|The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth II|
Single player, Multiplayer
ESRB: Teen (T)
Unlike its predecessor, the game is set mainly in the northern regions of Middle-earth, and focuses on the war there. Factions include the Elves, Dwarves, Men of the West, (Gondor and Rohan combined) and the Goblins, along with Mordor and Isengard. For the Good campaign, the story starts in Rivendell where the Goblins from the Misty Mountains are poised to attack, while the Fellowship of the Ring journey south. For the Evil campaign, it begins with the siege of Lórien from Mordor's stronghold of Dol Guldur.
The story highlights some of the lesser-known events of the book — as EA had acquired a license from Tolkien Enterprises as well as one for the movies, they used the battles in the north as the focal point, which are only briefly hinted at in the Extended Edition of The Return of the King (film) DVD, and noted in the Appendices in the novels: in the books it is explained that while the front of the war that the Fellowship characters are experiencing (and which is directly shown by the movies) is the primary one, it is in fact a war fought on many fronts across Middle-earth. However, the game and its version of the war in the north should not be seen an accurate record of what Tolkien actually wrote, since many liberties have been taken (see below).
BFME II differs remarkably from BFME in many ways:
- Resource accumulation has been tweaked.
- Naval battles are possible, and players control larger battalions.
- Buildings are not expanding to higher levels simply by usage anymore (except for resource collecting buildings). They are upgraded manually now.
- The single player game consists of more varied objectives with long-term consequences than the "search and destroy" scenarios which dominated the first game.
- Additionally, the method of building bases on predetermined plots has been replaced with the traditional real-time strategy building style which features a fort operating as a base hub.
- The command point system has also been modified, which is dependent on the number of resource buildings (farms, mallorn trees, mine shafts, furnaces, tunnel, slaughterhouse).
- There are missions or portions of missions inside buildings in the single-player campaign.
- The player is able to build section of walls which expand in non-linear direction and attach the wall to impassable terrain, such as mountains.
- There are new powers such as the "Watcher in the Water", "Flood" and "Tom Bombadil", and new defensive upgrades such as boiling oil, flaming arrows, trebuchets and catapults, including bonus-giving monuments.
- Certain neutral buildings can be captured, to build ships, recruit special units, or get extra resources.
- The new Goblin, Spiderling and Corsair units can climb walls.
- There are improved graphic effects like spreading fire and light reflection.
- The player can flank the enemy to receive an attack advantage.
- In multiplayer, the player is able to customize his or her own hero from scratch, giving him/her their own unique appearance, skills, and abilities (PC version only).
- EA has included the original characters Gorkil the Goblin King and Drogoth the Dragon Lord, as well as Tolkien's own Glorfindel and Glóin and other units based on his writings.
- Initially a feature for the first part, it is now possible to get the powerful "Ring-Heroes" Galadriel or Sauron, if the "One Ring" is found on the map (carried by Gollum) and taken back to the fortress. They are then summoned and used like other heroes.
- Walls can no longer have troops sitting on top of them, only towers can be built to fire at enemies, while major strongholds like Minas Tirith and Helm's Deep have walls with troops on top.
BFME2 has over forty different locations in Skirmish mode. Here are most of them.
- Mithlond (the Grey Havens)
- The Lonely Mountain (Erebor)
- Dol Guldur
- Caradhras (the Redhorn Pass)
- The Shire (specifically Hobbiton and Bywater)
- Fangorn Forest
- Minas Tirith
- Minas Morgul
- Withered Heath
- Gap of Rohan
- Iron Hills
- Mount Doom
- Black Gate
- Dead Marshes
- High Pass
- Grey Mountains
- Blue Mountains
- Helm's Deep
- Tower Hills
Good campaign levelsEdit
- Mission 1: Rivendell
As the Fellowship sets out to destroy the One Ring, Elrond, Glorfindel and Glóin stay behind in Rivendell to plan the war in the North; however, Rivendell is attacked by a Goblin army from the Misty Mountains. You must rally the elves and defend Rivendell.
