Once again, Amazon is venturing into the realm of Middle-earth by developing a Lord of the Rings MMO.

New World studio is set to create a game based on The Hobbit and the book trilogy of The Lord of the Rings, following the cancellation of their previous attempt.

Amazon Games has announced its plans to develop a new massively multiplayer online game (MMO) based on The Lord of the Rings. The project will be led by New World studio Amazon Games Orange County. This comes as a fresh attempt, separate from a previous Lord of the Rings MMO project that was canceled by Amazon in 2021.

The upcoming game will be an open-world MMO adventure set in the enchanting realm of Middle-earth, featuring the beloved tales from The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy. While the game is still in its early stages of development and expected to take several years, it will be available on both PC and consoles. Further details about the game are yet to be disclosed.

To publish the game, Amazon entered into an agreement with Middle-earth Enterprises, the rights holder of The Lord of the Rings franchise, which was recently acquired by the Swedish conglomerate Embracer Group. It’s important to note that Amazon holds the TV rights to J.R.R. Tolkien’s works, but not the rights to the core Lord of the Rings texts, which is why its Prime Video series, The Rings of Power, is set in a different time period.

This collaboration between Amazon and Embracer is part of a broader strategy to expand into multimedia entertainment franchises. Reports suggest that Amazon plans to develop a Tomb Raider TV show and movie, as well as partner with Crystal Dynamics studio to create a new game in the Tomb Raider series. Embracer acquired Crystal Dynamics and the Tomb Raider rights from Square Enix, recognizing Amazon as the ideal partner to transform Lara Croft into a global multimedia franchise.

While Amazon’s Lord of the Rings MMO is not the first of its kind, following the launch of The Lord of the Rings Online in 2007, it still holds promise. Amazon has a favorable track record in the MMO space with successful releases like New World and the Western version of Lost Ark. However, it’s worth noting that adapting licensed properties into the MMO genre can be challenging.

Embracer, on the other hand, has multiple Tolkien-based game projects in progress. The company expects to release five Lord of the Rings games within the next two years, including titles such as Gollum and EA’s mobile game Heroes of Middle-earth, further expanding the interactive gaming experiences set in Tolkien’s rich universe.

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