Lights, Camera, Action Game!

Wall-E GameIf there’s one thing that probably boils over the tempers of many a gaming fanboy out there, it’s games that are based on movies. Compared to the excruciatingly painful development cycle of many games that take years and many delays to make, games based on movies seem to take only a few months. They also come out right in sync with the rest of the movie merchandise, creating yet another effective way to generate revenue for that “blockbuster” of a movie. I have to say, if there was any way to sneak in another definition for “milking the franchise”, this would be it.

Gamers hate these kinds of games, because they are basically shills that might have the development polish of a six-year old with a crayon. Oh, how they lament over the fact that such crappy games are allowed to exist while projects that take their time don’t get the same level of recognition. But enough about Duke Nukem Forever fans.

I personally think these aren’t so bad.

I mean, one thing is that they allow people to play an immersive experience with their favorite movie they’ve gone to see in theaters 12 times. In a form of escapism, these dedicated troopers eagerly buy these movie games and take them home, to live out their fantasy of being Spiderman or Batman, or that adorable little Wall-E robot. Sure, the novelty wears off after a grand total of 20 minutes into the game when you realize there are more bugs than there are in a cheap-ass motel. Why deny them a dream that will never be achieved?

Another is that they’re disarming to those people who think video games raise children to be violent little hellions with tattoos at 8 years old. Do you really think a movie studio who sinks a boatload of cash into the development of these little gems wants a crapstorm on their hands because their project is too edgy? No way. They’d rather have something developed that shills their product. Feel free to use any movie game as a shining example of how all video games are not like GTA IV, because one of those “concerned parents” is probably not going to know the difference between a game coded by an actual studio and one coded by the director’s nephew and their college friends.

And let’s not forget the myriad of uses these movie games could have on top ten worst games lists, games you would never ever buy, and games that belong in a garbage disposal. C’mon guys – you can only cite E.T. for the Atari so many times as an example of how not to make a game. You need originality, and the glut of awfully crappy movie games that make you play through sequences that aren’t even in the film is a goldmine.

So the next time you see one of these movie games in the bargain bin of $9.99 and up, don’t throw it down in disgust. Pick it up, love it, caress it, and give it some attention before laughing your ass off and putting it back. Like everything bad, they have a use.

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