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Nov. 14, 2005
Lord of the Rings: Tactics - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
4/12/2005EA GamesPipeworks1$79.95

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Some pretty nice effects...
Peter Jackson may have finished his Lord of the Rings trilogy of movies (and there's no signs yet of The Hobbit being made) but Electronic Arts haven't finished with their license. While it would have been easy for the company to port the PS2 action titles to Sony's handheld they have resisted the easy path and instead chosen to develop an all new title for the system. This isn't an action game either but rather a tactical RPG which follows the adventures from the films and, for the first time in an EA game, also the books.

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The turn based action.
So this game follows the plot of the movie and books fairly closely but the game is one which will be new to many LOTR fans. This is a tactical RPG. That means the game uses tactics through turn based moves rather then realtime action. Interestingly both your team and the opposition select their moves at the same time meaning you not only have to think about offensive moves but also defending against possible attack.

LOTR Tactics allows you to choose to either lead and develop the Fellowship or Shadow. Your party, which includes many of the heroes such as Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli, Frodo, Gandalf and Sauron among others can be equipped with new items, or be given upgraded skills to enhance their abilities during the game. Gamers can seize high ground, set ambushes and trap enemies while fighting battles across famous locations of the books and films to determine the future of Middle-earth.

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The odds aren't good for Aragorn.
Lord of the Rings: Tactics will feature a multiplayer mode that will allow up to four players to pit their customized heroes via WiFi on the PSP. After selecting your teams its into the turn based skirmis styled game. It should provide plenty of thrills as you battle friends across several maps, including those from the single player mode. Time will tell how exciting the multi-player mode actually is to play, but it should be top notch and a fantastic addition to this title.

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The battles look great.
As you can see from the surrounding screens this title is shaping up quite nicely indeed. The characters all look like their movie based counterparts and the effects are also quite impressive. The game also includes many cut scenes taken directly from the three movies which should add to the overall atmosphere. Also adding to the atmosphere is the audio which is also taken directly from the movie with plenty of Howard Shore music to be inspired by.

Lord of the Rings: Tactics is currently set for release in Australia on December 4th. Fans of the movies (and books) be prepared for this very solid looking title.