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FEEDBACK FOR FFG- 2 cycles in


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#1 richsabre

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 02:58 AM

Hello- given that we are now two complete cycles into this game, I’d like to give my feedback on how its grown, what I like and don’t like, and where I hope it to go in the future.

I remain convinced that FFG do indeed read these boards, but I guess ill mail it anyways, but if you also want to leave your feedback, feel free to do so, as the more the better.

While this is my first (and only) lcg game, I think this may have its benefits in giving feedback, as I can give an insight on what the game can offer new people to the game- obviously an important part of ffg’s company goals.

So here it is.

DESIGN – 8/10

I spent a lot of time looking for a colletable card game that offered solo play before this game came out. And while there were a few that could be modified, I guess none took my eye enough to buy them. Then I saw this game- LOTR LCG….it was perfect. So knowing absolutely nothing about the lcg format I dived in regardless. Now over a year later I have to say I love the concept. The monthly packs are just about right for me, it keeps the game fresh without being too much to keep up with.

I also like the idea of having a large pack to kick off the cycle, though I wasn’t quite so sure about the actual quests of khazad. Myself along with others found going into the mines, fleeing the balrog and so on, quite strange given we go straight back in, and for me it was a little of a premature climax (cough…no pun…honest).

As for the actual game, I really like its design. 4 spheres are about right, offering plenty of combos without being baffling for anyone new, whilst still giving endless space to grow and learn new, more experienced ways of play.

The core set, as many people will say, was a little too hard for most solo play, especially Dol Guldur, though with hindsight I see that this was probably to keep more experienced players trying the quests in the time between core release and HFG, making sure they didnt get bored and wander away.

I would have liked to have had 3 copies of all cards in the core set, but im not sure if that’s FFG policy to do so or not. I like that 3 copies max per deck and am pleased to see that that is what we now get.

THEME/ART/LORE – 10/10

This is the main reason I play the game. I wouldn’t consider myself a gamer per-se, just a Tolkien fanatic. I base a games ‘lore’ success on how much I can immerse myself within it.

Here this game scores top points. The art, as im sure you don’t need me to tell you (congrats on the award) is top notch, and I like the class of the artwork- not too ‘cartoon/manga’ style, but not too digital either. If I had 1 niggle it would be that at core release we had a good mixture of artists, now there seems to be less of a diversity, however the artists being used, such as Magali, are doing an amazing job, so its no big deal for me.

The lore correctness is also spot on, I was pleased to see lesser known characters making their way in so early on (I was particularly impressed to see the Nameless things- not many companies would have tackled that so well) and i hope you contiue to shine the spot light on tolkien's lesser known creations.

I like the little quotes on the bottom of the cards and they really help with setting the scene.

If I had one suggestion it would be to add a little bit of text at the end of the quest cards, just to round the quest off nicely…they seem to end a bit abruptly for me.

QUEST CONTENT 7/10

On the most part, the quests are great fun to play. As said previously the scaling was off on Dol Guldur, however its nice to see the scaling is getting better with each pack. The only exception to this is Return To Mirkwood, where there seems to be nothing that targets a solo player (good or negative) and the threat gain makes this one very difficult solo, and perhaps more important, less fun as its just a ‘luck rush’.

Again in general I am very impressed with the actual mechanics of the quest. The encounter sets offer a nice mixture of questing and fighting, however if I have again 1 problem it is that some quests that balance is a little off. Emyn Muil for instance is far too location heavy, and it gets a little old very quickly- thankfully the amazing art bring it back into play for me, though its just a shame as a few more enemies would have made this one of my favourites.

The difficulty level given on quests is also off for me…perhaps its because im a solo player, though they are rarely correct. The ones that are correct is probably HFG and journey down the Anduin. Though quests such as The Long Dark is much easier than the level given, and quests such as Rhosgobel I find harder than the given level. This isn’t a major thing really, just nit picking I guess.

PLAYER CARD DEVELOPMENT 8/10

Another really positive aspect of the game here. I was slightly worried at the start of the dwarrowdelf cycle with the amount of solo-useless cards, however true to your word, you gave us a lot of great solo cards in the more recent packs.

