Currently, comic book movies have been dominating the Hollywood market, with movies like Marvel's The Avengers taking 3rd in biggest opening weekend at the box office of all time, and its sequel following at 4th highest. Super hero video games have been getting more of the attention they deserve as well, with amazing series out like Batman: Arkham Asylum or Marvel Heroes 2016. Our generation loves comics, but what about the series outside of the mega hit conglomerates Marvel and DC Comics? These are a few of the unsung heroes of American comics, and our hopes for how we could see them transformed into the next awesome video game series.
Lets get the obvious one out of the way right now. Todd MacFarlane's Spawn is an awesome character. After being murdered by one of his closest friends and partner, CIA agent Albert Francis Simmons made a deal with a demon (always a smart idea) to get his revenge. Returning as the creature known as Spawn, Simmons comes back to find that his wife has married another man and moved on. His heart broken, Spawn turns against the demons who tricked him into this life. Talk about a cold blooded deal, but that's how these monkey-paw exchanges typically work out. Spawn has a ridiculous amount of powers, ranging from being able to stop time, resurrect the dead, teleport, self-healing, superhuman strength and his awesome chain weapons. All of these would make for an amazing super hero action adventure game like Batman: Arkham Asylum. The last time we had a Spawn game was 2003; I think we're due for a next generation title that does the series justice.
Yeah that's Hellboy carrying a talking pug and beating grave golems back to mud with his bear hands. (The pug's name is PUGSLEY! Stop it Dark Horse you're killing me.) Hellboy was created by Mike Mignola and is probably another series where you know the movie better then the comics. Similar to Spawn, this franchise hasn't had a game made since 2008, and the reviews for it were less than mediocre. This doesn't mean a good game still can't be made for it. Wouldn't you love seeing a Hellboy that played like Darksiders? Hellboy tearing his way through armies of variant demons and other folklore type creatures with characters like his friend Kate Corrigan, a professor specializing in mythical beasts, advising you along the way? A metroidvania style of unlocking new fantasy based weapons and powers with Hellboy's gritty, smug humor powering the game along? I'd love to see more of this franchise done right.
Back in 2006 Jerry Holkins and Mike Krahulik of Penny Arcade decided to play around with some new ideas for web comics. Two of the ones that have stayed around the longest were a series about young boys becoming men in a pseudo boy-scout scenario set in a brutal fantasy world called Lookouts. The other one is about a homicide detective in the NYPD and a robot from a mysterious background working together to solve crimes. What kind of capers could a wisecracking detective and an emotionless yet sympathetic robot in a world filled with robo-racism get into? Oh I don't know, how about ANY? Automata is another cleverly written comic from the people at Penny Arcade and even has a live action web series in the works. With the heavy focus on story, this would be an amazing game to be done in the style of Telltale's signature method, or something similar to other story heavy detective games like Murdered: Soul Suspect. The premise would be you playing the main human character Detective Regal as you explore the seedy underbelly of corrupt futuristic New York with with the robot Carl.
Written by Jamie Hewlett and Alan Martin, Tank Girl became a bit of an icon in the UK as a symbol of female counter culture. In the comic, Rebecca Buck a.k.a. Tank Girl is a tank pilot/bounty hunter/outlaw on the run from an organization that has put a huge price on her head. She's crass, trigger-happy, sexually explicit and crazy fun. With all the hype around Deadpool nowadays, you'd think someone with her reputation would be getting more attention. Think of an open world 2015 Mad Max stylized game with scavenging the wastelands of her world with nothing but your tank, kangaroo boyfriend and unholy armada of firepower to keep you company while your former employers send waves and waves of flunkies to try to hunt you down as you complete whatever madcap objective Tank Girl has set ahead for herself. With boss fight tank vs tank battles, awesome firefights, explosions, this game would have everything.
Think Dungeons and Dragon's mixed with an all female cast of dissident adventurers, Rat Queens is the newest series on this list. Created by Kurtis J. Wiebe in 2013, Rat Queens is the story of four not so typical adventurers making their way through the tropes of a common fantasy setting. Your characters are the rock and roll elven mage, post-post modern dwarven fighter, atheist human cleric and drug-addled and happy-go-lucky halfling thief. The series has received much critical acclaim over the past few years, and is even getting its own TV series soon. Similar to Tank Girl, these women represent an aggressive counter culture interpretation of women, and are a whole lot of fun to follow. I'd say we deserve an all female cast roleplaying game with these four finding a way to blend their diverse fighting styles, all the while having to deal with each other's bickering and conflicting personalities. If BioWare had this franchise's game rights it'd be done with respect to the way the character's act and have wonderful interaction.
Are there any other comics out there that you think deserve the video game treatment? If so leave some comments below as to what you think might make for the next big super hero sensation.