Should There Be A Guild Wars Movie?
Movie adaptations, be it a game, a comic, or a book, can be very hit and miss. For every successful adaptation, there is a litter of poorly-received, low-budget, ones. This is more for game adaptations whose downfall is usually the high expectations of gamers who expect to see a movie that is absolutely in line with the game, keeps all the characters, creates no new subplot that is absent from the games and is high quality. A high order if ever there was one.
For the uninitiated, Guild Wars is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed by ArenaNet. Since its debut in 2005, it has spurn other sequels and books set in the same universe. The critically-acclaimed game involves players controlling a 3D avatar as they set out to lead a people to victory and fulfill a prophecy. To do this, they interact with the world around them and other players, fight, and build. Each player is imbued with skills that go with the ‘Profession' they pick. These professions include Soldier, Adventurer, and Scholar with each category having sub-categories. Once selected, the profession cannot be changed.
The question now is, with the professions available, the goal of each character, the cost that would go into creating such a world as the one in Guild Wars, should there be a movie? My answer is yes. An unequivocal yes. But there are fears and they are here discussed. The success of a game adaptation is heavily dependent on budget and how much the creators stick to the original storyline. The latter part might not be difficult but the former is Any movie production juggernaut that decides to take such a project on would wonder if it would make the returns to offset the cost incurred.
This can be a difficult thing to do, especially in light of the poor outing of MMORPG adaptions. A case in point is World of Warcraft (WoW), MMORPG with a fanatical and large membership. In 2016, WoW was adapted into a movie. A critically-panned movie, rating a 26% score on Rotten Tomatoes and less than 40% on Metacritic, it still went on to garner $410m from the box office alone from a budget of just over $100m. The bulk of this, however, came from the Chinese market where it opened to great viewership. It made less than $30m in its opening week in the USA. But it is a success still financially and there are talks of a sequel.
That is not enough reason to make a game adaptation as was seen from how badly Assassin's Creed did. Assassin's Creed is a franchise whose games have always garnered global attention. Its premise of a brotherhood of assassins who kill to restore or retain global balance is one many have taken quests for. So, when it was announced that it would be a movie with Michael Fassbender, it looked like a lock-in for critical and financial acclaim. It was not Many saw the crossover from the Animus to real-life as going against the canon and even though it had a large budget, it could only just double it in the box office. Then we have Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within. A disaster. It failed woefully critically and otherwise. This, for the viewers, was not the animation but how it barely incorporated or stayed true to what the Franchise is about.
Mortal Kombat, Resident Evil, Max Payne are all successful adaptations but on the flip side, we have Assassin's Creed, Final Fantasy, Hit man and more So, should Guild Wars be adapted into a movie? Yes, but only if the budget is not low and they would stay as true to the concept as possible. That seems to be the recipe for success for game-movie adaptations.