Last week I had the chance to watch a 20-minute gameplay presentation of The Lord of The Rings Gollum. We’ve had our fair share of Lord of the Rings games over the years, from licensed movie games to digital card games to games like Lord of the Rings Conquest.
The Lord of the Rings Gollum's Take On A Stealth Adventure
Most notable is the Shadow of Mordor and Shadow of War games that were released this past generation.
Gollum takes the series in an entirely different direction by focusing on one of the most iconic characters in the Tolkien universe. Gollum
In the presentation, Gollum was making his way through mines, and slave pits found below the Barad Dur tower.
Gollum can climb, jump, and scurry his way through the environment. The sheer verticality of the game was impressive. Its level design was reminiscent of something like Dishonored, where climbing high above the enemies or beneath them were all viable.
Gollum can use his small stature to crawl through spider tunnels which can help him avoid enemies altogether. Of course, this is only if you can find said tunnels, which help bolster exploration.
This coupled with hand-drawn maps that have to be found in the environment helps provide a sense of danger. Running around the environment without a map to provide direction can be incredibly dangerous. Luckily, Gollum’s moveset can mitigate some of the danger found lurking around.
While the game’s build was a bit older than the current build, it still featured Gollum wall-running, doing walljump combos, and swinging from poles.
A big highlight from the demo was the fact that Gollum isn’t always alone in his adventure. At a point in the demo, Gollum meets up with the character Grashneg, who ends up joining you for a portion of the mission. Grashneg compliments Gollum by using his strength to break through obstacles, while Gollum can guide Grashneg through the tunnels by using his dark vision.
It seems that while Gollum has many weaknesses, the game will compensate by having Gollum collaborate with other characters to enhance the puzzles in the environment.
Another big takeaway from the presentation was a moment where the player had the choice to kill an orc, this is where the player had to choose between Gollum’s thoughts or Smeagols’s thoughts.
Choices will impact the game down the line; sometimes helping a character will pay off down the road, or sometimes not killing a character will lead to a more difficult path. There’s a reason Smeagol had to become Gollum to survive in this world.
Stealth is obviously the crux of this game. Everything in the game makes noise, and sensing that noise is a massive advantage for Gollum, but enemies can hear a noise as well. Being quiet is key to surviving areas with many enemies.
Gollum will have to find items around the environment lke food to heal or rocks to provide distractions to stealthily move past the orcs. This further provides a reason to check every nook and cranny of an area. The more items you have on hand the more options you have for each encounter.
Below you can watch the brand-new trailer for Gollum that premiered during the Future Games Show. The Lord of the Rings: Gollum will release in 2022.