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Games For Thrones

Look at that coast, waiting for pirates to raid.

First, I will admit to being one of those. The people who finally read George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series post-HBO series. My Twitter feed was full of nothing but talk of it, I recalled being interested by the talk of the RTS game that was being made, and finally caved. Having now caught up on the books and on the show that was made, looking at the game as it stands now seems a wholly different prospect than when I previously looked at it.

The developer, Cyanide, doesn't have horribly much on which we can base our expectations (which may well be for the best?). The events of this particular game are also to take place before the book A Game of Thrones, which means the usual houses will be present, but not necessarily in the form to which we've become accustomed. For those book worms who devour the series, the following houses are represented:

  • Targaryen
  • Stark
  • Tully
  • Arryn
  • Tyrell
  • Baratheon
  • Martell
  • Lannister

Perhaps what I am interested in is how this plays as an RTS. In my mind, the various events of the books, and how Martin tells them, are a game of chess, which each move provoking other moves. Instead, this will theoretically put you in the shoes of one of the heads of the houses, but controlling the various people and armies, of whom we seem to get the barest of senses in the books themselves (beyond being there for slaughter and theoretically being fought for or dismissed). As even the finest wrought plans can be disrupted if you stall too long, it may well be that this style of play will be for the best.

Further plans for those eight houses beyond just campaigns? Eight-player multiplayer will apparently be available, though the campaigns will likely be the focus of highlighting details of historical events Martin has only mentioned in passing through the books. Given the possibility of failure, it's intriguing to imagine alternate histories for the books that have released.

As to more about gameplay? Not much more as yet, though I cannot see this being an RTS particularly suited to being able to click as fast as possible, though I could always be mistaken. However, this little bit that has been teased seems to support that this will be a somewhat different RTS game: "It is also very possible, by cleverly using all the low blows the game allows you to use, to earn victory without ever entering an open war or recruiting any army. A real first in a real-time strategy game!"

The goal is to win the Iron Throne, but whether you decide to do that through diplomacy, an army, economic strength, or underhanded methods will be up to you. Considering how even some major players in the series continue on without a large military might behind them, this does seem to make sense in that regard.

Perhaps one last intriguing detail? Apparently Game of Thrones: Genesis will be releasing this month, on the 29th. So, given that you have a few more weeks, I suppose the question I would have is what elements are essential to players and fans in such a game?

And girls who like girls who like rumble packs!

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