Feature: Sega to the Movies!
On various sites it’s been announced that Sega will be working on film and TV shows based on titles such as Altered Beast and Streets of Rage. I can imagine what my younger self now would be thinking; “Awesome!”
Admittedly this inner child would probably be more intrigued by the Tim Miller produced Sonic movie and I must admit the thought of his action style and cheeky fourth wall breaking humour could be ideal for the blue blur with an attitude.
Sadly I have to also be the boring adult who sounds a word of caution. In recent times the excellent Chris Stuckmann released a Hilaracity review of House of the Dead, a Uwe Boll directed flop that was frankly beyond embarrassing (seriously watch that video as I don’t think I could top that).
With my critical hat on I’m going to look at a few of the titles that their production arm Stories International is working on (and throw one of my own into the mix!)
Simply put; ninjas. With mystical powers, shurikens and cool looking costumes, this could be a lot of fun. However it may be nice to develop the characters and give it an epic scale so this may be better for TV.
With the success of Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones it’s no surprise this is in there. What would be hard is getting a budget to match those, so this may be better suited to a Xena/Hercules style romp rather than attempting to match the big boys!
Guys turning into creatures to fight monsters is nothing new. There are two ways to do this. One way would be to go super gritty and have them fight the beast within a la the Hulk or to Lord and Miller it and point out the inherit silliness of the concept. Either way don’t do a Green Lantern and attempt both.
With the success of Westworld there seems an opportunity here. A virtual reality fighting tournament. Games like Soul Calibur and Tekken have shown there is scope for epic storylines and so I would look to produce something where the central character would have a strong motivation and to provide solid support. While it may seem ludicrous it can be done!
Streets of Rage
Please, please please do not do a Double Dragon and try to make this futuristic or a comedy. That film is daft and dreadful and frankly this wonderful game deserves better. That being said I would allow for a Scott Pilgrim style heightened reality so we can have that wonderful retro ’90s dance music!
Finally this is my own choice, one that while it isn’t the biggest name or the best game I would argue is the best candidate for adaptation. For those who don’t know the game is a sort of Street Fighter/Mortal Kombat hybrid about a group of fighters across various time periods who fight in a tournament.
So far so standard. What sets it apart is the central concept. The Eternal Champion (the boss with the classic “I know your moves” trick) offers the combatants the chance to relive one moment in time before their deaths, giving them a few brief seconds to change history.
This for me is a powerful idea. You are being offered literally the chance to fight for your existence and the right to change destiny!
With regard to this my message for Sega is this; learn the lessons from Super Mario Bros, Street Fighter etc. Get the right actors in but also make sure you don’t skimp on writers and directors, there is enough indie talent out there to make this look good. In other words I want Sega to do what Nintendidn’t.