While not on the scale of Jackson's New Zealand epic, TT Games has spent a lot of time ensuring that this LEGO adaptation stays true to the Lord of the Rings franchise. Taking the maps from the original books and fleshing them out into an accurate world, this diddy version of Tolkien's masterpiece isn't lacking when it comes to scope. You'll be able to walk all the way from Hobbiton to Mordor, with plenty of treasure to find on the way.
In contrast to the other LEGO games, secret areas aren't all flagged up with colourful 'use this character' labels. These elements still exist, but there's an emphasis on old-fashioned exploration too. An old, mossy staircase is obscured behind bushes, while a tiny cave leads to some ruins below. Clearly inspired by RPG gaming, LEGO: Lord of the Rings feels like 'My First Skyrim'. Spotting some mountains in the distance and knowing that you can walk over and climb them isn't something we ever expected to see in a LEGO game.
We're told that the world will be full of secret areas, all of which will lead you to new equipment and treasure. Find enough Mithril bricks and you can even forge your own magical items, helping you gain access to the toughest secrets. Need to get to an area with Gimli, but can't make the height without Legolas' jump? Sounds like it's time to create a pair of magic boots.
Access to new areas of the world will be unlocked as you complete story missions, which will be triggered when you reach certain points. Ripping the voice acting straight from the movie sets the dialogue to auto-epic mode, and works surprisingly well in conjunction with the classic tongue-in-cheek LEGO cutscenes. We're also promised sections and characters that didn't make it into the films. Welcome to LEGO, Tom Bombadil. For the first time ever, you might actually fit in.