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  1. #1

    regarding integrity of the epic plot line

    Radagast in Blomgard says that he is the one who taught Beornings the gift of skin-changing: Once there was a group of Men who respected the land and nature, and saw the beauty of the mountains and the vales between them. I was unlike them, of course, being a Wizard, but I did see some of myself in them. More than a little! I gave them a gift: the gift of skin-changing. I taught them how to use it, and as they practiced the art they became closer to nature, and I was most glad for them. They were a good people, and they remained so to this day: the Beornings of the Vales of Anduin (Quest: The Stolen Gift).

    Then how exactly could a Beorning participate in the War of the Great Alliance in the end of the Second Age (the Mordor Besieged epic quests) if Radagast hadn't arrived in Middle-Earth yet (he came to Middle-Earth in the Third Age)? And no, Radagast couldn't do that in the earlier Ages when he [supposedly] could walk Middle Earth as a Maya - he clearly states that he taught humans to turn to bears when he was a Wizard. In other words, a good thousand years AFTER the War of the Great Alliance.

    I am sure there is more loopholes and self-contradictions in the epic line but this one is the most recent in my memory.

  2. #2
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    Are you referring to Mordor Besieged?

    One major difference from session play is that we get to play ourselves as we actually are, not see ourselves in the form of someone that was actually there. Barring time travel this is less realistic but far more sensible. I for one wouldn't want to spend the length of time that Mordor Besieged takes playing a different class with different abilities. In fact i would hate that.

    A second major difference is that we get loot and experience from what we remember having happened an Age ago. Equally unrealistic but most of us would not want to spend day after day getting neither xp nor loot. So gameplay prevails over logic.

    So best to think of the whole episode as session play with two major compromises to reflect the fact that it is a very *long* session play that most players might dislike without those compromises.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by istvana View Post
    Are you referring to Mordor Besieged?

    One major difference from session play is that we get to play ourselves as we actually are, not see ourselves in the form of someone that was actually there. Barring time travel this is less realistic but far more sensible. I for one wouldn't want to spend the length of time that Mordor Besieged takes playing a different class with different abilities. In fact i would hate that.

    A second major difference is that we get loot and experience from what we remember having happened an Age ago. Equally unrealistic but most of us would not want to spend day after day getting neither xp nor loot. So gameplay prevails over logic.

    So best to think of the whole episode as session play with two major compromises to reflect the fact that it is a very *long* session play that most players might dislike without those compromises.
    Yes, Mordor Besieged. But it's not a session play, at least not fully. We don't play ourselves but we still play the same class and Isildur and others have lines explaining this to us (something like, "there used to be a Guardian/Hunter/Beorning similar to you in my time").

    Last but not least, Sauron himself has a line regarding the race of a player if he's a Beorning. It goes kinda like this: "You can change skins, I had a similar skill and it was useful for me"

    So yeah, there WAS a Beorning in the end of the Second Age according to the SSG's epic line. Although according to the same SSG, there couldn't be any Beornings in that time.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firin View Post
    Radagast in Blomgard says that he is the one who taught Beornings the gift of skin-changing: Once there was a group of Men who respected the land and nature, and saw the beauty of the mountains and the vales between them. I was unlike them, of course, being a Wizard, but I did see some of myself in them. More than a little! I gave them a gift: the gift of skin-changing. I taught them how to use it, and as they practiced the art they became closer to nature, and I was most glad for them. They were a good people, and they remained so to this day: the Beornings of the Vales of Anduin (Quest: The Stolen Gift).

    Then how exactly could a Beorning participate in the War of the Great Alliance in the end of the Second Age (the Mordor Besieged epic quests) if Radagast hadn't arrived in Middle-Earth yet (he came to Middle-Earth in the Third Age)? And no, Radagast couldn't do that in the earlier Ages when he [supposedly] could walk Middle Earth as a Maya - he clearly states that he taught humans to turn to bears when he was a Wizard. In other words, a good thousand years AFTER the War of the Great Alliance.

