Blocky Balrogs: Lego Lord Of The Rings Has “That Line”


Legos have come a long way since I was but a naive youth who could still play with colorful blocks and not fear the judgmental scorn of my peers. Back then, I’d crack open a fresh bucket and let my unbridled child imagination craft epic dreamscapes that… well, they mostly ended up looking like boxes. Sometimes I put wheels on them. OK, so maybe what I imagined didn’t quite end up sticking the landing in reality. Lego Lord Of The Rings, on the other hand, looks pretty much a perfect reproduction of Peter Jackson’s take on Tolkien’s genre-birthing opus – except that Vigo Mortensen’s rugged handsomeness is slightly diminished by the transition into pudgy-block-person-hood.

Cave trolls! Balrogs! Gandalf screaming a line so thoroughly embedded in our cultural subconscious that it’s only rivaled by “second breakfast” as the most memorable phrase in all of human history! I am impressed, though, by how much Traveler’s Tales has been diversifying the Lego series as of late. Batman had its gigantic open world, Indiana Jones introduced a pretty robust level builder, and now Lord of the Rings seems to be managing a scale of battle completely unlike anything its increasingly stranger bedfellows have pulled off.

I must admit, however, that I’m still pretty burnt-out on Lord of the Rings’ central plot beats. I mean, I’m excited to see them re-imagined with Lego’s trademark humor (and this trailer managed that in very promising fashion), but this franchise has spent ages in the spotlight. If nothing else, The Hobbit will give us a different story in that universe for everyone to merchandise-ify and reference for years to come, so that’s something, I suppose. But still, I’m having trouble mustering much Tolk-a-mania these days. Oh well.


  1. Swabbleflange says:

    I’ve found the LEGO games to be quite like Pokemon in that if you play one to completion… that’s kind of all the LEGO game you need. Mine was Indy 1, and my enthusiasm for that led me to try all the others to varying degrees of interest (put quite a lot into Star Wars), but really by the time Batman 2 came along I was done. LotR is the only thing that would draw me back to put serious effort in, but we’ll see.

    • Eophasmus says:

      I enjoyed the Lego Star Wars demo and bought the full Star Wars collection, but it just became tedious after a while and it now sits on my dusty ‘not installed’ Steam shelf. I like the idea of a LotR one, but I doubt I’d complete it any more than I did Star Wars.

    • mechabuddha says:

      See, I like the completion aspect of the games. I’ve beaten every single of these LEGO games to 100% completion save for Indy 2. Of course, I’ve also beaten multiple Pokemon games. So there’s that, too.

    • Tom De Roeck says:

      LEGO SW Episode 3 was well worth it, though.

  2. AmateurScience says:

    I do wish more publishers would pay attention to how the Lego games go about doing a movie tie-in.

  3. GallonOfAlan says:

    A 12 cert for a LEGO game ?

  4. LukeNukem says:

    I can’t believe that I am the first person to say this, but: Legos?

    • sinister agent says:

      Hook, line, and sinker. What was that, fourth comment? Fifth? Who had fifth?

    • dazman76 says:

      Everyone was basically waiting for you to go there :) I think the Grayson may have done it deliberately, as I’m sure he read the comments from the last time he did it. Bad Grayson. Baaaaaaaaaad Grayson.

      • LukeNukem says:


        • dazman76 says:

          Don’t feel too bad about it – I was literally about to click on the Reply button myself, and just dragged myself back from the edge :) lol

      • Ergates_Antius says:

        The fact it was the very first word in the article kind of flagged it as that.

      • warthog2k says:

        RPS – a game masquerading as a website :D

    • DyingTickles says:

      Calling them Legos is a U.S. thing. Saying Lego or Lego blocks just sounds…weird.

    • uncannychuckles says:

      The ‘s’ is plural. Nobody played with just one Lego block.

      • Peptidix says:

        It is your language, and you can maul it like you want. Everyone I knew played with Lego, the system of blocks and imagination so great it did not need a plural.

        • AgamemnonV2 says:

          Ah, yes, because language never evolves.

          Gerád sy sé weorclic út for ðu?

      • rb2610 says:

        I’ve seen more than one sheep in a field, doesn’t mean they’re called ‘sheeps’…

        • AgamemnonV2 says:

          Have you seen more than one Band-Aid? What do you call that?

  5. kwyjibo says:

    “That line” is “One does not simply walk into Mordor”.

    It is not in the trailer.

    • Rao Dao Zao says:

      One does not simply fixate on the wrong line into Mordor?

    • Bhazor says:

      “This is not the line you are looking for”

    • NathanH says:

      Sounds like orc-mischief to me.

    • Aedrill says:

      Line you quoted is a fucking tedious meme. “Thou shall not pass” is Tolkien at his best. This is the first time you see Gandalf as really powerful, strong being. It’s the time when shit gets serious, when the real adventure begins.

      • adonf says:

        Oh thanks, I had a hard time figuring out what line Nathan was referring to. Maybe because this line is more whispered than it is screamed.

        • MadTinkerer says:

          For me, “that line” is They’re taking the hobbits to Isengard!