I am impressed, given all the great cards, that the core set cards are still some of the best. There doesn’t seem to be a huge amount of power creep (though im not really experienced enough to gauge this) and I can still enjoy easier quests, though admittedly ones such as HFG are getting a little of the easy side.

I would love to see something that remedies this. A fellow gamer suggested ‘weather’ effects that could be added into the encounter set to make old quests harder, and I like the idea.


I was particularly impressed recently with the addition of Hands Upon the Bow- a great card finally making RANGED useful to solo play. Id love to see something that does the same for SENTINAL.

FUTURE PROSPECTS

There has been some talk about changing the way that packs are released, and while I obviously cant comment either way before more info is given (and perhaps the rumours are wildly off anyways) id like to just point out that I (along with many others) like the way that packs are being released.

I like the addition of the SAGA packs, offering us some nice ‘side content’ whilst not (hopefully) sidetracking us too much from the game itself.

I like the idea of treasure cards and would like to see them in the game itself somehow.

Overall this game remains as much fun, probably more, than it was when it was released, and Id like to thank you all for doing such a great job

Rich
 


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#2 Mattr0polis

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 03:34 AM

Similar sentiments here.

-Keep with the monthly Adventure Packs.

-Add Treasure cards to the normal game, not just for 3 specific quests.

-The game remains as awesome as it was when it released last year. Thanks FFG!



#3 benhanses

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 04:34 AM

richsabre said:

Hello- given that we are now two complete cycles into this game, I’d like to give my feedback on how its grown, what I like and don’t like, and where I hope it to go in the future.

I remain convinced that FFG do indeed read these boards, but I guess ill mail it anyways, but if you also want to leave your feedback, feel free to do so, as the more the better….

…Overall this game remains as much fun, probably more, than it was when it was released, and Id like to thank you all for doing such a great job

Rich
 

 

 

Dear FFG,

What he ^^^ said.


"... but I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend...."       -Faramir, The Lord of the Rings, Book IV, The Window of the West)

 

"Since it is so likely that children will meet cruel enemies, let them at least have heard of brave knights and heroic courage."     - C.S. Lewis


#4 Bullroarer Took

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 04:41 AM

 The only thing I would add is PLEASE try to balance the spheres better.  Spirit and Lore are way too far ahead of Leadership and Tactics.


Nearly all of my comments are from the perspective of the single handed solo player.

#5 benhanses

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 05:13 AM

 

 

Well covered, Rich!   Although to not just be a mimic, I will add a few thoughts of my own to hopefully compliment your well thought-out review:

 

richsabre said:

 

DESIGN – 8/10

I spent a lot of time looking for a colletable card game that offered solo play before this game came out….

 

 

I haven't played them all, of course, but having played a wide range of TCG/CCG's, THIS was the second biggest reason I picked up this game (the fact that it was Tolkien was first, coop was third). 

I really feel that the Sphere/Race synergies are very well set-up, and once there is more support for the wide range of groups in the game, these synergies will become even better.

 

richsabre said:

 

THEME/ART/LORE – 10/10

…. If I had 1 niggle it would be that at core release we had a good mixture of artists, now there seems to be less of a diversity, however the artists being used, such as Magali, are doing an amazing job…

 

 

 I really appreciated the range of art-work in the core set.  It would be nice to see that again, although there have been some questionable choices on how a few of the cards look lately.  I know, I know… something about having cake and eating it….

Is John Howe available?!? 

 

richsabre said:

 

PLAYER CARD DEVELOPMENT 8/10


…  I was particularly impressed recently with the addition of Hands Upon the Bow- a great card finally making RANGED useful to solo play. Id love to see something that does the same for SENTINAL.

 

 

Which made Brand (and even Legolas, to a lesser extent) actually PLAYABLE in a solo game…  Since he was one of my favorite characters, it's been sad that I have no use for him. Until now. 