    I am sure there is more loopholes and self-contradictions in the epic line but this one is the most recent in my memory.
    The whole plotline of Radagast teaching Beornings the gift of skin changing is made up by the developers anyway, it was never written that way by Tolkien. Now there's nothing wrong with the devs adding little subplots to the main story from time to time, in fact it's quite necessary at times to fill in the blanks left by the author. To say that the "integrity" of the plot has been compromised is a bit rich though, considering the whole bit about how and when the Beornings became skin changers was never part of the story to begin with.
    “If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went.”
    - Will Rogers

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfhelm View Post
    The whole plotline of Radagast teaching Beornings the gift of skin changing is made up by the developers anyway, it was never written that way by Tolkien. Now there's nothing wrong with the devs adding little subplots to the main story from time to time, in fact it's quite necessary at times to fill in the blanks left by the author. To say that the "integrity" of the plot has been compromised is a bit rich though, considering the whole bit about how and when the Beornings became skin changers was never part of the story to begin with.
    i never said they can't add their own subplots, i'm just saying their sub-plot contradicts their own main plot. All they had/have to do is change the Radagast lines in the Blomgard quest, make him say that he taught Beornings their gift when he was wandering Middle-Earth before the First Age or something.

  6. #6
    That is a good catch and certainly a contradiction. Even if it is minor and probably due to the convenience of gameplay. It would be more work for them to pretend you are some other class in terms of the story in Mordor besieged.

    If we were to explain it away the way Tolkien would we could say that Radagast didn't invent beornings. He simply learned the lore of skin changing and taught it to others. So there may have been some Beorning alive in the time of the Last Alliance who found the knowledge through independent means or passed down through their people. They at some point teach Radagast who then passes it on to the new Beornings.

    From The Hobbit, Beorn is supposed to be the last of his kind. In LOTR we meet his son Grimbeorn and there are supposedly others whom he leads. But how many could one Beorn have populated himself? There are quite a lot in lotro (especially if you assume each one really represents many more since lotro doesn't tend to have high npc counts in towns). You could argue that Radagast stepped in at some point to teach many others the secret ways of skin changing to help repopulate this line of people.

    There are similar contradictions or maybe inconsistencies with Hobbits in the story throughout the game. Many people who should never have heard of hobbits seem to know all about them and are nonchalant about sending off to do their quests.

  7. #7
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    From what I understand, middle earth have people who change their skin for thousands years, but they can't do it for their own will and can't teach others how do it. Like Hulk in Marvel, when Dr Banner angry, he turns into Hulk, but he spend a lot of time to learn how change from Banner to Hulk on his own decision. Radagast don't invest beornings, he just improve them and help them live like a tribe and defend land what they like. Don't think it's easy live like a tribe when one of members of your tribe can random turns into bear and start attacking everyone and destroying their houses. In many ways, Lotro doesn't goes against something was put into books by Tolkein, they just explain it more deeply and add more pieces into that.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Elmagor View Post
    From what I understand, middle earth have people who change their skin for thousands years, but they can't do it for their own will and can't teach others how do it. Like Hulk in Marvel, when Dr Banner angry, he turns into Hulk, but he spend a lot of time to learn how change from Banner to Hulk on his own decision. Radagast don't invest beornings, he just improve them and help them live like a tribe and defend land what they like. Don't think it's easy live like a tribe when one of members of your tribe can random turns into bear and start attacking everyone and destroying their houses..
    Uh....yeah no: The books never really explained how beornings could shape shift and no shape shifting wasn't a thing which existed for thousands of years in the LOTR lore.

    Only shape shifters mentioned were those like Sauron so basically the maiar or valar and those of firstborn blood or man who could shape shift were able to because of the valar. and only for just that moment.

  9. #9
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    Gandalf is present in the Second Age, what's to say that Radagast is not also so present in some guise and that the "I taught them skin changing" in essence refers to an event millennia before the cuirrent timeframe?

    The Ainur are beyond our understanding.
    Mithithil Ithryndi

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by BigLotroFan View Post
    From The Hobbit, Beorn is supposed to be the last of his kind.

