More Misses than Hits – Video Game Movies

Lothar and Garona from Warcraft: The Beginning | Image courtesy of United International Pictures
Lothar and Garona from Warcraft: The Beginning | Image courtesy of United International Pictures

The video game community is all over it with fans tearing in joy as they see the world of Azeroth come to life. Yes, I am talking about the recent video game turned movie, Warcraft: The Beginning. All over the worth, fans of one of Blizzard’s beloved franchise finally got to see the war between the orcs and humans explode onto big screen – and it was a sight to behold! Yet the reception from critics and non-gamers were anything more than “meh”.

Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War has crossed the $100 million mark for opening day and preview earnings | mages courtesy of The Walt Disney Company (Southeast Asia) Pte Ltd

Warcraft: The Beginning is not the first and probably will not be the last of video games turned into movies. Sure the games have large to almost cult followings but somehow they just do not do well enough as compared to other “conversations” such as comics and books. I am sure no one is going to argue that Marvel’s movie entries and of course Harry Potter didn’t bring in the cash.

Other noteworthy examples would include Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within which boasted incredible graphics and a story with potential to rival its game counter parts and of course Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time which had the adventure platform spirit of the games built in. Even the Tomb Raider series had a big name with Angelina Jolie playing Lara Croft also didn’t make it that big (in fact a reboot looks to be in the works). Sure there are those that see a whole series being made like Resident Evil but somehow making a movie out of a video game is just not a good idea.

Blizzard’s latest First Person Shooter has seen over 7 million players since it’s recent launch

Talking to a few gamer friends, the topic came up about video games movie and one possible reason is that the very essence of a video game just cannot be brought onto the big screen – The Interactivity. Good games are those that not only transport the gamer into the game world but also interacts well with the gamer. From First Person Shooters to Role Playing Games, these require the gamers to take part and do something. Movies on the other hand just require you to sit back, relax and enjoy a feast for the eyes.

Maybe this is why video game movies that do well choose to make sure of the game world settings and craft out something else rather than a lame rehash of the same story line that has user input to move it along. I mean sure the epic battles between humans and orcs would make brilliant fight scenes but you just got to have more than that.

Well the video game movie release is not going to end with two more in the works, Assassin’s Creed and now we hear The Division is going to get the same treatment as well. Both offer a game world rich and full for a creative mind to take advantage of to turn into a script. Hopefully they will fare better than the rest and offer something for both gamers and non-gamers to enjoy.

by Kenneth Wong

© POPCulture Online 2016

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