Essay on Adapting Game of Thrones to a Boardgame

Essay on Adapting Game of Thrones to a Boardgame

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What makes a successful adaptation from one media to another? In this case the subject will be the Game of Thrones. We will take in the basic elements of the story and see how these apply for the new medium. These five elements are character, plot, theme, settings and conflict. The medium I have chosen is to convert it to a game specifically I will look at Game of Thrones the Boardgame (now refered to as GOT) as played with three players and the card game based on the HBO series (HBO). With both these properties we will look and see if and how the five elements are used and playability of the game.
In GOT you take on the role as leader of one of three houses Baratheon, Stark and Lannister. You start with the territories associated with those houses and six character cards these cards are used with in conflict with other houses. Each character card provides certain bonuses in conflict; some of these bonuses are more martial other bonuses are more to do with intrigue. Each character can only be used once until all are used. The only problem with this system is that certain important characters get left out, as they are not aligned to houses. In HBO most of the characters you know from this TV show are there. Each card has its own flavor text, and unique ability that corresponds with the character on the show. In this case both games recognize the importance of the characters to the story so we will call it a draw.
With plot you want your basic elements. The randomness of a card game does not allow for any kind of defined plot, HBO obviously falters here. While in GOT there is a definite beginning, middle and end, as the game only lasts for ten turns. You begin your own territory and expand from there; this corresponds with you...


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...h of the game. All sides are very balanced and lend themselves to different play styles, making the game very replayable. This game has a somewhat sharp learning curve and can be unforgiving to new players, but like a good book is incredibly rewarding to finish.
To conclude while HBO uses the related characters and the setting of the Game of Thrones it falls short when you consider the plot, themes into a lesser extent the conflict of the story. HBO does make a decent Head-to-head card game and the fact that the game is only a two-player game means it can be played at ease. GOT is an epic game, incorporating all aspects of the story and providing a rewarding game experience. GOT feels like the books, but like the books it is not quick. In the end and this is biased because I play games I would have to say that GOT is a much better adaptation of the Game of Thrones.

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