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VINE VOICEon 2 January 2005
THE STORY:
As the forces of good, you control the Fellowship and their allies from Gondor and Rohan as you fight across Middle-Earth before taking your war to the Black Gate itself. If you choose the forces of evil, lead armies from Isengard and Mordor in hunting down the Fellowship and despoiling the lands of your enemy. Levels includes such iconic settings as Moria, Isengard, Helm's Deep, Minas Tirith and Cirith Ungol.
WHAT'S GOOD:
Not only is the best LotR game I've ever played, but it's also the best strategy game I've ever played. Your army fights in units, doing away with the tiresome process of purchasing your forces one man at a time, but you are also given Heroes to control, who add an entire new depth to the game with their powerful special attacks and the bonuses they grant to nearby troops. All of the main characters of the films (Gandalf, Merry, Pippin, Sam, Frodo, Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli, Boromir, Faramir, Treebeard, Eomer, Eowyn, Theoden, Saruman, Shelob, Lurtz, Gollum and the Witch-King) have been included and each is entirely unique. Also, each of the carefully researched locations (most taken from Tolkien's texts rather than the films) presents different challenges, be it preparing to ambush a convoy of Haradrim or (best of all) desperately trying to prepare Helm's Deep and Minas Tirith for the immanent arrival of the enemy army. Oh, and just wait until you take control of your super special power (the Balrog for evil, the Army of the Dead for good)! Add to all this excellent graphics that even hold up when you zoom right in and a wonderfully streamlined resource-gathering system (none of the AoE '4 wood, 6 gold, 9 stone' rubbish). I would say this is 'one game to rule them all', but I'd have to break my own legs for using such a tired cliche. *SNAP - SNAP - ARRGGGH!*
WHAT'S BAD:
There's really not much to complain about here, but I was a little disappointed about the briefness of the levels in which you just control the Fellowship. I can't help feeling that they could have made an entire game just based on those too few bits. The other really bad thing about this game is the fact that you become so engrossed that you suffer from alien-abduction-style missing time and suddenly realise it's 3AM and you've been playing for six hours straight!
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on 27 October 2015
Really bad.. rip off.. game isn't European, plus it doesn't work at all due to it being fake! Had it checked and currently sellers are being investigated !
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on 11 September 2015
as described and delivered as expected
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on 25 November 2016
brought this for my son he seems very happy with it and keeps him quiet
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on 17 December 2015
Broke after three uses
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VINE VOICEon 11 December 2004
If, like me you brought this game believing various sites claims (including Amazaon's) that the game will run under Windows 98 or ME then you are going to be sorely disappointed and are going to have to waste a lot of time getting your money back.
For those interested the game Specs as listed on the game itself are:-
System : Windows 2000 or XP only
Processor : 1.3GHz
Memory : 256Mb
Hard Drive : 3.5Gb
Only comes on a DVD-Rom and needs a minimum read speed of 8x
Video Card : 32Mb Direct3D (Cards supported: NVidia Geforce 2 GTS or later, NVidia Geforce FX Series or later, NVidia Geforce 6800, ATI Radeon 7500 or greater, ATI Radeon X800).
Sound : DirectX9.0b compatible
Internet: 56.6Kbps for 2 players or Broadband for 2-8 players.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 26 October 2009
This is a form of strategy game using the characters from the Lord of the Rings trilogy of films, though it does not follow the books or the films in progression.

You have the choice of playing for good or evil, of playing a skirmish or the longer campaign mode. There is also a good training package included which you can return to at any time. The game also gives you the ability to play others via the internet - the game online is, however, extremely hard to win.

Once you have picked your side you must then either conquer Mordor or conquer the armies of Men. This is done by selecting an area of Middle Earth to battle over. Once won, it will not fall to the enemy, so is yours until the end of the game.

This game allows you to use heroes (or villains). Each hero (or villain) has certain skills which can be gained as you build their experience up to level 10. Some of the heroes seem to gain experience easier than others.

As you go through the different levels of the game you gather power points. These points can be used to purchase special powers such as "heal", "temporary elves", "temporary Rohirrim", right up to "temporary ghost army", these are very useful for overrunning Isengard and Mordor.

The contours of each level map are revealed as your troops travel across the land.

On the down side (for me) is that you have to build your encampments on a predetermined site, unlike C&C you have an open choice of where to build. However, on the good side, initially you only receive a few buildings - farms, barracks, stables, etc - but as you progress though the game you gain more buildings (this allows you to understand which are the basic buildings and which are the bonus extras which you might want to consider). Once you have played all the way through and won, going back to the start with only a few types of building available makes

Unlike C&C you are limited to the number of troops you can produce on each level. I have found this very annoying at times.

One of the big irritants with the game is the use of the voices of the actors and actresses involved - each recorded only two or three lines which are used every time a hero is selected and there are only so many times that you can hear "men of Rohan", "rally to me", "I will ride with the men", "for our friends" or "protect the hobbits", etc, before it starts to get a bit annoying.

