You’re never too old to watch a cartoon, which is a mantra that I repeat to myself whenever I watch She-Ra reruns. The great thing about cartoons today though, are that the people behind them have grown up on the same gaming influences that we have, resulting in some truly inspiring animation. Here’s five of the best, for all ages to enjoy.
What time is it? Nostalgic fantasy-sci-fi-kick-ass time! One of the trippiest ideas to emerge from Cartoon network, there’s a lot of heart and soul in this weird little gem. There’s also plenty of gaming references as well, hidden amongst the Dungeons and Dragons atmosphere of Adventure Time, from a sentient handheld console, through to the characters using slang from gaming as part of everyday speech.
It’s crawling with references, is funny, heartwarming and leaves a good taste in your mouth. Plus, it has a lumpy space princess. OH MY LUMPS!
Well, not technically traditional animation, but animation of a stop-motion kind not the less, in this Adult Swim show. You want to see Mario snort crack and run over prostitutes Grand Theft Auto style? You got it! You want to see a version of Dig Dug that should win several prizes at Cannes Film Festival? Man, we got that itch scratched for you!
There are no sacred cows here in Robot Chicken, and seeing classic and modern games being run through a blender of rapid-fire scenarios and gags never gets old. If you’re looking for a more twisted take on some of your favourite titles from yesteryear, you can’t go wrong with Robot Chicken.
The amazing world of Gumball
Right now, the idea of a cutesy cat and his walking goldfish best friend is probably making you roll your eyes so hard, that they’re about to detach. But stay a while, and listen! It may look like a cartoon that mixes adorable with a spoon of sugar, but there are some dark and twisted moments in this kids series, that only adults will appreciate.
As for the video game connection, it’s here in spades. Playing games, interacting with characters clearly influenced by these titles and watching their massively fat father get the snot beaten out of him by a cruel video game shop owner, it’s all there, with a fantastic visual style that complements it perfectly.
Looks like all that ultra-violence from Tom and Jerry cartoons is alive and kicking here.
Giant robots are, and always shall be, awesome. And we’ll always love our gaming. So why not combine the two? That’s exactly what you get in Megas XLR, when New Jersey Slob Coop and his best friend Jaime cruise around town in a massive mech suit that would give the Japanese a rush of blood to the groin.
And that massive weapon of kickass destruction is piloted with an array of gaming controllers, accessories and peripherals, as well as a healthy dose of lucha libre moves being thrown into the mix.
When Michael Bay was told to make a movie that combined robots, destruction, gaming and aliens, his first thought was Megas XLR
At the end of the day, we’re all a bunch of slackers. Or at least in the process of attempting to slack off. That’s the core of Regular Show, as a talking Racoon and Bluebird work in a park populated by a perpetually angry gumball machine, a Yeti who skips everywhere and various nods to retro gaming.
Such as a collection of demonic arcade machines that attempt to destroy the planet, an end-level boss who want go down without a literal fight and a gigantic head who plays games according to “Universe Rules”.
Regular Show is weird and as subtle as being slapped in the face with a steak, and it’s one of the best damn cartoons seen in years.
Last Updated: August 24, 2012