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The student news site of Sacramento State University

The State Hornet

The student news site of Sacramento State University

The State Hornet

Student news without fear or favor

Level up: Video game adaptations on the big and small screen

How video games inspire adaptations for screens big and small
Mia Huss
Popular video games like “Fallout” and “League of Legends” have taken to the big screen within the past few years. Fans enjoy the expansion of their favorite fandoms and virtual worlds. (Graphic created in Canva by Mia Huss)

Iconic characters from gaming consoles have leveled up to the big screen, creating a rise in film and television show adaptations that have captivated audiences worldwide.

Video game adaptations bridge the gap between gaming culture and mainstream entertainment, by enriching stories and reeling in fans through various mediums.

Gamers at Sacramento State weigh in on these adaptations of their favorite video games, like “Fallout,” “League of Legends,” “Five Nights at Freddy’s,” “The Last of Us” and “Castlevania.”


“Fallout” is a post-apocalyptic role-playing video game, with nine main games and 13 expansions. There are eight home console games and one on mobile devices. (Photo courtesy of Fallout/Amazon Prime, graphic created in Canva by Mia Huss)

For over two decades, “Fallout” has attracted gamers with its plot about moral dilemmas and the fight for existence in a post-apocalyptic landscape scarred by nuclear destruction.

“Fallout” was first released in 1997, but since then, the series has released nine main games and 13 expansions.

Amazon Prime tells an original story of its new adaptation, which takes place 219 years after an apocalyptic nuclear exchange that kills most of humanity.

The show stars Ella Purnell, who plays Lucy, a resident of the fallout bunker Vault 33, where humans hide during a nuclear war.

Lucy leaves the safety of the vault to explore the ruins of a post-nuclear world where she discovers a brutal, savage and violent Los Angeles.

The show is now streaming on Amazon Prime.


“League of Legends” is an online multiplayer battle arena game, where players can choose a character with different powers. The TV adaptation is called “Arcane” and can be streamed on Netflix. (Photo courtesy of Arcane/Netflix, graphic created in Canva by Mia Huss)

In the ever-expanding universe of video game adaptations, “Arcane” uses a masterful blend of storytelling and animation to captivate its viewers into the universe of its game counterpart.

League of Legends” was released in 2009, as a multiplayer game by Riot Games who have also released other games like “Valorant,” “League of Legends: Wild Rift” and “Teamfight Tactics.”

In the show, the cities of Piltover and Zaun, a revelation looms on the horizon that will change their world. Amidst the bustling streets and towering buildings, tension begins to stir against both cities.

Two sisters try to survive a world full of politicians, crime lords, inventors and thieves in a conflict between the twin cities, while a discovery of new technology changes everything.

Second-year health science major Anthony Vo said, he loves the “League of Legends” game for its soundtrack, the gaming community and the TV adaptation.

Imagine Dragons’ is an artist that is part of the soundtrack,” Vo said. “You have one of the best classical musicians, Ray Chen, being a part of the soundtrack too; 11 out of 10 for the music, animation and esports side of things.”

Vo said the first season of “Arcane” was good and that he was happy the series depicted the game properly.

“The different characters that they used and the region that they chose to focus on was on point,” Vo said. “‘Arcane’ is a good show, watch it y’all.”

“Five Nights at Freddy’s”

“Five Nights at Freddy’s” is a popular horror video game, with creepy animatronic characters. The film released in 2023, based on the game, is one of the most accurate video game films. (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures, graphic created in Canva by Mia Huss)

For those seeking a chilling adaptation of a video game that instills fear of animatronics and robots, “Five Nights At Freddy’s” is the perfect choice.

Scott Cawthon created the “Five Nights at Freddy’s” franchise in 2014, and it currently consists of nine games, four spin-off games and a movie that tells the story of fluffy and murderous animatronics.

In the film, a security guard named Mike Schmidt, played by Josh Hutcherson, is offered a job at Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza, but on his first night, he realizes the place is haunted.

Ghosts of children from the 1980s possess the animatronic dolls in Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza and torment the security guard and whoever else enters the building.

Junior graphic design major Maria Estrada is a “Five Nights at Freddy’s” fan, who grew up playing the game and enjoyed the 2023 film.

“I really enjoy how the movie basically takes the original storyline of the games and expands upon it,” Estrada said. “It’s great to see these storylines that were only ever imagined in our minds, turned into real life.”

Junior biochemistry major Matthew Bravo said he also grew up with the “Five Nights at Freddy’s” games and seeing a film about a part of his childhood is nostalgic.

“I think the movie adaptation did a really good job,” Bravo said. “They told a different but interesting story while still using all the main pieces from the game.”

“The Last of Us”

“The Last of Us” is about a pandemic that leads to a zombie apocalypse. The main characters in both the film and video game are trying to stay alive and find the antidote. (Photo courtesy of The Last of Us/HBO, graphic created in Canva made by Mia Huss)

From the star-studded cast in the HBO series to the adrenaline rush players get while playing the game, “The Last of Us” has brought fans from across the world who love post-apocalyptic storylines.

The game was first released in 2013, as an action-adventure game that takes place in the United States that is infested with humans, who are infected by a mutated fungus. There are three games in the series called, The Last of Us I, Left Behind and The Last of Us II.

The Last of Us” series is set 20 years after modern civilization has been destroyed. The story follows the immune main characters as they navigate an apocalyptic world ravaged by zombies, while they safeguard a young girl and safely deliver the zombie anecdote.

The HBO series has a star-studded cast featuring Pedro Pascal, Bella Ramsey and Nick Offerman.

Pascal’s character, Joel Miller, is tasked with taking Ramsey’s character, Ellie, across the United States who is the key factor in saving the rest of humanity.

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“Castlevania” has been around since the 1980s and brings fans together in more ways than one. The TV show adaptation on Netflix is another way for fans to enjoy their favorite characters and the exciting storyline. (Photo courtesy of Netflix via Apple TV, graphic created in Canva by Mia Huss)

Since its inception in the late 1980s “Castlevania” has cast players into a world filled with gothic horror and is a timeless classic in the pantheon of video game lore.

The game has been released on many different platforms such as mobile phones and consoles and is an action-adventure game.

The original “Castlevania” show follows Trevor Belmont, the last survivor of his clan, trying to liberate Eastern Europe from the clutches of Vlad Dracula Tepes and his legion of monstrous forces who take over Wallachia.

In order to take down Dracula, Trevor seeks the help of magician Syhpa Belnades and Dracula’s son Alucard.

Netflix released a sequel to the original show called “Castlevania: Nocturne” which follows a descendant from the Belmont family, who fights against a ruthless vampire leader.

Third-year political science journalism major Natalie Stegall said her girlfriend introduced her to “Castlevania” and she’s been hooked ever since.

“I was drawn in by the style of animation and the visuals,” Stegall said. “The lightning and backgrounds in Castlevania are really unique to the show and I haven’t really seen anything like that before.”

From childhood favorites to post-apocalyptic thrills, these video game adaptations have given fans another way to enjoy their favorite storylines and virtual worlds.

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About the Contributors
Karina Torres
Karina Torres, A&E Staffer
(she/her) Karina Torres is a transfer student from Sierra College and will be graduating in the fall of 2024. Her major is journalism and this is her first semester at The State Hornet. She loves beauty and fashion and would love to pursue a career in that field.
Mia Huss
Mia Huss, A&E Staffer
(she/her) Mia is a graduating senior majoring in political science and journalism. She has worked as a freelance journalist covering local government in her hometown. This is her first semester with The State Hornet.
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