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  1. #1

    Kudos to the devs for Pelennor Field battle

    Finally getting my main through Far Anorien and Old Anorien over the Christmas break (and getting my Imbued weapons up to an impressive level), and had a day off work yesterday. Thought I'd get a couple of quests in the Beacon Hills caught up. Got through Minas Tirith previously and kind of got sucked in and moved the Epic story all the way to Pelennor.

    WOW

    I'm the guy that more often than not doesn't even read the quest text, so I was surprised at my emotional reaction to the Pelennor field battle. Stepping onto that field with the Riders of Rohan I was struck by how well the devs managed to give it the appearance of a full-blown medieval battle. I've played actual wargames that had none of the spectacle here. The cut scenes were excellent and when the king rode down the lines proclaiming it a "Red Day" I actually had a lump in my throat and goosebumps.Epic indeed - one of my favourite LOTRO experiences in nine years of being on Landroval.

    The people who put this together - the epic scale, the scripting, fitting my character into the overall scope of the battle - did a great job, so thanks.
    His sword was long, his lance was keen, his shining helm afar was seen.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by Sito_Origami View Post
    Finally getting my main through Far Anorien and Old Anorien over the Christmas break (and getting my Imbued weapons up to an impressive level), and had a day off work yesterday. Thought I'd get a couple of quests in the Beacon Hills caught up. Got through Minas Tirith previously and kind of got sucked in and moved the Epic story all the way to Pelennor.

    WOW

    I'm the guy that more often than not doesn't even read the quest text, so I was surprised at my emotional reaction to the Pelennor field battle. Stepping onto that field with the Riders of Rohan I was struck by how well the devs managed to give it the appearance of a full-blown medieval battle. I've played actual wargames that had none of the spectacle here. The cut scenes were excellent and when the king rode down the lines proclaiming it a "Red Day" I actually had a lump in my throat and goosebumps.Epic indeed - one of my favourite LOTRO experiences in nine years of being on Landroval.

    The people who put this together - the epic scale, the scripting, fitting my character into the overall scope of the battle - did a great job, so thanks.
    I completely agree. The battle of the Pelennor fields was awesome. Best part of the epic story ever. And then, you go to the black gate (getting there is nice, too)... and what should be another huge battle isnt even a skirmish. That one is really really sad. Just like Mordor isnt what it should be in any way.
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  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Oelle View Post
    I completely agree. The battle of the Pelennor fields was awesome. Best part of the epic story ever.
    It's nice to see some positive comments here once in awhile.
    His sword was long, his lance was keen, his shining helm afar was seen.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oelle View Post
    And then, you go to the black gate (getting there is nice, too)... and what should be another huge battle isnt even a skirmish.
    I disagree pretty strongly with this. The Battle at the Black Gate is full of emotion and import, but I think our version covers its four or five paragraphs pretty well. The "huge battle" you were expecting is a delaying action by a tiny force, and everyone involved knows that it's doomed to fail. It simply isn't a gigantic battle along the lines of the Battle of Pelennor Fields, and it isn't supposed to be.

    MoL

  5. #5
    Very much enjoyed Pelennor and the Black Gate. Got through both of these on my second character over the holidays as well. Very well done.

    I do wish there was a lotro skirmish at the Black Gate.....I mean the instance kind that gives marks Please add one sometime!!! This is a moment that needs to be re-experienced.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigLotroFan View Post
    Very much enjoyed Pelennor and the Black Gate. Got through both of these on my second character over the holidays as well. Very well done.

    I do wish there was a lotro skirmish at the Black Gate.....I mean the instance kind that gives marks Please add one sometime!!! This is a moment that needs to be re-experienced.
    That's why we have alts! One down, twelve to go .....