Also, I appreciate the themes of each Sphere, but let's face it.  Your focused themes have really left the Tactics sphere to be used primarily in multiplayer games.  There has been some recent cards that definitely look decent in solo decks, but for the most part there is no way folks are going to build a primarily Tactics deck for solo play until there is at least SOME ability to quest…  I'm not asking for it to challange Spirit for questing, but at least something…  It's effectively locked out 1/4 of the player cards from serious solo deck consideration.

richsabre said:

 

 

FUTURE PROSPECTS

There has been some talk about changing the way that packs are released, and while I obviously cant comment either way before more info is given (and perhaps the rumours are wildly off anyways) id like to just point out that I (along with many others) like the way that packs are being released.

 

 

Can't agree more with this!  I enjoy the cycles.  They are theme-oriented, at a reasonable pace, and means that we don't have to spend hundreds of dollars to get every card in a random  pack system (ask me how familiar I am with that!).


"... but I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend...."       -Faramir, The Lord of the Rings, Book IV, The Window of the West)

 

"Since it is so likely that children will meet cruel enemies, let them at least have heard of brave knights and heroic courage."     - C.S. Lewis


#6 Dain Ironfoot

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 05:15 AM

richsabre said:

I also like the idea of having a large pack to kick off the cycle, though I wasn’t quite so sure about the actual quests of khazad. Myself along with others found going into the mines, fleeing the balrog and so on, quite strange given we go straight back in, and for me it was a little of a premature climax (cough…no pun…honest).

 

didn't FFG say KD was like 10-15 years before the Dwarrodelf cycle? I could be totally making up the years, but it was like a prequel or prologue to what we got in the APs. Not that it matters much, and I totally get your point, but they did address this (even if they made it up post hoc!)



#7 Dain Ironfoot

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 05:23 AM

benhanses said:

 

 

richsabre said:

 

PLAYER CARD DEVELOPMENT 8/10


…  I was particularly impressed recently with the addition of Hands Upon the Bow- a great card finally making RANGED useful to solo play. Id love to see something that does the same for SENTINAL.

 

 

Which made Brand (and even Legolas, to a lesser extent) actually PLAYABLE in a solo game…  Since he was one of my favorite characters, it's been sad that I have no use for him. Until now. 

Also, I appreciate the themes of each Sphere, but let's face it.  Your focused themes have really left the Tactics sphere to be used primarily in multiplayer games.  There has been some recent cards that definitely look decent in solo decks, but for the most part there is no way folks are going to build a primarily Tactics deck for solo play until there is at least SOME ability to quest…  I'm not asking for it to challange Spirit for questing, but at least something…  It's effectively locked out 1/4 of the player cards from serious solo deck consideration.

 

 

i'm torn on this -- the sphere's need to remain distinct. one thing i think M:tG does well (certainly in the modern era, not so much in the past) is the 5 colors are distinct and stand for something. to be sure, there is some bleeding, but by and large, you would know what you are getting if you simply knew the color of a card.

for this game, i feel they are letting the colors bleed too much, so to speak. perhaps it's a balance issue (trying to make the spheres have a little of each other sphere, for example). Mirkwood Runner definitely comes to mind when thinking of "color bleed."

so, in some ways, i don't want tactics to get better at questing…that's not it's role. just as i don't want lore to be better at attacking and spirit better at card draw, that's not their role. it starts to make the sphere's pointless (and with songs, they are in many ways; there's no "drawback," or at least it's less than in other games, to mixing the colors).

at the same time, i'm okay with a few cards in each sphere having characteristics of another sphere …. as long as the spheres, overall, retain a distinct flavor/feel.



#8 richsabre

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 05:29 AM

Dain Ironfoot said:

richsabre said:

 

I also like the idea of having a large pack to kick off the cycle, though I wasn’t quite so sure about the actual quests of khazad. Myself along with others found going into the mines, fleeing the balrog and so on, quite strange given we go straight back in, and for me it was a little of a premature climax (cough…no pun…honest).

 

 

 

didn't FFG say KD was like 10-15 years before the Dwarrodelf cycle? I could be totally making up the years, but it was like a prequel or prologue to what we got in the APs. Not that it matters much, and I totally get your point, but they did address this (even if they made it up post hoc!)

oh i see- that news to me!


