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Lord of the Rings - Fellowship of the Ring

Game Boy Advance players get a treat with The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. The game is gorgeous. That is, when it runs properly.

By now, anyone who doesn't know at least the basic story of Lord of the Rings must be living in a cave. Hobbits. A Ring. A Quest to Take the Ring to Safety. Evil Riders. This game has them all.

The graphics are really pretty stunning. The little Hobbiton village, the forests, it all gives you a real sense that you're in Tolkein's world, interacting with the characters. Combat is simple turn-based stuff. You do a lot of message-delivering and mushroom-gathering.

Now, for the bad part. First, the game is very directional. You must get Item A from Spot 1 to Spot 2. Receive a coin. Take a message over to Person C. Get a cabbage. You gather a few coins by raiding your friends' homes and then steal their crops! Not very nice.

And when you've found these few items, you're stuck. There's no way to find more. If you want a third dagger for your party, sorry, the vendor only had 1. If you want to kill more Big Dogs to get your characters better at fighting, nope, you killed the only Dogs in Town. You roam the area looking for more things to do, but you are forced to trudge along to the next area.

Which leads to the REALLY bad part. Just about every single person I've talked to about this game has complained of severe crashing problems. The Mines of Moria are particularly notorious for crashing a lot, but crashes happen elsewhere as well. A crash can easily destroy hours of very tedious back-and-forth plodding.

A good game to borrow from a friend to see if it's your type of game, but be prepared to save early, save often as you get into it a bit.

Buy Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring from Amazon

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