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8 Movies That Should Be Video Games (Mobile Version)

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(Click here for the normal version)

These are eight of our favorite movies that we wish were video games—unusual video games, that is. It’s easy to take Westerns and war films and make them into typical games, but some of these aren’t your usual fare.

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Spirited Away

I’d love to see any Hayao Miyazaki story as a video game,* but Spirited Away, the tale of a girl trapped in a spirit world, is one of my favorites. The bathhouse makes for an intriguing setting where stealth, puzzles, and minigames—cooking, cleaning, dragon-riding, exploring, etc.—would all fit in thematically. The player might even have to rearrange and build parts of the bathhouse in order to get around.

*Ni No Kuni is a Studio Ghibli film, but Miyazaki himself was not involved.

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Casablanca

This one might not strike you as an obvious choice, but Casablanca as a video game would be a great way to explore the history of WWII era Europe and Africa. Players would have to ferry documents and uncover secrets, figure out who to trust and who to avoid, and watch how those relationships are affected by the war.

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The Dark Crystal

I’m surprised no one has picked this one up yet—it’s a classic from the early 1980s, with all the trappings of a fantastic video game. The movie stars Jim Henson puppets, which could lend the game a different aesthetic from the norm. This is a fantasy story unlike any other.  It would be a great diversion from the usual Orcs vs. Humans games.

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The Secret of Kells

This animated film would make an evocative adventure RPG exploring Celtic illuminated manuscript and myth. Players might have to fill in designs and solve puzzles in the art in order to progress.

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Josie and the Pussycats

I’d love to see a game that’s a mash-up between relationship sim and Rock Band. You’d have to forge and preserve friendships while rocking out in cute outfits—I would’ve loved playing this in middle school.

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Pacific Rim

This one might seem pretty obvious, but the concept is perfect for co-op play. Two people in the room have to work in conjunction as the double pilots of their giant, customizable mechs, fighting for the freedom and safety of future Earth.

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The Land Before Time

A sort of stealth game where baby dinosaurs have to hide and run from the Sharp Tooth while gathering tree stars for themselves and their friends. Your guide would be the memory of your mother, who’d died to protect you—bring tissues.

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Seven Samurai

The toughest thing about making this famous story into a video game would be preserving the emotional elements while playing for strategy. Players would direct seven hero units to keep a town safe from bandits; perhaps the characters’ personal struggles would get in the way of the player’s design, but make for more engaging and empathetic gameplay in the end.

What if your favorite films were made into games? How would you do it? Let us know in the comments!

 

Tamora Pierce

6 Books That Should Be Video Games

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When you think about it, not too many books have been made into video games. Sure, there are a number of Alice in Wonderland games, and the independently produced The Great Gatsby  flash game earned a brief spot in the limelight after going viral a couple of years ago. And let’s not forget the successful Nancy Drew video game series by Her Interactive, which is produced in our neighbor city of Bellevue, Wash. Read More

10 Games for Your Space-Obsessed Kid (mobile version)

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Are your kids absolutely crazy about space?

Space-themed games could pique their interest and let them explore genre-specific themes. But where do you start?

The good news is, there are way too many space games for me to name them all! The bad news is, well, the same. But don’t let the huge market intimidate you. Here’s a selection of awesome space games to pass on to your kids.

(Read the original here!)

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10 Great Male Role Models for Teenagers (Mobile Version)

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A few days ago we did a post on female role models in video games. To follow up, here are 10 male role models. As before, we hope these characters can serve as inspiration to both young men and women.

Many of these games are rated T for Teen or M for Mature, so make sure to check out our library entries on them before deciding if the game is right for your teenager.

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Tomb Raider

10 Fantastic Female Role Models for Teenagers (Mobile Version)

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(Click here for the regular version)

These are some of our favorite female role models in gaming. That is, women we want to emulate–women we wouldn’t mind our teens (girls and boys) looking up to. Many of these games are rated T for Teen or M for Mature, so make sure to check out our library entries on them before deciding if the game is right for your teenager.

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Commander Jane Shepard (Mass Effect)

Shepard is a commander, member of the special forces, leader of her crew, and ultimately the savior of the galaxy. She is defined by the quality of her leadership and the choices she makes. She can lead through fear or through compassion, but either way, she serves as a guide and beacon of hope for her people.

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Amaterasu (Ookami)

Amaterasu, named for the Japanese sun goddess, is…well, she’s a wolf. But she’s also caring, opinionated, and willing to go out of her way to help those who need it, even at cost to herself. Amaterasu is intelligent, though she has a short attention span–she’ll fall asleep if something bores her.

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Lara Croft (Tomb Raider)

Lara is one of the most prolific characters in gaming, and boy has she changed since her conception. The new Lara Croft is young, but she is resilient, stubborn, and tough beyond measure. She’ll stop at nothing to rescue her best friend. She’s also an archaeologist.

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Queen Tyrande Whisperwind and the Night Elves (Warcraft)

Tyrande is the queen of the Night Elves, a race of people whose women are warriors and whose men are scholars who spend most of their time sleeping (it’s a religious thing).Tyrande is just and powerful, and protects her people against a myriad of threats without compromising her ethical core. The Night Elves are also staunch environmentalists.

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Aveline (Dragon Age II)

Aveline is a former soldier who works her way up to the Captain of the Guard due to her compassion, morals, and skill with sword and shield. Losing her husband early on doesn’t compromise her ability to lead. Although Aveline is awkward in matters of the heart, her devotion to the guards and city in her care is evident.

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Chell (Portal)

Chell is a test subject; a silent protagonist who is determined to escape the labyrinth of Aperature Science. She throws off insults and jabs to her character with ease. When she is met with flames instead of cake, she calmly proceeds to utilize her intelligence to escape the situation. Chell’s tenacity is second to none.

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Alyx Vance (Half Life 2)

Alyx is a talented hacker, programmer, and engineer. She has a great sense of humor, a friendly personality, and a calm exterior during tense situations. She also has skill in firearms. Alyx makes for an invaluable ally in a post-apocalyptic setting, and maybe more than that–she is a friend.

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Faith (Mirror’s Edge)

Faith is a reformed thief and parkour expert (also known as free-running) working to undermine the totalitarian government that threatens her and her family. She begins investigating a murder in order to clear her sister’s name, proving her skill in detective work. Faith’s strength doesn’t lie in combat, but rather agility, stealth, speed, and intelligence.

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Liara T’Soni (Mass Effect)

Liara, a member of the long-lived Asari alien species, is sweet and motherly. She’s also a talented scientist and historian–one of the best in the galaxy, if not the best. Bonus: She’s pretty good with a handgun.

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Ellie (The Last of Us)

Ellie may be only 14, but her toughness, determination, and optimism in the face of every evil the world throws at her is unparalleled. She has a pretty awful potty mouth, but zombies (and being 14) could do that to a person.

I would like to note here that there are a lot of great female characters who aren’t on this list. We’d love to hear your feedback on who you think we missed!

Note: Top 10 male role models coming soon!

Here are the games we’ve reviewed in our library. The rest will be added shortly:

Mass Effect 

Warcraft 

The Last of Us 

Portal

Tomb Raider

Dragon Age 2