As I mentioned in my review for the first episode of Telltale's Game of Thrones, this six-part adventure series is a solid tangential side plot to the main story, with House Forrester's plights more or less falling in line with House Stark's own downfall. The second episode, Lost Lords, continues the discomforting sense of injustice as House Forrester is poked and prodded, tortuously so, as its territory, respect, and stock of precious ironwood diminish. Indeed, as George R.R. Martin implies, no good deed goes unpunished in Westeros.
Following the terrible ending of the first episode by the hands of a cruel character who fans will surely recognize, House Forrester still flounders under the pressure of being on the losing side of the war. House Whitehill desires their ironwood and mocks them by stationing its soldiers in the Forrester's estate. It would seem that House Forrester, outmanned and with its family members scattered about, will eventually succumb to the inevitable.
Luckily, two Forresters return to the forefront, one of which will remain nameless (to have this review remain spoiler-free) and the other being Asher Forrester, the second-eldest son who has been exiled in Yunkai and becomes under the player's control after Daenerys Targaryen frees the city in the main story. He stalwartly travels with Beshka, a no-nonsense female mercenary who would clank beers with Brianne of Tarth, and considering their four-year experience as sellswords (I imagine that's an impressively long time in this unforgiving world), they gladly take over much of the action and QTEs that Gared Tuttle had in the first episode.
Speaking of which, Gared has been exiled to the Wall in the North and goes through all the growing pains Jon Snow had earlier in the canon. He must deal with bullies, make comrades fast, and impress them with his battle prowess, all while deciding whether he should reveal the secret that he's been holding since the opening of the first episode. In fact, that's part of the reason he wants to be a ranger. Hopefully, the point behind his arc will reveal itself sooner than later.
On the other side of Westeros, Mira must decide how best to protect her own standing as a handmaiden of Margaery Tyrell and bolster her alliance with Tyrion Lannister from the first episode. The decisions she must make may be political, which might seem boorish, but they actually have the most intensity, asking you to weigh the short-term against long-term. Perhaps being a cutthroat is what must be done, because as Cersei claims, either you win or you die. The tension here is palpable, as you'll have no idea whether a morally right or wrong decision will bite you in the ass. But survival may mean being as brutal as your enemies.
While this second episode ramps up the stakes, however, it still boils down to a massive waiting game. All of the chess pieces have yet to fall into place, and it's difficult to say how any of your choices will impact the later, more pivotal episodes. Contained within themselves, the events of each episode so far haven't changed much no matter which supposedly significant decision you choose. The payoff remains questionable, so if you're dubious about this series based on the first episode, this second episode won't change your mind. If you're all for the illusion of choice, then don't play any of these episodes twice until every episode is released.
For better or worse, Telltale's episodic interpretation of Game of Thrones still remains close to the HBO television show. As a piece of straightforward storytelling, it has enough tension and relevance for any fan of the Game of Thrones universe. But as a game, we have yet to see whether the series will be forced to coil around a strict plotline where your decisions matters little. Lost Lords carries the torch from Iron from Ice—no more, no less.