Hank McCoy (Before the Fur)

I think it’s cool that the adventure video game is making a big comeback.

For a long time, Lucasarts were the big kids on the block as far as this went. Lately, there’s been a slew of revivals of this style. Most notably at the hands of Telltale Games, with titles like Sam & Max and Back to the Future.

What I sort of adore about the old-school adventure games is I think they were sort of akin to comic books of that era. They sort of were their own medium, you know? Like in the old days, comics didn’t try to be like movies or novels; they just tried to be like comics.

Adventure games were this way. It was this very different style of entertainment. The designers of the game kind of engaged you, the player, in this one-on-one, thought provoking (and a lot of times comical and cute) experience. You sort of WERE the main character, but then again, you sort of weren’t. You directed the main characters actions, sure.

It’s like Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis (my choice for greatest adventure game ever created). You WERE Indy, on one level, but on another, you just sort of directed Indy and watched what happened.

So you didn’t want to tell Indy to do something that he wouldn’t be able to survive. You had to kind of use Indy the right way. Think the way Indy would think. If you told him to run up to some guy with a gun he’d do it. But he could also get shot if he did.

Whip the gun out of the guy’s hand? Different story.

I’ve never played a style of game that had THIS kind of dynamic embedded in it outside of this genre. They aren’t first-person games. They’re really engaging third-person games. More than just a run and gun third-person. A comprehensive "direct this character’s actions" third-person.

All of this is just a long introduction to talk about the old Fate of Atlantis series by Dark Horse comics. See, Fate of Atlantis really is--in my mind--sort of the lost and forgotten treasure of the Indy franchise.

It should have been Indy 4. That ten year gap between Last Crusade and Kingdom of the Crystal Skull? It should have been filled with the script for this game as a movie.

Dark Horse, at least, had the right idea about this and not long after the game came out they stepped in and made a limited series. And in this sense, we’re talking about a comic series that does feel like a movie.

But the pacing and the style of action is all right-on for an Indy film. Special shout-out to expanded universe character Sophia Hapgood. I know these kinds of additions to movie canon are usually sneered at by a lot of hardcore fans. Sophia really has the making of a cool and interesting Indy companion. A psychic who is something of a con-artist, Sophia is a lot more interested in making a few quick bucks with her talent than she is in archeological research.

You put on top of that the fact that Indy doesn’t really BELIEVE Sophia has some of the abilities she says she does, and you’ve got a formula for romantic tension worthy of a feature film.

So tell me. How did this story EVER get so looked over, as far as screenplays go?