What Video Game Would Actually Make A Good Movie?

What Video Game Would Actually Make A Good Movie?

Oh dear. Seems video game movies are having a really bad time of it as always as of late. Angry Birds got fried. World of Warcraft and its orcs apparently have no real bite. Ratchet and Clank needed fixing. And I’m running out of even more terrible ideas to use in this word play exercise.

The last time I saw a video game related movie it wasn’t Pixels, I can tell you that. Honestly, I don’t even remember! I stay away from them for the most part.

But if I wanted a movie to be made from a video game franchise, I think we should go with… Neko Atsume. Because it’s so simple and silly. And we’re kinda living it already. The world loves cats. What could possibly go wrong!?

No, really. Don’t answer that.

While we’re waiting for Assassin’s Creed‘s potentially stealthy take down of the big screen (oh hey! I had one more bad word association left in me after all!), tell us, Kotaku readers: What video game would actually make a good movie? Any video game movie you actually enjoyed?


  • Deus Ex could make a brilliant movie. The whole subtext of man vs machine, and of a world divided between the rich and poor (incredibly relevant right now), could actually translate pretty well to the big screen, especially if handled by a director such as Paul Verhoeven.

    • Ghost in the Shell coming soon, see what they do to that before wishing for a DE movie.

    • I would love something with Neil Blomkamp. He does good sci-fi with robot stuff. Chappie was a bit tropey but with help from another writer it would be aweseom

  • Games that focused on story instead of gameplay, so Last of Us, Uncharted, Pacman, Bioshock….

    • Spec Ops is, I think, what would happen if you asked, “Which movie would make a great video-game?” and someone replied, “Apocalypse Now.” The fact that you control the actions of the character (to an extent) helps make you – the ‘viewer’ – complicit in a way I’m not sure a movie could pull off.

  • Mad max has probably been the best adaptation of a movie game franchise, that game is worthy as a standalone title in my opinion, its really well made and not just riding off its movie tie in.

    2nd choice would probably go to the resident evil series..

  • I put on Pixels recently as white noise while I worked, I don’t remember finishing it though. Did the trick.

    But really, video game movies either need to be crafted from the ground up by their home studio/publishers and then adapted to the screen (this is the Marvel method, backed by Disney $) or the alternative is to trust and allow a director/story-teller to create their own take on the property.

    You can’t have both.

    I actually prefer the latter, it’s why some of the most famous characters and stories that get this treatment always endure throughout the years.

    I’m not really a Star Wars or Star Trek person but isn’t there a large enough fanbase now that’s vocal enough to say they actually liked the ‘bad’ movies? I thought there was for Star Wars at least.

  • It’s already happening, but: Final Fantasy XV. Shit already looks so great.
    Kingsglaive though, looks fantastic.

  • Didnt Gizmodo go through this a week or two ago? I jokingly said Tetris, only to find out a day later that someone WAS making a Tetris movie…

    But there were some great suggestions there.

    Any movie made of a game should be focusing on complimenting the games rather just trying to mimic them. I think its one of the reasons a lot of adaptations struggle myself, where they just try to be a non-interactive version of the game they’re portraying.

    Flesh out the backstory that gets skimmed, and compliment the games, and it could be more effective.

        • If they box the DVD’s in square boxes that clip together, and change colours depending on how you arrange them, then I’m on board!

          • And when you’ve had your fun you just put them in a line and they vanish from your life forever.

  • Well y’know how fighting games were inexplicably so popular as movie adaptations in the last few decades? Well where’s Soul Calibur!

    Just slap something together with the awesome ‘Crouching Tiger – Hidden Dragon’ style choreographed swordplay and set it against a bombastic soundtrack by Junichi Nakatsuru.

    • Sammo Hung was working on a Soul Calibur movie for a while. There was a website and everything. It seems to have just vanished, though.

