Tales of Middle-Earth mod is available for download!
At present, we are releasing ToME as a beta version (version 0.6). With your help, we will be able to test the mod beyond what out alpha playtesters could accomplish.
So please try it out and let us know about any bugs you spot, or any suggestions and balance tweaks using the ToME Forum or through comments right here.
Go ahead, jump right into Middle-earth. Only a small download away...
Tales of Middle Earth (ToME) is the first ever fully playable total conversion for AoK based on the works of J.R.R Tolkien. Featuring full 18 realms of Middle-earth including Elves, Men of the West, the Rohirrim, Southrons and the Easterlings, and the evil forces under Mordor and Angmar. Bring to life all your favourite battles and stories from The Lord of the Rings on maps of real Middle-earth locations. From the keen archers of Lórien to the trolls of Mordor; the Rangers of the North to the dreaded giant Mûmakil – as many as 70 new units, with over a hundred new building graphics and wonders from the Middle-earth.
- Play from the Fall of Beleriand to the Great Years and the War of the Ring.
- Choose from one of 18 unique factions.
- Guide the wise and fair elves - Lindon, Rivendell, Mirkwood, Eregion, and Lothlórien.
- Fall under the sway of the Shadow with Angmar, Mordor, Isengard, Dol Guldur, or Minas Morgûl.
- Place your hope in the Men of the West with Arnor, Gondor, and fabled Númenor of old.
- Ride with the Native Men of Rohan, Rhovanion, Harad, Umbar, or Rhûn.
- Battle on new random maps based on real Middle-earth locations.
- Research countless new technologies and decide the path of your race with faction choices. Will you ally with the Rohirrim as Isengard, or fall and become a Vassal of Mordor. The choices are yours.
Forge alliances to supplement your armies with soldiers from other regions, or even call for the aid of Dwarves and Hobbits.
- Enjoy the rich world of Middle-earth as presented by one of the largest graphical modification ever produced for Age of Kings. Over a hundred buildings have been designed, including wonders based on famous Middle-earth landmarks like Orthanc, Barad-dûr, The Golden Hall, or Elrond's Homely House. Likewise, nearly 70 new unit graphics have been added, including almost thirty all new units to appear for the very first time in ToME.
Create that LotR campaign you always had in mind or play online against a friend! Designed to function in multiplayer, singleplayer, and scenario design.
Caras Galadhon - Lothlórien's Wonder.
A patrol of Orc and Trolls through the ash plains of Mordor.
Elrond's Last Homely House in Rivendell.
The mighty King's Men in the fabled Númenor of old.
More screenshots here!
How to Install
Your download comes with an installer to manage everything for you. Don't worry about taking backups, the installer will handle that for you too!
Note: You need to have the C-Patch installed on your Age of Empires II - The Conquerors. Make sure no other mods are installed.
That's it! A shortcut to ToME will be available on your desktop from which to run the game.
This is a beta release, and the first release of ToME. While we have tried to cover all possible aspects of the game, there are some missing features that we are still working on:
- Interface graphics.
- Shadows for some buildings and player colour on some units.
- Heroes from Middle-Earth.
These are low priority issues that don't need to be addressed before a release, and we didn't want you to wait any longer to play ToME!
Keep a check on the ToME Forum and/or Website listed above for updates. Apart from these, the other updates planned are:
- Hobbit-themed graphic pack: adds hobbits, hobbit-holes and Smaug the dragon!
- More eye candy and Gaia objects for scenario design.
- Balance fixes, if any, from all the suggestions and feedback we will receive from you.
FAQ on Troubleshooting
- When I run the ToME shortcut on the desktop, I get the error "Cannot find CD-ROM."
- Please try running AoK as you normally do, using the regular AoK shortcut. That should work just fine!
- It appears broken/corrupted/incoherent (e.g., corrupted unit graphics, mixed up technologies)
- Your install seems to have gone awry. Please ensure you have the C-Patch installed. Your AoC version should be 1.0c.
|Author||Reviews ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )|
Tales of Middle Earth has been a passionately awaited project dealing with Tolkien's fictional universe, a universe that has captured the imagination and hearts of millions of people. This piece of art, brought to us by a team of modders around Matt LiVecchi and Pulkit, has been the most exciting mod I have reviewed so far and I had alot of fun playing around with it during the last few days. Here my impressions in detail:
Tolkien's mythological invention has inspired many games and mods. With few exceptions, most are RPGs and 'merely' allow you to look at that mythical world through the eyes of individual adventurers. ToME is one of few playable simulations of Middle Earthian politics and warfare, allowing the player to build up beautiful Elven cities or construct terrifying Orc armies. In my humble opinion and by no means a sign of flat flattery, ToME is the best attempt of Middle Earthian real time strategy, since even the worldfamous Warcraft game series is too loosely inspired by the original fiction and is more of a comic relief (while still enjoyable, don't get me wrong). As far as I can judge it, ToME is heavily relying on detailled knowledge of Tolkien's world, drawing inspiration from both the books and the movies. This seems evident from the choices made regarding the names and design for civs, units and techs. Unfortunately, I am not qualified to fully grasp and appreciate all of this effort. My experience with the Tolkien universe is restricted to the movies. It heavily speaks for the mod's quality though, that someone just generally interested in mythology and fiction can have so much fun playing it. How much more valuable will this mod be for those who feel at home in Middle Earth!
