EA Places LotR: The White Council Project on Hold

Last July, EA announced plans for developing the next Lord of the Rings game; an RPG title under the name of The Lord of the Rings: The White Council. At the time, EA had high hopes for the game and stated, "With its next generation gameplay and epic new storyline, we think The Lord of the Rings: The White Council will be a huge success." However, these plans have been suddenly halted as Electronic Arts has declared that the game is no longer in development.

EA’s CFO, Warren Jenson, said in an investor post-earnings call, "The Lord of the Rings product is back in development in terms of being on hold." The unusual statement, while not directly admitting that the game project was cancelled, confirmed rumors from earlier this year that the title was in trouble. Jenson further stated that EA was reevaluating the franchise and is "looking at the creative positioning and feature set on the Lord of the Rings franchise."

The Lord of the Rings franchise has been a successful one for EA, but LotR film director Peter Jackson has voiced complaints in the past that the mega game publisher made very little effort to consult with him on the development process of the LotR games. Jackson’s manager said in 2005, "Electronic Arts was not interested in input from the filmmaker," and that Jackson "chafed at his dealings with the industry heavyweight."

At that time, Jackson snubbed EA and announced that he was going to Ubisoft, instead of EA, for the development of the tie-in game to Jackson’s blockbuster movie King Kong. It seemed readily apparent that the was move was due to the strained relations he had with EA in the game development process.


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Author: GamerNode Staff View all posts by

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