Cryptozoic Entertainment interviewed Micky Neilson and James Waugh to learn more about the process of developing canon stories based on StarCraft and Warcraft which came to life in the Tokyopop mangas.

With the shutdown of Tokyopop (California campus), Cryptozoic obtained the rights to all the Warcraft and StarCraft manga and you can now get them as a digital download via your iPad.

Here is an excerpt from the interview to get you going.

Q: Is manga content considered official canon for StarCraft and Warcraft?

Micky: Yes! We made that decision early on, that it was important for readers to feel like they were experiencing stories that were relevant, that could actually have an impact on the franchise. It was also a great opportunity for us to tell stories that expanded the lore in ways we might not be able to otherwise.

James: Most definitely! These stories are essential canon. One of the terrific things about this content was that it allowed us to nail down and codify elements of the IPs in ways we hadn’t before. Linear narratives focus on characters and demand different stories than game narratives, and this process ultimately forced the developers to ask new questions and figure out portions of the IP that they never had before. The Shaman manga is a prime example of that. It really helped Blizzard figure out exactly how shaman fit into the world outside of the context of game mechanics.

There are a few awesome “reveal” moments on top of the whole uber awesomeness (sorry, Waugh — It’s trademarked but I will borrow it) that is the Cryptozoic interview with both loremakers:

  • More Colin Phash spotlight in the future (in-game or writer media?)
  • Some StarCraft: Ghost Academy characters (other than Gabriel Tosh) will appear in upcoming StarCraft II episodes (Heart of the Swarm? Legacy of the Void?)
  • Micky Neilson would love to spotlight King Ymiron and the Vrykul race in other media outside the game (Comics, Novels, Manga?)
  • James Waugh confirms the StarCraft Graphic Novel is still in development and on track for release sometime in the future. Says Nova has a role in it.

The interview gave me a nerd thrill, but hearing both of them thank and acknowledge the work of all the manga writers, artists and editors was a nice touch. I often had contact with the editors year-round, interviewed the writers, and met Micky Neilson, Chris Metzen, Rob Tokar (Tokyopop Editor-in-Chief), Richard A. Knaak, Keith R.A. DeCandido, Josh Elder and Grace Randolph at New York Comic Con. I have met Christie Golden at BlizzCon and at Huntington, New York (Long Island). To me those names equal friends with the occasional email, meeting at events, and through the omnipresent fantasy and fiction stories that entertain and touches every fan.

Left to Right: Jaime Costas (Pocket Books), Christie Golden, Medievaldragon, Richard A. Knaak and Rob Tokar

Left to Right: Medievaldragon and Keith R.A. DeCandido

Left to Right: Grace Randolph, Keith R.A. DeCandido, Micky Neilson (Senior Writer & Voice Director), Chris Metzen (Blizzard VP of Creative Design)