Playable Heroes: Glorfindel, Glóin, Elrond, Arwen, Eagles
- Mission 2: High Pass
Elrond sends Glorfindel and Glóin to unite the Elves and the Dwarves against Sauron and to take on the Goblin hordes. Before the attack on Rivendell can be traced to its source, the High Pass road must be retaken from the Goblins as it is the vital connection between East and West.
Playable Heroes: Glorfindel, Glóin, Haldir
Commander: Watcher in the Water
- Mission 3: Ettenmoors
The war of the North has begun in earnest and you are pitted against Trolls, Mountain Giants, Goblins and their new ruler Gorkil, who is being controlled by Sauron. The level is set in the Ettenmoors and the ruins of the Witch-king's previous fortress of Carn Dûm.
Playable Heroes: Glorfindel, Glóin, Haldir, Treebeard
- Mission 4: Blue Mountains
You have a chance to gain favour with the Dwarves of the Blue Mountains, impeding Sauron further. You must fight your way through the Goblin-infested Dwarven halls of the Blue Mountains and kill the dragon that lurks there.
Playable Heroes: Glorfindel, Glóin
- Mission 5: Grey Havens
Your next mission is to defend the Grey Havens from a combined land and sea assault by the Corsairs of Umbar and a Goblin army. If it is captured then Sauron will be able to open up a new front in the war.
Playable Heroes: Glorfindel, Glóin, Treebeard
- Mission 6: Celduin River
Sauron has deployed a huge army from Dol Guldur to conquer the surrounding Elven and Dwarven lands. One of the targets is the Manish settlement of Esgaroth on the banks of the river Celduin. The people of Esgaroth are allies of the Dwarves of Erebor and the Dwarves must help them defend their town.
Playable Heroes: King Dain
- Mission 7: Dale and Erebor
The army of Dol Guldur lays siege to the city of Dale and the Dwarven mountain fortress of Erebor. This is a critical battle in the war of the North.
Playable Heroes: King Dain, Glorfindel, Gloin, Thranduil
Commanders: Mouth of Sauron, Nazgûl, Fell Beast, multiple Trolls
- Mission 8: Dol Guldur
The combined Elven and Dwarven armies lay siege to Dol Guldur, the source of Sauron's power in the north. These united armies have decided to assault this evil stronghold and destroy it for good. The first force to come is led solely by Elrond, but later, Thranduil, Glorfindel, Gloin, Arwen, and King Dain join in with armies of their own. Together, with the help of some Ents and an Eagle, these armies charge upon Dol Guldur and destroy it, freeing northern Middle-earth of evil once and for all.
Playable Heroes: Elrond, Glorfindel, Glóin, King Dain, Arwen, Thranduil, Treebeard, Eagles
Commanders: Watcher in the Water, Summoned Dragon, Fell beast, Nazgûl, Wyrm, etc.
Evil campaign levelsEdit
Video of an explosion in the game
- Mission 1: Lórien
The Goblin armies, led by the Mouth of Sauron with a retinue of Ringwraiths, must assault the Elven realm of Lothlórien, burn the forest to the ground and claim this haven for Sauron.
Playable Heroes: Mouth of Sauron, Three Nazgûl
Commanders: Celeborn, Galadriel (escapes after half damage), Haldir
- Mission 2: Grey Havens
The Goblins and the Corsairs assault the Grey Havens. If they succeed, then Sauron will be able to pour troops into the Northwest of Middle-earth and open up a new front in the War of the Ring.
Playable Heroes: Gorkil the Goblin King
- Mission 3: The Shire
The Goblins decide to burn the Shire and conquer the Hobbits (something about a prior grudge, most probably the attack of the goblin chief, Golfimbul and his warg riders on the Shire that was thwarted by Bandobras "Bullroarer" Took), and the Dúnedain garrison. Halfway through the battle, Isengard's Uruk-hai forces, led by Gríma Wormtongue, attempt to claim the Shire for themselves, attacking the Goblins' army.
