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PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:22 am 
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Interesting idea. The Lord of the Rings Online game played with similar storylines. I'll see if I can dig up a synopsis.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:35 pm 
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http://www.theonering.net/torwp/2019/02 ... w-zealand/

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A report has appeared in Scotland’s Daily Record stating that representatives of Amazon Studios were scouting filming locations for their Lord of the Rings TV project in Scotland over the summer. This story is light on details, so we at TORn are treating this information as rumors, for now. These location scouts purportedly traveled as tourists, checking out various locales around Scotland, which offered the opportunity for a meaningful connection with the local communities.

There is not much else new in this story, the quotes about the LOTR project come from old interviews, Amazon is clearly still playing things close to the vest right now. Read article here.

In addition to Scotland, rumors of similar scouting trips through Ireland are floating around as well. The speculation is that New Zealand is still the frontrunner, and that while it is important to have back up locations, part of this is a negotiation tactic for a better tax deal in New Zealand. Just after Christmas we posted a story about a meeting between Amazon and the New Zealand Government regarding a lack of adequate filming and post production facilities in Auckland. These meetings happened in December, while these scouting trips supposedly occurred during the Summer.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:37 pm 
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Alatar wrote:
Interesting idea. The Lord of the Rings Online game played with similar storylines. I'll see if I can dig up a synopsis.



Volume I: Shadows of Angmar
Book I - Stirrings in the Darkness
After the introductions, the player is sent to Aragorn, who needs help weakening the Blackwolds, a hostile gang within Bree-land, loyal to Sharkey. After helping Aragorn and the Rangers, the player is sent to Tom Bombadil to destroy the evil in Othrongroth, the Great Barrow of the Barrow-downs. Though the Wightlord Sambrog is defeated, the Witch-king and his servants, Ivar and Skorgrim, escape the player's pursuit. Upon returning to Bree, the player discovers Aragorn has left with the Hobbits and instead meets Gandalf, who arrived too late to help. The player is then instructed by Gandalf (who leaves for Rivendell as well) to locate one of Gandalf's fellow Istari, Radagast the Brown.

Book II - The Red Maid
The player is sent to the Ranger Candaith, who tries to learn the location of Radagast the Brown for the player. While waiting, the player investigates the mysterious events that happened on Weathertop and fights the Orc army around and on top of the hill. By the time the enemy is defeated, Candaith has found Radagast in the city of Ost Guruth and sends the player to meet him. Radagast asks for the player's help in cleansing the area of Garth Agarwen from the evil wights that inhabit it. Ultimately the player and Radagast fight Ivar the Bloodhand, their leader and servant of the Witch-king. Upon succeeding, the player is urgently sent to the North Downs to aid the Rangers in those lands.

Book III - The Council of the North
The player is asked by Halbarad to aid in the defense of the North Downs against Angmar's forces, by uniting the three main armies of the North Downs: the Men of the town of Trestlebridge, the local Dwarves led by Dori, and Gildor's Elves. After accomplishing this, the player is sent to Rivendell, where the Fellowship has now safely arrived.

Book IV - Chasing Shadows
The Black Rider that survived the Flood of Bruinen by Elrond is still somewhere in the Trollshaws, making it impossible for the Fellowship to leave. With the help of Legolas, Elladan and Elrohir, the player chases the Nazgûl, destroying the Trolls he has corrupted, and forcing the Ringwraith to retreat to the Misty Mountains. The player is sent to pursue him, where Glóin and some Dwarves have set up a camp.

Book V - The Last Refuge
The player's search for the Nazgûl brings him/her to the final stronghold of Skorgrím and the Dourhands, the corrupted Dwarves. An assault led by Gimli results in the fall of Skorgrim and his servants. But the Nazgûl has fled to Helegrod, where a long-dead Dragon Thorog has been reanimated as a wight to serve the Dark Lord. The player arrives just in time to stop the Nazgûl, defeating him and making him lose control of the Dragon, who escapes. Now that Rivendell is safe, it is time to move on to Angmar itself.

Book VI - Fires in the North
Rangers of the North, led by Corunir and Golodir, have gone to Angmar and their kinsmen want to know what has become of them. Upon arriving in Angmar, the player finds Corunir safe in a friendly Hillmen village. He begs the player to find his lost company, who passed through Rammas Deluon: a great series of statues that weaken (or even kill) those who pass it. After destroying the spirits within them, the player becomes able to resist the power of Rammas Deluon, and finds a hidden Dwarf settlement, where a part of the scattered party lives.

Book VII - The Hidden Hope
The player is informed that Golodir is settled at Gath Forthnir, far in the North. Upon arriving there, (s)he finds that Golodir is long gone and the Rangers are led by his daughter, Lorniel. Lorniel reveals that Golodir has been captured by Mordirith, Steward of Angmar, and has been locked away in Carn Dûm. As leader of the remaining Rangers, and with the help of the Elf Laerdan, Lorniel launches an assault on Carn Dûm, where she is slain by Mordirith, who then releases broken Golodir in a mockery, to continue his torture.

Book VIII - The Scourge of the North
Golodir's grief for the death of his daughter has almost destroyed him, yet he sees a chance to avenge her. Reclaiming an ancient sword, he travels with the player to the heart of Carn Dûm, defeating Mordirith with his blade. But then Mordirith's palantír, a great seeing-stone he used to torture Golodir, is quickly taken by the mysterious Sara Oakheart.

Book IX - Shores of Evendim
The player learns that Sara Oakheart is none other than Amarthiel, the legendary Champion of Angmar. She has set up a plot within a tower of Barad Gularan to use the player to weaken Mordirith. Now that she has the palantír, she can communicate with Sauron and challenge Mordirith's position. The player is sent to kill all of Mordirith's Knights, in an attempt to further weaken his power. But despite the player's victories over Mordirith, Amarthiel only grows stronger. After losing Fornost and Barad Gularan, she moves to Annúminas, the ancient capital of Arnor. The Rangers there, led by Calenglad, need the player's aid.

