Dressed for Battle

I’ve been working on a project for much of the last year, but haven’t been able to talk about it up until now. I haven’t actually been given the go-ahead about it now, but it’s all over the web already anyway, so here it is:
Armouron-Armoured GhostI was commissioned last year, by Random House Children’s Books, to write a series of books for a project entitled ‘Armouron’, about a team of young knights in a futuristic world.
The first two books are due out in May – ‘The Armoured Ghost’ and ‘Lying Eyes’. There are another two already in production, plus more by another writer, Richard Dungworth, who’s handling the other half of the job. The series is aimed at readers of books like ‘BeastQuest’ or ‘The Edge Chronicles’ and fans of the Power Rangers and Ben 10 franchises.
It’s been an interesting process, the first time I’ve written stories based on initial ideas that weren’t my own (if you don’t count my work in advertising as fiction) – although I’ve been in on the conceptual work for the story-lines almost from the start. Because I’m working on this on a commission basis, I’m using the name ‘O.B. McGann’ to mark these as slightly different to my usual stuff.
There will be a toy range, produced by Bandai, coming out in connection with the series. These will be suits of armour with interchangeable parts. Apart from being pretty cool in their own right, it’s hoped they will encourage kids to get more involved in constructing their own combinations and get back to playing in more physical ways (you know, fighting and stuff – ‘horseplay’ as our parents used to call it in their wholesome way). Here’s the introductory text to the series:
‘For centuries, an order of knights worked to keep the peace across the galaxy. Mighty warriors, the Armouron Knights fought for Honour, Duty, Compassion and Justice. They battled organized crime and helped defeat cruel dictators. They prevented wars. Life in the galaxy was not perfect, but people knew justice and peace.
Armouron-Lying Eyes‘Then, on one planet after another, huge corporations began to seize power. They wanted to control the entire galaxy – and only the Armouron Knights were stopping them. The corporations spread lies about the knights, turning people against them. They sent their private armies to defeat them. Terrible battles were fought, but one by one, the Armouron Knights were captured or killed.
‘Now the last of the Armouron are scattered around the edges of the galaxy. Not many are left, and they are getting old. A new generation is needed. Planet Earth is controlled by the Perfect Corporation. They call it a Perfect World, but in truth, it is a prison. Here, on Earth, one of the last remaining knights has recruited five young warriors to train in the ways of the Armouron. They lack experience, but they make up for it with raw talent and determination. They are the only hope for a new generation of knights.
‘And the galaxy needs the Armouron more than ever . . .’
At this point, you’ll know if this is up your street or not. If you’re still reading, we’ve packed this series with the kind of stuff Richard and I (and the rest of the production team) loved as kids; action, pace, suspense, colourful characters, humour, strange creatures, cool machines, weird weapons, more action, shape-changers, dangerous robots, mad scientists and a bit more action in case things were getting slow.
We hope you enjoy the stories.