Game of Thrones "The Ice Dragon" review for Xbox One, PS4, PC

Platform: Xbox One
Also On: PS4, PC, Xbox 360, PS3, iOS
Publisher: Telltale Games
Developer: Telltale Games
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No

In true Game of Thrones fashion, the final chapter in Telltale’s Game of Thrones series, The Ice Dragon, doesn’t exactly end on a high note. That’s not going to be too surprising for franchise fans of either the books or TV show that this series is based on, as tragedy and murder aren’t exactly strange concepts in both. But still, this sixth episode really delivers one heckuva gut punch at the end, certainly evoking some of the same feelings I got from the first season of Telltale’s The Walking Dead.

Gared bearThe conflict between the Whitehills and the Forrester clan comes to a head here, with both factions continuing to clash over the Ironwood forests, now being pitted against each other at the command of Ramsay Snow/Bolton. There’s a pretty tense dinner scene, a whole lot of plotting on both sides, and while this story certainly concludes, there are many angles left open for an inevitable second season. That said, the cast gets thinned out quite a bit in The Ice Dragon, so how and when things would pick up again I’m not quite sure.

Other storylines come to a close, with similarly startling conclusions. Mira’s attempts to help her family from the confines of King’s Landing finishes up, with a few twists and turns that might not be particularly surprising, but certainly give that story thread closure. On the opposite end of the world. Gared Tuttle’s search for the North Grove also concludes, where we meet a few new characters with interesting revelations and abilities. If you were hoping for a bit more of the mystical side of Game of Thrones, Gared’s part of the story will certainly deliver.

MiraAs the first season of Telltale’s Game of Thrones concludes, I leave this final chapter feeling pretty impressed. I played through all of this first season on Xbox One, which had some unfortunate technical issues. This final chapter is no different, with some stuttering and loading issues early on that seemingly ironed themselves out as I progressed through the two hours or so it took to complete. These aren’t necessarily game breaking issues, but I absolutely expect the game to run a bit better than this on modern hardware. Still, setting those technical issues aside and looking at the game as a whole across six chapters, I think Telltale did a real solid job of capturing the look, feel, and general theme of the TV show.

As always, I’d love to see Telltale mix it up a bit more mechanically, introducing more player interaction other than limited QTE’s and conversation decisions, but compared to Telltale’s other offerings, I think Game of Thrones is right up there with the best. I look forward to seeing the series continue, especially after this ending, and hope we hear some news on that front sooner rather than later.

Grade: A-

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