I will start off by saying that I am a fan of the show, but I have not read the books. Therefore, my review will be based off of what I know.
The story line follows the plots of two different characters, unaffiliated with the show. The first one you encounter is from the Knight’s Watch (Mors Westford) and the other is a Red Priest that is formerly of the Sarwyck House (Alester Sarwyck).
Each tale is told as alternate chapters. You start as Mors searching for deserters and fighting Wildlings The the next chapter has you as Alester, returning to your kingdom that has been been run into shambles.
I will say this, the story for both characters was interesting. I felt that it was well written and brought a sense of the tv show with it. There were many quotes taken from the show that were displayed during load scenes and a lot of references to the varying Houses that occupied Westeros (although the Starks never came up early in the game).
You also progressed the story via choices. Depending on how you wanted to play as, you could be brutal or humble. The way the phrasing of the choices were represented gave you a pretty good idea as to how your character would progress. The integration of this was well done and built a connection between me and the character.
This was about the only redeeming quality of the game.
This was absolutely horrendous. To start, there is a leveling system that doesn’t really make any sense. Considering your characters are both introduced as “veterans” of sorts, you begin with building your stats from zero. There was no indication as to how your character would be when you create them (fighting style / abilities) other than the descriptions. Even these didn’t make any sense. As Mors, I chose to make him a fierce 2 handed warrior with the rage element and Alestar was a two-handed weapon master that focused on agility. Neither of these characters displayed any of the choices I selected for them.
The other leveling feature were the skill trees that you could learn. These gave you different abilities during fighting sequences that you could use based on the amount of stamina that you had. This was terribly implemented. But I’ll get to that in a bit.
Finally, you had a qualities chart that you got to select from. Since there was no explanation of what these were or what they did, you essentially just picked some positive qualities (like leadership, poisons, health). But then you had to pick several negative qualities to balance out. After a couple hours, I still had no idea what the purpose was.
The actual fighting mechanism was terrible. When accosted, you would essentially just stand there and take a beating. When your stamina was filled enough, you could hit L1 and pick from the small list of special moves that would do a bit more damage. It was hard to tell because the camera angle from which you fought would hinder what you could actually see during the fight. Although, you were able to assign up to 3 moves at a time, so it would give you a few seconds to fiddle with the camera and see the status bars of your opponents. But, here’s the other thing that gets me. As you have to assign moves and wait for your stamina to rebuild, the enemy does not. It seemed like they would constantly be attacking whereas I would have to literally run around and avoid them to slowly let my meter charge. This was absolutely frustrating! It was like I was playing as an RTS and the computer was playing as an action game.
I should also mention that for every 5 minutes I spent actually playing the game, I spent 45 minutes in various cutscenes and various speaking points.
The were other actionable events (you could take the form of Mors’ dog and sniff out scents) that felt forced and unpolished.
This game seriously looked like it was a PS2 port. It was a choppy, collision-filled, blocky mess. It would lag between entering and leaving a building and between action and cutscenes. In fact, for a game that took over a half hour to install to the PS3, I was befuddled as to why it would take over a minute to load when I walked into a building.
I give this game only 1 heart. If it wasn’t for the storyline, I don’t think there would even be a reason to try this game. With today’s technology, you would think that the product would be at least a little bit better, but that is not the case. And I really wanted to like this game.