Game of Thrones was arguably the most well-received and critically-acclaimed new genre show of the last year – and now that the 2011 Emmys and the Golden Globes have come and gone, you can add award-winning to that list, as well.

Since closing out its first season way back in June, fans of the HBO fantasy series – based on the popular A Song of Ice and Fire series of novels by George R. R. Martin – have been waiting impatiently for their first glimpse of Season 2.

And while we’ve previously seen teasers (and a featurette) for the forthcoming season, today’s the first time we’re seeing an official trailer with undeniably significant footage all throughout.

Check it out below:

The trailer does a perfect job of giving fans of the series just enough information and imagery to temporarily satisfy our nigh-on insatiable Game of Thrones cravings while still remaining mostly vague.

We see, amongst other things:

  • Catelyn Stark, with her knife drawn on Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish — the man who betrayed her husband in the previous season, ultimately leading to his beheading.
Catelyn Stark and Littlefinger Game of Thrones Season 2: Shadow Trailer

  • Princess Daenerys, ever-seeking her rightful throne, by violence if necessary (where are her adorable dragon babies?).
Princess Daenerys Game of Thrones Season 2  Game of Thrones Season 2: Shadow Trailer

  • King Joffrey, torturing the helpless Sansa Stark because her brother’s Northern armies are proving to be difficult in battle.
King Joffrey in Game of Thrones Season 2 Game of Thrones Season 2: Shadow Trailer

  • Cersei Baratheon (formerly Lannister), hated by the people she essentially rules over, perhaps to the point of being in danger.
Queen Cersei in Game of Thrones Season 2 Game of Thrones Season 2: Shadow Trailer

  • Jon Snow, Ned Stark’s bastard, on the search for his missing uncle on the other side of The Wall – where the monstrous White Walkers lurk.
Jon Snow in Game of Thrones Season 2 Game of Thrones Season 2: Shadow Trailer

  • Arya Stark, growing hardened and more cynical as a result of her father’s unjust murder, talking about how “anyone can be killed.”
Arya Stark in Game of Thrones Season 2 Game of Thrones Season 2: Shadow Trailer

  • And most prominently, the trailer features Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage), leading us to believe that he’ll play an important part not only in the show, but also in the political world of Westeros.
Tyrion Lannister in Game of Thrones Season 2 Game of Thrones Season 2: Shadow Trailer

The trailer shows but a glimpse of Stannis Baratheon (played by Stephen Dillane) – brother to the ex-king and (arguably) the rightful heir to the throne – even though his voiceover was the only thing heard in the previous teaser. One can assume he’ll play a more impactful role over the course of the new season than he does in the trailer.

Are you excited for Season 2 to return in little more than two months? Let us know in the comments.

Game of Thrones Season 2 premieres April 1st, 2012. And no, that is not an April Fool’s joke.

Follow me on Twitter @benandrewmoore.

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