Video game movies are always considered to be a hit or miss situation. There was a huge push dating back to the 1990’s to push them forward. The reason? Hollywood began to run out of creative ideas and video games had stories with the potential to be huge in movie form.
This led to movies like Mortal Kombat, Tomb Raider, and several others to be made. With their success came sequels — as well as many other video game movies.
Resident Evil, Final Fantasy, Street Fighter, Assassin’s Creed, Hitman, and more recently World of Warcraft and Rampage, would follow. However, while there is now an abundance of video game movies, only a fraction of these movies would be successful or critically beloved. The reason is usually due to the lack of a proper story or a proper star playing a critical role. It’s truly hit or miss in this field, so being great right off is important.
That means you have to find the right game to fit the movie world. The Witcher heads to Netflix soon for a mini-series, Uncharted as well as The Last of Us are getting the movie treatment in a year or two.
That made us made us get to thinkin’ about what other video game movies could hit theaters and actually be awesome for moviegoers and gamers alike?
With that in mind, here are 20 video game movies we’d like to see:
Years ago, a video game mostly played on the computer swept the nation. The name of it was Oregon Trail. Playing it in the 90’s and 2000’s, fans could follow a family of people as they navigated the open frontier of the Oregon trail. This trail was very real, and thousands of people died traveling it.
The trail covered over 2,000 miles and went through the main American Frontier. It went through modern-day states like Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, Ohio, Idaho, Wyoming, and eventually Oregon itself. Mountain men discovered and mostly made a path for wagons by the early 1800’s. However, it was not completely set…which meant it could be harder as people went along.
Real-life issues affected the family, and no matter what walk of life they came from…they had to remain fed and hydrated and try to not get sick. The ultimate goal for the gamer was to make it through the trail and to your destination without letting anyone die. Though this is easier said than done. A dramatic movie around this game concept would be ideal.
The Oregon Trail is completely real in that the game was made after the historically brutal path taken. Using immigrants, set in the 1800’s, and following a great concept…this movie could be incredible. In fact, with the proper actors and story….it could get Oscar-buzz.
2Detroit: Become Human
Detroit: Become Human hit stores earlier this year follows 3 people, well, robots. The game takes place in the distant future where androids have now become smarter and more equipped. While they would originally only be possible for the rich to afford, they’d eventually become more affordable for the working class. The androids would look exactly like any human with the only exception being a chip on their head that gave away the android look. Covered up, no one could know.
You start your journey with Marcus, a man who was serving a great older man who had experienced it all. He treated Marcus with kindness and respect, as a true person. Marcus knows his master is dying but he sees him mostly like a father, not an owner. He sees Marcus as a son. Yet his real-life son is in deep with drugs and wants money, which is refused to him.
The son sets off a heart attack in the old man, causing his death. The son, jealous of his father’s fortune and Marcus’ closeness to him, blames the android for the death. This puts Marcus on the run. He then finds a way to break through his programming and becomes a free-thinking individual. You follow the path of another, this time an android who is watching a little girl that seems to have a drunkard and abusive father.
Then finally you follow the journey of a police android who is often responsible for hunting down others like him that have done wrong. Led by Marcus, several androids have broken out in their freedom. Now through him, they are asking to be treated the same as any human…and to get the same rights.
Everything you do affects the world you’re in. Everything one person does can also affect the other two main players. It truly is a brilliant game and the concept of the film would be simple. While movies like I, Robot covered portions of this concept, it was not in full. It did not have the same story arc, and this is an incredible story. The cool part? Most of the game was done in motion capture. So, you could bring all the same people in to play the characters.
If you liked Halo, there is a solid bet to make that you’d enjoy Destiny too. It is made by the same company, Bungie. Except this is by no means console exclusive, allowing for gamers of all types to play. It’s an RPG Shooter just like Halo, except the story of the game is very different. The game follows you, The Guardian, as you travel the worlds around you. While others are doing the same job, you have your own story to follow.
Bungie has described the game as a “mythical science-fiction future.” This relates many to Star Wars and other titles like Halo before it. However, it differs in some pretty big areas. It is set 700 years from now, which makes sense due to the “future” ideology we were given. Originally, this is a very great place that allows people to explore in peace and have their hands on some amazing technology.