          The hobbits the hobbits the hobbits, To Isengard! To Isengard! The hobbits the hobbits the hobbits, To Isengard! To Isengard! The hobbits the hobbits the hobbits, To Isengard! To Isengard! They’re taking the hobbits to Isengard! Isen-g-g-g-gard!

      • Unholymess says:

        it’s actually “You cannot pass” in the books. “You shall not pass” is the inexplicably widespread misquote of the original that Peter Jackson included in the film just after Gandalf says the correct line from the book, presumably as a nod to how widely misquoted it is.

  6. caddyB says:

    LEGOlas eh.

  7. Ian says:

    I shire hope this is a good game.

  8. Wang Tang says:

    The last scene made me literally lol :D
    This will be the first LEGO game I’ll be getting after SW.

  9. Freud says:

    Didn’t these games use to be more legoish?

  10. aircool says:

    Rocks, Papers Shotguns

    Blocksy Balrogsss: LEGO Lords Ofs Thes Ringss Hass “sThast Lines”s


  11. JD Ogre says:

    Ewww. Talking minifigs in a licensed LEGO game. :( No buy.

    • GallonOfAlan says:

      They were talking in LEGO Batman 2. It was MUCH BETTER.

    • FionaSarah says:

      On one hand, I feel like they have taken away a lot of why I love TT’s LEGO games. On the other hand, I’m such a huge whore for them…

    • Bluefox says:

      Thank you! I’m not alone in liking the days when minifigs didn’t talk.

      I still go back and play Lego Star Wars now and again, and I think I’m more amused by the silent antics than ….

      Hmmm. I just realized. I’m *old*. This is the exact same comment a person in the 1920’s would have made about talking movies, and how much better Buster Keaton is than Laurel & Hardy or those Stooges.

      I’ll just be over here, rethinking everything I purport to believe in.

  12. Chris D says:

    It’s a little known fact that, after all the business in Middle Earth was concluded, Gandalf switched careers several times and now works as a driving examiner. I failed my test twenty eight times thanks to that son of a bitch.

  13. Creeping Death says:

    “I must admit, however, that I’m still pretty burnt-out on Lord of the Rings’ central plot beats. ”

    I make a point of reading through the novels once a year, so I’m always up for another run through in one format or another ^^ The trailer made me genuinely laugh, something a lego game hasn’t made me do since the Stars Wars releases. That coupled with seeing some of the awesome lego sets in store over the weekend has me really excited for this :P

  14. adonf says:

    The devs obviously never read the book. Frodo is not the hero in LOTR.

  15. Tei says:

    Sauron is a minion of the “god” of industry. So why he don’t use steampunk weapons? If LOTR where written properly, the orks woul use mechs, and giganteous cannons to destroy the elf and human cities. Hell, a “Big Berta” would destroy Mines Tirith from distance.
    The only use of technology I remember is the explosive in Abism of Helm.

    Sauron fail.

  16. CrookedLittleVein says:

    Will there be man flesh?

    Enquiring minds want to know.

  17. Snids says:

    Other than the little lego mans, there is no lego in this game.

  18. e1zorro says:

    *removed* someone beat me to it

  19. Noodle says:

    It’s still the wrong line though! Tolkien wrote “You cannot pass!” in the book, and Jackson changed it. God knows why because ‘cannot’ flows better, it’s much more badass.

  20. Tuor says:

    Balrog’s have no (physical) wings.

    That is all. :P

  21. Jackablade says:

    I’m still a little iffy about this talking Lego business. It was passable in the Batman game because they were telling their own story and dialogue is a little more necessary to get all the information across, but everyone knows Lord of the Rings so there shouldn’t be any problem with the characters just miming out the scenes as they’ve done previously. I dare say it’d be considerably easier to follow than some of the Harry Potters.

    • syndicatedragon says:

      I totally agree. The “talkies” lose a lot of the charm of the games being LEGO in the first place.

  22. hosndosn says:

    I never understood the appeal of Lego games (which seems to go beyond just targeting 8 year old boys). Lego, to me, is about building. Closer to Minecraft creative mode than any action game. What they do is essentially use it as an animation style (which barely makes sense since the Lego figurines can only move on 5 hinges). Meanwhile, the rest of the game is a generic 3rd person action platformer wallowing in whatever clichés the expensive license provides.

    Do I have to find that cute? Because, to me, it seems like nothing but a clumsy marketing mishmash.


  23. jimzhang says:

    The Lord of the Rings~~~oh, yeah~~it’s a wonderful film,anyone who isn’t like it? I will say no !!
    Especially The Lord of the Rings costume,very cool~~~

  24. starmade says:

    It would be more original if everything in these Lego games was actually made of lego blocks.

  25. corinoco says:

    You got the first words wrong. Lego is both singular and plural. I thought only Merkins said “Legos” or even worse “legos” – its a trademark, it has a capital.

    Like the word ‘fruit’ – singular and plural, although ‘fruits’ is correct if you are referring to multiple varieties. ‘Lego sets’ is the correct term for plural varieties of Lego.

    Here are some examples:

    I have lots of Lego.

    I have lots of Lego sets.

    I trod on a piece of Lego.

    My cat likes to steal my Lego; he runs off with Lego pieces.

    See? It’s very simple, like most parts of the English language.

    Now write it out 100 times before morning or we’ll cut your mouse cord off.