The Edain Mod aims to take you deeper into Middle-Earth than ever before and turn the Battle for Middle-Earth II into a game worthy of Tolkien's books and Peter Jackson's movies. In our quest for lore accuracy, visual quality and deeper gameplay, we overhauled every aspect of the original game to craft a new and immersive Lord of the Rings experience.

Master the One Ring

While the One Ring has no lord but Sauron, there have always been those who sought to use its power for their own ends. In Edain, you no longer bring the Ring to your fortress to unlock just Sauron or Galadriel. Instead, you can give it directly to select heroes who will attempt to draw upon its powers, with varying consequences. Each faction has different Ring Heroes, allowing you to discover what could have been if Saruman the White had attained the One Ring, or if Denethor and Boromir had foolishly decided to use it as a weapon against the Enemy...

Fight Side by Side with the Heroes of the Third Age

The fate of Middle-Earth has always been shaped by great heroes and villains, many of which never appeared in a Battle for Middle-Earth game before. Edain gives you the opportunity to stand in battle with new heroes like Thorin Oakenshield and his companions, Beregond and Imrahil or the sons of Elrond. Those with evil in their hearts may instead choose to share in the power of villains like Smaug or the Necromancer of Dol Guldur...

Furthermore, every existing hero has received new abilities and mechanics to more accurately represent his role in the books and movies. Aragorn, for instance, will start out as the ranger Strider and go from the defender of Helm's Deep to King Elessar of Gondor over the course of the game, gaining new abilities each time he takes a new step towards his destiny. Similiarly, Theoden will now accurately transform from a defeated pawn under Saruman's control to the heroic king who fought on the Pelennor fields.

Command New Factions

Rohan and Lothlorien have been split from the Gondor and Rivendell factions to form new factions in their own right. The Rohirrim are a people of riders, evidenced by their powerful cavalry units, including the Royal Guard. Their infantry and archery are poor, but they can receive signifant aid from the inn by recruiting Elven archers and Druadan warriors. The Woodland Realm, on the other hand, lacks cavalry altogether. To compensate, they rely on unorthodox tactics such as stealth, speed and elven magic coupled with their formidable archers. They cannot easily expand their base, but all buildings are manned by archers to keep invaders at bay. Units like the animal empaths, who slow down enemy cavalry, and elven chanters, who support your army through their songs, provide veterans with exciting new strategies to master. Both factions also come with a completely unique set of spells, including powerful finishers like the Rohan spell, Last March of the Ents, which summons Treebeard and a host of Ents to your side.

Rediscover the Old Factions

All factions have been expanded with a large array of new units. Among them are the Gondor Citadel Guard, Lurtz's Uruk Scouts, Haldir's Galadhrim from the Battle for Helm's Deep and Orcs of Minas Morgul. All in all, Edain allows you to assemble your forces from a pool of twice as many units as before.

Furthermore, almost all existing units and heroes have received visual overhauls to eliminate issues like golden armor on Orcs and bring the visual style closer to the movies. For example, Aragorn will now wield the actual Anduril blade upon purchasing the respective spell instead of getting an exaggerated blue glow around his sword. Head to our gallery for more examples of the improvements we have made.

Follow your destiny... Middle-Earth awaits.

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Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: The Road to Edain 4.0: The Maps, Part 3

2 comments by FG15 on Dec 19th, 2014

The Road to Edain 4.0: The Maps, Part 3


Greetings companions of Edain!

Today it is time for the third part of our map updates, and we will present you four new maps.

Brandywine

The Brandywine, elvish Baranduin, is a river in Eriador, separating Buckland and the Shire.
The map Brandywine, which already could be seen in the Beta Stream, is designed in particular for multiplayer games. Originally created for 3.81, the map will be included in version 4.0 with only small changes. The map is dominated by the river Brandywine.
Both players start at different banks of the river, but each player is near one of the big fords, one in the north of the map and one in the south, thus allowing the player to cross the river. Between the two players there are 4 wide paths, one at each bank of the river and at the edge of the map. In between, there hills separating the different paths.
Due to the fact that the map is point-symmetric, the attractivity of the different paths varies for each player, so it might happen easily that the both players take different ways to the enemy and walk past each other. While on other maps, you often end up with entrenched battle lines in the middle of the map because it is the direct path from one player to the other, on this map there are two equivalent ways between the two players.

