10 Best Anime Video Game Adaptations
Fans have been waiting for the next Netflix animated series Prime Sonic since the beginning of 2021, based on the beloved sonic the hedgehog franchise and is slated for release this year. To ease the wait, video game fans should check out some of the pre-existing anime adaptations of games, which include several Sonic shows.
Since companies have been making these anime adaptations since the ’80s, deciding which games-based shows and movies to watch can be tricky. Among the hundreds of examples that exist, some adaptations, such as the Netflix Castlevania series, stand out among the rest.
Rockman EXE (2002 – 2006)
Based on Mega Man Battle Network series, Rockman EXE is the longest mega man anime, with a total of 209 episodes over five seasons. Although the first two seasons were officially dubbed into English under the title MegaMan NT Warrior, the rest only have fan-made English subtitles. Similar to the games, the anime takes place in a world where everything is connected and controlled by the internet, including cars, ovens, and doors.
To make navigating this complex network easier, users own portable devices called personal terminals or “PETS”, which contain virtual beings called NetNavis. The story follows Netto (Lan) Hikari, his NetNavi Rockman (MegaMan) and their friends as they battle viruses, people, aliens and more to protect the virtual and real worlds.
Resident Evil animated movies (2008 – 2017)
Although the live action resident Evil the movies are notoriously terrible, the lesser-known computer-animated movies are actually enjoyable and very underrated. Currently, there are three films in this series, including the 2008 Resident Evil: Degeneration, the 2012 Resident Evil: Damnation, and the 2017 Resident Evil: Vendetta. Although each movie has a unique stand-alone plot, they all take place in the same continuity as the games.
Leon S. Kennedy is one of the main protagonists in each entry, but other characters such as Claire Redfield, Ada Wong, Chris Redfield, and Rebecca Chambers appear as protagonists depending on the film. While the storylines aren’t the most original or complex, they all offer the same fast-paced fun as more action-oriented game entries such as Resident Evil 4.
Persona 4: The Animation (2011 – 2012)
Although there have been several anime adaptations of games in the great Megami Tensei franchise, most fans would agree that Persona 4: The Animation is one of the best examples. Based on the original PS2 game from 2008 Persona 4, the anime follows a high school student named Yu Narukami who moves to the small rural town of Inaba for a year. Shortly after his arrival, however, mysterious murder cases begin to occur, which appear to be tied to a world inside the televisions.
Using their “Personas” to battle the creatures known as “Shadows” in the TV world, Yu and his friends must work together to resolve these incidents. Although there was also a 2014 anime titled Persona 4: The Golden based on the 2012 PS Vita re-release Persona 4: Golden, this first anime is often considered better because it adapts the source material quite faithfully and adds a few details that enhance the story rather than detract from it.
Pokemon: Origins (2013)
Although the main Pokemon The anime, which has been running since 1997, is based on the games, the anime largely tells its own story, separate from the source material. If fans want an anime series that adapts the plots and mechanics of the games, then they should check out the 2013 four-episode miniseries, Pokemon: Origins, which follows the plot of Pokemon Red and Blue.
In the Kanto region, the protagonist, Red, goes on a journey to catch Pokémon, complete the Pokédex, battle Team Rocket, defeat his rival, Blue, and become the region’s champion. In addition to adapting the plot, the anime also includes accurate gameplay references and many Generation 1 Pokémon. After this series, two more short shows, Pokemon Generations and Pokemon Evolutions, came out which also adapted the other games.
Over the years, there have been several excellent anime adaptations of visual novel games, such as Higurashi when they cry and Fate/stay night. But the best and most critically acclaimed example remains the 2011 anime series Steins;Door, which is based on the original 2009 visual novel. Like the original game, the anime follows a self-proclaimed “mad scientist” named Rintaro Okabe, who discovers a way to time travel by texting into the past.
Because some content had to be cut and interactive gameplay elements could not be reproduced, the anime lost some of the emotional impact of the game. But, the overall anime is still well executed, c that’s why it received extra episodes, a movie and some sort of sequel anime titled Steins;Gate 0.
Carmen Sandiego (2019 – 2021)
One of the most popular and influential edutainment game franchises is Carmen Sandiego, which began with the 1985 educational mystery game Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego? Since then, the franchise has had several games, shows, and more, all of which focus on the titular international thief, her adventures around the world, and the people trying to catch her. Of course, that includes Netflix’s latest adaptation simply titled, Carmen Sandiego.
While most episodes of this franchise focus on gamers working for ACME as they try to catch Carmen and her henchmen, the Netflix show instead focuses on Carmen’s origin story. . Like a Robin Hood-esque, Carmen robs the evil organization known as VILE to give back to the rightful owners, while trying to uncover her lost past.
DOTA: Dragon’s Blood (2021 – )
After the success of Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) Defense of the Ancients (DOTA), which was a community created mod for Warcraft III: Reign of ChaosValve acquired the intellectual property and started an entire franchise starting with DOTA 2 in 2013. Now this sequel is the basis for the currently ongoing Netflix epic fantasy series DOTA: Dragon’s Blood.
While witnessing a battle between the demon Terrorblade and an Elder Dragon, known as Eldwurm, named Slyrak, the Dragon Knight Davion fuses his soul with Slyrak. Despite spending his entire life as a dragon hunter, Davion must now use his new dragon powers to stop Terrorblade from collecting dragon souls and using them to recreate the universe.
Sonic X (2003 – 2006)
Although there have been several anime shows based on the sonic the hedgehog franchise, anime sonic x is often considered the best series, which consists of three seasons that contain a total of 78 episodes. As Sonic, Tails, and Amy battle Doctor Eggman to save Cream and Cheese, a robot accidentally shoots all seven Chaos Emeralds and the resulting “Chaos Control” explosion teleports everyone from their planet to Earth.
After befriending a human boy named Chris Thorndyke, Sonic and his friends attempt to retrieve the Chaos Emeralds while acclimating to this new world. While the writing isn’t always the best, the hilarious storylines, amusing characterizations, and game tie-ins make anime an interesting experience.
Castlevania (2017 – 2021)
Mainly based on the 1989 action platformer Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse, Castlevania is a Netflix animated series that follows vampire hunter Trevor Belmont, sorceress Sypha Belnades, and Dracula’s dhampir son, Alucard, as they hunt down Dracula in order to save the people of Wallachia from Dracula’s murderous revenge. The show also includes Alucard’s backstory from Castlevania: Symphony of the Night and characters from Castlevania: Curse of Darkness.
Along with having great animation and excellent voice acting, the show also adds new plot details that weren’t in the original games, which creates a deeper narrative. After the success of this series, Netflix is now working on a sequel titled Castlevania: Nocturne.
Arcane (2021 – )
Based on the massif League of Legends universe, Esoteric is an anime series which is also a prequel to the ongoing MOBA game. As tensions between the wealthy city of Piltover and the impoverished underground city of Zaun continue to escalate, two sisters named Vi and Powder, later named Jinx, are torn by the dangers of developing arcane technology.
With a captivating story, beautiful animation, impactful characters and an excellent soundtrack, Esoteric is a series that is more than just an adaptation. Instead, the strong plot, detailed world, and new characters lead to an ongoing show that stands on its own.
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