TV shows based off of video games are nothing new. From the 1990s to the early 2000s, there were tons of shows enjoyed by boys and girls alike such as Sonic the Hedgehog, Mega Man, Super Mario World, Kirby: Right Back At Ya!, and even Viva Pinata!. Despite these names, it's not often that these types of shows are actually brought to TV. In fact, it seems like the only video game show that is around nowadays is the Pokémon anime.
The fact of the matter is that there is a near infinite amount of fresh and unique content just waiting to be brought from consoles to regular cable TV. From shows that will leave the kids giggling to epic series that will bring about man-tears, here are five video game series that would be guaranteed to find a cosy home on our TV screens.
For kids, this is a no brainer. Patapon sees players create music from mystical drums using the face buttons. Each of these drums produces a distinct sound such as "pata" or "don." As the player hits each button, the tiny, one-eyed Patapons vocally repeat the corresponding command in unison. Depending on the combination of sounds, the Patapons will march forward, retreat, defend, and attack.
There are also cooks, musicians, and smiths that need the player's instructions to improve the army. Seeing as how this is a musical game filled with charming creatures, it would be a great attraction for children who are often absorbed by shows such as The Wiggles.
Also consider the potential involvement that kids could have in the show. Taking some inspiration from another popular children's show, the Patapon princess could ask the viewer what command he or she has for the army when they encounter an obstacle. While the show would obviously be predetermined, encouraging the kids to verbally give the command would be an immersive experience that they would absolutely enjoy.
Another great series for kids, LittleBigPlanet would bring a wonderful combination of
humor, charm, and creativity. The hand-sewn world of LBP would be another great chance to encourage a child's involvement in the mostly due to the game's interaction with the environment.
Just like how the series' creation mode taught us some about physics and electricity, LBP could do the same. Parents often demand that the shows their kids watch have some educational value, and LBP would be a series that could do just that. Combine this potential with the series' adorable sense of humor and aesthetics, and you have a recipe for another great children's show. You could even add in the charm of Stephen Fry for good measure.
Mega Man X
Adapting the Mega Man X franchise would not only help quench the long lasting Mega Man drought, but also serve a darker, more mature story for the now grown fan base it has.
Unlike the original Mega Man which was about a little robot standing up to a mad scientist, Mega Man X is about large scale war and discrimination. With Reploids (robots) turning criminal (Maverick) by either choice or Sigma Virus, there could be many twists and turns for a TV adaption. Who is the enemy and who is your friend? Have they been infected yet? This type of paranoia was a focus at one point in the series where the heroes X and Zero both suspected one another of turning to the other side. This led to a violent confrontation.
The series could even travel into the Mega Man Zero games which take place 100 years after the X series and after the later introduced Cyber Elf wars. Zero, who has awoken from a forced slumber, teams up with Ceil, a human who is trying to protect Reploids from Neo-Arcadia. In this setting, there is a massive energy shortage that has led humans to destroy Reploids without a second thought. This slaughter is led by none other than X himself and his Four Guardians.
As the series progressed, elements of the story even touched on the issue of identity. Fans will also be happy to know that a familiar mad scientist under the name Weil makes a strong appearance in the last two titles. As a TV series, the X and Zero franchises would be able to be more than just a robot battle royal, but also a story with deep meaning.
Shadow of the Colossus
In order to keep the show genuine to the game, there would have to be very little dialogue from the Wanderer. In his journey to resurrect his wife, the Wanderer is alone with his faithful horse with only a mysterious voice that leads him to his targets. However, there still needs to be dialogue to keep the viewer both interested and informed. Dialogue could mostly be in "flash backs" that would provide the background information of the Wanderer's origins. Looking into his past could explain how he met his wife, how they fell in love, and what caused her passing. It would also be great to see hints at what kind of society the couple came from other than the mystic and his guards who want to stop the Wanderer.
Other great questions we could finally see answered would concern the origins of the cursed land the Wanderer is exploring and the Colossi themselves. How did he learn of the cursed lands? Were they always cursed and secluded? What are the true origins of demon guiding the Wanderer? However, in order to keep an air of mystery as the game did, none of these questions should have a definitive answer. Similar to the TV series Lost, there should be enough left for the viewer to draw his own interpretations.
To also help make up for dialogue there should be a heavy focus on atmosphere and symbolism. Shadow of the Colossus could likely be filmed in New Zealand like The Lord of the Rings to provide the many diverse areas presented in the game. For symbolism, things need to be a bit clearer than shadows, white birds, and a horned baby. That's not to say that these symbols are not bad, but their messages aren't necessarily understood.
The ending of the series should also connect to ICO, the prequel. The "true" ending after the credits roll could show horned boy "years later" being taken to the prison, breaking out of his cage, and finding Princess Yorda. As mentioned earlier, this ending would be in the interpretation of the fans more so than the producer and writers.
A more mature franchise for sure but definitely the best choice for TV. The story of
Metal Gear is a complex story of honor, betrayal, moral dilemma, and a future that could have been. In many ways it is already a masterpiece as a standalone video game series.
Many of the subjects within Metal Gear revolve around issues that are both controversial and relevant such as nuclear deterrents, the tactics and politics of war, creating the perfect soldier and weapon, and the cost of peace. Is there true peace after victory? Are there lines to creating a solder that should not be crossed? Does the theory of nuclear deterrent really work? These questions and more are just some of the moral dilemmas featured throughout the series. Of course there is also the espionage, cloning, red herrings, giant, walking robots that launch nukes, and insane action that would make Jason Bourne jealous.
While the series always had impossible elements in its story, Kojima is an expert at making them believable within the franchise. In reality, half of the script writer's job is already done for them. And while the story may appear to be convoluted, it's by no means impossible to follow.