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Review The Hobbit: Kingdoms
Construct and defend Middle Earth in this fantasy quest hobby
Author: Jay Feldman
Date: 05 Jul 2014, tested on ASUS Nexus 7 (2013)
Quality soundtrack, quality animation, quality game design, exciting game play
Quickly kills your battery, unbalanced difficulty, inconvenient to play on a small screen, impossible to play without paying money
The Hobbit: Kingdoms for Android is one of the most complex and exhaustive RPG quest I've ever seen. It’s a fitting app for such a beloved series of books and folklore.
The Hobbit: Kingdoms aims to be as comprehensive as all J.R.R. Tolkien’s books combined. There is so much going on here that you could play marathon sessions for days and still not scratch the surface. Part of that is because the mythology is so well developed, but it is also a manipulation of design. Like most fantasy style quests, your mission is to play as elves or dwarves. Build your village, recruit soldiers, train them and engage in battles. All that is very familiar, though perhaps no other is as intentionally plodding. You can only build one structure at a time, which blatantly coaxes players to spend money for instant construction. One could spend a small fortune building up the virtual landscape of these mythic lands.
The graphics are actually pretty fantastic. All your favorite characters are here and look like their movie counterparts. The game dances nicely between text and celluloid versions of the story; melding the two into a satisfyingly familiar blend. You can save multiple worlds, but be careful, because that also means multiplying your expense. The upgrades are exhaustive; all the different types of structures, gear, weaponry options; it’s enough to make your head spin.
The game functions well with few hangs. But it certainly uses a lot of resources and strains the battery. The zoom controls are excellent and the presentation is kind of overwhelming. There’s a lot on screen at any given moment. But it’s all laid out surprisingly well given all the options available.
The Hobbit: Kingdoms is a worthy compliment to this literary masterpiece. This game could occupy your time for quite some time, but you’ll continue to pay for that experience or have to exercise supreme patience. Think of this as more of a hobby than a game; building up your fantasy world and fighting for Middle Earth is no small thing. This app is all it should be, given the source material; unfortunately, Gollum is in charge of the purse strings, and he’s as greedy and compulsive as ever. Great game, just pricey if you want to play it to the fullest.