Review of 10 Interesting Short Movies Based on Games

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    Most studios are incredibly inimical about adapting even those works that are begging to be brought to the big screen. However, the fan community is unsatisfied with this state of affairs, as they are eager to return to their beloved universe.

    This material has collected ten of the most curious and exciting short films worth watching.


    • List of the most interesting fan-made short films based on games
    • Quick review for every item on the list

    One of the truths that doesn't need confirmation is that movies based on video games often turn out to be failures. And even the best of them can hardly compete with more or less solid films regarding box office receipts.

    Therefore, various short films based on different projects appear thanks to the efforts of individual enthusiasts. Among them are blatantly trashy videos and quite expensive productions worth watching.

    Most Interesting Short Game-Based Videos

    • Uncharted
    • The Brothers Rapture – BioShock Short Film
    • Mortal Kombat: Rebirth
    • Max Payne: Bloodbath
    • Portal: No Escape
    • Deus Ex: Human Revolution
    • Splinter Cell: Extinction
    • Red Dead Redemption – Seth's Gold
    • Croft
    • Watch Dogs


    The recent film "Uncharted: Not on the Map" starring Tom Holland and Mark Wahlberg, became the highest-grossing among video game adaptations. Although the competition was not fierce (the previous record holder was "Warcraft"), the achievement is nonetheless significant. The fact that the adaptation of Drake's Adventures, which had been languishing in production hell for years, finally made it to release is commendable.

    However, some fans believed that "Not on the Map" did not truly capture the spirit of the games and that the 2018 short film did a much better job. This work was liked by almost everyone, including Amy Hennig, the writer of the original projects. It had everything fans expected from an adaptation: a camera peeking over the shoulder, the main character with sharp jokes, and a calm and balanced Sully.

    But most importantly, Nathan Drake was played by the "canonical" Nathan Fillion, known for the series "Firefly" and "Castle". Immediately after the film's release, various studios were flooded with requests to create such a series. Unfortunately, it was all in vain. A slight increase in budget and duration could have made it at least as good as the 2021 film.

    The Brothers Rapture – BioShock Short Film

    The story of the failed attempt to adapt BioShock also deserves separate material. Gore Verbinski, famed for "Pirates of the Caribbean", was about to start shooting. However, the failure of "Watchmen" led the studio to cancel the expensive project urgently. Fans of Irrational Games' creations had to settle for short films based on the themes.

    The Brothers Rapture stands out the most. The film briefly narrates the events that preceded the downfall of the underwater city. Two sculptor brothers, Charles and Arthur, moved to Rapture, where they attempted to push the boundaries of science and technology.

    However, they encountered moral issues regarding the use of plasmids, which ultimately cost them dearly. Students from Toronto shot the film. Despite the severely limited budget, the final version looked excellent. The authors implemented decent special effects and conveyed the atmosphere of the original BioShock.

    Mortal Kombat: Rebirth

    Kevin Tancharoen presented his version of the Mortal Kombat universe for seven and a half thousand dollars. Rebirth was primarily addressed to the leadership of Warner Bros., who wanted to show a new vision for a possible adaptation of the legendary fighting game. Unsurprisingly, many viewers perceived the project as a trailer for an upcoming film.

    The project was even liked by Ed Boon, who called it "amazing". Among other inexpensive short films, "Rebirth" stood out for its excellent cast and exciting storyline. The authors presented more grounded versions of familiar characters: Johnny Cage, Reptile, Baraka, Sonya Blade, and Scorpion.

    Scorpion radiated deadly danger despite his handcuffed hands, and the charisma of Jax Briggs was felt even through the screen. But most importantly, a beautiful and brutal action scene was shown in the spirit of the original MK. It's a pity that the series "Legacy", created based on Rebirth, turned out to be inconsistent, getting lost in its script.

    Max Payne: Bloodbath

    The single adaptation of Max Payne turned out to be highly controversial. Many were bothered by Mark Wahlberg, who played the detective who lost everything. Others were annoyed by the convoluted plot and clumsy attempts at noir. While the film did not bring the profit the studio hoped for, many still liked it. In response, true fans began filming numerous short films about the honest Max.

    Among the masses, Bloodbath stands out. This three-minute clip looks very cheap and needs to be more attractive. It features extraordinary, off-putting special effects, not the best acting, and a weird atmosphere. Notably, many questions were raised by the shots' slow-motion effect and the enemies' behavior after being hit by bullets.

    But this strange work has its charm. It can be quickly watched due to its short duration. The familiar motifs in the soundtrack will provoke flashbacks about the times of playing Max Payne.

    Portal: No Escape

    Many years have passed since JJ Abrams and Gabe Newell promised to film some game from Valve. Tired of waiting, in 2011, Dan Trachtenberg took matters into his own hands and released a seven-minute video dedicated to the Portal project. In addition, the director perceived the film as a chance to get into a big movie.

    Even though it turned out beautiful and atmospheric, the audience lacked wow moments and fresh ideas, especially with the signature weapon. The creators of Portal: No Escape completely removed the original conflict, including the artificial intelligence GLaDOS. After all the manipulations, a nameless heroine remained, trying to escape from the research laboratory. The number of action scenes here is minimal, and although the portal gun looked decent, it needed more original tricks. Unsurprisingly, Trachtenberg floundered in the swamp of TV series for a long time until one of his short films turned into "10 Cloverfield Lane," a sequel to "Monstro."

