We can’t imagine it’s easy being George R.R. Martin. It’s bad enough that the complicated backlash surrounding the the final season of Game Of Thrones has been inevitably dripping back on to the book series that inspired it over the last few months; there’s also the fact that few figures in American pop culture (outside of maybe Ruth Bader Ginsberg) have had their deaths so publicly worried about or speculated on. No wonder Martin seeks distractions from the mind-numbing chore of writing books, whether it’s The Big Bang Theory or his little hats, or working on the Game Of Thrones prequels, or simply giving in, as many of us do, to the siren call of video games. Making video games, in this case.
There have been rumors for months now that Martin was teaming up with From Software, the Japanese studio behind the massively selling Dark Souls series of games, for a new collaborative project. It’s not an unnatural fit; Martin and the studio’s head, Hidetaka Miyazaki, have a shared interest in the bloody, unglamorous side of traditional fantasy settings, subverting classic Tolkien-esque narratives with a more cynical take on human nature. Plus, it would fit with Martin’s current M.O., which is all about branching out, diversifying his portfolio, and above all else, not finishing the fucking Winds Of Winter.
Hence why it’s not surprising to see a leak—courtesy of our friends over at Kotaku—coming out of upcoming video game conference E3, apparently confirming that Martin will be working with From on a new game, Elden Ring. So far, the only other info we have on the game is a complicated diagram that look like the fancy hood ornament design on hell’s first car, and the firm knowledge that a million people just Googled “What the heck does ‘elden’ mean?” We’ll presumably know more about the project—and all the ways Martin intends to put off his other obligations by working on it—once E3 proper actually arrives.