In 2019, Amazon announced it was developing a massively multiplayer online game (MMO) set in Middle-earth. Two years later, the project was cancelled. Now, Amazon has announced it will be making a Lord of the Rings MMO after all.
Last year, a video games holding company called Embracer Group acquired the IP rights to The Lord of the Rings franchise. Amazon has partnered with Embracer Group to make this new game. It will be developed by Amazon Games’ studio in Orange County, California.
The Orange Country studio is best known for making the MMO New World, which has concerned some Lord of the Rings fans. As popular TikToker @DonMarkshall72 discussed, New World was incredibly popular upon release, with almost a million players. However, its 30-day average at the time of this writing, according to Steam Charts, is just over 15,000 players.
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Amazon Games CEO Christoph Hartmann spoke to IGN about how the developer intends to learn from their experience making New World. He noted that Amazon Games wasn’t prepared for the game’s sudden popularity, saying: “you cannot just prepare for launch, you need to literally prepare for the two years after.”
However, Hartmann also praised their initial success with New World, considering how new Amazon Games was. “How many studios do you know who… with a new IP, with a completely new team, and their own tech, that actually made a game that big?” he said.
For now, the new Lord of the Rings game is untitled and without a release date; it’s still in early development. If you’re already itching to play, you can try out the MMO that already exists: The Lord of the Rings Online.