If you’re a Ringer, a Tolkienite, or a Tolkiendil (dealer’s choice), these board games will be of the utmost interest to you. As Gandalf so wisely said, “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.” A Lord of the Rings board game sounds like a good choice to me.
The variety of games inspired by the adventures of this epic book trilogy give players no lack of choice with gameplay. From role-playing memorable characters, campaigns across Middle-earth, to a game of Risk, the LoTR-themed board games won’t disappoint the most enthusiastic of Tolkien fans.
Vanquish these games as the ring was destroyed in the fires of Mount Doom. Go forth, and guide the Fellowship, Sauron’s not going to defeat himself. Check out the best Lord of The Rings board games below.
🏆 Our Top Picks for The Lord of the Rings Board Games
In a hurry? Take a quick peek before you go.
Top Lord of The Rings Board Games
War of the Ring (Second Edition)
Playing time: 360 mins
The War of the Ring has begun…
First published in 1976, this is the OG of Lord of the Rings-themed games. War of the Ring allows players to destroy the ring or find it for the forces of evil.
As one of the Free Peoples, you must defend the last free realms of Middle-Earth. Facing off against evil, players will meet Sauron and his evil minions on the battlefield in an attempt to defeat them. Not only are you leading the defense, but players must lead the Fellowship of the Ring as they head to Mount Doom as well.
A Shadow player will lead the hordes of the Dark Lord, trying to bring darkness to all in Middle-Earth. Lead armies of Trolls, Orcs, Ringwraiths, and Wolfriders into battle. While at war a Shadow player must also bring the precious ring to their master.
War of the Ring is a highly strategic wargame that’ll consume you through the epic fight for the ring. “The sun gleamed red, and under the wings of the Nazgul the shadows of death fell dark upon the earth.”
How will you forge the destiny of Middle-Earth?
Hunt for the Ring
Playing time: 90-180 mins
Frodo has left the safety of the Shire. Will he reach the sanctuary of Rivendell?
Hunt for the Ring takes you on an epic journey across Middle-Earth. The Nazgul are on the hunt for Frodo Baggins and his Hobbit friends. One player will take on the role of Frodo. The rest play Ringwraiths that’ll stop at nothing to recover what the Dark Lord requires.
In this Lord of the Rings-themed game, the final chapters are experienced through deduction, adventure, and hidden movement. As Ringwraiths track Frodo, the Ringbearer secretly takes hidden paths to reach Bree and then Rivendell, (using paper and pencil).
In this two-part game, powerful allies and the aid of friends will be the only way to keep Nazgul at bay. Action dice and Sorcery cards help the wicked with nasty tricks.
As Frodo journeys along, remember, “Not, all those who wander are lost.”
The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game
Playing time: 30-60 mins
The Dark Lord has gathered his forces seeking ultimate power. WIll a heroic few stop the cast of eternal shadow?
The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game, is a cooperative card game that feels more intimate with 1 to 2 players commanding powerful characters. In this card game, you’ll select your hero cards, and try to rally allies and gather artifacts. With each hero having special advantages and influence, players must choose their heroes wisely.
From the cheery hills of the Shire to the dangerous paths of Mirwood Forest, working together is the only chance you’ll have to complete this dangerous quest. An added bonus of this card game is the regular expansions, so you can create your original decks and explore further into Middle-Earth.
The Lord of the Rings: Journeys in Middle-Earth
Playing time: 60-120 mins
The Lord of The Rings: Journey in Middle-Earth board game is full of exploration, as players embark on an adventure through the iconic world of Middle-Earth. In this fully cooperative game players form their Fellowship and set out to unravel mysteries and make courageous choices to fight evil.
Each bold hero (Agagorn, Gimli, and Bilbo, just to name a few), has a unique deck of skill cards that they’ll need for when danger approaches. Only by strategizing and managing your cards will your Fellowship complete its quest.
This game comes with a free companion app to help guide you through each adventure and your campaign as a whole. The app ensures a unique experience for each game as it provides an array of possibilities. It’s a great addition to a tabletop board game.
The Lord of the Rings: The Board Game
Playing time: 60-90 mins
After 20 years, The Lord of the Rings board game has come out with a new anniversary edition. With beautiful, or should I say, fierce heroic miniatures, and a Sauron miniature, there is only one ring to rule them all. This anniversary edition is well worth it.
Players must work together to stop Sauron from enslaving the land, casting darkness over all. Using skill and strategy you may be guided to victory. In this game, you join Frodo and the Fellowship throughout the trilogy. From Moria to the wastelands of Mordor, you’ll have to face four conflicts through physical battle and corruption of the mind.
