By Norris Howard
Video game movies have long been a source of contention, disappointment and confusion in pop culture. As we stand on the cusp of one game film that no one asked for (Sonic the Hedgehog, due out in 2020) and with another in the rearview that capitalized on renewed interest in the franchise (Detective Pikachu), it’s the perfect time to look at some game franchises that could use the big screen treatment and others that really need a second shot at it.
Before we proceed, let it be known that no fighting games will be included on this list. Plots in fighting games are notoriously absurd, convoluted and constantly retconned. It’s only “worked” once in film with Mortal Kombat and that’s not the best bar to set.
Red Dead Redemption – Just play the game. I’m not convinced anyone could make a better film than Rockstar made either game.
Uncharted – It‘s already a film, it’s called Tomb Raider and we don’t need to do it again.
7. Assassin’s Creed
Michael Fassbender is awesome on screen. He’s the only good part about the newer X-Men films, he was a part of perhaps the best scene Tarantino has ever directed in Inglorious Basterds and played Steve Jobs in the better of the Steve Jobs biopics. But not even he could save this mess of effects and call backs to a game that, at the time, hadn’t rediscovered its footing. Part of what made Assassin’s Creed engaging was its meta-narrative surrounding societal control, religion and free will. Yeah, none of that was really explained well in the film. Instead, what we got was a convoluted mess with hard to follow action and writing that had the charm of a Brutalist apartment complex.
Who doesn’t like a good ole kung-fu movie? The Raid and John Wick brought back the feeling of Jackie Chan/Charles Bronson where you know there are some bad guys and they need to be beaten the hell up. Ryo Hazuki’s quest to avenge his father’s death and the hands of the malevolent Lan Di would make for an awesome kung-fu film. It already has the thematic tone for film and with the release of Shenmue 3, a film could help restore the feeling people had when the original on Dreamcast revolutionized cinematic games.
Every time a new animated short for Overwatch is released hundreds of thousands of people clamor for a feature-length product. Overwatch is a very well-liked franchise even though it consists of only one game. It’s gained an immense following and is even one of the largest esports out there right now. With no plot-driven, single-player mode to speak of in the game, the lore of Overwatch is only fleshed out in animated shorts, comics and social media posts. A feature film depicting the first Ominc War and the origins of Overwatch would satiate the rabid appetite for extra content.
Read the rest of this article, and check out our picks for the top 4 games that still don’t have decent movies here.