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#9 richsabre

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 05:30 AM

Dain Ironfoot said:

benhanses said:

 

 

richsabre said:

 

PLAYER CARD DEVELOPMENT 8/10


…  I was particularly impressed recently with the addition of Hands Upon the Bow- a great card finally making RANGED useful to solo play. Id love to see something that does the same for SENTINAL.

 

 

Which made Brand (and even Legolas, to a lesser extent) actually PLAYABLE in a solo game…  Since he was one of my favorite characters, it's been sad that I have no use for him. Until now. 

Also, I appreciate the themes of each Sphere, but let's face it.  Your focused themes have really left the Tactics sphere to be used primarily in multiplayer games.  There has been some recent cards that definitely look decent in solo decks, but for the most part there is no way folks are going to build a primarily Tactics deck for solo play until there is at least SOME ability to quest…  I'm not asking for it to challange Spirit for questing, but at least something…  It's effectively locked out 1/4 of the player cards from serious solo deck consideration.

 

 

i'm torn on this -- the sphere's need to remain distinct. one thing i think M:tG does well (certainly in the modern era, not so much in the past) is the 5 colors are distinct and stand for something. to be sure, there is some bleeding, but by and large, you would know what you are getting if you simply knew the color of a card.

for this game, i feel they are letting the colors bleed too much, so to speak. perhaps it's a balance issue (trying to make the spheres have a little of each other sphere, for example). Mirkwood Runner definitely comes to mind when thinking of "color bleed."

so, in some ways, i don't want tactics to get better at questing…that's not it's role. just as i don't want lore to be better at attacking and spirit better at card draw, that's not their role. it starts to make the sphere's pointless (and with songs, they are in many ways; there's no "drawback," or at least it's less than in other games, to mixing the colors).

at the same time, i'm okay with a few cards in each sphere having characteristics of another sphere …. as long as the spheres, overall, retain a distinct flavor/feel.

yes, i have to say i agree with this- the spheres need to remain distinct……though leadership has seemed to me to be a mix of all spheres from the start (or was that the intention)

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#10 starhawk77

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 07:33 AM

The spheres are fine; some are better for solo play, but Leadership and Tactics (generally weaker with one player) really rock in larger games. I would also like the spheres to remain distinct, but I think there are flavorful ways to shore up some of the weaknesses in each color (e.g., a Tactics character who gets +1 willpower each time he destroys an enemy).

My only real complaint concerns the inconsistent/ambiguous terminology we continue to see on cards. If FFG could clean that up, the game would be darn near perfect in my book. Just don't ever--EVER--change the artwork. Every new AP is a visual feast, and that's a large part of what keeps me coming back.

All in all, I love this game more than I have ever loved any other card game. I'd like to see a few simple fixes implemented, but I'll still play even if card templates continue to vary wildly. For me, the game is that enjoyable. 



#11 booored

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 09:03 AM

Well it might be some time for some constructive criticism

[ADMIN: Edited for content.]


Let me start with saying FFG is doing a great job with this game, it is easily one of the best card games I have played, and I have been playing card games for over 20 years now and have entire shelves of cards form various titles. The co-op angle is just fantastic, and while gives this game life where many of the other games are simply nvr played any more. Still I think this is a good time to offer form thoughts on what is weak in this game.

 

Boooring Monsters

One of my main problems with the LoTRlcg is that there is so little variety.. Would be nice to see some new monsters now and then instead of orc version 40 and troll version 20 … The packs are just so similar.. Some of the real stand out packs for me is like the watcher for example were we had some small respite form the constant encounter cards that are exactly the same as all the other encounter cards we have already seen.

Now I understand there is some need to stay inside the Lore of LOTR but you need to find a balance between the LORE and fun gameplay. Tolkin's work is pretty 2 dimensional so we understand that you haven't got a lot to work with. Still if you look at say the LoTR Game from GamesWorkshop you can see many interesting and fun monsters that fit nicely into the Lore that only the most pathetic phyco fan would have a problem with.

Beravor for example is a made up character, no one cares. So why not make some interesting foes that are not just the same variation on the exact same theme. If this game goes for another year, the packs will be so bland as every single enemy will be exactly the same.

