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July 12th Update: Gondor Spellbook


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#21 Swan_Knight93

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 01:09 AM

I totally agree with Yarrum. The knights from the Rhovanion Alliance would look better than these. Just touch up the textures to bring them up to quality. Also in The Return of the King the Knights of Dol Amroth are described as having grey horses. Not that that is really important, but it would be a nice touch.

#22 mike_

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 01:28 AM

Personally, I think that they look great for a single supportive unit that won't be used for the majority of the game and has already been modeled, textured and coded into the mod files.

#23 _Haldir_

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 03:49 AM

Personally, I think that they look great for a single supportive unit that won't be used for the majority of the game and has already been modeled, textured and coded into the mod files.

Totally agree. I don't see why everyone is complaining about the knights, when they're beautifully done, and are a unique and elegant alternative to the all-too-common, "stick wings on the side of a Gondor helmet" approach that WETA and every other mod seems to go for ;).

Besides which, it's not unreasonable to assume that the knights of Dol Amroth would have their own distinct style of armor, different to that of other common Gondor soldiers. They're fiefdom units - i don't think a little individuality and variety between the different Gondorian troops is a bad thing. You'll get used to them.


This is so amazing, your mod is the best one for bfme1, for sure. But I don't like the idea of a random unit you get from a beacon. Random powers in RTS-games seem unatrractive to me.

A fair point, though you don't have to purchase random troops if you don't want to, the beacon still gives you a leadership bonus just for being there. Also, you probably won't be relying on the beacon units for much of your army, due to their random selection, and their inability to be upgraded (other than with banners). If anything, you'd probably want to use them more for raiding or quick defenses - in which case, it doesn't matter so much that they are random ;).

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#24 Aranornth

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 05:26 AM

Liking the new power replacing Elven Wood, it shows so much more of a Gondor feel to it; also the beacon looks nice so bold and realilistic looking. Nice update overall.

#25 m@tt

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 02:21 PM

Dol Amroth designs are tricky. Personally, I've never seen one that I really liked - be it BFME II, WETA or our stuff. But then I haven't got any better ideas! And what ever the case, what Nertea has done is of his usual high quality.
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#26 Swan_Knight93

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 02:21 PM

I you read the book you will find that the knights of Dol Amroth are described as having tall helms. These are not tall. They are also described as being in full harness. This means that the horses would have been in armor, a plate of the forehead, plates down the neck, a chain-mail skirt, and so on. These don,t have any of this. Also the knights are supposed to have bright armor, being that they are heavy knights this would mean that they would have as much or more armor then the regular soldiers. These don't wear any plate armor on their torsos. On top of that the coat-of-arms of Dol Amroth is a ship with a swan prow, not just a swan. All this taken into consideration I would say that these knights do not even remotely fit the description given by Tolkien. While they are great for what they are, what they are is, not Knights of Dol Amroth. As far as them being unique from the regular soldiers that is fine, but not at the expense of remaining true the the book. If you were making a mod for the Crusades you wouldn't have soldiers that look like samurai, would you.

#27 Lauri

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 03:33 PM

How come I don't see any complaints about Men of Minas Tirith wearing plate armour when the books are rather specific about their looks?

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#28 {IRS}Athos

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 04:02 PM

Because they had plate armor in the movie and many people worship the movie as the One True Interpretation? :p

Although I do think that the KoDA look slightly medieval for Gondor, I think that it does make some sense for them to be so. They live a long way away from Minas Tirith, and half the coast of Gondor is far enough away to have a different style of armor.

Edited by {IRS}Athos, 15 July 2011 - 04:02 PM.

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#29 Swan_Knight93

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 04:14 PM

Where in the book dose it say that the men of Minas Tirith do not were plate armor. I have read the book many times and never remember it saying anything about the men of Minas Tirith lacking plate armor. It says that the Guards of the Citadel were black tunics with the silver tree, but they are not doing battle when they are described. Besides the men of Minas Tirith are not in question in this discussion. I highly doubt that the entire Gondor design would be changed to fit with the design of these knights, while it is still somewhat possible that the knights could be changed to fit with the current Gondor design.
Also, one of the unique things about Tolkien as a writer is that that cultures that he created had so much depth (he even created entire histories for them)that they seem to progress like cultures do in the real world. That being said, if you look at the progression of armor you will find that to have a completely different style of armor like these knights have you would have to have very little connection between the two styles.It took the space of all of Europe to separate drastic changes in armor design during the middle ages. Gondor is not that big at the time of the war of the ring. Sorry if I am writing a lot, it is just that that knights of Dol Amroth are my personal favorites, and I would like to see justice done to Tolkien's description of them.

