E3 2008: The Lord of the Rings: Conquest Impressions - Character Classes, Campaigns, and Multiplayer

We get a look at this upcoming fantasy-themed hack-and-slash game at E3 2008.

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The E3 2008 event is underway, and we took the opportunity to sit in on a demonstration of The Lord of the Rings: Conquest, the upcoming action game from EA's now-internal studio Pandemic. The game will offer hack-and-slash action, which Pandemic suggests will continue along the same lines as Pandemic's earlier Star Wars: Battlefront series, but it will take place in the high-fantasy Lord of the Rings universe depicted in Tolkien's world-famous novels and Peter Jackson's award-winning movies.

In the game, you'll be able to play as one of four different character classes, two of which will be melee-based (the sword-swinging soldier and the dagger-wielding scout), and two of which will used ranged attacks in battle (the spell-slinging mage and the arrow-shooting archer). You'll actually be able to change which character class you're playing on the fly while going through the game's various objective-based missions, though most of those missions will involve hacking and slashing your way through crowds of enemies.

We had a chance to see two of the game's four character classes in action, the mage and the scout. The robed mage attacks his enemies by hurling magic spells, such as devastating lightning bolts, as well as by using acrobatic flourishes of his staff, which resembles the one carried by Sir Ian McKellen's Gandalf character in the motion pictures. The scout wields a dagger in each hand and alternately stabs and kicks his enemies from the front, though his most powerful ability is to make himself invisible. While hidden, the scout can instantly dispatch an enemy with a vicious stealth kill, though considering that the game will be rated T for teen by the ESRB, there will be no gouts of blood or flying body parts. Combat seems built around performing combination attacks, as well as dodging and weaving through enemies while judiciously using your character's special abilities, and picking up the small satchels (which boost your character's health) that are dropped by defeated enemies.

Apparently, the game will feature a two-part campaign of about 15 levels total (Pandemic estimates that the campaign will take about 10 hours) in which you'll first play through as the Armies of the West and reenact the events of the novels and motion pictures. You'll also periodically end up playing as various superpowerful hero characters, such as Aragorn, Gandalf, and Legolas. The second half of the campaign will take place from the perspective of the armies of Mordor in a hypothetical scenario in which The One Ring had never been destroyed. In this campaign, you'll battle the forces of light and assume the role of evil hero characters, such as the corrupted wizard Saruman and the dark lord Sauron himself. In addition to playing through the campaign by yourself, you'll be able to play through the game cooperatively, either in split-screen view in your living room or online with friends. The game will also have other multiplayer modes such as team deathmatch and an unusual mode that pits Frodo the ring bearer against bloodthirsty ringwraith players who must hunt Frodo down.

Though the early version of the game we saw seems like it has a ways to go before it's shipshape, Conquest should offer fast-paced hack-and-slash action that is accessible for players of all skill levels. The game is scheduled to ship later this year.

Discussion

88 comments
jet_racer_95
jet_racer_95

After playing the demo changed my mind because i thought that the online part of the game would be really boring and the graphics wouldnt be that good but since ive played it the graphics are superb and the gameplay online is awesome plus the campagins look stunning aswell :)

Lucpus
Lucpus

this is going to be awesome!

NeoTitan003
NeoTitan003

This is the game they should have made right after Return of the King; instead of that lame Third Age one...

truehalolover
truehalolover

i can't wait im gettin this game as soon as it comes out ,personally i love The Lord of the rings movies but the only impressin game was the two towers ,hope this one don't the gamin community down

molrok1993
molrok1993

D you level up in this game? If anyone's got an answer please message me.

rpgNerd321
rpgNerd321

It's good that The Lord of the Rings franchise is still alive. I willl get this game.

KnowSkillz
KnowSkillz

What about the multiplayer?!?!?!

MandoWolf
MandoWolf

I loved the old TT and RoTK hack and slash games, I hope this will be just as awesome, although sometimes it looks like it might be too easy during some of the gameplay videos. I just hope the people had it on easy.

jaz350z
jaz350z

The graphics have been updated to "Next-Gen." Also, the evil campaign is gonna be really interesting. I wanna see how it turns out.

killer_rabbit20
killer_rabbit20

Amazing. I've been waiting for a good LOTR game since Two Towers.

ryl417
ryl417

Awesome! More Lotr! I'm getting bored of BFME

ratavaquera
ratavaquera

hmmm Pandemic... hmm i liked a lot SW:BF II.. interesting... i would have prefered a 3rd Battlefront, but i think this might work.