Humanity has spread across the galaxy due to something known as “The Collapse.” This happens to end many colonies with their Golden Era far behind them. Humanity is now on the brink of extinction with Earth being the last home to mankind. “The Traveler” saved several people and took them there. It is some sort of celestial body that once allowed humanity to see the stars.
An ancient enemy to The Traveler known as “The Darkness” has come and it has now begun to take out all life as we know it. Only one city known simply as The Last City, holds human life. Protected only by a wall and The Guardians, the enemy known as The Darkness cannot harm humanity. But they get closer and closer and the more they do, the harder it will be to stop them.
The Guardians are sent out using a power of theirs known as “The Light” to take out several of The Darkness. The Traveler needs to be awoken, and one Guardian is tasked with that job. Along with taking out threats to life along the way. Truly, this could be an incredible film. Due to the customization and mysterious, genderless Guardian…anyone could play this role.
That said, you have the chance to create an amazing universe that could do some big things. Why not do it?
4Tom Clancy’s The Division
Tom Clancy’s The Division is set in a dystopian world after a smallpox pandemic that was transferred via banknote, New York City must be quarantined to contain the disease. Known to be “The Dollar Flu” or “Green Poison,” this widespread and chaotic event needs to be held down. Knowing people may want to get in or out, the United States Government activates sleeper agents across Manhattan.
They are called the Strategic Homeland Division or simply “The Division” by locals of those who know of them. You play as one of these people who is activated to help assist first responders. Some take advantage of the chaos to push their own agendas to the local area. Due to the fact that they are quarantined, it is impossible to get much help from the outside.
This leaves the player with a lot to try and accomplish, but with help, he or she can manage to save the city and possibly the country. Searching for a cure is a priority but keeping order in a time of mass chaos is the main priority. Ultimately, a movie like this could land very well. Tom Clancy-inspired films have always done well seemingly. So another would only be great to see.
5Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
We know we’re kind of cheating with this one. However, it’s not too big of a cheat. Before Disney acquired the Star Wars franchise, Lucasfilm still was owned by George Lucas himself. They used the franchise for several things from continued comic book material to various books. Eventually, video games would come forward and most of them did very well. However, the most beloved was clearly Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic series.
This was a series of games first came out in 2003 and would come out progressively ever since. They’d eventually be remastered and come out on various systems. The story takes place about 4,000 years before the rise of the Galactic Empire. This is the empire that we see for the original three films. That said, Darth Vader and Darth Sidious have not even been born yet.
The original story revolves around mostly two men, Revan and Malak. The best of friends, both were curious and hungered for the opportunity. They’d originally start out as Jedi members. However, after being brainwashed both men would turn to the dark side, with Revan eventually being found by the Jedi and subjected to this as well. Malak hungered for power the closer he got to the dark side. The Jedi and the Sith, of sorts, were on the bad side of Revan.
Revan becomes a one-man army as he travels to end things and bring true balance. To this day, Revan is STILL considered one of the best badasses in Star Wars history. Fans have been begging for a movie to be made about him. This game series alone follows an incredible story. With Disney wanting to put out present-day films mixed with past-generation movies…it seems like a movie surrounding Revan and Malak would be ideal.
Developed by the extremely talented Hideo Kojima, the Metal Gear franchise has been beloved. Well, until Kojima left the team behind the game. Then everything went downhill, fast. The original games rank as some of the most brilliant in history, which fans have considered to be extremely impressive. How a team can continue to deliver hit after hit with the same series is incredible. The question is, could this make a proper movie? Especially, a movie franchise?
It’s possible. The story originally revolves around Snake. We eventually get a Liquid and Solid Snake and what not, but this is going too far ahead. The story of the game starts out relatively light and builds. Metal Gear’s universe begins officially around the World War II period. A portion of the Cobra Unit within Metal Gear was tasked with defeating the Axis Powers at this point.
Metal Gear decided that they wanted to slow down tech involvement in real-world history. So, they used past tech during the Cold War of the 1970’s. The ability of improved tech grows as each game releases. Over the span of 11 games, all truly getting started around the Cold War to present day, we’ve seen compelling narratives come into play.