I have played the old Command and Conquer games since they were first released (I personally prefer the strategy type games to the shoot `em up ones), and this is very similar in form to C&C. Like C&C (and the Dungeon Keeper games before them) it is very addictive, and you want to finish each battle before you end. If you are not careful you can find that several hours have passed without you noticing.

LotR:BfME is one of the better strategy games of this type available, it is easy to learn and easy to play, but the game play gets progressively harder meaning that there is always something that needs your attention. It is a game that I have enjoyed playing and runs on my laptop (but please check the specifications for your own as it does take up a lot of memory space). It is something which, when you are ill or away from home, can be played as a distraction from the current events, eg, hospital stays, illness in bed, overnight stays, etc.

The graphics in this PC game are superb, and include clips from the films and CGI produced footage.

This is one of the pc games which I play the most often.

I highly recommend this game for anyone who enjoys strategy and war games.
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on 3 August 2010
It's like they got the icing perfect, but didn't concentrate too much on the cake. 100% for the graphics but the gameplay was terrible. NOT a classic RTS game.
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on 21 August 2005
Epic battles, valiant warriors, evil orcs, beautiful landscapes, amazing effects, mighty heroes, the fellowship, the battle for middle earth has it all. Even the pre-game movie is very interesting and a very good piece of computer animation.
In 'the battle for middle earth' you lead either evil or good armies to victory, following the plot of the LOTR trilogy. When you start a campain, you can choose two ways. Evil, or good. Evil makes you the commander of uruk-hai, warg riders, Lurtz, Saruman, evil pikemen, and many more. If you are lacking in firepower or strength, no problem, just bring in a ballista or a battering ram. If you choose to command the troops of Rohan, Gondor, or the fellowship, you will gain control of many units: Rohan Rohirrim, swordsmen, Legolas, Gimli, Frodo, Sam, Gandalf, Aragorn and others. You will also be able to create other troops such as trebuchets, which can destroy walls, and so on.
But the thing that makes the battle for middle earth so special is that it is definately and truly fun. The problem with some other strategy games is that they have devastatingly hard levels, which make you want to smash the CD, or waaaay too easy levels, which also make you want to smash the CD. I think that this has very challenging, but not annoying, levels. Even though some might be annoying, but this only lasts for a short time.
I think that there are a few problems with the battle for middle earth. The maps are often too small, resulting in a seemingly relentless attack of enemy troops. Very annoying. Also, it will be a lot nicer if you could actually use more strategy, as (like another reviewer) often you just charge around destroying small patches of enemy territory, then building more troops, then once again charging around destroying other troops or towns/outposts. There is also the problem that the Fellowship levels of the 'good' campain seem to be a lot easier than the Eomer levels, mainly because the fellowship are much stronger than any rohirrim, peasants, or archers that you can ever make.
Back to the menu: There is also another button, skirmish. Skirmish is basically a mini-campain, where up to 8 people (1 person and 7 computers) go against each other. Of course, you can choose to have allies, or choose to all be against each other (very messy!). I still feel slightly irritated at the fact that there is no 'peace' option, so that you can build up your horsemen, or archers, or whatever warriors, as you often find yourself trying to build up troops as quickly as you can, and then finding your camp or allies being attacked. Online play is supposed to be pretty good, but I have not tried it, and therefore do not know if it is good or bad.
No game or item is perfect, but some games are better than others, and some games are even better. To me, 'the battle for middle earth' is probably one of the closest to perfect when it comes to film/book strategy games.
End
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on 5 June 2006
I'm a massive LOTR fan and i have to admit the creators have put an excellent effort into this game, i commend them, the soundtrack, the voiceovers(brilliantly provided by the cast of the films)and the graphics as well as recreations of the battles from the movies are all suberbly done and when playing the game you can quite easily get lost in the LOTR world, as Tolkien would have liked, however, i really wanted a LOTR version of Rome in this when you feel you have real control over your empire, how its run and how you fight it's battles,you know- send an army of Oliphunts to Gondor and trample that band of Gondorian scouts, train one more troll before setting the army through the Black Gate etc but with LOTR BFME, i don't feel in control of very much, whilst the campaign map is wonderful to look at and you do have some choice of what you do whether you're good or evil, in campaign mode the story rather plays out in front of you and you just help it along rather than really have any effect upon it. In the battles, i believe the idea is that you use strategy,but i cannot set formations, archers behind uruk-hai in front etc, hold strategic positions or move troops around with any great freedom- its so awkward!and this was a let down, i would buy the game for just being a fan of LOTR because it is very immersive and addictive, yet somehow i feel inclined to trade it in because i enjoy battles on Rome so much more!Advice, buy this if you have not bought Rome yet, don't if you love Rome, and buy Rome if you're after realism and control!Enjoy whatever your choice
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