MARVEL SUPER HERO SECRET WARS was a 12-issue maxi-series published in 1984, conceived as a way to tie in to a line of Mattel toys based on Marvel characters. The major ongoing Marvel comic book series of the period contained 1-3 tie-in issues with the maxi-series. While the toyline was short-lived, SECRET WARS would have a lasting impact on the Marvel Universe and comic publishing in general as well. SECRET WARS introduced the symbiote--which became Spider-Man's new, black costume, but which gained even more fame when later it bonded with Eddie Brock to become the iconic character Venom. While comics based on toys and guest appearances and character crossovers were not unheard of before SECRET WARS, the series set a precedent by bringing together nearly all of Marvel's big-name heroes as an 'event,' and interestingly the toys themselves were based on Marvel's own characters. And while CONTEST OF CHAMPIONS preceeded SECRET WARS as a potential many-character 'event,' plot elements from SECRET WARS were the first to have lasting effects on some its characters' solo comic book series. This event-with-repercussions model would make an indelible mark on the comic industry as the prototype for all the contemporary comic book events that would follow by nearly every publisher. SECRET WARS has a sequel of its own called SECRET WARS II, which included with its maxi-series, tie-in issues in nearly every ongoing Marvel series. While generally known as SECRET WARS, the 1984 series was technically titled MARVEL SUPER HERO SECRET WARS. Another event in 2015 was titled SECRET WARS, an event in which the entire Marvel publishing slate was rebooted. (The 5-issue mini-series from 2004-2005 called simply SECRET WAR is not related to the 1984 or 1985 series.) Publishing events are such a fixture of the comic book industry now, it's difficult to fathom a time before which they existed.