Chronologically, Metal Gear Solid 3 is the first game in the series and that is where we’re first meeting our main character in the universe, Snake. This game focused on the rise of Snake inside the CIA during the Cold War and his affiliation with “The Boss.” She is a mother-like character to Snake, as well as his primary mentor. The Boss then defects to the Soviet Union, causing a rift in their relationship, with Snake being sent to Russia to kill her.
His exploits in killing The Boss while navigating in a less than tech-savvy Cold War make the game compelling. However, what makes it more compelling as a film is how the chronological series could play out. Stretching a series of 11 games out would be easy, and it could be pretty compelling to shorten them up for a three-picture deal.
The emotional connections to the characters and the history of what happens with Snake often bring people back to the games year after year. While it can be tough to follow where we are in the series at a given time, it is absolutely thrilling to see where things will end up next.
7God of War
Both Dave Bautista and Jason Momoa have come out publicly saying that they want a God of War movie that they’d love to star in as the main character, Kratos. This already means you have two legit stars interested in a movie that has yet to get a complete greenlight by anyone. Sony owns the game franchise, and thus a movie from them makes a lot of sense.
The series of games revolves around Kratos, a man who is fed up with the Gods and decides to do something about it. A servant previously to Ares, Kratos now finds himself tasked by the Goddess Athena to find Pandora’s Box. However, he has to go through the God of War to make this happen.
Ares is running through Athens, destroying anyone and anything else he wants, while the now Spartan Warrior Kratos hot on his tail. Kratos knows he has to stop him, if only for his own revenge or Athena. However, he has to stop him now more than ever to save the people of Earth more misery and bloodshed.
He defeats Ares and becomes the new God of War, ascending to Mount Olympus. The overall beginning video game, now tracking through four extremely impressive points in the franchise, could be a huge movie. In fact, it could be a great franchise of films. The people of the video game universe want this movie to happen more than most. With the right stars attached, it seems like a no-brainer for any studio. Especially Sony themselves!!!!
8Red Dead Redemption
With the newest game in the series set to come out at the end of October 2018, it makes complete sense to begin talking about a Red Dead Redemption film. Considered by many to be one of the greatest video games in history, Red Dead ranks as a favorite for gamers all over.
Today, Western movies are often not successful, but that may change with Red Dead.
From the way the story was designed to how it ended, it was perfect. It’s not some typical Western film, as the game’s in-depth story with a real emotional connection that makes it stand out above several games like it from the past.
The game happens to revolve around the decline of the American Frontier period. It follows a former outlaw now turned straight that is forced via blackmail by the American government to join them as a hired gun. It has some comedy involved. However, what ultimately brings us in is clearly the action and development of the characters.
The game gives us real-life issues from the West mixed with a story that is beautifully done. How could we turn down a movie about it?
It is still mind-boggling that Disney has a successful video game series that revolves around some of their most iconic characters…and they have yet to make a movie about it. Kingdom Hearts is a video game series that gamers absolutely love playing.
While they all have differences in their storylines, the same premise is present. Several Disney characters are in the game and they all help or get in the way of the main characters while they are on their quest. Usually, the big names like Mickey Mouse, Goofy, and Donald Duck have a huge role as well.
Funny enough, the game is made by Square Enix. They’re the team behind Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and recent Tomb Raider and Call Of Duty games. If anyone knows how to take movies to film, it’s Square Enix. How has this not happened? Disney makes films about every freaking thing in the world and ignores Kingdom Hearts?
10No Man’s Sky
When Hello Games put No Man’s Sky out to the world in 2016, it flopped with gamers pretty bad. By 2018 and tons of updates later. No Man’s Sky has gone from a space shooter to a legitimate RPG game. It revolves around a character you play as who does not know where he is or how he got there. He has to figure out clues along the way as he literally travels the universe.
This leads to you, codename “The Traveler” going from system to system to find clues. All while you’re pushed by various alien races to help them. Every planet you go to has his own ecosystem and environment, with various life-forms around that will be friendly or hostile.
We’ve seen the success of movies like Star Wars and Star Trek. Both of which have become billion-dollar franchises for their respective studios. They are similar to No Man’s Sky in that they contain aliens, space, and various compelling planets. However, the stories are completely different.
You play as a character that seems to be able to do it all. You know how to operate in commerce, learn languages, and you’re knowledgeable about multiple portions of technology. Much of it alien-originated. This is why finding out who you are and where you come from, as well as finding those who know you from the past, is quite important. A space mystery for the ages this could be.
