Oct 31, 2020 | Updated: 09:48 PM EDT

New 'Hobbit' Film Gets Its Own Google Mini-Game

Dec 13, 2013 05:14 PM EST


Google’s cross-promotions are well known and probably equally liked as they are despised. One of the latest of these is a “Chrome Experiment,” as the company terms it, called “A Journey Through Middle-earth” for the new Hobbit film.

While there’s no doubt an eager army of Tolkien freaks out there more than happy to take advantage of anything vaguely related to the franchise, you can color us not impressed.

“In “The Hobbit,” a company of Dwarves tries to reclaim the lost kingdom of Erebor from Smaug the Terrible, a fire-breathing Dragon. While the Dwarves’ quest is fraught with danger, your journey to Erebor is just a click away in “A Journey Through Middle-earth,” the Chrome Experiment released a few weeks ago from Warner Bros. Pictures, New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM),” the company wrote in a Google Blog post.

Journey Through Middle-earth begins with a map view of several locations included in the new film. Users can click on one of the towns to “explore,” but this is where the fun ends, if you were having any to begin with. Essentially, it’s a slideshow of scenes and characters and your ability to actually navigate in any direction is severely more limited than, say, Google Street View.

“You can now follow the Dwarves’ journey to Erebor and try to outsmart Smaug on your desktop, mobile phone or tablet. But it might be wise to first pay a little visit to the folks who live in nearby Thranduil’s Hall and Lake-town—locations that recently became accessible in this Chrome Experiment—just in case you need their help against the mighty Dragon.”

There are six locations in all and each one is equally lame. Google has created some pretty fun mini-games in the past but this unfortunately is not one of them. Mountain View encourages you to check out the Google Play Store for more Hobbit-related games and apps, which will hopefully hold your attention at least a little better.

For what it’s worth, the new Hobbit film is actually pretty good, at least compared to the last one, which felt more like a three-hour tourism commercial for New Zealand. 

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