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'Lord of the Rings' going online

April 10, 2007 at 6:08 PM

WESTWOOD, Mass., April 10 (UPI) -- The "Lord of the Rings" Middle Earth fantasy of yore is being morphed into a computer game for the 21st century by a Massachusetts company.

Turbine Inc. of Westwood, Mass., is banking on "Lord of the Rings Online: Shadows of Angmar" becoming the next big thing for Internet gamers, the Boston Globe said Tuesday.

"Every game player knows the books, loves the books," said Jeffrey Anderson, Turbine's chief executive officer. "Lord of the Rings (Online) marks the first time they can walk around in an authentic recreation of (J.R.R.) Tolkien's Middle Earth."

Turbine, known for the long-popular "Dungeons and Dragons Online" and "Asheron's Call," thinks the Tolkien-inspired game could surpass the 8 million subscribers who have glommed on to "World of Warcraft" by Blizzard Entertainment Inc. An early trial run of "Lord of the Rings Online" attracted nearly 700,000 online players.

The game, which will cost $50 for software and $10-$15 per month to subscribe, will allow players to create their own characters to take part in 1,600 possible adventures that will take place over the equivalent of more than 19,000 square miles of "Middle Earth" terrain.

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