Peter Jackson has recently spoken out against the various Lord of the Rings video games, saying that he’s displeased with EA’s efforts. I can’t say that I blame him. All points about Jackson’s lackluster relationship with EA aside, the games themselves have struck me as fairly underwhelming.
The Third Age was the only one I found remotely interesting. And it was decent enough, all things considered. But I wish that it wouldn’t have felt so obligated to follow the movies’ storyline as closely as it did. (Or rip off entire scenes and recast them in an entirely new and entirely wrong context, for that matter.) If it had used those as a jumping off point, rather than a too-obvious parallel, it could’ve been much more enjoyable. And I’ve never really had a strong need to play any of the other LOTR games either, as they just feel like needless retreads.
Tolkien’s world is a huge one, geographically and historically. Surely there’s room in there somewhere for a decent, if not truly great video game. Maybe it’ll be the upcoming MMORPG, even though it’s all about fighting Sauron… again. No Silmarillion action. Sigh.
Personally, I’ve always thought that the whole concept of the Dúnedain Rangers would lend itself to a LOTR game. It would dovetail quite nicely with the established storylines of the books and/or movies, while leave plenty of room for new storylines, characters, adventures, etc.