Best & Worst: Movie Videogames

The left, right, up, down of movie tie-in games


Inspired by yesterday's feature, Best & Worst:Videogame Movies, we viced the versa and came up with this stroke of genius.

Often, the only thing worse than a videogame movie is a movie videogame, but thankfully there are diamonds in the rough and this list didn't have to devolve any 'lesser of two evil' shenanigans.

Without further adieu, here are the Best & Worst: Movie Videogames, prepare to disagree...


Best & Worst: Marvel Movie Videogames


Spider-Man 2 (PS2, XBOX)

Why It Rocks: One of the most fully realized and interactive cityscapes in videogame history is why – Spidey can climb, crawl and swing his way around New York without interruption thanks to an improved web-slinging mechanic.

Taking a GTA approach to gameplay, Spiderman 2 involves roaming Manhattan, stopping a wide variety of crimes and earning points to buy new skills. There is also a linear mission involving Doc Ock and various villains from the comics.



Iron Man (PS3, XBOX 360)

Why It Sucks: Frustrating controls, repetitive gameplay, poor graphics are the main problems with this tie-in release, with a catastrophic rise in difficulty halfway through all but halting gameplay.

Although it features voice acting from Downey Jr. and co, you know somebody dropped a major ball when a game of this quality is released to tie-in with one of the best films of the year.


Next: Star Wars[page-break]


Best & Worst: Star Wars Videogames


Star Wars Arcade (Arcade)

Why It Rocks: Released to coincide with the re-mastered Star Wars Trilogy in 1997, this game was an arcade only adventure with missions spanning the events of the entire trilogy.

The sumptuous graphics, crystal sound and original trilogy based storylines contribute to this being one of the greatest arcade games of all time, let alone the greatest Star Wars game.



Star Wars Masters of Teras Kasi (PS)

Why It Sucks: Up against the likes of Soul Calibre, Virtua Fighter and Tekken, this attempt to get a toe in the beat ‘em up market is woefully underdeveloped and clunky.

Lightsabers, able to lop off limbs in a single swipe, are reduced here to mere baseball bats. The physics engine, fighting, animation, graphics and variety of moves are painfully lackluster, which is why no-one’s ever played it.


Next: James Bond[page-break]


Best & Worst: James Bond Videogames


GoldenEye 007 (N64)

Why It Rocks: For anyone with friends, this was the most epic invention in movie gaming since the joypad. The Goldeneye multiplayer deathmatch popularised multiplayer gaming, paving the way for the likes of Halo and Timesplitters 2.

Consistently rated amongst the best games of all time, Goldeneye sold in excess of 8 million copies, and invented head shots, zoomable sniper scopes, and a solid stealth solo mission make this gaming gold.



Tomorrow Never Dies (PS)

Why It Sucks: The license for James Bond was picked up by EA following Goldeneye, and their first effort was this pig’s pickle, released in 1999 to mediocre reviews and cries of “Seriously?” from Goldeneye diehards.

A third person shooter which deviates from the lot of the film and includes no multiplayer option, there is evidence to suggest that Tomorrow Never Dies was a BETA version rushed for release.


Next: Steven Spielberg[page-break]


Best & Worst Steven Spielberg Movie Videogames


The Lost World (Arcade)

Why It Rocks: Strap into the jeep-styled arcade cabinet, put your finger on the trigger and don’t let go. The Lost World was a non-stop rollercoaster of adrenaline pumping chase sequences and mass dino-slaughter.

Eating your loose change faster than a 2am trip to the vending machines, but only because of the compelling gameplay – this is hardly a rip off. It isn’t the deepest most involving game you’ll ever play, but it is the most fun.



ET (Atari)

Why It Sucks: Made in 6 weeks after Steven Spielberg made a last minute personal request to the developer, who had impressed the Beard with his work on the Raiders Of The Lost Ark game – this rush job is practically unplayable.

You play the titular extraterrestrial, and you plod around trying to put together the pieces of a phone, you know, so you can ‘phone home’ while constantly getting stuck in pot holes. The frustration isn’t worth the aneurism.


Next: Arcade Videogames[page-break]


Best & Worst: Movie Arcade Videogames


T2: The Arcade Game (Arcade)

Why It Rocks: With purpose shot footage featuring Arnie and Robert Patrick, this first person shooter allows budding Terminators out there to take down Skynet and save the future.

The first mission of the game is a backstory to the film, showing the T-800 and the T-1000 before they travelled through time. With photorealistic 2D images of the actors and addictive, quality gameplay, T2 arcade was the business.



Street Fighter: The Movie (Arcade)

Why It Sucks: Using motion captured photo-realistic images of the actors from the movie, and their voice talents, this should have been another solid entry into the Street Fighter franchise.

