HBO’s GAME OF THRONES will be back soon for a sixth season, and by now you’ve probably seen the teaser and read most of the juicy bits and pieces about the upcoming action. Jon Snow (Kit Harrington) is almost certainly alive in one form or another; Bran (Isaac Hempstead Wright) will be back; and some veteran pros like Max Von Sydow (as the Three-Eyed Raven) and Ian McShane (role unknown) are joining the cast. You can find all kinds of additional tidbits here, but as we await Season 6 of this one-of-a-kind fantasy epic, some fans are hoping for some additional GoT-related content in the form of a new gaming release or two.
TV-based video games aren’t exactly common. It’s not as if you could easily have a meth-cooking, drug-war game based on BREAKING BAD or a political-scheming adventure about HOUSE OF CARDS, after all. However, it’s been surprising how little focus there’s been on using the wildly adventurous story in GAME OF THRONES as the foundation for a major video game.
Actually, there is a new game coming out in the near future, according to this report. A second season of Telltale Games’ episodic GoT title is on the way. It’s essentially a point-and-click, story-based experience, and the game (simply called “Game Of Thrones”) is the biggest GoT title to date. It’s available for Xbox and Playstation consoles as well as Windows, OSX, and Android and iOS devices, and it received generally favourable reviews through its six-episode run. The follow-up is expected to be very similar, but we don’t yet know exactly when it’s going to be released.
Aside from this budding series, games based on GAME OF THRONES are few and far between, and there has yet to be an attempt at a major action/adventure title based on the show. The most well known option may be the “Game Of Thrones Ascent” app game by Disruptor Beam, in which you control your own Westeros adventurer pledging loyalty to the house of your choice and embarking on quests (there are over 3,500 of them). It’s a pretty large experience that will satisfy a lot of fans of both the show and the books, because there are just so many character and setting tie-ins that will be familiar. But again, it’s not exactly an action/adventure game like some would prefer to see for this series.
There’s also a fairly popular online GoT-based game that takes the form of a slot machine arcade. Describing the game, this page poses it as a chance to “set out on your GAME OF THRONES adventure by choosing which house to serve,” indicating the different stakes associated with the different houses and their symbols represented in the slot reel. It’s strangely true to the show (“the Baratheons award the most, a Lannister always pays his debts”) for an online casino game, and it’s surely an effective mechanism for attracting crowds of fans. But while it’s great as a creative option in the online casino genre, it still doesn’t satisfy that lingering need for an action-packed GoT experience.
So as of now, all we can do is imagine the sort of video game that GAME OF THRONES deserves. One of the great achievements of George R.R. Martin and the HBO show runners is the depth with which Westeros and the surrounding lands have been realised and brought to life. That same achievement would seem to serve as a perfect foundation for a massive, open-world adventure series. This show only seems to be gaining popularity heading into its sixth season, so here’s hoping such a game will be on the way before too much longer.