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The best video games based on movies

In the past, video games based on movies have generally been bad. Superman 64 and Aliens: Colonial Marines are two prime examples, but there are countless others. Thankfully, developers have taken a different direction in recent years. Rather than simply releasing a game as a marketing tactic for an upcoming movie, developers are creating separate experiences set in the world of a film but with a unique story to tell. In this guide, we’ve rounded up the best video games based on movies.

These don’t necessarily have to follow the same plot as a specific film but could also be simply set in the same film universe.

Alien: Isolation

Alien: Isolation
85 %
Platforms Linux, PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Mac, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Genre Adventure
Developer The Creative Assembly
Publisher Feral Interactive, Sega
Release October 06, 2014
Alien: Isolation is a pure survival horror game. Instead of throwing you into an arena with some guns and a whole lot of Xenomorphs, Isolation focuses on, well, isolation. You play as Ripley’s daughter 15 years after the events of the first Alien film. After discovering that a flight recorder documenting Ripley’s fate is hidden on a Seegson Corporation ship, you’re sent to find it. Just like Alien, your goal isn’t to go in guns blazing. Encounters with a Xenomorph will be brief and filled with anxiety, as you attempt to outrun the beast. Most of Alien: Isolation is focused on sneaking around tight corridors and using various tools to deter the creature, not defeat it, perfectly capturing the spirit of the source material.
Alien: Isolation - E3 Trailer (Official)

Marvel's Spider-Man

Marvel's Spider-Man
88 %
Platforms PlayStation 4
Genre Hack and slash/Beat 'em up, Adventure
Developer Insomniac Games
Publisher Sony Interactive Entertainment
Release September 07, 2018

Games that star the iconic wall-crawler have been hit or miss for years. For a hero as popular as Spider-Man, that always felt like a waste, especially considering how much potential there was to make a great game with his specific powers. Thankfully, the perfect developer was given the chance to make that game, and boy does it deliver. The swinging is near perfection, the combat fast and focused, and the story as gripping as any comic or film.

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
81 %
Platforms PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, Google Stadia
Genre Adventure
Developer Respawn Entertainment
Publisher Electronic Arts
Release November 15, 2019
There are a handful of good Star Wars games, but a lot more bad ones. Thankfully, Fallen Order fits in the former category. The game takes place between Episode III and Episode IV, or more accurately, between Episode III and the events of Star Wars Rebels. You play as Cal Kestis, a Jedi Padawan under the oppressive threat of the Great Jedi Purge. In a shift from most other Star Wars games, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order puts you in the shoes of an actual Jedi, fit with a customizable lightsaber and force powers. Throughout your adventure, you’ll travel to multiple planets, each fit with secrets, alternative paths, and optional boss battles.
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order — Official Reveal Trailer

Jurassic World Evolution

Jurassic World Evolution
67 %
Platforms PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Genre Simulator, Strategy
Developer Frontier Developments, Frontier Developments
Publisher Universal Pictures, Frontier Developments
Release June 11, 2018
Jurassic World Evolution is about the furthest thing you’d expect out of a Jurassic Park-inspired game. It’s a simulation game created by Frontier Developments, the same studio behind Planet Coaster and the recently released Planet Zoo. In the game, you run a dinosaur park spread across five islands. Thankfully, it’s not just a reskin of Planet Coaster. Evolution features voice acting from Jeff Goldblum, Bryce Dallas Howard, and B. D. Wong, and also focuses on three distinct skill trees: Science, Entertainment, and Security. Although dinosaur theme park simulation is an unlikely genre, it works well for Jurassic World: Evolution due to the fact that the game was developed by a master of the simulation genre.
Jurassic World Evolution - In-game Trailer

Middle-earth: Shadow of War

Middle-earth: Shadow of War
80 %
Platforms PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Genre Role-playing (RPG), Adventure
Developer Monolith Productions
Publisher WB Games
Release October 10, 2017
Like Star Wars, there are a lot of Lord of the Rings games, most of which aren’t very good. The two Middle-earth games, Shadow of Mordor and Shadow of War, don’t fit into that category, though. In both games, you play as Talion, a ranger whose spirit is infused with the elf lord Celebrimbor. Unsurprisingly, your goal is simply to stop Sauron. Middle-earth: Shadow of War is a prequel to the movies, and although the lore is interesting for LOTR fans, we’re including Shadow of War based on its mechanics. In the game, you’ll need to confront Sauron’s orc army. As you take out ranking members, others will step in to take their place, becoming more powerful in the process. No two playthroughs are exactly the same, as the enemies you make throughout your playthrough will be determined by who’s highest on your hit list.
Middle-earth: Shadow of War - Kraken Gameplay Walkthrough Trailer (Official)

