Cyvasse

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File:Sara Biddle The Long Plan.JPG
Prince Doran Martell playing a game of cyvasse.© FFG
Dragon and Elephant game pieces in cyvasse.© FFG

Cyvasse is a game for two players featuring ten pieces with different powers and attributes.

About

The cyvasse board changes from game to game, depending on how the players arrange their home squares. It begins with each player arranging their squares and mountains in secret. Each player in his turn moves pieces across a board of alternating colored squares.[1][2]

The game of cyvasse was introduced to Westeros by a Volantene trading ship at the Planky Town in Dorne. It was spread by the orphans traveling the Greenblood and soon the Dornish court learned to play the game.[1]

Game Pieces

  • Rabble
  • Spearmen
  • Crossbowmen
  • Light Horse
  • Heavy Horse
  • Trebuchet
  • Catapault
  • Elephant
  • Dragon - the most powerful piece in the game [3]
  • King

Influences

According to George R. R. Martin, cyvasse was inspired by "a bit of chess, a bit of blitzkrieg, a bit of stratego. Mix well and add imagination."[4]

Recent Events

Tyrion plays Qavo Nogarys in a game of cyvasse.
Art by Marc Fishman

A Feast for Crows

Myrcella Baratheon learns the game from her betrothed, Trystane Martell, when she comes to live with him in Dorne.[1] Prince Doran Martell places a cyvasse table in Princess Arianne's chambers so she can learn the game. She, however, ignores it.[5]

A Dance with Dragons

Cyvasse is played during Tyrion Lannister's voyage on the Shy Maid. It is used not only to pass the time but to obtain information and to make wagers. Tyrion, under Haldon's direction, plays the custom officer Qavo Nogarys to gain information from him. When he becomes a slave of Yezzan zo Qaggaz, Tyrion plays a game of cyvasse with Ben Plumm.

The Winds of Winter

In the camp of the Second Sons outside Meereen Tyrion plays numerous cyvasse games in Brown Ben Plumm's tent.

As the Second Siege of Meereen is commencing a Yunkish nobleman enters Brown Ben's tent during a meeting. When he recognises Tyrion he demands that the the dwarf be surrendered for punishment. Ser Jorah opens the Yunkish nobleman's throat with his longsword. The man takes two wobbly steps, falls across the cyvasse board, scatters the wooden armies everywhere and dies on the carpet. A cyvasse piece ends up at Tyrion's feet. It is the white dragon. He scoops it off the carpet and wipes it on his sleeve, but some of the Yunkish blood has collected in the fine grooves of the carving, so the pale wood appears to be veined with red.

References and Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 13, The Soiled Knight.
  2. A Dance with Dragons, p186-187
  3. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 22, Tyrion VI.
  4. So Spake Martin: Cyvasse
  5. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 40, Princess In The Tower.