Lord of the Rings

Pinside rating

This game received 1171 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 8.711 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks 1st in the game group "Lord of the Rings ". The group itself ranks #11 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game Design: 8.961

Artwork: 8.293

Sounds/Music: 8.456

Other Aspects: 8.821

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) Pinside.com staff & moderators rate this game. 10 of us have rated this game.


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This game is part of a group

Note! There are multiple versions of this game!
This is "Lord of the Rings ".
The other version is: Lord of the Rings Limited Edition

Found 701 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 701 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 29.

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33 days ago
If it was your only pin then I am sure it would be great. Super long ball times and yes I had it setup pretty difficult and settings set to difficult. I am sure the year this pin came out it was amazing but in a bigger collection this pin doesn't ever get turned on and no desire to play.

Theme is great and some of the modes are fun. It's too bad they didn't do this pin today I couldn't imagine how great it would be.

I don't know not much more to say about this pin as its just mediocre at best.
44 days ago
I loved playing this pin but sadly for me after about 5-10 games i couldnt get into it as much as other games, i love the way the movie is portrayed and how good the idea is with all the toys but unfortunately i didnt like the layout of some shots as it felt i kept having to hit the same things over and over. Super fun game and if you are a big lord of the rings fan you will not be disappointed with this beauty
47 days ago
Bought this NIB and have had it ever since. The flipper over-heating issue is the main annoyance. But I've learned to deal with it.
52 days ago
Definitely one of my top 5 fav pins. I am just getting started in the pin world. But even after a bunch of different games I have played this one has my heart. I am super happy with this being my first pin to own too!
68 days ago
Smooth shots, great layout....great game....definitely a keeper if you can find a nice one.
73 days ago
I had to wait until godzilla to play a better pin all
77 days ago
Shots are smooth and there are several really cool ones. For 2003 the sound and artwork are good, however a little on the dark side. I am a fan of the theme, although not a die hard one and think the theming is terrific. I really enjoyed playing it, trying to get to Valinor is so tough, best I could do was 5 gifts, 2 NBs and TABA. Finishing it all would be a long term goal for sure
3 months ago
OK, I don't own this and I've only played a dozen times are so, but I have spent most of the last month hunting down all the modern Stern pins and playing them all (at least the one's that interested me), and I have to say LotR came out the surprise winner. Always been a fan of the books, not so much the movies, so I find the art (meaning stills from the movie) pretty poor, but everything else about this table is top notch. The quality of the build, the layout, the music, and the incorporation of the theme and mood of the films so completely. There is so much to do, obviously a deep and complex rule set I don't get yet, I'd love to own this pin; but happy to just go play it at the local mall a few times a week! Stern's best serious pin, IMHO,
3 months ago
Great shooter. Nice range of achievable goals for all skill sets (Beginners- activating multiballs, Intermediate- easier modes, "Destroy the Ring", Advanced - More challenging modes, "There and Back Again", Experts - "Valinor!"). Some of my favorite callouts. "To warrrrrrrrr!", and great sound track/sound design. Overall, great translation of the theme into an excellent pinball experience.
3 months ago
An incredible game, and an important milestone in Pinball history. LOTR showed that Stern was capable of a masterpiece as much as the glorious 90s WPC games. 1999 was a dark year for pinball, when Williams withdrew from the business. The only other volume manufacturer remaining was Stern. And frankly, Stern efforts at this time were lackluster. A couple of the Stern pins in the years that followed 1999 began to show some promise, especially the Lawlor titles (RCT and Monopoly). But these pins still lacked that something, the magic that was MM or MB.

And then in 2003, LOTR was released. It was obvious on play that this title and treatment was astoundingly good. There’s many reasons for this. Foremost, the pinball itself was an outstanding design with great flow, variety, and just the right amount of difficultly. The rule set was spectacularly deep, with Wizard modes that were satisfying. Music was absolutely stand out. I still gets chills when “There and Back Again” starts. Another amazing design choice in this pin was the dead-serious treatment of the subject matter. It was not only faithful to the movies in the extreme, but it had absolutely no humor - none - a risky design choice in this time frame that paid off with a deeply-moving experience to anyone who’s a fan of both Tolkien and pinball.

LOTR established Stern as the worthy successor to Williams. It showed they could produced deep, satisfying, classic pins that appealed to the collector and enthusiast markets. LOTR in many ways showed pinball had a future after the bleak post-Williams doldrums. The many manufacturers today owe a great debt to this title. It’s a piece of pinball history, one of the all-time greatest pins (I’d probably tie it with MM for best pinball ever), and worthy in any collection.
3 months ago
Good, well thought out, challenging (but not too challenging) pin. Definitely my favorite of the Stern '00s pins.
4 months ago
An enjoyable game that I’d like to own.
Not the type of game you can casually play and appreciate, really need a lot of time with it to go deep and experience everything it has to offer.

