Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon finally has a release date on HBO Max

Matt Smith in House of the Dragon
(Image credit: HBO)

Game of Thrones spin-off House of the Dragon has finally been given a release date on HBO Max – and fans don’t have long to wait for Westeros’ return.

The 10-episode series, based on George R. R. Martin’s 2018 novel Fire and Blood, will begin streaming in the US and other HBO Max territories on August 21. Those in the UK will be able to access episodes at the same time as their US counterparts (on the morning of August 22) on Sky Atlantic and Now TV.

House of the Dragon will tell the backstory of the Targaryen dynasty, with events taking place 200 years prior to the events of the original show. Fans were treated to an ominous teaser trailer for the series back in 2021, but we’d expect a full-length trailer to drop imminently, given the recent news confirming its release date.

Matt Smith, Olivia Cooke, Paddy Considine, Rhys Ifans, Emma D'Arcy, Sonoya Mizuno and Steve Toussaint are all set to feature in the series as part of a vast ensemble cast, though you can find a more detailed rundown of all the show’s characters in our dedicated hub

Prior to today’s announcement, we only knew for sure that House of the Dragon would be arriving some time in 2022. In a February blog post, author and executive producer George R. R. Martin wrote: “So when will you get to see [House of the Dragon], you ask? When will the dragons dance? I wish I could tell you. Lots of work remains to be done [...] and Covid makes planning difficult. This spring? Unlikely. Maybe summer? Could be. Fall? Who knows? You’ll know when we do.”

By the sounds of it, then, August is as early as we could have hoped to see House of the Dragon on our screens. In the same post, Martin also said that “the writing, the directing [and] the acting” of the show’s first few episodes “looks terrific” – so we’re excited to finally see what HBO has been working on since canning its costly Bloodmoon series (a Game of Thrones spin-off that failed to make it past a pilot). 

In addition to news of House of the Dragon’s release date, HBO has also shared a handful of new images from the upcoming show. Check them out below:

The first of the above images shows Steve Toussaint's Lord Corlys Velaryon embracing his wife, Eve Best's Princess Rhaenys Velaryon. The former character is known as the Sea Snake, possessing the largest navy in Westeros, while the latter rides a dragon known as the Red Queen.

The second image needs no explanation: it's Paddy Considine's King Viserys looking brooding in a rather fetching Targaryen wig. 

Game of Thrones fans really are in for a treat come August 21.

Axel Metz
Senior Staff Writer

Axel is a London-based Senior Staff Writer at TechRadar, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest movies as part of the site's daily news output. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion. 

Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned an NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme.