Lord of the Rings prequel coming to Xbox One, PS4

Monolith Productions working on Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor for current- and next-gen consoles, but not Wii U; set between events of The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings.

Warner Bros. today announced Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, an all-new third-person Lord of the Rings prequel in development for current- and next-generation consoles and PC, but not Wii U. The game was originally revealed today by Game Informer.

Guardians of Middle-earth and Gotham City Impostors developer Monolith Productions is creating the game, which will be published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. No release date has been announced.

Unlike past Lord of the Rings games, which were based on major events and characters from the fiction, Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor tells an original story and is set between the events of J.R.R. Tolkien's acclaimed fantasy novels The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

It stars an all-new character, Talion, a ranger described by developers as conflicted in much the same way that Boromir, Galadriel, and Saruman were. Players will journey deep into Mordor in the time before it becomes a wasteland.

"In Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, gamers take on the role of Talion, a valiant ranger whose family is slain in front of him the night Sauron and his army return to Mordor, moments before his own life is taken. Resurrected by a Spirit of vengeance and empowered with Wraith abilities, Talion ventures into Mordor and vows to destroy those who have wronged him. Through the course of his personal vendetta, Talion uncovers the truth of the Spirit that compels him, learns the origins of the Rings of Power and ultimately confronts his true nemesis."

A Nemesis System will ensure every enemy players encounter is a "unique individual" whose personality, strengths, and weaknesses differ. What's more, if a player falls at the hand of one of these enemies, that enemy will survive and grow stronger. Warner Bros. also said that players will be able to craft their own battles, enemies, and rewards within a "dynamic world" that remembers and adapts to player choices.

Lord of the Rings enthusiasts may be happy to know that Monolith Productions collaborated with Middle-earth Enterprises, Lord of the Rings film director Peter Jackson, and Weta Workshop to "ensure that the settings, characters, and story align with authentically within canon" for Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor.

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Eddie Makuch

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.
151 comments
tightwad34
tightwad34

Don't know why they can't make a good LOTR rpg for the consoles. The setting doesn't get more rpg like and you would think there are devs out there capable and smart enough to cash in on it with a good game.

R083R70
R083R70

I personally really enjoyed War in the North, but I would really like to experience Middle Earth in a truly open experience (LOTRO excluded I'm referring to single player) as I'm sure do many others. 

roganth
roganth

@eddie makuch could you get someone to update GS database so there is a follow link for this game?

rIVAL_sWORD84
rIVAL_sWORD84

it will be interesting   to see where it goes from here, too sad no WiiU Version i enjoyed with wiiU game pad so far its sad to see no wiiU version for number of upcoming current gen games, guess i will play on ps3 then

Dordledum
Dordledum

could be great, could be terrible. but there is potential at least. I'm interested.

S-181
S-181

Sounds alright, but this "Resurrected by a Spirit of vengeance" business doesn't sound like it fits in the Tolkien mythology at all

Sl4cka
Sl4cka

@davidmayne7 @S-181 Hated that part. First he is dead, then suddenly he is alive. Probably popped in to the laundrette to get his robe cleaned.

leimonides
leimonides

Intriguing premise;  I am very interested in this; especially since it isn't going to be some kind of random alternate side story; I like that they went to lengths to keep it "in line", as they say. That "enemy growing stronger" dynamic is going to be quite an aspect should it work well in actual implementation.

Navardo95
Navardo95

People can say what they want but Lord Of The Rings:Return Of The King was the best LOTR game I have ever played in my life...the graphical intensity of the game and the robust gameplay made it an unforgettable experience for me..

Navardo95
Navardo95

YES YES YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!

As long as it is an open world RPG adventure game and not a free-to-play crap I'm all in!!!

I fucking love Lord Of The Rings..its such a fantastic universe! :D

Collaboration with Peter Jackson? This has win written all over it.

devilzzzwin
devilzzzwin

The movies were not that great and the games much worse.  I can't imagine this game being anything better than anything in the past.  Movie games often fail and I expect more of the same here.

spikepigeo
spikepigeo

@devilzzzwin "The movies were not that great"... an opinion, yes. But a fundamentally wrong one, to say the least.

bjord28
bjord28

It sounds like a good game but hope you can re-name the character and play with friends would be awesome to go to Mordor, The Shire, Rohan, and Mines or Moria. in third person like a gears of war. but swords and bows. Will keep my eye on it.


hadlee73
hadlee73

My preference would be open-world and collectible turnips.

SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

I find it hard to get excited about this.

barrybarryk
barrybarryk

Damnit Monolith, make a Blood sequel or Shogo or No One Lives Forever.  I'd even settle for a TRON 2.0 sequel, but for the love of God make people stop making action RPGs based on Lord of the Rings, they're always terrible.

kingnothing47
kingnothing47

Anyone remember that final fantasy clone for the ps2 and xbox? Lotr The third age, I loved that game

Itmeow
Itmeow

@kingnothing47 That game was great fun! I recently replayed it and it wasn't quite as magical as I remembered, but I personally loved how simple the combat was.

Sefrix
Sefrix moderator moderator

Consider me interested. 

kingnothing47
kingnothing47

This game sounds like it will make me particularly moist

komuchen
komuchen

So those enemies returning will be like Seymour?

PyroX4414
PyroX4414

The idea of enemies surviving and getting stronger if they strike you down sounds really intriguing.  Imagine having an in game rival of sorts.  Exciting!  

Llama345
Llama345

They could make a LoTR game like DA:O during the 5 army war. That would be cool. 

DarkSaber2k
DarkSaber2k

"Lord of the Rings enthusiasts may be happy to know that Monolith Productions collaborated with Middle-earth Enterprises, Lord of the Rings film director Peter Jackson, and Weta Workshop to "ensure that the settings, characters, and story align with authentically within canon" 

 Yeah, because Peter Jackson is the guy who wrote LOTR and manages the estate of JRR Tolkein right? Oh wait no he's the guy that made a movie adaptation that itself strayed pretty far from canon on more than a few occasions.

cinerius
cinerius

@KeenoControl

He does have 4 children... Christopher Tolkien especially still works on the immense volume of stories and lore that wasn't organized in proper books.

funkinslick
funkinslick

@normanislost @DarkSaber2k  cinematography yes, but as far as the story goes it would have been better to title all the movies he makes "a fanfiction based on characters and events from (insert tolkien work here)" I can't watch any of the movies without arguing with them. The liberties, interpretations, additions and omissions in the plot make no sense. It's like the screenplays were churned through a focus group machine.

leimonides
leimonides

@DarkSaber2k At first I thought the same in regards to going to Peter Jackson, and especially Weta, but then, they might had gone to him as a legit example of how to bring to life the world; how to interpret the material into a visual media in an honest, faithful manor (while adding their own creativity). 

With what this studio is doing story wise, they do have a lot of room to do their own thing, but still having to adhere to some key things (and knowing what those key things would be) - maybe that's what they were looking for in going to Peter Jackson and Weta, and why they were thus included.

leimonides
leimonides

The "straying" wasn't that serious, especially since that book is a nightbare to translate into a movie setting. There is A LOT in the books that would ABSOLUTELY NOT  work at all for a movie. I can't think of a change that did any type of injustice or insult to the source material.

Vodoo
Vodoo

I liked the original LotR games that EA made back on the OG Xbox and PS2, The Two Towers & Return of the King. They were very linear, but they were really well done. 

Llama345
Llama345

@Vodoo I agree. I often think back to them and wonder where the LoTR franchise went. I personally think war in the north was not good. 

ma-ti89
ma-ti89

@Llama345 @Vodoo War in the North was a disaster, it had the potential to be great but seriously, I remember a couple of years ago when they were near release and showing the game off to gamespot. There were clear signs the game was still buggy, enemies disappearing being the most noticeable and they act like that's nothing.

DarkSaber2k
DarkSaber2k

"Guardians of Middle-earth and Gotham City Impostors developer Monolith Productions"

Not the best signs of quality. GCI was so crap they had to abandon it to F2P relatively quickly, and the other game is yet another MOBA clone. Well whopp de fucking do sure sounds like quality experience there!

barrybarryk
barrybarryk

@kingnothing47 And Blood, No One Lives Forever and Shogo: Mobile Armor Division.

And TRON 2.0 which I loved.

KeenoControl
KeenoControl

@DarkSaber2k Those are just RECENT games that WB restricted them to make. Monolith has a rich history in games. They created both the original F.E.A.R. series and the Condemned series (which happens to be one of my all-time favorites).

jessie82
jessie82

havnt they milked it to death yet

Hurvl
Hurvl

@jessie82 No, for it is the Nazghul, nor living nor dead and it will never stop milking Lotr. Not as long as there are enough Nerdghul to buy it.