Top Three Games to Play Before They Become Movies
by Laura Mooney
When it comes to turning a popular video game into a film, the majority of the time, the film is a mere shadow of what the video game was. This can be due to leaving too much of the storyline out, casting actors who do not fit the role, or attempting to create a story out of something that was best left alone. With few exceptions, most video game based films are best left to what they were intended to be; a game. The film industry nevertheless continues to press forward in an attempt to adapt anything from any popular medium. This article will examine the top three games, all speculated to be made into a film within the next few years, that you should play and experience for yourself before the film industry has a chance to get their hands on yet another amazing video game.
1) Assassin’s Creed – This wildly popular historical game has had movie chatter around it for years now, but within the past few months the details have started to leak; production is rumoured to begin soon. However, the question still remains of whether a game as complex as Assassin’s Creed can really be translated into film. Featuring a non-linear storyline, the game revolves around Desmond Miles, a bartender who is kidnapped by an evil industry and forced into a machine called the Animus, which allows him to recall the genetic memories of his ancestor, Altair Ibn-La’Ahad. The industry’s intention is to use Desmond/Altair to gain knowledge of the whereabouts of items called Pieces of Eden, which would ultimately allow for complete control over humanity…and these are only the basics of the game. Featuring millennia old feuds, alien-esque races, and even biblical figures, Assassin’s Creed has an insanely complex storyline that would take some expert screenwriting abilities to express it fully on the big screen. With rumours floating around that Michael Fassbender (Prometheus, X-Men: First Class) will not only be producing the movie but also playing the lead role of Desmond/Altair, it sounds as though they are off to a good start, but only time (and the hardcore fans) will tell if the game will be successfully portrayed in film. In the meantime, it would be best to play this intricate game before seeing the film, even if it is just to gain a better understanding of the Assassin’s Creed universe. The film’s projected release date is 2015.
2) Need for Speed – Even though making a movie about street racing may seem a bit used up by this point (thanks, Fast and Furious franchise), when you look at the film trailers, video game adaptation or not, it looks like Hollywood has done a pretty good job. Originally released in 1994, the basic premise for Need for Speed the game has always remained the same; race hot cars, win the race, and do not get caught by the police. While the game has maintained the simplest of storylines, the film branches out a bit, expanding the Need for Speed universe by exploring the men behind the wheel. Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad) is cast as a wrongfully convicted mechanic who is hell bent on getting revenge against the man who convicted him. The film focuses on his cross-country road trip to gain justice, and, of course, driving some amazing cars. Even though the film does look like an exciting action flick, nothing compares to playing this old school racing game for oneself. Some of the best features of the game include getting to unlock and customize cars you would only drive in your wildest dreams, all while trying not to completely destroy them while evading hoards of police cars. So while the Need for Speed film’s release date is fast approaching, set for early 2014, it will be interesting to see if the filmmakers are able to live up to the notoriety the game has achieved over the years, and we will have to determine if the film can be any better than driving down the virtual streets in your own customized Lamborghini Diablo.
3) World of Warcraft – There have been endless rumors surrounding the film adaptation of one of the most played games in the world, from Colin Farrell being offered the lead role, to a secret teaser being shown at Comic Con 2013. The rumors have been vague and varied, but it finally looks as though there is one piece of information that is set in stone; production for the Warcraft film will begin January 2014. The original game, released in 1994, takes place in the world of Azeroth, where a great war between humans and Orcs is raging. This is only the beginning of the ever-expanding World of Warcraft, with new continents and races introduced to this high fantasy universe over the years. What will be interesting with the film adaptation is exactly how much of the Warcraft universe they will include. The sheer vastness of the games will make it difficult to include everything, so the filmmakers may choose to only focus on the original storyline of the war between humans and Orcs. If that is the case however, it only provides a better argument as to why one should play the game before seeing the film. While the human and Orc war is a pivotal event in Warcraft, it is only a small fraction of everything that has been put into the game. In order to fully appreciate the game, it is definitely worth giving it a try before the film adaption is forced to narrow it down to one singular event.
While video game adaptations do not exactly have the best track record for being all that great, with some of the best video games being turned into movies in the upcoming years one can only hope that the film industry has learned from their own mistakes, and will actually listen to what their audiences want. Nevertheless, it is still suggested that you take the time to play these great games before the movie versions come out, so that you can really appreciate them in the medium they were intended to be experienced.