The Game of Thrones franchise has already seen massive success through books and now the hit TV series. People can’t get enough of George R. R. Martin’s epic world of fantasy. For the past seven years Cyanide Studio has been working on this RPG game based on it. They worked with the author to craft a story true to the universe without overlapping the books, rather than merely attempting to adapt the novels directly into a game.
This means that you can freely enjoy the game and have some flexibility without worrying too much about spoilers or otherwise inhibiting your enjoyment of the TV show or books. It lets you explore Westeros from a new perspective and get invested with a new set of characters running parallel to A Song of Ice and Fire.
The writing is really the selling feature of this game. The story is well crafted, and paced with all the surprises and intrigue we’ve come to expect from this universe. That explains why he game seems to start out so slowly. Most games, even most RPGs will dumps you into the action relatively quickly. With A Game of Thrones you spend a lot of time with dialog before even drawing a weapon. Most of the game-play is combat oriented, but for the most part, that just a means to an end, leading the character from plot point to plot point.
Unfortunately, other than the great storytelling, the game doesn’t have all too much to offer. Its not a bad game, it just feels rather dated overall. The presentation simply doesn’t do it justice. They spent seven years on development and it looks like a game from seven years ago. It seems like they spend that first year developing the game engine, then six years filling it with a great, and interesting story.
The game is an elaborate RPG, allowing players to take full control of how their protagonist grows and develops. Its full of stats and a robust skill tree for setting things up to your liking, and in that respect its a pretty good game, since hardcore RPG fans will love that aspect. It certainly hasn’t been dumbed down in the name of accessibility.
Overall I wouldn’t call this a bad game. Its far from it. It has a lot of problems which just make it feel somewhat dated but if you’re looking for the richness of a traditional role playing game or interested in experiencing great storytelling, there is certainly a lot here to enjoy. My only warning is that the game isn’t exactly the eye-candy you may be hoping for. Its a shame that the presentation issues do the game such a disservice since there is so much potential here. If you can overlook the game looking rough around the edges, the quality story is a pretty good reward.