Videogame to movie translations don’t have the best reputation out there. That might change in 2018 and 2019 when a slew of new films based on games hit the theaters. Here’s a list of thirteen upcoming videogame-based movies, with number 1 being the biggest news of them all.
13. Tomb Raider
One of the earliest entries on this list is the upcoming Tomb Raider film adaptation starring Alicia Vikander as the iconic Lara Croft. The movie will be debuting March 16, 2018 and is promising to be more of an origin story than an action spectacular.
12. The Witcher
The Witcher series of videogames is based upon a popular Polish-language fantasy series of the same name and it is believed that these novels will provide much of the source material for the story. Geralt of Rivia’s adventures are known for their gore and grit and producer Lauren Schmidt Hissrich promises not to alter this in any substantive way.
11. Detective Pikachu
One stranger adaptation coming your way is Detective Pikachu a film being produced by Legendary Pictures and will star Ryan Reynolds in the lead role. The game upon which the movie will be based is about investigations into the activities of rogue Pokémon. It will be a CGI and live-action film hybrid instead of a purely animated experience.
Starring The Rock, who last appeared in the DOOM adaptation that was...lacking in its adaptation, to put it mildly, Rampage could be an awesome movie if it fully embraces the crazy premise underpinning the game. You won’t have to wait long to find out, it should be hitting theaters April 20, 2018.
*Not actual picture LOL*
9. Sonic the Hedgehog
Deadpool director Tim Miller is helming this 2019 film starring Sonic the Hedgehog and will be another live-action/CGI film like Detective Pikachu. No details on storyline yet but it should follow familiar Sonic tropes.
8. Ready Player One
Ready Player One is filled to the brim with videogame nostalgia and really almost requires a working knowledge of videogame history to appreciate its more nuanced aspects. That said, the film coming in March looks set to be a great picture and should be true to the novel source material. Coming from Steven Spielberg, Ready Player One could be one of the best videogame films of all time.
7. Castlevania: Season 2
After the positive reception of the first season on Netflix, Castlevania: Season 2 will follow the continuing story of Trevor Belmont and the other characters from the NES classic, Castlevania 3: Dracula’s Curse. It will return with an expanded 8 episode season rather than the all-too-brief four episode season Netflix delivered for series 1. The second season of Castlevania should debut later this year on Netflix.
It is kind of amazing that this super popular game has not had a film adaptation yet. That’s all about to change with a debut tentatively scheduled for 2019. Other concepts in the film space like Angry Birds debuted to relative success (and it is even getting a sequel) so there’s no concrete reason to think a Minecraft film won’t be equally or more compelling than that film. It will probably be presented in Minecraft’s iconic style and could mimic Minecraft: Story Mode in terms of narrative and execution.
5. Mega Man
This animated series coming to Cartoon Network in North America later this year will apparently feature a younger Mega Man and explore a narrative along these lines. New villains will be introduced alongside the game’s classic villains like Doctor Wiley and his robots. Conceptually it sounds interesting but it is perplexing as to whether this version of Mega Man is a robot or a person because of the whole “younger Mega Man” theme but here’s to hoping for the best!
4. Persona 5: The Animation
In the tradition of previous games in the series, Persona 5 will also receive a film adaptation, namely a lengthy series of animes, that will release later this Fall. Persona games are known for their compelling stories and Atlus typically follows up mainline game releases with accompanying manga and anime to elucidate some of the plot. While the games typically have multiple pathway choices and varying character alignments, the anime and manga tend to present a pseudo-cannon take on the whole experience. Definitely filled with spoilers, the anime and manga are not for people who have not completed the game (which is long). If you can’t finish Persona 5 though and you want to know the storyline, the anime films will be perfect for you.
3. Angry Birds 2
The sequel to the first Angry Birds, Angry Birds 2 should be more of the same and it’s coming your way in September 2019. If the first film perplexed you then this one will do no better at dissuading you of the film’s central absurdity but if you’re a fan of the franchise then you should be thrilled.
2. Costume Quest 2018
Double Fine’s Costume Quest is in the works in a collaboration between Amazon and Frederator Studios whose other work includes The Fairly OddParents and Adventure Time. Costume Quest should be in good hands and will probably be a popular film because of its quirky but cute premise.
1. Super Mario Bros.
The biggest name on this list is also not a newcomer to the scene. The original Super Mario Bros. film was an interesting film when it came out and probably wasn’t that bad a film in many respects. But it wasn’t what people were expecting and it definitely wasn’t the Super Mario Bros. people had come to know and love. Now that Mario is even more of a household name than he was then, an animated feature makes the most sense and that is exactly what is coming our way in a movie co-produced by Shigeru Miyamoto and Chris Meledandri and developed by both Nintendo and Illumination. No release date was announced, but we can expect this film to come out sooner rather than later.