New Game Review

Review – Reigns: Game of Thrones (PC)

Killing more people in a day than in George R. R. Martin's entire career

I thought I’d seen everything Devolver could throw at me this year. Minimalistic adventures inspired by Groundhog Day, a roguelike Zelda clone, a better Ninja Gaiden than Ninja Gaiden, and even a 16-bit recreation of every single 80’s action movie ever made. I never thought I’d see a licensed product coming from the punk rockers of indie gaming, let alone a game based off something as big as Game of Thrones. But here we are with one of weirdest games I’ve played this year: a mixture between a puzzler, a kingdom simulator, Game of Thrones and Tinder. That’s Reigns: Game of Thrones in a  nutshell.

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Burn.

Reigns: Game of Thrones is a game that was clearly developed with mobile displays in mind. The game presents you with difficult kingdom management situations in the land of Westeros and it’s up to you to swipe right or swipe left and choose your most desired situation. Swipe left or right, see the outcome, and hope that you won’t die just after a few turns.

Depending on your actions, you’ll meet some famous Game of Thrones characters and unlock new campaigns based on their stories. At first, you can only play as Daenerys, but you’ll quickly unlock campaigns starring Sansa, Arya, Jon Snow, Tyrion, and many others.

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That’s when you know you messed up.

I was underwhelmed at first. The stupidly simplistic gameplay and charming but repetitive visuals screams “cheap mobile game”. They took Tinder and made it into a game. The sound department did heck of a job at providing a proper Game of Thrones experience thanks the licensed soundtrack straight from the series, but the Banjo-Kazooie-esque gibberish the characters spout gets on the nerves.

For all the simplicity and underwhelming production value, there’s something I couldn’t deny. I was swiping left and right and dying, yet I couldn’t stop playing. At first, I was dying very quickly, unable to maintain my place on the Iron Throne for more than five moons, but that didn’t discourage me at all. I’d choose a different character, choose different solutions, new outcomes. I would cheer when a famous character appeared, meaning I had just unlocked a brand new campaign to incompetently mess up. I was hooked.

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Err, are we talking about a bubble bath?

To be fair, while the game is best suited for mobile screens, the fact I was playing it on a laptop with my headphones on made me concentrate more on the story and the outcomes that would ensue. The great soundtrack definitely helped amp up the epic factor as well.

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The dwarf has a point.

Reigns: Game of Thrones is still very fun and addictive on PC, even if its graphics and simplistic mechanics are better suited for mobile phones. Even if you’re not acquainted with the complicated lore of the Game of Thrones franchise, Reigns: Game of Thrones is accessible and addictive enough for you to play over and over and over in order to unlock new endings and beat your survival record. The Reigns formula fits perfectly with the Game of Thrones franchise. It works so well I want a House of Cards one now.

 

Graphics: 6.0

Minimalist renditions of famous Game of Thrones characters are undeniably charming, but the lack of animation and repetitive backgrounds get tiresome quickly.

Gameplay: 5.5

Swipe left or swipe right. Design is better suited to a phone.

Sound: 8.0

Licensed Game of Thrones tunes are played at all times. Characters spout low-quality and obnoxious gibberish.

Fun Factor: 9.0

Simple gameplay allows for a quick but engaging mental puzzle.

Final Verdict: 7.5

Reigns: Game of Thrones is available now on PC and mobile.

A copy of Reigns: Game of Thrones was provided by the publisher.

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About Leo Faria

Founder and mastermind behind Way Too Many Games, hailing from the southern swag that is São Paulo, a Sega widower who considers the Dreamcast to be the greatest console ever released, the greatest Guitar Hero and Tetris player you’ll ever meet. My favorite games include Perfect Dark, Banjo-Tooie, the Guitar Hero series, Bioshock Infinite and Star Wars Rogue Squadron II. I also own an Ouya. Never turned it on.

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