Typically, great books will trigger movies to be made based on their stories. But, when a book is so captivating that you just need to fully immerse yourself into the action, there’s nothing that can capture the engaging experience of a video game. You’re able to throw yourself right into the middle of the action, interacting as and taking on the identity of the characters themselves.
Here are 10 of the best video games we’ve found, whose ideas were drawn from books:
Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six
Although there are a whole lot of games with Tom Clancy’s name slapped in their titles, only a handful are actually inspired by a book by the author. Since 1998, Rainbow Six games, centered around Clancy’s writings, have continued to gain popularity and have added newer versions and expansions.
Around the World in 80 Days provides the inspiration for this travel-themed game, where you are racing against the clock and directing your fate based on the decision you make. Taking on the role of Passepartout, you manage the finances and travel decisions for the adventurous Phineas Fogg. You decide your destiny in the game based on the decision you make throughout, with a number of different possible endings.
From its inception in 1986, Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski’s The Witcher has continued to captivate its audience. After a number of resurrections in different forms, from book series to television series, The Witcher emerged with new life in the form of an RPG game that lets you experience first-hand what it’s like to walk in the shoes of Geralt of Rivia.
American McGee’s Alice
A dark twist on Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, American McGee’s Alice melds together frightening imagery with complex puzzles found throughout the story. Rather than counting down the health, you’ve got left, you’ll find yourself checking in on your sanity level. “As a child, Alice in Wonderland always captivated my imagination. Now, I get to walk through this diabolically demonic vision of Wonderland myself,” Jane, a gaming blogger at MyWritingWay and RatedWriting explains.
Based on the novel Journey to the West, Unruly Heroes is available on a number of platforms and is a jovial and upbeat option for family game nights. You have the option to take on the role of one of four characters from the novel – Sanzang, Wukong, Kihong, or Sandmonk.
In the Metro series, players try to survive life in a post-apocalyptic Russia that has seen its surface become completely inhospitable after nuclear bombs leave the area bathed in intense radiation. While the first game acts as a fairly traditional adaptation of Russian author Dmitry Glukhovsky’s 2002 novel of the same name, the games and books actually go back and forth to fill in the narrative after that.
I Have No Mouth, And I Must Scream
As super-computers evolve, their hatred for humanity grows at an equally ravenous rate. With few human survivors left on the planet and computers controlling everything, you can now sit in control as a puppet master. Now you’ve got hold of the reins, putting each survivor in situations to test their grit and determination.
Spider-Man: Miles Morales
The number of games, books, movies, and anything else you can name, based on Spider-Man is endless. But, this third-person action game stands tall above the rest. Of course, since it’s part of the Spider-Man franchise, it’s only available on PS4 and PS5. It’s got a unique storyline, despite being based on a familiar character. “All of the style you’d expect from a classic superhero game but with just so much more in-depth material to delve into,” says Jesse, a writer at AcademAdvisor and AustralianReviewer.
Call Of Cthulhu
As Private Investigator Pierce, you’re tasked with piecing together the death of the Hawkins family. It’s a disturbing first-person thriller, where you’re putting together clues to solve the mystery at hand. After playing this game, you may actually start reaching for a new book to read to satisfy your need for mystery and investigative problem-solving.
Fullmetal Alchemist: Prince of Dawn
The disappointing part of this game is that it was only released in Japan for Nintendo Wii over a decade ago. But, there have been whispers of a new project by Hiromu Arakawa which is leaving book lovers and video game enthusiasts equally at the edge of their seats. We will all be eagerly awaiting news about future offerings to enjoy.
It’s just as easy to get lost in the experience of a good video game as it is a great book. And, when one is inspired by the other it’s easy to see how that can happen even more so. Delve into one of these great video games based on books, and transport yourself to another world.