That allows NMS to get into a Space Drama/Action department without having to seem too similar to a Star Trek or Star Wars franchise. The story could be altered a bit for film, but overall the visuals and compelling mystery in story form could be pretty fun. Plus, this genre is hot right now. Why not go toward it?
A few years ago, if one claimed a movie based on only monsters would be hitting the big screen and actually succeed…it would be comical, to say the least. The monster movies of the past were famous but rarely were smash hits at the box office anyway. Then Godzilla and Jurassic Park were remade and destroyed in theaters. Then movies like Fantastic Beasts and Rampage would see huge numbers too.
This genre is not only hot right now, but it’s able to stay alive in a world where superhero movies are dominating the box office seemingly every other month. Monster Hunter as a video game franchise has been successful, but the overall premise of the series revolves around the title of the game. Simple, true…but compelling just the same.
Unlike Fantastic Beasts or Jurassic Park, this is all about the monsters. They are all unique in various ways and come from all walks of life. Small or large, the depth shown to the series is clearly notable when you play through each game.
It has been said since 2012 that a movie would be coming regarding this project. A recent announcement claims it could be as well. However, movies like this have been stopped several times. Until we see it, we’re going to continue to mention it’s needed.
Fallout 76 will be hitting stores this Fall, and it will act as sort of a prequel to the entire series. This is huge to note, as it could give us a really clear starting point where a movie could come into play. Every Fallout game is virtually the same. There is a dystopian future of some kind and you enter it from a safe space that you were in prior.
You’re coming back into the world after a nuclear explosion or some type of world-ending event. Fallout 76 is set to differ from this and give us more background on the “before.” Fallout offers a very unique perspective with its interesting world both before and after the world changing event.
A player is involved in a game heavily, with the world shaping around them. This sets it apart from a random world-ender story. We’re seeing amazing technology, monsters, and unique characters. All of which could set Fallout apart for a future movie. Due to the fact that we have such an open landscape as players…creative writers have a huge opening to do whatever they feel like within the universe.
That means a movie is not only easy to write, but gamers will find the unique ideas to be plausible most of the time. That helps when it comes to movies like these.
While we are well-aware that Assassin’s Creed was taken to film and even had Michael Fassbender star in the movie, it was hated by fans and critics alike. The reason? They chose the Spanish Inquisition time period to make their movie. While no one really hates the concept of the time chosen, it has no actual connection to the video game universe AT ALL!
With Ubisoft deciding to go that route, it seemed odd. They continue to make video games, with the most recent going back to Ancient Egypt and Ancient Greece. We already are now aware of how the first Assassin Brotherhood came to be as well as the connection to the “People That Came Before.” Due to the fact that we have a beginning but not an end, we could easily make a series of movies starting from the AC: Odyssey game and work forward in history.
The only issue that comes into play here is that the first few games involve Desmond, a kid who grew up in the Assassin Order but went out on his own upon reaching adulthood. The evil group Abstergo, a front for The Templars in present time, kidnap him and force him into the animus. The animus allows a person’s DNA to be used and the subject to be taken back in time to experience ancestors and their lives.
A bleeding effect goes into play, giving the person of present-time the same abilities of the subject they are experiencing the life of. This allows Desmond to develop into a legit assassin in his own right.
Eventually, the tech gets better to where a person’s DNA does not have to be used, as any DNA from the historic individual can be used by anyone to go back to the past. It’s all on making sure one gets their hands on it before the other group does. The major time periods we’ve gone to have been incredible. From the Spanish Renaissance Era to Colonial America, French Revolution-Era France, and Victorian-Era England. This is just to name a few.
The only issue is that due to the series going back time and using a new present-day protagonist and the believed death of Desmond, it would be harder to just start in Ancient Greece for a movie. While it is the historical first in the series, the original first game involved the era of The Holy Wars in the 1100’s and the greatest assassin in history, Altaïr Ibn-La’Ahad.
This is why Abstergo needed Desmond, as Altair is his ancestor. If the movies were given a great big series of films, they could be amazing. However, if Ubisoft makes a film that ultimately has nothing to do with the video game concept…what is the point of making it? Bring Desmond and Altair into play for the first one. Then bring Ezio in for the next and you’ll have people hooked.