  • The problem with most video game movies isn’t that the games weren’t good for movie adaptations, it’s just that people try to make a video game into a movie. As weird as that sounds, what I mean is that instead of telling the stories that happen behind the scenes or outside of a game, people seem to be intent on translating the video game itself into a movie. One of the reasons I like the Prince of Persia movie is that it tells its own story with commonalities to the games but doesn’t try to be the game. It’s not perfect but it has the right idea.

    Ratchet and Clank should have been a shoo-in since the original game was already a movie plotline with gameplay.

  • Uncharted then,
    Uncharted 2 then,
    Uncharted 3 finishing a year later with,
    Uncharted 4. Then reboot the franchise.
    Hollywood can begin the milking me.

    P.S. Hollywood don’t you dare make Tom Cruse Nathan Drake!!!!!

    • So basically remake the Indiana Jones movies but with more shooting? ^_-

  • I’d probably say the Uncharted series would make a good film franchise. Chris Pratt as Nathan Drake would be awesome.

    Mass Effect might make a good movie trilogy too, but I imagine it’d be hard to cram in all of those hours of content into movies.

    The Witcher might be pretty cool too, but it’s originally a novel series from Poland, so would it be The Witcher based off the novels, or the games, or a bit of both in its own adaptation?

    • There’s been a US Witcher movie in development for a while. Latest update appears to be a mention that it was in pre-production in March.

      If you’re really desperate, you could pick up the Polish Witcher (called the Hexer locally) movie which has been around for years. General consensus is that it’s pretty terrible.

      • The Hexer is actually a film made out of a Witcher TV series – imagine hacking bits of GoT season one into a two hour film and you’d get an idea of it (minus the quality of the source).

        The show is naff, but after a few episodes it’s not too terrible. High praise!

    • Ken Marino or Nathan Fillion are my picks for Drake, to be honest though i want movies to stay away from Naughty Dog stuff, they will do a poor job to say the least.

      • Seems to me, Drake was pretty clearly based on Nathan Fillion, but their argument against casting him is that he’s too old.

        Personally I like the idea of a Uncharted Movie set after the games, so I think he’d still be perfect.

  • Bioshock maybe, you could probably craft an emotional tale about saving the little sisters.

    As for Warcraft, by all accounts from the fans of the game (as opposed to movie critics), you just need to walk in with an open mind. If you’re expecting LOTR level of awesomeness, you’ve already set yourself up for failure.

    and on that tangent, why the heck are we getting the movie a week later when it seems most of the region actually got it early

    • even non fans like it. Warcraft will actually be one of those movies that critics will hate but audiences will enjoy. Case in point critics are giving warcraft a 4/10 while most reviews ive seen from audiences in europe are giving it a solid 7/10. and we all know how shit jasons review of warcraft was

    • See, the first article was just for joke suggestions, now we have the “No really guys, what games would actually make good movies?”

  • Warcraft movie appears to be killing it in the foreign markets like China and Eastern Europe… Its not the video game movies are bad… what they need is to stop giving away control to movie makers.

    Here is our game, our vision, our expanded universe… now let me sign the rights away to it all and hope you will hire us for creative input that you will completely ignore them.

  • There was this game called Escape from Butcher Bay. I reckon the protagonist would be great for a film… 😉

    • Yeah. And what about all those Star Wars video games? Some of those games are shit, but the universe seems like it would be ripe for a whole bunch of movies. Maybe only 3 or 4 good ones, though 😛

  • I would love for movies to have some original content again, instead of being reboots, remakes, sequels, or movie versions of books, comic books, TV shows, video games etc.

    • Not going to happen, Hollywood does it more often than people realise… I was surprised how many movies are remakes of foreign films or screenplays of books not creditted directly.

  • With the right director at the helm, Silent Hill 2 would be an absolutely fantastic psychological horror movie. Bonus points if they use the “In Water” ending.

  • Tetris. Make it a trilogy.

    No movie studio would possibly be brave enough to take on such a project though.

    • You are trolling. 🙂
      You know it’s coming and it’s true.
      For the guys who don’t know, Tetris is coming as a multimillion (~80ish) horror sci-fi production.

