Lord of the Rings: War in the North joins the long list of action RPGs that made their appearance at E3 2011. On the show floor was a 3 player co-op of the game where all the characters in the squad were pre-chosen. There was a human ranger, an Elven mage, and a Dwarven warrior. The interesting thing about these classes is that they are not bound to their roles. That is to say, the Elf mage does not have to only use magic. She is also able to attack with a sword.
When a character levels up, the player can distribute points into their skill trees. In the demo, there were three different skill trees which the player could distribute their character’s experience points. Through these skill trees the player can specialize their character. For instance, the Elf mage can choose to become a support or battle mage. However from what I have noticed in the hands-on demo, the player is not bound to a certain skill tree after they have chosen their character’s specialization. Granted the player has enough experience points to distribute, they can create an all-round character.
The element that surprised me the most in Lord of the Rings: War of the North is the appearance of the Great Eagles found in the Lord of the Rings series. Although the eagle can be viewed doing all sorts of nasty things to the enemy in the E3 2011 trailer, never did I think it could also be used in battle. In the demo, the player is able to summon the eagle for a short moment. The eagle would let out a cry, swoop down and cause massive damage against the enemy. Unfortunately, the player cannot always rely on the eagle because there is a long reset timer after each summon. Despite being trigger happy with the eagle, I learnt that the player cannot summon the eagle to kill enemies within a building. Although it would be interesting to see the scale of the bird inside a small room while tearing enemies apart, I assume that it would have trouble getting through the building’s entrance.