Gamezster
Gamezster

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Gamezster
Gamezster

Hmmm... I'm not sure about the graphics so far. I saw one guy with a sword in a video... the sword was bigger than the guy. Than again, the Sword of Illendian was pretty big... I adored Battlefront 1 and 2. I seriously can't wait to play as an archer in Minus Tirith. And, especially, I can't wait to play as Legolas!

YakeenX
YakeenX

I really hope this works out.

Shosta211
Shosta211

Playing on both the good and evil sides should be interesting

trenno2529
trenno2529

i wonderif they"ll be like the old lotr hack-and-slash games. i enjoyed them.

Drakie_pooh
Drakie_pooh

well lord of the rings are my favorite movies, and i loved star wars battlefront, now that put it together into an awesome game, i cant wait for this game to come out, i should just go ahead and pre order it.

silverammo
silverammo

i cant wait to get this game i enjoyed battle front so ima enjoy lotr

Vasot
Vasot

From the screenshots it looks great !!! I also hope it has a good gameplay too

stantheman12345
stantheman12345

graphics look old gen gameplay looks fun i especial love the minas tirith level 3 or 4 levels is great although i do hate the you units are fodder i hate being an overly powerd tank that can kill like 100 guys in 1 swing oh well im looking forwar to dl it (to me its not worth buying so far)

slothiles
slothiles

This is gonna be sweeeeeeet looks so good!!!!!!!!!!

Jayhawk44
Jayhawk44

star wars battlefront is my favorite game on the pc and adding lotr sounds good to me

Pexalottle
Pexalottle

Pandemic Studios + EA Games + LotR + Battlefront = Pure genius

Matt9966
Matt9966

big fan of everything to do with LOTR read every book seen every movie and plus i think the battlefront games were awesome. so im buying this as soon as it comes out.

Jackyll87
Jackyll87

I am a sucker for all things LoTR. So i'm definitely buying this no matter the reviews.

bmmsballerbajwa
bmmsballerbajwa

i was a giant fan of star wars battlefront, if it turns out anything like those games, this will be amazing

wudarbassist83
wudarbassist83

Sounds pretty sweet. Looking forward to see how the gameplay turns out.

xialon
xialon

Nice new concept. Non destructable environment and no good graphics. Gameplay, storyline, and soundtrack will have to be good in order for this game to survive.

ninn1000
ninn1000

I hope that the archer class plays like the bows in Elder Scrolls, thats probably my favorite part of the games

Artemios
Artemios

graphics wise-->it's impressive hopefully the gameplay will be as impressive, i'm not mentioning anything about storyline because LOTR is ingenious!! :)

bjmage16
bjmage16

A mage in a LOTR game? Wow, do they even bother to make it faithful to the series?

Jimmik-N
Jimmik-N

Looks good, probably get this because I had both SW Battlefronts and lord of the rings is just as popular as LOTR, although, I've gotta agree with 'whereismycouch' how much longer do we have to wait for a SW Battlefront 3. Although with Pandemic delving into next-gen with this style game, SWB3 just MAY be on it's way soon (pleeeeeeeeease)

joseph_mach
joseph_mach

Could be fun. I'll keep an eye out for it.

sMeAgOl_VaDeR
sMeAgOl_VaDeR

i am a huge LOTR fan. i have every game that is LOTR based and i intend to expand my collection with this excellent game! and of course the white council.

Shishio817
Shishio817

Would've preferred a Battlefront 4, but this is pretty awesome as well.

bladez89
bladez89

i always love LOTR game..and this one too!

ahmedbilal1993
ahmedbilal1993

It has a potential of turning out an excellent game. However, it can turn out to be disastrous as well.

kingdom_jakxter
kingdom_jakxter

im a little dissapointed that there are only 4 classes... I was hearing of a fifth class called the guardian class- which coul'dve been like the tower guards from Minas Tirith for men, and like the Berserkers for Isengard, etc. All well, I guess they had to leave room for LOTR Conquest 2. Anyways, I'm still getting, this looks awesome...

stantheman12345
stantheman12345

@Valdera maybe the scout could throw a dagger or something :D