    The moment I most cherished from the Black Gate sequence is the cut scene that looks long over the battlefield, and then the camera (so to speak) pulls back from Dagorlad, back through Gondor, back past the Argonath ... and then turns back southward through the Argonath, with the sound of the beating of great wings. Well done, whoever did that. (It can be seen in the Movie Library, Volume IV, Book 8, Part Two.)
    Eruanne - Shards of Narsil-1 - Elendilmir -> Arkenstone

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    I disagree pretty strongly with this. The Battle at the Black Gate is full of emotion and import, but I think our version covers its four or five paragraphs pretty well. The "huge battle" you were expecting is a delaying action by a tiny force, and everyone involved knows that it's doomed to fail. It simply isn't a gigantic battle along the lines of the Battle of Pelennor Fields, and it isn't supposed to be.

    MoL
    The black gate battle is fine for me. What I do not like though and I am a bit picky on this, is during the battle of Pelenor, the way I understand it, the Warden's, Guardian's and Beorn's mirror Visions (from volume 2) all come to be, yet there is no mention of them happening. I remember somewhere someone said they did not want to distract from the battle by having it pop on screen, but I think having that pop up would be a epic moment like it does for other classes.

    I am however still excited to see how and where you pull off the last two classes (Minstrel and Champion) visions as the Runekeepers finally did pop in the black book and it was a totally unexpected place and time for me because I had thought the vision pointed to Shelob. Now with the Champion it seems to me to point to the Battle of the Wold I believe and the Minstrel at least to me sounds like Minas Morgul. So any hints on those?

    One last thing... Skirmishes.... We need new ones. There are some areas in the Waste and Mordor that call for them (as maybe the Battle of Pelenor) any chance of seeing new ones somewhere down the line.

    Thanks for the feedback
    I saw the light fade from the sky
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    As the snowflakes cover my fallen brothers
    I will say this last goodbye

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by djheydt View Post
    That's why we have alts! One down, twelve to go .....

    The moment I most cherished from the Black Gate sequence is the cut scene that looks long over the battlefield, and then the camera (so to speak) pulls back from Dagorlad, back through Gondor, back past the Argonath ... and then turns back southward through the Argonath, with the sound of the beating of great wings. Well done, whoever did that. (It can be seen in the Movie Library, Volume IV, Book 8, Part Two.)
    For me, the movie where you first see the Black gate is to me one of the most Epic Moments in Lotro....
    I saw the light fade from the sky
    On the wind I heard a sigh
    As the snowflakes cover my fallen brothers
    I will say this last goodbye

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sito_Origami View Post
    I'm the guy that more often than not doesn't even read the quest text
    May I humbly suggest, you're missing one of the best parts of the game.

    Yes, Pelennor was very well done. Good immersion in the events. I like the maps that show the flow of battle at different times. The Black Gate was well done too, though it's a shame there's no group instance tied to it to add some difficulty. Even a skirmish with endless waves of enemies ala Barrow Downs Survival would have made perfect sense.

  10. #10
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    I agree, Pelennor Fields was a highlight in the game for me.
    “All that is gold does not glitter,
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    The old that is strong does not wither,
    Deep roots are not reached by the frost."

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    I disagree pretty strongly with this. The Battle at the Black Gate is full of emotion and import, but I think our version covers its four or five paragraphs pretty well. The "huge battle" you were expecting is a delaying action by a tiny force, and everyone involved knows that it's doomed to fail. It simply isn't a gigantic battle along the lines of the Battle of Pelennor Fields, and it isn't supposed to be.

    MoL
    Okay. More in detail.
    The part where we stand in front of the black gate and negotiate is quite cool and fits the book, if we allow players to be there and gather the Hobbits belongings, which is fine with me. Well done.

    Afterwards, in a sequence, the door opens and we see the army get out. Afair, the army only goes through the gate and there is only one army. In my book, there is another army coming from the side and orcs dont only come through the gate, but through caves and from the mountains, too. Could be wrong though and I blame the game for it, as I've only seen that sequence with 2 of 8 chars. For all others it just didnt happen, just like most videosequences after Minas Tirith. Just bugged and missing in german client more often than actually playing. So while its a nice little video... I suppose many didnt see it as I didnt see it with 6 of 8 chars. okayish done, badly implemented (still unfixed) and the easterlings army completely missing?

