Is Bethesda Really Making a Game of Thrones Game?

A Bethesda’s open world RPG set in the Game of Thrones world. It seems like a match made in franchise heaven and a recent leak has given this dream some traction. Game of Thrones has an unfortunate history of having pretty poor video games set in its world. Aside from a few good mods for certain titles, you really don’t have much to choose from.

A recent leak on retailer Target’s website seemed to suggest that Bethesda is working on a Game of Thrones title. A page appeared on their website with what looks like a placeholder titled ‘Bethesda: Game of Thrones’ as you can imagine, the Internet went wild. No other details were listed and it wasn’t clear at first if this was a simple mistake or something more. There have been murmurs in the past of Bethesda creating a game set in the Game of Thrones world.

Earlier this year Todd Howard the director of Fallout and the Elder Scrolls game stated that Bethesda Game Studios are working on two unnamed titles sitting that “We’ve got a good number of projects on the go,” and that these projects are “bigger than anything we’ve done,” going on to add that the projects are “kind of different, but still the kind of game people would associate with us.” During an interview with Glixel Mr Howard talked about the future of Bethesda Game Studios by saying “We’re bigger now and we do want to be putting out more stuff. We have two larger projects that are more classically the scale of what we do, but even bigger. We overlap the projects so we’re working on them at the same time, but they’re staggered.” Sounds like some of the pieces of this jigsaw fit, right?

With years of experience in creating fantasy RPG titles, this leak seems to make a lot of sense. Bethesda is no strangers to worlds filled with Dragons and Giants and I can only excitingly imagine how good a Bethesda style Game of Thrones RPG would be. A non-linear story with branching paths that takes you into the heart of a world filled with political intrigue and plenty sword swinging action.

Unfortunately, it didn’t take long for our dreams and hopes to be smashed into pieces as a spokesperson for Target debunked the leak. According to Forbes, who managed to get in touch with Target, the spokesperson said, “This is not a real product – we’re sorry for any confusion.” I don’t know about you, but after I read that my Wednesday morning was ruined.

The evidence surrounding this supposed leak seems to confirm the statement given by Target. Firstly you have to look at what actually happened on Targets website. This wasn’t a placeholder or a genuine listing; it was simply a single phrase. It’s enough to get people excited sure, but not enough evidence to suggest a Target cover up. Secondly, genuine leaks are usually taken down pretty quickly, which in this case it wasn’t. It all points to an unfortunate but genuine mistake by Target.

There is also another listing on the Target website, one that seems much more unlikely than the Bethesda: Game of Thrones posting and that’s Rockstar: Game of Thrones. As much as we’d all love to see a Rockstar Game of Thrones game, I feel this one is wholly unlikely and thus cements the further disappointment in the original leak. Perhaps Target is putting out the feelers for all of us in the hope that one of these developers will give in and actually make the game. The more likely scenario is that one of Target’s website developers is a huge Rockstar, Bethesda, and Game of Thrones fan and is just expressing their fantasies of a perfect game.

We can all still dream and despite this shot to the heart, there are some truths behind this leak, albeit a somewhat bleak and flaky truth, but hope nonetheless. Back when Bethesda was developing Skyrim, it’s been said that Bethesda was approached with the idea of making a game set in HBO’s Game of Thrones world. They turned this offer down and decided to continue their work on Skyrim, which after many hours spent in the game, I’m rather glad about.

The last Game of Thrones style RPG was the Cyanide title, which with all due respect didn’t turn out that well. Although Cyanide’s attempt touched on parts of the show and tried to explore newer idea it didn’t actually impress in a lot of other areas of the game.

Game of Thrones is a huge franchise crying out for a great RPG, just think back to the Lord of the Rings games by EA, they’re classic titles that still stand the test of time. The world of Game of Thrones has huge potential to be explored in a video game medium, be that an MMO or a single player story driven campaign. All it needs is for one developer to take the bull by the horns and lead the way in exploring this worldwide phenomenon.

My guess is it’s only a matter of time before we all get the Game of Thrones video game we’ve been waiting for. With season 7 just wrapping up and the end of the entire series on the horizon, now is the time for a developer to take hold while it’s still fresh in people’s mind. Time is ticking, remember Valar Morghulis - all men must die.

Constantly threatening to write a book, but always with a story to tell. Tom has a typical northern English soul. He may sound as mundane as Jon Snow, but at least he tries to articulate. Lover of video games, comics, geek pop culture and wishing he could play Dungeons & Dragons.
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