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Wheel of Time fantasy books to be games

And films. At least three, apparently.

Film studio Red Eagle Entertainment plans to adapt the immensely popular Wheel of Time fantasy novels into videogames.

These will be developed in-house alongside the big-screen productions, according to VentureBeat - and Red Eagle plans to deliver a new game with every film based on the franchise it releases.

There are even plans for spin-off massively-multiplayer online game.

The Wheel of Time series, written by Robert Jordan (James Oliver Rigney), started with The Eye of the World in 1990. And the film adaptation of this book is already in production.

To date, the series has sold over 44 million copies around the world, with the 12th and final book set to launch in 2009; this will be written by Brandon Sanderson, as Jordan passed away in September 2007.

The Wheel of Time books are long and detailed, and feature magic and characters based on European and Asian mythology: stuff like Hinduism, Buddhism and all that. Maybe there are magical rat people.

We expect an RPG, then, although any concrete details for the project are yet to be announced. Red Eagle is rather confident of its chances, though.

"We've got a huge running start with this property," said Rick Selvage of Red Eagle.

"We expect to have a game based on every movie, and we expect no less than three movies, though that depends on how well each does."

Selvage, who used to manage IBM's global media and entertainment business, has said the game-plans have been met with enthusiasm, and he wants to flesh out the videogame teams in the next couple of months. But not with just anyone - he "wants to hire the rock stars".

Incidentally, Red Eagle Entertainment is not to be confused with Red Eagle Films, which counts "In-'N-Out" and "Maximum Stretch" among its catalogue. Wolfgang Bang directed "Maximum Stretch"; are you sure you don't remember it?

This isn't the first time Wheel of Time has been adapted into a game, incidentally. Those with long memories may recall Legend Entertainment's Unreal Engine-based PC FPS of the same name, based on Jordan's work.