If you're like me, or many other people around the United States, you have fully bought into the hype of HBO's Westworld and you're spending your Sunday evenings enjoying the new show, and your Mondays dissecting every tiny detail from the previous night. The universe contained within Westworld is an incredibly intriguing one, and the wondrous setting is a huge part of why we're so dedicated to the program. Like so many other viewers, I can hardly wait to see more of this world.
Now, the universe presented in Westworld is a fairly expansive one. Through the first three episodes, the showrunners have made it very clear that there are all sorts of locations that we have yet to discover (and that we might never go to), and when considering the original film, there might even be other themed worlds that guests (and viewers) could visit in future seasons. With that in mind, it's quite clear that there's far more to explore in this universe than simply what we have been seeing in the show.
Given how much of a gamble HBO made on Westworld (approximately $100 million was spent on the production of Season 1), and the widely positive reception from critics and fans alike, it seems safe to assume that we'll be getting a whole lot more of Westworld in the near future. Knowing how successful the show has been thus far, I would like to propose that fans be given the opportunity to further explore the theme park via entirely different mediums. While visiting the park in person is impossible (you can visit Disneyland if you wanna visit animatronic characters in a theme park), there's still one medium in particular that would seem to be the perfect way for fans to dive deeper into this universe: a video game.
Westworld is already essentially a video game. The world is populated by artificial intelligence and these various AI characters are constantly moving about in a way that establishes various sorts of "quests" for the guests to participate in. Guests might look to hunt down a great outlaw, as a pair of guests sought to do in Episode 1, or they might get roped into finding a buried treasure with an old man, as William nearly does in Episode 2.
The way that the events and characters of the theme park are crafted is intimately similar to the build of an open-world adventure game such as The Witcher or Fallout. The bottom line is that Westworld lends itself perfectly to a video game setting. It's an open world that has tons of narratives you can latch on to, as well as plenty of customization options for how you want to establish yourself. However, I think there might actually be a better way to create a Westworld video game.
Imagine a scenario where a guest enters the theme park and begins in the town of Sweetwater. They wander around a bit and explore what's going on in town before they get drawn into one of the various quest options. They leave town to go on their adventure, just like the couple did in Episode 1, and when the AI begin to malfunction and run amok, this time, the guests are treated to a much more chaotic challenge. A narrative where the player character(s) are trying to survive the haywire Westworld makes an optimal opportunity for a streamlined story. Enter Telltale Games.
If you haven't played any of the Telltale Games adventures, they're stories that come in a uniquely animated fashion and that follow a storyline through episodic installments. Previous entries into their library include stories about The Walking Dead, Batman, and Game of Thrones, with almost all of their recent works being counted as resounding successes.
However, the opportunity to present a storyline that runs parallel to events of this season in a different part of the Westworld park sounds like something that could be very enjoyable. Seeing the world through the eyes of uninformed guests instead of through hosts and programmers, and the man in black could provide a completely different take on the realities of what a theme park like this could be like.
What are your thoughts on the potential for expanding Westworld to other mediums? Would you be up playing a Westworld themed Telltale game? Maybe you'd prefer an open-world video game, or a different medium altogether like a comic book? Let us know what you think in the comments!