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What the first Gollum trailer tells us about the next Lord of the Rings game

The first trailer for The Lord of the Rings: Gollum is here and it’s a teaser in every sense of the word. Our first look at the Tolkien-based outing from Daedalic Entertainment lifts the lid on just a little of the mystery behind the title announced way back in March 2019.

The first thing to note is the setting for the short teaser – we’re going back to Mordor, folks. Mount Doom and the Dark Tower of Barad-dûr with the burning Eye of Sauron are still standing in this timeline.

The trailer begins by panning across a cave littered with fish remnants, and adorned with caveman-style drawings. One of which is of two characters, perhaps the Smeagol and Gollum alter egos, or maybe even Smeagol and his old mate Deagol, whom the hobbit-like creature murdered to originally take possession of the One Ring.

We also see a cave drawing of a creature, presumably Gollum on all-fours crawling towards the sun and further unintelligible scrawling. When we meet Gollum, he’s slithering out of the cave to overlook the terrifying sight of an erupting Mount Doom and Barad-dûr in the background.

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The trailer closes with Gollum saying his own name in that familiar cough and splutter. The animation reveals this is very much Gollum as he was depicted in the Peter Jackson films and the voice itself sounds very similar to Andy Serkis’ iconic portrayal.

 

Unfortunately, the trailer tells us little else about what to expect from the game. We know it’s going to be a stealth adventure game – Gollum has never been much good in a fight – but little else about the story.

From the books and movies we know Gollum has spent plenty of time in Mordor before he led Frodo and Sam there. We know that as the ring bearer he dwelled deep in the Misty Mountains before losing the ring to Bilbo Baggins.

We know that after Sauron declared himself to have returned, Gollum made for Mordor where he lived for many years. There he met the giant spider Shelob, before he was caught by Sauron’s servants and interrogated and tortured. We can assume that the game takes place prior to that capture, and prior to Frodo taking possession of the ring in The Shire.

We’re not sure what errand Gollum is pursuing in Mordor, but he abandoned his quest to find Bilbo and was drawn there by the Dark Power, as we hear from Gandalf in the Fellowship of the Ring book: “Mordor draws all wicked things, and the Dark Power was bending all its will to gather them there.”

We know little about his quest, but it’ll likely involve his relationship with Shelob and his dealings with the orcs and various other species of evil in Mordor. It’s not clear whether Mordor will be the game’s only locale, or whether we’ll join the creature on any of his other outings during his many centuries roaming Middle-Earth.

The Lord of the Rings: Gollum will but launch sometime in 2021 for PS5, Xbox Series X and PC. Hopefully we’ll get a gameplay trailer soon.

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