There is some disapointing news regarding casting on HBO's A Game of Thrones. It seems that Catelyn Stark has been recast with Jennifer Ehle being replaced by an Irish actress I've never heard of by the name of Michelle Fairley. Fairley's apparent claim to fame is portraying Mrs. Granger in the final two Harry Potter film. Don't ask me why Mrs. Granger appears in either film, as I am just as baffled as you. I thought Ehle was a good choice for Catelyn, while Fairley, despite being a few years younger than Bean who is playing Eddard, looks a little old and haggard to me.
Further there is a possability that Daenarys is also being recast. In addition to the fact that I thought Tamzin would be fine in the role this is going to result in even more reshooting. One might wonder if they plan on reshooting the entire pilot. If that is the case hopefully the original will appear on the eventual DVD set. I for one would be interested to see the difference.
On a seperate but related topic several members of my gaming group and I got together to play the A Game of Thrones board game. It had been a long time coming, with suspence having been built up for the last few months. I am happy to say that the game did not disapoint. I lived up to its reputation over at BoardGameGeek.com.
The game features five of the great houses (Stark, Greyjoy, Lannister, Baratheon, and Tyrell) vying for control of Westeros. I played as House Greyjoy while Revil who was also playing in the game took the part of House Stark. The Game got off to a very slow start as we all had to learn the rules, but a few turns in we had learned the ropes. The game is sympal at first glance but with a variety of complexities that make it a very interesting strategy game. The game is usually highly diplomatic, though the first Clash of Kings, a kind of auction for several powers within the game, drew some some pretty hard lines. An alliance between House Greyjoy (Myself) and House Stark (Revil) proved to be the most pivotal of all the alliances forged in the game. It was formed chiefly to spite ManOnFunTrip who had screwed me over for the Iron Throne, and who was hosting the game.
Once we moved into the middle turns things really stated to heat up. House Baratheon (ManOnFunTrip) and House Tyrell (His Wife) were engaged in some very heated battles in the far south. This caused Barathon to move his troops out of Dragonstone to reinforce his war efforts. This proved to be a very caustically mistake as NSAA (The Northern Strategic Alliance of Awesomeness i.e Greyjoy & Stark) pounced like a hungry Tiger. While Greyjoy expanded into the center of the map and the Vale of Arryn House Stark delivered the devistating blow by moving his entire navy from White Harbor to push back the Baratheon fleet and take Dragonston. From there it was all down hill for Baratheon and his allie House Lanister. NSAA kept pushing south while House Tyrell pushed north. Both houses were all but eliminated from the game when the final turn ended. As it turned out I had actually won the game on round 8, as the main victory condition was control of 7 cities and/or Castles, but we didn't know that and continued all the way through round 10.
The game is a lot of fun and I highly recommend it. Unsurprisingly the game seems more fun to those who had read the books, but more people at the table hadn't read them than had and everyone had a blast. I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys strategy board games. The game has two expansions; A Storm of Swords, and A Clash of Kings. I received a Storm of Swords for my birthday so next time we play we'll be trying that out.