Unfortunately, with Van Damme’s accent making all his dialogue completely inaudible and the photo-realistic 2D characters looking wooden, and graphics and physics engines that were beyond their prime, this is one to miss.


Next: Movie Monsters[page-break]


Best & Worst: Movie Monster Videogames


Aliens Vs. Predator (PC)

Why It Rocks: With three playable characters – the Alien, the Predator, or a Colonial Marine, each with their own storylines, gameplay and features, AvP was a revolutionary experience in game design.

Loaded with bonus levels, gore, weaponry and inventive methods of dispatching enemies, AvP is about as complete as gaming experience as possible, making everyone who played beg for a movie version. They should have kept schtum.



Jaws Unleashed (Xbox)

Why It Sucks: From the makers of Ecco: The Dolphin, who announced that in the Jaws game you will play the shark itself, causing palpitations of junk food clogged geek-hearts and prompting a change of shorts for most.

They promised GTA in the ocean. What they delivered was a boring, glitchy game that was prone to freezing and had camera problems. Sure it was fun killing random swimmers, but boy if it didn’t get old after three or four deaths.


Next: David Perry[page-break]


Best & Worst: David Perry Movie Videogames


Disney’s Aladdin (SNES, Genesis)

Why It Rocks: David Perry is a super-developer responsible for some of the most popular videogame titles of all time. He is also responsible for several movie tie-ins, including this, his effort for Disney’s Aladdin.

Slicing and dicing your way through level after level of Arabian adventure, the game closely follows the plot of the film, with magic carpet rides and Genie bonus levels.



Enter The Matrix (PS2, XBOX)

Why It Sucks: The developer of one of the greatest movie videogames is also responsible for one of the worst. Released as a prequel to coincide with the arrival of The Matrix Reloaded, this was just as hyped, and just as disappointing.

Featuring none of the major characters from the film, crappy graphics, glitches, and felt rushed. The inclusion of a total of two hours of purpose shot footage and an expansion of The Matrix storyline did little to sate fans desperate for Neo.


Next: Philip K. Dick Movies[page-break]


Best & Worst: Philip K. Dick Movie Videogames


Blade Runner (PC)

Why It Rocks: The excellent animation, immersive plot and fully realised characters are part of the reason, not to mention the possibilities for repeat play with up to 13 different endings.

You play Blade Runner Ray McCoy in a point and click detective adventure that serves a side story to the 1982 movie, this was the first game to use 3D models as apposed to pre-rendered hand drawn 2D models.



Total Recall (Spectrum)

Why It Sucks: Somewhere between the bearded purple midgets and the lack of three-boobed hookers lies the fact that this game is skewer to the retina of any loyal Recall fan looking for a realistic movie experience.

Apparently sticking close to the plot of the film, this involves walking around while little people in purple jumpsuits shoot at you from rubbish bins, and passing cars throw balls at you. Save time and punch yourself in the throat instead.


Next: Dan Ackroyd Movies[page-break]


Best & Worst: Dan Ackroyd Movie Videogames


Ghostbusters (Spectrum)

Why It Rocks: Taking the form of a driving game, this rivals Mario Kart for the title of most addictive car game of all time.

The 8-Bit graphics really capture the… oh, bugger it. The graphics and the sound are rubbish, but that’s not the point, this is first class gaming.



The Blues Brothers (NES, SNES, N64)

Why It Sucks: A platform game where Jake and Elwood must collect things for no reason, this was made by people who had never seen the film, never heard the blues or soul music, and never made a videogame before.

Featuring none of the music from the films, none of the acting talent, none of the plot and no logic whatsoever, this also did away with the nuns, Nazis and cops in favour of flies, lawnmowers and snails. Abysmal.


Next: Category We Couldn't Be Bothered To Make Up[page-break]


Best & Worst: Category We Couldn’t Be Bothered To Make Up


The Chronicles of Riddick (PC, Xbox, PS2)

Why It Rocks: A prison break game combining stealth and hand-to-hand combat gameplay this is a prequel to the largely disappointing film, released in the weeks before the film came out to build buzz for the feature.

Praised by critics as far superior to the movie, with the graphics on the Xbox version rated alongside those of Half-Life 2, the voice acting of Vin Diesel and Cole Hauser also helped put this above the usual tie-in fare.



Moonwalker (Master System/Mega Drive/Genesis)

Why It Sucks: RIP Michael Jackson and all, but if this videogame were his only legacy, his career would have had a rather different trajectory.

Moonwalker takes the form of a Beat ‘Em Up, except Jackson attacks enemies with dance moves and magic not physical contact, the objective is to rescue small children… we're going to stop now before this gets even worse.


Any we missed? Let us know in the comments!


