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The Lord of the Rings: Return to Moria arrives this fall from publisher North Beach Games and developer Free Range Games.
The title is based on the ending of The Lord of the Rings trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien, when Middle-earth enters its Fourth Age.
The game follows the dwarf Gimli as he returns with the dwarves to the mines of Moria after the events of the trilogy are over. In that sense, this game represents new lore in the Tolkien universe. The companies made the announcement during the Summer Game Fest.
It’s the only survival crafting video game set in the Fourth Age of Middle-earth.
Summoned to the Misty Mountains by Lord Gimli Lockbearer, players take control of a company of Dwarves tasked to reclaim the lost spoils from the Dwarven homeland of Moria—known as Khazad-dûm or Dwarrowdelf—in the depths below their very feet. Their quest will require fortitude, delving deep into the Mines of Moria to recover its treasures.
Set in a procedurally generated Dwarven realm of Moria, no two adventures will be alike, and every expedition is traversable either solo or online with companions. Players can mine to craft greater gear and resources, but beware mining makes noise, and noise created in the quiet deep threatens to awaken the dangers below: where there’s clatter, there’s combat. Excavate the mysteries of three legendary mountains, extract precious metals, scrape to survive, and battle unspeakable forces to learn the secret of the Shadow that lurks within. If you remember, this is where the Orcs and the dreaded Balrog chased and fought with the Fellowship of the Ring.
To survive the treacherous Mines of Moria players must conserve resources, hunt, and gather for food and manage their sleep, temperature, and noise levels. Utilize dynamic light systems for safety and to blaze a path further into the darkness. Battle unspeakable evils and survive hordes of monstrous Orcs in visceral combat, while uncovering the secret of the Shadow that looms within the mountain.
Players will also have to find solace from the darkness. Reveal and clear new locations to create architecture on a grand scale. Get creative and construct bases from scratch or build upon the existing environment.
Players will have to try to restore the long-lost ancient kingdom of Khazad-dûm to its former glory, recovering Dwarven landmarks as the story progresses. They can resurrect old mines and refire their forges to yield their untouched resources.
And they can explore the depths of the Mines of Moria. The procedurally generated environments are abundant with resources and fraught with mystery and danger, providing a unique experience each and every time.
Players can adventure alone or band together with friends in online cooperative multiplayer with up to eight players. And they can craft legendary Dwarven armor, tools, weapons and structures. They can rebuild ancient forges to strengthen, repair and enchant gear. And they can upgrade and unlock new technologies and fantastical machines.
The game will debut in the fall 2023 for Windows PC via the Epic Game Store, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X|S.
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