The use of film franchising in games

There’s no hiding the fact that if a film is a success on screen, it’s quickly followed by an endless array of merchandise to tempt die-hard fans and keep the cash rolling in.

From toys to bedcovers, stationery and gadgets, there’s not much that hasn’t been created for the loyal movie fan seeking their very own piece of the action. It’s film franchises, however, that are able to monopolise on fandoms wanting more and more. Entire worlds are created off the back of these franchises that can go on to make more money than the actual films themselves, such as Universal’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter and the billions worth of merchandise that has proceeded it.

One market in particular that has capitalized on the popularity of these film franchises is the games industry. Even as far back as the 70s, when it was the norm to frequent arcades to get our gaming thrills, has the industry been taking inspiration from iconic films to feature as the theme of their games. Jaws and James Bond were the pioneers of this trend as developers spotted an opportunity to produce games from the demand created by their cult following.

Ever since their conception, an unfathomable amount of games have since joined their ranks, all based upon popular film franchises and the demand is serious business. Action, animation and children’s films seem to be the most popular genre of franchises to be made into games.

As these franchises have evolved, so has technology, taking this trend to span across all gaming platforms – from boardgames to apps, arcade machines to video games, and even online slots games to handheld consoles. With film franchises having such massive followings it’s understandable that the games versions will be just as popular. Let’s take a look at a selection of some of the most popular ones so far.


GoldenEye 007

Undoubtedly a firm favourite amongst 90s kids is this James Bond inspired video game published by Nintendo. In this first-person shooter game, played on an Nintendo 64, players assume the role of James Bond himself to complete various missions based on the story of the film Goldeneye. Missions are completed by the player being able to meet certain objectives such as rescuing hostages and killing enemies.

There is the option to play in multiplayer split-screen mode where up to four players can choose their own characters and up to five different scenarios. The game was a sell-out success when it debuted in 1997 and is still considered to be one of the greatest video games ever made.


ted Megaways

Catapult forward to today and gaming has taken a different direction, online slots games have taken on a life of their own, with games based on films, music stars and even historic events. This slot is inspired by the loveable foul-mouthed bear, ted, it features a six-reel slot and 117,649 paylines.

Players will find ted references galore throughout the game as the backdrop is the iconic apartment and pay symbols appear as features from the movie. Not only will you have the chance to win free spins with the Thunder Buddy bonus, but you’ll enjoy impressive animations, designs and sound effects.



Another action-packed release on the videogaming scene is born out of inspiration from the Marvel cult-classic Spider-Man. Produced by Insomniac, the game is set in New York from a third-person perspective where players will swing their way through skyscrapers and a stunning Manhattan skyline.

Fans will be able to follow a captivating storyline featuring both Spider-Man and Peter Parker brought to like by stunning graphics as they are presented with a variety of challenges and Spidey-gadgets to unlock. The 2018 PS4 game was celebrated for its fantastic gameplay mechanics and, by some, as one of the bet superhero games ever made.


Wonderbook: Book of Spells

This fully immersive gaming experience, using augmented reality technology, has been inspired by the magical world of Harry Potter. The game can be played on your PlayStation 3, however, a few different components are needed to properly bring this to life, including the PlayStation Eye Camera, PlayStation Move Motion Controller and the Wonderbook.

Once you’re set up, you’ll be transported to an enchanted world written by J.K. Rowling where players can learn spells, duel other wizards and uncover surprises. Even though this is aimed at a child audience, Potter fans will find it just as magical as the reviews suggest.


Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes

One of the most popular film franchises of all time has to be Star Wars as can be seen from the vast selection of games produced in its wake. Fans are now able to easily access a piece of outer galaxy action via their mobile with this app-based game where they will have the opportunity to collect notable characters.

Players must complete battles or daily quests to be able to rise up the levels in this role-play-based game. Available on both iOS and Android, this is an easy and convenient way to game on-the-go.


It’s clear to see that from the mountain of merchandise born from film franchises, the gaming industry have really stepped ahead of the rest and carved out a unique market for themselves. The influence of film franchises in the gaming world will only ever keep evolving as the next blockbuster is bound to inspire an abundance of games in its succession.

It seems that no matter your favourite film genre there will be a way you can immerse yourself in the action by one game or another. The empire of film franchises comes together seamlessly with that of the gaming industry to create a world where players can truly lose themselves and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for this perfect partnership.