Every Upcoming Animated Series Based On Video Games
Animated adaptations of video games generally receive more faith from players than their live-action counterparts. That’s understandable; most games are animated in one form or another, so it’s easier to replicate an aesthetic than to find actors and build sets that match the source material exactly. On top of the myriad of live-action shows based on games, there’s an equally sizable, if not larger, slate of animated series on the horizon. If you’re a fan of animated takes on the medium, here’s a snapshot of every upcoming TV series to keep an eye on with trailer links where applicable.
Devil May Cry: The Animated Series
Dante has already gotten the small screen treatment courtesy of the 2007 Devil May Cry anime. In 2018, we found out everyone’s favorite demon hunter is getting an encore. We still don’t know much about the new series. Producer Adi Shankar described the show as being made “by DMC fans for DMC fans,” so expect a faithful adaptation of the video game series at the very least. Shankar recently addressed the long wait, stating that the scripts for Season 1, which consists of eight episodes, are complete, and production would commence early next year. Shankar also confirmed Vergil and Lady will appear and that the story arc will cover multiple seasons.
You’re probably tired of reading Adi Shankar’s name by now, but it turns out the filmmaker has a lot of irons in the animation fire. On top of Captain Laserhawk and Devil May Cry, he’s also got a PUBG show on the assembly line. The series represents Krafton’s desire to diversify PUBG as a brand while also expanding its lore. Unfortunately, there’s next to no information about what the show entails. We may not learn more until one or two of Shankar’s other projects are out the door.
Hyper Light Drifter
Say it with me: Adi Shankar is producing another video game TV show. This one is based on indie darling Hyper Light Drifter, and it was announced in 2019. Shankar and game creator Alx Preston are tag-teaming this effort, describing the visual style as closer to anime while retaining the look of the games without being pixel art. Given that the series was extremely early in development when it was revealed, it has no release window, cast, or available footage. Hyper Light Drifter’s world and lore seem ripe for such an adaptation, so we’re excited to see it resurface.
Legend of Mana: The Teardrop Crystal
The Teardrop Crystal retells the story of Legend of Mana, the PlayStation 1 JRPG that was remastered for modern consoles back in June. The anime is a joint effort by Warner Bros. Japan LLC, Graphinica, Inc., and Yokohama Animation Lab. Fans of the game will have already seen Yokohama’s animation chops in the new Legend of Mana’s opening cinematic. Based on that, we know the show will look good. We’ll have to wait a while to learn more about when The Teardrop Crystal is coming and how to watch it.
Final Fantasy IX
The Paris-based Cyber Group Studios is working on a kid-friendly adaptation of one of Final Fantasy’s most beloved (and underrated) entries. Final Fantasy IX will target children ages 8-13. Before older fans worry about what that means for the story, consider that Disney’s animated classics kill off beloved characters left and right. Final Fantasy IX’s darkest moments could be preserved, but that all depends on the direction Cyber Group wants to go. Reportedly, development begins either around this time or early 2022, so we likely won’t be seeing Zidane and Co.’s small screen debuts for some time.
In 2019, Ubisoft announced plans to adapt several of its IP to the small screen with a kid-friendly slant. Thus, its cartoony take on Watch Dogs won’t be what fans remember. The untitled show will be tamer than its Mature-rated source material, dubbed a “cybermystery” mainly aimed at tweens. It stars a teenage hacker solving crimes in her high school, and its lore is divorced from the continuity of the games.
Rayman is no stranger to the animated series treatment, having a brief series of cartoon shorts in 1999/2000. His next outing will be a comedy adventure, though no other information exists beyond that. The concept art above seemingly confirms the show will appear visually similar to Rayman Origins/Legends, so it’s already off to a good start.
Hungry Shark Squad
Some of you be asking, “What the heck is Hungry Shark?” It’s a series of mobile games published by Ubisoft where you control a variety of sharks and swim around eating things. That’s the basic gist, though this kids’ cartoon follows a team of retired mercenaries, also sharks, that fight bad guys. That sounds like a shark-tastic time for the tykes in your home.
Sucker Punch’s thieving raccoon may have the most tumultuous history of any show on this list. Sly Cooper first came to light in 2017 with Technicolor Animation Productions (Sonic Boom) at the helm and PGS Entertainment as the distributor. It would have 52 11-minute episodes divided into two seasons, premiering in 2019 and 2020. However, the show never materialized and was later delisted from the websites of both companies. Some speculated the companies quietly canceled the show, but another rumor was that Sony Interactive Entertainment bought back the rights to produce the series in-house. Neither outcome is confirmed, and the show’s status is currently one big question mark, much like Sly’s long-lost (and probably canceled) animated movie.
Which animated series are you most looking forward to watching? Let us know in the comments!
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