Edited by Swan_Knight93, 15 July 2011 - 04:26 PM.


#30 Lauri

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 04:35 PM

Hmm, I might remember wrong on the plate part, if that is the case, my bad ;)

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#31 Spartan184

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 05:10 PM

You guys are making a big deal over nothing. You wont even see the unit in game much because its a summon and it will probably become a useless unit in mid\late game. Also its not like you play zoomed into your units to see every detail and make sure it lotrish. Now stop nit picking Nertea's hard work.


 

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#32 Swan_Knight93

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 07:33 PM

I have very high respect for Nertea and all the work he has done. As I have said I think this is by far the best mod for BFME out there. It is just that personally I think it could be improved for the better with a little change. Of course if Nertea really doesn't want to change the knights they are not going to get changed.

#33 Rob38

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 07:57 PM

Remnants of Numenor is a very creative alternative to the Elven Wood Power. I like it. :good: I also think you did an excellent job on the Dol Amroth knights, and I really have no issue with their design. For the Beacon building, perhaps you should consider providing a small resource amount for the building? Since econ plots are so precious in BFME1, using one up without receiving any money boost may discourage many from ever building one during a game. Perhaps give the same resource amount as a castle keep? Just a suggestion. Finally, I absolutely love changes made to the army of the dead. Really cool!

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#34 Nertea

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 08:08 PM

I figured I'd let the arguments pile up before I answered. The only 'legitimate' complaint is the closed-faced helms... but I will keep the swan imagery I worked into those before I go back to some generic helmet-with-wings. I have two or three pages of sketches with open-face concepts and none of them keep the symbology as effectively as this. My loathing for the GW design is up there, and the TW team's version not far behind.

If you read the book you will find that the knights of Dol Amroth are described as having tall helms. These are not tall.

The single quote describing the Knights says they were "tall as lords", nothing to do with helms. Other important keys: "knights in full harness", "ship AND the silver swan". Later, "the Prince of Dol Amroth in his shining mail", and a mention of Imrahil noticing condensation from breath on his shining bracers. The only conclusion you can draw from this is that they wore chainmail with metal vambraces and had a blue banner. Honestly, you could do almost anything at this point and call it "correct to Tolkien's description". A smurf with vambraces would work.

Where in the book dose it say that the men of Minas Tirith do not were plate armor. I have read the book many times and never remember it saying anything about the men of Minas Tirith lacking plate armor. It says that the Guards of the Citadel were black tunics with the silver tree, but they are not doing battle when they are described.

No, it says that they have a "hauberk of steel rings", with a surcoat overtop (from the description of Pippin's garb, which is stated to be the livery of the elite Tower Guard). It's pretty conclusive. Nobody in the Tolkien fiction wears full (or even semi) plate either... and with the number of times he mentions "mail" you'd think he would have said something about plate. If you want more evidence, UT tells us that Rohan gets their armour from Gondor in exchange for horses. Detailed descriptions of the mail and cloth used by Rohan are present in the books - conclusively, they get this from Gondor. That being said, I respect Weta's interpretation, it works just as well and I happen to like it quite a lot. We use something closer to the book description for Gondor's Light Armor textures.

On top of that the coat-of-arms of Dol Amroth is a ship with a swan prow, not just a swan.

When upgraded with banners, the bearer carries a swan banner, I believe. That insignia is also present on Imrahil's shield and design. See above quote for why you can have both.

Also, one of the unique things about Tolkien as a writer is that that cultures that he created had so much depth (he even created entire histories for them)that they seem to progress like cultures do in the real world. That being said, if you look at the progression of armor you will find that to have a completely different style of armor like these knights have you would have to have very little connection between the two styles.

Do you know what culture Gondor descends from? Numenor. The closest thing we have to Numenorean troops in the movies are the troops in the Prologue battle who, as you'll see, wear mail and surcoats. If I want to design something that is closer to Numenor than Gondor (as the fief of Dol Amroth is repeatedly described) I should stylistically go closer to Numenor, right? Think about that a bit. I can throw in more of my logic in here as well - there's a case to be made for Gondor's plate based on events that happened earlier in the Third Age and a solid case to made that it wouldn't affect a far-removed princedom. I can provide this if you like.