This way, if a player dares to attack his enemy, then he has to pay attention that while moving towards the enemy on one path, the enemy won't use the other path and catch him unaware. But to prevent the whole game from consisting of two players constantly marching past each other and never clashing on the field at all, there are some additional points of interest.
In the center of the map, there is a small island in the middle of the map with a capturable settlement. This settlement can be reached from both paths at the river bank, and controlling this settlement makes it easier to control both paths. Also, each player has access to an outpost at the other side of the ford, guarding one of the outer ways and allowing the player to gain strength at this side. In particular, in the later game this leads to a dynamic gameplay, because there is a good attack path for each player at each side. A path which is backed up either by the own camp or outpost, thus allowing a retreat to gather strength, while it is not as easy for the enemy to defend this path.

If you wonder what these awkward circles on the map are supposed to be, these are mapping objects that define the positions of settlements, outposts and camps in the game.

Tharbad

An old city in the southern parts of Eriador at the confluence of Glanduin and Mitheitel. The Old North Road crossed the river Mitheitel here. In the year 2912, Tharbad was destroyed by a flood and never reoccupied again.
Tharbad is another rework version of an older map (Dorwinion) that can be found in the presentation board of our forums, but this rework was much bigger in scope. Every mapper develops over time, and the map Dorwinion was the first playable map that I ever have created, even before I knew about the Edain Mod. The first version with aedequate textures was finished three years ago. The basic structure of the map was a symmetric map for four players, intersected by many canals that could be crossed by different bridges.

Though, the mapping technique back then was, let us call it creative. The problem was not even that too few textures were used or that a texture was used for too large areas, but the opposite. A different texture was applied to almost every pixel, causing many problems like errors with the transitions between different textures. Furthermore, large parts of the map were created with the copy tool from the Worldbuilder, so the map had many textures but nonetheless looked the same nearly everywhere. Moreover, the bridges were a large problem, because they either collapsed in the middle of a battle or it was difficult to cross them.


Adjusting it for version 4.0, at first I tried to keep as much of the map as possible and only add some elements or make small changes. But due to the basic structure of the map this was not possible at all. No matter what I tried, the landscape looked just unrealistic.

What we really liked about the map was the basic concept. There are two different paths to each neighbour. One of these ways led to the start point of the other player, but did not offer anything special. The other way is slightly longer, but features two settlements and one outpost. That path also opens up into a wide plain, perfect for larger battles. Moreover, we liked the huge island in the middle of the map, which was well guarded by creeps but offered a good expansion option for all players.

So we attempted to keep these elements (the passability of the map and the place of the expansion points) for the update, but completely redo everything else. The first step was to remove any other objects on the map, to flatten the map, and to delete all the textures.

The most difficult thing was to find a fitting setting for the map. Of course every map needs a basic theme, usually a place somewhere in Middle-Earth. For this map we needed something instead of the canals which fits better in a natural environment, but does block the passibility like the canals did. Mountains or hills were not possible in general, because the quadratic structure of the map, was the opposite of a natural mountain landscape. The next idea were lava streams in Mordor. But that that wasn't ideal either, because lava streams still would need to be crossed on bridges, which we wanted to avoid.

The last possibility was to fill the impassible areas with objects to block the way. The easiest way to do so would be with buildings in a town. Also, this idea overlapped with the wish to create a Tharbad map, which should be filled with ruins and should be under the water levels in many areas. This map-setting had many advantages. First of all, it was possible to use rivers as well as deep floodings, being deep enough that it would be impossible to pass them, as natural barriers. Moreover, the ruin-complexes allowed to restrict the passability of the map, and to keep the basic structure of the map.

For finally building the map, we chose the Osgiliath as a theme for the map composition. Because, which is the first map any player remembers, when he hears name ruin-map. For the form of the finished map, it was important that the player got the impression that he is playing in the ruins of an old dignified town. Ruins should be everywhere, without blocking the passability at places where they should not. Also it was important that the player should be able to orientate himself on the map. So, the river is a good sign for the player, to estimate his actual position, as well as the design of the map itself.

