Platform: Xbox 360 Also on: 3DS, Wii Publisher: Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment Developer: Traveller's Tales PEGI Rating: 7+ Players Offline: 1 - 2 Genre(s): Platform (3D) Also Related: Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes - 360
After Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Harry Potter, Pirates of the Caribbean and Batman, we were stumped as to where the LEGO games would go next. After all, what other popular franchises did LEGO have to gameify? Then, we spotted something. Earlier this year LEGO extended their superhero range to include more than Batman, adding Wonder Woman, Superman, and a number of other DC and Marvel characters to their roster, and a few months later confirmed LEGO Batman 2: DC Superheroes. So, we thought, whatever major franchise they announced kits of next would most likely be the subject of the next game. So when they showed off a series of LEGO based on the sprawling fantasy epic the Lord of the Rings, we made a bet with ourselves that in a few months we'd be playing as little plastic renditions of Frodo, Gandalf and Pip.
And to confirm our suspicions, a few days ago the first trailer for LEGO Lord of the Rings emerged. Much like LEGO Batman 2, it seems that the game will be fully-voiced, with all the spoken dialogue being lifted directly from the films, giving it probably some of the best voice-acting of any video game - but possibly not fitting in all that well with a LEGO game and its trademark humour. One of the only problems there's always been with older LEGO titles is that if you don't already know the plot of whatever film you're playing the LEGO version of, the simplistic slapstick cutscenes probably aren't going to enlighten you that much (not that anyone plays the LEGO games for the story, anyway). With any luck, the voiced cutscenes should at least help to explain what's actually going on in the Lord of the Rings, as when we first attempted the books and saw the films as a child we were completely lost.
Each film being three and a half hours probably didn't help much.
Following the story as it's told in the films, LEGO Lord of the Rings will see you and a friend (like previous LEGO games, LEGO Lord of the Rings features a full two-player co-op mode) taking control of the Fellowship of the Ring on a quest to destroy the One Ring, an artifact created by the Dark Lord Sauron to give whoever wore it control over the wearers of the other "Rings of Power", a collection of rings gifted to the leaders of the various races of Middle Earth. Because of the immense power the ring can bestow on whoever wears it (to put it simply, whoever wears the ring rules the world), it's decided that, rather than let it exist and try and keep out of reach of evil, it would be a lot easier for everyone involved if the ring were simply destroyed. Unfortunately, the ring can only be destroyed in the same fire it was forged in, the encouragingly named Mount Doom, and so Frodo and Friends need to journey across Middle Earth to put an end to the ring's LEGOy evil. Promising the same usual LEGO mix of slapstick comedy, co-op gameplay, and puzzles mixed with platforming, this has already jumped to the top part of our most wanted list - possibly just below LEGO Batman 2.
You can watch the trailer here, and decide for yourself what you think of the voice-acting:
We're sort of against the idea of LEGO people having real voices, but it's hard to imagine that scene without Ian McKellen's booming "YOU SHALL NOT PASS". We love the LEGO games, so we'll have more information on LEGO Lord of the Rings as soon as we can!