Two Watchmen video games on the way

July 23, 2008 at 12:01 pm Leave a comment

Alright, so the headline is a little misleading, but I didn’t know how else to put it. Warner Brothers execs. have decided to forgo the usually terrible video game adaptation for the March release of “Watchmen,” instead opting to develop two smaller, high-quality games that will be available for download on the internet. The first will be released to coincide with the movie’s theatrical run, and the second will drop along side the “Watchmen” DVD. When I first heard this idea, I immediately thought of those crappy cellphone games and dismissed the games as lame money-making ploys.

But then I started thinking about it, and I really think Warner Brothers is onto something here. Most movie-to-video-game transitions are bumpy at best, with the production time on the game cut so severely (to make sure it comes out in accordance with the movie) that it sacrifices the integrity and quality of the game. With this plan — which allows the game to forgo all the distribution, packaging and disc-related hoopla — the games’ producers  can focus on actually making a good game, albeit a smaller one, to keep the fans happy, instead of pumping out a subpar adaptation just to pad their ever-growing wallets. And according to Variety, the guys behind the plan had a similar thought process to mine:

Warner is undoubtedly hoping that the new model it’s testing with “Watchmen” will let it avoid (a subpar adaptation) and put out high-quality games that will appeal to the large number of videogame players who are fans of the classic comicbook and will likely come out to see the film.

If successful, the studio could also produce more installments following the initial two. It may also use the downloadable videogame tie-in model for future pics.

“Watchmen,” which is being made by Danish developer Deadline Games, will feature film’s characters Rorschach and Nite Owl in an action title that’s likely to earn an M rating. It will be available to download on PCs, Sony’s PlayStation 3 and Microsoft’s Xbox 360.

So, I applaud Warner Brothers for this. It’s good to see execs thinking with their heads as opposed to their bank accounts. There’s no question that there’s good money in video games, and almost all of the big Hollywood productions as of late have tried to take advantage of that with quickly produced games. I’m glad to see big movies like this and “The Dark Knight” (which somehow escaped the video game trap. There isn’t, and there won’t be, a game coming out for that movie) think outside the box in terms of video game adaptations. If you have a good idea for a game, and you have sufficient time to produced it, then be my guest. But if you’re rushing to crank out a lame game, don’t bother.

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Entry filed under: comic book movies, Warner Bros, Warner Brothers, Watchmen. Tags: , .

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