Today, May the Fourth, is the perfect day for news about a game set in a cult favorite fantasy universe. That universe is, of course, J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth. New screenshots of Daedalic Entertainment’s Lord of the Rings: Gollum reveal a first look at this upcoming game.
Surprisingly, the game doesn’t look much like the version of The Lord of the Rings that fans will be familiar with from Peter Jackson’s movies. Nor does Gollum look like the Shadow of Mordor and Shadow of War games that have continued the aesthetic style of the films.
Instead, these screenshots make Lord of the Rings: Gollum look bright, colorful, and a little cartoonish. The titular character is recognizable, taking a lot of cues from his movie counterpart, but it’s clear that this game is a very different beast.
Based on these images, the game will have some kind of mechanic reflecting the multiple voices bouncing around in Gollum/Smeagol’s head. Focusing a game entirely on one of the weaker characters in the Tolkien mythos wouldn’t really lend itself to the power fantasy of a Shadow game, so this feels like the right direction to take.
Making Lord of the Rings: Gollum colorful
The screenshots are reminiscent of 2003’s The Hobbit, which dared to give its source material a cute, soft look at a time when Jackson’s grim and gritty movies were at the height of their popularity.
This is no bad thing — as The Hobbit movies prove, not every aspect of Tolkien lore demands a dark tone. What’s more, allowing the team at Daedalic the opportunity to experiment with its own style will likely lead to a more unique final experience.
There’s likely a long time to wait before Lord of the Rings: Gollum is ready for launch, but based on these screenshots, the game could be worth the wait.