 

Quest Specific Player Card Problems

Another grave problem with this game is a by product of the quest system and in truth I am not sure I can see a way out of this.. but then you are the designers… so work it out.

What I mean here is that to make quests interesting you need to make cards that key off them and interact with them. The problem here is that these cards become completely useless out side of those quests. Your packs cost money and people like to think that their player cards will have a life for the entire length of the game. Examples of this is all those cards that key of "dark" and "underground" these have been great in Darrowdelf, but when you release a pack set in a forest or the plains or w/e then these cards will be of no use.

Through out the entire game there have been forgotten keywords and types. Now yes eventually you can come back to these and release more cards to beef up say Secret, but it is just as likely that we may not see these ever again. This reminds me of how the CoC cycle specific ideas like night and day and others witch were cool ideas are now completely lost and irrelevant to the game.

When we open a player card we want to think that this card will be relevant until powercreep replaces it. What we have with a lot of cards is that we open them and think.. well this card will nvr be used outside of this cycle or that this deck type is completely underdeveloped and not worth building a deck around.

 

Flip a Card, ******* Die!

The greatest problem with this game and the thing that you should really be trying to work out how to remove is the "flip a card, instantly die" problem. This is extremely frustrating for vets and makes new players give up on the game instantly. I can not even count the times that I have been demoing this game (my game store hosts games nights I run LoTr games there now and then) when we have spent more time shuffling our decks then playing the game.

Nothing is worse than trying to teach someone this game saying.. “yeah it is really cool. this is how you play (15 min rule explanation)" and then you loose the quest on turn 2… the reactions is "Well that was anticlimactic and wasn't fun, what other games you got back there?"

Now I understand that as this is a co-op game there is no way you can make the encounter deck intelligent and reactive (or is there, your the designers.. .. . ) so you need powerful encounter cards in there. Still this flip a card game over is really frustrating and also off putting to new players.

As a deck construction game many people play this game for the deck building. I have spoken to many experienced deck builders and much of the consensus is that no matter how well you play or what you deck build there is just no way you can get over this problem. When people deck build they like to make decks that function in a synergistic way and have a good chance to win. The flip a card gameover means that no matter how much time you spend on a deck you can loose the game in an instant and this makes deck builders fell that they are completely wasting there time.

What ends up happening is that people build decks that simply ignore these large threats and then just "hope" they nvr turn up. So you are not really playing the game you are just hoping for a correct flip order from the encounter deck. Some quests like say return to mirkwood for solo players could basically be played by just shuffling and dealing the encounter deck, if you had a good draw.. you win… if not you lose.. as NOTHING you did in game made the slightest difference besides drawing questing characters.
 


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#12 richsabre

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 09:54 AM

booored said:

 

Well it might be some time for some constructive criticism instead of just FFG **** sucking…

 

Boooring Monsters

One of my main problems with the LoTRlcg is that there is so little variety.. Would be nice to see some new monsters now and then instead of orc version 40 and troll version 20 … The packs are just so similar.. Some of the real stand out packs for me is like the watcher for example were we had some small respite form the constant encounter cards that are exactly the same as all the other encounter cards we have already seen.

Now I understand there is some need to stay inside the Lore of LOTR but you need to find a balance between the LORE and fun gameplay. Tolkin's work is pretty 2 dimensional so we understand that you haven't got a lot to work with. Still if you look at say the LoTR Game from GamesWorkshop you can see many interesting and fun monsters that fit nicely into the Lore that only the most pathetic phyco fan would have a problem with.

Beravor for example is a made up character, no one cares. So why not make some interesting foes that are not just the same variation on the exact same theme. If this game goes for another year, the packs will be so bland as every single enemy will be exactly the same.

 

 

while the entire section quoted is nothing but troll bait aimed at me and other lore fans, this is my thread so i feel no problem in side tracking for a moment.