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    • darjeelingmike

      Sep 3rd 2009, 9:26

      Okay TF, I respect your guys and your frequent (and mostly great) articles, but you have really dropped the ball here on your games evaluation. First off everyone knows Star Wars Battlefront is by far the best Star Wars game, perfectly capturing most of the universe and throwing every major character into an incredibly fun shooter. I also think every game involving Godzilla (I know none are a direct movie tie-in but they were most definitely influenced by) are worse than the Jaws game simply because the novelty of being Jaws lasted longer (and was more fun while it lasted) than being Godzilla (this one is picky I know). And EXACTLY HOW does Enter The Matrix Suck? It was great fun and recieved great reviews upon release. Do you like Path Of Neo? The comparison between a PC and Spectrum game isn't fair. Where have you included the new Ghostbusters game rather than that old rubbish? And where are the Batman games? Arkham Asylum is one of the best games ever, let alone a tie-in. It was a hard task TF, I give you that, but you might need to give this one a re-think! And Tomorrow Never Dies was good at the time. Rogue Agent is the real sucky game!

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    • DanRose

      Sep 3rd 2009, 10:40

      Mission Impossible on the X-Box was really good. Decent graphics, follows closely to the films script and plenty of variety. Also Lion King was good fun. Bright visuals and great sound that matched the film whilst sticking closely to the plot. Both worth a mention

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    • sowasred2012

      Sep 3rd 2009, 11:00

      @darjeelingmike I'd argue A: Knights of The Old Republic 2 was the better Star Wars game (I'd even say Republic Commando, I *loved* that game - way too short). And EXACTLY HOW Enter The Matrix sucked is pretty much listed in the article! Crappy graphics, dodgy gameplay, superfluous story (I don't think anyone who saw the film and didn't play the game felt like they were missing anything) and no Neo! Well, except for the three seconds of him saving Morpheus from the freeway. Plus, I don't think you could really include the new Ghostbusters and Batman games in this list - they're both great, but I suspect we're in a honeymoon period with both of those games and any opinion of them is gonna be given through rose-tinted glasses. Wait a little longer before saying they're the best games ever. And Tomorrow Never Dies was c**p. Everything Or Nothing was pretty good, loved that motorbike/freeway level.

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    • Film247

      Sep 3rd 2009, 12:50

      I quite liked Moonwalker! Was only 6 at the time. Didn't realise you could kill off enemies by dancing and don't remember bubbles being part of it either, had the master system version not genesis, also had the first terminator game which I remember to be solid. Most movie tie in games are rubbish, I thought King Kong was good tho and obviously Goldeneye. I remember enjoying a Batman game on the commodore 64 too based on the movie.

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    • Marshall85

      Sep 3rd 2009, 13:42

      Golden Eye was epic but hasnt aged well, Not happy that plans for Xbox live download binned, Every other bond game since then has been pants apart from maybe the last Bond on Xbox 360 which was good as same game makers as Call of Duty, Enter the Matrix wasnt too bad apart from Car Levels which sucked heavy balls, I still have to say my fave movie/comic book game is The Punisher (Xbox) as you can replay levels so many ways thanks to all unlockable guns, finishers and interrogating bad guys never gets old.....I wish they'd remake it

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    • Marshall85

      Sep 3rd 2009, 13:47

      The new Batman game is clearly amazing aswell, No rose tinted glasses for me, The voice cast are amazing, Just wish you could download alternative costumes to be used throughout storymode....Val Kilmer batman suit etc with Heath Ledger Joker.....I got the armour suit as pre-ordered my copy but cant use it on story mode meh... Ghostbusters game was alright, I loved finding all the cursed items but rest was bit repeative and thought that not being able to play whole story mode co-op sucked and online wasnt up to much

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    • darjeelingmike

      Sep 3rd 2009, 14:02

      @sowasred2012 Sorry, I completely forgot about those Star Wars games. Knights Of The Old Republic never really hit me, I prefer both Jade Empire and Mass Effect from Bioware. Republic Commando was superb, but like you say it was very short, Battlefront had superb reply value, especially online. And you have to remember that Enter The Matrix was a very early Xbox game, it wasn't being very innovative gameplay and I thought the gameplay was pretty damn good. The entire Matrix mythology is superfluous after the first movie. I agree it's not perfect but it doesn't deserve in any 'Worst Of' list. If you wanted Neo you had the pretty damn good Path Of Neo! Ghostbusters isn't one of the best games ever, it's pretty flawed but great fun and a good use of a license. Arkham Asylum however is pretty much a perfect game, Batman or otherwise. What flaws can you find in it, really? Without nitpciking? Tomorrow Never Dies was good for the TIME. How many great shooters were on the PS1 anyway? Or at least that could hold up today! Everything Or Nothing was actually superb, but not quite as good as Goldeneye.

