The Bargain Games Club: Lego Lord of the Rings

Lego_Lord_of_the_Rings_cover-1Lego Lord of the Rings
Price: About £15

I’ve been playing this with Taylor on co-op mode, so this is a bonus edition of the Bargain Games Club reviews!

This has been my favourite Lego game in many ways, but also one with a couple of really REALLY annoying traits.

It’s my favourite because it so faithfully recreates the Lord of the Rings films, and does so with great humour and using the real voices of the actors (sound bites from the films, rather than fresh acting) which gives it both the Lego freshness and a sense of authenticity. Middle Earth is a delight to explore, and they’ve done a masterful job of making it feel epic and massive without it taking hours to traverse.

The characters are so varied in their abilities as well – the puzzles and the cooperation between the characters is better than in any other version of a Lego game I’ve played. It really incentivises collecting all the characters, unlike in Batman or Marvel, where you have one or two seriously overpowered characters from the outset, making it unnecessary to do much collecting.

Plus the characters are rendered so fabulously in Lego, you want to collect them all just for the joy of playing as them.

There were a couple of annoying points though. For one, the mithril brick system – using the bricks you collect to create new tools, meaning any character can have a bow or strength or a rope or whatever, just as soon as you’ve unlocked it and had it made. In theory, this was a great idea, and a few comedy items – like a bow that fires carrots – kept the laughs coming. But realistically, it was a nightmare trying to find the tool you wanted among the multitudes of things you could collect or create. And making things at the blacksmith took AGES.

Then there were the collecting missions. There are red bricks to unlock arrows to point to mini kits, missions and character tokens, but you never got any sort of pointer for the ‘finding’ missions within levels. Which lead to replaying a couple more than once and eventually resorting to looking some of them up. It’s my pet hate in Lego when you have to replay the levels more than once. Once you’ve got through the main storyline, you should have unlocked enough for you to unlock everything on one more play through. Otherwise it gets annoying.

But that aside, I loved playing this. With the music from the film and the soundbites, along with magnificent rendering of Middle Earth in Lego, playing this made me want to watch the movies all over again, and existing in Lego Middle Earth was a delight.

Next Up: Skyrim, still, but also our next co-op venture will be Dead Island

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