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HBO orders more Game of Thrones

Days after the launch of the third season of Game of Thrones, premium cable network HBO has ordered a fourth run of the fantasy drama.

The fourth season order, announced by programming boss Michael Lombardo, came as the new season delivered the best ratings yet for the show.

The third season of Game of Thrones, which is based on the bestselling book series by George R.R. Martin, launched in the US on Sunday, March 31.

HBO said the early ratings data shows the new series generated the best numbers yet, with an average of 4.4 million viewers. That compares with 4.2 million for the finale of season two and 3.9 million for the opener of that season.

The best-ever numbers for the show, however, pale next to those for The Walking Dead and The Bible on basic cable nets AMC and History on the same night.