game of thrones
Credit: Macall B. Polay / Courtesy of HBO

Game of Thrones may be wrapping up production on its eighth and final season, but HBO is showing that it’s nowhere near finished with the iconic universe created by George R.R. Martin. The premium cable network has officially ordered its first Game of Thrones prequel pilot from Martin and writer Jane Goldman.

While Game of Thrones has often referenced legends of early Westeros, we’re about to experience that history firsthand. The untitled prequel series will take place thousands of years before the events in Game of Thrones — meaning none of the characters we’ve come to know and love (or hate) will appear in Goldman and Martin’s series.

Per Variety, the series will follow “the world’s descent from the golden Age of Heroes into its darkest hour. And only one thing is for sure: from the horrifying secrets of Westeros’ history to the true origin of the white walkers, the mysteries of the East to the Starks of legend–it’s not the story we think we know.”

This prequel already sounds wild, and we are SO here for it. If there’s one thing we’ve learned about Game of Thrones, it’s that the narratives we take for granted could be upended at any time (ahem, Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark).

Goldman and Martin wrote the story for the series, while Goldman will serve as showrunner and writer. The pair will also executive produce the prequel series alongside Daniel Zelman and current Game of Thrones executive producer Vince Gerardis. While Goldman’s series is the first to get a green light from HBO, there are four other Game of Thrones prequel series currently in the works from writers Max Borenstein, Brian Helgeland, Carly Wray, and Bryan Cogman.

While saying goodbye (forever!) to Jon Snow, Daenerys Targaryen, and all our beloved Game of Thrones characters is going to be difficult, we can’t wait to explore Westeros during the first rise of the White Walkers. And naturally, we’re so excited to see the prequel series in the very capable hands of Jane Goldman.

The eighth and final season of Game of Thrones is set to air on HBO in 2019.