Playable Heroes: Gorkil the Goblin King
- Mission 4: Fornost
The Dwarves and Dúnedain make a stand at the ruined city of Fornost. The Goblin army returns from the Shire and lay siege to the fortifications.
Playable Heroes: Gorkil the Goblin King
- Mission 5: Mirkwood
Dol Guldur deploys a huge army to crush the Elves of Mirkwood and their Ent allies, who stage a fighting retreat but are overwhelmed.
Playable Heroes: Mouth of Sauron, Three Nazgûl, Shelob
- Mission 6: Withered Heath
Before assaulting Erebor, Sauron's armies move Northeast to destroy a Dwarven outpost and recruit the native dragons and Drogoth their leader as their allies.
Playable Heroes: Mouth of Sauron, Three Nazgûl
- Mission 7: Erebor
In this crucial battle, you command a vast army and lay siege to the city of Dale and the Dwarves' mountain fortress of Erebor.
Playable Heroes: Mouth of Sauron, Two Nazgûl
- Mission 8: Rivendell
The final battle of the Evil campaign takes place at Rivendell. You command a huge army but the defenders will fight to the death to protect their homes.
Playable Heroes: All Goblin and Mordor Heroes, Sauron
Commanders: Arwen, Elrond, Eagles, Fellowship of the Ring except Boromir, Galadriel, Tom Bombadil.
Maps Added in Later VersionsEdit
COLLECTOR'S EDITION MAPS
|Argonath, Forochel, Tournament Snow, Umbar, Weathertop|
MAPS ADDED BY PATCHES
|Evendim, Fords of Isen II, Tournament Hills, Weather Hills, Udûn|
MAPS NOT INCLUDED IN FINAL RELEASE
|Bree (This map is available for download.)|
Faction power iconsEdit
Besides the normal edition of Battle for Middle-earth II, Electronic Arts released a Collector's Edition of the game exclusively for the PC-version.  This edition has five additional maps, new monster skins and models, slightly changed special effects and in multiplayer games the "Create-A-Hero" gets a star on top to identify Collector’s Edition gamers during on-line play or Skirmish. It also contains a bonus DVD with e.g. Making-Of Videos, an Artwork-Viewer, the game music or the complete ingame videos.
Xbox 360 VersionEdit
The console version is different to the PC-game. The changes are following:
- Four new multiplayer-modes: "Capture and Hold", "King of the Hill", "Resource Race" and "Hero vs. Hero"
- A new Interface and gamepad-optimized controls
- No "Create-A-Hero"-mode. (Instead: Unlockable heroes.)
- No "War-Of-The-Ring"-mode
- Multiplayer is limited to 4 players.
- Reduced commandpoint limit
Game Storyline (Full Summary)Edit
The Good Campaign opens after the Fellowship of the Ring has set out on their mission to unmake the One Ring of Power, with Elrond and Glóin planning the War in the North. The Elven hero Glorfindel discovers an impending attack on the Elven sanctuary of Rivendell and leads his remaining Elven armies to alert Elrond. Thanks to his early warning, Elrond's forces in Rivendell manage to repel the Goblins' attacks despite the arrival of a fire-breathing Wyrm. Following the battle, Elrond realizes that the Elves and Dwarves must join forces to defeat Sauron and his allies.
Elrond sends Glorfindel and Gloin to ally with the Dwarves. Unfortunately, the High Pass is infested with Goblins, which have posed a major threat to this area. The Elves decide to clear the Pass of the Goblins, rescue an ambushed Haldir, and eliminate the Goblin settlements.
The next battle takes place in the Goblin capital of Ettenmoors. Glorfindel, Gloin, and Haldir rush to rescue an Elven settlement from Goblin attacks. After rescuing the settlement, they lead an Elven army to destroy an ancient drum, free an Ent Moot, and destroy the Goblin King and his fortress with the help of the Ents. After their victory, the heroes are informed that the Goblins, on Sauron's command, have enlisted the service of Drogoth the Dragon Lord who is laying waste to the Dwarves of the Blue Mountains. The heroes make their way to the Blue Mountains and help the Dwarven army to defeat Drogoth and his Goblins. Unfortunately, the Dwarves refuse to help them and the leaders of the Free Peoples are forced to move to the Grey Havens to seek help from the Elves.
