Although Peter Jackson is shooting two upcoming Hobbit films, another Lord of the Rings game has been unleashed on the market, LOTR: War In the North.
Helping to put a new game on the market while making a movie is nothing new for Jackson. He was a big fan of Halo and was going to produce the movie version at Universal, and also licensed a King Kong game to Ubisoft, which was being put together while he was making the movie.
As Andre Maguire, head game designer of War in the North, told the L.A. Times, “The Tolkien story has so much depth to it, [yet] it’s really important to that and keep things true to Tolkien’s vision.”
“[We also brought in] different characters that weren’t in the movies that we’ve been able to visualize. Also different areas of Middle-earth [that] were never before in a game. So we’ve been able to invent the looks of these places that were described in the books in a unique way,” he added.
As the Times notes, the War in the North obviously hasn’t gotten the hype and push of the new Batman game, Arkham City, but LOTR fans are clearly aware of it, and have been awaiting the title for a long time.
While Rings is a big literary property, a video game series is a no-brainer because of the lengthy story, landscape and characters, and it’s a step along the lines of the Dungeons and Dragons series of the ’80’s.
Although the LOTR games haven’t been blockbusters, they traditionally do quite well with the fans and critics. The powers that be behind War of the North acknowledged they’re facing stiff competition against bigger titles this season, but the games clearly have a nice stronghold of loyal fans, and there’s obviously way more to offer here than the usual first person shooter fare.