Mixed or average reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 23
  2. Negative: 4 out of 23
  1. Boasts incredible graphics and audio, but extremely linear gameplay.
  2. The level of detail at work here is darn near unprecedented. [Nov 2002, p.80]
  3. A deep, involving adventure in the land of Middle Earth. However, that adventure was filled with too much yawns to make it a definite stay in my collections.
  4. The game suffers from some repetitive missions with a lot of "fetch this and find that," plus many of the camera angles are finicky.
  5. The game is also pretty short--somewhere in the neighborhood of 8-12 hours to finish, and your desire to replay it will likely be minimal. All of which doesn't sound good, but I enjoyed myself playing through this familiar story.
  6. LOTR's slow-paced gameplay and mission-based structure seems more suited to an action RPG, but as an action adventure it doesn't quite measure up. [Dec 2002, p.137]
  7. All of the pieces were in place, the story, the setting, the characters. All of that potential was wasted though because of lack of detail and poor control and A.I.
  8. The die-hard Tolkien will get a kick out of slugging and spell-casting their way through the first book of the Rings trilogy, but the casual gamer will only be disappointed by an otherwise generic action / adventure title.
  9. 67
    The game's lack of focus, sub-par AI, and unbalanced gameplay make the game mediocre at best.
  10. There is an initial rush and glimpse of Tolkien's novel in the early going. The ensuing action lacks punch and never arcs to a point to make any of the combat substantial.
  11. 60
    Fails to delivery compelling gameplay.
  12. 60
    There is a feeling of respect for the source material present in the Xbox Fellowship that is lacking in the PS2 version. Still, the heavily flawed combat drags this title down to a great degree, effectively making about half the game into more a chore than anything else.
  13. 58
    With a long-winded (yet basic) story and frustrating combat, the game just tends to drag on a little too much. [Dec 2002, p.63]
  14. A big problem I’ve had with the game is load times. You can walk across large plots of land with no slowdown whatsoever. But enter a house, and be prepared to sit for a while waiting for the game to load.
  15. Ultimately an average game at its best and a frustrating and boring one at its worst. It's also exceedingly short.
  16. 57
    The AI and combat was the first street to the road to nowhere. The second biggest flaw was the straight-edged linear gameplay.
  17. This game is so bug-filled, I can’t believe they had the audacity to retail this game in its present state of disarray.
  18. What's disappointing is that Lord of the Rings is not really that great at getting you into the action.
  19. If you can live with all the problems, irritations and lack of inspiring gameplay, there’s actually a reasonably big game locked away. Real, hardcore Tolkien nuts, who live and breath the man’s work, may get something out of this.
  20. This game is a rushed, slapdash effort intended to prey on unsuspecting consumers. [Dec 2002, p.250]
  21. For an Xbox game, Fellowship Of The Ring sure does take a long time to load.
  22. If there was any truth in advertising, Universal would hawk this game as "Lord of the Pointless Fetch Quest" and recommend that potential buyers seek the Fellowship of Many Beers to dull the pain. [Winter 2002, p.103]

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