Book X - The City of Kings
A massive battle in Annúminas ensues and the wise Elf Laerdan offers his services to Calenglad. Mordrambor, one of Amarthiel's captains, is captured, but while in captivity he poisons the mind of Laerdan, making the Elf decide to fight Amarthiel on his own, in an attempt to make up for his mistakes in the past. Again the Free Peoples have been tricked by Amarthiel and her servants. Together with the Rangers of Evendim, the player is able to wrestle the palantír from Amarthiel's clutches, but Laerdan is lost. However, within the palantír, Amarthiel saw a glimpse of where Narchuil, her ancient ring, lies. She is now determined to possess its power once more.

Book XI - Prisoner of the Free Peoples
Amarthiel's captain Mordrambor breaks free, killing many Rangers. Soon he leads an army out of Annúminas, to find Amarthiel's Ring, Narchuil. The player attempts to find Narchuil before Amarthiel can, searching the ancient ruins of the Trollshaws. After much searching, it turns out Narmeleth, Laerdan's daughter, who originally caused Amarthiel's fall in Fornost, has become possessed by her. But all searching seems in vain, when it is revealed Amarthiel has already found Narchuil. However, Elrond does not fall for her trickery again; he realizes Narchuil is still out there, and Laerdan knows where.

Book XII - The Ashen Wastes
Amarthiel has Laerdan transported to Angmar, where she learns from him under torture where her Ring is. In a brave attempt to save both Laerdan and the ring Narchuil, the player is able to get to them before Amarthiel does, but only half of the ring was found. Laerdan confesses to Elrond he has broken the Narchuil in two, and reveals where the other part should be. But then he swears an oath upon Elbereth that he will not rest before he has saved his daughter, and leaves the Council.

Book XIII - Doom of the Last King
Trying to find out more about the other half of Narchuil, the player is sent to Forochel. However Amarthiel's forces have already arrived, and their search is underway. In an attempt to find the ring before the Angmarim, the player receives help from the shade of the Last King Arvedui. During a confrontation with the enemy, it appears that Mordrambor has betrayed Amarthiel: the two battle each other and disappear from the view. The player then retrieves the second half of Narchuil and returns it to Rivendell.

Book XIV - The Ring-forges of Eregion
Still seeking to save Narmeleth, Laerdan travels with the two halves of Narchuil to Eregion. Amarthiel, baiting him in, reclaims Narchuil for herself. Elrond sends many Heralds of Rivendell to all corners of Eriador to help him in his search for the lost Ring-lore. But all efforts are too late, for Narchuil has been reforged when the Free Peoples reach Eregion. It quickly becomes clear none are able to withstand Narchuil, until Mordrambor, Amarthiel's former servant, arrives. Sowing confusion in her, he shows her the arrival of Mordirith, who is in power once again, but Amarthiel does not surrender and believes she can defeat him with use of Narchuil. However, Mordirith has the power of the Witch-king and defeats her, claiming Narchuil as his own. Just as he is about to finish Amarthiel, Laerdan appears. He reveals his knowledge that Mordirith is actually Eärnur, the last King of Gondor, taken captive by the Witch-King and made a Wraith in mockery of his former defiance. Under Mordirith's orders Mordrambor kills Laerdan, after which the two leave. Amarthiel is devastated by the loss of her father, and taken captive by the Free Peoples.

Book XV - Daughter of Strife
With the death of her father, Narmeleth is once again freed from the evil influence of Amarthiel. She becomes a captive of the Free Peoples, but volunteers to avenge her father. In Angmar, the final battle between the Free People and Mordirith ensues. First Mordrambor is defeated and Narchuil is finally destroyed by Narmeleth. In the final confrontation, she sacrifices herself in order to defeat Mordirith. The book ends bittersweet with Narmeleth's redemption and her death and Elrond comforts the player, saying that she had found peace in the Undying Lands.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:52 pm 
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Volume II: Mines of Moria
Book I - The Walls of Moria

Moria is opened! An expedition of Dwarves sent by King Dain Ironfoot and known as the Iron Garrison begins its attempts to excavate and enter the Hollin Gate, shortly after the Fellowship's passage. Led by Dwarves Bosi and Brogur, sons of Bifur and Bofur, they finally succeed with the player's help, yet when the last rocks are cleared, the Watcher in the Water attacks the assembled Dwarves, claiming the life of Brogur's son Broin. As the Dwarves regroup, they turn their hope to a discovered cache of older weapons, tasking the player with discovering if one such weapon might be endowed with the power to fight off such a foe as the Watcher. After selecting, training with, and reforging such a weapon, the Iron Garrison faces the Watcher again. This time, it is forced from the Black Pool, and the Iron Garrison passes into Moria.

Book II - Echoes in the Dark

Establishing themselves in their new home, the Iron Garrison begins the task of rediscovering the lore and artifacts of their heritage. One such passage of lore speaks of an ancient Dwarf-smith, favored by Durin, who endeavored to create an axe of solid mithril. So large was the task that an entire forge was created specifically for it: The Heart of Fire. After searching the mines for clues to its location, the Heart of Fire is unearthed, yet the axe, Zigilburk, is nowhere to be found. Nevertheless, the Dwarves are heartened by the recovery of one of their greatest forges, and Brogur pushes onward into Moria, establishing a command post in the Twenty-First Hall.

Book III - The Lord of Moria

Brogur sees to the defense of the Twenty-First Hall, only to learn of the presence of the White Hand's minions nearby. Meanwhile, excavation begins in the Chamber of Mazarbul, producing the Book of Mazarbul, a record of the demise of Balin's Company. While Bosi takes on the task of reading the tome in its entirety, his son Bori plans a strike against the White Hand in Broin's honor. While a pair of Dwarves cause a diversion, Bori and the player sneak into the White Hand camp and confront the commander, Ashpar. Before he dies, Ashpar boasts that his is not the major power, and mentions the name of Mazog, son of Azog and brother of Bolg. Brogur rests assured that Ashpar was simply boasting, yet the news weighs heavy on Bosi. Mazog, he reveals, was the Orc commander responsible for the demise of Balin's company at Mazarbul.

