It should be noted that you don’t need to follow the television series or have read the books to follow the Game of Thrones RPG. Obviously it helps, but those unfamiliar with the series won't feel out of place, unlike the constant bugs and muddy textures that plague the majority of the game. Game of Thrones had a seven year development cycle, but you really, really wouldn't assume that from state of it, it just feels very rushed in order to coincide with the success of the recent TV series.
Character models look awful and animations can range from stiff to ridiculous, whilst in most parts models look extremely similar. In some scenes, you'll witness three of four clones of the exact same model doing something exactly the same. If they were part of a huge background crowd then you could forgive the design, but when it's a small cut scene, with the clones front and centre, it's really lazy.
These aren't signs of a seven year development cycle.
Combat on the other hand, is surprisingly robust, with a vast amount of options to build your character up, but you'll ultimately learn to rely on seemingly random tactics to win. As you start a battle, you can slow down the action, with enemies still slowly moving keeping the intensity of the moment alive and allow you to strategically plan your attack. By switching between characters and setting them to use a specific set of attacks, you can plan your attack through the players, before exiting the slow-down mode whilst you wait for your energy to recharge.
Whilst Game of Thrones lacks the polish and finesse of its book and TV series, the juicy portions and twists are actually genuinely good. It's a shame that the other 97% of the game is a buggy, ugly, and utterly poorly delivered mess.
Article first published as PlayStation 3 Review: Game of Thrones RPG on Blogcritics By Callum Povey