Nell Tiger Free as Princess Myrcella in Game of Thrones.
Nell Tiger Free as Princess Myrcella in Game of Thrones. Photo Macall B Polay

More adventures await as we count down to Game of Thrones

THE countdown is on. What countdown do you ask? The return of Game of Thrones, of course.

It's the hit HBO show the world talks about, watches and, in some cases, illegally downloads.

So what do fans need to know ahead of season five's worldwide premiere about 48 hours from now?

Firstly, the show is going to be simulcast globally this year, meaning Foxtel subscribers will see it at the same time it airs in the US.

Secondly, Foxtel is still the only way you can legally watch the show in Australia. The pay-TV provider has the fantasy drama, based on George RR Martin's series of novels, locked up in an exclusive broadcast deal for the life of the show.

Now on to the fun stuff. A lot of things happened at the end of season four. Everyone's favourite Lannister, Tyrion, escaped from prison with the help of his brother Jamie, shot his father with a crossbow and then fled across the Narrow Sea to Pentos.

He looks set to cross paths with the "Mother of Dragons" Daenerys, if the books and spoilers are anything to go by.

Unfortunately Bran Stark and his troupe won't appear this season, according to actor Kristian Nairn (Hodor).

But there are plenty of new characters this year.

Viewers will get their first look inside Dorne, the southernmost province of Westeros from which flamboyant and ill-fated Prince Oberyn hailed.

We'll meet three of his eight bastard daughters, the "Sand Snakes", all of whom have deadly skills suited to avenging their father's death.

We'll also revisit Princess Myrcella Baratheon, the bastard daughter of Cersei and Jamie, who was sent to Dorne for her betrothal to Trystane Martell.

We haven't seen her since season two and she's played by a new actress, Nell Tiger Free.

I hope the Martells are treating her better than the Lannisters treated Sansa Stark.