This post was updated on .
NEW VERSION 1.1.1 (Thanks to Frostion for this version)
Download here (you can also download it from the map repository soon)
Finally we have an AI that is capable of playing this map. Lot of thanks to the developers.
The map is still unbalanced. Please share your experiences! Which player do you think is the strongest, which is the weakest? Which player should be stronger/weaker? What is your favourite unit (or unit combination) and why? Which unit is so useless you would never buy any?
I am not native English, so you can tell me about grammatical errors if you find any.
Version 1.1.1 Changelog (work done by Frostion)
- New map design
- Sounds changed to classical
- Other minor changes
Version 1.1 (for TripleA 18.104.22.168) Changelog
- Added new units for better balance
- Sea units option is now editable, added territory connections instead of canals
- Isengard is now the Industrial Might of Middle Earth (12 PUs -> 20 PUs)
- Renamed net --> web, spear --> formation and militia --> garrison for more clarity
- Changes in unit graphics
- Added small flags
- Other minor changes
- Ships can pass canals even if land territories are controlled by the enemy. This is because canals are not actually canals, but territory connections (canals do not work for some reason. A solution would be appreciated. You can enable canals in 30 seconds in the xml.)
- Game option "Fortification prevents charge and flank" does not prevent defender charge and flank.
If you want to download the game, but the link says "Sorry, the file you requested is not available. This file has been deleted and it cannot be restored. Please contact the sender and ask them to upload the file again." then really just leave a comment! (The file automatically gets deleted if there is no demand for it.) Hopefully I notice it soon, but be patient, I don't visit the forum every week.
Then, at least I will know if anyone is playing the map apart from me.
@alkexr - Are you looking to get this map uploaded to the official repository?
Also, have you tested it with the new 'Hard AI'?
PS - The download doesn't work. If you are looking for this to become official then please follow the instructions here: http://tripleadev.1671093.n2.nabble.com/Post-here-to-request-having-your-map-on-the-Map-Repository-uploaded-or-updated-tp7058428.html
Yes, I would appreciate if it got uploaded to the official repository, and I have already left a comment on the thread you linked (it is on page 6), though no one seems to have noticed it so far. I didn't even get a notification there is something wrong with my request, so I didn't force it.
No, I haven't played this map in the recent months, so no. Also there was no playtest against human opponents, so I can't say too much about balance. (Well, it should actually be balanced, I have several good reasons for it, but unfortunately no evidence.) I hope, however, that at least this AI understands that mountains are impassable to most units (the other AIs just keep trying to enter them, ending in massive armies stacked on the territory before the mountains).
Yes, I know it didn't work, that's exactly what my preivous post was about. Now the link is updated.
no native english speaker, which language you prefer ?
i can have a look with you for the map that it gets uploaded.
whats the status actually ?
dl it from here:
Large Middle Earth - Third Age All Stars
1. the zip file is not setup correctly.
you have zipped the folder Large_Middle_Earth.
the correct way would be, you place your cursor inside the folder and zip the content of the folder only.
the zip file includes only the content of the folder, not the folder itself.
best is to use 7-zip, it makes it fast and the smallest zip files.
please get in contact with me, wgbt(at)gmx.at, to speed this up.
I have to try this map! Seems like there are a lot of interesting advanced unit configurations, cool map properties and many hours of playtime :) But I will have to wait to a a week or so until I get back to my home.
BUMP: I want to keep this thread for any discussion related to the map. New information about the map itself can be found in the post at the top of the thread, which is updated to the latest version of the game.
Also, can someone help with html? The post at the top doesn't seem to show up properly in chrome. In IE it is better, but far from what I want.
A thing that always bugs me when I see pre-gunpowder medievalish/ancientish games is that about inevitably you meet the two usual units "spearman" and "swordsman", which doesn't make any sense to me. Why spearman can't have a sword as a secondary weapon, or why swordsman can't equip themselves also with a spear, and keep the sword in the scabbard? Are spearman supposed to be so extremely poor not to be even able to get a sword?
Normally, when you don't use a spear, it is to free your hands for using javelins or other throwing stuff, not to just use the sword, that you can have anyway, while having also the spear.
