The Lord of the Rings Volume 1
Tolkien's novels are probably responsible for more role-playing games than any other works of fantasy. His legendary account of Hobbits led to such enduring RPG staples as healing spells, charisma levels, and more. It's a shame that this wealth of tradition has been wasted on such a bad game.
Bored of the Rings
If you don't know the story of the One Ring, don't bother unwrapping this RP cheese. But, if you do know the story about Frodo's quest to destroy the Ring of Power, then you may want to take a look just for sentimental reasons. (Beware; this cheese doesn't get any less smelly.)
ProTip: Pippin will not join you until you clear the plains of all the Wargs.
You begin the quest playing Frodo. A second player can join as Sam after you've found him. (You must first find characters to control them. They are not selectable.) Plug in a multiple player adapter, and five players will control other characters, if you can find five people to play this. You walk through all the lands of the first book on your way to Rivendell. Unfortunately, most areas are long, indistinguishable romps.
You possess a dagger and an old cloak. You can upgrade that to different daggers (Hobbits can carry only daggers) or armors. If you control Aragorn, you can find different swords, or if you're Gimli the Dwarf, different axes. There are no other weapons or items like Helms, Rings, or Magical Items to find or use, which makes all the walking around seem pointless.
Bad Hobbits Are Hard to Break
The graphics in this game are dismal. The sprites are minuscule, even for Hobbits, and the tedious backgrounds blend into each other after awhile. The enemies are so small they seem comical.
The sounds are just slightly better than the graphics. The caves have eerie winds whistling through them, and the music, though on the cheerful carnival side when you're outside, does change from scene to scene.
- Listen for audio clues in the caves. You may not always see Bats, but you'll definitely hear them.
- You'll meet five elves just south of Merry. Don't walk away after talking to just one. Talk to all five to gather different clues.
The control in a one-player game is ridiculous. When you find another player, he aimlessly wanders off. He is also vulnerable to the dangers of the game, so while you're searching for items, he's the Blue Plate special for the forest wolves.
Hardcore RPG players shouldn't touch this one with a ten-foot Runestaff. There are no characteristics except hit points and experience levels. Forget Luck, Dexterity, or other RPG complexities.
To the North of Old Man Willow is Tom Bombadil. Show him the note from Old Man Willow -- and he'll come to your aid.
Lord is lean on challenge, as well. Getting through the areas is no problem. Enemies fly at you from all sides, but plenty of mushrooms and healing moss are around to help you out. This game should crawl back to whatever Hobbit hole it crawled out of.
Sam won't follow you unless you find the Gaffer's glasses. Look in the caves to the left of Hobbiton.
Download The Lord of the Rings Volume 1
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP
- Pentium II (or equivalent) 266MHz (500MHz recommended), RAM: 64MB (128MB recommended), DirectX v8.0a or later must be installed
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP
Considering the wealth of good material that was handed to them when they gained the Tolkein licence, Interplay didnt do an exceptionally good job with the original version of this role playing game. It was considerably marred by weedy graphics and a badly designed interface.
In creating the CD version. Interplay had a good opportunity to revise the weaker aspects of the game. Theyve chosen to bolt on a new, spoken tutorial and some clips from the animated film, but fortunately these have still left room for some welcome enhancements to the original interface. The most useful of these is an automapping feature - it was very easy to get lost in the huge game world of the original and end up wandering about aimlessly.
While its not the greatest role playing game youll ever have played, Lord of the Rings is an enjoyable enough game once you have got used to the interface which, despite the improvements, is still quite quirky. It covers approximately the territory and plot of the first book in Tolkeins classic fantasy trilogy which concerns the Hobbit, Frodo Bagginsjourney to the Elven home at Rivendell.
Initially theres a lot of wandering about to be done, but once you have talked to a few characters you will be given clues as to the minor tasks you have to achieve. In this respect the game is more like an adventure than a role playing game, but the rpg elements become more important as you get involved in combat. At these points in the game you will be all too concerned with the likes of Strength and Dexterity ratings, hit points, magic spells and special skills.
Although the manual claims that there are enough new features in the cd version to attract players who are already familiar with the original game, Im not entirely convinced that they wont be disappointed. However, if you have yet to play the game, this a good value package (its stuffed with playable and rolling demos of other Interplay products), which is worth a look if you are prepared to be patient with it.
"Interplay's newest role-player tackle: the Tolkien trilogy with top-flight graphics, sound and a new play system that should make adventuring in Middle Earth more realistic than ever before".