GoldenEye 007

GoldenEye 007
86 %
Platforms Nintendo 64
Genre Shooter, Adventure
Developer Rare
Publisher Nintendo
Release August 23, 1997
GoldenEye 007 is the one exception to the “no movie tie-in” rule. Released in 1997 for the Nintendo 64, GoldenEye set in motion an era of split-screen shooting, as players bounced bullets off each other in a deathmatch arena. Nowadays, GoldenEye doesn’t feel quite as good as it did back in 1997. Still, its impact on gaming is undeniable. That doesn’t mean you should boot it back up, though. The Nintendo 64 isn’t the best platform for shooters, with its limited graphical fidelity and asinine controller design. Thankfully, it was released on the Nintendo Switch Online service, as well as a remaster for Xbox.
GoldenEye 007 - N64 Gameplay

John Wick Hex

John Wick Hex
64 %
Platforms PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Genre Simulator, Strategy, Turn-based strategy (TBS), Tactical
Developer Bithell Games
Publisher Good Shepherd Entertainment, Gambitious
Release October 08, 2019
John Wick Hex is a much more methodical experience than its source material. It’s a timeline strategy game where time stops so you can plan your next action. You’ll choose where you want to move and what actions you want to take, and once you do, time will resume. It turns out that you can’t be as badass as John Wick in real time, even in a video game. That aside, John Wick Hex still makes you feel like the Baba Yaga, with expertly crafted animations and neon-plastered scenery. Although a AAA studio could likely make a more visceral John Wick experience, Hex is still a solid, smaller title that offers a unique take on the six-year-old franchise.
John Wick Hex - Announcement Trailer

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
91 %
Platforms PC (Microsoft Windows), Xbox, Mac, Android, iOS, Nintendo Switch
Genre Role-playing (RPG), Adventure
Developer BioWare
Publisher LucasArts, Activision, Aspyr Media
Release July 15, 2003
At the time, pairing a multi-billion-dollar franchise like Star Wars with the developer of Neverwinter Nights and the Baldur’s Gate games seemed like it wouldn’t work. BioWare quickly proved that wasn’t the case, though. Knight of the Old Republic almost single-handedly proved that video games based on movies could offer depth and complexity. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic takes place in, well, the Old Republic, 4,000 years before the Galactic Empire rose to power. You play as a Jedi on a multi-planet quest to overthrow Darth Malak. Like the BioWare titles that came before Knights of the Old Republic, combat takes place over a series of rounds, with combat actions using the d20 system to determine if the action was successful or not.
KOTOR 1 Official Trailer

Mad Max

Mad Max
77 %
Platforms Linux, PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Mac, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Genre Shooter, Racing, Adventure
Developer Avalanche Studios
Publisher WB Games
Release September 01, 2015
Mad Max isn’t based on any particular film from the series, though it released shortly after Fury Road hit theaters. It’s an open world action-adventure game in the vein of Assassin’s Creed and Batman: Arkham Asylum. You play as Max Rockatansky, a former highway patrol officer in search of fuel for his Interceptor. Although Mad Max isn’t on the level as Arkham Asylum and the better Assassin’s Creed games, it’s still a decent experience. A core focus of the title is vehicular combat. As you make your way around the wasteland, you can find new items to outfit your vehicle, making it stronger, faster, and more deadly.
Mad Max - Walkthrough Trailer (Official)

Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed

Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed
Platforms PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre Shooter
Developer Illfonic
Publisher Illfonic
Release October 18, 2022
Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed is an asymmetrical multiplayer title with similar gameplay to Dead by Daylight. The five-player online matches feature four ghostbusters teaming up to try and catch the one player-controlled ghost. The busters need to try and catch the ghost before they fully haunt the location. The simple premise of Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed runs the risk of quickly becoming stale, but the various maps with multiple side quests for busters to complete and different ghost types overcome that hurdle. Completing these quests will give the busters a better chance of victory, plus XP to unlock new customization options.
Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed - Announce Trailer

Blair Witch

Blair Witch
76 %
Platforms PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Genre Adventure, Indie
Developer Bloober Team
Publisher Bloober Team
Release August 30, 2019
Released in 2019 without too much fanfare, Blair Witch features main character Ellis Lynch and his dog, Bullet. You play Ellis Lynch, a former police officer and military veteran searching for a missing child in the Black Hills Forest of Burkittsville, Maryland. Bullet plays an essential role in the game’s outcome as well.  Most of the Gameplay in Blair Witch is exploring the Black Hills Forest. As you get deeper into the woods, you encounter puzzles you have to solve. Meanwhile, Bullet leads you to scents, helps secure items, and even impacts your mental state. No spoilers here, but we will say that without Bullet, Ellis Lynch might suffer a horrific fate.
Blair Witch - E3 2019 Reveal Trailer

Editors' Recommendations

Jesse Lennox
Jesse Lennox loves writing, games, and complaining about not having time to write and play games. He knows the names of more…
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