Also archers, crossbowmen etc. were normally equipped with swords, as secondary weapons. About everyone had a (usually short) sword as his secondary weapon, up until the late modern age.
Sorry for the pointless kind of off topic, but almost every time I see a medievalish game I meet this spearmen/swordsmen distinction that I think should not be.
The normal distinction between inferior and superior shielded infantries should rather be between those able to wear only gambeson and those able to afford mail armour.
Of course, this is not helping, but since this spearman/swordsman division is everywhere, I felt needing pointing this out somewhere.
I look forward giving your map a run sometime, since the AI now handles, but guess maybe waiting a bit more for some canopener skills soon to be developed.
I also believe that it would be better much limiting the use of terrains, as they increase complexity dramaticaly (like make them very easy to remember (which is definitively not the way you have set them; since here the territory effect table is almost an undecifrable matrix that makes overly hard to optimize your gameplay, and I think will convince most people not even trying out this map)) and having 20% of territories with terrains (meaning only those with really extreme conditions) and 80% without any terrains (any normal territories)).
I believe terrains should be an alternative to those silly impassable forest/swamp/etc.; and be very cautious trying having them not making the game too rule complex. Just My Opinion.
History plays dice
Of course most soldiers had a shortsword with them, but that can't really be used as a primary weapon.
The melee capabilities of archers and crossbowmen are calculated into battle mechanics: they don't die instantly if nothing protects them (which would be rather problematic to solve in TripleA anyways). At least that's how I see it.
There was actually a different reason why I made this distinction. I like complexity, so I needed more unit types :)
Terrain effects: you shouldn't bother calculating the exact strength of armies even without terrain effects if you have a battle calculator at hand. You don't have to decipher that matrix, it's enough to know that cavalry is likely to suffer penalties on rough terrain, a river is an advantageous defensive position etc., just a lot of rules like what you would expect.
All in all I see your point, but: I created this map something like two years ago. At that time I was fed up with two map types (I still am):
1. where the cheapest unit is just so cheap as a cannon fodder that there is absolutely no point in buying any other unit (1/2/1 for 3PUs, usually)
2. where you don't have to keep in mind but to maintain a healthy ratio between artillery and infantry, and you'll play optimally
So the main concept in creating units was that no unit or unit combination is optimal. Instead, different units perform well in different circumstances. What circumstances can affect a units performance in TripleA engine? Basically other (allied or enemy) units and territory effects. That's the reason for the extensive use of territory effects.
Now my ideology has changed, and I think of an ideal map more like you do than I did when I made this map, so I understand what you mean. Still, that is the whole point of this map, so I won't spoil it. I have been thinking of creating a mod for this map, but I'm not going to have time for that in the near future.
And I'm happy that people have ideas what they call "pointless topics".
If you want help with the graphics, then please post or mail me a link to what you have of original big map picture of skin/reliefTiles/baseTiles. You can just make a big zip or something. I can see what I can do. I can take a look at them, but I can’t promise anything. It could be fun to try.
I think these two files were the final versions, but there are just so many seemingly idetnical or almost identical files in my map creation folder that I can't tell which one I actually used.
The relief map is transparent, but I only used two colors (a completely transparent and a greyish transparent one), so it should be easy to manipulate. (And for the same reason the file is so small in size that I didn't bother zipping it).
This post was updated on .
I have tried to spice up the graphics a bit. It still looks much like your old design, but I have added a bit of transparent terrain, sea and colored borders. Now the nation color is coloring the terrain, plus there is a colored border in territories. The new art should allow you to continue any work, change, experimentation with nation colors and unit art. I hope you like the new stuff.
PS: You should really add the Sounds.properties file with Sound.Default.Folder=classical. It is strange to hear motors and machinegun fire in LotR
I have made 3 versions with different “terrain vs nation color” ratio. I like the balanced version 2 the most, but maybe you like it more colored (v1) or more uncolored/more terrain (v3).
You have to play with “Show map details ON” (I think this is TripleAs standard setting.)
Moreover, It looks best with “Show map blends OFF” (I also think this is TripleAs standard setting.)
Here is the new stuff:
(Just some artwork for you to save)
(The files you must use. Remove the old files from your map dir, and add these. Remember to rename reliefTilesV2 dir to reliefTiles.)
