A Game Of Thrones: Genesis by Focus Home Interactive review

RTS strategy game based on George R R Martin's hit novels
Photo of A Game Of Thrones: Genesis by Focus Home Interactive
£29.99

Think A Game Of Thrones, and the chances are few people’s minds will turn to this PC-based real-time strategy game. Some, doubtless, will instantly think of George R R Martin’s staggeringly rich series of novels, charting war and conflict, and a great deal more besides. Even more, we suspect, will be thinking of the excellent, and phenomenally rude, television series.

But it’s a title that attempts to skew the RTS formula. Rather than the usual round-robin of gathering resources, building up forces, and then going off to war, A Game Of Thrones: Genesis has a new idea up its sleeve. It attempts to get you to engage in more underhand tactics, as you send envoys and spies out to try and gain you an advantage. Naturally, the enemy is doing the same, and it does open up a few different ways by which you can prevail. How can winning by sneakiness alone not appeal?

Game of Thrones: Genesis

But crikey, it’s dull. The good ideas that the game has are soon buried under too much scripting, too little happening, and pacing that’s learned little from the past decade or two of RTS development.

What’s just as disappointing is that it’s a tepid dip of the toes into the world that George R R Martin has created. The names are there, certainly, and the developers have had a browse of the books for inspiration. But you don’t get any sense that they’ve captured what makes them quite so special. Instead, they’ve offered a real-time strategy title that flatters to deceive, where only the more interesting, and pacier, multiplayer mode offers much salvation for your money.

Somewhere, at the heart of A Game Of Thrones: Genesis, there are the germs of a far better game. But while the thinking is interesting, the end result, sadly, isn’t. Given the strength of the licence, that’s a particular disappointment.

Game of Thrones: Genesis

Company: Focus Home Interactive

Website: http://www.focus-home.com/

Positives
  • A potentially interesting new twist on the RTS genre.
Negative
  • Too many obstacles in the way of being fun to play.

Verdict

What make the books and television show so compelling is sadly lacking in an occasionally ambitious, but ultimately dull, strategy game.