Tol Sirion and Minas Tirith

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
I don't think guarding the drawbridge while it's raising would be a reason to have fortifications. Minas Tirith has a tower, so the Elves there are watching for the enemy and would raise the drawbridges before the army arrives. A drawbridge does not need to be fully raised to prevent enemies from crossing it. Moreover, staying on the wrong side of a drawbridge to guard it while it raises would be pretty much suicidal. It would make much more sense to retreat to the main fortress before the bridge raises.
And we wouldn’t have a need for a situation like in Game of Thrones where all the soldiers are placed outside their castle, in front of their trench.
 
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Kathrin

Well-Known Member
my thoughts for minas tirith guarding tol sirion...
half fortress half settlement, not primarily underground, not extremely high. built upon some natural boulders before rapids into the river. mostly uses the river for defense, and maybe also uses the river for mills, washing, fishing & the like, that's why it flows through the city.


IMG_0056_compress81~3.jpg
 

Octoburn

Active Member
So, while relistening to the last session, I had a thought.

I know the book says there's one bridge. BUT, thinking ahead a couple of years, to Beren and Luthien, we may need some sort of explanation.

Beren and Finrod travel from Nargothrond to MT. due to the way the map is, we would almost have to assume they approach from the Western shore. Following Narog to Ered Wethrin and following it to MT.

But, if we are going the route we have decided, with sheer cliffs being the Western shore opposite of MT, how are they taken to MT? We could say they cross at the Brithiach and approach from that direction. Is it ever clearly stated in detail what happened there?
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
So, while relistening to the last session, I had a thought.

I know the book says there's one bridge. BUT, thinking ahead a couple of years, to Beren and Luthien, we may need some sort of explanation.

Beren and Finrod travel from Nargothrond to MT. due to the way the map is, we would almost have to assume they approach from the Western shore. Following Narog to Ered Wethrin and following it to MT.

But, if we are going the route we have decided, with sheer cliffs being the Western shore opposite of MT, how are they taken to MT? We could say they cross at the Brithiach and approach from that direction. Is it ever clearly stated in detail what happened there?
They must have gone past Tol-en-Gaurhoth since all servants of Morgoth are supposed to stop there and what gives them away is that they attempt to go past the tower without stopping.
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
So, while relistening to the last session, I had a thought.

I know the book says there's one bridge. BUT, thinking ahead a couple of years, to Beren and Luthien, we may need some sort of explanation.

Beren and Finrod travel from Nargothrond to MT. due to the way the map is, we would almost have to assume they approach from the Western shore. Following Narog to Ered Wethrin and following it to MT.

But, if we are going the route we have decided, with sheer cliffs being the Western shore opposite of MT, how are they taken to MT? We could say they cross at the Brithiach and approach from that direction. Is it ever clearly stated in detail what happened there?
The Silmarillion says that they journey up the river Narog to Ivrin and then slay the band of Orcs beneath Ered Wethrin. The next thing they do is make for the Pass of Sirion. The book does not say whether they approached it from the east or the west.

"The Lay of Leithian" says that after slaying the Orcs, they went "Northward" and met other bands of Orcs. This does not answer which side they approached Tol Sirion from. However, the description of the island mentions "Taur-na-Fuin, Deadly Night, / the trackless forest's pine-clad height, / falls dark forbidding slowly down / upon the east," and, when Beren and Felagund are captured, "From Thu their coming was not hid / and though beneath the eaves they slid / of the forest's gloomy-hanging boughs ..." There may be forests on the western side of Tol Sirion, but I think this might suggest they were trying to sneak through the eaves of Taur-na-Fuin on the east.

I also think it would be most logical for them to approach Tol Sirion from the east. At that time, Hithlum is still held by Fingon and the House of Hador, so they would be in danger of being attacked by Men or Elves if they went that way while disguised as Orcs.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
The Silmarillion says that they journey up the river Narog to Ivrin and then slay the band of Orcs beneath Ered Wethrin. The next thing they do is make for the Pass of Sirion. The book does not say whether they approached it from the east or the west.

"The Lay of Leithian" says that after slaying the Orcs, they went "Northward" and met other bands of Orcs. This does not answer which side they approached Tol Sirion from. However, the description of the island mentions "Taur-na-Fuin, Deadly Night, / the trackless forest's pine-clad height, / falls dark forbidding slowly down / upon the east," and, when Beren and Felagund are captured, "From Thu their coming was not hid / and though beneath the eaves they slid / of the forest's gloomy-hanging boughs ..." There may be forests on the western side of Tol Sirion, but I think this might suggest they were trying to sneak through the eaves of Taur-na-Fuin on the east.

