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They are called "Haradrim." I am afraid that for 1.0, evil races will not be playable, Haradrim and Easterlings included. So long as the war is on, Haradrim and Easterlings will attack good guys on sight. After the war is completely over, then things will change and they won't, for the most part.
The mountains aren't all snow, they are a light limestone (that is where the Ered Nimrais get their name). Also, it is a very large area you are looking at, namely West Fold. Most horse herds live in the Emnets, which are even larger. So even though there are a lot of horses, there would still be plenty of grass ;) . Also, this is how the books describe most of Rohan: vast, green fields.
We aren't going to be doing it like we did in Oblivion. We will explain more later, but the way we are doing it will give you a playable version of MERP much faster. However, we are debating releasing the heightmap to explore freely, but no promises on that.
I assume you mean the Oblivion to Skyrim comparison? That is for several reasons. One is that totally different methods were used in the development of each. Second is that we intentionally made Skyrim's mountains shorter, because the Oblivion mountains' size just made them take up way too much space. Thirdly, the new one is traced straight off of an actual LOTR map and Maegfaer made large usage of the Atlas of Middle Earth to determine how terain should be, so things are much more detailed from the start.
We don't make estimates. However, our development plan, which will be detailed when this page is completely finished, will allow for playable (as in, fully playable, not just landscapes) releases in a much, much more timely manner than Oblivion. Hopefully that satisfies your curiosity.
After the War ends, Gondor and Arnor are reunited. The restoration of Arnor, the rebuilding of Osgiliath, and the establishment of the new city at Emyn Arnen will all be simulated in 1.0. The player will be able to help with this restoration.
That is part of the purpose. It is also more rewarding for us to see our works come to fruition. Also, development this way will be smoother and faster than it ever was in Oblivion.
Instruction manual 2, Clueless users 0
Nehrim also refused to use the region generator, which slowedtheir development quite a bit.
We already have. Search MERP under mods, and we have our Skyrim page up already ;)
Aragorn is pretty close to pure Numenorean and he will be carrying it, unless the player, by some stroke of luck, manages to kill him.
We will have a paper map by default, but the Skyrim version will be kept in as an option the player can choose. It isn't any problem to keep since it is created automatically.
Blending Howard Shores live orchestra music with ours, which is created with computer programs, just won't work. When played separate from each other, they don't sound all that different in some cases. But if you blend them together, they will clash awfully.
Well, we will keep those suggestions in mind, but understand that the ringbearer and white council quest lines are a long ways off. We have discussed main quests for each race, but decided it was just WAY too much work. That is part of the reason for the white council quest. It has a backstory quest for each race that intros you into the main white council questline. We will have all side quests open at all times though. The world changes significantly after the black gate, so having the player wait till after that would invalidate a lot oc potential quest situations.
Howard Shire is boss but we can't use his music. We would get in trouble and besides, most of his music is scene specific and not very useful in an open game world. We are making our own misic which I assure you will be plenty epic. And ues, we will use vanilla or slightly modified Skyrim resources where appropriate, though where we can and when it is needed, we will have custom assets.
Well, the Ringbearer can vary. It could take as long as the books record to destroy the ring. Or the player could somehow manage to do it sooner. However, The White Council will last as long as the war does, with the player helping the Free Peoples across middle Earth. Free Roam is just you and the game for however long you want :P.
That is something we are still discussing. He will likely be killable eventually in the quest, once you reach a point where it makes little difference. I will say that he does die in the end either way though.
We will give more info on our development plans when this page is completed.
Tomato IS Isilmeriel. Same person that created Amon Sul for us. In fact, on Skyrim Nexus, you can see that in one of her new pics of Sauron's Mace, she is standing in Amon Sul.
So no, we didn't steal anyone's work ;)
We would never get permission I am afraid. Also, the movies soundtrack is not designed for game use and most of the songs are event specific, meaning that they are not designed to portray an over-arching mood but rather to aid in the telling of a specific event. Game music is designed to aid in giving a region a particular feel or mood, and that is the type of music we need.
However, it should also be noted that diverging from the books will, generally speaking, be the harder way. It is not a gameplay issue that causes this, but rather the working together of events during the book's timeline. When one examines the books, it can be seen that events so worked out that Frodo came to Mordor through the one passage that was realistically feasible at the one point in time where there was any chance of reaching Mt Doom undetected. If the player diverges from the book's path, he will have to find his own way within the events that will take place.