Book IV - Fire and Water

The Orcs and Dwarves each prepare for war. Fearing that attacks may be imminent, Brogur and Bori see that the defenses are secured at the Twenty-First Hall, the Chamber of Crossroads, and the Heart of Fire. The player is sent into the rotting Waterworks and Orc-infested Flaming Deeps beneath Moria to both harass the Orcs and gather supplies. In the meantime, Bori sneaks a look at the Book of Mazarbul, finding mention there of a Dwarf named Óin who went off in search of Zigilburk. Bori and the player follow Óin's path, arriving after a time at a flooded treasury, The Hall of Mithril. There they find not only Zigilburk, but also Broin, wounded yet alive, and the Watcher in the Water. The player drives the Watcher from the hall once again, and the Dwarves return in victory. Yet Broin confesses from his sickbed that he feels a dread about Zigilburk, and fears it may be cursed. Bori does not agree with Broin.

Book V - Drums in the Deep

Broin is still worried about the repercussions of recovering Zigilburk, yet Bori laughs them off and sends the player to Zabadgathol, Mazog's fortress, to defeat some of his bodyguards. Some of these in their dying words speak of an alliance they have obtained, and the player is sent away to collect some of the treasure in Zabadgathol to see if it can shed some light on the issue. It is discovered that Mazog is indeed allied with Dol Guldur. Upon discovery, Bori plans a raid on Zabadgathol to defeat Mazog once and for all. Yet the appearance of Gorothul, Sauron's servant from Dol Guldur, ruins the plan and despite Zigilburk, Bori along with the legendary axe are captured while the player is sent to deliver the news to the Dwarves. After this blow, Bosi has lost hope in the expedition to reclaim Moria, and leaves it up to the player to see to the defenses during a major raid by Mazog's forces, in which the Dwarves succeed for a time.

Book VI - The Shadowy Abyss

Even after the successful defense of several key locations, Bosi's spirits are still low. He sends the player to Lothlórien to seek help from the Elves of the Golden Wood. After proving to Haldir that you are indeed a friend, the player is asked to assist Haldir's brothers in patrolling the borders of the Wood while messengers are sent to Galadriel to relay Bosi's request for aid. By the time the task is done, a company of elves has been sent to the Foundations of Stone, while player is directed to help them. The player learns that the Elves believe Dol Guldur is behind this move of the Orcs, the proof of which is soon discovered. The player is then instructed to find clues of Gandalf's passage through the area, and his fate following the fall from the Bridge of Khazad-dûm begins to unravel. An Elf named Magor has gone missing, and the player is sent to discover his fate. Magor is found captured by Orcs, and the player is able to free him from his captors. Magor then asks for the player's help in defeating the source of the evil that Galadriel sensed beneath Moria. After a hard-fought battle, the player defeats the nameless creature in the depths of the cave. Finally, hearing of the victory the Lady Galadriel summons the player to her garden where many secrets are revealed, including a partial explanation of the fate of Gandalf.

Book VII - Leaves of Lórien

The Fellowship rests in Lórien, while Elves and Dwarves take their first steps toward peace. Bosi is granted an audience with Celeborn and Galadriel, resulting in a contingent of Galadhrim being dispatched to aid the Dwarves in Moria. Among their first joint tasks is to sweep an infestation of the fungus-infested Orcs called the Globsnaga from a recent excavation in Buzun-ghar - a matter that proves especially frustrating to Broin, in the wake of Bori's capture. Instead of working to free their kinsmen, Brogur is pushing ahead with mining efforts, tasking Broin with searching old mining records for notes on potential nodes. Yet such efforts once again prove fruitful, as one record speaks of a secret emergency passage leading from Durin's throne (on which Mazog now sits) to Buzun-ghar. Through its use, and the cooperation of Elf and Dwarf alike, Mazog is captured, yet Bori is nowhere to be found, having been already sent away to Dol Guldur. Celeborn grants the player an audience, commending them while also disagreeing on the notion of sparing Mazog's life. Haldir confesses the time may be drawing near for the Elves to cross the Anduin to confront the evil in Mirkwood directly.

Book VIII - Scourge of Khazad-dûm

Issuriel, Lothlórien history keeper, asks the player to recount the finer points of the escape with Mazog in tow from his throne room. Mazog lets slip a chilling fact: that he's not interested in being a king of Moria because Moria will soon become not fit even for the rule of the Orcs, referring to the rise of ancient nameless creatures from within the depth of Moria. This concerns both the Elves within Foundations of Stone and the Dwarves in the Upper levels. Several relics left by Gorothul before his leave for Dol Guldur are found to attract the nameless creatures, yet the player manages to destroy them.

The conclusion of the Epic Volume 2 takes place within the Siege of Mirkwood expansion

Book IX - Fortress of the Nazgûl

An full-front assault is launched against Dol Guldur by the Elves of Lothlórien, under the banners of the Golden Host. Meanwhile, a small band of Elves known as the Hidden Guard also crosses the river Anduin in secret, with Mazog as their prisoner, accompanied by the player and the Dwarf Broin. They seek to exchange the life of Mazog for the life of the prisoners, including Dwarf Bori. Yet while the military campaign of the Golden Host goes well, the Hidden Guards faces the risk of disaster since the very start: Raddir, the scout, is found dead before he reveals the planned route and soon Issuriel, the scholar, is poisoned by the deadly spiders alongside Mazog. The stout Elf Achardor becomes furious that his friend has been wounded and threatens Mazog's life if Issuriel falls. Issuriel speaks of a rare antidote that will cure the poison but later refuses to take it, allowing Mazog to take it instead. Achardor is even more outraged with this action taken but just before Issuriel loses her life the Dwarf Broin brings another portion of antidote and the quest to Dol Guldur continues. The Hidden Guard soon arrives at the gates of Dol Guldur where the planned exchange takes place. But Gorothul and Ringwraiths who arrive at the scene refuse to hand over Bori, and Achardor sacrifices himself, allowing the rest to escape, while Mazog goes with Gorothul into Dol Guldur. The mission of the Hidden Guard is a total failure, yet the military campaign of the Golden Host goes extremely well: multiple adversaries are slain, enemy communications are disrupted and the Tower of Dol Guldur itself besieged. The task meant to be secret is accomplished by force and Bori is rescued from the Dungeons of Dol Guldur. He recounts a secret passage into tower, once used by Gandalf to find Thorin's father Thrain. The passage is used to launch a surprise assault and during battle in the tower, Broin slays Mazog, reclaiming the mithril axe Zigilburk.