Will update when I own one
5 months ago
Great Title that seems to play as good today as it did years ago. Great all time title.
5 months ago
Best theme ever. Wonderful all around game. Easy rule set to follow. All shots are doable. Wonderful flow. Great family game! Cabinet art work is blah.
5 months ago
I had the honor of owning one for awhile. Game play is excellent and shots are smooth. Modes are excellent and multi-balls are cool. Overall a winner.
6 months ago
I am very underwhelmed with this game. Seems so basic for a machine from the 2000s. Pretty boring overall if you ask me. All of the toys/mechs are dark and not lit so they just look like lumps of coal. Sounds are very repetitive. Gomez has made some great games this just isn’t one of them.

It has some flow and the ramps follow a nice path. The ring lock is neat. The scoring seems well balanced. Ive read many of the reviews of this game and have a tough time understanding what people see in this game.

I like the theme, I wish it was a more fun game, but I don’t want to play it again.
6 months ago
I picked up a home use only LotR a month ago, and we CAN’T STOP PLAYING IT. I own 9 other pins, 6 of which are already in the top 100 (RfM, HS, Whirwind, STTNG, etc), and this machine is just on a whole different level...SUPER DEEP CODE, which I usually don’t care for too much, but its’ code is emplimented in this ‘epic adventure’ so well, it almost makes me feel that I’m ‘in the the Films or in the books’. Flow of the machine is very nice..and a bit challenging (my first Stern pin-I own mostly 90ies williams), but I have had some epic play times..THIS IS THE ONLY MACHINE I WOULD WANT LONG PLAY TIMES (and that’s a good thing!). Callouts are great, music is MEH-but actually just installed a pinsound plus board last night, and with the new mix(es), it’s even more of a high-end pin. I really don’t care about the artwork, like everybody else, but I didn’t score it a 5..i gave it a 3. I actually like the pf art..side art is pretty lame though..I intend on doing a ‘wood-engraved’ sideart mod to mine (without hurting the art underneath...I scored mine for a great price, for such an epic machine..and it’s PRESTINE!! Already came with a buttload of mods, and I’m doing even more (installing the Palantir Globe today) ..Getting the Balrog Whip, adding paths of the dead, but almost every other factory mod is currently on it. It certainly is becoming ‘MY PRECIOUS’. Very well done George Gomez!!!
7 months ago
This game is a masterpiece for me. I love everything about it: theme, layout, call-outs, game play, modes, etc. The toys are excellent with moving towers and Balrog bash, its packed. Unique ramps, world under glass, and actual actor voices make this stand up to a great theme. Can be a little dark, but with updated lighting that may be improved.
I would love Stern to release this with updated tech. and new (drawn) artwork. I hear the complaints on the some shots being clucky, but it is smooth enough with so many things to shoot at for only 2 flippers making it a player.
Best game of the 2000's in my opinion; Stern Top 5 ever.
7 months ago
an other masterpiece from mister Gomez with Deadpool but in a totally different way.
a long ball pinball linear adventure instead of fast and furious gameplay but still addictive with an incredible them integration and a very very deep ruleset.
a bit repetitive when you have already destroyed the ring as it is really linear in a old fashioned way but so much well designed !
9 months ago
Compared with many of the newer games that try to combine funny themes with a design, this game stands out in a good way for remaining serious with its theme, call outs and gameplay. The code keeps the game from seeming repetitive and after a little studying, its fairly easy to understand whats going on. The graphics are not great at all, however the call outs do a really good job pulling you in with their countdowns during the fight modes. However because of the seriousness, or darkness even of the theme, wife and child do not appreciate it much. I love it as for me the seriousness of the theme and callouts draw me into the game in a way no other game is able as of yet. Pinsound speaker replacement, shaker, color dmd and along with brass help bring the game up to date with modern standards to the extent possible.
9 months ago
The amount of toys and shots are great. The lock ball mech is quiet something.
9 months ago
Nice variety of things to do and the rules require you to hit a variety of shots to play the multiballs for each of the three movies. The one I played was set with outlane posts at their widest on location, so it was a bit unforgiving when hitting the slingshots. This game needs a vault- art looks a bit dated now on pf and the sound is typical pre SAM 2003 quality. Love the theme being a fan of the books and films.
9 months ago
It’s hard to rate Lord of the Rings as I purchased it without playing it first. As a result, I’ve never known it ‘on site’ - only in my house.

The artwork is a bit grimy and pixelly, but it totally nails the theme. The Balrog (‘ballrog’) is one of the best toys in pinball, and it combines the wonderful magnetic ring shot with flowing ramps, numerous modes and multi-balls, and evocative callouts from the original films.

UPDATE 1.0: Owned for two months. Lowered the rating slightly. It’s a good pin, but I find the artwork a bit grimy for my tastes. The Balrog, Aragorn sword lock and Frodo ring shot are amazing fun, but most of the other shots feel a bit mediocre. Unlike Fish Tales in which every shot feels like it places you in peril of draining, Lord of the Rings is a long game where mistakes are largely recoverable. As such, it tends to start to feel like a long slog.
9 months ago
this is the most beautiful pin in my opinion when finnished all in brass with invisi and pinsound this thing tantilizes
10 months ago
This is an incredible game because of how well it captures a beloved theme, and how entertaining it is to play. After playing hundreds of games on it, I found that it easily had that 'just one more game' appeal and the code depth meant there was always more for me to explore and improve on. I highly recommend this game.
There are 701 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 29.

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