Lake-Town is the new expansion city to the Kingdoms of Middle Earth that was released late November, and which will be available to everyone after the 4th of December for free! Unlike the 4 older cities, the style of the city matches that of the human Lake-town from the movies, instead of the familiar Elven or Dwarven theme. Although a lot in the city will seem familiar, some key differences with regards to gameplay and buildings also come with the 5th city. In this article I will sum up all available information on this newest city.
- 1. The Basics
- 2. The Buildings
- 2.1 Familiar Buildings
- 2.2 The new and changed Buildings
- 3. Construction
- 3.1 Lake-Town architects
- 3.2 Pearl and Lake-town architect full overview
- 4. Oysterboats, Pearls and Tactical training
- 4.1 Pearls
- 4.2 Oystering Research
- 4.3 TT training
- 5. Heroes
- 6. How to start with your City construction
1. The Basics
When opening up Lake-Town for the first time, you’ll see it has a completely different look and feel as compared to the older cities, sporting a more human appearance, of course inspired by the town as depicted in the Hobbit book and films.
Looking beyond that, we see that Lake-Town functions largely the same as the older cities. A lot of familiar buildings, of which some show some differences, and some new ones, which I will all discuss below.
The main function of Lake-Town which sets it apart from the other cities at the moment is the production and usage of Pearls, a new resource type. Although the Pearls factor into construction at some points as well, their ultimate purpose is to aid in training Tactical Troops, a feature players have long waited for.
2. The Buildings
Cities are made up of buildings, so it only makes sense to start with an overview of the buildings that make up Lake-town. I’ll start of with the buildings that remained (largely) unchanged in function and costs, and then move on to the buildings which have changed or are completely new.
2.1 Familiar Buildings
The following buildings feature in Lake-town and have not changed considerably in form or function from their older counter-parts. Please note that building/construction requirements are not included in these comparisons, so be sure to check part 3 out as well for more information on construction discrepancies!
- The Keep
- City Wall
- Great Hall
- Watch Tower
- Arboreum/ Lumber Mill
2.2 The new and changed Buildings
A couple of Buildings underwent some changes from their previous versions, while some are even completely new. Below are these buildings listed, with a small explanation of what their function is or in what way they changed from their older counter-parts.
- Lake-town Tower. A brand new tower for Lake-town exclusively, it functions in the same way as the Sage Tower in your other cities, although the Relics and Events tab are empty at the moment. It will function in Lake-town exclusive events or functions which will be introduced in the near-future. It is also a training requirement for all Tactical Troops.
- Oystering boats. Oysterboats are a new addition in your 5th city, and function as resource production units for Pearls, similar to the familiar Farms for example The differences is that for the time being, only 2 boats can be constructed and upgraded (which also needs Pearls). This means that production and storage capacity are limited compared to other resources. Pearl production can be boosted with:
- A Hero in the ‘Production’ slot in the Great Hall
- Leveling the Oysterboats
- Leveling the Oystering research (see part 4.2)
- Leveling the City Guardian Resource buff
- (Note: There are NO wilds to boost Pearl production yet)
Below are given amount of workers, Pearl production and storage capacity for each normal and Runecrafting level for the Oystering Boat:
- Vault. The Vault is largely identical to the Vault in other cities, but differs in the fact that the 5th city Vault is the only Vault that can store and protect your Gold and Pearls! But beware that it does not protect as much Gold and Pearls as normal resources. The following figure illustrates the amount of rss the vault protects:
Please note that the given numbers are unbuffed base numbers. For example, my Lake-town overview gives my protection limit as 1.79 m. I have a level 8 Vault (800k protection), lvl 10 Strongbox research (+100%), and our alliance “Keep it Safe” buff is at lvl 3 (+12%), totaling 1.792 m, just as reported.
Construction of buildings in your 5th city also largely remains identical. Buildings level up to 10 after which selected buildings can be Runecrafted. To go to level 10 you still need an HBC, and you need Forge/Ascension/Master runes to runecraft levels *4/*7/*10. Two new features have been introduced in Lake-town construction work to change things around a bit: Pearls and Lake-town architects.
3.1 Lake-Town architects
Lake-town architects are a new item introduced even before Lake-town was released in the shop, selling for 15 mithril. They serve a similar role as HBC’s and runes in being necessary to upgrade certain buildings to a particular level. They are needed in upgrading the Vault, Tower and Oystering Boats.
!Beware when buying Architects though. Although not all numbers are clear yet, it seems that you need around 40 architects to upgrade all buildings. 24 Are needed for the Oystering Boats, the most important ones. The rest goes into the Vault and Lake Town Tower. But the Tower can stay at level 7 for now at which point all Tacticals have been unlocked.
