About who Gildor is: he calls himself 'of the house of Finrod', so I take it he belonged to the entourage of Finrod took with him from Valinor (as Gildor is an High Elf). Possibly he is even kin to Finrod himself, but that is speculation from my part.
I also wondered why the Ringwraiths were so incapable of actually sensing were the ring was. I think Beren provided a good answer in that they themselves may be hunted upon by Rangers and Elves (what was Gildor's party doing there anyway?) in a land strange to them.
Some more comments:
I marvel at how deep and realistic Tolkien depicts the characters. He let's them struggle with emotions that may not always seem rational (and emotions often aren't), but surely natural. Frodo always wanted to travel, but when he needs to, he hestitates to leaves the place he lives in. A lesser author would've let his main character dive in the action, but not so Tolkien.
In the last chapter Frodo scared Sam by telling him Gandalf would turn him into a toad. At the beginning of this chapter however, Gandalf promises to actually DO that if Sam can't keep his mouth shut. Question is: does he really have the power to do so? It seems a bit out of the way, considering the rest of the 'magical' elements in Middle Earth.
About Sam's 'farewell' to the beer barrel: I have the feeling Tolkien doesn't try to add funny elements, but rather that he describes the characters so well that they automatically act like they should. It makes the funny elements genuine funny to me.
The thinking fox is actually of huge philosophical weight! If we had that knowledge in our present day, thinking would've a whole different meaning! Animals capable of rational thought? I won't bore you guys with too much dull information, but for one it would make the difference between animals and humans not essential (meaning there is a huge gap that can't be crossed between them) but gradual (which means there are differences between animals and humans but we would stay in the same 'line' --> our essence is the same).
I really liked the poem about the road. And the TLA group does too, why else would you guys have placed it on the welcome page
! It's great to think that the road in front of my door leads to so many different and far-away places.
Do you try to sing the songs out loud? I do and that makes me like them even more, even though I am not always able to find the right melody
Minor point: could the second encounter with a Black Rider, actually have been an encounter with the Witch-King himself, as Frodo can't resist the temptation to put on the Ring, contrary to the first encounter. It's fortunate the Elves showed up.
The inspirating desription of the star-lit heaven, reminds me again how fundamentel the sky is in Tolkien's work. It makes me think: will the TLA group be able to implent this properly in the game? I believe you are already planning on night and day themes, but to let the stars and the moon and the sun return? Very difficult I think, if you use that isometric view I saw in the screenshot os 0ad.
Finally: the Hobbits really are honoured that the High Elves take them with them AND serve them with diner. I know the Ringwraiths are pursuing the poor little folks and the Elves wouldn't want them to get hurt, but still that doesn't automatically mean they would serve them.