Virgin, Sony team for 'Ramayan' game


NEW DELHI -- Bangalore, India-based Virgin Comics and Sony Online Entertainment have pacted for an online gaming property based on Virgin's "Ramayan 3392," itself based on an ancient Sanskrit epic.

The principal promoters of Virgin Comics and its animation affiliate include Virgin chief Richard Branson, director Shekhar Kapur and new age guru/author Deepak Chopra. The "Ramayan" comic was jointly developed by Kapur and Chopra and was released in the U.S. a year ago.

"We are excited about this opportunity to expand this title to the online world where Sony is a major player," Virgin Comics and Virgin Animation president Suresh Seetaraman said in an interview Thursday. "We are currently in the development stage and the game will only be launched in about three years."

Seetaraman said the comic will soon be released in India.

In a statement, SOE president John Smedley said: "We believe in the Indian gaming market, and we're excited to have a fresh take on a property that's thousands of years old."

Virgin Comics recently announced a pact with Mumbai-based Studio 18, part of the new Viacom-18 joint venture to develop feature films based on teen horror comics (HR 5/23).