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Four Old School Video Games That Should Be Comic Books

I’ve been thoroughly enjoying Archie Comics’ Mega Man but it got me thinking besides a few notable exceptions why aren’t there more comic books based on old school video games? It seems like a strange oversight. Perhaps there’s an issue acquiring the legal rights, but never the less here is a hastily assembled list (with a little help from Arthur Harkness) of those that I feel could transition flawlessly.

1. The Final Fantasy Series 

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Even if you only adapted the first 3 U.S. releases in the series you’d still have enough story to make a killer book. There’s a significant lack of high fantasy books on the shelf to begin with, throw in some incredibly iconic looking characters (Black Mage from FF1 anyone?), some cover art by concept designer Yoshitaka Amano and you got yourself a stew/book. The beauty of it is in the first game the plot is pretty basic, but you could incorporate so many more story points while keeping franchise essentials as part of it. The next two games (especially FF3) boast pretty complex storylines that would fit well if it were adapted.

2. Chrono Trigger

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This ones a no brainer. Chrono Trigger has what is probably the best storyline on the SNES combining dystopian future societies, medieval sword play and the prehistoric era, bundled up with time travel, interesting characters and one of the 16 bit era’s most interesting villains. The concept art and character designs were done by Akira Toriyama. If you’re not familiar with Akira he is the mastermind behind Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z not to mention another Nintendo Franchise, Dragon Warrior. I ask you, who better to draw this series? It would take on a manga feel (akin to the cut scenes for its 1999 Playstation re-release). I have a feeling it would go over pretty well.

3. Metroid

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Oh What’s up guys? Arthur sneaking in here real quick to drop some Metroid gold on you. Ok so what do we have? A super awesome female bounty hunter with alien dna ingrained in her entire make up? Check! Oh Chozo, you always know how to treat your girls. Super suit? Check. Super SciFi setting? Check. When you think about it, it’s actually kind of ridiculous that they haven’t made a comic based on Metroid yet, and if they have, then I am just blind to my own fortunes. The wonderful Gamecube games Metroid Prime 1+2 provided us with some excellent new backstory for our favorite bounty hunter that wasn’t as fleshed out in the previous games, and it turns out that she is more deep than we originally thought. a comic series exploring how the Chozo came to be and how they wound up meeting and raising Samus could be amazing. Samus herself could even benefit from some more serialized adventures. We all know she has some reoccurring enemies in the Space Pirates and Ridley, so her rogues gallery is a no brainer already. Hell, Ridley has survived so many defeats that we could easily make an entire series of just Ridley trying to figure out a way to finally kill Samus. Samus really needs to come to the comic scene and quick. We are sorely missing out on some deep space adventures. Besides, Samus traverses the universe and hunts down horrible creatures…….how is that not already ripe for translation? Come on Nintendo, give us what we want. Some deep space bounty hunting.

4. The Legend Of Zelda Series

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There have been countless Zelda mangas released starting with A Link To The Past and going forward. Hell, even a straight up comic book adaption in the pages of Nintendo Power. To date though, no one has tackled the first two NES games. The Legend Of Zelda as with the first Final Fantasy game has a pretty loose narrative so it would give the writer lots of room to stretch out. It’s sequel (one of the few true story sequels in the franchise) would fit comfortably as the ongoing series of the protagonist but also incorporate elements of some of the future games. It could give an indepth history of the Triforce and Hyrule and take a look at what it means to be Princess Zelda. I truly think if done right, this could be a major cash cow for a company.

This list is far from exhaustive so if you got some more suggestions, let me know.

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About Biff Tannen

Film Noir, Pulp, Comic Books and Hitchcock.

Posted on December 31, 2013, in COMICS!, Video Games and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. TIm, this is amazing! Thank you. Do any english translations of this exist?

  2. There are actually at least two mangas for “Zelda II”. One of them is this:

    http://www.historyofhyrule.com/publications/manga_aol_wan1/downloads.html

    That one seems to be pretty close to the game, even using the actual map from the game.

  3. These are all great choices. What counts as “old school” though?

    What about a Star Fox series? Space ships and anthropomorphic creatures should make for an interesting read. F Zero could be fun. They’re would be all the high stakes races, intrigue, bananas in the tailpipes and career ending crashes. But we could also learn about the people behind the… er… wheel?

    What about making a comic out of Comix Zone (1995, SEGA)? A comic book based on a video game about a comic book… Or maybe that would boggle people’s minds.

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