Westworld: Shogun World & The Other Parks' Dark Secrets

Warning: SPOILERS for Westworld!


Westworld isn't the only park, and Shogun World and The Raj may be darker than the wild west simulation. In Westworld's universe, the ultra-wealthy guests are invited to "live without limits". The promise for those with the means to vacation in Delos Destinations' exclusive island resort is the freedom to do whatever they wish. But there's always been an underlying catch that Westworld is designed to cater to: the park exists to indulge a person's absolute worst impulses.

In the early episodes, Westworld's allure was almost romantic: step into a perfect recreation of the 19th century American West and experience every aspect of being a cowboy. Adventure, violence, sex, and the boundless frontier awaited. But if a guest wanted to go deeper, the park was very equipped to meet those needs. There were further levels of danger, violence, sex, and brutality. Before they broke free of their programmed loops, the Hosts existed to be abused and even murdered in any way a human desired.

Related: Westworld: Dolores' Darkest Move Yet Explained

It was always obvious, as Logan Delos once taught his brother-in-law William, the future Man in Black, that Westworld was more "fun" if you wanted to be depraved. The game is limited by playing cowboy to act like a hero. "Living without limits" and "finding your true self" really meant indulging your basest instincts in all the ways society would find despicable and criminal. This unleashing of their raw ids was the true allure of Westworld for the 1% who could afford the $40,000 a day price tag.

In Season 2's two new parks, which lack the supposed moral choice of playing as a black hat or white hat, the games get even nastier:

Shogun World And The Raj

Westworld - The Raj website

Shogun World is really Westworld Asia - but worse. It's the same park with a feudal Japan skin placed over the Old West theme. What's shocking is how lazy Westworld's creative was in designing Shogun World: it features many of the same basic characters and storylines but with samurai and geisha in place of the cowboys and prostitutes. The key difference between the two parks is Shogun World is for guests who think Westworld is too tame. Fans have met no Asian creators behind Westworld to lend cultural authenticity; two white British men, the late Robert Ford and Lee Sizemore, are Westworld's writers. Therefore, Shogun World is a Caucasian's vision of Edo Japan that ups the ante for "living without limits" - but with a Far Eastern flavor.

With Brits Ford and Sizemore writing the stories, it's not surprising then that the British colonization of South Asia is the draw for the third park fans have seen, The Raj. The lone glimpse of the Raj so far has European visitors catered to by Indian servants. They get to ride elephants and indulge in Bengal tiger hunts. It's arguable that shooting animals for sport is morally acceptable if they're merely robot animals; it's not a difficult leap to make that vacationers to the Raj are free to turn their elephant guns on the Hosts if they wish. William's daughter Emily's suspicion of Nicholas's sexual advances and her need to determine he's a human indicates that sex with the Hosts is even easier to have in the Raj than in Westworld.

Related: Westworld Timeline Explained: How It All Connects

Westworld's Real Goal

Westworld - Maze symbol

Season 2 is slowly unraveling the parks' unsettling real purpose: every wealthy visitor is an unwitting victim of the Delos Corporation. Their DNA is being stolen and compiled, as are their preferences, likes and dislikes, in a manner similar to the info gathering of Facebook. Part of this is for commerce and selling them other goods and services. However, as with everything in Westworld, there's a deeper level.

It seems Delos' ultimate goal is to create perfect Host-human hybrids. If the mega-rich are willing to pay to live without sin in a Delos park, what then would they be willing to pay to live forever? Imagine a new Host body 3D printed and implanted with a person's brain so that their life can continue uninterrupted. Delos' endgame is an endless loop of eternal life, the very thing the Hosts of Westworld are fighting to be able to control and determine for themselves.

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