UPDATE: Try out this version. It is has a more bright sea than the other versions. The others have a pretty dark, maybe too dark, sea.
PRECONDITIONS FOR MAP UPLOAD 400px Picture:
By the way … I think you should adjust the white, light grey and dark grey player colors. The white and light grey are very alike, especially on the map I edited.
Wow, that just looks incomparably better than my original design, or at least that's my first impression comparing the images in this thread. I can't try it out until weekend in the game, but I'm looking forward to it.
I haven't really cared about sounds, partly because I prefer playing with sounds off, partly because I have no idea how to have any effect on them. But I will try it following those bits of information in that single sentence of yours :)
I realized too that light grey and white look similar, but I also determined that it's just an optical illusion. Not that it changed anything, so you are right. I never had the least problem telling dark grey from light grey, though. Probably, with this new design, dark blue will be an available player color to replace light grey (it was problematic because water is dark blue, too), but again, I can only check that on the weekend at the earliest.
I will give you more feedback later, as soon as I know more. But anyway, you have my thanks.
In reply to this post by Frostion
I decided to chose the more colored v1 version. On v3 units kind of glow compared to the background. The same is true for v2 to a lesser extent, but that is very nice too. Maybe I will adjust unit colors to this new design in the future, but for now I think I will ask for this version to be uploaded.
Great map, lots of history/flavor with many interesting positions and new mechanics, good work. Also good work Vegryn to update the battle calculator.
Ive only found one very minor bug, the popup for the dwarf axemen and axethrower is not correct, although the values shown at the purchase menu are correct.
In the game notes it says that every nation will collect income after their capitol has fallen. In the games ive playes nations with fallen capitols can neither collect nor spend remaining pous. This could be a bug.
If i were to improve the map i would give all flying units 1HP, and make the dragon, eagle, flying nazgul immune to AA. It does gives flavor when the dragon has 3HP and eagle/nazgul 2HP but i think it reduces the complexity of the game in mid/late game. Most of this problem is related to the eagle, as the high elf has the position/economy to produce 1 each round where mordor/Angmar pretty much cant. So when the mid game is reached the eagles will shut down all minor skirmishes in the centre of the map, thus resulting in larger stacks, less complexity and a slower paced game.
This change will harm the Evil in the early game (as they start with 4 four of these bad boys) but will benefit them later on as these units won’t die in the first round of combat in bigger battles due to AA. Personally i would start this rebalance thing with just putting one piece of wall in Withered heath. Ive tried these changes myself and i think it made for a better game.
As for AA now becoming a bit flat as it will only affect the Bats you could consider to give the woodElf and/or northmen a hawk and the naga_scermisher AA. But this is of course another topic.
As for the layout of the map its awesome. I see two possible improvements that I think would give the player some interesting and hard choices.
1. The freefolk vs Isengard/Orc front is a bit static. I would consider to put a circular piece of land (plains, that is no river, no settlement) connecting South Mirhriath and Isen Nort Band. This would give the freefolk a very interesting angle to penetrate into Evil lands but at the risk of the orc cutting off their "main" army from their production facilities. The problem right now is that Thorbad is to easy to defend (river+settlement).This would probably benefit the Good side.
2. In the late game in my experience things turn out to be a little of east vs west. One way to increase the complexity in the late game is to cut West Mountains of Angmar into two. Where the upper part will be plains and connect East Frochel Coast to West Forodwaith. This will open the option for Ruhn (who are very strong on plains) to completely skip the siege of Dale, and bypass everything and go into the (by this time usually) undefended area of the Good side lands. This will benefit the Evil side.
Well, thats a few ideas, and again, thanks for a very good map.
Thanks for feedback, i'm very excited to find some answers. You made many good points, so i'm looking forward to having some time to consider them and reply more than just this, though i'm afraid it's not going to happen until next week or so. And it delights me to know that people actually play my map and have a good time, so thank you for the moral support, too.
In reply to this post by Jim
I fixed the first bug. As for the second one, i think i followed the pact of steel 2 xml. If this feature is not working, then probably i will just fix game notes. Interesting that i haven't noticed this though.