When creating the map, it was on of the main goals to make the map versatile and varied. So the player in the south-west of the map, starts at a large square surrounded by ruins, but partly reconquered by the nature. In the north-west of the map there are rests of an old park and palace-complex In the north-east the player starts at an old road at the bank of the river, leading into town and in the south-east the player is on a plain outside of the ancient city. Each region of the map looks different, but nonetheless the situation for all the players on the map is the same. No starting position has any advantages, or disadvantages. And due to the many settlements in the middle of the map, Tharbad is very suitable for the Conquest-Mode, too.

Dor-En-Ernil

Dor-En-Ernil is a region in southern Gondor, at the Bay of Belfalas.
The map Dor-En-Ernil is based on two different things. First of all on a study of the map Umbar, where I tried to acquire and improve the map-style as good as possible.
On the other hand, this drawing was a concept-art for parts of the map:


The map is the result of an alteration of parts of the map Umbar. So, the right border of the map corresponds with the left border of Umbar. Starting there, the map was expanded, trying to keep the map-style as good as possible, and after that the map was mirrored to get a symmetric map. Afterwards the middle of the map and the borders were created. Also, on the parts from the original maps, there were made several changes to adjust these parts to the newer parts of the map. The result is a map that is characterized by hills, cliffs and coves.

All in all, the structure of this map is quite unusual. The map is quite large, but the distance between the starting positions of the two payers is as small as on no other map for 2 players. Also it takes some time to get to certain parts of the map.
The result is a big position battle between the camps of the two players, Both players have a safe outpost, increasing their strength in battle, but the settlements get even more important.

For each player there is only one easy capturable settlement at the beginning, all the others are either guarded by creeps or they are too far away. So, if a player needs more resources than he can get normally, he has to conquer the Plateau in the middle of the map, offering 5 settlements which are nearly 50% of all the settlements on the map. Due to the fact that the main entrance to the plateau is near the battle field, many battles take place at the plateau, too. Also, the back entrance, which connects the outposts of both players might be extremely useful for surprise attacks.

Overall, the map offers a completely different ingame experience than most other maps, because the players will be permanently in combat, but nonetheless the map may be played in multiplayer games, too. Due to central places of many settlements in middle of the map, this is also a map perfectly working with the Conquest-mode. The player who manages to conquer and keep the plateau, will win very probably, as long as the enemy does not overrun his camp in the time.

West-Nurn

The western part of Nurn extends from the Ephel Duath till the Shadow Sea.
Because, in Edain 4.0 6-player maps usually won't be suitable for playing 2 vs 3, it is necessary that the next version will contain some maps extra designed for this number of players. West-Nurn is such a map. Like Dor-En-Ernil, West-Nurn is a map-study, too, this time one of the map Mordor. Therefore, attentive viewers may recognize parts of the original map Mordor, at the right border of the map West-Nurn, as well as the sea. Nonetheless most of the original map has been reworked to adjust it to the new parts.

West-Nurn is a rugged land marked by dark rocks and barren landscape. In particular, at the left side of the map, the area between the different teams is separated by a gorge in the south and by hills in the north, so that there are only few possibilities to pass this area. Opposite, the east of the map is a large plain. Because, the 2-player team starts in the south of the map, this side offers relatively more settlements per player, to compensate the disadvantage. Also, each team has only one outpost.

The structure of the map, causes that the player in the middle of the 3-player team can decide which enemy he likes to attack, or even if he tries to break through in the middle and attack his enemies from behind.

On the last two images, you can see the transition between the original map and the self-created parts:

We hope that you liked the new maps, and we are looking forward to your feedback.
Also we want to thank everyone who has already voted for us at the MotY-awards, or will vote for us.

Your Edain Team

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Edain Mod 3.8.1

Edain Mod 3.8.1

Aug 31, 2012 Full Version 560 comments

This full version contains all files you need to play the latest version of the Edain Mod. Please read the Readme before playing! The Readme contains...

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Guest Jul 29 2013, 1:26pm says:

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Johnny595
Johnny595 Jul 29 2013, 2:29pm replied:

I don't think it would be good for gameplay ^^. Valars are the ultimate beings on Tolkien's stories. They can easily destroy or create anything they wish. If Aule himself was to appear on ME it would be the most miraculous event ever to happen in Third Age :o. I'd say something about the dwarves mighty strenght, that partially came from Aule, would be better, lore and gameplay speaking. Like a spell called Aule's Blessing or likeso, that would give the dwarves a major global temporary damage/hp boost, such as darkness to goblins, to replace Lone tower, Barrage or even Citadel (? :D)

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Gnomi Creator
Gnomi Jul 29 2013, 5:07pm replied:

That sounds much better. We won't summon any Valar, as that wouldn't fit into the game...^^
The temporary boost sounds ebtter, as we also try to get rid of such aoe spells, as the "dwarven valar idea guy" mentioned... it's just a horrible gameplay, just imagine that you've build up an army for the past 10 minutes and the enemy just sues this ability... this just eliminates every piece of fun...^^
A temporary boost sounds better, but a bit boring in my opinion, as it would be just a stronger horn ability.

