Table of Contents
1. Frequently Asked Questions
2. The Basics
3. Campaign Guide
A. Good Campaign
B. Evil Campaign
What is Battle for Middle Earth 2?
Battle for Middle Earth 2 is a Real-Time Stragety (RTS) game made by Electronic Arts. It is set in the world of The Lord of the Rings, specifically during the War in the North, which was mentioned in the books, but not in the movies. The game offers a single-player campaign mode with both a “good” and an “evil” story line to follow. You play the role of your army’s commander, waging war on your enemies using everything from standard infantry, cavalry, and archers to heroes (all of the major characters from the movies are in the game), giant demons and greater powers. You can choose from 6 factions, each of which has unique units and powers, as well as different strengths and weaknesses.
1. Frequently Asked Questions
I’ve never played a real time strategy game before. Is it difficult to learn and play?
Although playing previous RTSs will give you a head start, there is a full-blown tutorial that teaches you everything you need to know to start playing. As you play, you will learn new tactics and tricks, and you will get better with every game played. Don’t let the RTS elitists scare you into not trying it. It’s not that complicated. This game deserves a rent at the very least.
Note: The manual for BFME2 is somewhat…OK, very…lacking, so if you think you’ll really get into the game, you might consider purcahsing the Prima Official Strategy Guide. It fills in a lot of holes in the manual.
Is there a demo I can try before I buy or rent?
As of July 13th, 2006, there is an Xbox Live Marketplace demo available.
I preordered but I didn’t get the promo code for the maps! What do I do?
Please see this thread, which is dedicated to this issue.
I just started playing this game, but there are so many different options, what should I do?
The first thing you should do is play both tutorials. At the main menu, hit left on the D-pad to access them. If you are still unsure of what to do, start either the good or the evil campaign (preferably the one with your favorite army); the first few missions will walk you through many of the concepts and controls.
Which faction is the best?
No army is the “best”. They all have strengths and weaknesses. Some armies are arguably easier to play than others, but it’s really all about personal preference. Just find an army you like and stick to it. You will find good qualities and strategies with them if you keep trying.
What are command points?
Command points represent the number of units you can build in your army. It appears as X/Y, with X being how many command points you’re currently using, and the Y being the total amount you are allowed to use. A standard unit consumes 60 command points, and building farms/Mallorn trees/slaughter houses will increase your available command points.
What are resources?
Resources are the “money” used to buy units and buildings. You can generate resources with farms/Mallorn trees/slaughter houses.
There are so many units; I don’t know what each one does!
Although your army probably has 6 or 7 main units, there are only 4 categories. Each unit category has another unit category they’re strong against, as well as a category they’re weak against. Unlike other games where strengths and weaknesses are mostly useless, these ones are crucial to being a good strategist online, and ultimately to winning:
Warriors – Your standard infantry that carry swords and shields.
Strong vs. Pikemen
Weak vs. Archers
Archers – Carry bows (or axes) and shoot from long range.
Strong vs. Warriors
Weak vs. Cavalry
Pikemen – Carry spears and have longer melee combat range than Warriors.
Strong vs. Cavalry
Weak vs. Warriors & Archers
Cavalry – Riders (horses, spiders, wargs) with quick movement and a trample/overrun attack.
Strong vs. Archers & Warriors (when used to trample/overrun)
Weak vs. Pikemen
You don’t really have to remember this, but instead, understand it.
For example, Warriors have swords and must move in to melee range, so Archers are going to have an advantage because they can cut the Warriors down before they get close. Once the Warriors have closed the gap, though, they will have the advantage, so it’s best to put your archers behind your Warriors and Pikemen, so they can shoot the enemy from a distance.
Cavalry are fast and armoured, so Archers have a hard time hitting them, and are also vulnerable due to having to stop and shoot. When given space to run at the enemy, cavalry will trample and scatter standing units of Warriors and Archers.
Pikemen have long spears that can reach riders on top of their mounts, so they are not as vulnerable to the cavalry’s charge attack.
What exactly does the D-Pad do?
Left on D-pad: Scrolls through your bookmarks, starting with the default “whole army” bookmark.
Up on D-Pad: Scrolls through heroes
Right on D-Pad: Scrolls through powers
Down on D-Pad: Scrolls through builders
My powers come back so slow, is there anything I can do about it?
Yes. If the map you’re playing has a signal tower, you can capture it and regain powers back quicker.
What is Waypointing?
Waypointing is when you have a selected unit (or group of units) travel along a certain path on the way to their objective. This is useful if you want to remain unseen and do a sneak attack, or if you just want to avoid the big battle going on in the middle of the map.
To “waypoint”, select the unit(s) you want waypointed, hold the left bumper, and select (by pressing A) the first checkpoint you want them to travel to. Then select the next checkpoint, and so on until you reach your objective.
What is a Rally Point?
A Rally Point a place you select where new units from a barracks (or any garrisonable building, such as a defensive tower) go when they exit the building. This helps when you have new units on queue and you want them to join the battle right away, instead of just clustering around the building.
To set a Rally Point, select the barracks/building, move the cursor to the place you want the units to go, and press A. You should see a flag, and “rally point selected” at the top.
