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The Lord of the Rings game we're actually excited to play is coming in October

 Return to Moria LOTR survival game
Return to Moria LOTR survival game

Upcoming survival crafting game The Lord of the Rings: Return to Moria has just announced a release date and it's breaking ground pretty soon, it turns out. We'll be delving down into the dwarven homelands starting on October 24.

Return to Moria's director at Free Range games, Jon-Paul Dumont, spoke with IGN at Gamescom today to share more details about the lore and gameplay we'll find in Moria. Unlike other crafting games where you start with basic wood tools, your dwarven experts jump straight into forging and metalworking as you carve through the dark.

Dwarves of Moria
Dwarves of Moria

Moria does have familiar landmarks, Dumont explains, including the Dimrill Gate and Endless Stairs, but all the things between them are procedurally generated. And if you think you've spotted the bridge of Khazad-dûm in past trailers, you're right. Dumont says that one objective in Moria is rebuilding the bridge when Gimli puts out a call summoning dwarves to help reclaim the mines.

As we'd heard a bit about already, sound is a factor in Moria's combat. Making noise by mining will attract orcs and eventually trolls too, forcing players to manage the light and noise they're generating—including dwarven singing.

There's quite a lot about singing, in fact. Joining together with your co-op partners in song can help you mine more efficiently or open up new areas. As someone with a co-op gang that already tends toward a bit of impromptu singalong, I'm quite liking the idea of mining melodies.

Return to Moria will have 8-player co-op available for PC players when it launches on October 24 over on the Epic Games Store for $40.