To do this, sneak around, stick to the shadows, look for routes that remain undetected, and climb here and there. Sneak, climb, jump and run on the wall to avoid enemies-that’s the goal of this game and you may even solve environmental puzzles.The level I saw was huge and there was plenty of vertical space to cross. Lava pits were scattered at the bottom of the underground area, rock walls reached the base of the tower, and many wooden scaffolds crossed. Developers say that all levels are equally extensible and that there are multiple paths through each level. Some routes are more stealth oriented, while others emphasize the platform.
The demo primarily featured a platform, with Gollum climbing walls, shimmy along the shelves, swinging from poles, and jumping over pits. Traversal reminded me of Assassin’s Creed or Uncharted games.
Despite its focus on stealth and platforms, combat isn’t entirely out of the question here. If you’re sneaky, you can manage your stealth skills. At some point during the demonstration, Gollum had to go through a lonely orc, so Gollum sneaked behind him, flipped his back, struggled a bit, and then quietly knocked him down.But things don’t always go smoothly. Everything you do makes some noise, and the enemy is always listening. At some point, the enemy heard Gollum and warned other orcs nearby to come and look for him. He hurried away and hung from the shelf until the problem was blown away (classical Gollum).
To help you stay alive, Gollum has the ability to “see” where the sound comes from. This “sound vision” wasn’t available in the build used in the demo, but the developers say it will play an important role in the final game.
It’s a story-driven game, so when you reach different points, the cutscenes play. At the level I saw, Gollum meets a chunky prisoner named Glaschneg and releases him. Grashneg will accompany you for a while and help our brave heroes do things they can’t do, such as breaking through heavy obstacles to reach new paths.Gollum speaks to himself outside the cutscene, even when he is alone. For example, when you come to a room with guards, he says, “Too many orcs. I hate orcs,” or calls a distant door that you need to reach. His voice is similar to Andy Serkis’ performance in the movie, but is clearly processed by another actor here.
Like the source material, Gollum has a split personality that acts on the choices the player needs to make. If you want to lean on the Gollum side, you can choose to do harm to others but help you. If you feel more humane, you can choose a moral path in favor of his smear gollum part.
No other familiar characters appeared in the demo, but the developers have promised to meet “very famous characters”, including Gandalf. As the developers suggest, if you’re familiar with source materials, you can also guess some of the other characters you’ll encounter while traveling.
Ring Story: Gollum isn’t the vast open-world action RPG you might be expecting, but it certainly seems to suit Gollum’s character. When you think about it, it is also attractive to secretly parkour in Middle-earth.
Chris Reed is IGN’s commerce editor. You can follow him on Twitter @_chrislreed..