It took the space of all of Europe to separate drastic changes in armor design during the middle ages

The larger separator of armor design is not space, but class and income. The same knights that wore Gothic plate lived mere meters from the unwashed peasants that wore boiled leather into battle. You can't argue that there's not enough space for difference, because there clearly is. Tolkien doesn't delineate along geographic boundaries, the borders are cultural.

You don't have an argument to stand on to tell me that I'm wrong. It boils down to "they're not like I imagined". That is too bad - unfortunately I can't please everyone. If you don't like them, don't use the summon ;).

But really, even if it were 'wrong', I still wouldn't change it. Why? I put a good amount of hours modeling and texturing these, and that's not going to waste.

I think it could be improved for the better with a little change.

The amount of work I put into designing and building a new unit is not a little change.

Edited by Nertea, 15 July 2011 - 08:09 PM.

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#35 Swan_Knight93

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 11:25 PM

It is finished. I do not agree, but I admit defeat. I could argue the point further, and site references from the book but I won't. After all it is your mod, all I can do is suggest. Sorry if I offended you in any way. :mellow:

#36 Nertea

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Posted 17 July 2011 - 05:29 PM

None taken really, but I think you'll find that I cited the references right there ;).

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#37 Námo

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Posted 17 July 2011 - 07:09 PM

On top of that the coat-of-arms of Dol Amroth is a ship with a swan prow, not just a swan.

When upgraded with banners, the bearer carries a swan banner, I believe. That insignia is also present on Imrahil's shield and design. See above quote for why you can have both.

Only using the swan would be correct according to lore.

Some old notes on the ship and the swan:

Some info from a PM send to another member a long time ago, might eventually be useful for others, too.


[...]

BELFALAS, as region the peninsula between Cobas Haven and the mouth of the rivers Gilrain/Serni [Linhir] including (most of) the land on both sides of the Hills south of Tarnost. It is unclear whether the eastern part of Dor-en-Ernil (land of the prince) is part of the region Belfalas or the region Lebennin. In the west it probably included the area around Edhellond.

Fiefdom:

  • Belfalas was one great fief, ruled by Prince Imrahil of Dol Amroth, the fortified promotory to the south of Cobas Haven. The Fief of Dol Amroth was the greatest and strongest of all the southern fiefdoms.

    It is the only fief with heraldy mentioned in the lore: "The Prince of Dol Amroth, Kinsman of The Lord of Minas Tirith, bears the token of a golden ship and a silver swan;" [HoMe Vol. VIII p. 287] - in RotK there are no references to the color of the ship, only to the silver swan, and sometimes it's only the swan that's mentioned!

    [my personal interpretation of this is that the silver swan is symbolic of the princes' elvish heritage, and the golden ship their númenorean heritage - or the silver swan as symbol of Dol Amroth, and the golden ship symbol of Belfalas] - I know that these are usually pictured as being both white (or silver) on a blue background, but this is the only reference I can find on the colors of those symbols, but I might have overlooked something [I can't find the first five volumes of HoMe, might be in a box somewhere, or I've lost them]


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#38 Swan_Knight93

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Posted 17 July 2011 - 08:30 PM

I simply mean things like, You say the description of Gondor armor comes from Pippin's citadel guard armor. Then this is assumed to cover all Gondor armor, including the knights, correct? But you said that they are not described as having tall helms. The Return of the King. Page 10, Chapter 1, Mninas Tirith, "The Guards of the gate were robed in black, and their helms were of strange shape, high-crowned, with long cheek-guards close-fitting to the face, and above the cheek-guards were set the white wings of sea-birds." Logically, if the description of Pippin's armor applies to all the men of Gondor, then the high-crowned (tall) helms of the citadel guard should as well. Also could you please tell me were it says that Gondor and Rohan trade armor for horses. :thumbsupsmiley:

#39 Lauri

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Posted 17 July 2011 - 09:27 PM

:facepalm: He never said that they applied to all men of Gondor

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#40 Yarrum

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Posted 17 July 2011 - 09:30 PM

Well, I'll trust Nertea's artistic vision, even if I'm not happy about it. :crazed:

Anyone agree with me about the horse barding thing though.

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