Artwork for the One Ring from Lord of the Rings

It seems like Amazon just can't catch a break when it comes to video game development. New World has been pushed back time and time again, the team-based shooter Crucible was shut down just recently, and now it looks like the upcoming Lord of the Rings MMORPG is no more.

As for the reason for the cancellation, that's where things get interesting. The Lord of the Rings MMORPG was being developed by Amazon Games Studios and the China-based Leyou Technologies, the latter of which ended up getting purchased by Tencent in late 2020. While the details get a little bit murky here, it seems that there was a major disagreement between the companies on how to proceed, and so the whole project eventually ended up getting shut down.

Whether the project will be resurrected in a different form, perhaps without the Lord of the Rings license, nobody currently knows. Personally, I think this is probably the last we'll hear about the game. MMORPGs are notoriously difficult and time-consuming to develop, and the Lord of the Rings MMORPG has only been in the works since 2019, so it's unlikely there's a massive amount of content just sitting in a virtual drawer somewhere.

Still, should anything new come up I'll make sure to let you know. Until then, at least it'll be interesting to follow what happens with New World as it approaches its newly set August 31, 2021 release date.