By Craig Pearson on March 9th, 2012 at 4:00 pm.
All it takes is a TV show for everything and everyone to want a manly hug from you. Bigpoint’s free-to-play MMO is the third game I’m aware of that’s based on George RR Martin’s easily spoiled fantasy doorstops, A Song of Ice and Fire, but it’s the one that’s interesting me the most. It plonks you right in the middle of Westeros during the first book’s timeframe at a very specific moment, and gives you everywhere from the North to the South to explore. The Lannisters, Baratheons and Starks are all scrabbling to grasp flicking tail of power (can you guess why?), and you can either take a side and get involved in the political PvP backstabbery, or wander the land headbutting the environment in PvE. Actual spoilers below.
So the three main factions, that you can’t join but you can support with your own guild, are trying to manoeuvre their choice of Hand into power at King’s Landing. They’re attempting to give a hand, as it were. Aha! I presume it’s just after the fall of the Robert Baratheon, the head of House Baratheon, King of the Seven Kingdoms, aka Mark Addy. However it goes, you have choices from the get go. To join a guild is to become part of the struggle for the power of Westeros. That includes supporting a major player before swapping allegiances to another, or bribing other guilds to boost your push for the iron throne. All part of the fiction’s friction.
Underlying all this is the meaty hack and slashery that typifies Westeros, with PvP battles taking place dynamically, in the world and in arenas, and medieval objectives like defending wagons leading up to vast assaults on forts for the end-game. I’m hoping for a sellsword option, because I like the word and quite fancied that life. I’d really the option to take the Black.
How all this will be made F2P is what’s worrying me: I can picture being cleaved in twain by a Lannister-supporting Valyrian Steel sworded paid up enemy, or maybe you can buy classes like The Mountain, and wander the lands, committing unfathomable acts? I would very much suggest that you don’t go that route, BigPoint, if only for the sake of the children.