‘Gloom of Thrones’: a Card Game to Conquer the Realm

Geek Culture
Gloom of Thrones Brings Westeros to your card table.

Atlas Games adds to its already great list of options for their game Gloom with Gloom of Thrones!


Atlas Games has been providing great gaming experiences for some time now. Going all the way back to its initial release of Gloom in 2004. The gloom series has added a second edition in 2014 as well as building the series with Cthulhu Gloom, Fairytale Gloom, Munchkin Gloom and Gloom in Space. Looking at the previous titles it would only make sense to add the world of Westeros to the collection with Gloom of Thrones. The point of Gloom is to score points through suffering. This may sound antithetical to a happy gaming experience but I assure you that this is joy born out of your character’s misery.

Initial Thoughts

Gloom of Thrones comes in a Tuck Box with two decks of 55 cards each. The illustrations are fabulously campy and designed by Brian Patterson with graphic design by Nicolas Glusenkamp. I like the fact that the game has enough cards for decent gameplay without being too cumbersome and the quality behind each card is phenomenal in construction and design.

Setting up was simple and straightforward. I sat down with my son and girlfriend, and passed out the family of five characters to each of them. Each one of us began telling our family stories of Gloom. This is a lot of fun and creative even though some players not familiar with RPG-style storytelling may need some prompting to get into the spirit of things. Once we were past the initial phase it was time to see who could be the most miserable. The clear cards make it so easy to add and read modifiers and help expedite the process. We wrapped up our first game in about forty-five minutes and I have to say that for me personally, the storytelling was the high point but the tactics were also very fun and enjoyable.

Gameplay Basics (From the Publisher)

In Gloom of Thrones, each player has a family of five Characters. Players try to make their own families the most miserable while cheering up the other players’ families.

Characters become sad or happy primarily by having Modifier cards played on them. Each Modifier affects the Self-Worth score of the Character it’s played on. Players also play and discard Event cards for various immediate effects.

As the game continues, the Characters are killed off one by one, as Untimely Death cards are played on them. When one entire family has succumbed to Untimely Deaths, the game ends. Self-Worth scores are then tallied, and the most miserable player wins the game.


Design and Production: Kyla McT
Illustrations: Brian Patterson
Gloom Created By Keith Baker
Graphic Design: Nicolas Gluesenkamp
MSRP: $24.95
Atlas Stock #: AG1335
ISBN: 978-1-58978-195-5
Format: Two 55-card decks and a rules sheet in a tuck box
Number of Players: 2-4
Ages: 14+
Play Time: 60 minutes
Release Date: December 2nd, 2019

Final Thoughts and Recommendation

Gloom of Thrones is a fun, fast-paced and simple card game that you can pull out during a lunch break with friends, while sharing a coffee or a few drinks, and especially for a family game night. It looks and plays great. If you are already a fan of all things Westeros I could not imagine why you would not grab this game up to add to your collection. It may be time to retire that old UNO deck you have been carrying around forever and give Gloom of Thrones a try. If the setting is not to your liking than Atas Games has some great alternatives for you to try out. At $24.95 it should not break the bank especially since you do not need to constantly add booster decks to enjoy it. So go out and have yourself a Gloomy time!

A review sample was provided by Atlas Games.

To read my previous articles and reviews click Here.

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