5 Game Series That Should Get A TV Show (And One That Shouldn’t)

Once upon the time, video game adaptations brought to movies and television were… not great. Whether it be the Super Mario Bros. movie from 1993, 2005’s DOOM movie, or anything ever directed by Uwe Boll, video game adaptations very rightfully got a bad rap for a long time. But, in the interim, they’ve vastly improved, at least on average. Whether you look to the silver screen at adaptations like last year’s Super Mario Bros. and the new Sonic the Hedgehog franchise, or at made-for-streaming shows like Last of Us and Fallout, it seems that the video game curse is broken.

And, since it’s broken, well, we just couldn’t help but throw our hat in the ring when it comes to thinking of what other fantastic game series would make for great series. In this list, we will explain what series we think should be giving the adaptation treatment, and why we think that they’d be so good. We also tried to stick to things that seem reasonably likely to be actually possible — sorry, Alone in the Dark, but we don’t see you getting a TV reboot any time soon.

And so, without further ado, let’s look at our list of 6 game series that really, really should get a TV show on streaming.

Red Dead Redemption

This one almost goes without saying, but Red Dead Redemption is already so cinematic that it would be a natural fit. Like HBO’s recent Last of Us series, Red Dead Redemption already has several gorgeous stories to tell, and has a world rich enough with character to easily allow a showrunner to think up something new. And, with the Western genre primed for a bit of a revival (especially with ahistorical setting, like Red Dead’s), it would be a shoo-in for a great adaptation.

red dead redemption

Plus, if the powers that be started filming a series now, they would likely finish in time to release after Grand Theft Auto 6, while Rockstar Games could be working on another entry in the franchise, keeping the hype up for it in the same way as the Fallout series has been for that franchise. Really, there is no downside in putting some effort into making a Red Dead Redemption streaming show, one that both fans of the games, and fans of the western genre can get behind.

Metro 2033

After the success of other post-apocalyptic game adaptations like HBO’s Last of Us and Amazon’s Fallout, it is only natural that Metro 2033 is on our minds. And, for the money, we think 4A Game’s Metro series (adapted itself from Dmitry Glukhovsky’s novel series, would be prime material for a similar adaptation. While it is the darkest of the three, especially in terms of its world, it has the same hallmarks that made those series work: iconic imagery, powerful stories, and an absolutely captivating world.


Everything about Metro 2033 tells us that it would be an excellent adaptation. Gritty, tense, filled with politics (that are distant enough from modern discourse to not be exhausting), and filled to the brim with excellent characters (and locations that might as well be characters themselves), it would truly be great to see Metro’s mutated, barren world take the prestige-television course.

Deus Ex

Deus Ex is a classic. It’s also lost a lot of steam since its heyday. But do you know what can revitalize interest in a brand? A gritty, cyber-noir thriller exploring the conspiracy-laden world, featuring brutal action, deep plots, and an intricate plot that would make your head spin. And that’s why Deus Ex would make a fantastic series to adapt to streaming: a few episodes of mystery-soaked, augmented-detective mystery will have viewers hooked, and a faithful adaptation of the characters and world would be sure to keep them there.

deus ex

Not to mention that you can do all this on a relatively low budget, supported by solid leads and writing. There really isn’t anything like Deus Ex on streaming, and hasn’t been since Altered Carbon left the air. Sure, Cyberpunk: Edgerunners has something similar, but the grit and philosophical darkness isn’t the same, nor is the messaging. Deus Ex would be an ideal adaptation for the streaming screen, and should be done immediately (if you ask us).

Assassin’s Creed

We know. They already made a live-action Assassin’s Creed movie. And it was terrible, and lost its creators a lot of money. But listen: a lot has changed since 2016, especially for video game adaptations, and it wouldn’t be the first time that a video game adaptation takes 2 tries to get right. As a streaming show, too, Assassin’s Creed would have a lot of time to set up and pay off its intricate, Dan-Brown-esque world, which is what the movie really lacked.

assassins creed

Combine that with the fact that Assassin’s Creed is a psuedo-historical franchise that can really take advantage of Hollywood’s fixation on period pieces, and is filled with memorable characters and iconography, and you really do have the makings of a hit show. All they need is a competent showrunner to right the wrongs of 2016’s misfire, and they could easily end up with a live-action (or animated, we aren’t picky) version of one of the most popular game franchises of all time.

Plus, I really want to know who they’d cast as Ezio.

Mass Effect

10 years ago, the thought of a big-budget, sci-fi epic on TV based on a video game would’ve been a pipe dream. But that was before the Halo show proved that it was possible to make a highly-watched (if not highly rated) sci-fi show with a huge budget. Well, we might be a bit dubious on the quality of that adaptation, but if we are proving things can be done… How about Mass Effect? Huge universe, huge stakes, tons of cool designs, and one of the best stories in gaming. All within a package that, even at the time, was compared to cinema (for better and worse)

mass effect

Well, now’s the time. The Mass Effect franchise has been in a bit of limbo for a while, but still has a huge amount of fans who are practically reverent over its story. And, with such a massive universe to explore and so many concepts buried throughout, it would be easy for a talented showrunner to make the universe their own, while still being faithful to the original story. Granted, it might take quite a budget to make work, but that’s the appeal of making such a grand setting live-action. We would love to see it.

Dishonorable Mention: Dark Souls

Trust me, I get it. Dark Souls tells one of the best stories in gaming. It really does, and the journey to discover that story is as intriguing as they come, full of mystery and allure that truly works. To say nothing of the actualy story, confusing as it may be if you aren’t reading item descriptions, presenting in the gameplay. It all feels very grand, and on first blush, it sure seems like the epic, action-heavy feel of the games would suit TV well. But, I’m here to say: they wouldn’t. At all.

dark souls

There are a few reasons for this. Firstly, the stories of every From Software game (yes, even Sekiro) are confusing and deeply buried in item descriptions. They are hard to keep up with. And, what’s more, the stories that are told are very distantly connected, and sometimes even totally divorced from the player character. They are interesting, but not at all what would suit a proper, dramatic telling in live-action. Plus, a TV show needs a lot more characters, with a lot more presence, and that means a lot more explanation and life than the dead, mysterious worlds found in From Software games contain. As such, we have to place some of our absolutely favorite games of all time in the time-out corner: please, Hollywood, don’t touch Dark Souls.

And there you have it: 5 game series that should be adapted, a la Last of Us or Fallout, into a TV show. But, of course, this is but a small sample of all the games that could get the streaming treatment, so let us know in the comments below some other games you’d love to see in live-action (or animation).

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Graves is an avid writer, web designer, and gamer, with more ideas than he could hope to achieve in a lifetime. But, armed with a mug of coffee and an overactive imagination, he’ll try. When he isn’t working on a creative project, he is painting miniatures, reading cheesy sci-fi novels, or making music.

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