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The Lord of the Rings MMO: Everything We Know



J.R.R. Tolkien's literary haven is about to receive a few additional chapters, with Amazon Games, Embracer Group, and Middle-Earth Enterprises all signing an agreement to deliver an all-new open-world MMO. And guess what? It's coming to consoles and PC, which means you can already put it one step above Standing Stone Games' 2007 PC exclusive, The Lord of the Rings Online. Question is, with both games revolving around Tolkien's beloved anthology, how will Amazon Games one-up what its competition has spent the best part of fifteen years developing?

“We’re committed to bringing players high-quality games, whether through original IPs or long-beloved ones like The Lord of the Rings,” said Christoph Hartmann, VP, Amazon Games. “Bringing players a fresh take on The Lord of the Rings has long been an aspiration for our team, and we’re honored and grateful that Middle-earth Enterprises is entrusting us with this iconic world.

So, with all of that out of the way, what more do you really need to know about it? Will it entwine with The Hobbit or Rings of Power sagas, or will it feature a completely separate story arc altogether? Well, here's everything we've been able to gather on the matter since first hearing of it. The Lord of the Rings MMO: what is it, and how will it pay respects to one of the most universally cherished fantasy franchises on the planet?

What Is The Lord of the Rings MMO?

To set the record straight, Amazon Games has yet to properly title the upcoming game. And so, while we can slot it under a placeholder of sorts, we can't say for certain what the MMO will be called. And we probably won't for a fair while either, as the devs have only recently confirmed that the project is still in its early production phase. Nevertheless, it's happening, and if what its creators are saying is true, then it'll “do justice to the expansive Middle-earth universe.” Cue the sigh of relief.

“The world of Middle-earth continues to prove an endlessly fertile ground for creators, and Amazon Games has a passion for building immersive, compelling worlds and publishing games for a global audience”, said Lee Guinchard, CEO of Freemode. “We have the clear ambition to create the highest-quality entertainment products for this IP, whether we utilize internal resources or team up with the best industry partners that complement our capabilities. We’re taking every care to deliver an MMO which will do justice to the expansive Middle-earth univers and delight players around the world.”


According to the elevator pitch, the upcoming MMO will feature “the beloved stories of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings literary trilogy.” Going by this, we can safely say that the time period in the game, like The Lord of the Rings Online, will take place between the years 2941, and 3019—the former being the years of Bilbo's expedition in The Hobbit, and the latter being the end of the War of the Ring.

While we can't say for sure how your character will tie in with the events depicted in either trilogy, we can say that you'll have the opportunity to explore a pretty convincing replica of Middle-earth. So, if you've brushed up on your reading, then you'll already have a vague idea of what to expect from the upcoming MMO. And while the finer details are incredibly scarce right now, we can certainly expect to see another thread of information on the narrative before year's end.


It's an MMORPG, so expect plenty of real-time combat, character customization, and open-world exploration. Outside of that, it's far too early to say what other core gameplay features the MMO will adopt. If it's to follow in a similar fashion to The Lord of the Rings Online, of course, then it's bound to have numerous quests, expansions, and intricate progression systems. Again, this is based on speculation, so take it all with a grain of salt.


The Lord of the Rings MMO is being headed up by Amazon Games Orange County, the same team that built the popular open world MMO New World. According to them, the game will be shaping up for an eventual console and PC launch at some point in the distant future. So, don't expect to see it arrive on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, or Switch anytime soon.

Of course, this isn't the first time Amazon Games has tried to establish the groundwork for a Lord of the Rings MMO. Notably, the studio tried to deliver a similar product back in 2019 with Athlon Games and Leyou—the latter being the reason for its eventual demise. With parent company Tencent struggling to reach an agreement with Amazon, the project, in spite of its global interest, found the back of the shelves. In short, 2023 will look to revive that spark that Tencent stubbed out several years ago.


As we're still a few years off yet, it's understandable that Amazon Games has yet to publish any footage or in-game screenshots of the MMO. If we're lucky, then we'll get a slight glimpse of the project at some point later this year, or maybe even in early 2024. Probably best not to put all your eggs in one basket, though.

Release Date, Platforms & Editions

It's early days yet, so don't expect to see The Lord of the Rings MMO for a fair while. If we had to put a pin on it, though, then we'd wager a rough 2026 launch at the earliest. And that's being overcautious, as anyone who's ever built or so much as played an MMO will know that these things take time — and Amazon Games announcing that it's still in its early production state leads us to believe that it's a good few years away, give or take.

On a separate note, Amazon Games has yet to confirm whether or not the IP will be free-to-play or on a P2P model. Chances are, with it being an MMO, then it'll feature a monthly or annual subscription of some sort. But don't quote us on that, though.

If you're interested in keeping tabs on the upcoming MMO, then be sure to check in with Amazon Games' official social feed for more updates here. Should Amazon Games Orange County shed any light on the game's launch date, then we'll be sure to fill you in on all the key details right here on


So, what's your take? Will you be picking up a copy of The Lord of the Rings MMO when it drops? Let us know your thoughts over on our socials here.

Jord is acting Team Leader at If he isn't blabbering on in his daily listicles, then he's probably out writing fantasy novels or scraping Game Pass of all its slept on indies.