Beyond Gaming – Shows Every Gamer Should Watch

Gaming Shows

Every once in a while I sit down in front of my computer and can’t decide what game to play. When that happens, it’s time to turn off the computer and head to the couch for some TV time. With so many choices, though, it can be tough to find something to watch. I’ve already covered the 10 worst video game movies of all time, as well as a  list of cyberpunk-themed movies that are actually worth watching. This time around I’m offering up 7 movies and TV series with plots that could have been ripped straight from your favorite video game. So grab some popcorn and get ready for a video game-free weekend as you binge these shows every gamer should watch.

Old Guard

  • Initial Release: 2020
  • Format: Movie, 2h 5m
  • Where to watch: Netflix

In Old Guard, four undying warriors have protected humanity for centuries. They’ve honed their fighting skills over multiple lifetimes and are willing to sacrifice their flesh in battle as only an immortal can. They’ve been able to keep their identities a secret but the breadcrumbs are there for someone who knows where to look.  With a new foe on their heels and a newly identified immortal needing their aid, the group is in for the fight of their lives.

Dark Matter

  • Initial Release: 2015
  • Format: Series, 3 seasons
  • Where to watch: Netflix

We’ve all seen it before – your character wakes up with no memory of who, what, or why they are where they are. In the sci-fi series Dark Matter, it’s just like that times 6 (plus an android). Running for three seasons on the SyFy channel, the crew of the Raza must piece together their past while plotting the course for their future. There’s no telling whether each encounter will create a new ally or stir up an old enemy.

Hardcore Henry

  • Initial Release: 2015
  • Format: Movie, 1h 36m
  • Where to watch: Netflix

Filmed entirely in the first-person perspective, we see everything as Henry does, starting with the moment he awakens on the operating table to see cybernetic limbs being attached to his body, followed immediately by an attack that separates Henry from his loving wife. From that moment on, you’re in for a wild ride filled with more guns, explosions, and fighting than a John Wick movie.

Hanna

  • Initial Release: 2019
  • Format: Series, 2 seasons (renewed for a 3rd)
  • Where to watch:  Prime Video

Agent Erik Heller has gone rogue and rescued baby Hanna from a top-secret CIA facility. After fifteen years in hiding, the CIA still wants their asset back. With the duo separated and on the run, Hanna must put her training to use to evade capture. Along the way, Hanna will learn the one thing Erik forgot to teach her – how to be a human and forge her own destiny.

Train To Busan

  • Initial Release: 2016
  • Format: Movie, 1h 58m
  • Where to watch: Prime Video

It has zombies; what more does it need to be turned into a video game? Train To Busan is so much more than your typical zombie apocalypse, though. When his daughter convinces him to take her to see her mother on her birthday, self-absorbed Seo Seok-woo has the chance to prove to her that he cares about more than just himself. When the zombies start pouring in, Seo Seok-woo must learn compassion if he, his daughter, and the rest of the passengers aboard the train to Busan are to survive.

Spectral

  • Initial Release: 2016
  • Format: Movie, 1h 48m
  • Where to watch: Netflix

In Spectral, scientist Mark Clyne is sent to war-torn  Moldova to consult on the deployment of one of his inventions – hyperspectral imaging goggles. When a team using the goggles is attacked by a translucent humanoid apparition, Clyne is sent in with a Delta Force squad to gather more intel. The hunters quickly become the hunted and, with the death toll rising, they must find a way to combat the apparitions before they are wiped out.

Alice In Borderland

  • Initial Release: 2020
  • Format: Series, 1 Season (renewed for a second)
  • Where to watch: Netflix

A degenerate gamer, Arisu, and his two friends get whisked away to an alternate Tokyo where they must survive a series of sadistic challenges. Without an instruction manual to guide them and no reset button if they fail, the trio has to decipher the goal of each challenge or die. Will they take a co-op approach with the other players they come across, or will they adopt a less friendly player vs player attitude? Only one thing’s for sure in this adaptation of the manga of the same name – not everyone is playing by the same set of rules.

Written by
Old enough to have played retro games when they were still cutting edge, Mitch has been a gamer since the 70s. As his game-fu fades (did he ever really have any?), it is replaced with ever-stronger, and stranger, opinions. If that isn't the perfect recipe for a game reviewer, what is?

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