See Also: How Assassin’s Creed Should End
Just Cause follows a hero named Rico Rodriguez who does what he does, well, just cause. In all seriousness, Rico is an operative working for a mysterious group called “The Agency.” His main goal is to take down organizations that seem to be a threat to the world. More importantly, if these people have any key intel, weapons, or people with them…it is up to Rico to find them.
The ultimate goal of Rico is to finish his mission and do so by any means necessary. This has led to the player being able to use Rico at some absolutely insane points. The man can jump out of a helicopter and on the way down shoot up a base while free falling before he has to get his parashot out. Then still keep at it.
The player makes Rico do insane things because they are, quite frankly, available to do. Just Cause has been known for its over the top material, but that is a good thing. Automatically, the story base could be centered around anything needed really. So why not do a film using this game concept? It would be incredibly easy to do, as the free and open story options are endless.
Plus, you can never be too much…considering Just Cause fans would want an over the top movie to match the game.
15Horizon: Zero Dawn
Somehow, an under the radar game came out of nowhere and blew people away a few years ago. Usually, title RPGs do this, and we expect them to be good. But when Horizon: Zero Dawn came out…it made several interested. When we played it, we were given a beautiful story and an insanely fun game.
This game revolves around a girl names Aloy, a girl growing up without a mother in a land filled with machines that are present as animals and other lifeforms. She finds out what happens to her mother and has to track down clues to understand how the world ended up as it did.
Armed with a bow and arrow mostly, which is tricked out with awesome gimmick arrows, she has to search an open world. What will she find? Who will she run into? What machines will help or hurt her on her journey? The possibilities are endless for this type of game, and even more so for a movie about it. Are you going to try and claim this isn’t perfect for a film? Try, we dare you.
16Spec Ops: The Line
Made by Take-Two Interactive, the same people who own Rockstar Studios (makers of GTA, Red Dead), a wargame seemed like an interesting move by the company. Spec Ops: The Line follows Captain Martin Walker and his elite team of Delta Force Soldiers. The team is asked to go to Dubai on a simple recon mission due to a team needing help in the area. Walker and his team agree, not realizing what they were getting themselves into.
Upon arrival, an attack of white phosphorus hits Walker and his team, which forces him to suffer concussion-related symptoms as well as hallucinations. This brings his mental health down but he feels he is fine and presses forward. Apparently, a man by the name of John Konrad is to blame for all the things they have gone down. From the attack on Walker’s team to the issue they were there to check into. Yet this man had been a Colonel in the Armed Forces!
Dubai and all that happened within it was his fault. All the death and problems Walker has to go through or experience completely goes back to Kondrad. Throughout the game, one is hearing a voice that is assumed to be Konrad. He believes he is helping him originally then realizes that he is clearly not doing so.
Finally, he manages to be captured after a hard-fought battle by Konrad’s men. They take him to the Colonel, and it is there Walker sees the long dead and decaying corpse of Colonel John Konrad. After the white phosphorus attack that hit Captain Martin Walker, he experienced hallucinations that made him see good people as bad.
This means he was slowly killing good men, many of them who were not actually attempting to fight the Captain early on. They try to hold their own but simply cannot. An old broadcast is technically what plays Konrad’s voice, but it was not perceived as it was supposed to be. Walker realizes HE was the bad guy the entire time. He killed innocent, good people on a simple recon mission.
A horror/war movie following what happens here could be absolutely thrilling. It is still one of the best endings ever experienced in gaming as no one say the end coming as it did. The question for most is not IF it could be good, but rather…how good? It’s insanely dark, twisted, eerie, and can clearly bring a shock by the end for those who never played the game.
Dragon Age as a franchise is well known and beloved, with a few of its games thought to be iconic at this point. Like some others on the list, it comes from the fantasy RPG genre. The series has a lot of characters with a huge background set up for most of them. The detail in the story is present even more so due to the character building. Dragon Age: Origins alone gave us 6 characters to play as, all with unique stories and backgrounds.
It blends in the Medieval world, mixing it with interesting animals or monsters and then topping it off with some magical material. Real fantasy-driven stuff for sure. In a world where Harry Potter, Hunger Games, Divergent, Fantastic Beasts, and others can all do well and partly last during the era the others were in too…it seems weird to believe Dragon Age could not do well.
