EA and Capital Games are creating a The Lord of the Rings mobile title for iOS and Android called Heroes of Middle-Earth through a partnership with Middle-Earth Enterprises.
Classic fantasy novels have donned bookshelves for generation after generation, but none is more storied than those of J.R.R. Tolkien and the adventures to be had on Middle-Earth and beyond. The Lord of the Rings is one of the pillars of geekdom, and while a mobile entry might not be the blockbuster title that super fans always want to sink their teeth into, The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle-Earth looks to offer hundreds of hours of gameplay and daily content for that same audience.
The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle-Earth is a collectible-driven, strategy-RPG where players get to experience multiple game modes, competitive play, and an expansive collection of characters to collect. Even though this mobile iteration of these classic tales has clearly gone through a lot to open up the story and create the sort of mobile title you would expect, The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle-Earth looks like some good old-fashioned fun, even if some Tolkien-purists might have some issues here and there.
The story begins when a new Ring of Power comes into the fold that grants visions and influences across timelines where an unknown enemy looks to corrupt the stories of Middle-Earth. It’s up to you to stop this menace and fix the timeline! Teamed up with Earendil and other ring-bearers, you’ll have to fight, upgrade and more to fix the timelines and save Middle-Earth.
While this story is a bit out of left field and adds an odd Marvel-esque, sci-fi time-hopping mechanic that doesn’t really mesh with classic Tolkien, it is a creative way to allow the player to bounce between different parts of the universe, so I guess whatever works! While The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle-Earth seems to go against the source material a bit in order to open up more of the history, it still comes together in the end as long as you don’t let it get to you that bad.
“The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle-Earth looks like some good old-fashioned fun, even if some Tolkien-purists might have some issues here and there.”
The more interesting part of how the team at Capital Games has opened up The Lord of the Rings lore is how they can now ask “What If?” questions and present them for the players to see. For example, what if Galadriel had taken The One Ring and become The Dark Queen, or what if Smeagal hadn’t? Tons of other new ways to traverse things we’ve previously known as canon are now completely opened up, which means a ton of new content could be here when delving deep (Helm’s Deep?).
Driven by letting the player gather as many characters as possible to build a team with, The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle-Earth, lets you combine all of your favourites on the battlefield. Each character has special abilities and ways they interact with other characters, making team-building an interesting part of the game. Additionally, enemies like goblins or orcs can have varying abilities that you may need to pair up against.
The combat is done in real-time with timers set to attacks and abilities. Outside of that, the gameplay is pretty bare-bones, but things are kept simple for mobile. Customization and game modes, like Raids, are the real ways you gain diversity, and it appears Capital Games and EA plan to have an extensive content map for players to enjoy.
With plenty of mobile features, like coins, diamonds, and chests, The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle-Earth is clearly here to make money, which is necessary for all games to thrive. If you were hoping this title would be the one to break that mould that most mobile titles have taken on, you’ll be disappointed, but the push on character collection and stories to be found makes it a title worth exploring, even if you don’t plan on spending.
Long-time fans of The Lord of the Rings will want to download it when it becomes available today, May 10th, 2023, for iOS and Android. Even if the story is a bit nonsensical in terms of staying true to the source material, it’s still something new, interesting, and wholly unique for the Tolkien-verse. Additionally, while the gameplay can leave a lot to be desired, the differing game modes, character combinations, and customization make the basic attack-tapping structure a bit more interesting.
While The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle-Earth definitely won’t be for everyone, and the mobile features are something that will turn some players off, for those who want something new from The Lord of the Rings and want to do so on the go, then The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle-Earth may be for you!