The Lord of the Rings: Legends of Middle-earth
Is this trip down the hobbit hole worth your time?
Though console behemoth Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor takes top honors when it comes to making waves in the Lord of the Rings world, Warner Bros. Interactive didn't stop there, and decided to create another game to complement the franchise. Mobile game The Lord of the Rings: Legends of Middle-earth is a much different affair, a free-to-play title where you can recruit lots of characters from the LOTR mythos and more. It's an interesting departure, and worth checking out, especially for fans of the story.
Under Gandalf's watchful eye, players can choose to play as several classes: a Human, Dwarf, Elf, or Hobbit. You will complete quests and explore the in-game world by spending stamina, which recharges over time. You need only tap the explore button to do so, and you'll travel around the world.
Combat is a turn-based affair with automatic movements taken. You don't even have to put up with it, since it's an automatic and very streamlined process. You can even fast forward if it's not something you're very interested in to save time. Most of the focus is on collecting new allies and opening up more of the map, which is addictive in its own way.
There's a lot of emphasis placed on collecting heroes and spending premium currency for upgrades and exploration, so if this isn't something you're interested in you may shy away from this offering. What's more, exploring familiar areas isn't exactly that scintillating, given the fact that you mainly look forward and watch the road advance. There are plenty of opportunities for improvement, mainly on the free-to-play front, which is to be expected in this day and age.
It's fun and challenging to collect new characters and explore the Lord of the Rings universe, but there are some issues that plague the game thanks to the free-to-play nuances inside that may turn potential players away. Anyone looking for a quick and easy portal into the universe, however, should be pleased.