10 Best Games Featuring Hollywood Actors, Ranked

As video game storytelling has progressed, the door has opened for Hollywood actors to lend their talents to the medium’s digital characters.

Highlights

  • Hollywood actors bring depth and artistry to video games, blurring the lines between traditional entertainment mediums.
  • Modern technology allows for cinematic storytelling in games, creating immersive experiences akin to Hollywood movies.
  • Collaborations between the games industry and Hollywood produce standout examples of art, elevating gaming to new levels.

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The video game industry has grown to become one of the most dominant forms of entertainment in the world. With this success comes growth in both graphics and storytelling. Many large studios can now bring in some of the best actors in the world, using their skills to bring digital characters to life. Many of these games have become classics in the genre, with high-level performances helping to elevate their games to new artistic levels.

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With the advances in technology, most notably with motion capture, many games have become cinematic in style, creating interactive experiences that have the depth and scope of Hollywood movies. As these advances continue, more and more Hollywood actors are going to see video games as genuine avenues in which to hone their craft, blurring the line between traditional Hollywood and the games industry even more.

10 Assassin’s Creed

Kristen Bell

Kristen Bell

Assassin’s Creed

Platform(s) PC , PS3 , Xbox 360 Released November 14, 2007 Developer(s) Ubisoft Montreal Genre(s) Open-World , Stealth , Action

The action-adventure game Assassin’s Creed was a breath of fresh air on release. Taking players back in time to the Crusades of the Holy Land, the open-world stealth game follows Assassin Altair as he is tasked with killing off the scheming Templars. The game is rich in detail and heavy on lore.

Set both in the future and the past, the game features the voice talents of actress Kristen Bell, who also lends her likeness to the character. Bell is most known for her TV work on Veronica Mars and The Good Place, and the hit comedy movie Forgetting Sarah Marshall. In the game, Kristen Bell plays the minor role of Lucy Stillman, who would go on to feature in two additional sequels to the game.

9 The Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion

Patrick Stewart, Sean Bean

Martin

The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion

Platform(s) PC , PS3 , Xbox 360 Released March 20, 2006 Developer(s) Bethesda Genre(s) RPG

Bethesda often brings in well-known actors to feature in their vast open-world games, and Oblivion is no different. This fantasy role-playing game allows players to explore a huge open-world map, filled with different characters and monsters.

In the game, Emperor Uriel Septim VII is voiced by actor Sir Patrick Stewart, well-known for playing Professor Charles Xavier in the X-Men franchise, and Jean-Luc Picard in Star Trek: The Next Generation. Joining Stewart in the game, playing Martin, the heir to the throne, is fantasy mainstaySean Bean, well known for his roles as Boromir in Lord of the Rings and Eddard “Ned” Stark in Game of Thrones. Both these actors bring gravitas and personality to these small roles, ensuring the characters are remembered throughout the game.

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8 Fallout 3

Liam Neeson

Liam Neeson

Fallout 3

Platform(s) PS3 , Xbox 360 , PC Released October 28, 2008 Developer(s) Bethesda Genre(s) Shooter , Open-World

The classic action role-playing gameFallout 3 introduced a wide audience to the vast, irradiated wasteland of post-apocalyptic America. In the game, players explore a large open world, meet various strange characters, and fight against the mutated creatures and bloodthirsty raiders that roam the land.

Of all the characters in the game, the one that has the most impact on the story is the player’s father, played expertly by The Phantom Menace and Taken’s Liam Neeson. Neeson is the first character the player will meet in the campaign and brings a paternal warmth that lasts throughout the game. In the short time his character is featured, Neeson’s talent prominently stamps his presence on the game.

7 Metal Gear Solid V: Phantom Pain

Kiefer Sutherland

Snake

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

Platform(s) PS4 , PS3 , Xbox One , Xbox 360 , PC Released September 1, 2015 Developer(s) Kojima Productions Genre(s) Action , Open-World

For the ninth entry in the long-running Metal Gear game franchise, Hideo Kojima brought in the considerable voice talents of actor Kiefer Sutherland. The game follows Sutherland’s Punished “Venom” Snake as he fights the evil organization Cipher across various battlefields in Afghanistan and Africa.

The Phantom Pain is primarily a stealth game, where the player needs to plan an attack without being seen as much as possible. Kiefer Sutherland is well known for his action roles, most notably in the TV series 24. This pedigree makes him the perfect choice for the character, who is an expert in espionage warfare. Sutherland brings his trademark no-nonsense grit to the role, voicing the character perfectly in the absence of long-time Snake voice actor David Hayter.

6 Cyberpunk 2077

Keanu Reeves, Idris Elba

Keanu

Cyberpunk 2077

Platform(s) PC , Xbox One , Stadia , PS4 , PS5 , Xbox Series S , Xbox Series X Released December 10, 2020 Developer(s) CD Projekt Red Genre(s) RPG , Action

Much of the promotion around Cyberpunk 2077 featured Hollywood superstar Keanu Reaves playing Johnny Silverhand, a central figure in the narrative and lore. The popularity of the actor only added to the hype of the game, which unfortunately suffered one of the rockiest releases in gaming history. Riddled with bugs, the game was near-unplayable on previous-generation consoles.

