The Lord of the Rings: Battle for Middle Earth II is the sequel to the popular RTS game, The Lord of the Rings: Battle for Middle Earth. It was published by EA and uses the Sage engine. Both games are based on the books by J.R.R. Tolkien and the "The Lord of the Rings" movie franchise.
The game used music from the films and also received an expansion titled "Rise of the Witch King" on November 28th, 2006.
The Lord of the Rings: Battle for Middle Earth II uses the same point-and-click game play mechanics as many other RTS games. You could hypothetically go through the entire game without needing to use the keyboard at all.
The Lord of the Rings: Battle for Middle Earth II features a "build anywhere" style that allows you to create buildings and structures anywhere that you want. This is a big step forward from the previous game where you could only build on pre-determined spots on the map.
The game plays like most other RTS games where the number of units you have and your amount of resources is crucial in your success. Battle for Middle Earth II also has a key structure called a fortress. Your fortress is your most important structure. It allows you to create heroes and builders, and is the determining factor in who wins the game. By this I mean that in order to win a game, you must destroy the other teams' fortress. This is keyed toward the strategy factor because if you don't have a fortress, you cant make more "builders" thus leaving you very vulnerable, but you cant skip destroying their other structures and units or else they will be attack you with worse consequences for you and you will then be left with the task of having to rebuild your army.
Almost everything in the game is upgradeable. Your units will automatically upgrade in ranks depending on their combat experience. This encourages the player to try to keep their units instead of just allowing them to die. When a unit or battalion upgrades, they will be more powerful in battle. You are also able to purchase a banner carrier each of your battalions who will buff your entire battalion with more strength and resilience. All structures are also upgradeable. Fortresses can be upgraded by making walls, adding more armor, and adding defenses such as towers filled with archers. Resource buildings upgrade automatically after they have been in play for a while and will add new defensive features to help kill off invading enemies. Research structures can be upgraded to produce more upgrades for your units such as armor and weapon upgrades. Finally, structures which produce units can be upgraded by allowing you to purchase different and more powerful units.
When gathering resources, the efficiency of your resource building depends on the terrain. All buildings are more efficient when they are in open areas with very little objects or other structures in their way. Resource buildings such as lumber mills will also be way more efficient if you place them closer to trees.
The game features six faction, 3 of them are evil, and three of them are good. You can fight as elves , dwarves and men for the good and orcs, goblins, and Uruk-hai for the evil side. Each has it's own perks and weakness'. I.E. Mordor, whose orcs are cheap but not very strong. Each faction has about 5 heroes although the dwarves only have 3. In the expansion pack The Lord of The Rings: The Rise of The Witch King, a new faction is added as well as some heroes, buildings and units.
You are able to chose to fight for either good or evil. This adds more diversity to the game but also makes replaying the game more interesting. The story highlights some of the events of the novel which may be unfamiliar to audiences of the New Line Cinema films. As EA Games had acquired a license from Tolkien Enterprises as well as one for the films, they used the battles in the north as the focal point. This was done to inform fans of the movies of the other fights that took place in the story but was also done because the first game already features all of the main battles.
Fighting for the good side takes you through the story, fighting hordes of evil in an attempt to destroy the One but when fighting for the evil side, your mission is to take over the entire Middle-Earth by any means necessary/possible.
Unlike the previous game, Battle for Middle Earth II is set mainly in the northern regions of Middle Earth. For the Good campaign, the story starts in Rivendell where goblins from the Misty Mountains are planning their attack. For the Evil campaign, it begins with the siege of Lothlórien from Mordor's stronghold of Dol Guldur in Mirkwood.
In the novel, it is explained that while the battles that the members of the Fellowship of the Ring are experiencing are indeed the main ones, the war also took place in many other regions across Middle-Earth.
The Battle for Middle Earth II features heroes. Heroes are units which are a lot more powerful than the other units available in the game. They feature the main characters of the story such as Gandalf and Sauron but there are also new heroes made for the game which were not in the original novels or in the movies. Each faction and race has its' own "heroes".
You can also create your own hero. You can chose how they look, their attributes, their buffs, and their individual attacks. This allows the user to create a hero specifically for their style of play to further strengthen their strategy.
Men of the West:
- Gorkil the Goblin King
- Drogoth the Dragon Lord
The Battle for Middle-earth II has over forty different locations in the campaign modes, which include:
* The Shire
* Fangorn Forest
* The Black Gate
* Grey Havens
* Tower Hills
* Mount Doom
* Gladden Fields
* Arnor * Horlindon
* Black Gate * Helms Deep
* Buckland * High Pass
* Cair Andros * Iron Hills
* Celduin River * Isengard
* Dagorlad * Ithilien
* Dead Marshes * Lorien
* Dol Guldur * Minas Morgul
* Dunland * Minas Tirith
* Enedwaith * Minhiriath
* Erebor * Mirkwood
* Ettenmoors * Mordor
* Fangorn * Mount Doom
* Forlindon * Osgiliath
* Gap of Rohan * Rhun
* Gondor * Rivendell
* Gray Havens * Shire
* Harad * Tower Hills
War of the Ring mode
War of the ring mode is a turn based game in Battle For Middle Earth II. The player chooses one of the six races who they play as. The player and their opponent take turns moving their units across a map of Middle-Earth, capturing neutral or opposing territories. You are able to build structures such as garrisons on territories you own to create new units or to add defenses. To win, you must either claim the enemy's capital territory or control a certain number of territories.
If you and your opponent land on the same territory, you must fight each other. Whoever wins, gets to claim that territory. You can chose to either fight in a skirmish or you can chose to simulate the battle. Simulating the battle decides who would win by the number of units and each unit's strengths and weaknesses. This is a lot quicker than doing a full skirmish but you will also seem to lose a lot more units by simulating.
Xbox 360 Version
Battle for Middle Earth II on the Xbox 360 has a few changes in it from the PC version which include:
* Four new multiplayer-modes: "Capture and Hold", "King of the Hill", "Resource Race" and "Hero vs. Hero"
* A new Interface and gamepad-optimized controls for the console
* Unlockable heroes in place of creating your own hero
* No "War of the Ring" mode
* Multiplayer is limited to 4 players over Xbox Live
* Reduced command point limit
Hints and Tips
*Use battle towers when you have to watch over two or more different battles at once.
*Easier way to select the whole army is hit the Right Trigger (Xbox 360 version) and select full army, this way if you have troops
you don't know about, they will follow your commands as well.
*If you want to get a match going online, your best bet is to go to a forum and arrange a time.