There have been many FMV (full-motion video) games worth playing than people might realize, despite being viewed primarily as a punchline for many years.
You cannot stop the video game industry with the consistent innovation that comes with each new generation of gaming.
It’s incredible to see how different contemporary video games are from cutting-edge games from even ten years ago. Video games must bravely experiment with emerging technologies and take chances.
Full-motion video games, also known as FMV games, became a common trend in video games during the 1990s.
Furthermore, you’d think that full-motion video games would be extinct given the advancements in gaming technology.
Although portraying characters, cutscenes, and even gameplay in video games using real-life footage and actors has been practiced for decades, the genre has recently experienced something of a resurgence.
Some genre-defying masterpieces have been produced by independent developers using the medium.
The beauty of FMV is that game developers can use it to make games based on any genre they desire. While FMV tends to lend itself to horror most of the time, that isn’t its only application.
In light of this, we’re honoring the greatest FMV games created, emphasizing titles that use more FMV than in-game assets.
Here are some of the best FMV games for game lovers to try for exciting times.
1. Night Trap
While not particularly good and with an acquired taste for the camp B-movie aesthetic, we couldn’t write an FMV article without mentioning Night Trap.
To prevent a group of girls from being eaten by a family of vampires, you must use a series of traps in a home that you control as an agent. Although the game is about as ridiculous as the premise would imply, its legacy cannot be disputed.
Also, the 25th Anniversary Edition on Switch or Steam, which includes the original game with remastered visuals, and a ton of behind-the-scenes content, is the better option if you’re looking to purchase Night Trap these days.
Even though it’s as absurd as video games can be, NightTrap is a good choice if you want a memorable FMV experience.
The point-and-click genre has significantly benefited from the FMV subgenre, and Phantasmagoria is one of the most well-known examples.
Although Phantasmagoria’s gameplay, special effects, and footage could all be considered dated by today’s standards, the game’s legacy has made it wholly deserving of a spot on this list.
Furthermore, in the game, players take control of Adrienne Delaney, a writer who recently moved with her husband Don into a secluded mansion in New England.
You probably know how Phantasmagoria ends if you’ve seen a haunted house movie. Also, one becomes possessed by the same demon that once tormented the magician who lived there a century ago.
Unbelievable gore, brutality, and horror soon follow. This video game is one of the best FMV Games.
3. The Centennial Case: A Shijima Story
It may sound impossible to solve a murder mystery that has been unsolved for 100 years. Still, as The Centennial Case: A Shijima Story demonstrates, the impossible is nothing in video games.
You’ll also be working on three other murder mysteries simultaneously. Haruka Kagami, the main character, will undoubtedly have their work cut out for them, but with the right hints and promising leads, the truth will come out.
Furthermore, the mystery writer Haruka Kagami visits the Shijima family in 2022 in The Centennial Case: A Shijima Story. She then decides to take on four different murder cases that took place at three other points in history.
Also, three distinct phases make up the process of solving these cases as you move from the incident, the reason, and the solution phases to try and piece together the killer’s identity.
4. Five Dates
Five Dates is a dating simulator instead of a horror or thriller game, like many of the other titles on this list of the best FMV games.
Yes, it’s all about going on Zoom dates, making the right decisions, and, ideally, leaving with a partner. It’s enjoyable, lighthearted, and a welcome change.
Furthermore, five Dates, a game created under Covid-19 lockdown conditions, lets you go on Zoom dates with five women while relaxing in your living room via webcam.
Also, to impress the women and ultimately choose three of them for a second date, Vinny must select the appropriate dialogue options.
By the time it is over; hopefully, one of them will want to meet you in person, but you’ll need to play your cards wisely.
5. Night Book
Night Book, a new game created entirely within the confines of Covid-19 lockdown, is a very intriguing idea. It follows online interpreter Loralyn as she reports to work for a night shift.
Also, her client wants her to translate some text from an ancient language, which she is fortunate enough to understand, but doing so would have dire consequences, so this shift will not be like any other day at work for her.
Furthermore, bring on a 90-minute scare fest featuring evil entities, possessed fathers, furious husbands, and much more.
Yes, it’s extravagant—aren’t all FMVs—and its plot may be a little corny and cliched, but it’ll keep you engrossed for the film’s duration.
It’s the ideal thing to spend an evening with because it’s about the length of a movie. This game is one of the best FMV games you should try.
6. The Infectious Madness Of Doctor Dekker
D’Avekki Studios, a business that previously specialized in producing murder mysteries in the form of more conventional dinner party games, has released The Infectious Madness of Doctor Dekker.
Even though this is the company’s first venture into a format similar to a video game, it is still worthwhile your time.
The game’s central mystery is a whodunnit, and you’ll spend your time trying to figure out who killed Doctor Dekker.
The situation is more complex than it first appears. Dr. Dekker doesn’t seem to be your typical victim, and he seems to have left behind a lot of strangeness that needs to be resolved.
Furthermore, doctor Dekker allows you to input text to ask questions, unlike the other games on this list of the best FMV games.
The ability to type anything adds flexibility to how the game is played and investigations unfold. Also, there are a limited number of choices, but there are a variety of endings to discover. There are numerous storylines and side quests to finish as well.
FMV is one way to boost a gaming experience of realism and immersion. Still, Erica goes above and beyond by implementing touch controls for various in-game actions, creating a unique experience.
Also, if you’re a fan of FMV games, Erica is worth checking out, even though it may not have the best reviews of any FMV game ever created.