Epilogue - Of Elves and Dwarves

While the assault was successful, the Elves do not have the strength to break the walls of the fortress. Enemy reinforcements are coming from the East and the Elves prepare to fall back beyond Anduin: the whole campaign was a diversion both to weaken the enemy and allow the Fellowship to safely depart Lothlórien. Both Elves and Dwarves finish the last deeds throughout southern Mirkwood. The axe Zigilburk is buried yet again where the dwarves found it, to never wield its power again. The Elves of Lothlórien also strike several additional blows against the dark fortress, and Gorothul is challenged within his quarters in Sammath Gul, and finally defeated.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:56 pm 
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Volume III: Allies of the King
Book 1 - Oath of the Rangers

Elrond received a mysterious message from Galadriel, telling him to gather the Rangers of the North and send them to Rohan to help Aragorn. The player is summoned to the Last Homely House and given a list of Rangers to recruit: Radanir of the Trollshaws, Candaith of Weathertop, Saeradan of Bree-Land, Halros of the Shire, Halbarad from Esteldin, Calenglad from Evendim, Lothrandir from Forochel and finally Corunir and Golodir from Angmar. With the exception of Radanir, all Rangers are the ones player have interacted with during Epic Volume I. Joined by others of their kin, they form the Grey Company and meet Elrohir, Elladan and Lady Arwen, who passes Halbarad the banner she has made for Aragorn.

Book 2 - Ride of the Grey Company

Setting forth from Rivendell, the Grey Company begins the journey south. While passing the Ring-Forges of Eregion, Halbarad asks a Dwarf-Jeweler to craft fake copies of the Ring of Barahir, in order to confuse their enemies and to buy Aragorn time, should a member Grey Company be captured. Arriving in the lands of Enedwaith, the Rangers are trying to make peace with the local tribes and find an ally in Wadu, who is soon found dead. They eventually discover an old and confused Dwarf Nár, father of Ollfardh and old companion of Thrór. To everyone's amazement, he knows about the secret road the Company is planning to take.

Book 3 - Echoes of the Dead

Nona, Wadu's sister, offers to join Grey Company to wage war against Saruman, which Halbarad absolutely refuses. While investigating who can be trusted and who can't, the Rangers receive word that of a band of Oathbreakers from Erech in Enedwaith. An attempt to remind them of their Oath to Isildur fails horribly when Candaith is killed. An angry Halbarad is finished with this land and leads the company on to Dunland. But as the player leaves Nár, the Dwarf finally reveals that Saruman the White had a hand in these events all along.

Book 4 - Rise of Isengard

Passing into the lands of Dunland, the Rangers investigate the loyalties of the local tribes of Dunlendings. Some are fiercely loyal to Saruman, other openly oppose him and many have not yet been convinced to do either. The Falcon-clan of Tur Morva village offers the Rangers shelter in exchange for their help against Saruman. The Rangers busy themselves with preparations for war while the player is sent to scout the rest of Dunland. Finding a surprise ally in Nona, who insists that she does not need Halbarad's permission to travel over her own land, the player and the Rangers come into first contact with the Rohirrim. Riders led by Grimbold hold the Fords of Isen against inevitable assault, while Théodred, son of King Théoden, leads a smaller scouting party into the lands of the Dunlendings, who have been sworn enemies of Rohan for centuries. Returning to village of Tur Morva, the player finds a betrayal waiting for them: the clan decided that more is to be gained by siding with Saruman than by opposing him. The Grey Company is caught unprepared, many Rangers are killed and the rest captured.

The player and Ranger Lothrandir are sent directly to Isengard as a gift to Saruman. Separated from the Ranger, the player is sent working into the pits, observed by merciless Uruks. Using the dislike of Uruks for each other, the player fakes a total submission and is eventually allowed more freedom, as none believes him able to escape any longer. The player finds other prisoners, among them captured Rohirrim and Dunlendings - sworn enemies once, both find something in common after being made slaves to Saruman. Staging a diversion and freeing many prisoners at once, the player is able to sneak past confusion and escape Isengard.

Théodred offers the Rangers Saeradan and Radanir help in rescuing their captive friends and avenging the betrayal. The player and Rohirrim storm the village of traitors and rescue many Rangers, including Halbarad and the sons of Elrond. Yet they are still outnumbered - the leader of the traitorous clan gloats over Ranger's weaknesses and allows them to leave, telling them to spread the tale of how the Falcon-clan beat them. Of almost 60 named Rangers barely 30 made it out alive: Halbarad takes an oath to avenge the traitors and proclaims himself in eternal debt to Théodred, before planning the next move.

Book 5 - The Prince of Rohan

The secrecy required by Grey Company's errand and their weakened state following capture and imprisonment prevents them from continuing their journey for the time being. Finishing his scouting of Dunlending lands, Prince Théodred returns to the Fords of Isen and Halbarad bids the player to go with him, to repay the debt. Saying farewell to old friends, the player arrives at Grimbold's encampment and joins the preparations for the upcoming battle. Théodred shares his plan: the Rohirrim are to journey north to Isengard and smash the vanguard of Saruman's forces, then retreat to the Ford, forcing the Wizard to delay his assault on Rohan and buy themselves valuable time.

