Movies based on video games have always had a rocky history. With most adaptations not understanding the source material, or changing too much to be recognizable, it’s safe to say that it hasn’t always been the memorable and exciting live-action rendition of video games fans have loved, and perhaps the budgets have something to do with that.


Every Five Nights At Freddy’s Game, Ranked

No matter how one feels about the original game and its many sequels, it seems fair to say that FNaF has forever changed the indie horror genre.

Whether these video game movies were great, okay, or pretty bad, the consistency between them is that they have a pretty low budget, which is rather surprising considering the decent layer of special effects and effort that went into making them.

5 Five Nights At Freddy’s (2023)

$20 Million Budget


  • Rotten Tomatoes Score: 32%
  • Release Date: 25 October 2023
  • Director: Emma Tammi

A smash hit video game series involving a security guard working at a pizzeria filled with hostile animatronics, Five Nights at Freddy’s received the motion picture treatment on a surprisingly low budget. When looking at the animatronics like Freddy Fazbear, Chica, Bonnie, and Foxy, one would assume that the budget is pretty high, as they look like they’ve been taken straight from the game.

However, Five Nights at Freddy’s budget is reportedly just 20,000,000 US dollars, which is extremely low, especially when one considers how bloated budgets can be in the modern movie-making world of 2023. The lack of budget is a calling card of Blumhouse Productions, who work on making cheap horror movies.

4 Ratchet & Clank (2016)

$20 Million Budget

Official cover art of the Ratchet & Clank remake.

  • Rotten Tomatoes Score: 22%
  • Release Date: 29 April 2016
  • Director: Kevin Munroe, Jericca Cleland

Sony brings the iconic PlayStation characters of Ratchet and Clank to the silver screen in a beautiful-looking animated movie. Ratchet & Clank looks like it was taken straight from a modern game cutscene, and whilst it wasn’t the most favorable of animated movies, it is certainly cheaper than one might expect from its quality.


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The PlayStation brand has a series of long-running franchises for fans to enjoy stretching back to the PS1.

Ratchet & Clank had a pretty small budget for an animated movie, and unfortunately, its box office returns didn’t warrant a continuation of Sony’s PlayStation characters receiving movies for a few years after. The film itself is a fun origin for how Ratchet and Clank join the Galactic Rangers to stop the evil Drek.

3 Mortal Kombat (2021)

$55 Million Budget

Sub Zero freezing shotgun blast Mortal Kombat 2021

  • Rotten Tomatoes Score: 55%
  • Release Date: 17 May 2021
  • Director: Simon McQuoid

Bringing new audiences into the gory Mortal Kombat franchise, the movie attempted to provide a catalyst to learn more about the realms and characters by following a failing MMA fighter, Cole Young. Mortal Kombat is a fairly safe and violent origin point for the famed fighter game series, and with the budget being a humble $55,000,000, it’s no surprise that a sequel was able to develop.

Mortal Kombat (2021) might have had a smaller budget for a few reasons. Firstly, it didn’t open in many theaters due to the ongoing pandemic, and its relatively small but loyal release on HBO Max allowed audience members to see these iconic characters put to screen with restrictive twists to keep the budget low.

2 Need For Speed (2014)

$66 Million Budget

aaron paul in Need For Speed

  • Rotten Tomatoes Score: 39%
  • Release Date: 12 March 2014
  • Director: Scott Waugh

Fresh off of the success of Breaking Bad, Aaron Paul retired Jesse Pinkman to become Tobey Marshall, a street racer who must clear his name and get revenge on those who wronged him. Need For Speed’s $66,000,000 budget might come from a few factors, like hiring the star power of Aaron Paul and using a range of exciting vehicles that get into some risky and troublesome street races.



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The cars are definitely something worth investing into, and if Need For Speed wants to excel at adrenaline-fueled races, then it’s going to need every dollar of its budget to put in some risk. Whilst $66,000,000 might seem higher than other video game movies, it’s still one of the cheaper options out there for 2014.

1 Street Fighter (1994)

$35 Million Budget

Street Fighter Movies- SF The Movie

  • Rotten Tomatoes Score: 11%
  • Release Date: 19 May 1995
  • Director: Steven E. de Souza

Despite a relatively small budget and a lackluster critical reception, Street Fighter (1994) has remained culturally relevant to the point where a reboot is in the works, and new Street Fighter games continue to flourish. Street Fighter is also reportedly still making money for Capcom, even years after its mediocre release for one of the earliest iterations of a video game movie.

The movie itself follows comical and camp Street Fighter characters like Gulle and Bison, and audiences might be shocked at its ¥4 billion budget until they see that the exchange equates to around $35,000,000. Street Fighter might not be the best, but it certainly has its moments of fun, especially for a budget of its size.



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