It is easy to understate how beautiful the design is. Most buildings, units and icons fit nicely with the original game's graphics while being a clear sign of good taste. There are few exceptions, but these are forgivable. It is generally difficult to decide on how to weight shortcommings in the rating, because the authors have promised lots of updates and many imperfections are probably just temporary. I am not going to detract these points from the rating, but the potential downloader be informed that there are a few details in the current version that could kick you out of the illusion you are in Middle Earth. Such are the missing interface graphics (something the authors have definitely promised to fix) and also the peasants' speech sounds. Feel bad about pointing the latter out, because regarding speech sounds there are actually some very positive surprises, like some units speaking Elven and Dwarvian(?)! Yet, this is exactly why I would love this nice design-feature to be expanded to all units. There is no strict obligation for any modder to give in to this new speech-sound trend, but it is certainly helping the illusion you want to sustain with this mod.
But back to the good stuff: Alot of creative ideas, regarding both design and gameplay ensure a high level of immersion with the alternate reality. The mod is rich in detail, with new terrain and nature units, new ways of harvesting and storing ressources and offering intruiguing choices already within a plain random map game (for instance some civilizations can choose whether to join good or evil). I particularly loved Isengard's scouting birds, the concept of banner-carriers and assasins. Such little details provide alot of new dynamics and things to discover making sure that playing this mod will remain fun for a long time.
Overall this mod is highly recommended to anyone generally interested in fiction and Tolkien fans(!) particularly. Since the design and gameplay combine inspirations from both books and movies, everyone touched by this fiction in one way or another will also enjoy playing it. Particularly those who love the movies will be very pleased with some of the units resembling Legolas and Gimmli from Peter Jackson's adaptation. My judgment in one sentence: This is currently our best fantasy mod here at the blacksmith!
[Edited on 12/26/12 @ 07:17 AM]
'Tales of Middle Earth' is a total conversion modpack for AoK:TC, which converts it into the theme of Lord of the Rings series by JRR Tolkien. This mod is extremely detailed and of exceptional quality. Not only is it the best LOTR modpack by far, it is even a great LOTR game in it's own right, rivalling ( in my opinion ), EA: Battles of Middle Earth and such games.
This modpack is not just a superficial jumble of graphical changes. At the heart of it is a brand new tech tree, designed specifically for creating a real time strategy game with the LOTR theme. There are 18 playable races, all new. Each one has their own unique units and technologies and so on but additionally also has alliances or tech choices that allow you to get more types of units or techs. Each one being carefully justified by Middle Earth lore. The changing of barracks/archery ranges etc. to war halls/muster hall is very innovative and allows you to use 'standard troops' available to all civs early on, and then replace them with specialized units as one techs up.
There is also tons of changes made to the sounds in the game. The starting music, theme music and so on: Da Dun dan da da dan! Really gets you into the feel of the LOTR theme. Most units have their sounds changed too and it feels quite realistic. Also, all of the history and description files have been altered to reflect that of Middle Earth.
As for the graphics, they are of extremely good quality, far above what would be expected of an amateur modder. The artist has really shown his imagination while designing things like the Rhun wonder which were never described in the books or shown in the movies.
In addition there are lots of little new gameplay mechanics like assassins, banner carriers, new terrain like volcanic ash, balrogs scouting birds, blah blah it's just awesome ALL OVER!
That doesn't mean it couldn't use some improvements. Apart from obvious bug fixes like missing descriptions, incorrect techs, etc. Some areas in which improvement can be made..
-There are too many elf civilizations. Some of them I've not even heard of. IMO could be replaced by hobbits and dwarves, both of which deserve representation ( may need lot of new buildings/units though )
-Balance. While I don't think very many would want to play competitive multiplayer in this mod but race/unit balance is still important. Dol Guldur is too strong. Isengard is too weak. Mumaks are useless. And that's just off the top of my head.
-AI problems. The aok AI doesn't work well with this mod. I'm hoping to make some progress in this regard.
-Interface graphics. Very important IMO. It is the one major change still missing in this mod.
-Other things being currently worked on, like female characters, dragons, etc.
None of which detracts from the overall quality and awesomeness of the mod pack, it clearly reflects the amount of effort gone into it. As far as the blacksmith rating is concerned, it deserves nothing less than a perfect 5.0! Well done.
Tales of middle earth is very good for scenario designers. If you want to make an LOTR scenario, you definitely want to be using this mod.
TOME comes with a custom installer for hassle free installation. Although it is intended to work with the 1.0c patch only it can actually work with any patch by following some appropriate instructions which I suggest could be added to the mod.
After Age of Chivalry gameplay, this wasn't overinnovating. Some good techs, too much shared units by civs. Enojeyd at 90%.
Good lore work (names, sounds, some voices).
While i didn't like myself the buildings' style(except evil buildings), the quality of the buildings is amazing!
Also didn't like some unit designs but these designs were all HQ (while a bit strange troll animation, still good).
Love the quality and accuracy of the whole mod's art! Amazing work ! Keep it up ! Playing and watching!
I didn't play every civ, neither played long enough to speak about balance. (~4hours played)
Question: why no movie style civ buildings (Gondor, Rohan, movieNoldor styles) ? Lore-accuracy? Personnal taste?