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A Real Game of Thrones

If you watch the popular HBO show, Game of Thrones, then you’re familiar with the many houses of Westeros, and each one’s power-struggle for the ultimate right to the Iron Throne. While the TV series has garnered a large fan-base, some (maybe a small few?) don’t know that it is based on the fantasy novels written by George R. R. Martin, titled of course, A Song of Ice and Fire.

Now, YOU can assume the “power” of your favorite House and/or faction in the tabletop game of the same name, published last year by CMON.

What is A Song of Ice and Fire?

A Song of Ice and Fire is a 32mm miniatures-based game. You use movement trays to maneuver your armies, and generally play on a 4×4 field or game mat.

The game incorporates familiar characters — such as The Mountain, Cersei Lannister, and Robb Stark — and Houses and factions — currently Lannister, Stark, Bolton, Night’s Watch and Free Folk — from the books. Each House and faction assumes a different play style, which affects your army’s advantages and abilities on the battlefield. (Note: You can expect expansions in the near future that will feature additional characters, houses, and factions.)

Among the unique features that set this game apart from others are:

  • House-based tactics cards and commander-based cards. These increase or replenish your army’s abilities and ranks, or sabotage your opponent.
  • A tactics board. This is where your Non-Combat Unit can gain control of different abilities to either benefit your unit or hinder the other army.
  • The miniatures. In our opinion, they are finely-sculpted, fairly-priced, AND there’s no assembly required! Keep them as is (each faction is color-coded), or paint them up to make them stand out.
  • What do you need to start?

    The core box is the easiest way to start playing because it comes with two armies (Lannisters and Starks) and all essential game pieces — perfect for you and a friend to get gaming right out of the box. There are also two other standalone box sets for The Night’s Watch and Free Folk.

    If you’d like to tailor your army a bit more, you can purchase individual unit boxes, such as Tully Sworn Shields and Bolton Flayed Men. The minis included in these units diversify your army’s strengths and play style.

    How does general gameplay work?

    First, you build your army on a points system — 30, 40 or 50 points. Use the points to “buy” your Non-Combat Units (at least one, but likely two). Other units vary in point cost, with elite troops costing more. Add hero characters to each unit (enter the likes of Jamie Lannister, Ramsay Bolton, or even Jon Snow) to gain extra abilities.

    Gameplay is pretty straight-forward. It uses a turn-based system that is similar to other games. The difference, however, is the alternating sequence. That is, one player takes an action, then the other player takes one, until all available actions have been used. Unlike other miniature wargames, it is not a “move and attack with all your units all at once” kind of game.

    On your turn, you either move a unit, attack, charge into combat, or use a Non-Combat Unit.

    Gamer Tip: Successful gameplay hinges on being aware of and using ALL elements of the game. In other words, don’t get stuck with tunnel vision and only focus on attacking with units. Use everything available to you — the tactics cards, tactics board, and your units! You must make them work together to help you gain advantages and claim victory.

    Finally, the mission that you and your opponent agree to play dictates the winning conditions for the game.

    Who would like this game?

    If you are a fan of old fantasy-style miniatures games that incorporate distinctive game mechanics, or are simply just a fan of the books and/or TV show, you will enjoy playing this game.

    A Song of Ice and Fire is easy-to-learn. While it takes a little practice to master the tactical learning curve (understanding and implementing strategic combinations to get the upper hand), that is the aspect of the game that drives its appeal!

    Pledge your House allegiance!

    There are no other games on the market quite similar to A Song of Ice and Fire. If you’re interested in throwing your sword in the ring to compete for the Iron Throne, join us every Friday night starting at 6pm for open play. Or, if you’d like a hands-on tutorial, contact us to schedule a demo and learn how to take the Throne!