The King of Horror has given the fans a lot of books to read and a lot of both small and big-screen adaptations to watch. But what Stephen King hasn’t given his fans, are games. There are only very few games out there made based on his books, and all of them are lacking good reviews.
But a lot of his novels could become masterpieces if developers would put the work (and the endless hours, days, and years) into them because the universes and the characters that King creates are truly unmatchable.
10/10 The Dark Tower Series
As King himself has said multiple times, the Dark Tower books are his magnum opus, and for a good reason. The eight novels feature some of the most beloved characters in literature and a vast universe that runs parallel (?) with ours and intertwines with it.
This epic adventure features some utterly memorable quotes (“Go then, there are other worlds than these”) and a massive world full of endless possibilities and interesting enemies of various difficulties.
It could either become a single-player RPG in the style of The Witcher 3 or a walking simulator (with a lot of chapters for sure), or whatever else the developers choose to do with it.
In reality, it doesn’t even have to have Roland, the main hero, on it. It could be a whole new experience in that universe, with the player’s own character going through adventures.
9/10 The Stand
Even though there had been some miniseries adaptations of this story, nothing can truly capture the world The Stand created in such a short time. And while that might be true for a lot of books, with this superbly beloved novel that constantly ranks among Stephen King’s fans’ favorites, everyone made clear that they want more.
A game adaptation would finally give some peace to the fans that want to see up close and personal what they would do to survive in this post-apocalyptic world that these previous years became quite familiar to us in real life. A survival/colony builder would definitely suit it.
8/10 Fairy Tale
It might be recent, but Fairy Tale has already taken its place among people’s hearts, and with the movie adaptation already in the works, it has all the potential to become one of the classics.
Fairy Tale follows the story of Charlie, a seventeen-year-old everyday boy who happens upon something extraordinary: the key to a parallel world, which has a lot of problems that need to be fixed, and the possibility of a cure for his best friend, Radar, an adorable dog who accompanies him in everything.
It could be an amazing RPG game, or even a platformer if one wants to take it in this direction. The artistic choices would be endless.
7/10 The Talisman
Co-written with the fabulous Peter Straub, The Talisman is another epic novel that takes place in the Territories, which is, as readers probably guessed, another parallel universe (which also has connections to the Dark Tower series).
In this world, there are the “twinners,” which are the parallel selves of every person in our world, and, as readers probably guessed again, they cannot co-exist, but they can switch from world to world.
As Jack Sawyer, who is trying to find a cure for their dying mother, a gamer would have so many possibilities to play this as they wish. They can be evil, they can be good, they could take a shortcut (literally and metaphorically) to find the magical Talisman, or not.
6/10 The Institute
This novel might be often ignored as one of King’s best works, but as a game, it practically writes itself. Luke Ellis has a problem: he, with some other kids with special telekinetic and telepathy abilities, is trapped in the Institute by the evil director Mrs. Sigsby, who wants to extract their powers.
The more they give to her, the more “tokens” they have. The less they give, the more severe the punishment. But the more you give, the less you become until you become nothing but a walking corpse. It doesn’t even need adjustments to be made into a wonderful RPG/prison break game!
5/10 The Bill Hodges Trilogy
Fans who love solving mysteries, better hope that the Bill Hodges trilogy becomes adapted soon.
Apart from the extremely lovable characters of the detective Bill Hodges and his sidekicks Holly Gibney and Jerome Robinson, players would get to meet the absolutely horrendous Brady Hartfield and try to stop him from committing more mass murders. And with three books, developers will have a lot of material to take ideas from.
This one could be a massive open-world game like in the Assassin’s Creed franchise, or it could be a tiny point-and-click mystery roughly twelve minutes long.
Prevent or make sure that President Kennedy is assassinated and see your own world change because of it. And because it’s a Stephen King book and things are never that simple – fans would also have to make a completely new identity from scratch and try not to fall in love or form any kind of attachment.
3/10 Under The Dome
It has been a fan favorite since its publication in 2009 and anyone who reads it understands why. King created a world within a world when the small town of Chester’s Mill in Maine becomes absurdly sealed off from the rest of the world by a huge and unbreakable dome.
Whether it is an RPG or a colony management sim, one thing is for sure: Under The Dome has a lot of potential for becoming an unforgettable game.
2/10 Needful Things
Castle Rock might be fictional, but it is also one of King’s favorite towns to write about. The series might have left fans wanting more, but a game could alter that.
Specifically, if Needful Things were to get an adaptation, the developers would have an array of wonderful possibilities to create this town as scary as they want. A player could either be the owner of the sinister shop that sells only what the person wishes the most, or they could be one of the townspeople that try to bring the evil shopkeeper down.
Even though It made afraid people of clowns since 1986, amazingly, it hasn’t had its own game yet. Amazingly, not only because of the movies and the book’s huge popularity but also because it offers potential choices as a single or even multiplayer RPG.
Who doesn’t want to see The Losers Club prevail over the thing with no name, or experience Pennywise getting absolutely terrified because of a turtle? And surely, with King’s perfect descriptions of Derry, the fictional city where everything takes place, the developers would have at least a pretty clear picture as to what they need to create.
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