Bit of Book 15 Trouble

Sunday, November 30, 2008

The kin helped me and another member out with Book 14, but before that they did a book 15 instance with some others that needed that chapter. Frankly, this quest is a royal pain in the posterior. We wiped both times we tried it. I mean, it's a long fight, and there's a fair bit you have to pay attention to. I'm rather annoyed by the whole experience. But that's kind of who I am. If something doesn't go successfully the first couple attempts or so, I move onto something else and go back later. Otherwise I'll just continue to be frustrated to the point of anger. Not healthy. So, I moved on. And so did the kin, going to the Book 14 instances.

But, I also feel like I somehow wasn't pulling my weight. Like, the first time I asked "go where?" "Where's that?" "Oh crap, now I'm dead." I felt slow on the uptake, dense, unskilled. I know I'm a decent player. LOTRO isn't particularly heavy on the skill-checks, but in this instance is very much a skill-check. And people thought the session play was difficult. That was cake compared to this. You really have to be on your toes. We even had two minstrels and I play a captain. That's a recipe for success if I've ever seen one. But alas, not the case. I really did feel somewhat helpless to what was going on around me.

We'll have to see how it goes in the future. Right now, I'm not very impressed.


First Look at Moria

I completed Book 1 of the epic quest line for Volume 2 and got my first taste of Moria, Durin's Hall, or Threshold. Can't remember what it was called off the top of my head. I can't wait to explore more, but I'm trying to get Book 15 finished before that.

Durin's Hall 1
Durin's Hall 2
Durin's Hall 3

I must say Turbine has much improved their cutscene sequences after a book completion. It looks freakin' amazing. Blew me away. No more of that in-game fuzzy rendering looking through a ring animation. While still the stylized loading screen thing, it's a pre-redered animation mini-movie thing. I'm much pleased with the improvements I see in this regard. As for the whole quest, yeah, it was cool, but after comming out of Book 14 totally blow away by the ending narrative moments, I'm a little underwhelmed by the enterance to Moria. I mean, we didn't even get to see the whole watcher, just the bloody tenticles. However, if I'm reading the deeds correctly, there will be two other encounters with the watcher that may fulfil my desire for a full on battle with the creature.

In other news, I've worked more with the lengendary item system, reforging my halberd and seeing how that process worked. I'm really enjoying this sytem and can't wait to get some better weapons in there for improvement. Obviously, since I haven't gotten into Moria yet, I'm not getting any new relics. I haven't even found a relic-master or whatever it's called either. Guess they're in Moria.


Do Not Run TOWARD A Balrog

Saturday, November 29, 2008

You will die. Or be defeated. Heck, you'll die. Why I didn't realize that? I don't know, but I didn't, and I died. Actually, I thought I was supposed to die, like in the session play associated with Laeradren. However, this time you're supposed to live and escape. Regardless, this session play featuring the Balrog was epic. I mean freaking cool. At least the Balrog part. The rest was kind of drivel quests leading up to it. Yes, the real meat was the visuals. So, this is a screenshot post, but I will say, it's probably better to experience it for yourself in full moving glory. Not sure why I'm even bothering, but I'll do it anyway.

We'll start out with Dwalin's Throne Room. You thought Thorin's Hall was sweet, wait till you get a load of this...

Throne Room 1
Throne Room 2

Now the big daddy of them all.

All His Glory
Oh Crap!

You can barely make it out in the last picture (The originals are 1680 x 1050) but that's over half a million hit points on this sucker. And the first Arch Nemesis I've seen. Wow.


A New Volume

I broke my creed to do the epic book quests in order. That is go through the books in sequence. However, since there's hardly a soul out and about in Forochel for me to finish Book 14, and that book is required to start on Book 15, I went ahead and ran through Eregion to complete Book 1 of Volume 2. This book is required in order for you to 1) get into Moria, and 2) get a legendary weapon. I've accomplished number 2 at this point.

The legendary item system is much more straight forward once you're working with it directly, rather than have someone type or talk about it. Get your weapon, identify your weapon, equip your weapon, slot your relics, settings, etc. Name your weapon if you get a naming scroll. And then start bashing mobs with it to give you XP. Now, your first legendary weapon requires you to have it equipped to get XP. All other legendary weapons do not. Unfortunately, this weapon isn't as good as my Mirrored Ancient Steel Halberd crafted for me by a kinmate, but in order to progress, I need to set my lovely pointed object aside and go for a slightly lesser one.