I see a plenty of options to this. Air units with multiple hitpoints give a uniqe flexibility in strategy, getting rid of them would be a difficult decision. But i see your worry concerning large stacks of such units.
Maybe making eagles a bit more expensive and/or depriving high elves of some of their income and/or weakening their starting army would make them think twice to buy eagles each turn, because they will be busy trying to protect Rivendell.
Although i don't think skirmishers are of any use against flying beasts IRL, it's a shame Angmar and Dol Guldur don't have any anti-air capability, so giving them some is a well-made point; but since it is their most basic unit, it would take away any chance from enemy air units. Anti-air units should counter air units, but your point makes me realize that currently they don't fit this role well enough. Antiair mechanics can be altered so that it fires first battle round only, but with greater power - in this case even moderately large stacks of eagles can be easily overpowered by only a few archers. It's also possible to set them to insta-kill, instead of damaging two-hit units.
But we also have to consider the case of winged nazgul (dragons aren't interesting in this matter, because there really shouldn't be more than like 2 of them). They are most effective leading large armies into large battles, so there will very likely be many archers on the opposing side. But winged nazgul aren't to be shot to pieces the first time they enter combat.
So instead, i thought of the following changes to anti-air mechanics:
1. fires first round only, but larger firepower, maybe even 12 (to seriously endanger air-only missions against armies protected by archers)
2. fires at most once per target (to somewhat protect winged nazgul against masses of archers)
Tough decisions, still haven't made any, waiting for ideas.
If, however, i decide to single-HP-ificate air units, then i also turn anti-air into a support attachment from a special attack. In that case eagles are countered even by a penalty of 2 (attacking at 2x2 instead of 4x2), but leaves too much of the winged nazgul's power intact (attacks at 5 instead of 7, still gives 12 leadership and 12 terror). Keep in mind though that in this case i have to lower the cost of eagles severely, and they will really be swarming around, still disrupting any operations by small stacks once they reach the frontline.
The two questions are strongly connected.
The east-west division is predetermined: if you make a lotr map, that's what's going to happen, unless you diverge from canon. This is most annoying in the case of Eriador (the large lands centered around Freefolk, spanning to Tharbad in the south, Rivendell in the east and Carn Dum in the northeast), and makes the game especially boring for Freefolk. I have long been thinking about this problem.
By the way, that's the reason why Tharbad is so valuable: Saruman is meant to take it and use it as a base for operations further into Eriador. A shame that AI doesn't realize this oportunity.
What you suggest on the north would be opposed to a map-making "proverb": Don't turn wastelands into highways. It takes ~6 moves for Rhun to reach Eriador in the way you suggest, as opposed to ~12 moves otherwise. It wouldn't really help them anyway: they would probably be stopped by the massive stacks sieging Carn Dum. And i'm not amazed by the idea of having to make modifications to the map itself.
On the south i see an option. Without modifying the map, a territory connection could be added between e.g. Eregion and Greyflood North Bank, or any two territories you like. I don't know how it would affect the game though.
I have been thinking about the territory effects and decided to consider and try, at least, to make them simpler. Do you have any idea how that could be done without making different units perform too similarly on different terrain? In other words, how would it be easier to remember, but still complex?
When I implemented territory effects on my fantasy map, Dragon War, I made 1 territory affect 1 type of unit. With a “type” I mean; does it have two legs or four? Is it a war machine?. Like this:
I think it is easy to remember. Maybe you could have some other categories? Like racial categories?
oh wow this map turned out very good looking!! i hope you wouldnt mind me stealing/copying adjusting this map at some point to a likeable version for the lobby :)
In reply to this post by Frostion
I follow the development of your maps, even though there is no much sign of me there, so i have seen your territory effect mechanics, but i thought of it as being too simple. But now, as you mention it, i had an idea:
Instead of considering all possible traits of a unit when determining how it reacts to different terrain, i will choose the most prominent one. For example, currently a knight is affected by three columns: "cavalry", "armored" and "all". Out of theese, cavalry is the most prominent, so i will choose that one to determine the effect, and simply ignore the rest. I haven't yet thought about what categories there should be, though.
I don't know what exactly do you mean under "adjusting this map at some point to a likeable version for the lobby", but feel free to steal it. Of course you always have the option to share your ideas, too.
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