 

what exactly makes you think that tolkiens works is 2 dimensional? perhaps the literally millions of copies sold..? (well maybe, taking the likes of potter and twilight we can see success often = drivel)…..or perhaps it is the fact the he is the man that every (and i do mean every) fantasy author now draws from, more often than not just copying LOTR in a very poor manner..or maybe its the fact it took 12 400 page history books to explain his writings, with countless others over the years?

let me ask you- have you even read the books? and i mean properly read them? not that i have anything against those here who havent, it would just do more for your opinion if you had the knowledge to back it up- knowledge which would tell you that GW products are FILM based, and most of the stuff that wasnt in the film was from the so called '2 dimensional books' anyways

the only content that was released outside of the film and the books is just basically straight lifted from the warhammer products and pasted with tolkien style names

perhaps you think that after decades we should just create a new race to mix things up abit? yeah why not…lets call them spawns of the great demon splurge shall we, and its ok in the lore side as tolkien didnt explain all of middle earth to us….

perhaps you should realise that in tolkiens work there are many many creatures, good and bad, some  inbetween. and if you had looked at GW's LOTR products you would realise that they are infact doing EXACLTLY what you complain FFG is doing- just basic variations on the same thing- mordor orcs, mordor archers, mordor uruks, mordor uruk captain, isengard uruk, isengard orcs….you get my point…and dont tell me it isnt like that because i collected GW LOTR for years until it was exactly what you said- the films had ran dry and they couldnt properly release decent content so it got boring….difference with this game here is that it has designers who actually know tolkien lore

the actual variation you are referring to (mostly evil men and creatures of lands we havnt been anywhere near to) would end up a joke if FFG just slotted them in there- i mean you actually want a Mumak wandering around in the mines of moria? becuase thats what it would have to end up like. FFG are just giving us the foes that you would naturally encounter in the places we have been to-which given that tolkiens main foes are orcs, has ended up orc heavy.

while my recent player type poll had nowhere near enough results to draw any firm conclusions, it can be seen that the Bilbo theme type players came out on top..so while the likes of you can go around saying things such as your post, remember that i am not the only 'pathetic lore nerd' here…and ffg has to (and thankfully does) take that into account

 


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#13 booored

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 09:58 AM

the fact that you think my post has anything to do with you in any way says a lot about you I think.


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#14 richsabre

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 10:01 AM

booored said:

the fact that you think my post has anything to do with you in any way says a lot about you I think.

doesnt really matter, my point remains


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#15 John85

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 10:12 AM

Thanks Rich ^^^^ I thought about saying something but figured you'd do it better, being more well versed in the material. I'd like to add the fact that beyond the stories, the mythology, etc. themselves lies very deeply held beliefs and opinions of Tolkien himself (a Roman Catholic). Read some of the philosophical studies written on Tolkien; Middle-Earth is our earth, with all of its complexities. The mythology is chock-full of detail (the languages, the mythology, the tales, the histories, etc.). To write it off as "two-dimensional" is insulting to Prof. Tolkien, one of the great linguists of the twentieth century, to his legacy, and to his family.

If I may ask booored, what is your idea of "three-dimensional" source material?

I won't disagree with you that some things might be improved upon, in fact I've made similar points about quests on another thread.

 



#16 booored

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 10:12 AM

richsabre said:

what exactly makes you think that tolkiens works is 2 dimensional?

It is 2 dimensional, in fact it is deliberately so. Everything is black and white, there is good and evil, right and wrong, heroic and villainous, and the villains ALWAYS loose as in for all the threats that mordor pose they get there ass kicked in every single major encounter.

His entire novels are based on the theme of the duality of nature, good and evil, with defined and right and wrong and what is worthy of protection and what is not. Bad guys are bad guys, evil twisted monsters that server no function than to be evil twisted monsters. One monster is interchangeable with any other as there only function is to provide a counterpoint to the heroic. Evil is evil for the sake of evil in his stories, there is no depth or exploration into what evil is or what motivates.

So while the realm of men and elves and to some extent dwalfs are well rounded and defined the bad guys are just generic monster "A". Little to no though in them… this translates into the game as there basically being 1 type of monster for the entire game.