However, as the weapon gains levels, you have the opportunity to increase it's power and therefore even my first legendary item, a purple, could become stronger than my Ancient Steel Halberd - a teal item.

I'm definitely looking forward to getting into Moria itself and being able to start working on better weapons and collecting the bits used in the system.

Going back to Book 1 of Volume 2 (Hence forth just book 1 or B1), I'm miffed that I forgot to take a screenshot of the door. It's quite beautiful and perfectly portrayed from the books. The quests of B1 aren't anything spectacular save one, but just being on the brink of Moria is enough to get me excited. I look forward to delving more into the epic quests and moria, but for the former, I'll be going back to my sequential ways by finishing Books 14 and 15 of Shadows of Angmar before I continue on the Volume 2 epic.


A Grey Day in Eregion

Today I went into Eregion (Caution: Map in link may contain spoilers) for the first time. Unfortunately, it wasn't sunny, but I still think the beauty of the landscape comes through. One of the things I loved about Forochel was the way the devs made the region seem much more open and expansive. Indeed, it was fairly large, but the way the terrain was built you felt less closed in. They've applied the same principle to Eregion, giving it a wonderful wide open scrub land like appareance in most parts.

To me, this approaches what Rohan should be like, only more open and more vast. Wide plains to roam across. I really like Eregion. You can get anywhere fairly directly and the mobs are easy enough to avoid if you're going cross-country. Some places the only way to get to a quest hub is cross country, so keeping it relatively easy to move about is important. One of the reasons Angmar is one of my least favorite zones is because of the density and level of the mobs, posing problems for getting around in Easter Angmar in particular. Then again, it's Angmar for crying out loud. It should not be easy to move about in a barren wasteland ruled by the Enemy.

Lastly, I'd like to finish this post up with a few screenshots. I must say again I'm quite pleased with the look of this part of Middle-Earth. My questing hasn't been extensive save for working on Volume 2, Book 1, but I'll save that for another post.

Landscape 1
Landscape 2
Landscape 3
Jaxom in the Moonlight


I'm Finally in MoM

Okay, after a whole slew of frustration regarding my computer and its upgrade. Well, it was a whole new build, but anyway, I'm finally back into LOTRO. Happy Thanksgiving by the way. So, amongst all the normal things to be thankful for (family, friends, food, football) I'm also thankful I've gotten my computer up and running.

Unfortunately, this is not a first impressions of Moria, but rather of how the game looks now that my system is upgraded... phenomenal. I'm amazed at how well this game looks. Having the DX10 shadows on now really helps bring the world some depth and life. I'm also stoked about my frame rate, which is incredibly better with my new graphics card, an ATI Radeon HD 4870 1GB.

I'll probably post some screenshots when I get out to Eregion, one of the new regions. Some place I haven't been yet.

One of the things I wanted to do was to get some video capture of the game in the higher quality settings. Unfortunately, now that I have vista, I seem to be unable to get any video capture software to pick up the game's graphics. Just a black screen. Kinda annoying. I'll have to research the issue further.


More Moria Videos

Friday, November 21, 2008

Massively has linked to three more videos about Moria. Now, if you're a devoted player (I hesitate to use the word hardcore) you'll have already seen Moria. But for those who are lagging, for whatever reason (like me), here's more little tid-bits for you.


ETA on Getting Back Into LOTRO

My motherboard and processor will arrive on the 24th. My HD, RAM, vidcard, and power supply will arrive on the 25th. My case will arrive on the 26th. And I'll be out of town the 27th and 28th for Thanksgiving. So the 29th I'll be building the computer, reinstalling software, etc. I might make it on that evening. More probably it'll be Sunday afternoon, the 30th. That's 9 days from now. The wait is too long if you ask me, but I'm excited about it. Not only will I get back into the game, but I'll also be able to play with the settings maxed out. It'll be sweetness for sure.


Whole Slew of News

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

So a whole slew of news is passing me buy without posting about it. I'm just so bloody tired after work that most of the time I eat dinner, half-way fall asleep in front of the television for an hour... maybe... and then I go to bed. I don't want to think, let alone read something. We'll see how it goes.

But, since I'm writing this, I'll post something of interest, albeit without my thoughts. There is a two part interview with Jeffery Steefel over at IncGamers. Never heard of the site before but I found it through the TenTonHammer feed. Should be interesting to hear what Mr. Steefel has to say. He's always so excited about the game that anytime I hear or read something where he makes comment, I want to play. I appreciate that coming from the lead guy on LOTRO. It really helps push the game forward if the devs are excited about their work.

