Weekend Hot Topic, part 4: Your dream licensed video game

GameCentral readers name the movies, TV shows, and comics they’d most like to see turned into a game, from It to Doctor Who.

The subject for this week’s Hot Topic was suggested by reader Carnie and inspired by the slow, but noticeable, resurgence of big budget licensed games in recent years. What video game would you most want to see based on something that already exists and who would you want to make it?

We had plenty of suggestions, for properties both new and old, with James Bond and Game Of Thrones being particularly popular – as well as the obvious, to gamers at least, potential for more Star Wars and superhero games.


More than meets the eye

Obviously I’m sort of cheating here because I can guarantee GC are going to use this letter, but as a fellow fan I would definitely want to see more Transformers movies. I think the non-movie games from Activision were actually really good, both the High Moon ones and PlatinumGames’ effort.

High Moon got the characterisation dead on and Platinum are, obviously really great at action. But both games were only scratching at the surface of what could be done. Neither game made much real use of transformations, which seemed to be primarily a technical limitation of the last gen. There weren’t any open worlds and you couldn’t really go that far, so there wasn’t really that much point transforming.

At times you could see how great it would be if you had both though, with the Vortex level in War For Cybertron, where you could transform into a helicopter whenever you want and fly around what was a pretty big level. That dialled up all the way to the next gen would be my dream game, with the ability to be car, plane, and various specialist transformers. I don’t know what it would ever happen but then I imagine that’s the case for most of what we’ll hear about this weekend.


No justice

I don’t know how we’ve gone from the Batman: Arkham games being proclaimed as the best superhero games ever to… nothing on the DC side of thing. No more Batman games and nothing for any other character except a couple of beat ‘em-ups. If they can make movies of Aquaman and Shazam – too of the lamest, most overpowered characters in the DC pantheon – work surely it can’t be too hard for a game as well?

Just looking at the Justice League, I’ll admit that The Flash is difficult (but there’s got to be something there a talented dev can come up with) but Batman’s already been done, Wonder Woman is God Of War with a lasso, and Cyborg already looks like a video game character.

And while Superman is difficult because he’s invulnerable to most things he’s got an excellent rogues gallery, most of which can kill him. And in any case the idea of making his health bar, or whatever, other people rather than himself is one that could definitely be made to work in the right hands.

And that’s ignoring all the tons of street level heroes and villains that wouldn’t take any effort at all to make. I mean, why didn’t a Suicide Squad game happen? Marvel are finally getting their act together and DC, who had a head start, are nowhere.


They’ll be back

I’m still surprised that there hasn’t been a decent Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie since the arcade days. I used to love the heroes in a half-shell back in the day and thought that with the Platinum game they were finally going to get their due, but even that was terrible.

It’s not exactly a hard concept to get right either. It’s basically just Devil May Cry, or whatever, but with weirder characters. Them being turtles doesn’t really change anything about the gameplay: their ninjas with realistic ninja weapons, just make the game with that in mind and add in Shredder and the wackier enemies and the job’s done.

That’s not to mention the potential for co-op play, which again hasn’t been realised since the coin-op days. I think the Turtles are on a bit of an ebb in terms of popularity but they always seem to come back sooner or later, so when they do next time I hope someone’s ready with a decent game.


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Unfilmable novel

I remember thinking when people were saying how It was an unfilmable novel, because of how long it was and how many flashbacks and weird stuff it has in it that it probably would make a good game. Just think about it: a group of kids exploring their town and searching for clues about an evil entity that can appear as anything it wants and do anything it wants. And then at the end they get to imagine themselves with special abilities and powers? That’s practically a video game right there.

I’m imagining something a bit like an open world Telltale game in 3D, where you get to wonder around the town and speak to people, with dialogue choices and everything, but when you think you’ve sound somewhere where Pennywise is it switches to a survival mode where you have to explore and fight whatever form he’s taken.

I really think it could work. A survival horror doesn’t have to be constant fear, I don’t think, and I’d love to see something that mixed Telltale style dialogue with more traditional video game action. That might seem weird for other games but I think it’d work perfectly for a movie tie-in.


Protect the innocent

While most movie franchises have a long history of embarrassing failure one guy has always done pretty well for himself: RoboCop! Officer Murphy appeared in the excellent Taito coin-op and the groundbreaking RoboCop 3 (the first first person shooter I ever played) and is a natural for video game interpretation.

I mean, think about it. He’s part man, part machine, and all cop! Whether you base the game on the movie plots or just a day in the life of Alex Murphy the potential is enormous. I just don’t think they’d do it nowadays because the reboot was a flop (thank god) and less people remember the original.

I think there was another reboot coming up though, so maybe they could do something for that? If nothing else, ED-209 deserves to be in more video games.


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Paranormal exterminators

I will always be extremely disappointed by the last Ghostbusters game we got. They had the entire voice cast, while everyone was still alive, and all we got out of it was a so-so third person shooter with a lame script that had maybe two good jokes in it.

I was expecting dialogue to sparkle as much as the original film but what annoys me is that Ghostbusters is actually set up to be a much better game than they attempted. Funnily enough the original C64 tie-in got it right but having you set up business and just running things as a business sim.

Earning your initial clients, ploughing the money into R&D, taking on bigger ghosts, and eventually uncovering the secret behind Gozer or whatever you want the big bad to be. Imagine XCOM but with ghosts and it practically writes (well, programs) itself.

I can get trying to make action games out of newer films where they think only kids are playing but most original Ghostbusters fans are well into their 30s by now, I think we can handle a slower pace and a bit of strategy.


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