    Then, the battle actually starts. As a player, it feels like you watched the enemies approach and fight for like 20 minutes before even acting as the battle is running for some time when you enter, although you were there the whole time. The feeling of "riding into the battle and starting the fight" was way cooler in Pelennor. It could easily have been an epic battle where the hordes approach and surge against the free people. I know, that many people hate epic battles... but this part of the mechanic would have been a better begin to that fight than just "here you are, the battle is already running, run around and kill some enemies". Sure, the feeling of fear and agony that the battle shows is done quite well... but the battle itself is like "kill ten orcs" and lasts like 5 Minutes. Maybe one even kills 20 orcs... dont know... its just over before it even began and starts in the middle of the fight instead of its beginning. The feeling I got while playing it is not the feeling of a battle... its just a tiny skirmish that might have lasted a half an hour in middle earth time... I dont know the exact time and stuff from the books, but if ~6000 free people fight against ~100000 orcs and easterlings, I'd think that would last several hours before coming to the sudden end that it had.
    And it ends with us leaving the battle to search for the hobbits... and we never see how it ends. It feels like whats in the game is a good reflection of book5 chapter 11, but completely ignores that book6 chapter 4 exists, where more is written about it. The whole battle is only free people against orcs, all those evil easterlings just dont exist even though they are the major enemy at the end of the battle, when all those orcs and trolls and those creatures flee and kill each other...

    ...and then we enter Mordor and many enemies didnt even notice that Sauron is dead. Like nothing has happened. ###?
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  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Vilan View Post
    May I humbly suggest, you're missing one of the best parts of the game.

    Yes, Pelennor was very well done. Good immersion in the events.
    I don't disagree, and I wasn't really acutely aware of it until Pelennor and we start meeting all these names I dimly recalled - the Rangers who my character had been helping throughout the last few years. And I'm like 'huh? I wonder what I did for *that* guy again because he clearly remembers and I don't."
    His sword was long, his lance was keen, his shining helm afar was seen.

  13. #13
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    Actually I agree. I did the epics of updates 17, 18, 19 and 20 on my old main char over xmas and I thought The Battle of the Pelennor Fields was really well done given the limitations the SSG team have to work with. U20 wasn't bad either - well paced and kept me wanting to progress. The update 17 epic though was poor in comparison.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sito_Origami View Post
    I don't disagree, and I wasn't really acutely aware of it until Pelennor and we start meeting all these names I dimly recalled - the Rangers who my character had been helping throughout the last few years. And I'm like 'huh? I wonder what I did for *that* guy again because he clearly remembers and I don't."
    Honestly even with reading the quest text I can't keep them all straight. Sometimes I read forum conversations that mention this or that ranger getting killed and I'm thinking "Ack, spoiler!" then find out they died back in Dunland or something.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    I disagree pretty strongly with this. The Battle at the Black Gate is full of emotion and import, but I think our version covers its four or five paragraphs pretty well. The "huge battle" you were expecting is a delaying action by a tiny force, and everyone involved knows that it's doomed to fail. It simply isn't a gigantic battle along the lines of the Battle of Pelennor Fields, and it isn't supposed to be.

    MoL
    I agree- and kudos for that battle. I loved it. Same with Pelennor Fields- it felt so moving all throughout... In fact, it felt so in line with the lore, that... it came close to bringing tears to my eyes, its so good...

    I do have to question-though... with Mordor- there's a couple of little things here and there that might've made it better... and here, I'll agree with Oelle.

    For one thing, Shelob was supposed to be alone, and it would be good to have an explanation that makes sense with the lore as to how all of these other spiders showed-up without being devoured by "Her Ladyship."

    Another thing, the Orcs feel too much like they've got things handled versus what Tolkien described- it would be nice to see more chaos, more Orcs running around all mindless and crazy, and more Orcs fighting each other, or a few ret-con's, like maybe Ugrukhor performed some dark Black Numenorean spell that made Roglarg and his Orcs more "in control" and docile compared to the rest of the mindless madness. Udun, Dor Amarth, and Talath Urui feel particularly too... well-ordered... for lands that have lost their power-source, their Dark Lord. Every Orc camp that doesn't have the "dark magic" ret-con should have mobs attacking each other and running in various directions- not standing-in-line waiting for orders, I think....

