The DeanBeat: Please build me this metaverse on the Dark Tower series

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When it comes to the metaverse, we see a lot of fog and hype there. Everyone seems to think they want it, but they’re not sure what it is or if it’s something that’s already been done or something that’s yet to come. Here are some of my own thoughts on what a metaverse should be.

What I would like to encourage is a little imagination. If you remember the words of Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick, he said in interviews and a speech he gave that the metaverse was overdone and that a lot of things had already been done. He called Second Life and its inspiration for virtual worlds a dismal failure, and praised GTA Online for doing everything the metaverse should be through gaming. It’s social, people play together, they play their games.

But I think Zelnick fell into the trap of thinking we’ve been there before and did it. Why try again? It’s good to remember that so many massively multiplayer online (MMO) games predate GTA Online and World of Warcraft, like Eve Online. They built on each other.

In my opinion, the metaverse should be real-time. It has to be fast and you have to be able to jump between worlds instantly, without painful delays that take you out of the immersion you can find yourself in anywhere.

My idea of ​​an entertaining metaverse encompasses the work of a young writer who studied long ago as an English major and explored rich works full of literary references, such as The Wasteland and Paradise Themes by TS Eliot and Hell and the End of Civilization.

He came up with the idea of ​​building a set of worlds and characters and stories that would all be connected to each other. Each individual creation had its own meta-story. It was a bit like the idea of ​​binding Robin and Rand Miller’s original Myst books.

He was inspired by The Lord of the Rings, Arthurian legends and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. And he read the poem Childe Roland on the camera of the Dark Tower, by Robert Browning. The series was about his interpretation of what happened when a knight approached the Dark Tower.

I’m talking about Stephen King and his magnum opus, The Dark Tower series. King was often criticized for his horror works, starting with Carrie, and he was considered a literary schlockmeister who produced the worst pulp fiction.

But he started with this idea and apparently had it buried for decades. But he built worlds and he created backdoors to those worlds to a bigger meta-story. He came up with the idea of ​​building a set of worlds and characters and stories that would all be connected to each other. Along with the ideas of parallel worlds and time travel, he made sure that these characters — like The Stand villain Randall Flagg — could appear over and over in all of his books over decades of writing. He wove such works as The Wastelands and The Seven Samurai into the tapestry of The Dark Tower, which eventually grew into eight novels and over 4,250 pages.

I realize they did a movie review on the first story. And Amazon canceled a TV series based on that. But I’m one of those hardcore fans.

By tying together dozens of novels and other creative works and telling one very big story, King had the final say over people who felt his work never deserved the epic label. He created his own magnum opus. In my mind he built a metaverse. You could take all that and turn it into a digital metaverse of virtual, interconnected worlds. You can use these links to discover common threads between these stories. It wasn’t just any story. It was a whole collection of stories, all under one roof. It was like a franchise of franchises.

Or better yet, you could let readers and players take these worlds and make them their own. To me, it’s the kind of imagination worthy of the term metavers. I wish someone would build it.

What am I going to do in this metaverse? I don’t know. Hell, I could make up my own Stephen King-esque stories about The Dark Tower or maybe just connect with other fans. It would be a world built on worlds, and something I could sink my teeth into as a fan.

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