A new video game adaptation of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT) is in the works, and it’s reportedly set to have a grim, dark tone. Polygon reports that the acclaimed 2020 TMNT graphic novel, The Last Ronin has been chosen to be adapted into a third-person action role-playing game, with Santa Monica Studio’s God of War to be its primary touchstone.
Doug Rosen, Senior Vice President of Games and Emerging Media at Paramount Global, shared the news with Polygon, in which he made the God of War comparison. According to Polygon’s reporting, the game is being developed by a currently unnamed studio, though its release is likely a ‘few years off,’ according to Rosen.
However, Rosen believes that the company has found the ‘right partner to adapt The Last Ronin into an ambitious AAA video game,’ according to Polygon.
While the Ninja Turtles are most widely known for being a family-friendly property, revolving around the action-packed antics of four teenage turtle brothers, The Last Ronin was a return to the property’s more mature origins.
Penned by TMNT creators Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, as well as Tom Waltz and Andy Kuhn, The Last Ronin is a 5-issue miniseries set in a dystopian future where only one of the four Ninja Turtle brothers – Michaelangelo – has survived. Utilising all four of the iconic weapons of the Turtles – katanas, sai, bo staff, and nunchaku – he seeks to avenge his family and friends. On paper, it seems like a very workable premise for a single-player blockbuster action game.
The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are having somewhat of a comeback in the video game space at the time of writing, with the four-person arcade brawler, TMNT: Shredder’s Revenge releasing to very positive acclaim. The title echoed the style of the well-regarded 1990s TMNT arcade games by Konami, with modern refinements. It was released on consoles as well as part of the game offering on Netflix.
A follow-up series to The Last Ronin, subtitled The Lost Years, was released in 2023.