    The Orc arena... I really wish it was Haradrim forcing Nurnhoth to fight, (and a player-rescue operation) or at the least, a "dark power of Borangos" ret-con or something... Maybe Borangos and Urudani are channeling some dark power from out of Nargroth that enables them to "control" these Orcs to fight-out whose the best to become the Ghash-hai in some ways. In short, these things need in-game-lore explanations for their differences from what Tolkien wrote (which, in paraphrase, is: the Orcs turned mindless and slew each other or ran-off to wither-away in caves, same with the trolls, etc.)- hopefully plausible one's. I would've liked an Easterling or Haradrim, or even bad Dwarf trainer (maybe an opportunist from that larger encampment who wants to win bets on the Orc fights?) in place of that goblin near the arena in Talath Urui- we Players wouldn't cooperate with Goblins voluntarily, that's something that really needs a change. "Poor Snaga" in Cirith Ungol was still an awful wretch who had to fall-down a ladder and die- and I feel no sympathy for this goblin "poor Snaga" trainer whatsoever as a result. I also would've liked a Nurnhoth child named Viznak rather than a goblin in Agarnaith- I'd pity the -human- child far more, and it would truly be a race against time to ---save--- that kid from certain events gone awry in Seregost- if it was a person, not a Goblin. With it being a Goblin, all I can think is, "Oh, let the Merrevail have him!"

    The rest of it's pretty good, but in short, in all due respect and gratitude, Mordor feels like its trying to be -two- things at once when it can't. It feels like its trying "to have its cake and eat it too," to be the ironic pre-Ring Mordor where Sauron's in power AND post-Ring Mordor when Sauron's been defeated. I really think that... a few ret-con's, a few alterations of things, and a few thoughtful in-game-lore explanations, and it'll make more sense and feel much better. I recognize that the lore had to be bent in certain ways in order to provide Mordor's content, but... a few thoughtful revisions would truly go a long way to making Tolkien's envisioning of Mordor and the Game's feel far closer ((Speaking of which, Sam at one point, sees a gap in the clouds where the stars peek-through while in Mordor; I'd LOVE to see that effect in Mordor's skies at nightfall)).

    In short- I want Mordor to feel more like "Pelennor Fields" in its closeness to conveying Tolkien's story... The Black Gate, with some differences, still felt close to Tolkien's story, as well as the whole sequence of saving Frodo and Sam. After that... it kind of dropped-off... and it began to feel very, very weird... and what irks me is that there -are- key things that -can be done- in order to account for that weirdness... The structures of many of the storylines had me hooked, I love many of Mordor's stories, including the Black Book... but a little bit of polishing will go a long way to making the stories feel like, "Ah, that makes sense, I see now... WOW... Yes, these are no longer the well-ordered forces who marched on Pelennor Fields, this is different.... wow..." rather than, "What is this place? Why are the enemies so well-ordered? Why aren't they crazy? Isn't Sauron dead?"

    But overall, KUDOS! You've all still done a fantastic job story-wise considering the sheer... magnitude of everything- and I'm grateful for it
    Last edited by Phantion; Jan 16 2018 at 05:31 PM.
    Phantion no longer has a character named Phantion in-game. He transferred to Landroval.

    .

  16. #16
    Mordor is worth the money, no doubt. But I agree on the "too ordered" thing. Sauron is dead. The One Ring has been destroyed, and yet Orcs patrol and guard bridges? For what?

    Mordor's landcape is awesome, but the atmosphere is too clean. Imho Angmar feels more dangerous and malicious then post-ring Mordor.
    Original Challenger of the Abyss

  17. #17
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    The battle of Pelennor Fields was a highlight for sure, but it's not often that the Epic ever disappoints. I found the battle at the black gate ok, but I had a problem with the movies downloading at the time, so my first couple of times through it were a bit flat. That said, when I got it fixed and took more alts through it, it was a completely different experience. I think to fully enjoy the Epic, you have to read and digest as you go, at the very least, one time. Only then can you truly appreciate it. I spent three hours in my first run through the battle of Pelennor, and I don't regret it (even though I've since taken alts through there in like 20 minutes). I read everything, took breaks between quests just to explore the surroundings and look for the boundaries etc. It really is a highlight of the game.

