A new report sheds a lot of light on the canceled Lord of the Rings: The White Council game from EA's Redwood Shores studio.
The detailed report comes courtesy of The Gamer (opens in new tab), and pulls back the curtain on the technology the development team was using to construct the game. "We were using the Sims 3 Simulator - the latest version at that time - to power the NPCs," executive producer Steve Gray says. "It was crazy big and complicated."
"Everything was super, super early, but we had a full Sims-like ecosystem where characters had wants, needs, fears, and so on," explains creative director Chris Tremmel. That fully-fledged character system would extend from the humanoids of the White Council's world, all the way down to creatures like rabbits.
'The game had been in development for roughly two years," Tremmel continues. "The game included basic combat, the area of Framsburg, Horseback, Uruk-Hai, a cave troll, and an entire ecosystem of animals."
The White Council certainly sounds ambitious for a game developed just prior to the start of the Xbox 360 and PS3 lifecycle, which is in part what led to its cancelation after two years of development in 2006. Additionally, The Gamer reports that after the commercial failure of a game based on The Godfather, EA wasn't too keen to splurge money on The White Council, and the plug was pulled on the game's development.
It's a shame that the incredible project never saw the light of day. Now though, Daedalic is carrying forward the torch for The Lord of the Rings-based games, with The Lord of the Rings: Gollum set to launch on next-gen platforms at some point within the next year.
For a list of all the other upcoming games set to launch over the remainder of 2020 and into the next year, you can check out our full new games 2020 guide for more.