Not a tower, a mountain. It was a called Meneltarma. Legend has it that the summit, hallowed by one of the Valar (it was either Yavana or Varda, can't remember which (though I am relatively sure it was Varda)), didn't sink by became an island in the sea. However, no one has ever found it and returned. My personal theory as to why is that the peak lies on the edge of the two worlds, the Straight path which leads to Aman, and the bent path that leads around the world (the bent path is the world as it was after the Fall); as such the Isle of Meneltarma may or may not be found in either waters. It is said though, that men who die at see will come to/pass by that island and see affar the white shores of Aman before finally dying and departing from Arda. But then, that is just legend.
Not too far back in the grand scheme of things. What we lost is not too hard to replicate in Skyrim. Also, what we had was still a very long ways from a truly "playable" version. So in the long run, it isn't too much of a setback. And we couldn't have kept what we had and get the new heightmap, so it seems a fair exchange in my opinion.
On top of that, Numenor is sunk by the Third Age, Aman has been removed from the circles of the World, the New Lands in the distant east/west are uninhabbited, and we honestly haven't much info on what goes on out there. Even if we could, by some miracle, make a mod that occupied that much space, filling it effectively would be very dificult. Don't worry, there are a lot of things to see just in these regions. Pinnath Gellin, Dol Amroth, Pelargir (done right, unlike Peter Jackson's tumble-down shack version), Erebor, and many, many more will be in MERP in their entirety.
They went east, which is (sadly) beyond the boundaries of our map. Perhaps we will figure out a way before 1.0 though, so it may be possible to see them even though the map won't include Rhun.
No they let him go. He could never have escaped on his own. And Aragorn only pardoned those who surrendered at the Black Gate. The books talk about Aragorn and Eomer fighting in campaigns abroad. There are still corrupt regimes in place set up by Sauron to deal with.
About ten times the size of Skyrim. So...A LOT bigger ;)
To put it in perspective, Rohan will be about the same size as Skyrim.
Middle Earth is rougly ten times the size of Skyrim. We will enhance combat by first adding spears and mounted combat and later a Mount&Blade inspired combat system. This system will be optional, but the spears and mounted combat will be standard. Throwing weapons are also a posibility.
Well, the reclamation of Moria happens some time later under the rain of Durin VII, long after the events of the War. So that will not be in. However, we could have a small expedition after the war, in which the player could have a part.
Ered Nimrais, the mountains of Gondor. It is close to the western end I think, near Andrast
This is the most basic sword in the Thenodrim lineup. There will be more ornate designs in some areas of course. But our art direction isn't the type to go insane with the crazy designs. There will be armors with more flare, especially ancient sets, but they will be rare loot.
Also the Engine as a Service subscription system that CE3 released is a huge disappointment. Really hurts more than helps indies. UE4 is very user friendly and the subscription system is very good and indie friendly
Well this EaaS is a colossal disappointment. Way to screw over your hobbyist fans while simultaneously doing very little for your indie fans all under the guise of being "indie friendly."
Definitely hear you on that. The First Look series just does such a broad sweep, far beyond areas that are currently the focus of development. We will have more to show on that end soon.
I really like the lighting and the almost painting like feel. Gives the world a mystifying air, really draws you in. Excellent work, can't wait to see more
"But I am different from the others! I will create a better world than any that came before me!"
A huge shout out from us at Epoch Games to everyone who voted to get Lays of Althas: Sundered Order in the Top 100 in its first ever IOTY competition! You've shown a lot of confidence in us early on and we are going to strive not to let you down! :)
Actually, for the middle ages this is about right xD
But another thing to keep in mind is that this individual might be of a heavy/stocky build. Which would create an illusion of shortness. But of course, it's not lije everyone who is wearing this in game will look exactly the same in terms of height and build anyway :P
You will have to wait and see. And I apologize for all the terms. I have been trying to keep it limited but a lot of these were kinda necessary.
Thanks. Glad to see these lore posts aren't boring you all to tears xD
There will be in engine and asset images and demonstrations as soon as they're ready, we promise ;)
Yeah the pictures not being there is partly because magic and its related groups and factions aren't our focus so concept art for them is not being developed right now. However, this is by far the most bland post in the three part series :P . Origins almost always are...well kinda dull. Hopefully, you will find the next two more interesting. If not, well...next week will be a new subject :P
Note that the sword in this concept isn't the final, but sort of a placeholder. The finish on the plates of the armor is a type of white cracked paint.