Erica envisions players taking on the title character’s role, a young woman coping with the trauma of her early years and her father’s mysterious past.
Erica is forced to return to Delphi House, where her parents used to work, after having visions of her father being killed and receiving a severed hand in the mail.
8. Late Shift
Since Wales Interactive has been a significant pioneer for the format over the past few years, we could probably compile an FMV list based solely on their games.
They will likely appear frequently on this list, but for the time being, let’s concentrate on one of their lesser-known titles, Late Shift.
Even though the game doesn’t always turn out well for you, Late Shift is the FMV game if you enjoy high stakes, high-tension heist stories.
The main character of Late Shift, Matt, is a college student who works as a parking attendant and unavoidably becomes involved in London’s criminal underworld.
Also, with a daring heist planned, Matt finds himself in the center of a crisis, where his split-second choices will determine his and others’ fates.
The ability to expose lies or contradictions and present fresh or contradictory evidence are some of the most potent weapons a detective can use when looking into a murder.
That is the main draw of Contradiction: Spot The Liar!, also known as “The All-Video Murder Mystery Adventure,” which is much more cheesy and entertaining.
To look into the death of a young woman named Kate Vine, Detective Jenks will send you to the town of Edenton.
Because she drowned, her death was initially ruled to be a suicide. However, as Jenks looks into the matter, she finds that there may be more going on than first appears.
Furthermore, It is up to the game player to unravel a massive conspiracy involving an organization known as ATLAS as it eventually comes to light.
10. The Shapeshifting Detective
One could argue that a game is an FMV makes it stand out from the competition on its own, but adding something extra does help.
The Shapeshifting Detective is another FMV game from D’Avekki Studios, specializing in creative, unconventional games. The title of the game contains all the information you need to know.
Furthermore, you’ll look into the three leading suspects in Dorota Shaw’s murder, tarot readers who can all foretell murder. However, since the antagonist is chosen randomly at the beginning of each game, you won’t know who carried out the murder.
However, You’ll need to use your ability to shapeshift to switch personas, unearth fresh pieces of evidence, and ultimately catch the murderer before you become the next victim to learn the truth.
11. Telling Lies
Sam Barlow must have found it incredibly difficult to follow up a smash hit like Her Story, but he did a fantastic job with Telling Lies.
Although it may not have to live up to the incredible legacy of his first game, this one has a compelling narrative that holds its own.
Additionally, Logan Marshall-Green from Upgrade plays one of the lead roles, which alone makes it a winner.
In Telling Lies, a group of four characters is brought together by a shocking event. Still, the only way to learn the full story is to search through a stolen NSA database and watch secretly taped videos of each character.
A found footage, horror FMV game about searching through someone’s phone seems about as realistic as horror can get today.
The most frightful scares in horror are frequently the most realistic ones. Simulacra uses that idea as the basis for one of the eeriest and spookiest horror games you’ll ever play. Additionally, it ranks among the best FMV games ever created.
In Simulacra, the player character finds Anna’s phone, and as soon as you see a video of her in trouble, it becomes clear that she has vanished.
Furthermore, you can reach one of several endings by using her phone to piece together the hints of how she ultimately vanished.
Simulacra is the closest thing to searching through a missing girl’s phone you can get, thanks to the game’s many fully developed apps. This video game is one of the best FMV games.
13. Her Story
Her Story, the FMV game that captivated the entire gaming community, could only have been created as an FMV game because it was unlike anything else of its time when it was released in 2015.
Also, her Story was the first game developed by Silent Hill: Origins and Shattered Memories creator Sam Barlow on his own as an independent game developer. Few debuts before or since have been as innovative as that.
In Her Story, the player controls a computer and uses keywords to search through video clips of various police interviews with Hannah Smith, a key suspect in her husband’s disappearance.
14. The Shapeshifting Detective
The Shapeshifting Detective is a good illustration of how the FMV genre has changed in recent years. Although the player has more control than in games like The Bunker, the game’s main features remain over-the-top acting and an intriguing mystery plot.
You’ll start the game by assuming the role of a character named Sam. Also, You arrive in a small town called August, where a local woman has been murdered after a mysterious introduction.
With your unique ability to shapeshift, you’ve been hired as a detective to try to figure out what happened.
15. The Bunker
Although Wales Interactive has released many FMV games over the years, many people consider The Bunker the most memorable and fun, even though its premise is probably the grimmest of all the games on this list.
However, on the day the bombs fell on England, John, a man born in an underground bunker, was under your control. John is all alone and is kept in check by his rigid routines a few decades later.
An alarm inside the bunker naturally interrupts those routines, shattering John’s flimsy hold on his sanity. To learn the truth about what happened all those years ago, he’ll need to delve into the bunker and his long-forgotten recesses to survive. This game is one of the best FMV games.
16. Not For Broadcast
Playing Not For Broadcast is a great way to feel at home because these days, turning on the TV and reading the news often feels like you’re in a parody.
Not For Broadcast is the game for you if you’ve ever wanted to work in a live broadcast station editing what is shown to viewers at home.
Don’t be shocked if you find yourself trying to control your laughter the entire time at the absurdity on screen.
As the National Nightly News’ broadcast manager, you get to edit the wacky celebrities and dubious politicians however you see fit, determining what the viewers at home see.
You get to pick the camera angles, change the headlines, and decide whether toe the party line or stir the pot.