I also think it would be most logical for them to approach Tol Sirion from the east. At that time, Hithlum is still held by Fingon and the House of Hador, so they would be in danger of being attacked by Men or Elves if they went that way while disguised as Orcs.
But Nargothrond is on the western side of the river and there’s no dedicated bridge until Turin comes to Nargothrond. They’d have to cross at some other point, where would that be?
 

Octoburn

Active Member
But Nargothrond is on the western side of the river and there’s no dedicated bridge until Turin comes to Nargothrond. They’d have to cross at some other point, where would that be?
The Ford of Brithiach

This is also where Aredhel dismisses her escorts when she leaves Gondolin, since she intends to tuen East instead of West. Though, if the road West does not lead to Minas Tirith or Barad Eithel, why would she have gone that way? Most published maps show a road from Nargothrond to Minas Tirith, on the Western side of Sirion. I'd say this road through Brethil was probably made by Finrod's people, as a path between the two. I mean, most people probably wouldn't even notice, it's just something that struck me as I thought ahead.
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Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
But Nargothrond is on the western side of the river and there’s no dedicated bridge until Turin comes to Nargothrond. They’d have to cross at some other point, where would that be?
I believe that is why they go all the way up to the Pools of Ivrin. There is no need to cross the river if they curve north around its source.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
I believe that is why they go all the way up to the Pools of Ivrin. There is no need to cross the river if they curve north around its source.
Wouldn’t that give the game away since they’re supposed to be stopping at Tol Sirion?
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
I think there may be some confusion. There are two (main) rivers that Beren and Finrod have to get around: Narog and Sirion. Narog is the river upon which Nargothrond is located. The source of Narog is the Pools of Ivrin. Sirion, which is east of Narog, is the river with Tol Sirion.

Here is a map with a potential route for Beren and Finrod is blue. The actual route would depend on where the best places to cross those other rivers and streams were, and they may even curve south all the way to the crossings of Teiglin, but I think this gives the idea.
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Octoburn

Active Member
I believe that is why they go all the way up to the Pools of Ivrin. There is no need to cross the river if they curve north around its source.
I'm sure that Narog is fordable at some places. It's nothing like Sirion. I mean, when Finrod's people capture Beren, are they taking him all the way around to the pools of Ivrin to take him to Nargothrond? Plus, I'm sure those who guarded the Guarded Plain frequently reported back to Nargothrond.

I think the issue is Sirion, not Narog.

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The question is: red path or blue path? The blue path is what makes sense, because that's the open side, geographically. The Red is kind of canon, but goes against what we have geographically. If we have sheer cliffs on the West of MT, then approaching it from the West makes no sense, as the purpose of the cliffs is they are impassable. Finrod would know this (he built MT).

I know I started a conversation based on 2 years of projections again, but I think it's important to sort these kinds of things out so they make sense when we get there.

What if, when he takes over, Sauron has a bridge on the Western bank?

EDIT: Rhiannon, your map is basically a compromise between the two routes I suggested, and I thought of it before I posted, but after I made my image. Where on that route are they captured by orcs?
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
I'm sure that Narog is fordable at some places. It's nothing like Sirion. I mean, when Finrod's people capture Beren, are they taking him all the way around to the pools of Ivrin to take him to Nargothrond? Plus, I'm sure those who guarded the Guarded Plain frequently reported back to Nargothrond.

I think the issue is Sirion, not Narog.

View attachment 2526

The question is: red path or blue path? The blue path is what makes sense, because that's the open side, geographically. The Red is kind of canon, but goes against what we have geographically. If we have sheer cliffs on the West of MT, then approaching it from the West makes no sense, as the purpose of the cliffs is they are impassable. Finrod would know this (he built MT).

I know I started a conversation based on 2 years of projections again, but I think it's important to sort these kinds of things out so they make sense when we get there.

What if, when he takes over, Sauron has a bridge on the Western bank?

EDIT: Rhiannon, your map is basically a compromise between the two routes I suggested, and I thought of it before I posted, but after I made my image. Where on that route are they captured by orcs?
I expect they would go a little past Tol Sirion and then be captured, which I did not really show on my map. How far they get past the island I think depends on how we want to tell the story of their capture. We could have other Orcs grab them as soon as they walk past the bridge without turning to the island or anywhere further north in the pass.
 

Octoburn

Active Member
I'm working on a 3D model of Mina's Tirith. I used to do modelling for a game called the Last Days of Middle Earth for an indie game called Mount & Blade, and will probably use that game to showcase it and make a video showing it off a bit. I currently have the island itself and bridge modelled, and a bit of it textured. The island is mostly based on the craggy Rocky island I posted in my first post here.

I want to do this more, but other settlements like Gondolin and Nargothrond would take significantly longer to model and get ready. I'm hoping to have this one done by the time the 2/11 session comes along.

