One wonders if J.R.R. Tolkien knew how much his books would influence popular culture. He certainly could not foresee all of the television shows, books, movies and video games that would come about when he published The Hobbit in 1937 or The Lord of the Rings in 1954. Besides influencing most fantasy works that came after it, his novels have also spawned quite a few other properties that came after it.
One of the most notable right now is The Rings of Power series currently featured on Amazon Prime. That series is set thousands of years before the events of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, and is an epic drama with a unique cast of characters, both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared re-emergence of evil to Middle-earth. A new episode is released every week.
For video games, Lord of the Rings has a rich history. The Lord of the Rings Online role-playing game has been courting players since 2012. Although the game recently went free-to-play, which is almost never a good sign for an MMORPG, the community has stuck with the game and it has over 16,000 very positive reviews on Steam, where it is also currently available.
There are also many other ways to experience Lord of the Rings in gaming. The LEGO company added a LEGO version of Lord of the Rings to their rich history of LEGO based titles. Many people who play all the games in that series, and there are quite a lot, have said that the Lord of the Rings title is the best of the bunch. It’s a true open world game, with access to a lot of characters from the books, movies and shows. And for those that enjoy putting a little bit of real coin on the line, many of the world’s most famous online casinos offer high fantasy-themed slots that perfectly fit the Lord of the Rings flavor.
Those looking for an even more intimate take on Lord of the Rings should look no further than the soon to be released Free League Publishing Lord of the Rings Roleplaying game, which has been created to work with the popular fifth edition D&D ruleset. The new RPG has it all, packed into a 236-page, beautifully designed and illustrated hardback volume that contains what players need to create 5E adventures set in the world’s most popular fantasy setting: six original heroic cultures from the land of Eriador, six new classes, a host of terrifying adversaries, and comprehensive rules for journeys, councils, wondrous artefacts, and the subtle magic of Middle-earth.
The complementary Shire Adventures book is a 104-page hardback volume that describes the Shire in great detail, as well as five short adventures and seven pre-generated characters, including famous Bagginses, Tooks, and Brandybucks. The contents of Shire Adventures are adapted from the Starter Set for The One Ring RPG.
The RPG game has already won some awards, including one for having the best internal artwork. For example, The One Ring Roleplaying Game won a Gold ENNIE for Best Interior Art in 2022.
The official retail release of both works is planned for Q1 2023, but the pre-order in the Free League webshop gives immediate access to complete PDFs of both volumes. A Loremaster’s Screen with a compendium about Rivendell, including a map of the valley and a plan of the house itself, is also available.
The new edition of The One Ring RPG, set in the world of The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien and designed by Francesco Nepitello and Marco Maggi, became the most successful tabletop roleplaying core game ever on Kickstarter in March 2021. Now Middle-earth is open for new role-players with a brand new 5E adaptation.