Playing your cards right and unlocking paths should help Frodo overcome conflict. But as in the books, the ring can help but it’s also a daring risk that could expose you. If a player meets miniature Sauron, they’ll be eliminated and meet their untimely doom.
The Lord of the Rings Deck-Building Game
Playing time: 30 mins
The battle for Middle-Earth begins!
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring Deck-Building Game combines, strategy, and fun cards with scenes from the first film in the Trilogy.
Once again taking the role of a brave hero in the struggle to defeat Sauron and his forces, you’ll begin with only a few combat maneuvers so it’s important to gain powerful cards from the get-go.
This deck-building game is a bit more easygoing than many on the list. It’s fun but also has cards containing, allies, enemies, locations, and artifacts which gives this game an edge. Gain unique powers and special advantages to win the most victory points!
Risk: The Lord of the Rings (Trilogy Edition)
Playing time: 180 mins
A classic game of Risk takes you to Middle-Earth in this special edition.
In Risk: The Lord of the Rings (Trilogy Edition), players choose to lead the forces of good or evil. Using the traditional rules of Risk, you’ll battle for territory and fight over regions as the Fellowship makes their way to Mount Doom. Additional adventure cards, territory cards, and battalions give a game of Risk a feeling of fantasy, adventure, and even danger.
The board is drawn by the official cartographer for the films, so you can be sure to have an accurate and highly detailed board. In this time-honored game of strategy and risk, can you reign over Middle-Earth?
The Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation
Playing time: 30 mins
Go head-to-head in the battle of good vs. evil.
The Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation, is a 2-player game similar to Stratego at its core. With stunning artwork by John Howe, fans are immersed into the realm of Middle-Earth.
As Sauron seeks to find the ring while the Free Peoples are attempting to destroy it, both sides become somewhat confrontational. There’s no remedy or therapy in all of Middle-Earth that’d repair the relationship between these foes so better bluff and strategize in this intense 30-minute game.
Considered one of Reiner Kniza’s best works, The Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation is not to be missed.
Middle-Earth Strategy Battle Game: The Lord of the Rings – Battle of Pelennor Fields
Playing time: 90-180 mins
Are you seeking war-raging destruction, but also looking for a creative outlet?
Release your creativity by assembling and painting the miniatures in this fantastic set from Games Workshop. Middle-Earth Strategy Battle Game: The Lord of the Rings: Battle of Pelennor Fields includes a kit of miniature Kings, Warriors of the Dead, Orcs, Trolls, Rohan, Mordor, and plenty more.
Players get the experience of recreating the greatest battles and adventures from the Lord of the Rings. If you’re disgruntled by the lack of The Hobbit on this list, this game includes epic battles from the book too! Take command of evil forces or defend the city of Minas Tirith, the choice is yours…
The Lord of the Rings: Battle for Middle Earth
Playing time: 30 mins
Battle for Middle Earth is a fantastic family game for those looking to jump right into Tolkien’s world.
Players will find all their favorite familiar characters in this simple card-drafting game. Players collect Fellowship cards and send them off to fight the minions of Mordor. Beware, when the third Mordor card is drawn, all players are attacked.
Most card/board games set in Middle Earth are massive epics that require hours of setup and playtime, but Battle for Middle Earth takes a different approach. It’s easy to learn and quick to play, and relatively cheap in comparison to others. This makes it the perfect bite-sized game set in Middle Earth.
Honorable Mention: The One Ring
The Tabletop RPG, The One Ring, hit shelves with a bang. It raised over 2 million dollars for the first edition, players were delighted with another chance to delve into Tolkien’s masterpiece, but this time in the form of a traditional RPG.
The One Ring RPG has been revised in its second edition, with updated artwork, and a streamlined ruleset. For those among you craving another adventure and having the imagination to spare, The One Ring is a perfect way to live out your Middle Earth fantasies.
We hope you enjoyed our list of the best Lord of the Rings board games! As a huge fan of the books and movies, I can wholeheartedly say that these games capture the essence of the world that Tolkien so elegantly created. Dive into Middle-Earth with one of these tabletop masterpieces!
If you’re looking for something a bit lighter, however, but still with a Lord of the Rings theme — we have some other options as well as re-skinned classics for you too!
Let us know in the comments if you’ve tried any of these Lord of the Rings-themed board games and which are your favorites! We’d love to hear from you.
Ready Player Christine. Since my first D&D game, which took a turn for the weird and wacky (probably my influence), the world of board and tabletop games came alive. Now today, I get to write about these fantastical, fictional, and downright fun worlds.