Will it become a huge new movie franchise? Due to the story it has and the brilliance behind the overall video game franchise, one could make it into a notable television series or movie franchise. Either way, it is needed.
18Legend of Zelda
Growing up with the Legend of Zelda games, one thing was true. You could tell who knew the game by asking someone if they knew the name of the main character. If they did not say Link, but rather, Zelda…you knew who your true friends were.
The series of games that were only on Nintendo became massively successful. They revolved around a simple premise originally, fight everyone and everything in your way to save the Princess. This expanded over time until eventually you were given a massive and beautiful open world to accomplish your mission. The games involve magic, medieval time periods, as well as unique animals and monsters.
The player must brave evildoers, haunted forests, and more as they seek whatever it is they might be after.
There is very little like this series, at least to the extent of the story we see here. With various things that could be perfect for movies today, it seems odd that this story has not been adapted for a film yet.
Halo follows a figure known as the Master Chief. He comes from a race of people bred to ultimately become Spartans who will defend humanity. While we do not know or realize the size of the character from the first game, he is well over 7-foot-tall and could be considered a giant in today’s time.
The original game focused on one narrative. Stop the Covenant War and eventually The Flood from reigning over the universe. We’re given more information about the Chief as well as the Halo universe itself as the games play out. The story is complicated but makes sense as it develops. We know a race of people called the Forerunners fought the Alien race known as The Flood, which at the time had run roughshod through the Milky Way Galaxy.
In order to stop this race from hurting life as they had known, The Forerunners decided to make a last-ditch weapon to save the galaxy and the universe at large. They called it the Halo Array. They made an installation known as an Ark, which formed ring-shaped structures known, of course, as Halos.
When these were activated, they would destroy all sentient life in the galaxy. This would kill The Flood, as it would take away their food population. However, in doing this they also sealed their own fate. Around 100,000 years later, humanity finds itself under the new command of the United Nations Space Command. This unit colonized several worlds due to its “slipspace” travel technology. They also trained various people as they aged in various forms of education, fighting, and weapons training.
Newer “Outer Colonies” and the Older “Inner Colonies” begin to find themselves at odds. This leads to a Civil War, which sparks the Spartan-II program that creates the group of soldiers the Master Chief ends up coming from. This would be used to save humanity and stop the rebellion. By year 2525, all human worlds find themselves under attack by an alliance known as The Covenant.
They believe that humans are a horrible race who are not only hurting their lands and people but are insulting their Gods. Their Gods happen to be The Forerunners, which is quite compelling. This begins a sort of religious war that becomes a mass genocide. The Covenant are better prepared with far better technology, and they have more in their army than all of humanity.
Yet they don’t have Master Chief, do they?
While Halo was attempted in movie form, it was a small film that did nothing of note. It was as independent as a film could be. The same issue occurred with their series. If they really want to take it and make it a major film franchise, it would be incredibly easy.
20Elder Scrolls & Skyrim
While Skyrim might be one of the most successful solo games in the history of gaming, it was not the start of the series. Elder Scrolls began in 1994 and became a huge success. This spawned new games or sequels for years to come. This would be present until 2011 when Skyrim came into play.
Since then, it has been the leading voice of the Elder Scrolls series. The series of games revolves around a pre-medieval world that also presents real-world dangers and elements that we see in our own world.
Usually, we’re under an Empire of some type. Sometimes this leads to conflict with the empire leaders or it doesn’t, depending on circumstance. Obviously, tech is not in existence here really. That leads us to use elements of magic as well as a bow and arrow, sword, axe, or what have you.
One travels to different parallel worlds and enters areas where we come across Mythological beings and creatures. This leads to other fantasy-driven creatures like elves, orcs, and anthropomorphic animals to appear depending on the world.
One hero, the player, must rise to beat a threat to the world. Honestly, this is what some of the best epic movies are made of. Some have been concerned it could come off too much like Lord of the Rings. But with stark differences in the stories, it seems like it could separate itself pretty well.
An Elder Scrolls game that could make a huge world, and became a huge success that THEN adds the Skyrim story-arc…can a studio really pass this up?