Weekend Hot Topic, part 2: Movies that should be video games

GameCentral readers name the films and TV shows they think should be turned into video games, from Blade Runner to Death Note.

The question for this week’s Hot Topic was suggested by reader Grackle, who, inspired by the recent Predator: Hunting Grounds, asked what movie or other licensed property do you think would work well as a video game?

A lot of the suggestions have already been games at some point, especially in the 80s and 90s, but there was still a great desire to see definitive versions of films like The Terminator and RoboCop, as well as newer franchises like Fast & Furious.

Indiana Jones and the fountain of youth
We are long overdue a return for Indiana Jones as far as I’m surprised. I have zero interest in a new film but I would love to see a new game, especially if they can somehow get Harrison Ford to do the voiceover. Given how good the graphics would be in the next gen they could get him to look exactly like his old self and basically create a whole new film that didn’t have to be set in the 60s or whatever. Plus it would be a game!

Admittedly I’d love if it was a graphic adventure, or even a remake of Fate Of Atlantis, but I’ll settle for anything as long as isn’t just straight action or an Uncharted clone.

I know that’s going to be the temptation but an Indy game should be about talking to people with dialogue choices and solving puzzles, not just non-stop action. If you ask me Uncharted games always drag on because there’s nothing else to them but Indy could have much better pacing if it was scripted like a film, with slow moments and fast. I think it’d be great.

Wider world
Gutted that the Predator game was no good, but no surprise there I suppose. To be honest I think these things only work if there’s a big expansive world already to adapt, like Star Wars or Marvel. When you’re trying to adapt just a two-hour movie that has maybe four or five action scenes it just doesn’t work.

Given that I would say that Blade Runner has some of the most potential. It’s only two movies but the world is huge and you could easily make something that had no action or lots. I doubt there’s ever going to be a third film so this could be a really good way to continue the franchise.

I even think there’s a reasonable chance it could happen if Cyberpunk 2077 is a huge hit, as whoever owns the film rights is going to get the notion that they can get a piece of that pie. And if that doesn’t work out they should do a new Dune game. Film buffs will get the connection.

Slow and tedious
One movie series that I always wanted to have a top-end video game has actually now got one in the pipeline: Fast & Furious. Though unfortunately what I’ve seen so far of the game doesn’t fill me with enthusiasm.

I always thought that a Fast & Furious game could be modelled to be essentially a Need For Speed with a much more memorable character set and storyline. It could also obviously have good multiplayer aspects, being a racing game. I’ll admit I don’t know an enormous amount about the planned Crossroads game but even the visuals looked very questionable.

Other movie-game should-have-beens I’ve previously read about range from Escape From New York, Hunger Games (which I think would really work well), The Purge… and a review line which I saw from the Solo: A Star Wars Story movie that said it would have worked really well as a kind of Star Wars Uncharted, if it was made as a video game instead of a movie, which I thought was interesting.

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This is the way
You know what would be nice? Some decent Star Wars games. EA has had the Star Wars so long now the whole sequel trilogy has been and gone and they didn’t make a single game based on it. I mean, no loss there but talk about being late to the party.

I suspect the same thing is going to happen with The Mandalorian, even though lots of people have been saying they should make a bounty hunter game for ages.

I guess they’ll just continue with Fallen Order but I wouldn’t say that was any better than okay. The characters were super boring and I really don’t have much interest in seeing them again. I’d much rather play as a scoundrel than a Jedi and so far EA is not making that dream come true.

Bomb #20
One movie that springs to mind is John Carpenter and Dan O’Bannon’s Dark Star from 1974. The main game could play a bit like Elite, with the player travelling between and destroying unstable planets. Random mini-games could include stargazing, having to feed the alien, playing the bottle organ, the knife game, and navigating electromagnetic storms.

Every so often there would be a bomb malfunction, triggering a (potentially) final mini-game of having to teach the bomb phenomenology – this could play like the Paradroid mini-game involving circuit diagrams and logic gates. If unsuccessful, the bomb would detonate inside the ship and the game would end, but during the credits the player could control an atmosphere-surfing Lieutenant Doolittle en-route to his doom.

A Dark Star game would probably be pretty shallow and short-lived, so best suited to a smartphone/tablet. It would have been awesome if released by Llamasoft/Jeff Minter back in the day.

Stay safe, Covid-19 and whatnot.
Graham Wade

Original concept
I guess there are obvious reasons, what with all the Japanese schoolchildren and all that but I’m amazed there hasn’t been an official Battle Royale game yet. There’s probably some mods or something but it seems a bit unfair that Fortnite and co. have taken so much inspiration, and the name, from the film but it doesn’t get anything out of it.

It would be one of the few chances to get a story mode out of one of these games too, but I doubt it’ll happen.

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Noteworthy idea
I’d suggest an indie game for my comic (anime) to game idea, due to there being no real reason to go full on triple-A game for this. How about Death Note but with a twist. Obviously the story is known but we could have an alternate universe version where you can either be the antagonist or protagonist without being Light Yagami, the main bad guy, or L the super detective who investigates the crimes.

The Death Note story revolves around a notebook owned by a God of Death called Ryuk, that he somehow manages to loose. The book gives the ability for a name to be written in and that person dies from a heart attack no matter where they are in the world. Light (Kira) uses this to create a new utopia of a world by getting rid of all criminals and people he has classified as bad. Then he goes mad and goes beyond what he initially planned.

L, the young detective has to get to the bottom of this and work out who Kira is. In the game there could be a new cast of characters in a Cluedo type affair, where you will have to find the culprit before they find and eliminate you. Or be the Death Note murderer and try to create that utopia by evading the hunt for you by the super detective.

The gameplay would be based on questioning suspects, reading reports, watching TV spots, etc. and piecing clues together to dwindle down the suspects to one, before the antagonist finds out about you and tries to stop you.

Alternatively, getting rid of key people from the antagonist side of things to ultimately clear suspicion on you, whilst you try to achieve your goal, is what playing from the other angle can be like. If you are clumsy and not careful with your ill doings, then instead of you eliminating the protagonist, the super detective will catch and imprison you.

Something like this can be fun without having to have a complex world to design. A more simplistic setup can be used instead. Using a manga/anime look in a comic strip or some other clever development tool to create the world to play in is all that’s needed.

It’s a popular franchise so a fanbase is already there to try it. For all I know, a game like this already exists. I think it’ll be fun anyway.

GC: There are several Death Note video games, but we’ve never played any of them.

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The small print
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