    From the Hobbit: "I have been picking out bear-tracks," he said at last. "There must have been a regular bears' meeting outside here last night. I soon saw that Beorn could not have made them all; there were far too many of them, and they were of various sizes too. I should say there were little bears, large bears, ordinary bears, and gigantic bears, all dancing outside from dark to nearly dawn."
    Casual R Us - Garatha

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Mithithil View Post
    Gandalf is present in the Second Age, what's to say that Radagast is not also so present in some guise and that the "I taught them skin changing" in essence refers to an event millennia before the cuirrent timeframe?

    The Ainur are beyond our understanding.
    That's a big stretch. Radagast says about what did as a Wizard as my quote quite explicitly says. Radagast arrived as a Wizard a thousand years after the War of the Last Alliance.
    Gandalf was in Middle-Earth in the 2nd Age according to Mordor Besieged but he was in another disguise - and so would be Radagast (because otherwise the arrival of - specifically - Wizards wouldn't be a big deal.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firin View Post
    Then how exactly could a Beorning participate in the War of the Great Alliance in the end of the Second Age (the Mordor Besieged epic quests) if Radagast hadn't arrived in Middle-Earth yet (he came to Middle-Earth in the Third Age)?
    Very early on in the LotRO storyline it was made clear that Wizards arrived much, *much* earlier than they do in Tolkien's canon. Specifically, it is said by Radagast that the Gaunt Lords were made *by Morgoth* in mockery of the Wizards, which is obviously impossible if the Wizards didn't exist as Wizards when Morgoth was around to make anything.

    In LotRO, Wizards have been around since the First Age, and were active in the Second Age. In LotR, they are Third Age only.

    Radagast states this round-abouts the epic storyline in the Lone Lands, so it's quite early on. It is one of the clear departures LotRO has made from LotR, either because they weren't careful enough combing through the appendices or because they decided that since most of the information on the Istari is in books they don't have the license to use, they would choose to depart on this particular bit in order to make it obvious they were not pulling from books they don't have the license to use.
    Last edited by Starsmith; Jan 25 2021 at 09:05 PM.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Starsmith View Post
    Very early on in the LotRO storyline it was made clear that Wizards arrived much, *much* earlier than they do in Tolkien's canon. Specifically, it is said by Radagast that the Gaunt Lords were made *by Morgoth* in mockery of the Wizards, which is obviously impossible if the Wizards didn't exist as Wizards when Morgoth was around to make anything.

    In LotRO, Wizards have been around since the First Age, and were active in the Second Age. In LotR, they are Third Age only.

    Radagast states this round-abouts the epic storyline in the Lone Lands, so it's quite early on. It is one of the clear departures LotRO has made from LotR, either because they weren't careful enough combing through the appendices or because they decided that since most of the information on the Istari is in books they don't have the license to use, they would choose to depart on this particular bit in order to make it obvious they were not pulling from books they don't have the license to use.
    Does he really say that? Havent found his lines on this on the wiki.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firin View Post
    Does he really say that? Havent found his lines on this on the wiki.
    If the wiki is correct, he does really say that.
    https://lotro-wiki.com/index.php/Que...the_Blood-hand

  15. #15
    I would say this is a valid 'plot hole', nice catch, Madeoflions may even retcon it out in the future but doubt it will be top of his priority list.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starsmith View Post
    Very early on in the LotRO storyline it was made clear that Wizards arrived much, *much* earlier than they do in Tolkien's canon. Specifically, it is said by Radagast that the Gaunt Lords were made *by Morgoth* in mockery of the Wizards, which is obviously impossible if the Wizards didn't exist as Wizards when Morgoth was around to make anything.

    In LotRO, Wizards have been around since the First Age, and were active in the Second Age. In LotR, they are Third Age only.

    Radagast states this round-abouts the epic storyline in the Lone Lands, so it's quite early on. It is one of the clear departures LotRO has made from LotR, either because they weren't careful enough combing through the appendices or because they decided that since most of the information on the Istari is in books they don't have the license to use, they would choose to depart on this particular bit in order to make it obvious they were not pulling from books they don't have the license to use.
    Morgoth know about Maiar, of course, and all 5 wizards was Maiar. Morgoth maybe even know them from the past. Gaunt Lords can be mockery of Maiar.