At dawn, the Prince leaves a small company to guard the Ford and leads his Éored into battle, with Grimbold and the player at his side. They encounter the vanguard of the Uruks and quickly cut through their lines, but then reinforcements come out of Isengard and outflank the cavalry, nearly surrounding them. Théodred orders a retreat, covered by Grimbold and the player, who have to cut down their pursuers many times. Unknown to the Rohirrim, Saruman has already sent his main force to the Ford of Isen by the eastern bank of the river while the riders attacked from the west. The defenders of the Ford are caught between two forces and are surrounded on a small island amidst the river by the time Théodred returns. Their forces are already failing by the time Grimbold and the player arrive. They cut through the enemies, but as they reach Théodred, he is struck by a mighty Uruk. It is then that the reinforcements from Riddermark finally arrive, led by Elfhelm from Helm's Deep, and charge the attackers. The Uruks retreat to Isengard, while Elfhelm and Grimbold tend to the gravely wounded Prince, who orders to bury him at the Ford - to guard it until such time as Éomer comes. At nightfall, the Prince of the Riddermark passes away.

Book 6 - Mists of Anduin

Regrouping at Grimbold's encampment at night, the Rohirrim and the player take a rest after a long day of battle. The player experiences a strange lucid dream, seeing many friends and enemies, both living and already dead. An apparition of Lady Galadriel bids the player to come and visit her urgently, adding a request to "bring the ghost" at the end. "The Ghost" refers to the Dunlending girl Nona, who had dubbed herself "Wadu's Ghost" in memory of her late brother and began waging her own vendetta over the Dunlendings who sold themselves over to Saruman. The players tracks Nona in the Gap of Rohan and convinces her to undertake a journey to Lothlórien. While the Galadhrim border sentries are even more distrusting of an outsider from Dunland than usual, the two are granted an audience. Galadriel shocks the player by saying that the dream had nothing to do with her, when Gandalf the White enters the conversation, having barely missed the Fellowship as they departed down the Great River days earlier. The Wizard insists that the dream must have had meaning and bids the player to explore the shores of Anduin downstream. After passing through the Rohirrim border settlement of Stangard, the player and Nona arrive at the Brown Lands, where they find a new threat: a corpse of a fell beast, slain by an arrow fired by Legolas as described in Fellowship of the Ring, with its rider missing. On their way back to the Rohirrim town, the player and Nona are attacked by first a band of Easterlings and later the Nazgûl himself. Using the fire, the two manage to hold their ground, yet Nona is wounded - and whether by an Easterling blade or a Morgul one is unclear. The Rohirrim are in no hurry to offer help to one of their old enemies, save for one man named Horn. With all haste Horn and the player take Nona back to Lady Galadriel, who heals the wound, leaving her out of danger. Later, Galadriel reveals to the player that in her Mirror she foresaw Nona's demise and that she was saved only by the player's actions.

Book 7 - A Fellowship Endangered

Her wounds healed, the Dunlending girl Nona makes a full recovery and becomes eager to leave Lothlórien. Lady Galadriel's mirror reveals to her and the player that the Fellowship faced a grave danger at Parth Galen, but many things remain unclear. Galadriel bids the player and Nona to travel further down the river of Anduin to discover the Fellowship's fate, sending with them guide - an Elf named Corudan, whose sister Sigileth fought alongside the player in Mirkwood and perished during the battle in Dol Guldur. The Fellowship makes a brief stop at the Rohirrim town of Stangard, where the player discovers that Horn, the man who helped carry wounded Nona into Lothlórien, is no longer welcome by other men for venturing into the woods they consider haunted. His future uncertain, Horn accepts the offer to join the player's quest. Together with an Elf, a man of Rohan and a girl from Dunland, the player travels by boat south down Anduin, eventually reaching the Argonath. On the lawn of Parth Galen, they find signs of the Fellowship's passing and a struggle and are eventually able to piece together the events leading to the Breaking of the Fellowship. This goal accomplished, they decide to pursue the Three Hunters and aid them in rescuing Merry and Pippin from the Uruks who captured them.[citation needed]

Book 8 - Into the Riddermark

Already days behind Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli, the Company has no hope of catching up with them on foot. They set to acquire War-Steeds from the friendly Rohirrim in the town of Langhold. While the Three Hunters led their pursuit on foot without stopping for rest, the player's company now has the benefit of the mounts, but makes several stops at Rohirrim towns along the way, to get a better direction of where the passing Uruks went. After departing the town of Faldham, where Elfhelm's son Elfmar rules in his father's absence at the Fords of Isen, they make their way to Eaworth in the Entwash Vale, near the edge of Fangorn Forest. Horn's father Ingbert is the Reeve - ruler - of this town and the vale itself, but is not pleased to see his son, for Horn had a term to serve in the town of Stangard, which he now broke. Adding more tension is the fact that Horn and Nona, despite all their differences, have begun to show signs of affection for each other during the long journey, but few in Eaworth are even being able to tolerate to presence of a "wild Dunlending" among them. Offended by such welcome, Nona leaves silently and without saying goodbye. Unable to find her trail, the player, Corudan and Horn have no choice but to continue with their original mission.[citation needed]

Book 9 - The Third Marshall

Éomer and his riders make a stop at Eaworth while returning to Edoras. The Third Marshall says to the player the same thing he earlier said to Aragorn: that his riders have killed the Uruks and burned their bodies, with none left alive. The player and his/her two companions set out to investigate the site of the battle nonetheless. Lacking Aragorn's superior tracking skills, they miss the signs of the Hobbits having escaped and nearly succumb to despair. However, a chance encounter with an Ent from Fangorn reveals that not only are the Hobbits alive, but that Gandalf himself has already seen for their safety. Their hopes renewed, the player, Horn and Corudan the Elf decide to travel with Éomer's eored for a time.[citation needed]

Éomer's next stop takes him to the town of Snowbourn on the river of the same name. The Third Marshall deems the entire Eastemnet not defensible, with Isengard forces coming from the west, Mordor orcs pouring from the south and Easterlings crossing the river from the east. By his military power, he orders all people remaining in those lands to abandon their homes and move westward across the Entwash river, where they can be better defended. Fastred, the Thane ("Major") of Snowbourn openly defies this order, however, refusing to abandon his position and leading bold strikes against orc forces instead. Angered at the insubordination, Éomer decides to bring this matter directly to the attention of the King.[citation needed]

