Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Game of Thrones Episode One: Iron From Ice Review (PS4)

For some an adventure game or a point and click style game with a cartoonish art style might sound horrible, especially for a Game of Thrones game. How could those elements hope to put forth the doom and gloom style of HBO's Game of Thrones? Let alone tell a story as nail-biting. If your asking any of those questions you haven't played a Telltale game before or specifically their Walking Dead series. Because they without a doubt they nail Game of Thrones.

First thing that should be noted however is that you cannot be dipping your fingers into the GoT universe here. The episode opens at a major plot point in the shows third season and you'll be spoiling that for yourself and wont understand much either. So go catch up on GoT before even thinking about starting this episode.

Iron from Ice starts great with you in control of Garrud Tuttle, squire to Lord Forrester who are celebrating at the Red Wedding and we all know how well that wedding goes. After the events of that horrible evening unfold the HBO shows opening credits sequence and theme kick in and it's just like your playing an episode of the show, which you are, but are also soon to learn those hard decisions characters in the show make are a lot harder when your making them.

If you have played any of Telltales recent series you will be familiar with all the gameplay elements you'll encounter. Conversations tick down until you make a decision, combat or action will have you swinging the analog stick in the right direction and slamming X a bunch or times; or at its most complex a combination of the above. It's basic stuff but these games shine with the story telling and characters not so much ground breaking gameplay.

Unlike the last few episodes of the Walking Dead or The Wolf Among Us you don't get much chance to do any walking around any areas. Your confided to two small places and spend the rest of the episode locked in conversation with people or in some sort of action sequence. Which is fine because this is where it is the most exciting.

You will play as two other characters in Iron from Ice and will switch from one to another throughout much like and episode of the show or as in the books. Ethan Forrester is the most interesting of all three with his struggles to take up duty of ruling the Forrester seat of Ironrath while his father is not there. His siter Mira Forrester is a handmaiden to Margarey Tyrell in Kings Landing which leads to seeing some familiar characters from the show. Although she does play a part in the episode i found her story to be the weakest of the three even with the appearances of the TV counterparts.

Voice acting is top notch across the board from new the new characters to the TV ones that fans know. Ethan's stuff of political and tactical converse is particularly well delivered by all involved.

Iron from Ice is a great prologue episode that does a lot of setting up and pointing characters in certain directions, which would explain this being a six episode series not Telltales normal five.

I played Iron from Ice on PS4 and the thing thing I noticed as someone who had played all of Telltales last gen titles on PS3 was the improvements on the new hardware. No more freezing, hanging, FPS drops or random bugs. Although I still had some animation issues like a character walking through a fireplace and not the door next to it. This is apparently an issue across the board on all platforms though and doesn't do much to hinder your experience of this great first episode.

+ Great Start
+ Performances
+ Gets GoT Feel
- Animation Issues


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