Interplay Productions presents the first role-playing computer game encompassing the epic fantasy world of J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle Earth. Players journey through a world inhabited by hobbits, elves, dwarves, and wizards, falling in and out of the clutches of wolves, wargs, trolls, orcs, and ghosts, all the while protecting the one true ring from falling into the grasp of the evil Lord Sauron and his Dark Riders.
"Resplendent graphics and loving attention to the Tolkien lore prove that in The Lord of the Rings, Interplay is out to forge one ring game to rule them all!"
Combining the best elements of role-playing and graphic adventures. The Lord of the Rings. Vol. I uses stunning full screen, top-down, 256 color VGA graphics, smooth four directional scrolling, digitized sound, an easy to use point-and-click icon interface, and an off-line paragraph system to bring the depth of the true Tolkien experience to life via the computer.
- Machine: SNES;
- Manufacturer: Interplay;
The Classic Story Comes to Super Nintendo
Adapted from the J.R.R. Tolkien's famous fantasy, The Lord of the Rings centers around hobbit Frodo Baggins and his quest for the ring that has the power to destroy Middle Earth. But while Frodo leads the mission, your party consists of elves, dwarfs, a wizard, and other benevolent hobbits. Each has a unique personality and decision-making skills that help you survive your journey from the foggy Barrow Downs to the darkness of the Mines of Moria.
Interplay boasts that this game has thousands of frames of rotoscoped animation, real-time combat, and SNES mouse compatibility. But the main pull for fantasy buffs is the Tolkien name itself.
- Machine: PC
Interplay's The Lord of the Rings (Volume 1) is certainly not the first attempt at capturing the Tolkien novels in computer-game form. However, I think it's the first successful attempt - so successful, in fact, that there's no real point in looking any further.
Unless your interest in the novels is the epic battles between the good and evil armies, this game will do more than satisfy your yearning for Middle Earth. It gives you Frodo, it gives you Sam, and it takes you to the places that so many of us know as well as our hometowns. Actually, it does even more. The problem with recreating the Tolkien trilogy is that so many people know the books so well. No Tolkien fan is going to put up with a game that ignores such essential elements as the Shire, Buckland, the Old Forest, the Barrow-downs, Weathertop, Bree, and Rivendell, or that lets you go around these places without going through them. And who would want a Middle Earth game without Merry, Pippin, Farmer Maggot, Rose Cotton, Tom Bombadil, Old Man Willow, Gildor the elf, and, of course, Gandalf?
But - and this is an important point - nor does anyone want a game that slavishly reproduces the novel, with nothing added or changed. There has to be something to do, after all, or you might as well just reread the books.
Interplay's version of The Lord of the Rings includes all of those familiar names and places. And to keep things interesting, it offers new quests that aren't found in the books.
For instance, in the woods east of Bag End (the hobbit home where both the novel and the game begin), two children have been lost. If you talk to the strange creature hanging around the Green Dragon Inn, you'll also learn about a lost dwarf adventurer. Head to the woods, find some ruins, then locate a cave. You'll be attacked by wolves and spiders, but there's much to be gained.
You'll discover similar quests in the Barrow-downs near the house of Tom Bombadil - which the books hint at but don't reveal.
In other words, you must complete the main quest as outlined in the Tolkien books, but you have other tasks to perform, too. These tasks force you to explore the Shire and its surrounding territory, and they also keep you somewhat off guard.
The game's player interface is a snap. Press the space bar to make the menu icons appear. Select the talk icon to recruit or dismiss members of your party, or to question other characters. Use the magic wand icon to cast spells, or the scholar icon to use specialized skills.
Besides selecting icons, the game involves moving the party around a map which occupies the full screen. The overhead view is well-rendered, especially the adventurers. The hobbits look like Tolkien meant hobbits to look, and from above you can even tell that their feet are large and bare - a nice touch.
Volume 1 takes the party from the Shire as far as Rivendell. Volume 2, due next year, will continue the quest to destroy the One Ring. Volume 3, like the third book in the trilogy, will deal with the final battles and the quest for Mount Doom.
Real Tolkien. Real Middle Earth. At last!
Now, the lands of swords and sorcery come alive. Prepare yourself as this treasured Tolkien tale - The Lord of the Rings, Volume 1 - takes you on an epic adventure through Middle Earth. This amazing game faithfully follows the adventures of the hobbit Frodo Baggins on his quest to destroy the One Ring that has the power to end Middle Earth. You find yourself in the story playing the able leader of a band of benevolent hobbits, elves, dwarves and a wizard. Each of your companions has their own unique personality and decision making skills, making your journey all the more exciting as you travel through the familiar landmarks of the Tolkien tale - from the deep fog of the Barrow Downs to the darkness of the Mines of Moria. See you there, Precious!
