26 Fake Video Games in Movies and TV

Hollywood and video games have a messy, abusive relationship. It’s kind of like two brothers who fight a lot.

Video games – the younger brother – looks up to and imitates Hollywood, and Hollywood – the older, cockier brother – returns this devotion with flippant disrespect. In films, video games are often reduced to Atari 2600 bleeps and bloops, or demonic forces that want to kill you. But then Hollywood throws video games a genuine compliment from time to time, like the power to save the universe, just so it’s not too much of a di*k.

Whatever the case, it’s always pretty funny when Hollywood makes this crap up. We’ve collected a wide range of fake video games in movies and TV (26!), and broken them into 3 made-up categories. Enjoy.


The Movie: Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991)
The Game: (Unnamed, but Freddy uses a “Power Glove”)
The Genre: Video Games Are Gonna’ Kill You, Sucka
The Fake:
A good, cheesy, strong example. This fake video game, which Freddy uses to kill a stoner kid, is a part of a whole Hollywood sub-genre of video game references we’ll call “Video Games are Gonna’ Kill You, Sucka.” For Hollywood, video games are often magical demonic tools of torture, and/or devices for corporate or military dominance. Instead of, you know, things that are fun to do with pals while drinking beer.


The Movie: War Games (1983)
The Game: Global Thermonuclear War
The Genre: Video Games Are Gonna’ Kill You, Sucka
The Fake:
The classic example, and one that teachs an important lesson. See, kids, if you get too sucked into your computers, with your ascii graphics and floppy disks, eventually you will trigger a nuclear war. It’s not just that you will die. EVERYONE will die.


The Movie: Avalon (2001)
The Game: Avalon
The Genre: Video Games Are Gonna’ Kill You, Sucka
The Fake:
From Ghost in the Shell director Mamoru Oshii, Avalon is a sepia-toned fantasy film in which the world has become addicted to an illegal war-based MMO called Avalon. Die in the game, and your body is left catotonic in the real world all Matrix style. Yes, it’s the whole “die in the game, and you die in real life” thing, but is very well done. And actress Malgorzata Foremniak is hot.


The Movie: Nirvana (1997)
The Game: Solo (the name of his character)
The Genre: Video Games Are Gonna’ Kill You, Sucka
The Fake:
It isn’t just American films that want video games to ruin your life. It is also Italian films. This one is a cyberpunk film, in which a “computer virus” (a favorite deus ex machina in Hollywood for all sorts of fun), causes a game designer’s virtual-reality character “Solo” to come to life. He goes on a journey to delete it, and also figure out why his girlfriend left him.


The Movie: Nightmares (1983)
The Game: “The Bishop of Battle” (ahahaha!)
The Genre: Video Games Are Gonna’ Kill You, Sucka
The Fake:
Nightmares is one of those 80s horror films that’s a series of vignettes, kind of like Stephen King’s Creep Show. “The Bishop of Battle” short is a wonderful, horrible gem. In it, J.J. Clooney (a young Emilio Estevez), becomes obsessed with trying get to the “13th level” (Ooooo) in this arcade game. When he does, the game comes alive with sweet CGI, and kills him. AND he had bad grades in school to begin with. Video games are super evil in this one.


The Movie: Arcade (1993)
The Game: “Arcade”
The Genre: Video Games Are Gonna’ Kill You, Sucka
The Fake:
Summarzing this one is fun. This computer company is marketing a new virtual reality game, called “Arcade.” It lures kids to an arcade to test it out with all the charm of a creepy guy in a van. When kids play it, in imprisons them in virtual reality world. Why? They used a murdered child’s brain cells to build the game, and it seeks vengeance. Doh!


The Movie: Brainscan (1994)
The Game: “Brainscan”
The Genre: Video Games Are Gonna’ Kill You, Sucka
The Fake:
There’s a twist to this one. It’s not that video games can kill you, but rather that video games make you kill other people. Edward “My Best Film was T2″ Furlong stars as a kid who becomes hypnotized by a computer game, and wakes up from his trance state to discover the murders he committed in the game are real–and he’s the killer. Doh!

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5 Comments on 26 Fake Video Games in Movies and TV


On August 14, 2010 at 1:01 am

Thank god that by page 3 of this there was other categories other than “Video games are gonna kill you, sucka”. I really hate hollywood scare-tactics, and the video-game ones are the worst.

It’s almost like the old people who run hollywood are somehow afraid of new technology! ¬_¬


On August 15, 2010 at 8:35 pm

What about ‘Demonik’ from ‘Grandma’s Boy’… I know the movie wasnt all that great nor a famous one but damn didn’t that game look good… Apparently it really is being developed…


On August 16, 2010 at 9:31 am

bonecrusher is a rapper

Mark Burnham

On August 16, 2010 at 9:41 am

Oops, fixed. We meant Bonestorm of course.


On August 21, 2010 at 2:24 am

have you ever heard of a british show called KillerNet? it was on tv in the nineties i think and was about a video game where you meticulously plan the murder of a person in the superrealistic game and… well you can guess where it’s going. anyway, it’s really good, should’ve been on the list and i’m guessing the only reason it isn’t is because you haven’t seen it. so go see it and update your list