This is a worthless post though, because I have no screenshots of it to show off yet, so there's that. :D
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
I'm working on a 3D model of Mina's Tirith. I used to do modelling for a game called the Last Days of Middle Earth for an indie game called Mount & Blade, and will probably use that game to showcase it and make a video showing it off a bit. I currently have the island itself and bridge modelled, and a bit of it textured. The island is mostly based on the craggy Rocky island I posted in my first post here.

I want to do this more, but other settlements like Gondolin and Nargothrond would take significantly longer to model and get ready. I'm hoping to have this one done by the time the 2/11 session comes along.

This is a worthless post though, because I have no screenshots of it to show off yet, so there's that. :D
I'm I've heard a lot of good things about Mount & Blade.
 

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
I think we have to consider whether or not we want the Pools of Ivrin to feature in the Finrod and Beren quest for the Silmaril story. Basically, the Pools of Ivrin are synonymous with 'Ulmo's influence' - do we want or need that at this point in the story? It's going to be important in Túrin's story, certainly, but is it important here? What point would we be making with it?

I am not sure that they are thematically necessary at this time, which might make the blue path on Octoburn's map a reasonable option for them to take. Certainly, it's more direct. We would have them encounter orcs around the crossings of Teiglin, probably, or at least before they reach the Ford of Brithiach, and then portray them trying to skirt the forests on the western shore to get past Minas Tirith, but be caught doing so.

In short, though, if we determine a bridge to the western shore is needed, we can have Sauron build one. We have not yet planned the capture of Minas Tirith by Sauron, so we don't know exactly what will happen to Tol Sirion when that fortress changes hands. We know Orodreth survives, but beyond that....
 

Octoburn

Active Member
I'm I've heard a lot of good things about Mount & Blade.
I really enjoyed it when it first came out. It's a fun sandbox game for medieval warfare fans. It's basically been stagnant since 2010 when Warband came out. They announced a sequel, Bannerlord, in 2012, but it's release was delayed until March of this year.

Working on TLD, though, dampened the fun with the game itself for me, unfortunately.
 

Octoburn

Active Member
Soo, here's the current progress. Still need to texture the island that isn't "craggy rock" and the rest of the bridge.

2534253525362537

THEN, I get to try to fit the fort/tower on there.

Then, I get it in the game, and hopefully make a video for presentation.

I will probably lop off the four standing "towers" at the front and back of the bridge. They were going to be for the drawbridge, but I decided I wanted both drawbridges to raise to the Gatehouse.

Should the island be bigger? seems like it should be, with that much craggy rock around it...

Any ideas for the fortress/tower? layout and/or architecture? I want to do at least one level of walls and either perch the tower on top of the big craggy rock in the middle, or between the big craggy rock and the rock "shield" across the front of the island.
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
Soo, here's the current progress. Still need to texture the island that isn't "craggy rock" and the rest of the bridge.

View attachment 2534View attachment 2535View attachment 2536View attachment 2537

THEN, I get to try to fit the fort/tower on there.

Then, I get it in the game, and hopefully make a video for presentation.

I will probably lop off the four standing "towers" at the front and back of the bridge. They were going to be for the drawbridge, but I decided I wanted both drawbridges to raise to the Gatehouse.

Should the island be bigger? seems like it should be, with that much craggy rock around it...

Any ideas for the fortress/tower? layout and/or architecture? I want to do at least one level of walls and either perch the tower on top of the big craggy rock in the middle, or between the big craggy rock and the rock "shield" across the front of the island.
It looks great so far! The biggest problem I have is with the layout of the drawbridge. If both bridges are raised from the gatehouse, then whoever operates them is going to be stuck at the gatehouse. I think one bridge should be raised from the gatehouse and one from the island, kind of like this:
2540
 

Octoburn

Active Member
It looks great so far! The biggest problem I have is with the layout of the drawbridge. If both bridges are raised from the gatehouse, then whoever operates them is going to be stuck at the gatehouse. I think one bridge should be raised from the gatehouse and one from the island, kind of like this:
View attachment 2540
I actually thought of that and then thought to myself " if they raise the one that goes to land first, they can leave the other one down for themselves." Not thinking "Oh! The second drawbridge is still down!" :oops: Surely the Noldor could come up with the first Remote Control Draw Bridge Opener. ;)

I actually have a kind of cool idea for how to do the second gatehouse, but it will have to wait until I start on the actual fortress.
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
I actually thought of that and then thought to myself " if they raise the one that goes to land first, they can leave the other one down for themselves." Not thinking "Oh! The second drawbridge is still down!" :oops: Surely the Noldor could come up with the first Remote Control Draw Bridge Opener. ;)

I actually have a kind of cool idea for how to do the second gatehouse, but it will have to wait until I start on the actual fortress.
I was imagining it this way at first as well, until I realized that an assaulting army could just lower the bridge from their side. :)
 
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