Hey y’all! Rico, your Heroes Creative Director here (I sound like Julie from the Love Boat), to tell you about our HeroesCon exclusive Secret Wars #1 variant cover. Let’s get the business out of the way first. This thing is beautiful and it’s available for pre-order now. Get it HERE.

When Marvel decided to bring back Secret Wars for 2015′s mega crossover event we knew we had to get our friends Mike Zeck and John Beatty involved and tie it all together with their appearance at HeroesCon 2015 (June 19-21). We asked these comics legends to revisit their classic Black Suit Spider-Man cover from Secret Wars #8. Once they agreed Shelton (the boss!), Justin (Store Manager), Seth (Warehouse Manager), and I got to work brainstorming which characters we’d like to appear on the cover. We placed Miles in the center and then worked out from there. This was a LOT of fun for us as you can probably imagine.

The next step was gathering character reference for Mike to work from while getting Marvel approvals along the way. We sent these over to Mike and he quickly finished his “rough” sketch. That’s the one up there that pretty much looks like a finished cover illustration. Whoa! Mike then completes his pencils, approvals again and then it’s over to John Beatty for some silky inks. Beautiful!

Now the cover heads back to us for colors and trade dress. Since we already changed so much from the original, we thought keeping a similar color scheme, the original logo and corner box would finish this off nicely. Thankfully we didn’t have to work from old scans or build all of that from scratch. Mike had already created a vector file of the entire Secret Wars #8 cover which he very graciously allowed us to use for this! A few tweaks here and there and it was finally complete! We think it’s a great looking cover that honors the past while featuring some great current characters along with favorites from all eras.

Thanks for reading and thanks to Mike Zeck and John Beatty for doing this wonderful cover for us!

Secret Wars #1 comes out on May 6th but you can pre-order a copy now by going HERE. Of course if we have any left, we will have them at HeroesCon, June 19-21 where you can get both Mike Zeck and John Beatty to sign yours.

Get your HeroesCon 2015 3-day passes HERE!