Oh, and the new computer is on it's way... or at least the parts are so I should be able to get back into the game without dealing with any more of these stupid motherboard problems.


MoM Collector's Edition Spread

So I bought the Collector's Edition of Mines of Moria. Or rather LOTRO, because every box comes with Shadow's of Angmar as well. Anyhow, I picked that up last night from my local GameStop. Of course, I entered the product key, and installed the game and patched the game etc etc. But what I'm most interested in mentioning today is some of the perks that came with the CE. The best way to describe them would be to show them, so I took a few pictures.

The Box
- Pretty cool box if you ask me. There's a magnet that keeps it closed. Much more elegant than a tab or Velcro.

The Box Opened - Oooh! Goodies!

The Spread - So here's the "bang for the buck". Some people might argue 80 bucks wasn't worth it. I argue it so very much was. Because I, despite wanting to remain an unbiased observer of LOTRO, am still a "fanboi" at heart. I really do love this game. I already posted on what's included in the CE, so check out the archives or the official site for that info.

Moria Map - I'm a map nerd. I love maps. Any kind of maps. Even game maps. I love them all. And having a cloth map of the Moria zones is epic for me. Actually, I can't decide what I like more, the nice little gold One Ring sitting there, or the map. It's all cool. And of course, there's the sound track and art book in there as well. Like I said, well worth the money.


Massively Article Round-Up

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Massively has posted an article round-up concerning the Mines of Moria. Any and all articles concerning the Mines of Moria are all referenced on one page, so no digging through their archives or mine for links.

Only a few hours away!


Lower Level Mines of Moria Content

Monday, November 17, 2008

Does it exist? Well, to some extent. Certainly the Mines themselves are only open to higher level players, ideally 50-60. But, there is an associated "free" content update in the form of Book 15, as well as combat revamps, a Moors revamp, improved itemization with quests, two new classes, etc. Take a look at this Massively article for the full low down.

In my mind, the Mines, being only open to high level players, is really where this expansion is at. The epic quest line, the legendary items, and the high level instances. Where it really shines for the low level players is the two new classes to try out. If you're one of those casual gamers that likes to dabble in a bit of everything for a couple hours a day or every other day, the two new character slots will give you the space needed to try out both new classes.

The Mines are only a night away!



Mines of Moria releases tomorrow. I'll be stopping by my local GameStop where I preordered the game to pick it up. I'm quite excited. Unfortunately, I'm not sure of my work schedule tomorrow and the rest of the week, so I might not have much time for first impressions. But I'll try to get something up.

Granted, I'll need to go through the first chapter of volume 2 before I can really give impressions of the new world content, but I'll probably give a brief overview and commentary of some of the UI changes when I log in tomorrow night.


What Will I do Moria?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Jump off the the Bridge of Khazadum. Why? Just because I can.

Well, actually, I'll be trying to finish up book 14 so I can jump right into book 15 and then into Volume 2, chapter 1 and get into Moria proper. The only way you can get into Moria is if you have a legendary weapon and you can only get your first legendary weapon through V2B1C1... or 2.1.1. That'll be my first goal. And of course, from there I just start checking out the Moria content.

But the real question is if I roll one of the new classes. I really like the idea behind both the new classes - gambits for the Warden and the dichotomy of the Rune Keeper. I will probably try both through the starter instance, just to get a flavor for the classes, but I'm not sure if I'll be keeping any of them around for continued play. My current alts aren't above level 12, and I've been mainly focusing on crafting. I'm a pretty monogamous player when it comes to my characters.

Speaking of crafting, I'm very much looking forward to leveling through the additional tiers of crafting. While cooking and farming aren't the most exciting of crafts, they level pretty quickly. I'm curious to how the crafting guilds specifically work and how it affects crafting.

Oh, and seriously, I will be jumping from the Bridge of Khazadum if I can.


Mines of Moria Patch Notes

You know the moment is near when the patch notes are released. Patience, the LOTRO community manager, released the patch notes for Mines of Moria today. If you're interested in very specific information about changes, fixes, etc, look here. However, you will not find any spoilers about Moria. I know my tongue is now wet... Only three days!


Hero's Guide to the Waterworks

Friday, November 14, 2008

Just like Durin's way before it, Turbine has another Hero's Guide, this time to the Waterworks. Again, there are minor spoilers to be had, but if you want to know every thing you can know before getting into Moria, this is an article for you.



