November 28, 2012

The Long Road Ahead

Lasting First Impressions of Lego Lord of the Rings

Developed by TT Games  |  Published by Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment

Lego LOTR Boxart» I love Lego. If you were to visit my home you would see my epic 5200 piece Millennium Falcon along with other Star Wars Lego, Lord of the Rings Lego and even some original Space Lego sets from the early 1980s.  Needless to say, I also love TT Games’ Lego video games that have graced our beloved consoles since the first Lego Star Wars appeared back in 2005. In the subsequent years, several wonderful movie franchises have been transformed into the cute and humourous Lego creations and now it’s time for the epic The Lord of the Rings movie adaptation to square off.

Lego Lord of the Rings, from TT Games, follows, in a very abridged form, all three of Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings movies.  I was surprised to find that this was made as only one game instead of a series as was done with Harry Potter, Star Wars, and even Indiana Jones.  Perhaps turning the game into a trilogy, like the movies, would have been too much for some players. I can only hope then, that Lego The Hobbit will be forthcoming after the last of the upcoming trilogy.

LegoLOTR screen 1Lego Lord of the Rings is everything you would expect from the Lego series of games, but with a whole lot more. First of all, this is the first Lego game to feature the full voice acting directly from the movies themselves.  These are not new recordings from the original actors; all the music, sound effects and dialogue is directly out of the epic 12 hour masterpiece.  At first I thought this direction would detract from the beloved silliness and humour we have come to expect from Lego games, but was pleasantly surprised that it does not.  While it does add a much more serious and dark tone to the game, as the movies themselves are, the developers at TT Games have expertly added enough humour into the animation cut scenes to cut the tension just enough without it feeling out of place.

This is a huge game too.  While I’m sure I have only just touched the surface of what’s available in this game, I can see from the onset that what we have here is one of the largest Lego games to date.  Not only does this take players through the main Lord of the Rings story through the typical Story Mode and subsequent Free Play mode, but now they have added new “Quests” to the roster as well as crafting items and a map with destination markers.  Quests are available to the player by speaking to the many NPC characters found throughout the different towns that Frodo and the Fellowship will travel. These quests are in addition to the main story and simply aid in extending the gameplay.  In each town a Map Marker can be found that will open up and show the location of all the extras available in that area and allows for quick travel to each located town.  With a map that is as large as Middle Earth is, these quick travel points are a must to get around and redo any missions.

Lego LOTR screen 2

I was pleasantly surprised with how much substance has been crammed into this single Lego game. Fans of these games will have hours of enjoyment awaiting them. As a fan of The Lord of the Rings books and movies, I found that the humour was interwoven into the serious tone of this story brilliantly.  It is serious where it needs to be and humourous where it works.  The silliness that is inherent with any Lego game never detracts from the epic and grand scale of this adventure.

TT Games has continuously improved upon their games, one game after the other, and are never afraid to try something new. Lego Lord of the Rings is a masterpiece and, if this were the last Lego game ever made, it will have gone out on a high note.  Let’s just hope that’s not the case.

TT Games, I gave you an hour and I am IMPRESSED.

About the Author

Sean is an avid gamer and lover of all thing tech. He is a dedicated husband and the father to three beautiful daughters. In addition to taking his love of gaming to a new level with this site, Sean is also host of our podcasts: The OMG! Hour, Lost Treasures of Gaming, and Primetime as well as the bi-weekly podcast mashup show, Gamers Unscripted. Follow Sean on Twitter as @Xiantayne and this blog as @OMGnexus.



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  1. I only tried the demo (the battle of Helm’s Deep), but I found that I did not like that they used the actual recorded dialogue from the films and had the Lego talking; I don’t know exactly how to explain it, but the silly cutscenes and non-talking characters of past Lego games made it feel a little like actual kids playing with toys… where recreating the exact dialogue/scenes from the film took away a bit of that fun childishness for me, alas. Then again, after so many largely similar Lego games, you can’t fault them for trying something different, there. 🙂

    • Sean

      I would have agreed with you before playing the game too. I was worried how it would turn out. I think the issue here is that LOTR is not a light-hearted story so how do you make it all typical silly Lego without losing the seriousness of the story? By adding in the real voices, they retain the dark tones of the world but the animations still add some of the Lego humour in ways that really work without detracting in any way.

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