    As for the comments about Mordor, it was fun at first, but it's long winded and overly stretched out - like butter stretched over too much bread. Much like running every last bit of HD on every alt for a few trait points, many will give it a miss on most but their mains, and that is what kills content.
    Last edited by Arnenna; Jan 18 2018 at 03:16 AM.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arnenna View Post
    The battle of Pelennor Fields was a highlight for sure, but it's not often that the Epic ever disappoints. I found the battle at the black gate ok, but I had a problem with the movies downloading at the time, so my first couple of times through it were a bit flat. That said, when I got it fixed and took more alts through it, it was a completely different experience. I think to fully enjoy the Epic, you have to read and digest as you go, at the very least, one time. Only then can you truly appreciate it. I spent three hours in my first run through the battle of Pelennor, and I don't regret it (even though I've since taken alts through there in like 20 minutes). I read everything, took breaks between quests just to explore the surroundings and look for the boundaries etc. It really is a highlight of the game.

    As for the comments about Mordor, it was fun at first, but it's long winded and overly stretched out - like butter stretched over too much bread. Much like running every last bit of HD on every alt for a few trait points, many will give it a miss on most but their mains, and that is what kills content.
    and that's the thing. When I find it painful to go through Mordor but still amazing and fun to do say Great River or Moria something is terribly wrong
    I saw the light fade from the sky
    On the wind I heard a sigh
    As the snowflakes cover my fallen brothers
    I will say this last goodbye

  19. #19
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    Well...

    After playing this game for 11 or 12 years or whatever it's been... I finally got to the end of the story, the destruction of the One Ring. Boy was I underwhelmed.

    First of all, we have the Confrontation at the Black Gate with the Mouth of Sauron, where he presents Frodo's gear. My first reaction was... what about Shelob? We had a session play that teased Shelob's Lair, but then we never SAW it. This would have been the time to give us that session play. Have Gandalf say to us, I wonder what happened to him... and we fade to session play, playing as SAM, as he comes to Frodo's rescue.

    Then we retreat, and the Battle of Morannon begins... and it was really underwhelming. After Pelennor, Morannon was just weak. I could go wherever I wanted with little or no actual need to battle anything. The foes I did battle were weak and few. Even the trolls were no threat. But, I did the "missions" during the battle, and that was that.

    Then, the Nazgul fly away and we're told Frodo has completed his Quest, Sauron is destroyed and the battle is over! What? How anticlimactic. We needed another session play segment here, perhaps TWO of them, one for Frodo and Sam evading the orcs on the plains of Gorgoroth, one for them battling Gollum and destroying the Ring. Yes, I know we got the latter in the bower at Cormallen, but doing it AFTER the fact makes it an anticlimax. It was very weak storytelling.

    All in all, I was disappointed that THIS is how the story ended after SO LONG building up to it... that the battle was so weak... that we missed out on Shelob... that the climax and defeat of Sauron happened OFFSCREEN... Very underwhelmed.
    Skjald of Rohan, Minstrel, Captain of Rohan

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  20. #20
    Pelennor and the Battle of the Morannon have some of the best non-Chance Thomas music in the whole game. I wish they had done a bit more with the super cool "battle phases" mechanic but both are great moments in the game.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    I disagree pretty strongly with this. The Battle at the Black Gate is full of emotion and import, but I think our version covers its four or five paragraphs pretty well. The "huge battle" you were expecting is a delaying action by a tiny force, and everyone involved knows that it's doomed to fail. It simply isn't a gigantic battle along the lines of the Battle of Pelennor Fields, and it isn't supposed to be.

    MoL
    I agree with you here MoL; the emotion was there for me too. It certainly is just a last-ditch effort where there isn't so much organization but rather this desperate attempt where they struggle to "hold the lines" and are just trying to stay alive long enough. There is no expectation that any of them will survive. Plus there are a lot less of the good guys than there were in the Battle on the Pelennor. I found myself tearing up as some of my favorite NPCs are thrown across the battlefield by Nazgul and even seeing some rando NPC that I couldn't save die because I couldn't get him a weapon fast enough. That speech by Aragorn near the end just about did me in; and then the cut scene where we know the eagles are on the way made my heart swell with anticipation.