The Grey Havens, an Elven port on the western shores, is attacked by the Corsairs of Umbar, allies of Sauron. The Elven ships, with the help of Glorfindel and Gloin, eliminate the Corsair blockade and capture Mordor's shipwrights. Soon after, the Corsair and Goblin armada prepare their assault on the shores. The Dwarves, who have been reluctant to ally with the Elves, eventually decide to come to the aid of the Grey Havens. With the Dwarves' help, the entire armada is destroyed.
This signals the end of any major Goblin threats in all of northern Middle-earth, which is all very well because Mordor is now preparing to attack.
Sauron decides to prepare his northern Mordor armies for war. The Dwarven king Dáin leads a small group of Dwarves and men to defend Esgaroth, where they lead an assault upon the Mordor fortress on the opposite shoreline. Dain defeats the Mordor army, but they are forced back to Erebor. Dain and his mighty Dwarven armies prepare mighty fortresses outside Dain and prepare their armies and withstand huge waves of Mordor forces. A group of Goblins and Cave Trolls from Mt.Gundabad help the Mordor host to lay siege to the Erebor. Dwarves manage as well as they can on their own despite sneak attacks to seemingly vulnerable entrances, but Elven reinforcements from Mirkwood led by the Elven king Thranduil cement victory for the Dwarves. During the latter stage, the Mouth of Sauron attempts to lead a sneak attack force into Erebor, but a few Phalanx units and Men of Dale in the area, spring into action and defeat the siege party.
To permanently destroy the Evil in the North, the combined Dwarven-Elven armies prepare to attack Dol Guldur, Sauron's main fortress in the North. Elrond leads the first attack, but later, Thranduil, Glorfindel, Glóin, Arwen, and King Dáin all unite under the Dwarven-Elven alliance, aided by the Ents and Eagles. Mordor, to counter the threat, attempt a counterattack from the forest and summon various creatures, including a Watcher, a Dragon, and even the Balrog. Despite these powerful comebacks, the Good forces and its three combined armies overcome the defenses. Using various ancient Elven and Dwarven powers (including horse floods, earthquakes, and sunflares), the army of the Free Peoples destroy the fortress, eliminating the last threat in the North.
The Evil Campaign follows an alternate version of the War in the North. Sauron sends the Mouth of Sauron and the Nazgûl to the North to muster wild Goblins. His lieutenants lead the Goblin army and launch an assault on the Elven forest of Lórien. Despite heavy resistance, the forest is overrun, with Celeborn slain and Galadriel having fled to Rivendell; even Caras Galadhon collapses under the might of the massive invasion. The Mouth peers eagerly into the captured Mirror of Galadriel for his next attack, as his Goblins celebrate their triumph over the Elves amidst the ruins of the once-mighty stronghold. Another group of Goblins, led by the Goblin King, attacks the Grey Havens by land and sea. The Elven port is destroyed, and the march across Eriador begins; Hobbits of the Shire are chosen as the next target. The Goblin King's horde manages to crush the Hobbits and burn their country to the ground, but Wormtongue, one of Saruman's henchmen, suddenly appears with a large army of Isengard Uruks and claims the land for his master. The Goblins annihilate the well-trained army and kill Wormtongue.
The Goblin King continues marching and besieges Fornost, the fortified ruins of the ancient capitol of Arnor. The defenders, consisting of the Dúnedain and Dwarves, mount a heavy defense and even attempt to use a machine of destruction, the Earth Hammer. Nevertheless, they crumble under the relentless Goblin attacks, and Eriador falls under Goblin (and indirectly, Sauron's) control.
