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Long read: The beauty and drama of video games and their clouds

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Lord of the multi-platform

EA saves us from the forces of Vivendi

Of the two Lord Of The Rings titles, EA's may be a fairly basic slasher with some very pretty visuals, but compared to Vivendi's shoddy book-based Fellowship codswallop it's like inheriting Rivendell and Arwen dumping that Balrog look-alike Aragorn in your favour.

However for GameCube and Xbox owners, the wait for their platform-specific versions of EA's enjoyable Rings romp has been quite arduous. We only hope that none of you were reduced to buying Vivendi's Fellowship - unless you enjoy curiously aimless linearity, repetitive/boring combat and dodgy visuals, anyway.

The good news is that EA has reportedly completed work on both the Xbox and Cube versions of The Two Towers, and will be launching them in the US at least on December 30th. EA Europe is being less helpful, with the two games absent from its release schedule entirely for the time being. However, we'd anticipate the Cube one turning up about a fortnight later than its sibling - sign of the times, eh?

Sadly neither of the ports has been enhanced on their respective journeys, so we can expect a very similar dish to the one served up on PS2 last month, although it's possible that Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound will make it into the Xbox incarnation. In the mean time, we suggest you go and see the movie, which is debuting all over the world next Wednesday, December 18th.

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