    Deus Ex: Human Revolution

    Many years have passed since JJ Abrams and Gabe Newell promised to film some game from Valve. Tired of waiting, in 2011, Dan Trachtenberg took matters into his own hands and released a seven-minute video dedicated to the Portal project. In addition, the director perceived the film as a chance to get into a big movie.

    The process of creating a short film based on Deus Ex: Human Revolution is similar to the game's history. Despite a decent budget by the standards of fan creations, the long-suffering work on it got stuck in production hell. Director Mo Sharif spent several years making the twelve-minute video in no way inferior to an expensive Hollywood action movie in a fantasy setting. At the same time, the project stands out because of its excellent picture and because the creation does not contradict the original but neatly complements its events.

    According to the film's plot, Adam Jensen, who works in the security service of Sarif Industries, manages to look after his ex-girlfriend Megan Reed. But after starting work on a secret project, she disappears, causing Jensen to go looking for her. He will make many new enemies along the way and reveal secrets that no one should know.

    Splinter Cell: Extinction

    The Splinter Cell series has been unsuccessful in making it to the big screen for many years. However, all the attempts failed, as the script was rewritten multiple times, and only Tom Hardy was announced among the actors. Unsurprisingly, fans' expectations were filled with various short films, and the fan-made Splinter Cell: Extinction turned into a whole series.

    Extinction's central role is not the famous Sam Fisher but another operative named Corbin. However, the aging agent looks incredibly like Sam in the shadows and with the trademark three-eyed visor. The protagonist stealthily infiltrates an enemy facility.

    But only some things go smoothly, and the agent becomes the target of his agency. For those who dislike new faces and want to watch the adventures of the legend, Atomic Productions' work is a better fit. It narrates how Sam Fisher became the main character of "Third Echelon". It is complemented by high-quality shooting, decent acting, and adherence to the series' canon.

    Red Dead Redemption – Seth's Gold

    The Spanish studio Zapruder Pictures got tired of waiting for any progress in terms of adaptation from Rockstar Games and shot a film based on their own. The short film on Red Dead Redemption was quite good; its only flaw was the short duration. However, the authors brilliantly conveyed the Wild West's atmosphere and the original's spirit.

    Horse riding, shooting from pistols and machine guns, cunning traders, saloons – all the necessary attributes of the era are in place. Some shots could even be mistaken for screenshots from RDR. The plot of the clip is in the spirit of the game itself. Former criminal John Marston methodically tracks down his former associate Bill Williamson to catch and hand him over in exchange for his freedom.

    The action is interspersed with the dodgy potion seller Nigel West Dickens and the deranged gold seeker Seth Briars, whose antics remind one of Gollum.


    In cinema, Lara Croft is closely associated with the young Angelina Jolie. However, among various fan-made creations, the short film Croft holds the title for quality. It's unsurprising, as the twenty-minute adaptation looks at least as good as the latest adaptation with Alicia Vikander.

    The clip closely resembles the newest reboot of the Tomb Raider series from 2013 regarding tone, spirit, and atmosphere. It features everything the trilogy stood out for a spectacular tomb raider, terrorists, a bow and arrows, rock climbing, and even mysticism. It was sometimes harsh and tense, and the action episodes stayed within blockbusters.

    Watch Dogs

    A film adaptation of Watch Dogs is only in the plans, so it's not a fact that Ubisoft will even get to the point of filming. The same cannot be said about the fan community, which released two solid works. In the first six-minute film, Aidan Pierce saves his friend from severe problems in the face of an aggressive group in masks and with pistols. The creators of the video took the same idea about the city's dependence on technology as a basis. They quite accurately recreated the game's visual style and some gameplay features.

    Similar motifs are contained in the film Watch Dogs: Retribution. This short film was directed by brothers Harry and George Kirby specifically for the Machinima YouTube channel, and the nine-minute running time included good action scenes, shootouts, and Pierce's usual routines: spying on passers-by and hacking ATMs.

    Fans are full of creativity and originality, as among the numerous short films, many more good ones can be highlighted. Small clips about the mustachioed Captain Price attempted to patch the plot holes of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. Although it turned out so-so, it was a good attempt. And the web series Fallout Nuka Break stretched over two seasons. Indeed, in the future, many more exciting works will be released.


    In addition to the notable fan creations and short films based on video games, non-commercial adaptations thrive with creativity and passion, showcasing the depth of fandoms.

    One such gem is "Half-Life: Escape from City 17," a short film series inspired by Valve's iconic Half-Life series. It blends action and science fiction to tell the story of resistance fighters battling against the oppressive combined forces.

    Another standout is "The Last of Us: Part 2 - Another Side of Ellie," a fan film that dives deeper into Ellie's emotional turmoil and resilience in a post-apocalyptic world, complementing the narrative depth of the original game.

    "Legend of Zelda: The Hero of Time," created by enthusiasts of the classic Nintendo series, offers a live-action adaptation of Link's quest to save Princess Zelda, capturing the adventurous spirit of the game with a palpable love for the source material. These films exemplify how fans use their talents to expand the universes they adore, adding new layers to beloved stories and characters. Note that serious people now adapt the game to screens for serious money; the more attractive it is to compare,

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    CS Virtual Trade Ltd, reg. no. HE 389299 Registered address and the principal place of business: 705, Spyrou Araouzou & Koumantarias, Fayza House, 3036, Limassol, Cyprus
    Copyright © 2024 BLIX.GG. All rights reserved.