'Family Guy' mobile video game coming early next year

"Family Guy" fans will soon have another pastime that fits with Peter Griffin's preferred level of physical activity: a video game for mobile devices. 

Fox Digital Entertainment, the mobile content division of 20th Century Fox, has teamed with San Francisco start-up TinyCo to put out the yet-unnamed game based on "Family Guy," the irreverent animated comedy.

The game will launch early next year for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets, the companies said Tuesday. TinyCo is working with the writers from Seth MacFarlane's Fuzzy Door Productions on the role-playing game in which players control the characters from the "Family Guy" hometown of Quahog, R.I., through various adventures. 

One of the important challenges, said Andrew N. Green, TinyCo's head of business development, is to make sure the humor of the show carries into the game. 

"We want you to laugh your ass off," he said. "We're trying to pull off the humor and the dialogue and the satire as much as possible. If that doesn't get captured in the game in a really authentic way, no one's going to want to play it." 

The game, which will be free to play, will make money when users make a digital goods purchase off the game application. 

The companies said it will feature original story lines that pull elements from the 200-plus "Family Guy" episodes, as well as current events. (Foreshadowing the tone of the humor, a promotional photo shows Peter sitting on a toilet while playing on his phone.)  

The series is in the middle of its 12th season, and a recent episode drew fans' ire after killing off a main character -- the talking, martini-sipping dog Brian. The companies would not say whether Brian might be resurrected for the app.  

This isn't the first time Fox has made a game or app based on one of its brands. The studio has put out a number of products, including a "Glee" karaoke app (no longer in service), and games such as "Angry Birds Rio" and "The Simpsons: Tapped Out." 

Matt McMahon, Fox Digital Entertainment's vice president of mobile, said the goal is to give players a reason to keep coming back, and that means making an interactive experience that stays true to the characters.  

"'Family Guy' has done very well on all sorts of platforms," he said. "A lot of what people love about the show, we'll put into the game."

TinyCo, which was founded in 2009 and has financial backing from investment companies such as Pinnacle Ventures and Andreessen Horowitz, says its current roster of games, including "Tiny Monster," "Tiny Village" and "Tiny Zoo Friends," have been downloaded 85 million times.   

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