9 Video Game Plotlines You Didn't Realise Were Based On True Stories

Stranger than fiction.


Imagination and originality are often the two qualities required to spin a riveting work of fiction.

To an extent, the proof is in the pudding: inspiration for some of the greatest video game stories ever told have come from nothing but healthy grey matter, but that doesn't mean there's no value in borrowing from the greatest source material known to man - reality - as the basis for fantastical tales because, truth be told, fact often is stranger than fiction.

Team Ninja's hallmark of action-RPG excellence Nioh, for example, lifted the Far Eastern feats of Western Samurai William Adams straight from the history books to deliver its fable of Feudal Japan with embellishments in the form of mythical Kodama spirits, irate demons and mystical magic. That said, glamourised retellings of individuals that led exceptional lives is just one method of bringing specific real-life events to our attention.

For example, L.A. Noire's Cole Phelps never patrolled the streets of Los Angeles, but the cases presented to him were all based on real crimes, meticulously researched and recreated for our investigative pleasure.

Selfless feats of British spies in World War II, unsolved mysteries in the Russian wilderness and chilling explorations of, unfortunately, very real mental institutions: why delve into fiction when such extraordinary true stories like these exist?

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Joe is a freelance games journalist who, while not spending every waking minute selling himself to websites around the world, spends his free time writing. Most of it makes no sense, but when it does, he treats each article as if it were his Magnum Opus - with varying results.