Sherlock: Murdered to DeathNowadays the gaming world is a pretty predictable world to be a part of. This includes the annual release of such games as Call of Duty and FIFA, the regular up-cycling of games barely off the supermarket shelves (i.e. State of Decay and The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim), as well as the fact that the majority of movie and TV show tie-ins are almost always bad.

Now in regard to that latter point, the companion video game for Steven Spielberg’s E.T. was blamed for the demise of Atari and the near-fatal collapse of the video game industry, circa 1983. E.T. cartridges were eventually buried en-masse in a New Mexico landfill until their exhumation in 2014. That said, however, a movie, a book, or a TV license isn't always a curse. Luckily there are some notable exceptions to the rule. Here's our look at some truly great games inspired by cinema.

Dune II

Dune was a 1965 Frank Herbert book before it was made into an impossibly complex movie about mysticism, war, and the eternal struggle for control of melange or “spice”, a type of life-preserving drug. Dune II likewise deserves a mention simply because it’s the forefather of the real-time strategy genre, a niche perhaps better known as the home of the Command & Conquer franchise. Dune II is also a great game, if cumbersome by modern standards.

GoldenEye 007

Arguably the best multiplayer first-person shooter (FPS) ever made, GoldenEye 007 was a tie-in to the 1995 film of the same name. Primarily released on the Nintendo 64, the game was significant for a number of different reasons, chief of which was its success on consoles (FPS started out on PC with the ultra-violent blaster, Doom). GoldenEye also pioneered the zoomable sniper rifle and graphical features like transparencies.

Sherlock: Murdered to Death

Sherlock: Murdered to Death is a 5-reel, 15-payline slot machine from mFortune, and is one of the surprisingly few games based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous detective. The app features two minigames (Find the Lady and Clueless, the second of which guarantees a win) and a £5 free play for new sign-ups. As a British brand, mFortune is unique in the casino industry for letting fans of its mobile slots pay by phone bill.

Alien: Isolation

Ridley Scott’s 2013 movie tie-in, Aliens: Colonial Marines, featuring the Xenomorph, was such a bad video game that it landed Sega and Gearbox in court on false advertising charges. Yet in stark contrast to this, Alien: Isolation, released a year later, received a much warmer welcome than it's predecessor, simply because it managed to instill the same kind of fear in the player as the original movie. The Xenomorph is impervious to damage and totally unpredictable; and the only way to survive is to run and hide.

Star Wars: Knights Of The Old Republic

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (KOTOR) is evidence that, once upon a time, BioWare could do no wrong. As ever with this gaming company, it’s the way in which they tell a story and define the characters that set's KOTOR apart from the rest. Now it may seem a bit clichéd compared to today's standard (BioWare has used the same mold for many of its RPG characters) but in itself the title was a revelation back in 2003.

As a parting gift, there’s also, (1) The Chronicles Of Riddick: Escape From Butcher Bay, a superb -- if short -- game about Vin Diesel’s lovable sociopath; (2) The Thing, the tie-in to John Carpenter’s gruesome movie of the same name; and (3) Spider-Man 2, one of the rarest beasts of all, a good game based on a superhero character.


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