The Lord of the Rings: Gollum (opens in new tab) was announced by Daedalic Entertainment in March 2019, a point I mention to note the fact that, more than three years later, we still don’t know much about it. However, that has finally changed in two different ways today: We have a new game preview (opens in new tab)and an updated September 1 release date.
The Steam (opens in new tab) Gollum’s listing describes it as a “story-based action adventure” about the adventures of JRR Tolkien’s obsessive favorite, set primarily in the same period as the first chapters of the Lord of the Rings books, “from his time as a slave down to Dark Tower for your stay with the Elves of Mirkwood.” Of course, Gollum isn’t a great fighter, so the focus is mostly on stealth and cunning, though opportunistic assassination is never out of the question.
Gollum’s quest for his precious will begin on September 1, 2022! Coming to PC and consoles and later to Nintendo Switch. #GollumGame💍 pic.twitter.com/52IL0kp0oHMay 24, 2022
One of the game’s more unusual aspects is the main character’s “split personality”: “He may be cruel and villainous like Gollum, but social and cautious like Smeagol,” said Daedalic. That seems to extend to the game as well: our man Ted said after his brief preview that “the gameplay is as conflicted as Gollum”, with uninspired stealth bits and potentially good platforming bits.
“After years of existing solely as a name and pre-rendered concept images, Gollum’s first look was torn between visions of an uninspired stealth game and an intriguing throwback platformer,” he wrote. “It’s hard to say which way the final game will lean, but I come away from its public reveal with no enthusiasm for the mix so far.”
To be fair, this is based on just 20 minutes of gameplay, which isn’t enough time to make any sort of final judgment, and we’re hoping that The Lord of the Rings: Gollum will be cooler than expected: something like styx (opens in new tab)maybe, but with less murderous aggression and more psychological problems.