bath and Beyond
(and by imminent I mean tomorrow, the 7th), assets are still making their way in. Today, we have a new trailer and two new character profiles for you.
First, I’d like to introduce you to The Scorpion Queen. The mechanical scorpion comes from Hell’s Cowboys, a side-scrolling game set in the old west. We’ll skip the similarity to Will Smith’s Wild Wild West, and get straight to the details. She was created to wipe out San Antonio circa 1834, and stop Jebediah Bedlam from being a hero. Now, General Neutronov has reactivated The Scorpion Queen to send her stampeding Matt Hazard’s way instead. She will be using her cloaking device, which Vicious Cycle Software admits was a last minute addition. Their advice to defeating her? Keep running and throwing grenades.
Who is this sneaky General Neutronov? I’m glad you asked, because he’s the second character profile reveal in today’s news. He’s played multiple roles in the USSR, but was abandoned in favor of more “gentle” game settings after the fall of the Soviet Union. The General took up a contract with Marathon Software, which was followed by multiple castings all as villainous and hefty weapon wielding characters. Still thirsty for Matt’s blood, however, The General doesn’t mind getting this typecast of the Cold War villain.
Scorpion Queen is a Mechanical Scorpion Robot created to originally destroy Jebediah Bedlam in Marathon Megasoft’s Hell’s Cowboys, a 1988 side-scroller set in the old west
: In Marathon Megasoft’s Hell’s Cowboys, Hogg Irons and his band of miscreants, descend on the quiet town of San Antonio in 1834 and use their (limited) knowledge of the future and the modern equipment at their disposal to take over the town. The Scorpion Queen was the gang’s greatest creation. She was created to stop Jebediah Bedlam who was the game’s hero, in fact Bedlam’s only hero role. In present day, Scorpion Queen has been found and reactivated by General Neutronov with the task of stopping Matt Hazard dead in his tracks.
: Scorpion Queen can use her cloaking device to move swiftly around the map. Doing enough damage will help you and hurt you at the same time because she will lose focus on cloaking but dish out more deadly attacks. Try and avoid all of her onslaughts by staying mobile and you should be good.
Scorpion Queen Likes: Being quick on the draw and cloaking.
Scorpion Queen Dislikes: Grenades.
• She was ranked the highest amongst the development teams most liked Boss Battles for Matt Hazard: Blood Bath and Beyond.
• Her cloaking device was an after thought, which turned out to be a major change that we think was for the better.
General Alexei Plutoniovich Neutronov was a highly-decorated Red Army officer who served with distinction in a number of successful games in the USSR prior to the end of the Cold War, including the popular Dissident Evil series.
After the fall of the Soviet Union in 1990, in an attempt to show the kinder gentler side of the people behind the Iron Curtain, most Russian game developers turned their attention away from strong military characters and focused on games involving the intricate effects of gravity on colorful geometric shapes. His contract canceled by his former game company, General Neutronov was forced to seek employment with the “capitalist devils” at Marathon Software.
Neutronov’s timing couldn’t have been better. He was cast as the nuke-toting villain in the budget title Doctor Nyet!, a side-scrolling techno-spy game. His performance was so authentic (scarily so, in fact) that the Marathon executives decided to create a whole series of espionage-inspired titles. And, with the series going high-budget, Marathon could afford to pull in the big guns (as it were) and cast their number-one star in the lead role.
Thunder Eye hit the shelves in early 1992. Despite missing the Christmas season, sales were through the roof. Players enjoyed seeing their favorite hero, Matt Hazard, in a spy game. Moreover, fans and critics alike raved over the ending in which Matt, having dispatched all of Neutronov’s Soviet separatists, lures the General himself to a grisly end that involves two AK-47s; a red, a blue, and a green keycard; and the engine intake of a Soviet MiG-25. (You had to be there.)
The game was so popular that everyone demanded a sequel. Neutronov was brought back to life through a convoluted plot twist and went on to reprise his role as a villain in the aptly-titled You Only Live 1,317 Times—in which he met a similarly uncomfortable end.
Still longing for the glorious days when the Soviet Union was one step from having the resources to think about taking over the world, General Neutronov continues to allow himself to be typecast in the role of the Cold War villain in spy games in hopes that, someday, he will be able to finally defeat his number one enemy, Matt Hazard.