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Thread: Good (or at least acceptable) Game-to-Movie adaptations

  1. #1
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    Good (or at least acceptable) Game-to-Movie adaptations

    Hey all! Although this might have gone in the Bad Movie! part of the board, there's no astronomy so I put it here.

    Anyways, the release of the DOOM movie trailer here, I got to thinking... what Video Game to Movie adaptations were worth the time spent watching them. I figure it's a pretty short list.

    Here's my nomiations for Good (or at leaset acceptable) Video Game Movies...

    Mortal Kombat- Bad, but not gut wrenchingly so. I'd still watch it while doing something else

    Final Fantasy- Now, I know many out there will dissagree with me there, but dagnabit I liked it!

    Um...uh... nuts. I can't come up with any more.[/list]

  2. #2
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    Re: Good (or at least acceptable) Game-to-Movie adaptations

    Quote Originally Posted by Matherly
    Hey all! Although this might have gone in the Bad Movie! part of the board, there's no astronomy so I put it here.

    Anyways, the release of the DOOM movie trailer here, I got to thinking... what Video Game to Movie adaptations were worth the time spent watching them. I figure it's a pretty short list.

    Here's my nomiations for Good (or at leaset acceptable) Video Game Movies...

    Mortal Kombat- Bad, but not gut wrenchingly so. I'd still watch it while doing something else

    Final Fantasy- Now, I know many out there will dissagree with me there, but dagnabit I liked it!

    Um...uh... nuts. I can't come up with any more.[/list]
    I'm afraid I have to disagree with you here, I've yet to watch a video game movie that does the series justice. The opposite tends to be true as well, most video games based on a movie are made under-budget, under-staffed and with very little time.

  3. #3
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    The only similarity between the Final Fantasy games and FF: The Spirits Within was that a character named Cid (or Sid).

    Then again, most FF games bear little resemblence to each other as well. I liked the FF movie until the ending, the end just kinda felt *bleh*.

    I think Metal Gear Solid is a pretty good movie based on a video game. Metal Gear (for the NES) was an excellent game. Metal Gear Solid, while technically a game, has more cut scenes than gameplay so should count more as a movie.

    Looking back though, Mortal Kombat the movie is nothing compared to the Double Dragon or Super Mario Brothers movies. Then you have the unholy grail of video game movies, Wing Commander.

    Somehow I doubt we'll have a good video game based movie anything soon. Even though we have Metroid, Doom and Splinter Cell movies in production. The problem is that movies and games tell stories in completely different formats, so it's not easy to convert from one to the other.

    I would love to see a Fallout or X-Com based movie (or better yet a Battlestar Galctica quality series, although preferably on HBO, Showtime or any other channel with a large budget).

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    Next year's Silent Hill movie might buck the trend. The games themselves are very strong on story, with the emphasis on finding out what is motivating the characters, and what secrets they hide. That, and doomladen atmosphere. A lot of very talented people are involved in the project, including the original games team, so it could be very interesting.

    As for X-Com - a part of me likes the idea. But it is a game rather than a story. Improving the stats of your teams, keeping your bases financially solvent and so on make for good gameplay but are hardly going to grip cinema-goers. Capturing an alien and discovering their origins might be interesting, but the whole abduction thing is so twentieth century! By the time the film adaptation has been tweaked to make it interesting, it will bear little resemblance to the games.

  5. #5
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    There are those that like the Resident Evil films, of course. I've not seen any of them, but they've got Milla Jovovich (incredible in The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc) in them.

    Does Alien vs Predator count? Based on games/comics that were themselves based on films? Anyway - it was rubbish.

  6. #6
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    I aint seen anything good yet....would like to see a movie made out of the Starcraft series. You could play that game just for the storyline.

    with regards

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    I'd really like to see a film made of Indiana Jones and the Fate Of Atlantis! Once mooted as a potential story for the forthcoming Indy IV film, in fact. I doubt that would count as a film from a game so much, though.

    Adventure games are the ones that tend to be more story driven, so why are people tending to make films based on action films?! Makes no sense. Beneath A Steel Sky - now there's a film asking to be made. Likewise Grim Fandango, or the Monkey Island series (of which a film was discussed by Lucasfilm at one stage years ago).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lianachan
    Adventure games are the ones that tend to be more story driven, so why are people tending to make films based on action films?! Makes no sense.
    Silent Hill is an adventure game series!

    Quote Originally Posted by Lianachan
    Beneath A Steel Sky - now there's a film asking to be made.
    It's a lovely game, but I can't see it working as a film. It's very much driven by its puzzles and unexpected responses - such as asking a live band if they know anything by Joy Division! Other than that, the story is very much generic cyberpunk lite. Sure, you could make a good film inspired by it, and which borrows elements from it, but there's no point in a faithful adaptation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lianachan
    Likewise Grim Fandango, or the Monkey Island series (of which a film was discussed by Lucasfilm at one stage years ago).
    How appropriate - you fight like a cow!

