Atari 2600: Lord of the Rings – Journey to Rivendell (1983)

In 1983 I had sadly not read J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic Lord of the Rings yet, though I knew of the might of the Dwarrows and the gentle nature of Hobbits thanks to the Rankin-Bass animated adaptations of the Hobbit and Return of the King. I had also seen the Ralph Bakshi version at this point thanks to the Movie Channel but I preferred the former more. Those Rankin-Bass films pretty much made sure I would become a fan of Dwarves above all other fantasy races for the rest of my life.

I did not realize however in 1983 that Parker Brothers had crafted an Atari 2600 title that allowed you to take on the role of Frodo as you left the Shire on your journey to Rivendell, trying to avoid the Black Riders while doing so.

Here are a few screenshots of from the completed but never published title.

Hope is not lost though! The good folks over at AtariAge have secured the prototype for the the cartridge and you may down load the ROM freely from the link above. A huge thanks to AtariAge of course for archiving this important title and for the pictures posted up top. Thanks as well to Glenn Returns for that stirring soundtrack segment from the Hobbit!


Editor at Retroist
Searching through the alleys for useful knowledge in the city of Nostalgia. Huge cinema fanatic and sometimes carrier of the flame for the weirding ways of 80s gaming, toys, and television. When his wife lets him he is quite happy sitting in the corner eating buckets of beef jerky.

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