Comics are more popular than ever. With the amount of licensing and toys available for these colorful characters, it boggles the mind that companies haven’t been trying to cash in with more video games. The opportunities are definitely there with the big two comic publishers prepping for the next phases in their respective rollout plans. Marvel Comics has the second season of Daredevil set for 2016 and things are looking good for the upcoming Jessica Jones series this fall. On the other side of the table, DC Comics has Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and the Wonder Woman film coming in 2016 and 2017, respectively. With major studio movies, popular comics and a cavalcade of toys, these characters should be able to sell video game on their own. Even Ant-Man got his own pinball table for crying out loud! Here’s our selection of some of the most criminally overlooked comic book characters that deserve a game half as super as they are.
It’s an obvious pick but also one that has defied logic for years. How hard can it really be to make half-decent Superman game? The last Superman video game was Superman Returns (based on the critically panned movie of the same name) in 2006. While it wasn’t quite as bad as the legendarily crappy Superman 64, it was torn apart by critics for altogether-bad gameplay, graphics, and controls. After the second try was a flop, the company has been hesitant to give things another go with the Man of Steel. But with the upcoming movie, it’d behoove DC to try again. There are rumors that a new Superman game is going to be developed by WB Games Montreal, the studio that developed Batman: Arkham Origins. Given the track record of the last son of Krypton, though, we’ll believe it when we see it. Here’s hoping the third time’s a charm.
This is another one that is a mind-boggling missed opportunity for DC Comics. Despite being the marquee super-heroine, Wonder Woman has never gotten the respect she deserves when it comes to video games. It wouldn’t even be that hard. You could basically re-skin your standard action game like Darksiders or God of War with a Wonder Woman theme and sit back and watch the money roll in. Hopefully someone will wise up and get on the ball in advance of the Amazonian warrior’s appearance in the upcoming Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice as well as her own standalone movie.
A Daredevil game has all the potential to be amazing, but the hero’s luck in video games seems to be about as good as his luck in the comics (which is terrible). The Man Without Fear had a lackluster 2003 outing on the Game Boy Advance, and he also has a themed slot machine alongside a range of other Marvel-themed games hosted on Betfair. However, the blind hero from Hell’s Kitchen has yet to receive his own proper console title. The multiple vision modes (like “detective vision”) that were introduced in Batman’s Arkham franchise could translate well to Daredevil. Also, with the overwhelmingly positive reaction to the Netflix original series Marvel would have to be blind to not see this golden opportunity.
Like many of the heroes on this list, it isn’t that they’ve never tried to make a game for them, just that these attempts have been abominably bad. There actually was an Aquaman video game that came out in 2003 for the Xbox and Gamecube, Aquaman: Battle for Atlantis. The title hit Superman 64 levels of stink and the character’s reputation has never quite recovered (although to be fair, DC did a lot of that itself). But with a new Aquaman movie in the works with Jason Momoa (Khal Drogo of Game of Thrones) as the Atlantean King, there’s never been a better time for DC to test the waters one more time.
The only game ever made for The Flash came out for the Sega Master System in 1993. The Flash did have a game that was called off in 2007, though. Despite some very promising screenshots and gameplay teasers, it was over before it began. It’s a shame because the new TV series is a lot of fun and has boosted the popularity of the scarlet speedster. For fans of the show, DC can’t make a Flash game fast enough.