    Er, sorry...

    I think a Monkey Island film would be redundant, given how similar the games are to Pirates of the Carribean. And Grim Fandango, a film noir set in the afterlife, is a remarkable idea for a game, but not so remarkable for a film, I reckon. "Yeah, it's like The Big Sleep, only they're reaping souls!" "Hmm. Soul reaping. Isn't there a TV series that does that?" "Yes, that's Dead Like Me, but this one is all moody 40s style. Imagine Bogart and Bacall." "Okay. Explain to me again why they have to be dead people?"

    These are my objections, but who knows, they might work anyway.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Beardsley
    Silent Hill is an adventure game series!
    Yup, I know! I wasn't saying anything about that series at all - my points were general. The fact that this adaptation may work supports my main point, which is that the best adaptations would surely be made from adventure games instead of action games.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Beardsley
    These are my objections, but who knows, they might work anyway.
    The points, although good when considered individually, all seem to hinge on any films being made as faithful conversions of the games - but none of the films based on action films have been like that (after all, they can't be). The important part of having the characters being dead in Grim Fandango would be for the connections to the South American mythos that it's based on. Feel free to substitute any other adventure games with strong stories instead, like Silent Hill!, the examples I gave were merely the first that popped into my head.

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    Mortal Kombat was watchable. Its sequel was most definitely not.

    And actually, Final Fantasy does relate to the series quite well. There are no repeat characters (except the name Cid/Sid), just like the game series which are not direct sequels of each other.

    The survival of the people rests on ending the damage to the planet (III, VII), manifest by a meteor strike (VII) , which is threatening to kill the spirit of the planet (VII). The local military is misused by a high ranking officer for personal gain (II, III, VII, VIII). To end the threat, eight spirits must be located and collected (II). No, the movie is pure Square through and through.

    Street Fighter: Awful
    Wing Commander: Even worse
    Mario Brothers: Thankfully, I had the good sense to skip this one.

    I don't have high hopes for Doom.

    Grim Fandango might have made a neat (animated) mini-series. One year per show. Although the chain-smoking might be problematic.
    "Words that make questions may not be questions at all."
    - Neil deGrasse Tyson, answering loaded question in ten words or less
    at a 2010 talk MCed by Stephen Colbert.

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    does anyone else grieve that Raul Julia's final movie was Street Fighter?
    _____________________________________________
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    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren
    does anyone else grieve that Raul Julia's final movie was Street Fighter?
    Very much so. Same with Phil Hartman and Small Soldiers. At least John Ritter was in Bad Santa.

    I'm also kind of worried about Doom. Why isn't it on Mars, and why the hell isn't it Hell?!? Argh!

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    Around every corner.

    Behind every door.

    In every closet.

    Awaits

    DOOM.

    Can you believe this? They actually had flashlights stuck to the guns. But they couldn't do that for the game. If there are no monster closets, wall strafing at 50 miles an hour, or shooting exploding barrels and crates to find medical supplies, the movie will suck.

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    Oh BTW, they're also making a movie adaptation of a wonderful game in Greek mythology, where the hero Kratos sets out to kill Ares, the Greek god of war, in revenge. The game was a PS2 hit and since Uwe Boll's name hasn't been mentioned in the same vicinity as the movie yet, it might just be worth watching.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lianachan
    [Various interesting points, notably basing films on adventure games rather than action games.]
    (I hope you don't mind me summing up your points so abruptly, Lianachan.)

    I think there are two very distinct types of adventure game, although the types certainly can overlap.

    There is the problem-solving type - LIGHT LANTERN, GO NORTH, EXAMINE NUMERIC PAD, ENTER 1066.

    This sort of thing can offer some entertainment in a movie context - we can, for instance, watch two policemen attempt to measure out two litres of water when they have a 3 litre vessel and a 5 litre vessel. But it doesn't carry the film.

    The other type is the Personal Stake type, where the puzzles are a means to an end. In Silent Hill, it is your 7 year old daughter who has gone missing in an extremely hostile environment; in Silent Hill 2, it is your wife who is writing letters to you three years after she supposedly died. You do have to solve puzzles and fight monsters in order to find out the answers to your questions, but the game is about the answers rather than the means of finding them.

    Any thoughts on this would be welcome.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Beardsley
    (I hope you don't mind me summing up your points so abruptly, Lianachan.)
    On the contrary, your summary is quite excellent!

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Beardsley
    Any thoughts on this would be welcome.
    I agree wholeheartedly. Admittedly, this is not a position which makes continued debate very interesting!

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    I'd like to see Kingdom Hearts as a movie.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Samara
    I'd like to see Kingdom Hearts as a movie.
    That would be interesting. A disney movie, made about a game, which is centred around disney movies.

