Lord of the Rings: Conquest is a game that appears to be a mish-mash of various movie cinematics with a few bits of extra gaming content thrown in between. As a territorial-control third-person action game in the vein of the Star Wars: Battlefront series, it seems that Pandemic Studios was unable to translate its successful formula to the LOTR franchise with Conquest. You begin the game by choosing to ‘train’, where you can learn about the various classes and controls used by each class. You can also opt to play straight away or begin the single-player campaign.
As with every new game, it pays to go through some of the training, and for LOTR: Conquest, it’s an important part of the game. However, you could be there for hours trying to remember every single special move or skill for each class. There are loads of combos for the warrior class alone, which include basic sword strikes, a combination that uses fire damage from your sword, and an attack that creates a ‘whirling dervish’ animation.
The classes range from basic warrior class using a sword to an archer with bow and arrows. You can also play a magic user.
Movement in the game is controlled by using left, right and middle mouse buttons to attack, W,A,S,D keys for general movement and the mouse again for changing camera angles. This seems simple enough until you learn ‘combination’ attacks that use various other keys such as shift and control.
The most annoying thing in the game is the voice-overs. Whilst the narration during the cut scenes seemed fine, the voice-overs used to explain techniques in the game were terrible and really made the game feel exceptionally ‘B-grade’.
Never judge a game by its title. What might seem like a safe bet to buy could end up being a waste of money and time. There’s no denying the reputation of the Lord of the Rings franchise, but this game does nothing for it.