Lord Of The Rings Is About To Be Exploited By Embracer Game Company

Embracer plans to turn The Lord of the Rings IP into a massive gaming franchise.

By Jason Collins | Updated

Embracer Group, a company that’s slowly buying its way into becoming one of the largest conglomerates in gaming, recently stated that it’s going to explore its Lord of the Rings IP in a different fashion and turn it into one of the biggest gaming franchises in the world. This statement came out right after the company’s $2 billion deal had gone awry and after Gollum turned out to be a major disappointment.

According to Kotaku, Embracer Group just announced, in the midst of a massive internal restructuring and studio shut down, that it plans to “exploit” its recently purchased Lord of the Rings license and turn it into one of the biggest gaming franchises. For context, Embracer spent $700 million on the rights to Lord of the Rings, and the franchise itself has some pretty great games.

These titles include the Battle for Middle-earth series, the Shadow of Mordor, and its sequel Shadow of War games, but also some horrible releases, such as the previously mentioned Gollum.

The news of Embracer “exploiting” Lord of the Rings might be good for the game-loving fans of Tolkien’s work. The universe is massive, and it has plenty of narrative for gaming adaptation or further in-canon development.

However, it’s also important to remember that slapping a high-profile IP sticker on a game doesn’t actually make it good—as seen with Gollum and Marvel’s Avengers—so perhaps Embracer should focus more on the quality of its releases rather than quantity. But their decision isn’t unfounded.

lord of the rings gollum
Embracer’s Gollum game

Before Lord of the Rings, Embracer acquired more than 12 major entertainment studios, including THQ Nordic, Saber Interactive, Crystal Dynamics|Eidos Montreal, and many other gaming studios, all of which worked on their own projects—some of which are, at least according to Embracer, a waste of resources.

So, following the cancellation of a $2 billion mystery deal the company was supposed to conclude, Embracer decided to restructure and consolidate its holding, cut costs, and increase efficiency.

Embracer Group’s decision to consolidate and further exploit the Lord of the Rings IP to make more games is actually very sound. Sure, we’d like to see the new Legacy of Kain game—especially after the company expressed interest in making it—but IPs such as Lord of the Rings and Tomb Raider are simply better represented among the gaming audience than Legacy of Kain.

This means a better return on investment, which is a goal of any business, even game-making. So, those titles clearly deserve better resource allocation than less-known franchises.

It’s also important to say that while Embracer expressed their plans to focus more on Lord of the Rings, all announced gaming titles still in development aren’t likely to be canceled or suspended. This includes the much-anticipated Warhammer 40K: Space Marine 2, which, unfortunately, still doesn’t have a release date, and the troubled remake of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, which should have been released by now.

Crystal Dynamics, a part of Embracer Group, is also working with other gaming companies, so we know Tomb Raider isn’t affected by the restructuring either.