    Different.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Beardsley
    As for X-Com - a part of me likes the idea. But it is a game rather than a story. Improving the stats of your teams, keeping your bases financially solvent and so on make for good gameplay but are hardly going to grip cinema-goers. Capturing an alien and discovering their origins might be interesting, but the whole abduction thing is so twentieth century! By the time the film adaptation has been tweaked to make it interesting, it will bear little resemblance to the games.
    I think, if done properly, X-Com would make a good TV mini-series.

    It might take a dozen hours or so to play out, but here's a rough estimate of how it might go:

    First couple of episodes: Initalize discovery of UFOs due to increased activity and hostility. Failed attempts by various governments to defend themselves.

    Episode about the formation of X-Com and training. Introduce a few main characters along with some red-shirts.

    Few episodes showing X-Com's initial successes against the smaller UFOs. Some alien technology is recovered and reverse engineered giving the troops better equipment. Culiminates in X-Com destroying the first Alien Base discovered (lightly defended).

    Some episodes showing the alien response. Using their advanced technology, the humans are put on the defense. Heavy casualties all over including the loss of major X-Com facilities and maybe even some major characters.

    Final few episodes: Humanity is on the verge of annihilation. X-Com has managed to reverse engineer major pieces of alien technology, including Elerium powered spacecraft. However overwhelming numbers are keeping them from doing more than hit and run attacks against what is increasingly becoming an occupied planet.

    Final episode (or two): Final X-Com base is discovered. The few remaining X-Com soliders capable of combat escape in a newly built Avenger mere hours before the base is destroyed. They decide to strike back at what is believed to be the enemy HQ at Cydonia on Mars. Of course the succeed, but at the cost of all their lives. Scroll some text about how the aliens soon run out of Elerium and without their advanced technology become easy pickings for the remaining human forces.


    Of course, I'm sure someone can do better than that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wedgebert
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Beardsley
    As for X-Com - a part of me likes the idea. But it is a game rather than a story. Improving the stats of your teams, keeping your bases financially solvent and so on make for good gameplay but are hardly going to grip cinema-goers. Capturing an alien and discovering their origins might be interesting, but the whole abduction thing is so twentieth century! By the time the film adaptation has been tweaked to make it interesting, it will bear little resemblance to the games.
    I think, if done properly, X-Com would make a good TV mini-series.
    It was called UFO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn
    It was called UFO. :D
    Which of course inspired the original game.

    There's nothing wrong in itself with wedgebert's ideas, but a film or TV series has to have a lot more - well-drawn characters, interesting interactions between them (including maybe a "will they won't they?" romance), mystery, surprises, plot twists and so on. Now you could say, "Yeah, but you can have all that too!" And you'd be right, of course. But achieving these things is the hard task - and if you can do it, then that's why viewers will watch it. The X-COM details themselves can be tweaked or ditched as desired. "What's this Cydonia?" "It's a place on Mars." "Mars? We've just explored Mars in real life. Make it a hyperspatial gateway to somewhere else. Now, elerium - viewers aren't going to like that name..."

    Of course, an updating of UFO would be nice - one with an ongoing storyline with numbered episodes rather than the present situation in which broadcasters typically show Court Martial after Kill Straker.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Beardsley
    This sort of thing can offer some entertainment in a movie context - we can, for instance, watch two policemen attempt to measure out two litres of water when they have a 3 litre vessel and a 5 litre vessel. But it doesn't carry the film.
    Well, that's easy. It's measuring out four liters when you've only got three-liter and five-liter vessels that makes you think.

    And, BTW, they used that in Die Hard with a Vengeance.
    Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn

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    Quote Originally Posted by SeanF
    Well, that's easy. It's measuring out four liters when you've only got three-liter and five-liter vessels that makes you think.

    And, BTW, they used that in Die Hard with a Vengeance.
    Yes - I was referring to that film, although I have not actually seen it!

    Anyway, it's easy. Fill the big one. Pour from big to small until small is full. That means you have 2 litres left in the big one. Empty the small one and pour the 2 litres into it. Fill the big one again and pour from it into the small one until the small one is full. The small one only had room for 1 litre, so you've reduced the amount in the big one from 5 to 4. Done!

    Dontcha just love it when threads go OT?

    A bit more on topic - does anyone else here hold a lasting fondness for text-only adventures? If so, we could start a new thread to reminisce about unfair puzzles, daft scenarios, games that kill you every other move... and of course the wonderful ones that worked really well.

    One game I read about (but didn't actually play) had a location where there was a pile of bones. You needed one of the bones to progress, but, because of a mistake on the programmer's part, TAKE BONE wouldn't work - you had to type TAKE BOME. Great playtesting!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Normandy6644
    I'm also kind of worried about Doom. Why isn't it on Mars
    In case you've not seen the latest trailer, it IS on Mars again. No news on Hell yet, however.

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    Sigh...i kinew it. A great premise like doom and the screw it up. Whats so wrong about a invasion from hell? whats so bad about deamons? is it to PC? Do they not want to offend the Demon-Americans? Why, oh why mutants?

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