Get a room full of hardcore gamers and show them the 2005 film adaptation of the beloved video game “Doom”… and you will get a room full of unhappy campers. “Doom” is just one case among many of revered games that have suffered mistreatment at the hands of Hollywood. The 1997 movie “Mortal Kombat: Annihilation,” based on the classic arcade and console game, brought the genre to a new low, and German director Uwe Boll’s “Alone in the Dark” got a measly 2.3 out of 10 user rating on IMDB.
When making movies out of popular games, what are these directors doing wrong? For one, they forget they are making a movie, not a non-playable video game; successful adaptations take the source material and adapt it to the language of the new medium. Out of necessity, video games offer either very simple narratives (“Mortal Kombat”) or highly complex ones. The key is to find the middle ground—Christoph Gans found it in “Silent Hill,” as did veteran director Mike Newell in his rendering of “Prince of Persia” (yes, it’s Hollywood eye candy, but it’s also a fun ride).
Click ahead for recently or soon-to-be released sci-fi and fantasy video games could make awesome movies…
‘Age of Wonders III’
This fantasy title from the Dutch developer Triumph Studios was released for PC platforms in March. The series has had a solid fandom since 2002. “Age of Wonders III” promises awesome character design that could translate well onto the big screen. Its medieval knights and a cool bestiary would be an excellent challenge for Hollywood’s FX teams.
The visuals and awesome setting of the universe created by Ridley Scott always makes for good drama. This could be the case of a video game based on a movie that then works as the basis for another movie. “Alien: Isolation” focuses on Amanda, Ellen Ripley’s daughter, and is set 15 years after the events in “Alien.” Space odysseys are a hot commodity in Hollywood, and this could be a goldmine.
‘Dragon Age: Inquisition’
The “Dragon Age” series has slowly but surely gathered countless fans. The world created by BioWare reminds us of recent success stories in popular culture, such as “Game of Thrones” and even “The Hobbit” trilogy. The industry is on the lookout for a new fantasy franchise, and the dark story in “Dragon Age: Inquisition” might be it.
‘Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2’
Yes, vampires do well at the box office, and we think this beloved video game could be the springboard for the next great vampire flick. This title sees Dracula facing his nemesis in contemporary urban environments (although players get a good peek of his castle and can explore it, too). The flamboyant and over-the-top production design could make for a fun and visually arresting movie.
‘D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die’
We all need our fix of cool, high-concept cyberpunk every once in a while. This game follows the story of a man who is trying to solve his wife’s murder while travelling in time. The visuals look amazing, and animation might be the way to go. It has been a while since we last had a good and intelligent sci-fi animated movie.
Do you have a favorite game you think would make a killer movie? Leave us your idea in the comments below…