Welcome! This is the ninth suggestion in the series detailing improvements to various biomes of Middle-earth. In this I shall suggest improvements to the desolate and fair land of Ithilien, now a warzone. The prior suggestions can be found here:
Ithilien is currently a beautiful and accurate biome. However, I can still make a few improvements.
The undergrowth should be increased, and thickets and heather should be dotted about. Herbs and shrubs are dotted about, and there are bushes and creepers of thyme. Sages of blue and red, and pale green, and marjoram and hyacinth and parsleys, saxifrages and stonecrops, primeroles, blue anemones and white celandine, and many mosses and lily-flowers all surround the swift streams that flow down towards Anduin.
Bushes of boxwood and tamarisk, junipers, ilexes, and myrtles, were also found here. These should dot the surround, making travel more difficult and adding more interest to the land.
Of the plants mentioned above, thyme, saxifrages, moss and stonecrop should be made to grow on stone both on the sides and on top, so the grottoes and boulders of the land are starred with green. For those who don't know, Grottoes are hollows of stone with streams and water flowing through them. These should appear abundantly in the biome.
Lilies, both yellow and black, should spawn near water in the biome.
A few new tree species should also be added. Fir trees are mentioned in the woods, as are larches, terebinth, olives, ilex, and dark-leaved bay trees. The amount of deciduous trees should be decreased, as the woods were evergreen.
However, the land has felt the marks of the Enemy. There should be some fallen trees hewn about, and others carved with foul runes or the Evil Eye in their bark.
On occasion, an ambience should sound that sounds like an imitated birdcall. This would be a signal of the Rangers.New Biomes:
I removed the Ithilien Wasteland biome and replaced it with an Ithilien Moorland biome, which also replaces Ithilien Hills.
-Ithilien Moorland is a tumbled hill-land, reminisent of the Northfarthing of the Shire. There are shrubs and clumps of pine-trees dotted around, and heather covers the ground. Crags and ghylls can also be found near the mountains.
-By the Morgul Vale, there is a biome called the Morgul Desolation. It is a version of the Moors, save darker and with fewer trees (some of which are dead). There are cliffs and hollows, and the whole area is covered in high brambles and yellow gorse-bushes. In some places there are the scars of recent fires, marked by barren dirt and charred wood.
-The Cross-roads have a unique biome as well, a small patch of giant trees abidst the Morgul Desolation. These are charred and broken at the tops, but still living.
-The Fields of Cormallen are a small biome next to Cair Andros. The grass is famously bright and flowered, and there are less trees then Ithilien. However, beech can be found, as can the wonderous Culumalda Trees, which spawn only here (and perhaps very rarely in Ithilien). These are tall and dark-leaved trees, laden with scarlet-golden flowers like a laburnum.
-Finally, a biome around the Cross-Roads has been added, called Ithilien Open Woods. This is a open wood of great ilex trees, and oaks and ash. White celandine and blue anemone, and many woodland hyacinth are to be found everywhere.
Currently the biome is swarming with Orcs at night. Seeing as Frodo and Sam saw no orcs while they were in the land, the spawn rate should be drastically lowered to spies roaming the woods, and perhaps a few larger bands upon the roads. Invasions should be drasticallly lowered, especially for evil factions.
When Rangers invade, and maybe even when they attack they should make the imitated birdcall noise that they use to signal enemies. The Rangers should also slay anyone with neutral alignment with Gondor, as Faramir was commanded to slay anyone he found upon the road.
Haradrim should also rarely spawn, in large groups upon the Road.
Ithilien Ranger Hideouts should really be improved. Currently these are boring caves underground. I propose variation in them-enterences in the sides of hills, small camps in hollows, and more hidden variants.
Mordor Camps should also spawn here rarely. However, the tent colors should be changed to the red and black of the book, and the Morgul-Shrooms removed.
Three new structures should spawn, being evidence of the spawn of Mordor who roam the land.
- Feast Fire: A blackened pile of skulls, waste blocks, and charred wood. This is the fate of any Ranger who is captured by the Enemy.
- Refuse Pit: A pit of waste blocks, an open desecration of the landscape.
- Defiled Ruin: A Gondorian Ruin taken by the Enemy and defiled. Eyes and orkish writing are drawn all over it.
Thank you for reading this suggestion! As always, comments, kudos, and constructive critiscism are most welcome!