Team 7: Castle Joyous Plains

by: Calvin Patimeteeporn, Breon Guarino, and Aneel Henry

Book 3, Canto 1 Stanzas 20 – 30

From the forest, the PC is thrown into the midst of a small village in the plains surrounding Castle Joyous. Though the path to Castle Joyous is, indeed present, the road is blocked with construction, leaving the player at the hands of the villagers, who are in desperate need of assistance. It would seem as if the Lady of Castle Joyous, has neglected the villagers’ cries for help and has left the town completely isolated. Those townspeople with weak minds and souls have already left the town for the hedonistic castle of Lady Malecasta, leaving a handful of loyal and chaste villagers to deal with the problems. With no one to rely on, the town has fallen to a destitute state, being attacked by both wolves and bandits alike that emerge from the forest at night.
As the player enters the town past a rundown barn and two already abandoned watchtowers, the player witnesses the ruins of a once busy town square. A worried innkeeper is fretting over his dwindling food supplies that are continuously being pilfered by a wolf pack that has taken residence in an area of the forest near the town. Meanwhile, a small group of villagers are holding a meeting at the town well, discussing the bandit situation. While these villagers face these pressing matters, the rest of the village also holds a fair share of menial tasks that the townspeople cannot do alone. A small girl has lost her chickens around the town square and a young boy wishes that he could retrieve his family heirloom from one of the bandits.
While the menial tasks are up to the player to decide, the wolf and bandit situation, however cannot be left alone. Something must be done. Will the player pilfer the innkeeper’s store and blame it on the “undefeatable” wolves or will the player banish the wolves once and for all? Will the player help the bandits destroy and loot the entire village or will the player remain good and repel their advances? Regardless of choice, it would appear that after these events the road opens to Castle Joyous, allowing the player to move forward of his or her journey.
However, the player encounters a struggle between the six knights of the castle and a sole, brave knight, Redcrosse. The player must now defeat four of the six knights in order to gain entry to the next part of the journey, and gain access to the hedonistic castle that is Castle Joyous.

Main Quests:
1. The Road is Blocked (part 1)
•The player encounters road construction that obstructs the player from reaching the castle.
•The player must complete Quest 2 to proceed

2. A. The Wolves that Bite and Bandits That Catch!
•The player must talk to both the Innkeeper and the villagers meeting by the well

B1. The Wolves of the Forest
•In the forthcoming night, the player must confront the wolves that plague the Innkeeper
-Option A: Defeat the wolf pack that comes to raid the Inn’s storage (Chaste).
-Option B: Pilfer all the Inn’s store and lie to the Innkeeper and blame it on the wolves (Unchaste).

B2. Traveling Bandits
•In the forthcoming night, the player must confront the bandits.
-Option A: Kill all bandits that dare set foot in the town, expelling them forever from the village (Chaste).
-Option B: Join the bandits and raid and loot the entire town. Nothing escapes your wrath (Unchaste).

3. The Road is Blocked (part 2)
•After the Quest 2, the road is cleared and the player can move on.

4. Redcrosse and the Knights
•The player encounters Redcrosse and must defeat 4 of the 6 knights that are attacking them.
•The player is allowed entry to Castle Joyous.

Side Quests:
1. The Chickens
•The player talks to a young girl who seems to have lost her chickens.
•The player must collect all three chickens that are running around the village.
-Option A: Give back the chickens to the small girl (Chaste)
-Option B: Demand payment who in the end gives up a rare gem that has been passed down her family for years (Unchaste).

2. Lost Heirloom
•The player talks to a young boy in the square.
•The player must find and locate the heirloom which happens to be in the hands of a lone bandit near the village.
•Player must defeat the bandit.
-Option A: Return the heirloom to the boy (Chaste).
-Option B: Pretend you did not find the heirloom and keep it for yourself (Unchaste).

NPCs:
The Innkeeper: A worried middle-aged man in commoner clothing. Owns and operates the Inn which is plagued by wolves nightly.
The Villagers: A group of emaciated townsfolk with tattered clothing who are concerned about the future of their village with the pressing matter of bandits.
The Small Girl: A young girl with dirty and torn clothing who has lost all of her chickens.
The Small Boy: A young boy with dirty and tattered clothing with no other desire than to reclaim his family’s honor by having their stolen heirloom back in his hands.
Lone Bandit: A lone bandit in bandit attire, furs and ragged clothing. Though weak, he still poses somewhat of a threat. He has stolen the boy’s family heirloom.
Bandits: Gang of bandits dressed in furs and very aggressive. They raid the towns every night or so.
Wolf Pack: A group of 6 or so wolves that raid the Inn’s store nightly.
Redcrosse: A brave knight who refuses to succumb to Lady Malecasta’s knights and needs the player’s help to defeat them.
The Six Knights: Black knights of the Lady of the castle. Aggressive and intent on serving her.

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Kicking Ass and Taking Names: A Hobbits Tale

 

By : Dan Nockels

The comparison between the movie and the video game versions of lord of the rings is in many ways unfair. It is a bit like comparing playing little league baseball to watching the big leagues knock home runs out of the park albeit with significantly more bloodshed on both counts. At my particular point in the game, low level, pigs serve as quite enough of a challenge, hordes of Uruk-Hai might be slightly beyond a hobbit fresh off the create character screen.

 

Although if Merry and Pippin are any indication I should be able to kill them if I can find out how to pick up a stone and throw it. Which brings me to an important difference between the movie and the game, balance and transparency. Being a protagonist is not the equivalent of god mode, your character is in balance with the tasks you are meant to complete. This makes the game more difficult and consistent than it seemed in the movie, as well as fun for more than a short while. For example there is no super duper crit that would allow me to kill Sauron in by chopping off his fingers, nor is there any chance of me taking three giant black death arrows to the chest and still fighting ala Boromir. Your health, energy and damage are transparent and knowable. Unlike in real life and the movie I can see how many arrows I can take to the face before I die (or retreat, in this pansy case). Unfortunately that means I can’t pull an Aragorn and maim and slaughter my way through whole armies without breaking a sweat (yet!).

 

 Another dissimilarity is the first person perspective to the game I see events happening in the world of Tolken through the eyes of my hobbit or at least the disembodied eye that follows him around.  In the movie the audience bounced around following Bilbo, Gandalf or Frodo sometimes independently and sometimes together. In the game we can meet these characters, but we will still only see through the eyes of our character.

 

Pacing is another difference I don’t remember Bilbo needing to kill so many dogs and pigs before leaving in The Hobbit. The game takes its time we get to see and struggle though whatever the environment throws at us while in the movie for the sake of time and entertainment value the long trek up a mountain is summed up in about a minute.

 

It is however important to note the differences in the way the story is told aside both media are visual and focus on actions of the main characters impart their tale to the audience. This Visual kinetic feel permeates both the video game and movie making the differences in the details while the wide strokes are very similar. That said my favorite element of the game so far is the opportunity to play as a chicken. Seriously, playing as a fowl was way too cool, they should have included it in the movie.