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I just finished The Walking Dead: The Game earlier this week – and damn was it good. I jumped into it later than most and there was a huge amount of hype already behind it. I avoided the spoilers and finished Episode 5 without having anything ruined for me. It was fantastic. TellTale Games did an amazing job of keeping what was most important to The Walking Dead series at the forefront – the characters. How you interacted with them and the relationships you built meant something. When certain characters met ill fates, you felt it. When a major decision needed to be made or when you had to choose sides in an argument, it was grueling. It caused us all to evaluate what relationships were important, and often times did so with only a few seconds to think.

TellTale Games has said that since the overwhelming reception of The Walking Dead they’ve been approached by numerous companies asking them to take on their properties next. TellTale wouldn’t give any names or details of course, but it’s fun to ponder – what other series would TellTale excel at adapting for their next unique adventure? I know their take on The Walking Dead is from Robert Kirkman’s comic universe, but let’s focus on television as our given medium. Today we turn our attention away from yesterday’s article about Dexter and focus on another hugely popular television program…

Game of Thrones

This is probably an obvious choice but it’s impossible to leave out. I saw comments yesterday shouting for this selection and wanted to tell you it was coming. I love the A Song of Ice and Fire series. For those unaware, that’s the overall title of the book series written by George R.R. Martin which the television show is based upon. A Game of Thrones is the name of the first book and really just sounds a whole lot better as a television title.

I know I said we were focusing on television series, and the HBO version is clearly what launched this franchise to super-fame, but for a videogame edition the developer would most certainly have to base their material off of Martin’s novels. Not only does it give TellTale more characters and information to base their version off of, but it gives them more room to work with. Martin has published five novels and thousands of pages of text, HBO is just about to begin its third season. TellTale needs to have the freedom to move through the universe at its own speed to deliver and fun and compelling narrative.

If you think about the universe Martin created within his novels, it doesn’t take long to realize it’s perfect for an amazing recreation. Violent battles, politics, alliances, deception, sex and sacrifice – they’re all plentiful. The fantasy elements would be awesome to see unfold as well. Loads of various magic, warging (telepathic animal control), giants, and “The White Walkers” awaiting dangerously on the other side of The Wall. Oh, and dragons.  Can’t forget the dragons.

Hopefully We'd Get to See These Three in a TellTale Verison

Hopefully We’d Get to See These Three in a TellTale Verison

The locations you could visit in Westeros would be incredible to explore on your own. The Wall would be a treasure to traverse while getting to know The Night’s Watch. Imagine spending time exploring King’s Landing or Winterfell while on your journey. As you venture the seven kingdoms, you’ll find there are dozens of immense castles to explore outside of just those two. There are oceans to sail, mountains to climb and villages to visit. There’s really too much to do actually. And fathom the thought of getting to cross the Narrow Sea and explore Essos. That’s an entirely different continent!

How you tackle Game of Thrones is a bit of an enigma. There’s a plethora of content in the book series to build a basis upon. But what’s somewhat unique about the series is that there isn’t a single main character. In one book you could have over a dozen different point of view characters that help to tell the story. In The Walking Dead we were Lee. We cared about his story and his quest to ensure Clementine remained safe. In Game of Thrones, TellTale would most likely have to follow the same route. Jumping from character to character like the books takes away from the emotional investment you build. Sure you grow to love all the characters, but when you guide half a dozen of them it’s impossible to care for them all the same. That’s why a Game of Thrones TellTale game would have to focus on an individual rather than a group.

There’s a few ways they could make this happen. TellTale could develop an entirely new character specifically for the game. For example, have players take on the role of a knight sometime during the start of the War of the Five Kings. You would need the character to be able to cover great distances. It’s important for the player to experience different locations and meet many of the famous characters from the series. Maybe you make the knight a sellsword? Have them command a company of men and you then decide what side of the battles you want to participate in. Intriguing dialogue and important characters choices would certainly arise. Plus, you would get the benefit of being involved in all of the famous battles you may have read about.

If TellTale wanted to take the opportunity to cast an already existing character as the lead, it may prove more difficult. You would most likely have to take on a character that is little known and has few parts “on-screen.” However, this would help TellTale already have a roadmap for the player. The developer would then just have the opportunity to fill in the blanks as they chose. Or, TellTale may want to select someone that has been more integral to the story and intriguing to the fans. Certainly someone that has had the ability to travel and meet much of the main cast. And defiantly someone that we know hasn’t met an ill fate as of yet. We don’t want to start an adventure as someone we knows dies, do we?

*SPOILERS HERE*

Characters to perhaps think of are Barristan “Whitebeard” Selmy, Jorah Mormont or maybe even fan favorite Tyrion Lannister. Tyrion has done it all if you think about it. He’s visited Winterfell, The Wall, King’s Landing and loads of important locales in-between. He’s even made his way to Essos as of A Dance with Dragons. He’s fought in battles both large and small. And he’s met almost all of the essential cast members. He’s played the political game almost impeccably and he’s lived a life that players could have a blast playing through. The problem? We know what happens. Tyrion’s choices have already been made. Playing as “The Little Lion,” or any existing character, takes what was so crucial to The Walking Dead out – the choices.

*END SPOILERS*

I could sit here for hours and explore the options TellTale could toy with in a Game of Thrones game. The world is just that large and that rich with possibilities.  The fan base is there for sure. Martin has a massive following much like Robert Kirkman and both Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead are television powerhouses. The question for TellTale isn’t why should they, it’s why shouldn’t they? The install base is there. The characters are deep, the world is perfect. And most importantly, the fans want it. So TellTale, give gamers the chance to experience what the universe is all about. Because as many already know, in The Game of Thrones, you win or you die…

GameOfThronesIronThrone

Jeff Scott
A life long Nintendo fan and lover of all things games, Jeff Scott, couldn't be more excited to be writing for OnlySP. When he isn't working the dreaded 9 to 5, he enjoys catching up on movies, great television, and oh yeah - family time when he can fit it in (kidding, honey!). He hopes to blossom from occasional to full time writer at some point. If he doesn't embarrass himself on this site first...

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2 Comments

  1. The fact that there was already a “Game of Thrones” RPG released last year that apparently did not do too well does not bode well for a new title…

    1. I think that the attempt to create an action RPG out of the Game of Thrones franchise is what made that title so lackluster. Just like The Walking Dead is less about killing zombies and more about the lives of the survivors, Game of Thrones is more about politics, treachery, love, and other themes, rather then medieval swordplay. If anyone could tackle those elements in a strong narrative form, it would be Telltale.

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