Tim is one of our newer members, so expect to see more of his work in the future.
Landmass, it is several times the size. Thenodar is about the size of Skyrim.
OOOooooooh. That was a formatting error when the post was created. And Moddb brilliantly has no reliable way to undo that after the post is made.
Just in case you hadn't noticed, this isn't part of the "First Look" series but a special post. There was a delay in the next "First Look" post, so we decided to give you a special little bit about Thenodar in the interim. The next post in the "First Look" series will be coming soon: The Kingdom of Anorthile
The engine is vastly superior in almost every respect. Screenshots will come in due time. The first will most likely be screens demonstrating assets in engine such as new foliage, architecture, or armor.
Well one thing we wanted was a variety of landscapes. Vast plains is one of the things that many games lack ;)
There's another image in the vid this is from without a helmet; looks much better.
I think the part where it tailors the loot to your play style is a bit...too much? I would suggest simply making hard to find chests have nice stuff worth a good amount of money. And have a legitimate use for money of course.
Mortal Online just went Free to Play: Mortalonline.com
I might have to really give this a shot now
Well...That can't be good.
Perhaps also add some large graveyards scattered around, from long battles where the dead needed to be buried near the place of battle?
And very nice work here ;)
Note that the houses seen here are unmodified. The final version will have modified Whiterun houses, so it will better fit Rohan.
This is actually Angatur, a frontier fort in northern Rohan.
It is a fishing village actually. ;)
Played Skyrim much :P
These are MERP original designs, the first original weapons to be made and placed in game! :D From top to bottom they are:
Rohan Officer's Sword
Eastern Rohan Soldier's Sword
Sword of Erkenbrand (for which we have yet to think of a name :P)
we may add it as a realism mode option. Weapons outright breaking is kinda silly though :P
And yes, it is a spear. Eowyn's spear, which will also function as the officer's spear for people like Eomer, Erkenbrand, etc.
"Holy mother of Varda!" screamed the player three minutes later, after being reduced to cinders on the ground :P
I think you misplaced this comment names :P
Actually, those are the Ered Nimrais, the White Mountains. The mountain in the center is Starkhorn :P
This is Gondor seen from Dol Amroth.
That is a good question. It was wielded both ways in the books. So it could go either way.
That latter part is debatable, but the CK is more than enough to get me excited :D
Lothlorien lamp by Conlan. And yes, it is awesome;)
Yep. This is the Knight of Dol Amroth armor. The Dol Amroth Men at Arms armor will be different and a little lighter, but with the same helmet and shield.
lol that joke is gonna get old before Skyrim even comes out! :P
Wow. That guard has some serious balls.
Now THAT is a shrine!
Hmmm. Not entirely true. The Gondorians are actually the Numenoreans in Exile. Numenoreans were a monotheistic culture according to the Akalabeth, worshipping Eru (Illuvitar), the God in the Middle Earth cosmology. However, I doubt they built churches. The Numenoreans only worshipped in a small grove on the upper slopes of Meneltarma without a temple. A similar place is described on the slopes of Mindoluin above Minas Tirith.
Beautiful design! These knights look awesome. The swords are beautiful as well; I remember seeing the concept for them way back.
The engine does look very impressive. What is more impressive is that this is XBox 360 quality. If they can get that kinda quality out of the 360, I can't wait to see what can be done on a computer with mods!
LOL this is an epic fail. I hope some one fixes this...
Sort of. It will be taller. However, it will still have a somewhat elegant form as it is Numenorean (Gondorian/Arnorian) in style.
They are separate. However, the final won't be like that; way too many polies. Also, this was created to help make the destroyed version. The actual rebuilt version won't be exactly like what you see here.
If it doesn't, we all deserve to get slapped. I mean, this is Middle Earth! (but then again, that didn't help EA very much...) Don't get me wrong, Nehrim is very epic. But I for one am confident MERP will top it.
In the movies it was but the book makes no such refrence. The people are describex as decent but simple folk. The only one noted as dirty and untidy was the scoundrel Bill Ferny.