There was once upon a time when the release of a major new cinematic blockbuster was always accompanied by a tie-in video game, despite the fact that only a few titles proved successful in translating the big-screen action to consoles.
One of the most obvious exceptions was of course EA’s decision to reimagine GoldenEye, Pierce Brosnan’s debut big screen outing as James Bond, as a first-person shooter. The game was an enormous success and really highlighted the multimedia potential of major franchises and their ability to cross over into different areas.
But what about the lesser known examples of top franchises spinning off into areas you might not expect? Here are a few examples of gaming titles which have enjoyed success in areas you may not realise.
When Steven Spielberg’s original Jurassic Park film hit the big screen in 1993, it was inevitable that the mix of action, excitement and – obviously – dinosaurs would spawn not only future sequels but also a number of spin-offs.
There have been a range of games released under the Jurassic Park banner. As well as going down the obvious route of action, entries into the series such as Jurassic Park III: Park Builder went simply for a theme-park-building style.
Online casinos have also jumped on the Jurassic Park bandwagon: for instance, award-winning site 32Red UK is home to an online slot based on Jurassic Park, which manages to reflect the original film in a number of ways. Visuals of all the lead characters are present, alongside pictures of the major dinosaurs that play a part in the classic film. Some of the traits of the animals are used to maximum effect too, such as the Dilophosaurus spitting on symbols to change their meaning and value. For a complete immersive atmosphere, jungle sounds even feature in the background.
Hellboy is one of the many properties to take the leap from comic books to the big screen before landing in the world of video games. Guillermo Del Toro directed two visually impressive Hellboy movies and the character’s only console outing came following the release of the first film in 2004.
Sadly the title, Hellboy: The Science of Evil received middling reviews but – as with Jurassic Park – a slot version of the character continues to remain popular on online casino sites.
Unlike the last two franchises, Hitman of course made its debut in gaming before going on to inspire two major film adaptations of the character. There have been six games released in total in the Hitman series, with the latest game being released in a groundbreaking episodic format to rave reviews this year.
Away from console gaming and the big screen however, Hitman has also branched out into areas you might not expect. This is yet another character to have found a home in online slots as well as – rather surprisingly – literature. A novel based on Agent 47, Hitman: Enemy Within, was released in 2007.
Like Agent 47, the character of Lara Croft has enjoyed a hugely successful life in video games, while she has also been subject to the inevitable film adaptation.
Two reasonable efforts starring Angelina Jolie have been made, but the character is set to get a reboot on the big screen with Alicia Vikander taking on the role. According to IMDb, the new film is expected to hit screens in 2018.
Away from film and consoles, Tomb Raider has also inspired a couple of online slots games, comic books and several official novels.
Game of Thrones
This epic fantasy series of course started life in the page of George R.R. Martin’s books, only for the vivid and often brutal tales of Westeros to reach a new level of popularity when HBO commissioned a big-budget TV adaptation. However, the Game of Thrones universe has also gone on to inspire a range of other spin-offs which you may not be familiar with.
Several video games have been released, with one by Telltale Games proving particularly successful, while an online slot featuring designs inspired by the TV show is also available. Elsewhere, fans of the show can even enjoy a board game and a card game.