      • Horror pretty much reflects how most people feel when told Tetris will be a movie trilogy. It makes the stretching out of plot in The Hobbit movies look positively respectful.

        There are some Japanese visual novels that were made into decent TV series which had decent spinoff movies. Does that count?


        Some of the entries in the list are moderately watchable. I’m not sure that Pokemon deserved 23 films, however.

  • Dead Space but not a watered down PG version, the only way to do it justice is R18

  • Gears of War and Halo both have a lot of book content ripe for a good movie. Outside of the Game the Gears have a lot of personality and stories to tell in their post apocalyptic universe. Halo has Fall of Reach (the book not the game) where it tells of the Chiefs origin and Captain Keys awesome feats before and during the battle of Reach in the Pillar of Autumn

  • Athletic world or family fun fitness trainer as it was known in these here parts.

  • Overwatch.
    How has no-one suggested Overwatch yet? Since the first cinematic trailer, it seems half the internet was begging for a movie instead of a game…

  • I want a cinema movie with quick time events… cause i dont know thexreason why cut scenes need them, but the reason must equally apply to movies

  • I actually liked the Silent Hill movie (the first one). I mean it wasn’t an all time great, but I liked it.
    The Last of Us or something like that where there is strong character development

  • Why is everyone so concerned about games being turned into movies? Many games would make far better TV series than they would 2 hour films. I’d love to see Sony sell the rights to Uncharted or The Last of Us to Netflix where the characters can be better fleshed out over 13 episodes.

  • Overwatch to be honest. That is a very rich world full of stories to tell, so you could tie everything in without having to try and replicate the gameplay stuff. Just keep the shorts style going.

  • Kotor, this war is mine, dayz/project zomboid/etc, squad (from both sides point of view), a 4x game (pick one, think starship troopers on steroids), the long dark, grand theft auto (gone in 60 seconds doesn’t count)

  • Dark Souls. No narration, no conversation. Just one person trying to get through this mysterious door. He keeps dying on the way to the door and gets sent back to the start. Each time he gets closer until He finally reaches the door and gets cut down just before opening it. So he tries again but this time he doesn’t get anywhere near the door.

    This repeats itself for 12 hours with nothing to accompany it but the frustrated viewers screaming “Just open the damn door already”

  • The Last of Us.
    It was basically ‘The Road’ but with Zombies.
    As long as it’s not treated as a ‘Zombie Movie’ and retains the personal struggles that Joel and Ellie endure, and also be treated as a proper standalone movie and not some gross cash in, it could be genuinely great cinema.

    • But it is a zombie concept. Zombie films are at critical mass. We already have po-faced serous zombie movies. 28 days later. We even have ones which are based on disease outbreaks. It was boring years ago. The only recent-ish zombie movie that was any good was REC.
      Perhaps we should look at it the other way and petition Naughty Dog to make a game which is actually fun like Crash 2 instead of trying to emulate established movie franchises with added ’emotion’.

      • Zombies will never reach critical mass, and it doesn’t have to be po-faced. The light-hearted moments in TLOU are accentuated because of the oppressive nature of the world.
        A good movie will always be a good movie, no matter the backdrop, and TLOU has a great great backbone to build a movie plot, and the sub-plots of the game would resonate in any medium.

        • Lol. You clearly don’t watch a lot of horror films if you don’t think zombie films reached critical mass. It happened years ago.
          I’m not saying someone won’t come up with an interesting spin on it in the future. But TLOS didn’t bring anything even remotely inspired to the plate. It was clearly trying to be cinematic and was definitely po-faced to the extreme.
          The ‘naughty dog experience’ when it comes to light hearted moments , is banal at best.

  • Video games and film, as much as they share elements, are vastly different mediums.
    Video games are interactive. Satisfaction comes from achieving things, upgrading, gaining EXP, collecting things, buffing stats based on equipment, performing tasks.
    You can’t do this in film. It’s all well and good to pay fan service to characters and plot lines but this is always done in the most cynical and transparent way possible with film adaptations.
    I say stop making shitty game-to-film things and concentrate on making new films with original ideas. Ideas which can be concisely told in 120 minutes and are crafted with finesse.
    And at the same time stop making games which are devoid of any actual gameplay in favour of making them shoddy interactive films.
    It just waters down both art forms.