The player and his companions accompany Éomer to Edoras, where the sings of Grima Wormtongue's growing influence become apparent to all after The King's Minstel Gléowine is thrown out of the court for crossing him. The audience with King Théoden quickly turns into an interrogation by Wormtongue, who orders Éomer stripped of his rank and imprisoned for breaking the "King's" direct order not to pursue the Uruk-hai band. Only an intervention by Lady Éowyn saves the player, Corudan and Horn from similar fate - instead they are thrown out of Edoras and are ordered to remain in the Eastemnet, not to cross the Entwash river under the penalty of death. Their next move uncertain, the trio decides to spend time helping those people who choose to fight for their homes in this land, despite being abandoned by Edoras.[citation needed]

Book 10 - Snows of Wildermore

The player, Horn and Corudan choose to follow Gléowine, King Théoden's minstrel and Horn's old mentor, who has been thrown out of Edoras along with them. They find him in Snowbourn, where they hear troubling news from Harding, Aldor of the Northmarch - no word has come from Wildermore, in remote corner of the Wold, for weeks. Wildermore is where Gléowine spend his youth and a chance to revisit those lands gives him a new purpose. He joins the player's companions as they travel to the Wold and then to Wildermore. The find the land engulfed in snow, highly unnatural for those lands, and terrorized by a stone giant named Nurzum. A foul product of Saruman experiments, he had his strength augmented with remains of an ancient Huorn, making him nigh invulnerable, and a relic of Morgoth from Thangorodrim fused to his back, causing unnatural cold, snow storms and ice to follow him whenever he goes. Widfara, one of Harding's men from the Wold, is a sole survivor of his attack, and believes everyone else, including Harding's son Leodwig, killed.[citation needed]

While traversing Wildermore in search of ways to oppose Nurzum, the player and his companions unexpectedly come across Nona. Since her departure in Eaworth, she made her way to the city of Byre Tor, which has been razed by Nurzum, and cared for the survivors, her hatred for Men of Rohan lessened by the kind actions. Her reunion with Horn is brief and cold, and not having yet resolved her feelings for him, she chooses to leave again. The others follow her to a cave where she hides survivors from the snow, among them Harding's son Leodwig, injured but alive. Seeing wrath of Nurzum firsthand, Corudan the Elf decides to search for aid among the Ents of the nearby Fangorn Forest. He and the player manage to find and wake the Ent Leaflock (Finglas) and relay him Nuzum's story. The Ent cares little for troubles of Men, but defiling of Huorn's remains rouses him to anger and he commands Huorns of the forest to come after the giant. Nurzum fights off the attack, but is weakened and later defeated by the player and Heroes of Wildermore. Meanwhile, Nona and Horn resolve their feelings and finally commit to each other.[citation needed]

Interludes

A series of session plays running concurrent to Book 10 shows the Rangers of the Grey Company whom the player left in Book 5 and their activities in Dunland, without the player character's involvement.

Meanwhile, the Grey Company of Dúnedain remains in Dunland, where following their rescue from imprisonment in Tur Morva, the Rangers drove the traitorous Falcon Clan underground. The Ranges occupy the city itself and fight off several smaller ambushes, but don't have the force to assault the Dunlendings in the tunnels under Methedras, for the Falcon Clan knows them much better, resulting in a stalemate. The Sons of Elrond bid Halbarad to continue the journey south, yet many Rangers refuse to leave without having vengeance for their fallen brothers. The Ranger Saeradan, with Halbarad's permission, leaves the company and takes a wagon with the bodies of the fallen north, to prevent their defilement in the hostile lands. Upon reaching Enedwaith he makes an important discovery - the Oathbreakers of the Forsaken Road, responsible for an earlier attack on the Rangers, have left those lands and are travelling back to the Stone of Erech, hoping to be relieved of their eternal curse. In Tur Morva the Ranger Golodir refuses to wait for vengeance any longer and enters the caverns accompanied only by his friend Corunir. There they discover that the Falcon Clan has tricked them again and used the underground passages to cross the Misty Mountains into the lands of Rohan. In Isengard, the Ranger Lothrandir is still holding out against physical and mental abuse by Saruman's servants, but the Wizard has patience and is determined to break him.

Book 11 - The Golden Hall

As the refugees of the city of Byre Tor prepare to leave their temporary cave shelter, the player and his travelling companions decide that the news of Saruman's atrocities in Wildermore must be reported to King Théoden despite the penalty for breaking their banishment. To avoid angering him even further with the presence of a Dunlending woman, Nona and the Elf Corudan escort the refugess to the nearest surviving city of Forlaw, while the Rohirrim men Horn and Gleowine together with the player ride to Edoras. Their timing turns out to be most fortunate, as they seek audience just after Gandalf has arrived and woken the King from a long slumber. Éomer is released from imprisonment, Grima Wormtongue is thrown out of the court and after a short preparation, King Théoden musters his army to ride forth and meet the forces of Isengard head-on. Gandalf, Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli, Éomer and Gleowine depart with the King's riders while the player and Horn stay behind in Edoras to assist Lady Éowyn, who has been ordered by her uncle to bring both citizens of Edoras and the refugees from other corners on Rohan into the safety of Dunharrow.