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    • southy

      Sep 3rd 2009, 15:01

      Enter The Matrix was Total s**t

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    • Flaygor

      Sep 3rd 2009, 17:37

      Erm Arkham Asylum is very good but is it a movie tie-in? No it's not.

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    • SCQ47

      Sep 3rd 2009, 18:26

      Knights of the Old Republic? If you guys do a bit of homework, you'll see that Tie Fighter was/is the most beloved Star Wars game ever made. The demand for a remake is remarkably high and for damn good reason. If you haven't played it, you guys are missing out in the worst way.

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    • scabo33

      Sep 3rd 2009, 18:52

      Arkham Asylum is the best movie game ever.. :) Anyone got any idea where two face is in the game? his cell is empty...

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    • Desperation

      Sep 3rd 2009, 19:27

      I have fond memories on Moonwalker on the MegaDrive. I especially liked when you could turn into Robo-Michael. The rescuing small children thing is a bit dodgy though. I'd say Star Wars: Force Commander is the worst star wars game. It was the first star wars RTS, and had potential to be amazing. But it wasn't.

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    • TheSunshineHobo

      Sep 4th 2009, 1:42

      Jaws Unleashed is the best worst game i've ever played. You guys know nothing. Jaws Unleashed is amazing. People EXPLODE when you tail-whip them!! WHY?!!

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    • Ali1748

      Sep 4th 2009, 1:47

      Sucks The Goldeneye xbox live hd version was scraped damn you Nintendo !

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    • thedarkknight

      Sep 4th 2009, 9:56

      The Secret Apprentice for PS3 is the best Star Wars game in my opinion. Rebel Assault 2 also holds fond memories of childhood for me. And some may mock but any game with the LEGO label cannot fail! The Batman and Star Wars editions were amazing! I must however admit as a child I played Masters of Tera Kasi an incredible amount. Didn't seems so bad then... it does now.

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    • sowasred2012

      Sep 4th 2009, 12:49

      @darjeelingmike Agreed, I liked Path Of Neo, scrappy but a lot of fun. Arkham Asylum is awesome, if it has one problem it's that it's addictive in a way that COD4 multiplayer is, but it has nowhere near the longevity - I bought it on Friday, it's Thursday and I've already found every single Riddler trophy. I'm not saying it was easy, some of them were head-melters, but I tore through them already and now there's no more :( All I have left is to go through it again on Hard and grab some achievements in the Challenge mode. Also, Robin and Nightwing don't feature in it AT ALL. I could understand them not featuring in the game proper, but not even a cursory bio? I'm a Marvel and not a DC, and maybe Robin/Nightwing is considered an embarrassment and I just am not aware of this, but I was a little sad at this omission. Okay, *that's* nitpicking.

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    • mattburgess

      Sep 7th 2009, 16:21

      Nightwing is awesome (totally off topic). But I've got to agree with Flaygor. Pretty much every game mentioned in these comments is NOT a movie tie-in. Not Tie Fighter, not Arkham Asylum, not Force Commander, not KOTOR, not Battlefront, not Republic Commando, etc etc etc.

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    • jollieoldtime

      Sep 11th 2009, 8:14

      That Star Wars arcade game is definitely my favorite game. One day I'll actually beat Vader.

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    • alexnank

      Nov 25th 2009, 13:31

      all this talk of batman makes me wonder why catagory one is only marvel and not just comic books mives in general?

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    • Nyssa

      Feb 24th 2010, 12:53

      Does anyone remember the Wayne's World game? I think it was fairly entertaining....

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    • KingofSpain

      Jul 11th 2011, 17:25

      Since when has "rescuing small children" been a "bit dodgy"?? Seems like a very admirable aim for a video game to have. I seem to remember every kid my age at the time owning a copy of that game. Loved it how you could throw a fedora to take down an enemy. And then doing a formation dance routine every time a level was completed! Quite an iconic game really.

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    • higgins78

      Jul 15th 2011, 16:29

      @darjeelingmike Star Wars Battlefront is NOT as you claim the best Star Wars game over a period of time, if anything comes close to replicating the Star Wars movies it was the games Knights of the Old Republic, Rouge Squadron II and TIE Fighter. You also make a comment regarding the "old" Ghostbusters game being rubbish and claim the newer Ghostbusters game should take its place...rubbish! I have the strong suspicion you never played Ghostbusters on the ZX Spectrum is why and flippantly disregard it because of how the graphics have aged terribly. I have played both on initial release and can report the "old" Ghostbusters game was the better game by a country mile. Also, if you believe Arkham Asylum one of the best games ever "let alone tie-in" then you must be living in a very sheltered state. Not only is Arkham Asylum an above average game masked via a good look/feel it isnt close to being the best Batman game created thus far. Batman: The Movie (ZX Spectrum/Amiga) and Batman Returns (SNES) were both far better games.

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