What is flanking?
Flanking is when you attack someone from the side or the back, and you gain a significant damage bonus. This is an important strategy in both 1 on 1s and 2 on 2s.
What is “micro-ing”?
Microing is when you are in a big battle and you choose to control exactly what a battalion is doing instead of letting the AI do it on its own. Basically you control exactly how they get to a destination or who they attack, instead of just clicking and putting them in that general direction.
The shadows look terrible; is something wrong with my Xbox?
No, it is a minor flaw in the game.
I beat the campaign and none of my heroes died, but I still didn’t get the “No hero deaths” achievement.
Most people do not know this, but some special units like Eagles and Treebeard do count as heroes. The best way to make sure you’re on track for the achievement is to check the statistics at the end of each level, scroll down to the bottom, and look at Heroes Lost. If it’s anything but 0, redo the level. Any unit bought from the fortress other than a builder counts as a hero (Vigilant Ents do not count, as they are upgrades to the fortress, not purchaesd from the fortress).
Do summoned creatures I got using powers count as heroes?
Summoned creatures such as Tom Bombadil do not count as heroes for the purpose of the achievement.
Which units are heroes?
Here is a list of all heroes in the single player campaign:
Mouth of Sauron
*Summoned from Fortress
**Only the ones that are summoned from the fortress count as heroes
How do I know if a unit is a hero?
Hit up on the D-pad and scroll through. If that unit is in there, it is a hero.
Should I save the power points I earned for later levels?
No, Power points carry over from mission to mission, so you don’t start from 0 again. You have to have tier one powers and the power points required before you can grab next tier powers.
On Evil Campaign Level 2, I can’t get my guys on the ground to capture the flags for the bonus objective!
The bonus objective flag isn’t the flag in the Elven base. It’s the flag in the southeast portion of the map on the island with your harbours. There will be a spotlight highlighting it.
On Evil Campaign Level 4, the bonus objective is use untamed allegiance on the spider lairs. What do I do?
Untamed allegiance is a power. Go to your power menu and you should find it on the second tier of powers (10 points).
When I go to Xbox Live, it just says “Connecting to EA Servers”, but never connects. What’s wrong?*
There is an issue at the moment that some people are having. The game never lets them connect. This is a known issue and a fix is on its way, and there is a temporary solution:
- Sign in and start the game
- Select Xbox Live
- This is where you will sit “Connecting To EA Servers”, at this point, press the Guide button on the controller and sign out, but don’t go back to the dashboard
- Once signed out, sign back in again.
- Go back to the game, it will say “the active gamer profile has been signed out”, press A to continue.
- Select Xbox Live
- You should be connected.
I’m not really into single player, but I keep getting my butt kicked online. How can I get better?
Play Skirmish with easy or medium difficulty AI. Get to learn the upgrades and units available in your army. Once you have won a couple, head back online and I’m sure you’ll notice a major difference. Playing with a friend in an “open hand” match is also a great way to learn your units. Take turns attacking different things to see the damage made by each unit.
I just joined a multiplayer match, but I don’t know what they different logos are. Help!
Here is a list, in order from the first going right:
Random – A white circle on a black background
Men of the West – Blue logo with white tree
Elves – Green logo with diamond like shape
Dwarves – Yellow logo with triangle and star
Isengard – Grey background with white hand
Mordor – Red logo with eye
Goblins – Beige logo with dragon head
Whenever I join quick match, the game starts right away before I can choose my Faction. Is this normal?
Yes. In quick match, the game is just that, quick. In order to choose your faction, go to Xbox Live Settings under options and choose your favourite faction or the faction you intend to use in quick match. Then when the game starts, you’ll already be on that faction.
Can I join friends in ranked matches?
No, but people have found ways around it. Just note that some people do find their friends and that they probably have already played together before.
Can achievements be earned in unranked games?
Yes. However, the Hobbit and the Troll and the Try a Tutorial achievements must be earned in ranked play.
Can I play with a Friend vs. the CPU online?
No. CPU is only available in Skirmish.
When people quit, do you still get the win?
Yes and no. Some people seem to get the win, others do not. The problem has been recognized by EA and they are working on a fix.
I’m playing the One Ring mode with a friend, and neither of us can find Gollum. We’ve searched the whole map, but he’s nowhere to be found! What’s wrong?
Gollum isn’t easy to find. Most people usually find him on accident when just fighting the enemy. He is invisible and will only move if in danger or you bump into him (revealing him). If you really just want to see him though, build an ivory tower with the Men of the West and use the power to reveal the map. You should hear a soldier say “There’s Gollum”. When he does, hit the Y button to zoom in on him. Then send a battalion of soldiers to kill him.
How do I gain power points?
By destroying enemy units and structures.
Any obvious things I may not have noticed?
There are a few things you may not have noticed:
- You can select your favourite faction under Options > Xbox Live Options > Favourite Faction. That way every time you enter a game, you’re already on your favourite faction.
- If you click the left analog stick in, it takes you back to your fortress, and if you click the right analog stick, it points the camera north.
- You can upgrade towers with fire or silverthorne arrows even if there is no battalion inside.