Meanwhile, Sauron launches a concurrent campaign east of the Misty Mountains. The forces of Mordor, led once again by the Mouth of Sauron, march from Dol Guldur to eliminate the Elves and the Ents that guard the Forest Road in Mirkwood. Three of the Nazgûl (likely the same ones that attacked Lothlorien) and even Shelob also lead the Mordor army, consisting of Orcs, Trolls, and Corsairs. While claiming the Forest Road, they destroy the Elven stronghold in the woods and defeat the Elf King Thranduil, clearing the large majority of the Elves in the North.
Afterwards, Mordor brings the war to the Dwarves, led by King Dain. The Mouth of Sauron, the Nazgul, and an army of Mordor advance through the Withered Heath, destroying many Dwarven settlements and releasing young dragons (Fire Drakes ) to aid them. After all the Drakes are free and the settlements destroyed, they move on to recruit Drogoth the Dragon Lord.
In one of the most important battles in the North, the Mordor army lays siege to Dale and Erebor. Sauron's initial army attacks various Dale buildings and take the treasure in them. Later on, the Mouth of Sauron and two Nazgul arrive, set up a permanent base, and begin an organized attack on Erebor. Many Dwarven warriors periodically attempt to stop them, but they are all eliminated one by one. Gloin and some other Dwarves attempt to attack the base from behind but they too are slain. After full preparation, the Mouth of Sauron leads the armies of Mordor to the heart of Erebor. King Dain and his Royal Guard attempt to stop them, but they are slain under the relentless hordes. The army proceeds to destroy the Throne of Erebor and gain total victory.
For the final battle, the Goblin horde and Sauron's forces from Mordor converge at Rivendell, the last surviving stronghold against Sauron in Middle-Earth. Eagles, the Army of the Dead and the remnants of the Fellowship of the Ring arrive to help Arwen and Elrond, but Sauron (having attained full power through recovering the One Ring from the dead Frodo) and all his gathered forces enter the battle and completely destroy the remaining Good forces in the North.
battle for middle earth 2 gameplay
Some liberties are being taken with Tolkien's works for the sake of gameplay (and, of course, fidelity to the Jackson films). For example:
- In Tolkien's works the events of the war in the North were very different. The realm of Angmar in the north had been defeated centuries earlier, Rivendell was not attacked outright after the Second Age (though had Sauron been victorious it would no doubt have been, despite the magical protection it enjoyed from the rivers) and there was practically no activity West of the Misty Mountains (apart from the Battle of Bywater). Tolkien wrote of attacks on Dale and Erebor by an army sent out from Mordor and 3 major assaults on Lórien by forces from both Dol Guldur and Moria. While Sauron himself had abandoned Dol Guldur it remained a stronghold for his forces.
- Orcs and goblins were not distinct races, as the game (and films) would have one believe. "Orc" and "goblin" are just different but generally interchangeable terms for the same creatures — even the Uruk-hai are referred to as goblins at some points. Their usage generally depends on who is describing them; Bilbo, a simple hobbit, calls them goblins in his diary, while Elrond, a great Half-elven lord, calls them Orcs. In the Jackson films, "goblins" seem to refer to the smaller mountain versions of Orcs, as seen in Moria. In fairness, The Lord of the Rings: War of the Ring also confuses the two. Fans of the films typically use the term to refer to Moria Orcs. See here for more details.
- Shelob (and by inference, the Spiders of Mirkwood) would not have sided with Orcs. She often captured and ate them (like one orc Ufthak) when they ventured into her lair, as found in The Return of the King. Subsequently, Tolkien wrote nothing about Orcs riding giant spiders. In order to recruit Shelob successfully, Mordor would have had to use considerable power (possibly a massive version of Untamed Allegiance) to prevent her from eating the Orcs as well as the Elves.
Sauron the Great used to destroy his pitiful foes on Battle for Middle Earth 2
- The game features the Rangers of the North, who did not appear in the films except for Aragorn himself. However, it distinguishes them from the Rangers of Ithilien ("Gondor Rangers") by calling them "Dúnedain Rangers". This is incorrect as the two groups of Rangers are both considered Dúnedain. The Rangers of Ithilien were Gondorian descendants of the inhabitants of Ithilien, whilst the Rangers of the North are the remnants of the people of Arnor. Both are considered Dúnedain as the word's translation is literally "Men of the West" or "Númenóreans".