  • I’d love to see To the moon. Fantastic game, and a beautiful story. It would probably be a logie winner or whatever they call it.

  • A movie… Hmmm…

    Command & Conquer wouldn’t fit into a 2 hour length…

    Killer Instinct would be ruined by real life…

    It’s too late for Duke Nukem…

    Audiosurf would just promote drugs and epilepsy…

    Wolfenstein would be soo awesome that it would hurt people’s feelings…


    Maybe MechWarrior? – Edit: No, wait, MechWarrior universe too big…

  • Short stories have been used in some of the best film adaptations, and some of the best film adaptations are only really loose adaptations of the original work, that can happily exist in its chosen medium. Like Blade Runner. Metal Gear Solid would make a terrible movie, but Tetris…I could actually see that as being some sort of indie hit, if it were about how people try to find the most efficient methods of packing things into small spaces, like a car boot.

  • I don’t want to be that guy again but can we we all stop calling it the “World of Warcraft movie”?

  • I would absolutely love it if they decided to attempt to create a Legend of Spyro movie again. They originally had plans for it but then it they got cancelled and instead the awful money-grabbing Spyro Skylanders was created instead. Ever since I was a kid I’ve forever longed for a remastered version of the original Spyro Trilogy or a movie of the game but I doubt it’ll ever happen.
    Well, I can keep dreaming I guess. 🙁

  • The games that immediately spring to mind are “The Music Machine” if it was directed in a similar fashion to “Under the Skin”.
    The first “Hotline Miami” (definitely not the second though) if it was directed by David Lynch. “Halo” directed by just about anyone provided it was written well (A lot would have to be changed with the writing, but the location and lore of Halo gives a really nice base for a standard action film).
    “Gods will be watching” could be pretty great as well, but I must admit I haven’t finished that game yet so I’m not sure I could really say.
    Almost any of the Telltale games would work really well as mini-series for TV, not sure about a film though, unless they were adapted as a planned Trilogy.
    “Gunpoint” could work very nicely as well provided someone could balance the humour, noir and heist like elements well.

    • Hotline Miami by David lynch!!! Hahahah that is the sort of batshit insane thinking that just might work.

  • The witcher without a doubt. Such a great story, plus they were books before the game so it might stand a chance like LOTR.

  • I think the issue is, how do you make a movie based on a game, when the game itself involves the player in a much greater way. Every person will most likely have a different experience.

    You could make a movie with the exact story from the game, but then its not new. and if you try and do a new story its hard to capture the same “feel”

    In saying all that, there was a time when Comic Book movies were pretty woeful, so maybe one day

  • Jet Rider/Jet Moto

    Think – all of the serious/professional racing world bits that makes Speed Racer kinda watchable, without any of the silly/nonsensical junk that ruined it- and turn the special effects down a few notches and attempt a realistic look in the races.
    Throw in cameos: various known pro racers/ex racers/team principles from various racing codes from various countries, to avoid overloading it with cameos for any particular audience – fit these in as minor/extra roles.

    Gotta have that Butterfinger and Mountain Dew product placement though otherwise the whole thing is off.

  • STALKER: Shadow of Chernobyl has some real potential. I’d say Sleeping Dogs, but it’s pretty much already a Hong Kong triad movie in the first place. I’d love to see a good Fallout movie but I’m not sure on that one.

    And just for a left field suggestion, Kerbal Space Program. It would work, you know it would.

  • The game premise doesn’t matter at all – it’s in how the pre-production and screen-writing is handled. Any game can be made into a good film if these are addressed first.

  • I reckon The Wolf Among Us or Tales from the Borderlands are great sources to make a movie from. Great characters, great world building. Good shit.

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