  17. #17
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    Up to a point (and overthinking is the real risk) the various Maiar are sent in part as "agents" of various Valar to have some focus on areas of interest to the Vala in question. Olorin - Manwe and Varda, Curumo - Aule, Aiwendil- Yavanna, and implied that the Blue Wizards - Orome. Those concerns will have existed throughout the Ages, just perhpas were more fomalised when the various Maiar were sent in their guise as Wizards in the Third Age. I accept that the whole "Olorin present in Mordor Beseiged" bit probably relates to the later statement of Gandalf being afraid of Sauron but it does seem to leave the door open for some of the other Maiar to have been present. No doubt the destruction of the Brown Lands and the implied loss of the Entwives would have been a matter of especial importance to Yavanna and having an agent on the spot to mitigate or save what coul be saved seems perfectly plausible.

    Begs the question of what might Curumo have been up to unbeknownst. No doubt the activities of the Mirdain would have been of especial interest, likewise the expansion of industry on Numenor during the final corruption.
    Mithithil Ithryndi

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firin View Post
    Then how exactly could a Beorning participate in the War of the Great Alliance in the end of the Second Age (the Mordor Besieged epic quests) if Radagast hadn't arrived in Middle-Earth yet (he came to Middle-Earth in the Third Age)?
    Easily enough: the character who fought alongside the Great Alliance possessed the art of skin-changing independently of Radagast, and indeed wasn't a Beorning at all. I wrote a good deal of extra, alternate text to avoid using the word 'Beorning' during that sequence (and if I missed a spot, that's a bug for sure!). The way it works in my head (although I can't speak for every designer) is that Radagast didn't *invent* skin-changing, but gifted it to one family during the Third Age as a sign of his affection for them in particular.

    MoL

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    Easily enough: the character who fought alongside the Great Alliance possessed the art of skin-changing independently of Radagast, and indeed wasn't a Beorning at all. I wrote a good deal of extra, alternate text to avoid using the word 'Beorning' during that sequence (and if I missed a spot, that's a bug for sure!). The way it works in my head (although I can't speak for every designer) is that Radagast didn't *invent* skin-changing, but gifted it to one family during the Third Age as a sign of his affection for them in particular.

    MoL
    I remember you talking about that! The bigger issue with Beornings participating in the Last Alliance isn't Radagast, it's *Beorn*!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elmagor View Post
    Morgoth know about Maiar, of course, and all 5 wizards was Maiar. Morgoth maybe even know them from the past. Gaunt Lords can be mockery of Maiar.
    Morgoth doesn't need to mock Maiar, he's got loads and loads of them already in his employ. See: Sauron, Balrogs.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starsmith View Post
    Morgoth doesn't need to mock Maiar, he's got loads and loads of them already in his employ. See: Sauron, Balrogs.
    He mock maiar from other side because they don't want follow his lead, and since all maiar who follow Morgoth don't looks like wizards, they don't think what that joke can affect them

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    Easily enough: the character who fought alongside the Great Alliance possessed the art of skin-changing independently of Radagast, and indeed wasn't a Beorning at all. I wrote a good deal of extra, alternate text to avoid using the word 'Beorning' during that sequence (and if I missed a spot, that's a bug for sure!). The way it works in my head (although I can't speak for every designer) is that Radagast didn't *invent* skin-changing, but gifted it to one family during the Third Age as a sign of his affection for them in particular.

    MoL
    lol @ people thinking they're going to catch MoL in a gotcha.
    Arda Shrugged - Elendilstone / Landroval / Anor

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by MadeOfLions View Post
    Easily enough: the character who fought alongside the Great Alliance possessed the art of skin-changing independently of Radagast, and indeed wasn't a Beorning at all. I wrote a good deal of extra, alternate text to avoid using the word 'Beorning' during that sequence (and if I missed a spot, that's a bug for sure!). The way it works in my head (although I can't speak for every designer) is that Radagast didn't *invent* skin-changing, but gifted it to one family during the Third Age as a sign of his affection for them in particular.

    MoL
    ha you sly dog that works i guess.

 

 

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