- While Glorfindel is featured, he has white hair. Actually, he is supposed to be blonde; his name, from the start (c. 1917, when his character first appears in writings), meant "golden-haired". Also Glóin has different hair colour as described in the book; he is described as an old dwarf with white hair, but in the game he has red hair.
- Among other things, Tolkien never wrote about "Gorkil" or "Drogoth". However, the last two are arguably based upon the Great Goblin and Tolkien's canonical dragons such as Glaurung, Ancalagon and Smaug; EA cannot use them for copyright reasons. Neither did he write about Arwen actually fighting, though she probably could and would have, when the need arose; see here for details.
- The Isengard faction has the hero units Saruman and Sharku. While in the films Sharku is a Warg-riding Orc, in the books he and Saruman are the same person. Sharku and Sharkey are names referring to Saruman in the original The Return of the King. After his staff is broken, he escapes from Isengard and takes over the Shire, but is defeated by a hobbit uprising led by Merry and friends. This subplot was almost entirely cut in the Jackson films, only being alluded to in Galadriel's mirror.
- Tolkien never used the Old English spelling "wyrm"; he did use the modernized spellng "worm" ("worm" being an archaic term for dragon).
Nevertheless, the game also makes use of more of Tolkien's writings.
- Esgaroth or Lake-town is prominently featured in The Hobbit.
- Thorin and Company pass through the High Pass in The Hobbit, where they are captured by goblins while sheltering in a cave.
- The mountain giants also appear in The Hobbit, though they are little more than a nuisance for Thorin and Company, and appear nowhere else, not even in The Silmarillion.
- The cave bats seem inspired by the vampire bats in The Hobbit, who hovered over the Battle of the Five Armies, feeding upon the fallen.
- The barrow-wights, who did not get an appearance in the films, appear.
- Tom Bombadil appears in the game, who also did not get an appearance in the films. However, readers may find him out of place in a war game, given his nature in the books (even though while plowing through units he sings merrily and skips, and his only special move is a sonic wave, which is itself far from the book); also, his concept art features him with a white beard, whereas Tolkien quite clearly described him as old yet brown-haired.
- The producers have echoed Tolkien's own intent by making Galadriel usable in battle. He wrote about her and Celeborn fighting the Noldor at the Kinslaying at Alqualondë in the First Age, though this is not mentioned in The Silmarillion and only in Unfinished Tales.
Other than the heroes of the book and the films, five characters from the role-playing game The Lord of the Rings: The Third Age (also published by EA) also appear in the game:
- Hadhod, a Dwarven warrior
- Berethor, a captain of Gondor
- Morwen, a shieldmaiden of Rohan
- Idrial, an Elf-witch
- Thrugg, an Uruk
They do not play a part in the campaign, since they were following the Fellowship, except Thrugg, who was only in The Hobbit. They instead are used as starter heroes for the player in the Create-a-Hero mode.
Expansion Set Edit
Electronic Arts has officially announced The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth II: The Rise of the Witch-king recently finished. 
Mods for BfME open up new factions, new units and new heroes. The most famous mod is the BfME II Special extended edition, a mod that makes the game realistic and fun, for example you are given three Nazgul, this mod gives all nine. The Special Extended Edition can be found here: http://forums.revora.net/forum/1478-special-extended-edition/. Other mods are total conversions. Mods that completely change the game with a new heroes, new storyline. Like the Four Ages mod, takes you to the first age or Battle for the Caribbean mod allows you to take the storyline of Pirates of the Caribbean
|This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth II. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with The One Wiki to Rule Them All, the text of Wikipedia is available under the Commons Attribution-Share Alike license.|
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Radcliffe, Doug. The Lord of the Rings, The Battle for Middle-earth II Game Guide. GameSpot. Retrieved on 2008-12-21.
- Middle-earth Center, a fansite
- Clanwars.cc, a gaming ladder and tournaments site
- Battle for Middle-earth II Heaven