‘Tales of the Shire’ brings together the charming world of Animal Crossing with the epic fantasy of Lord of the Rings

Remember that teaser from last year for a cozy life sim set in Middle Earth? Finally breaking their silence, publisher Private Division and developer Wētā Workshop Game Studio have unveiled the highly anticipated announcement trailer for Tales of the Shire: A Lord of the Rings Game.

This charming life/farm simulation game is set to arrive on the Nintendo Switch in the latter half of 2024, giving us a few more months to wait before we embark on our virtual adventures.

Regarding the nature of the subject, it is quite predictable, just as one would anticipate. Embark on a journey in Tales of the Shire as you craft your very own Hobbit and establish a cozy home in the charming village of Bywater, nestled just south of Hobbiton. As you work towards organizing a grand village festival, you’ll also get to experience all the classic elements of a life simulation game: fishing, decorating, building friendships, and enjoying delicious second breakfasts. It’s all part of the immersive experience! Below is the official summary of the game:

Create and personalise a Hobbit with an array of customisations to experience the world of J.R.R. Tolkien’s beloved Middle-earth universe your own way. Settle in and decorate a cosy Hobbit home, choosing from an array of furniture and home décor to create your unique, humble abode. Then head outdoors to Bywater for plenty of cooking, fishing, foraging, gardening, and more relaxing activities in the Shire. Toss your lure to catch trout from the glistening waters of Bywater Pool, gather wild mushrooms, and then use the collected ingredients to bake a succulent pie to serve for luncheon. With a full belly, stroll back outside to explore the Shire and build relationships with the Bywater locals by helping them to build a garden, sharing one of the many daily Hobbit meals, and more.

It has a distinct Animal Crossing vibe to it. However, in our opinion, it appears to be quite generic, resembling other farm/life simulation games that many players may have already experienced.

Admittedly, the idea of a cosy Shire game has crossed our minds more than once. It seems like a natural fit and is hard to resist. Let’s hope that Wētā Workshop can bring some of that movie magic into the gaming world. After last year’s Gollum, the series could really use it.