Welcome to The Last Alliance
Posted 18 September 2003 - 09:45 PM
What Is The Last Alliance?
In short, TLA is a real-time strategy game that takes place in J.R.R. Tolkien's Arda during the first three Ages of the Sun.
However, to best answer that question, it's important to know what TLA is not.
TLA is not a commercial game. We are a freeware, fan-based project inspired by pure love for the project. We will make absolutely no profit from this project; TLA offers us innumerable intellectual and emotional profits by itself.
TLA is not a movie-based game. In fact, we feel that the movies, while they are entertaining, have done a lot in the way of making the true Tolkien experience rather bland. Many 'new' fans of Tolkien are only fans because of the movie and these fans lose out on what the more classical fans have: mental images of Arda before the movie. So one of TLA's goals is to shake up the mainstream a bit and introduce new, original thinking when it comes to Tolkien's work.
TLA is not a Lord of the Rings game. Seems counterfactual, true, but in fact TLA encompasses all Three ages of the Sun. The timespan that TLA covers is an astounding 7045 years; by comparison, the events in LotR happen within a single year. So if you know Tolkien's work only from LotR or the Hobbit, prepare to have your mind opened and served to you on a shining, mithril plate ;-)
TLA is not officially endorsed by any 'official' organizations, namely the Estate of J.R.R Tolkien, Tolkien Enterprises, The Saul Zaentz Company, or Vivendi Universal.
Now for what TLA is:
TLA is a celebration of the life and works of J.R.R. Tolkien, and the efforts of his son, Christopher and it is to these two to whom this game is dedicated.
TLA is a purist's paradise. We study every aspect of Arda in depth, from language, tengwar modes, and the Lhammas, to historically styled dissertations on the Wars of Beleriand. We do our absolute best to ensure that we accurately portray Arda with our project.
TLA is held together by pure fellowship. The WFG team is made of talented men and women from over fourteen different countries, with ages ranging from 14 to 63 years. We're held together blindly by our respective goals and our passion for making games.
A History of The Last Alliance
In the beginning, there was a modding team. This modding team called itself Wildfire Studios and was founded in January 2001. By May of that year, Wildfire Studios had distinguished itself above other modding teams for its legendary Age of Kings modpack, Rome at War, which is still considered among the best modpacks ever made. In fact, Rome at War was even featured in and distributed with computer magazines.
Then in late 2001, Wildfire Studios began its next project, which was codenamed, "0 A.D." This project was going to be a total-conversion modification for Age of Kings, which set the game in the era from 500 B.C. to 500 A.D.. It was during this time, a time when public interest in Tolkien's work was on the uprise from the hype for the first movie, that some members of Wildfire Studios began to conceptualize The Last Alliance. Josef_Bugman, a veteran modder took it upon himself to create The Last Alliance as another one of Wildfire Studios' modpacks.
So Josef_Bugman sought out help from all around the Internet, enlisting many people, and eventually catching the attention of Adam (av_nefardec), who still stays around these days on the project. In the early days of TLA, Josef_Bugman wanted no less than to recreate the New Line Cinema LotR film within Age of Kings. Then, in the first quarter of 2002, Wildfire Studios changed its name to Wildfire Games, to avoid complications with an already existing game development studio.
The first part of 2002 saw little advancement with the project except in the way of building graphics. The reason for this was simple. Both TLA and 0 A.D. were unsure of how they could fit all that they wanted to create into the rather limited scope of an AoK modpack. So in early 2002, TLA became Wildfire Games' first game development project. 0 A.D. soon followed suit, and is now doing very well as an independently developed historical RTS.
The Summer of 2002 was a rough time for the fledgling TLA. Josef_Bugman, whose time for the project was severly restriced by both university and personal reasons was forced to devote less and less of his energy to the project. It was during this time that Josef_Bugman appointed Adam (av_nefardec) as provisional project leader. Adam, by this time enthralled by the very idea of TLA, tried to pick up the pieces of the project and start anew.
Among the first things Adam did to revamp TLA was to induct several members into the TLA team, not the least of whom was Elfthehunter, a senior game designer today on the project. With Elfthehunter and others, Adam set off blindly into the world of game development. We began to write the game's design document, the holy word of TLA, if you will, and we began to generalize the development schedule. Things were going slowly, albeit smoothly.
Then in December of 2002, TLA started the expansion process. TLA went out and recruited no less than twelve new members, among them were conceptual artists, musicians, database programmers, and linguists. Game Design became serious work instead of lax discussion, as the team learned more and more about what game development was all about.
And then in Spring of 2003, a bombshell hit and TLA was paralyzed. Some vistors to the forums pointed out possible legal implications of the development of such a project as TLA. So the first move the team made was to totally generalize itself and bring the project out of Tolkien's world. From this point, the team could more safely chart its course through the murky waters of legality. It was during this time that Adam and Frumpus began to consult various persons associated with the online Tolkien Community and began to take the first footsteps towards a final solution. After more than a month of researched, the ultimatum was reached. TLA walked away from this crisis as a Tolkien purist fan project, and has since never looked back.
After the Spring crisis, TLA became extremely devoted to exploring the works of J.R.R. Tolkien through the various media involved with a computer game. TLA has artists drawing, painting, and modeling renditions of Tolkien's peoples, characters, and places. TLA has musicians exploring Arda through sound and feeling. TLA has research consultants and linguists who painstakingly read through every detail of Tolkien's work to make sure it is accurately portrayed in the game. TLA continues to build in strength and substance everyday with the undying committment and love of its members.
And so for all of us involved with The Last Alliance, the road goes ever on...
-The TLA Staff
Posted 08 December 2003 - 09:54 PM
Posted 09 January 2004 - 12:56 AM
Posted 16 January 2004 - 11:42 PM
Posted 06 August 2004 - 12:42 PM
I'm new in this forum and i wanted to express my pleasure and happiness
for this fantastic game you're planning to make.
I'm a huge Tolkien fan with great respect for the professor and his books.
I'll try to help you as much as i can and we'll be in close contact from now on.
Posted 23 August 2004 - 05:58 PM
It was during this time that Adam and Frumpus began to consult various persons associated with the online Tolkien Community and began to take the first footsteps towards a final solution.
I'm sure this was not the writer's intention, but this sounds bad for historical reasons. I'd omit the word "final" here, or replace it with "permanent".
Otherwise you have a great project going! Keep up the good work.
Aviv Sharon [ aka Jeru ]
Wildfire Games 0 A.D. PR & Social Media Contributor
E-mail & Google Talk: aviv dot sharon at gmail dot com
MSN: lc_jerusalem at hotmail dot com
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn
Posted 07 October 2004 - 08:26 PM
The application on the website is inoperable currently, so if you indeed wish to apply to the project, I would recommend either PMing me or emailing me a message with all of the fields that we ask for in the application as paragraphs or something.
Posted 01 November 2004 - 09:59 AM
Posted 01 November 2004 - 04:13 PM
You're quite welcome here. Feel free to explore the website and forums for information we have released.
If you have any questions, myself or one of the staff will be able to answer it - or perhaps a more experienced forumer.
Posted 07 February 2005 - 10:21 PM
Wildfire Games Resident Theologian
Contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org