The Best TV & Film to Video Game Adaptations
— Alien: Isolation (@AlienIsolation) March 3, 2015
[Source: Alien: Isolation Twitter]
When it comes to films based on video games, there’s a pretty strong track record for truly awful efforts. From the Dwayne Johnson led Doom adaptation to the absolutely inexplicable live-action Super Mario Bros movie, there have been dozens of poor attempts at making video games into movies or TV shows.
Heck, even those which were meant to be good turned out to be trash – Assassin’s Creed we’re looking at you! – which doesn’t exactly bode well for the video game adaptations to come like Sonic the Hedgehog, Call of Duty and Detective Pikachu.
But whilst we’ve been focusing on video games which have become movies, there have been plenty of movies and TV shows which have received video game tie ins – many of which are actually pretty good.
So, in celebration of this underappreciated format, we’re going to share some of our very favourite video game adaptations of major TV and film properties, starting with…
The original Alien movie is, more than its sequels, a straight horror movie. It’s tense, cramped, claustrophobic and features a sense of dread that’s virtually unparalleled in the world of science fiction. It’s a stunning film, but it wasn’t until Alien: Isolation (2014) from Creative Assembly that we got a game match its atmosphere.
Alien: Isolation makes you hide – a lot – in the face of an enemy which is far stronger and far smarter than you. It captures the essence of the movie and, for that reason, we love it.
Ever since Isolation proved good Alien adaptations could be made, we’ve seen a rash of games based on the property, including online casino games like Aliens: Video Slots, highlighting the draw that the property continues to have.
Sequel? Yes, please!
South Path: The Stick of Truth/The Fractured but Whole
South Park’s mixture of pointed political comedy and irreverent, blue humour is a hard thing to capture.
Previous efforts included the N64’s South Park, South Park Rally and South Park Let’s Go Tower Defence Play on Xbox Live, but none of them managed to capture the feeling of the show quite like South Park: The Stick of Truth (2014) and South Park: The Fractured but Whole (2017).
You may have saved South Park in The Fractured But Whole, but have you mastered The Stick of Truth? It's available now on Xbox One and PS4! #SouthParkGame https://t.co/S28YFxSxBI pic.twitter.com/PDjHkMBVdQ
— Ubisoft SF (@UbisoftStudioSF) February 22, 2018
[Source: Ubisoft SF Twitter]
Developed by Obsidian and Ubisoft San Francisco respectively, these RPGs nail both the look and humour of the shows perfectly, having been written by the show staff and slot seamlessly into the narrative of the show at that period in time. Oh, and it too has had a slot adaptation!
What roundup of the best video game adaptations of movies could be complete without the granddaddy – the GOAT – Goldeneye 007 (1997).
Developed by British company Rare for the N64, Goldeneye 007 was released two years after the movie hit theatres, but that extended development time meant that Rare was able to create what many thought impossible – a great shooter for a home console.
With cutting edge graphics, superb controls (for the time) and split-screen multiplayer, Goldeneye 007 defined what a shooting game could be and is still, over 20 years since its release, a truly brilliant game. Now, where’s that cartridge?