Book 12 - War in the Westemnet

After making arrangements for bringing a large number of cilivians to Dunharrow, the player and Horn fulfill the promise given earlier to Éomer by visiting his home town of Aldburg and confirming that his regent manages to lead the people in his absence. They are caught up with by Nona and Corudan and the whole party returns to Edoras. Before Éowyn and the refugees can depart, it is revealed that a servant of Wormtongue remained undiscovered in the city and is now actively engaging in both sabotage and murder. Before the spy can be apprehended, he flees Edoras and the player's party sets out to chase him through the lands of Westemnet, which are now besieged by the White Hand forces. After conversing with Thane Herubrand of Woodhurst and his son Herefara, they learn that a war band of Dunlendings bearing the sign of a Talon of the Falcon has been seen marauding in the area. Both the player and Nona desire revenge on the Falcon Clan, which had betrayed their Ranger friends to Saruman in Dunland. Before they can act however, a more urgent message arrives: the Fords of Isen have fallen to the enemy, their defenders Elfhelm, Grimbold and Erkenbrand are nowhere to be found, a massive army from Isengard marches through the Westfold and King Théoden's forces have taken refuge at Helm's Deep. The party splits once more: Nona is unwilling to abandon her quest for vengeance and Horn is unwilling to leave her, so they set out to track the Falcon clan, while the player and Corudan ride to Helm's Deep. On their way they meet Gandalf the White on Shadowfax - it was Gandalf who advised the King to turn his army to Helm's Deep, and now he is seeking far and wide for the survivors of the second battle of the Fords of Isen, if any remains. After Gandalf finds Elfhelm's eored, Elfhelm relays to him the recent news: the force that came from Isengard was many thousands strong and Erkenbrand and his men were driven south of the Fords, beyond the river Isen. Seeing their situation hopeless, Elfhelm chose to retreat and, despite Grimbold's protests, took his men back into Rohan before Saruman's army poured through the Fords in their wake. Gandalf orders Elfhelm to protect Edoras, which now sits empty, and travels to the Fords to find Grimbold. His men almost all dead, Grimbold refuses to abandon the Fords, where Prince Theodred now lays buried. Gandalf helps him reconnect with Erkenbrand and leads the combined force to Helm's Deep.

Book 13 - Helm's Deep

The player manages to arrive to Helm's Deep just before the gates are closed in preparations for the battle. Erkenbrand, the military commander of Hornburg, took most of the defenders and weapons with him to the Fords, so the King's army can only supplement itself with refugee villagers and makeshift weapons. As the night falls, the White Hand forces begin to arrive and Gamling the Old holds them for a short while at Helm's Dike, before being overwhelmed and retreating into the fortress. Orcs, Uruks and Dunlendings assault the Deeping Wall and the defenders led by Aragorn manage to hold them off, until a section of the wall is blown and the enemy pours into the Deeping Comb. Éomer, Gimli and the player are trapped in the Glittering Caves and have to protect the refugees hidden there. Their plan to lead the refugees away through the secret mountain tunnels fails when it is revealed that those passages are already known to the enemy - a group of Dunlendings emerges in the caves from a direction though safe and is led by Lhue Brenin, the Chieftain of the Falcon clan. With Gimli's help, the player manages to slay him and exact vengeance upon the Dúnedain slain in Tal Methedras. As the dawn comes, Théoden chooses to ride forth with the remaining able riders and meet the enemy head-on. The sound of the Horn of Helm Hammerhand shatters the morale of Saruman's minions, as Théoden, Legolas and Aragorn cut through their ranks. It is then that Gandalf arrives, with Grimbold and Erkenbrand leading a combined force of footmen and riders. The Dunlendings surrender en-masse and the Orcs and Uruks try to flee into Westfold, only to be trapped by the arrival of Huorns from the Fangorn Forest. In the aftermath of the battle, fallen are counted in many numbers, but the White Hand army is destroyed and Rohan still stands. Gandalf warns the player and others not to relax for long, for soon they must ride to the Ring of Isengard and confront Saruman himself at the Tower of Orthanc.

Book 14 - The Breaking of Isengard

In the aftermath of the battle the minstrel Gleowine and the player pay respect to Théoden's doorwarden Háma, who fell at the gates of the Hornburg. King Théoden, Éomer, Gandalf, Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli and the player set out for Isengard, passing through the forest of Huorns that came down from Fangorn on their way. As they approach the Gap of Rohan, they are met by Halbarad and the remaining Rangers of the Grey Company, their long ride to the aid of their chieftain Aragorn complete at last. This is the first time where the Epic storyline contradicts the Lord of the Rings books, as the Rangers are not supposed to meet Aragorn until after visiting Isengard. At the gates of the now flooded Isengard, the company finds Peregrin and Merdiadoc. The Hobbits relay the tale of their escape from Saruman's Uruks, meeting with Treebeard, the Entmoot and the march of the Ents on Isengard. Gandalf, Théoden and Aragorn set out to confront Saruman, while the Rangers begin to search for their kinsman Lothrandir, who has been imprisoned in Isengard since the Falcon Clan's betrayal in Dunland. In a section of the wall that escaped destruction by the Ents but is quickly being flooded, the Rangers begin opening prison cells until they finally discover a man in the signature Grey Company outfit. To their horror, the rescued prisoner is completely broken in body and mind alike: his face is mutilated beyond recognition and his shallow eyes do not seem to recognize his friends. He only manages to utter a single word before collapsing and passing away, a broken shadow of the strong-willed man Lothrandir once was. However, while mourning their fallen friend, the Rangers discover that it was not Lothrandir underneath the garbs. Despite using the magic to torture his body and mind in horrific ways, Saruman failed to break the Dúnadan and in an act of corrupted twisted cruelty had him switch garbs with a prisoner from Dunland. Continuing the search, the player finally finds Lothrandir in another cell - beaten, bruised and weakened, but very much alive and sane. At the same time, Gandalf breaks Saruman's staff and casts him out the Order of the Wizards and the White Council. Treebeard promises to keep watch over the Wizard now trapped in his tower, while Pippin briefly comes in contact with the palantír thrown out by Grima Wormtongue. Aragorn is much rejoiced over both finding his captured kinsman alive and ending Saruman's threat to Rohan and extends his thanks to all of his allies: the Fellowship, the Dúnedain, the Rohirrim and the player alike.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:01 pm 
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Alatar wrote:
http://www.theonering.net/torwp/2019/02/10/105857-is-amazon-studios-scouting-lotr-filming-locations-outside-of-new-zealand/

Quote:
A report has appeared in Scotland’s Daily Record stating that representatives of Amazon Studios were scouting filming locations for their Lord of the Rings TV project in Scotland over the summer. This story is light on details, so we at TORn are treating this information as rumors, for now. These location scouts purportedly traveled as tourists, checking out various locales around Scotland, which offered the opportunity for a meaningful connection with the local communities.