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#17 booored

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 10:19 AM

John85 said:

. I'd like to add the fact that beyond the stories, the mythology, etc. themselves lies very deeply held beliefs and opinions of Tolkien himself (a Roman Catholic). Read some of the philosophical studies written on Tolkien; Middle-Earth is our earth, with all of its complexities. The mythology is chock-full of detail (the languages, the mythology, the tales, the histories, etc.). To write it off as "two-dimensional" is insulting to Prof. Tolkien, one of the great linguists of the twentieth century, to his legacy, and to his family

 

exactly, and just like in said religion "demons" or w/e have no motivation other then being demons. Evil is evil for its own sake, there is no depth there.. they are evil.. end of story.  Being evil is in itself a explanation of motive… (witch it is not)

Tolkien was a academic not a story teller. The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings ARE NOT his works (so to speak). It is well documented that he was pressured into writing Lord of the Rings and only wrote the Hobbit as a exercise in narrative as part of his studies.

He was a linguist who specialised in folk lore and had a particular love of the European epic poems. His legacy and work is not these short novels, but the languages and histories going back to the creation of the planet and life itself. If you read his letters and notes it reads like the start of the bible.. just linage lines.
 


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#18 richsabre

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 10:25 AM

reading the Return of the Shadow, the first history book documenting the writing process of the trilogy, several times tolkien claims the characters took off the page, so to speak, and even he was shocked at things such as gandalf not turning up to meet frodo after his capture.

that to me certainly speaks of a man caught up in the narrative….most authors have reasons for writing other than being an author, even the greats started for other motives


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#19 Dain Ironfoot

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 10:25 AM

booored said:

richsabre said:

what exactly makes you think that tolkiens works is 2 dimensional?

 

It is 2 dimensional, in fact it is deliberately so. Everything is black and white, there is good and evil, right and wrong, heroic and villainous, and the villains ALWAYS loose as in for all the threats that mordor pose they get there ass kicked in every single major encounter.

His entire novels are based on the theme of the duality of nature, good and evil, with defined and right and wrong and what is worthy of protection and what is not. Bad guys are bad guys, evil twisted monsters that server no function than to be evil twisted monsters. One monster is interchangeable with any other as there only function is to provide a counterpoint to the heroic. Evil is evil for the sake of evil in his stories, there is no depth or exploration into what evil is or what motivates.

So while the realm of men and elves and to some extent dwalfs are well rounded and defined the bad guys are just generic monster "A". Little to no though in them… this translates into the game as there basically being 1 type of monster for the entire game.

booored said:

richsabre said:

what exactly makes you think that tolkiens works is 2 dimensional?

 

It is 2 dimensional, in fact it is deliberately so. Everything is black and white, there is good and evil, right and wrong, heroic and villainous, and the villains ALWAYS loose as in for all the threats that mordor pose they get there ass kicked in every single major encounter.

His entire novels are based on the theme of the duality of nature, good and evil, with defined and right and wrong and what is worthy of protection and what is not. Bad guys are bad guys, evil twisted monsters that server no function than to be evil twisted monsters. One monster is interchangeable with any other as there only function is to provide a counterpoint to the heroic. Evil is evil for the sake of evil in his stories, there is no depth or exploration into what evil is or what motivates.

So while the realm of men and elves and to some extent dwalfs are well rounded and defined the bad guys are just generic monster "A". Little to no though in them… this translates into the game as there basically being 1 type of monster for the entire game.

what about Saruman? wasn't he good before he was bad? and what about the corrupting influence of the ring? that changed characters, too. what about the other istari? they were all "good" but only gandalf stayed true to the mission. what about the growth of aragorn from reluctant leader to accepting his destiny as king?

both being, there is grey in middle earth. maybe not a lot. certainly not a lot when compared to more modern literature. but, it is not *entirely*  two dimensional, as you claim.



#20 richsabre

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 10:28 AM

being honest i find many (scratch that- all) modern fantasy books tiresome- theyre too multi-dimensional…yes there is such a thing!

i like kicking back in middle earth and its tradiational style tales…..i cant think of many authors that do this anymore

and yes, i guess no one will get a book published anymore without ten thousand 'main' characters….just a shame really

i mean look at RJ's wheel of time- its just so damn complex it isnt enjoyable- by the time you read one book, you have to remember what went on 1000 pages back before going to the next!


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