In order to flex my faux journalist muscles I downloaded the Lego Lord of the Rings demo on the 3DS morning so that I can tell you all about it. As of this week you can also download the demo on your 3DS and be a heroic games journalist like me!
If you’ve played a Lego game before (Star Wars, Harry Potter, etc) you know what you’re getting here. It’s pretty much the same! The main difference between Lego Star Wars and Lego Lord of the Rings is that this title seems to skew more towards puzzle solving than action, which makes sense. While Aragorn fights a lot of orcs, Frodo mostly just runs around in circles until he’s killed by a giant spider.
The demo itself encompasses the Weathertop area of the game and there is absolutely nothing to fight until the very end when the Nazgul show up. What do you do before then? You, as one of the four hobbits, light fires and cook food because that’s what hobbits do. It’s a very comical scenario to solve various puzzles in order to inadvertently attract the Nazgul with your campfire just like in the book and movie. You’ll go fishing, gardening, and steal eggs from a mother crow, all in the name of supper… or dinner. One of those.
Like in past Lego titles, each character has their own unique abilities. Sam can garden and light fires, Merry and Pippen can go fishing, and Frodo can get stabbed by a Ringwraith. The demo ends when Aragorn shows up to save the hobbits from themselves by fighting the nazgul with a torch.
The demo was a delightful experience. It’s the first Lego game to feature full voice acting, but it’s not new voice acting either. It features direct lines ripped from the movie along with the movie’s dramatic score. It’s a strict contrast to the silly shenanigans the Lego characters are always up to. Frodo comically pushes Sam in front of him to save him from the Nazgul, for example. But the absurd unbalance of light gameplay with dramatic sound has a charming quality to it that I enjoy.
Look for Lego Lord of the Rings in stores on October 30th.