- Manufacturer: INTERPLAY
- # of players: 1
- Difficulty: MODERATE
- Available: AUGUST 1994
- Theme: RPG
Our tale begins in the Shire. Play as Frodo Baggins, who has inherited a ring from his uncle, Bilbo Baggins himself. This ring gives the power of invisibility to whoever wears it. But it is very evil and everybody wants to get a hold of it - this is where your story begins. Journey to Rivendale and find Elrond, King of the Elves, and deliver the ring to him. There are many dangers on the way to Rivendale. Find all of your friends for some much needed help on your journey. The entire fate of all that is good rests in your hands in this long and involving RPG.
This game is a bit of a new twist on RPGs in the sense that it has better realtime fighting - if your friends die, they die for good without any chance of bringing them back to life. The view is set in an overhead perspective so everything is within easy viewing range. Guard the ring with your life and do not let it fall into Sauron's hands.
Soon, NES players will be treated to this highly detailed quest to once again free your homelands. Detailed graphics and decent game play complement this title.
Fans of the popular Tolkien books now have a reason to rejoice. Frodo, Bilbo, Samwise Gamgee, and the other Hobbits have finally journeyed into a game system. Lord of the Rings will soon be an eight-meg game on the SNES...unless the Dark Lord of Mordor finds out first!
A Creature of Hobbit
Lord of the Rings by Interplay follows the beginning adventures (based on the first book, The Fellowship of the Ring) of Frodo as he tries desperately to get the Ring back to Mount Doom, and ultimately, to its destruction. What ring, you ask? Well, if you don't know the story of the True Ring and its origins, or of the quest to destroy it, then you won't appreciate the full scope of this game.
Basically, the Ring of Power was made by Sauron, the Dark Lord of Mordor, and it contains the power to master all living things. It also has an interesting side effect.
When you wear it, you become invisible. But those who fight for good realize that the Ring is evil, and they go on a quest to 'destroy the Ring by taking it to its original forge, Mount Doom.
Mordor, He Wrote
Reading the books before playing the game will certainly clarify a lot of things, but it isn't necessary. LOTR is structured as a straight RPG, with hit points, armor classes, and helpful items galore, so forget what you're playing for RPG amusement now, and let's hope for some real fantasy role-playing when Lord of the Rings hits the shelves.
The Lord of the Rings is based on J. R. R. Tolkien's classic Middle Earth trilogy. If you haven't read these three great fantasy novels, do it now. By the time you complete these enthralling tomes (sometime this summer), the SNES game should be ready to play.
In Lord of the Rings, you play the unassuming Hobbit, Frodo Baggins, who's on a quest to destroy the One Ring of Power, which can obliterate Middle Earth. You have the Ring. Unfortunately, the vile Lord Sauron, the 12 Dark Riders, and a huge army of nasty ghouls, goblins, and wolves want it, too.
Hobbits Know How to Party
The game's graphics will be gorgeous. They'll sport a classic fairy-tale style with contemporary twists. Most notably, Interplay is incorporating film footage from Ralph Bakshi's animated cult movie, "The Lord of the Rings," into the game. They're also using rotoscoping to create realistic character movement from thousands of frames of videotaped images of real actors.
The game play will mix action with some RPG elements. For example, the fighting will be real-time combat, but you'll also have to manage a 64-item personal inventory. You will control one character, but the game's artificial intelligence will enable you to lead a party of up to eight characters. Although you'll start out as Frodo, you'll play other characters as the story progresses. Moreover, your party will break up into smaller groups that have adventures of their own.
Naturally, you'll organize the famous Fellowship of the Ring with Hobbits, Elves, Dwarves, Humans, and the wizard Gandalf the Grey. Each character has his own unique personality and decisionmaking skills, so sometimes they'll act with minds of their own. For example, during a fight Prince Aragorn may rush into battle, while Merry and Pippin, the meek Hobbits, and linger behind. In fact, you may find all eight characters fighting individual skirmishes at once.
Next Stop: Middle Earth
The Lord of the Rings books are arguably the basis of all fantasy role-playing games. Interplay's set on bringing you a real original.
At last! The first video game based on the epic J.R.R. Tolkien saga of Middle Earth. As Frodo, the Hobbit, you must rally the Fellowship of the Ring to protect the one true ring against the evil threat of Sauron and his Dark Riders. This game will combine the best elements of fantasy roleplaying and graphic adventure.
Join Bilbo Baggins, Gandalf the Wizard, and the rest of the Ring-bearing crew in J.R.R. Tolkien's classic fantasy adventure. This RPG game's faithful to the book.