Films That Should Produce VR Games
These are still the early days of virtual reality, and if you keep up with the news you can see that game developers are experimenting with everything the new format has to offer. We’ve already witnessed demonstrations of games across pretty much all genres and categories, which seems to promise a pretty bright future for VR. But one area that it feels like we’ve only just begun to explore is film-based gaming.
So far, there have mostly been VR experiences that are related to or reminiscent of films, rather than games directly based on film content. For instance, The Martian and Independence Day: Resurgence both produced cinematic VR experiences that fell somewhere between gaming and viewing. Meanwhile, the relatively recent game “Adrift” has been compared to Gravity, though it doesn’t actually include licensed material or any direct references.
But what about more clear-cut adaptations? These are undoubtedly on the horizon. While most of these games will likely come from future films we’ve yet to see, below we’ll look back at some great films that already exist that could make for surprising and excellent VR adaptations.
There’s already been some focus on sword fighting in VR, and it’s natural that this would be alluring to a lot of people. For instance, the prospect of getting into a lightsaber duel in VR has to be one of the more exciting possibilities out there (and rest assured, “Star Wars: Battlefront” is getting a virtual reality upgrade). But not all sword fighting has to be related to science fiction or technology. Keeping that in mind, you could argue Troy featured some of the most astonishing battle sequences and detailed settings of the 21st century.
Curiously, the film never inspired much in the way of gaming releases. However, an Achilles flash game that’s been around online for years might offer the best idea as to how this game could work: simply Achilles facing off against waves of adversaries. Embodying the demigod war hero played by Brad Pitt would be fun for a lot of fans, and handling countless Trojan warriors on the beaches and walls of Troy would be incredibly thrilling.
This is probably closer to what people have in mind for virtual reality gaming. Tron: Legacy, when it was released in 2010, earned a pretty mixed reception. But while most critics thought the film was mediocre, a lot of the positive recognition was for both the soundtrack and scenery — both of which could be used to great effect in a VR game. Just imagine finding yourself in the world of Tron zipping around in futuristic light-cycle competitions to the tune of the Daft Punk soundtrack that accompanied the film.
This is almost certainly not the sort of film most people have in mind for virtual reality, but it’s worth considering which gaming styles work well in VR. The online poker platforms have actually already come close to approximating VR with the implementation of live dealer gameplay, which involves looking (through your screen) at a flesh-and-bones human dealing blackjack or poker cards, or even spinning a roulette wheel. They haven’t gotten to live dealers yet, but VR developers have also already worked on poker gaming for headsets.
So, why not take the biggest poker film of all time and turn it into a poker VR game with a story attached? It wouldn’t take you through the whole film, and for the game to be effective there would have to be some added scenes and tournaments that Matt Damon and Co. didn’t actually play through in Rounders. But the general concept of this iconic poker story being brought to life in a way that allows you to do the actual poker playing is pretty exciting.
“The Incredible Hulk”
It may not be one of Marvel’s more popular films, but a VR game even loosely based on The Incredible Hulk could be pretty exciting. There are VR games that already experiment with putting players in high-speed vehicles, up in the air or on land. But there doesn’t appear to be a mainstream game that puts the player inside an actual character who can run fast, reach incredible heights, and is pretty much a giant. The chance to embody the Hulk would be amazing, and this somewhat forgotten early installment in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe would be a satisfying vehicle in which to do it.
These films are all relatively old at this point, so they’re unlikely to be tapped by developers. But each of these games would be a whole lot of fun, and if nothing else this can give you an idea for the potential of film-based games on virtual reality headsets long-term.[sam id=”2″ codes=”true”]