    You can't compare the 2 battles because they are completely different; one is a battle and the other is a suicide mission.
    Gwinthilnel: Elleth Hunter lvl 115~~~Hadniel: Woman Minstrel lvl 107~~~Gwynduilas: High Elleth Captain lvl 58 ~~~Gwindethen: Elleth Runekeeper lvl 23
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  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by katia0203 View Post
    You can't compare the 2 battles because they are completely different; one is a battle and the other is a suicide mission.
    And still, its a suicide mission that turns into a won battle. Even when the orcs flee in terror and fear, the easterlings still fight and the free people actually fight their battle till the end and win it. And even if its a suicide mission... why can we only have 5 minutes of it and not the whole fight? Why cant we fight from the beginning on? Not even a cutscene of the rest? nothing? we just fly away in the middle of the fight and it is won? why? so much wasted potential... If there was at least a sessionplay later, where we play one of the soldiers fighting till the end, if we ask some soldiers to tell us how the battle went on without us... I'd be fine with it. but its just so much completely left out which I'd like to have seen.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oelle View Post
    Why cant we fight from the beginning on? Not even a cutscene of the rest? nothing? we just fly away in the middle of the fight and it is won? why? so much wasted potential...
    One of the interesting things about adapting Middle-earth for a videogame is that you learn every single sentence in the book is someone's favorite; leave it out at your peril! I think wiping out the last of the Easterlings at the end of the Battle of the Black Gate would have been a poor dramatic choice, given what else was going on at the time; you really need to see the mop-up at the end of a battle? Hadn't we spent years doing just that in Rohan and in Gondor? But that's game design for you, and indeed creativity in general. Choosing what to include and what not to include is part of the challenge, and those three sentences never struck me as being crucial to see. They might be to you, but I disagree that there's all that much wasted potential here.

    I offer you a sentence that isn't my favorite, but seems useful to remember. It's from Sam, when he learns that he missed seeing the Oliphants at the Battle of Pelennor Fields:

    "'Well, one can't be everywhere at once, I suppose,' he said. 'But I missed a lot, seemingly.'"

    MoL

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    I offer you a sentence that isn't my favorite, but seems useful to remember. It's from Sam, when he learns that he missed seeing the Oliphants at the Battle of Pelennor Fields:

    "'Well, one can't be everywhere at once, I suppose,' he said. 'But I missed a lot, seemingly.'"

    MoL
    Well... we dont need to be everywhere at the same time.
    The game usually uses sessionplays or cutscenes or at least questtexts to show us things we missed

    If I misread something, my fault. But I dont even remember reading about how the battle ended afterwards, besides something along the lines of "yea, it went on a bit, you didnt miss anything". They could still all have died, even with Sauron being defeated. Enough enemies were present. And when I see how organized Mordor is, its hard to imagine that the free people beat that army. Without further explanation and having read the book, my character should think "okay, now we safe Frodo, but Aragorn and all those Soldiers are going to die." Gonna check those questtext again with my 9th or 10th character that will play through it soon... maybe those will even see some of the cutscenes that just didnt appear for 6 of 8 toons for me, because the game is bugged at least in german client. loka fixes? anytime soon? Mordor is still full of english stuff and afaik, those ~100 text issues in north ithilien are still present.

    It totally makes sense for our characters to go rescue Frodo instead of staying there and fighting till the end. But not even getting told how they survived is the same way weird like the cold murder we do for the Dwarf King.
    Last edited by Oelle; Feb 14 2018 at 04:03 PM.
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  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Oelle View Post

    ...like the cold murder we do for the Dwarf King.
    I hated this too.
    Gwinthilnel: Elleth Hunter lvl 115~~~Hadniel: Woman Minstrel lvl 107~~~Gwynduilas: High Elleth Captain lvl 58 ~~~Gwindethen: Elleth Runekeeper lvl 23
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