Several of the commercial computer games based on Tolkien's works are no longer available in shops or from the original publishers.
Some publishers, as a service to their customers, allow such games to be distributed for free. This is reasonable: Games from the eighties no longer have any commercial value, but many people like to play them (for nostalgic reasons, if nothing else) and by releasing them in this way the companies receive some good-will.
But not all publishers do this. In some cases, it may even be difficult to find out who the legal owner of a certain game is. In such cases, only two alternatives remain if you really wish to own the game:
Please respect that there is absolutely no possible way in which you will get an illegal copy of a game from me, even if I have it and could copy it for you. A lot of old games can be found on the Internet if one knows where to look, but you are on your own if that is the way you want to go.
If you want to find an original, however, chances are that I can at least point you in the right direction. Here are some things to try:
USENET News ads. An excellent source for old games. The subject line of for sale ads usually begins with the letters "FS", making them easy to recognize. You can search for a certain game with search engines such as Deja. Restrict your search to groups where you have a reasonable chance. For PC games, try the comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.adventure and comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.rpg groups. For old eight-bit games, find an appropriate group such as comp.sys.cbm or comp.sys.atari.8bit. Other possible places are rec.games.video.marketplace or comp.forsale.computers.
Web pages for selling and trading, such as eBay, Game Trading Zone, The Adventure Market, Commodore Center (within Sweden) or The C64 Game Guide Shop.
Used and surplus software stores. Such stores often hide a treasure for game lovers. Some of the listed pages lead to people's private collection pages. All these had some Tolkien games last time I checked: Ye Olde Infocomme Shoppe (US), Centsible Software (US), Dr. Feelgood's (US), Retrogamer (UK), American's Games (Italy), Retro Classix (UK), Retro Direct (UK), The Trade In Post (UK), Zone Multimedia Direct (Australia), Synchronic Web (Finland), Sintech (Germany).
Back to the Tolkien computer games page