The Lord of the Rings: The Third Age is an epic role-playing game (RPG) released in 2003, developed by EA Redwood Shores and published by Electronic Arts. Set in the rich and beloved world of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth, the game aimed to provide players with an immersive experience filled with adventure, exploration, and epic battles. As a fan of both the Lord of the Rings franchise and RPGs.

Bringing back memories of playing this game with my dad, The Third Age holds up perfectly and is *spoiler alert* the best Lord of the Rings game ever.

Story and Lore

As a companion to the events of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Third Age weaves an original story that intersects with key moments from the books and films. Players assume the roles of new characters, members of the “fellowship” who embark on their own quest to aid the heroes of the trilogy in their fight against Sauron.

While the story occasionally takes liberties with Tolkien’s lore, it remains faithful to the spirit of the source material, capturing the epic scope and moral complexity of Middle-earth. Fans of the franchise will appreciate the nods to familiar characters, locations, and events scattered throughout the game. You also get to have a strange fight against the Eye of Sauron itself.

Graphics and Sound

Visually, The Third Age impresses with its detailed environments, character models, and cinematic cutscenes. The landscapes of Middle-earth are beautifully rendered, from the peaceful tranquility of the Shire to the dark and foreboding depths of Moria. Character animations are smooth and fluid, bringing the heroes and villains of Tolkien’s world to life on screen.

The sound design is equally impressive, with a sweeping orchestral score that captures the grandeur and majesty of Middle-earth. From the stirring melodies of the main theme to the ambient sounds of battle and exploration, the music enhances the immersion and atmosphere of the game. Voice acting is generally well-done, with actors delivering convincing performances that help to flesh out the game’s characters and story.


The Third Age follows the classic RPG formula, with players controlling a party of characters as they embark on a quest to thwart the forces of evil threatening Middle-earth. The game features a turn-based combat system, allowing players to strategically plan their actions in battle. Each character has unique abilities and skills that can be upgraded as they level up, adding depth and customisation to the gameplay.

One of the most innovative aspects of The Third Age is its “party assist” feature, which allows players to call upon iconic characters from the Lord of the Rings trilogy to aid them in battle. These guest characters, including Gandalf, Aragorn, and Legolas, bring their own special abilities and can turn the tide of difficult encounters.

Outside of combat, the game offers a variety of side quests, mini-games, and exploration opportunities to keep players engaged. From solving puzzles in ancient ruins to forging alliances with the peoples of Middle-earth, there’s always something to do beyond the main quest.


With its branching paths, multiple endings, and deep character customization options, The Third Age offers ample replay value. Players can experiment with different party compositions, play styles, and dialogue choices, ensuring that each play-through feels fresh and unique. Additionally, the game’s challenging difficulty levels and optional side quests provide plenty of incentives for repeated exploration of Middle-earth.


In conclusion, The Lord of the Rings: The Third Age is by far the best Lord of the Rings game ever. An absolute must-play for fans of both RPGs and the Lord of the Rings franchise. With its stunning visuals, engaging gameplay, and faithful adaptation of Tolkien’s world, the game offers an unforgettable journey through Middle-earth. Whether you’re a veteran of the series or a newcomer to Tolkien’s universe, The Third Age promises hours of adventure, excitement, and immersion in one of fantasy literature’s most beloved settings.

One Ring Rating-Breaks the scale


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