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The Mines will be ENORMOUS. Trust me, they will be big enough to get lost in very easily for a very long period of time
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.