Back in 2009, French publishers, Cyanide Studio, announced that they had signed an agreement with author George R. R. Martin to develop both an RTS and RPG based off his best-selling "A Song of Ice and Fire" series. Since that time, Game of Thrones enthusiasts have been left to imagine how the title would turn out.
Now the wait is over, as Cyanide Studio has announced that Focus Home Interactive will publish the first of the two games (the RTS) which will be called: Game of Thrones: Genesis.
Game of Thrones: Genesis is currently PC-only and no official release date has been mentioned. In addition to the announcement, the studio also provided two concept images that showcase scenes from the series - scenes that fans will immediately identify.
From the press release:
"Today, we reveal the first 2 artworks from this game in which you will have to match your political prowess with your strategic and military skills! "A Game of Thrones: Genesis" plunges you into the heart of the battles and intrigues between the Families that shaped the Kingdom of Westeros.
However, victory does not necessarily result from brute force. The innovative game mechanics provide players with numerous paths to success: will you opt for a military, economic or diplomatic approach? Trickery, treachery and deceit are widespread and you will constantly have to watch your back if you want to avoid a bitter defeat!
Peacefully or forcefully annex surrounding territories, besiege enemy castles, send spies to infiltrate behind enemy lines, assassinate trouble-making officers or capture them to ask for a ransom... When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die. There is no middle ground!"
The two screenshots in the press release show the same location from two vantage points.
The first shot is a distance-shot of 'the wall' - the 700 foot-high barrier, manned by the Nightswatch, that protects the Seven Realms - against threats from the unknown north. The second shot is a crows-eye view of 'Castle Black' itself sitting at the foot of the wall. You can even see the rickety winch system in the background against the wall.
Though not known for their real-time strategy work in the past (their most recent game, Blood Bowl, is a football-sim set in the Warhammer universe), Cyanide seems headed in the right direction - even if that direction means they still have a lot of work to do.
If this bears the Game of Thrones name, is should also embrace the themes and mechanics of the franchise. Much of "A Song of Ice and Fire's" popularity can be attributable to Martin's ability to weave a multi-layered plot into his fantasy universe - brimming with unsung heroism, barefaced treachery, political posturing, and zombies. Martin manages to successfully paint all of these components in beautiful, and also straight-forward, written style. Under these types of structural constraints, Cyanide has wisely employed both warfare and politics in their strategy game adaptation.
Are any of you also fans of "A Song of Ice and Fire"? Are you adjusting your gray and white doublet and raising your Stark banners? With this game and the upcoming HBO series in 2011, it's almost too much for me to bear.
Sources: Cyanide Studio