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A Year of Books
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Videogames 'cannot capture literature's charms'

15th February 2010

Literature and computer games are unlikely to work well together despite the best efforts of software developers, according to one commentator.

Digital Spy gaming reporter Liam Martin pointed out that several videogames have been crafted from books, such as crossovers from the works of Tom Clancy and J.R.R. Tolkien, but these have been met with varying degrees of success.

The expert noted that adaptations which were highly-regarded tended to spring from works in the warfare or fantasy genres, with relatively few examples outside these sectors.

'Videogames and literature will never be the perfect pairing. Plot, characters and settings are essential to books, while games rely on gameplay, often at the expense of plot,' he explained.

Mr Martin predicted that literary characters and settings will continue to inspire developers, citing the example of the recent videogame adaptation of Dante's Inferno, but suggested the two art forms will remain 'uneasy bedfellows'.

Last year saw the relationship between books and games move in the opposite direction, when Ubisoft Entertainment and Penguin unveiled a novelisation of Assassin's Creed II.

The firms said Assassin's Creed Renaissance was a 'unique collaboration' that provided new ways for the worlds of publishing and computer gaming to intermingle.

© W&G Foyle Ltd
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