Game of Thrones is a real time RPG set before the events of the show but will eventually go up to Season 1 of the show. It has you controlling two protagonists, one a Ranger of The Wall called Mors Westford and the other a self exiled heir to a powerful lord of the south called Alester Sarwyck. Each have their own inventory, money and skills which you will have to constantly manage. The game is mostly linear but has a few side quests here and there but will expire once that chapter is over. It does feature a few characters from the show that play vital roles like Queen Cersei and Varrus along with some well known locations like Kings Landing and Castle Black. Neither area are impressive though and Kings Landing feels like a tiny town instead of the capital of Westeros. If you are unfamiliar with Game of Thrones the game does feature a lot of codex entries to help fill you in.
Let me start off with talking about gameplay. It is pretty simple, you auto-attack an enemy when spotting them but pressing the attack button is much more effective as it cause more damage and its a lot more likely to connect the blow. Then you can select an ability and a menu opens up causing the action to go into slow motion to give you more time to select them. Which sounds alright but the fact that you usually fight by yourself against multiple enemies will cause you to quickly get bored since you have a limited set of moves and will be relying heavily on the same few moves with little chance to vary it up. The targeting system is very clunky and will flat out refuse to work at times causing you to take unnecessary damage as you are unable to target the archers that are quickly draining your health and to further annoy you enemies strikes can hit you even if you are a couple feet away from them and they strike air. I feel combat would be a lot more enjoyable if you had a party like most games of this genre but as it stands it feels very tedious.
Once you reach level 7 you can choose another fighting style which has it's own set of moves which is very welcome so you can experiment with a few more ablities. The game also features light stealth sections in where you take control of Mor's dog and enter a first person mode to pick up on peoples scents and hunt them down. You can take out enemies by sneaking up behind them and pouncing on them to rip out their throats which is fun at first but for some reason they found it necessary to make you mash a button when doing that which gets annoying fast. Alester on the other hand has an ability to spot hidden items but the animation of it takes quite awhile to finish which makes it annoying to use too. At one time you are required to go on a scavenger hunt searching for seven keys around Alester's castle which just felt like lazy padding but luckily after that you can solve the games only puzzles which were pretty enjoyable.
Graphics are very outdated and the major areas you explore are tiny and unimpressive. On top of that the amount of times they reuse the same models is absurd. Every piece of armor looks different and it is pretty fun mixing and matching the armor sets to your liking. Enemies all look very similar minus the sigils of their lords on the armor and shields which isn't really a problem since the fantasy stuff is near non existent in this game. The user interface for the inventory is pretty bad since it is difficult to compare equipment and weapons, armor,potions, etc are separated into different tabs which make it even more of a hassle. Also when selling at vendors the items you have equipped are in random positions with only a tiny icon that has your face on it which may cause you to accidentally sell your best equipment. Another issue I would like to address is that the mini-map is very confusing to understand and you have to be practically on top of an item or location so that you know where it is, though there is a map in the start menu which is much more useful.
Sound is a mixed bag. The music features the main theme to GoT and some other fitting music which I find enjoyable but loops a bit too often. Sound effects are just average, they do the job. Now this is the worst flaw of the game, the voice acting. Holy cow, with the amount of dialogue in this game you'd think they would atleast try to make it decent but nope. The only characters with decent voices are the ones from the show, the rest are terrible. They all sound half asleep and sound so monotone that it really damages the story in this game. It makes the world and adventure seem so boring hearing how everyone talks like the world's most underpaid documentary narrator. None are capable of of showing emotion, they yell “No!” the same way I would from arguing with Siri on my phone while high on meds from a blow to the head.
Story starts off with the most evil looking protagonist called Mor's as he does a few missions for the Night Watch and eventually switches to Alester who has returned to Westeros for his fathers funeral. Both are really interesting characters (with bad voice acting) and the events that happen to the game will eventually effect both of them. The story in this is surprisingly important and is capable of changing all of Westeros to keep it vague and spoiler free. It is pretty cool playing as a character with a looked down upon religion and wish they would have done more with it other than a few characters hating your guts because of your beliefs. They do an excellent job at getting you to despise the villain in this game and became my main motivation for wanting to beat the game considering the main story was rather uninteresting until later on. About 3/4th into the campaign the story suddenly becomes very good and will have you hooked until the awesome end. It was a rather surprising and welcome change, it's like if the writer's boss found out he spends most of his workdays playing Minecraft or something and replaced his computer with a typewriter.
This is one game I spent a lot of time wondering if I should recommend or not. It isn't broken and runs fine enough it's just so boring until much later on. It doesn't do anything well other than build up the main characters but even that is negatively effected by awful voice acting. And it is rather tame until the 3/4th mark which is strange considering how gritty and violent the GoT universe is. I'd have to say that if you are a huge Game of Thrones fan wanting to explore parts of Westeros and wanting to see a story not involving the Starks and Lannisters then feel free to give this one a shot.