Our current ability which makes the dwarves immortal is also referred to the stubbornness of the dwarves and to the strength they got by aule.
That would be 2 abilities with similar effects, which also refer to the same event...^^

+2 votes   reply to comment
Johnny595
Johnny595 Jul 29 2013, 5:43pm replied:

The only thing I've never liked about the invincibility spell is that it's one battalion and you never get to use it when the assault just starts, due to the one unit selection on the group. I only found it very effective when I used on Khazad Dûm veterans, but still there were only 3 men remaining on the group, due to the archers that hit them before they could get there, and the impact was significant. But for a 2 tier spell power should be stronger Imho, cause it's much less effective with guardians. I would be nice to do something like darkness, but that would not only boost but, instead of taking enemy leadership off, strenghtening the dwarves leadership. i.e. 50%+ leadership bonus from heroes, if that is possible to the game's engine as you guys stated several times that it's a very limiting factor, unfourtunatly :[ . And maybe it would be nice to hear from a dev how to uses the invinc spell properly. Always good to learn something :3

+1 vote     reply to comment
Gnomi Creator
Gnomi Jul 30 2013, 2:51am replied:

I personally use it always when it is not on cooldown. This way I have the highest amount of dwarves being invincable after death - of course it doesn't help a lot against archers, but that's not the point of the ability. This ability helps you in direct fights and even guardians will be able to kill a lot more troups.

Your units survive longer => deal more damage.
The enemies will still attack the invincable units => no damage on the other units.

This is why I personally like the ability. It is not one of the strongest tier 2 powers, but it is a moderate power. And of course it is much more effective on stronger troups, even warchant or horn abilities are effective ons tronger troups, as they just have the better stats.^^

A global aura would be possible - but probably without any weather. Even the snow ability for Angmar is no real weather effect, we had to use a lot of tricks there. I don't believe that any similar weather effect is possible for the dwarves.
And how exactly would you show the boost? Such a global strong boost would need a noticable sign, as the enemy needs to see that you have the boost? How exactly would you show it and how would you call the ability?

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Johnny595
Johnny595 Jul 30 2013, 2:20pm replied:

Maybe if dwarves runes came out of the battalions, or perhaps making the troops white such as with the Warden ability from Lothlorien. And I always loved the eclipse effect that comes from the dwarven mausoleum, but I suppose it would confuse the players on wether they are using eclipse or the spell... about the name, I can really think mostly of "Aulë's Blessing" x] or perhaps "Awakening" ^^.

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Gnomi Creator
Gnomi Jul 30 2013, 2:43am replied:

That is technically impossible, sorry. But it sounds really interesting. :D I would like to see such an idea in the game, but as said... more or less impossible. Sadly we have limitations because of the engine. :/

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Edain Team
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Released Jul 19, 2012
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Highest Rated (61 agree) 10/10

You could think im exxagerating the value of this mod,but i can only tell you : try with your hands. Edain mod is without any doubt the best RTS based on the LotR series,and,but this is just my opinion,the best RTS overall. While being much more true to tolkien than any other EA's work,it combines great complexity with good-balance in an excellent way. But what,above all things,makes this mod stand out are the models of the units,heroes and buildings,just take a look to the gallery on the site…

Oct 19 2010, 2:42pm by TheMost

Lowest Rated (14 agree) 5/10

Mordor and other evil factions are overpowered including their heroes and ringheroes. Especially Lorien and Imladris are too weak and their ringheros are not powerful enough to be ringheroes (and Galadriel is far too weak to be Galadriel. Make it to be like in the Lone Wolf mod: two palantir and stronger powers, etc.)... All ringheroes should be as powerful as Sauron, because now it's not fair. Almost all good factions are underpowered. Ents should be better than trolls (except armoured ones), because…

Oct 17 2012, 7:38am by TheLapari

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