There is not much else new in this story, the quotes about the LOTR project come from old interviews, Amazon is clearly still playing things close to the vest right now. Read article here.

In addition to Scotland, rumors of similar scouting trips through Ireland are floating around as well. The speculation is that New Zealand is still the frontrunner, and that while it is important to have back up locations, part of this is a negotiation tactic for a better tax deal in New Zealand. Just after Christmas we posted a story about a meeting between Amazon and the New Zealand Government regarding a lack of adequate filming and post production facilities in Auckland. These meetings happened in December, while these scouting trips supposedly occurred during the Summer.


Here's the story in the Daily Record, complete with its misleading headline.

New £1b Lord of the Rings prequel TV series set to be filmed in Scotland

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:18 pm 
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Ooooh... I remember the Book I and II quests from when I was playing LOTRO.... Fun Times!!

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 16, 2019 5:56 am 
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Well, we have a map. They've filled in the East a bit.
https://www.amazon.com/adlp/lotronprime

While I know we shouldn't read too deeply into it...if they were going to venture to the outer nations, I would have expected Harad to be the one, not Rhun.

I am not opposed to eventually going to Harad or Rhun, although it would be very tricky to pull off properly for a lot of reasons. The Lord of the Rings LCG (a co-op game) did do a storyline in Harad that was received well.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 16, 2019 9:51 am 
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If they do through the TORC RP forum, they might get some ideas.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 16, 2019 3:12 pm 
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After reading a bit of chatter on TORN and checking my copy of HoME IV and Fonstad's Atlas, there is an eastern mountain range Tolkien thought about and sketched, the Red Mountains or Orocarni. Although if it's the same one, they've moved it inward some.

If it ends up being called the "Red Mountains", that's a major clue that the estate is releasing some degree of non-LotR material and that Amazon has done their homework. Just have to wait and see...


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 16, 2019 4:37 pm 
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Or its a sign that they are just making stuff up. We'll have to see.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 16, 2019 4:49 pm 
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Yes, my speculation is a pretty big “if”!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 3:07 pm 
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Well now!

The map has had some text added to it, and lo and behold the land known in the time of the War of the Ring as Rohan is labeled as "Calenardhon" which was what it was called before it was gifted to Eorl by Cirion and was still a part of Gondor. So maybe we are not starting with the adventures of young Aragorn after all, but instead starting much earlier.

Or maybe this is just a misdirection to keep us on our toes.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 4:23 pm 
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Yep, it's pretty interesting! Gondor is not labelled either; could we be going to the Second Age? That is the part of the lore I know least (especially the non-Numenor stuff), so I would need to study up on it!

Even if we do still land in the late Third Age, that they have studied the lore well enough to dig out "Calenardhon" is mildly encouraging.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 4:41 pm 
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So far as I can recall, it wasn't called Calenardhon until it was a part of Gondor, so if that is correct, it wouldn't be Second Age but rather early Third Age. But it is weird that it is the only region of Gondor labeled; you would think that Anorien and Ithilien would also be labeled, and/or Gondor in general. Instead, Rhovanian is labeled. And further west, Lindon and Eriodor, but not Arnor.

What does it all mean?

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 4:43 pm 
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That they are just picking out cool sounding names?

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 4:54 pm 
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No, I don't think so. There clearly is a plan. Whether it is a good plan is still to be seen, but there clearly is a plan.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 5:12 pm 
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I did a quick check with the index in LotR and Unfinished Tales. LotR only talks about it with regard to the Third Age, but Calenardhon actually is mentioned in both Aldarion and Erendis and Galadriel and Celeborn. So it's not anachronistic in the Second Age.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 5:49 pm 
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Great catch! I should have recalled that.

In Gil-galad's letter to Aldarion's father, Menuldur, he writes: "But in that mountain-wall there is a great gap southward in the land of Calenardhon; and by that way inroad from the East must come. Already enmity creeps along the coast towards it. It could be defended and assault hindered, did we hold some seat of power upon the nearer shore."

In Galadriel and Celeborn there are two second age references:

"When Sauron learned of the repentance and revolt of Celebrimbor his disguise fell and his wrath was revealed; and gathering a great force he moved over Calenardhon (Rohan) to the invasion of Eriador in the year 1695."


"Sauron was driven away south-east after great slaughter at Sarn Ford (the crossing of the Baranduin); and though strengthened by his force at Tharbad he suddenly found a host of the Númenóreans again in his rear, for Ciryatur had put a strong force ashore at the mouth of the Gwathló (Greyflood), "where there was a small Númenórean harbour." [This was Vinyalondë of Tar-Aldarion, afterwards called Lond Daer; see Appendix D. p. 274.] In the Battle of the Gwathló Sauron was routed utterly and he himself only narrowly escaped. His small remaining force was assailed in the east of Calenardhon, and he with no more than a bodyguard fled to the region afterwards called Dagorlad (Battle Plain), whence broken and humiliated he returned to Mordor, and vowed vengeance upon Númenor."


Could they really be starting in the Second Age? I don't believe it. It is somehow just a misdirection, providing background to Aragorn's story. I refuse to get my hopes up beyond that!

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2019 2:51 pm 
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Some small but interesting information about both Amazon's secrecy and their relationship with the Tolkien family:
https://amp.businessinsider.com/amazon- ... ret-2019-2
Quote:
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, she said the show's writers are being kept in a secure room with no natural light in order to prevent leaks. She said:

"There's a fantastic writers room working under lock and key. They're already generating really exciting material. They're down in Santa Monica. You have to go through such clearance, and they have all their windows taped closed. And there's a security guard that sits outside, and you have to have a fingerprint to get in there, because their whole board is up on a thing of the whole season."

Salke also said that Tolkein's descendants are going to spend some time with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

"His daughters and the grandchildren, they're coming to New York, and Jeff Bezos, me, Jeff Blackburn, a team of us are going and they've invited us to a dinner and see some art, some creative work that they haven't shown the world yet," she said.


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