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Cyberpunk 2077 has gradually made up for this since its release and has grown in popularity, with the recent DLC, Phantom Liberty, gaining critical acclaim. In addition to Keanu Reeves, actor Idris Elba was added to the game in Phantom Liberty, playing Solomon Reed. Both actors are used for their voice and likeness, with Keanu Reeves’s background in sci-fi bringing a high level of credibility to the game.

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5 Mass Effect 2 & 3

Martin Sheen

The Illusive Man

Mass Effect: Legendary Edition

Platform(s) PC , PS4 , Xbox One Released May 14, 2021 Developer(s) BioWare Genre(s) Action , RPG

The Mass Effect series is one of the most beloved franchises in gaming history. It tells the story of Commander Shepard’s fight to save the galaxy from the unstoppable Reapers. Set over three games, Mass Effect is epic in scale and features a wide variety of characters and enemies for players to interact with.

Throughout the series, one of the central antagonists, who is known only as The Illusive Man, is played by the brilliant Martin Sheen. The actor, well-known for his roles in Apocalypse Now, The Departed, and TV series The West Wing, brings his long years of experience to the role, lending his voice to an intimidating and mysterious character who easily commands every scene he is in.

4 Until Dawn

Rami Malek, Hayden Panettiere

Rami Malik

Until Dawn

Platform(s) PS4 Released August 25, 2015 Developer(s) Supermassive Games Genre(s) Horror

Until Dawn is an interactive horror game from developers Supermassive Games, known for their cinematic narrative-based titles. In Until Dawn, players make choices and experience quick-time events, which can decide the fate of the characters. Anyone can die in the game, and it’s up to the player to decide who lives and who dies a gruesome death. Like many low-budget horror movies, Until Dawn featured a cast of up-and-coming actors who lent their voice talents and likeness to the game, specifically through motion capture.

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The then largely-unknown actor Rami Malek starred in the game, who would go on to find success in movies like Bohemian Rhapsody, No Time To Die, and Oppenheimer, as well as the iconic TV series Mr. Robot. Also lending her voice and likeness to the game was Hayden Panettiere, perhaps the better-known actor at the time, having appeared in TV series Heroes and Nashville, as well as Scream 4. The game enjoyed critical success, becoming a best-selling title. A remake is set to release later in 2024.

3 The Quarry

David Arquette, Lance Henrikson, Lin Shaye, Ted Raimi

David Arquette

The Quarry

Platform(s) PC , PS4 , PS5 , Xbox One , Xbox Series X , Xbox Series S Released June 10, 2022 Developer(s) Supermassive Games Genre(s) Survival Horror

Seen as the spiritual successor to Until Dawn, Supermassive Games does it again with The Quarry, another interactive horror game that uses a cinematic style to tell its story. The game uses common horror tropes as its core but has an impressive 186 possible endings.

Featuring an assortment of well-known actors, who lend both their voices and likenesses to the game, The Quarry uses quick time events and player choices to decide the fates of the characters. Anyone can die in the game in various horrific and often bloody ways. Genre legends Lance Henrikson, of Aliens and The Terminator fame, and Ted Raimi, brother of Evil Dead and Spider-Man director Sam Raimi, bring added horror prestige to the game, while the rest of the cast, including Scream’sDavid Arquette and Insidious’ Lin Shaye, put in great performances all around.

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2 Death Stranding

Norman Reedus, Léa Seydoux, Mads Mikkelsen, Guillermo del Toro, Nicolas Winding Refn

Mads

Death Stranding

Platform(s) PS4 , PS5 , PC Released November 8, 2019 Developer(s) Kojima Productions Genre(s) Action

Hideo Kojima’s return to gaming after his split with Konami, Death Stranding features an all-star cast led by TheBoondock Saints and The Walking Dead’sNorman Reedus. The game features some great performances, using modern technology to capture the skilled actor’s nuanced performances. Death Stranding is set in a post-apocalyptic open world which players traverse as Reedus’ Sam “Porter” Bridges, delivering goods between settlements.

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Death Stranding is a big-budget game advertised much like a movie, with its stars front and center providing voices and likenesses for the characters. In addition to the main cast of actors, including Specter and No Time to Die’sLéa Seydoux and Casino Royale’s Mads Mikkelsen, several film directors were also featured in the game, most notably Oscar winner Guillermo del Toro (in likeness only) and Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn. Death Stranding is a stand-out example of the games industry and Hollywood collaborating successfully to create new art.

1 Beyond: Two Souls

Elliot Page, Willem Dafoe

Willam Defoe

Beyond: Two Souls

Platform(s) PS4 , PS3 , PC Released October 8, 2013 Developer(s) Quantic Dream Genre(s) Adventure

Beyond: Two Souls was a groundbreaking game on release. It was one of a few titles that attempted a more mature experience for players, pushing a cinematic style that has become more prevalent in recent years. It even premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, raising its credibility as a serious artistic piece.

Featuring actors Elliot Page of Juno and Inception, and the legendary Willem Dafoe, the game revolves around two playable characters that have been psychically linked since birth. The game is an action-adventure title where the actors involved not only voiced the characters but performed on set using motion capture technology. This technique allowed for greater creativity from the actors, who could react in real-time to each other. Although technology has moved forward since its development, this game still stands as a benchmark for narrative-based games of this style that use real actors to bring digital characters to life.

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Fuente: successacademy.edu.vn
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