3.2 Pearl and Lake-town architect full overview
The following amounts of Pearls and Lake-town architects are needed in normal construction up to level 10. For completeness, the Oystering research has been given as well. Runecrafting numbers will follow.
4. Pearls and Tactical training
At the core of the Lake-town city is the production chain for producing Pearls which are used in some construction work, research, and primarily for the training of Tactical Troops. Some of the information has already been given elsewhere in the article, but is mentioned again here for completeness of this chapter.
Pearls are the new resource at the center of the supply chain. They can be produced in relatively small amounts by your Oystering Boats (see part 2.2) and also stored for limited amounts. Besides Tactical Troop training, Pearls are needed to upgrade some buildings in Lake-Town, such as The Lake-town Tower and the Oysterboats (see part 3.2).
4.2 Oystering Research
Oystering is a new research that can be found in any of your Academies. Its function is to increase resource production of Pearls by your Oysteringboats at 10% per level, similar to research such as Fertilizer and Masonry. Besides the normal resource requirements, Pearls are also needed here to upgrade the research (see part 3.2).
4.3 TT training
The culmination of the Pearl production line/process is the training of Tactical Troops. Although the icons for TT training are available in all cities, only Lake-town can have a Lake-town Tower and Oystering Boats, which are requirements, meaning TT can only be trained in Lake-town.
In general, the requirements for training aren’t very different from normal troops; you need resources, a certain level for some buildings and research, and like T4 troops, you need gold to train TT. Additionally, you need 1200 Pearls per TT trained, except for the Pack Mammoth and Lake-town Pikemen, which have lower requirements. The exact requirements for all Tactical Troops can be found in the table below:
With the new city also come new Heroes. The Main character from Lake-town in both the movies and the game is of course Bard the Bowman, the legendary archer who defended his city against Smaug previously and again in “The Battle of the Five Armies”.
Bard is the first Hero to show up in the Great Hall, but a “Call” item has to be used to unlock him, just like Beorn and Tauriel in C4. Additionally, Bard also has his own gear set already announced, which can be found in the Hero Equipment article here.
The other Heroes in Lake-town are again a mix of known and unknown characters:
6. How to start with your City construction
So you have the deed, the plain, and then the Lake-town city. But what are you going to construct first? Where is the focus. Well, from the numbers given throughout this article, it should be clear that you need quite an amount of Pearls to level up all the buildings and researches that require them at first, and then also for training Tactical Troops.
First things first though: Ship rss and gold from your other cities to Lake-town and bubble if you need or want to. Next level up your Great Hall to level 2-3. Then, if you planned right, level up (at least) two Heroes to level 240-250. Place these in the Great Hall positions ‘Production’ and ‘Construction’, speeding up resource production of Pearls and construction of all buildings. Make sure you keep enough gold in Lake-town to keep them assigned.
I suggest to make it your absolute priority to level up you Pearl producing capacity first after this. Level up the Oystering Boats and the Oystering research as soon as possible, for which you will need to construct an Academy as well, as it can only be researched in Lake-town due to requirements. You do not need to focus on regular resource production or troop training for now, only focus on these buildings for now, as the value of these in the newly introduced Tactical-Train-a-Thons is tremendous.
Even with some help from alliance members and tournament prizes (unless you do really good), you will sooner or later run out of Pearls, probably more than once. As normal resources can be gathered much faster and easier, use this time to focus on other buildings.
Upgrade the Vault a bit as to protect resources and Pearls, or stay under a bubble. Build one of each building (except for the Tavern) that can be constructed, and slowly start leveling these up. Leave resource production buildings like Farms for the time being; only construct one of each for buildings that have them as a building requirement.
The remaining empty lots will be filled with Homes and Barracks for training. Construct a few Homes to make sure you have population for your Oystering Boats, or build some more if you want to participate in train-a-thons soon. Same goes for Barracks. Construct and level up at least one Barrack to unlock the trainable units, and build more to shorten training times.
When deciding the number of Homes, you might want to keep in mind the fact that Pearl production and storage is limited, so only certain batches of TT can be queued at once. It would therefor follow you need less Homes compared to other cities, but if you are in an active alliance where many people can help you in tournaments by sending Pearls, you might want to construct some more Homes for more idle population.
Tip: You can get two more spaces for either Homes or Barracks by destroying the Academy after Oystering research is completed and destroying or not building a Stables. Stables is only necessary for training Lyncaen Raiders, so if you don’t want that, do not build it.
And that is about it. Primary focus is Pearl production, other buildings come second, resource production last or not even at all. Produce the Pearls, unlock the Tacticals for training, and optimize training speeds for competing in special tournaments.
If you have any numbers on the runecrafting parts of the charts mentioned in this article, please leave them in the comments. I’m nearly ready to start runecrafting some of the new buildings, but cannot acquire the Pearls at the moment to do it immediately.