News for November 2010
There is No Middle Ground 5
An overview of A Game of Thrones: The Board Game
A Game of Thrones: The Board Game | Published 11 November 2010

This weekend's Days of Ice and Fire event will give players the chance to take part in the struggle for the Iron Throne by pledging their support to the Great House of their choice. But whether or not you're attending this exciting event, be ready to ensure your the dominance of your House by defending it in A Game of Thrones: The Board Game! For those who have yet to experience the game, this article will give you a general idea of how many of the concepts in the game work. For more in-depth information on A Game of Thrones: The Board Game be sure to check out the its description page.

A Game of Thrones: The Board Game lets 3-5 players march across Westeros and establish control, wage war, and ultimately vie for supremacy. The object of the game is to capture cities and strongholds, and whichever house has the most by the end of turn 10 is declared the victor.

Players use Order tokens to perform a variety of actions during their turn. These Order tokens come in several types: March, Consolidate Power, Support, Defense, and Raid. During the Planning Phase of the game, players choose and place their Order tokens in areas containing their units. These orders will stay hidden from opponents until the Action Phase, when Order tokens are then simultaneously revealed and executed. These tokens are your tools for carrying out your plans and strategies.

Global effects come into play during the game through Westeros cards, which represent the various events that affect the Seven Kingdoms. These cards come in three stages and are revealed each turn, altering the course of the game in some way. Events range from Muster (which allows players to recruit additional troops) to Clash of Kings, which begins a series of influence bidding. But one of the biggest threats that lie within these decks is the Wildling attack.

While the opposing players will serve as your main obstacle in the game, there is always the threat of the Wildlings breaching the Wall in the north. Players will have to decide if they want to sacrifice some of their own resources to help the Night’s Watch fend off the savages for the greater good of the realm, or instead focus their efforts on their own endeavors. Failure to repel the Wildling attacks will result in detrimental effects for all players, so it might be best to set aside your differences for the moment and fight the common foe. Then again...if you have superior forces, perhaps a Wildling attack is just what the crows ordered.

Players will need armies to carry out their orders. Order tokens can only be played in areas that contain your units, so more armies means more options each turn. However, players are limited to how many armies they can field, and that is determined by supply. Certain areas on the map provide supplies (represented by a barrel icon), and players that control those areas will eventually be able to add those to his supply total. The more supplies you have, the more armies you can field. An army is defined as 2 or more figures in a single area. These can be any combination of footmen and knights. Ships work similarly, but are also considered to be fleets. Fortunately, a single footmen in an area will not break supply, but they will be significantly weaker if attacked. Speaking of battles...

Military conquest is a direct path to victory in A Game of Thrones: The Board Game. Battles are initiated by March Orders and resolved by calculating combat strength. There are several factors that go into determining combat strength, including Support orders from adjacent areas and the type of March order used to initiate the combat. Additionally, players choose which House Card will be played for the battle. These cards are chosen secretly and revealed simultaneously. House Cards represent notable figures that contribute their support to the fight, and their assistance can make or break the fight.

The struggle for the Iron Throne is not only fought on the battlefields. Intrigue and political power both play important roles in A Game of Thrones: The Board Game. This is represented by the Areas of Influence track. These tracks consist of three different areas of influence: the Iron Throne, Fiefdoms, and the King’s Court. Each of these areas govern a different aspect of the game and grant bonuses to players who are higher on the track. The Iron Throne track determines turn order and provides the ability to break ties in bidding, while the Fiefdoms track determines who has the Vylarian steel blade, which can add a tie-breaking +1 in battles. Finally, the King’s Court gives players access to more powerful Order tokens while also giving the player highest on that track the messenger raven, which can be used to change an Order token after they have been revealed.

For more information on A Game of Thrones: The Board Game head over to its detailed website. Also, don’t miss your chance to take part in the struggle for the Iron Throne at the Days of Ice and Fire event this weekend. See you there!

Based on the best-selling novel series A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin, A Game of Thrones: The Board Game lets 3-5 players take control of the great houses of Westeros in an epic struggle to claim the Iron Throne.

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Comments (5)

Published: 11/12/2010 4:06:29 AM

 Does the second printing have this black border? It looks pretty cool.

Published: 11/11/2010 11:50:26 PM

Excellent game when played with players of equal skills and with expansions. A lot of flexibility with the expansions as well. Just sad that, after playing approx 50-60 games with my buddies (this is one of my top 5 games), we are just doing king making since we are kinda, too good to simply beat another player on a 1 vs 1 basis. But it is always fun to "Cleganize" 3 knights in 1 attack :D.

Published: 11/11/2010 9:20:45 PM

 A solid game, but you need five good war gamers to make it shine. Played it a few times with my wife and 11-year old daughter. I liked it and saw its potential. Unfortunately they just didn't get into the groove. IMO the expansions add a lot to the game play.

Published: 11/11/2010 7:28:29 PM

 What timing, we just announced this is our first tournament game of 2011

Published: 11/11/2010 6:45:12 PM

An oldie but a goodie.  Gave my copy away to someone who loves it (and plays it) more than me.

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