Halloween is only a couple of months away and fans will be hyping themselves for it by watching the best horror films around. Gamers indulging in this tradition probably think of ways these terrifying experiences could translate to the gaming medium. Some horror classics have already jumped into the gaming space, whilst a select few would undoubtedly make incredible interactive experiences.
The following list will highlight franchises begging for a video game companion. Games based on licensed properties don’t have the best history, but more recent attempts have seen success. It’s doubtful most of the wishes will become realities, but gamers are accustomed to dreaming the impossible.
Updated on August 10, 2023, by Callum Murray: With the release of the new Texas Chainsaw Massacre video game just weeks away, fans are anticipating what other classic horror movies could be turned into successful video games. Horror is a popular genre for gamers at the moment with a string of successful original properties being released, alongside adaptations of big-name horror movies. Dead by Daylight is a hybrid of both and has been one of the most popular horror games around since its initial release in 2016. It’s no surprise more titles have followed.
10 You’re Next (2011)
One of the most brutal final girls ever featured in the cult classic home invasion slasher movie, You’re Next. Erin Harson grew up on a survivalist compound and her skills were particularly useful when a group of masked intruders invaded the home of her boyfriend’s family.
Any potential game would have no other choice than to put the gamer in the shoes of Erin as she fights off the masked maniacs. The hunted very much becomes the hunter in this movie, and it would translate into a video game very well.
9 The Cabin In The Woods (2011)
Those who have yet to see this unique horror jaunt should immediately put it on their watch list. It is best to go in completely ignorant of the plot, so beware of spoilers below. A potential adaptation could go a number of ways, such as an asymmetrical multiplayer game. One player is in the facility, controlling which threats to send to the others who must work together for survival.
Adversely, a more traditional, puzzle-oriented survival horror experience could be just the thing for it too. The settings have a logical build-up from a small cabin to an underground science facility, which would work perfectly for a small-scale horror title.
8 The Silence Of The Lambs (1991)
Because of all the different interpretations of this series, a video game would not necessarily have to be beholden to the movie, the Hannibal television show, or Michael Mann’s Manhunter. Like the aforementioned works, it could take the source material and do something new with it.
It is always difficult to make investigations engaging in a video game, but the recent surge of more story-driven titles is a good sign players are able to handle more cinematic experiences. At the same time, a Silence of the Lambs game doesn’t have to feel like an interactive movie or a Telltale game. People’s lives are still at stake and even the player would often be in danger.
7 The Shining (1980)
The Shining was one of the best horror movies ever made, and it would make one hell of an immersive experience as a video game. Imagine the player rocking up at the Overlook Hotel to become a caretaker for the entirety of the game.
Jack Torrance must uncover the secrets that lie in and around the hotel with missions to complete at every hurdle, whilst following an exciting story mode function. Jack Nicholson could be tempted by one last job, with the use of his famous voice to add authenticity to the project. The main priority for fans would be to recreate the look and feel of the hotel that was so expertly created by Stanley Kubrick for the original movie.
6 Ready Or Not (2019)
This is the newest film on the list, but its hide-and-seek concept would be perfect for a video game. In the movie, a bride must hide from her new rich family until dawn. The superstitious aristocrats believe her sacrifice will please the devil and prolong their fortune.
If adapted into a game, think the Mr. X portions of the Resident Evil 2 remake, only with several people hunting the player throughout the mansion instead of one. Despite its extreme violence, Ready or Not also has a twisted comedy bend, which would help it stand out from the crowded genre.
5 Psycho (1960)
The oldest horror movie on the list, and the one that is responsible for the birth of the slasher film. It would be great to get a video game version of Psycho. It’s been proven that it’s never too late for a horror movie game adaptation, with the upcoming release of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre game.
If Leatherface can roam the video game world, there’s definitely room for Norman Bates. The game could give the player two different character options. They could choose to play Marion Crane as she approaches the Bates Motel on that fateful night, or they could vicariously assume the role of the titular serial killer as he battles with the voices of his dead mother in his head. Either way, it sounds like there’s potential for an immersive experience at the famous Motel.
4 28 Days Later (2002)
Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later came at a different time when cinemas, television screens, and game consoles weren’t overflowing with zombie fiction. Even with this in mind, the intense horror experience is far from a run-of-the-mill story.
Zombies run in this world, and they don’t let up. To respect this, a game would have to be fast and vicious. It couldn’t be like Resident Evil, but it also couldn’t be like World War Z, because the movie focuses on a small group of survivors just barely scraping by.
3 Halloween (1978)
Haddonfield, Illinois. In 1978, it’s Halloween night, and Michael Myers is on the loose, stalking babysitters and scaring young children who are desperate not to believe in the boogeyman. How has there not been a video game version of one of the greatest slasher movies ever made? It would be such a great experience for the fans of the original film, and its many sequels.
Jamie Lee Curtis has taken Laurie Strode as far as she can on the big screen, but surely she’d lend her voice to a video game version featuring her character. Similar to Dead by Daylight, the player could choose to play the survivors or the villain, which in this case, would be the heavy-breathing, William Shatner mask-wearing maniac, Michael Myers. They could get the original actor Nick Castle in to do some motion capture to recreate the movements of the famous killer, and it sounds like there’s a very immersive video game in the making.
2 Shaun Of The Dead (2004)
If Edgar Wright’s classic zombie comedy was turned into a game, the main plot would have to be changed somewhat. The movie is short and much of the action takes place in a single bar once the outbreak occurs.
Adaptations straying from the source material are fine, as long as it retains the original’s spirit and message. An open-world game just as dedicated to making people laugh as it is to make them shriek would be very interesting. Dealing with the stresses of oncoming adulthood and relationships would be a weird combination. However, it’s just wacky enough to work.
1 Scream (1996)
Scream 7 has just officially been announced, proving that fans are a long time away from tiring of Ghostface and his long-suffering survivors. By the time the next movie comes out, it would be great to get a video game version of the long-running slasher series.
Funko Games released a new table-top Scream game earlier this year, and rumors have continued to surface that a video game is on the way. But fans of the movies are still waiting for that elusive green light that it’s happening. If it was to be made into a game, it would be a good idea to go down the motion capture route used in popular survival horror games like Until Dawn and The Quarry. Here’s hoping for an official announcement soon.
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