Uh-oh, here's the dreaded comparison post. Well, not really. At least, I'm not arguing blindly for one being better and the other being a knock-off copycat.

Massively has a good article detailing differences and similarities. While not as extensive as I would have liked, I'm quite pleased with the results. Never trust a blind post on some forums for your info on what game has what feature and which one is better. Heck, never trust a blog either, but leave it to the professional game journalists to do the job for you. Check out the article.

Now, here's my feelings...

First, I've never played any MMO except for LOTRO. Therefore, any opinion I have of WoW is only through third parties. Fortunately, I have spent a good deal of time immersing myself in the MMO world and blogosphere so I can get a good idea of what different MMOs are like. My sister and her boyfriend also play WoW, so I have a close source for questions, comments, ect.

To me, WoW is indeed that 800 pound gorilla that no game will ever surpass. Well, never say never right? How about this - that will probably never be surpassed. If this game were a physical object on the earth, it would throw the planet's gravity out of whack it's that huge. LOTRO, on the other hand, is a comparably much smaller game. And that's fine with me. I appreciate the audience we have built, and while more is better because more means money for better gaming, I'm content with the population we have.

Juding from my third party sources mentioned above, the game does seem very similar, but there's no need to call either one a rip off. It's a product of the business, and business's copy other businesses when they're competing for the same consumer - in this case the MMO player. There are very similar mechanics, and there are a few different mechanics.

Where the differences truely lie is in what I'd like to call the atmosphere. WoW presents a very different type of fantasy setting than LOTRO. I'd call LOTRO's fantasy a real fantasy. That might seem like an oxymoron, but I agree with Massively's take on it. This world is inhabited by something, that while fantastical, would not seem out of place in our own world's past. It feels natural and normal, particularly in the game setting. WoW on the other hand presents a whole weath of different fantastical and sometimes flamboyant elements. The fantasy is the world and the world exists for the fantasy. LOTRO, the fantasy exists for the world. It is the world that defines what exists and what doesn't whereas WoW gives the impression that this world was created to showcase many of these really cool fantasies.

Some might argue this realism makes LOTRO boring. I find it quite the contrary. It makes it compelling - at least for me. Experiencing something that I could accept in the real world, even if in the past, brings me into the game world and atmosphere. I feel like I could be there. It helps sell the game for me. And of course the lore of the world, being a fan of Tolkien, helps a great deal.

I hope my thoughts on this weren't too scattered. My current job is very physical and I mostly feel like crashing into my bed when I come home at night. Updates to this blog will be more scattered, but hopefully regular enough to fulfill my own goal of having a regularly updating LOTRO blog to read. But of course the Mines of Moria expansion comes out on Tuesday, so despite my exhaustion, there will be a wealth of new first-hand posts to be had.


Hero's Guide to Durin's Way

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

So there's a "Feature Article" over on the main LOTRO site detailing the lore and geography of Durin's Way, one of many sub-regions within Moria. I have to warn you, there's storyline spoilers within, so if you want to get your story only when your in-game and questing, do not read this article. If your one of those people that are voraciously devouring any and all Moria content you can get your hands on... well, you probably didn't need me to tell you this article is up, but in any case, you're sure to inhale this article as fast as any other.


Another Legendary Guide

Monday, November 10, 2008

Just as the player created legendary item guide showed up on the Lorebook last week, this week we see another guide created by the folks over at TenTonHammer.com. It seems to cover the same information, so it's really just a matter of personal preference which one you read or refer back to. But for my part, I'm telling you it exists.


Pre-Download Mines of Moria

Turbine is offering a downloader program to pre-patch the Mines of Moria content. Obviously, you'll only be able to experience that content once MoM goes live on the 18th, but you won't be waiting ages for the game to patch when the servers come up. If you need help with the process, there is a walkthrough as well.


New Time Priorities

Sunday, November 9, 2008

I've gotten a seasonal job that has the potential to keep me out for 11 to 12 hours a day, which means updates to this blog will be potentially few and far between, even with the release of Mines of Moria. Hopefully I'll find some time to get things posted by rearranging the other priorities. In the meantime, expect most updates on the weekend, when I'm not working.


Moria Monsters

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Yet another dev diary for me to point out today, this time in relation to the monsters of Moria. The guy who comes up with all the skills and monster behavior wrote an epic piece on the principles of the new behaviors seen in Moria monsters. I don't know if these will be carried over to those in Shadows of Angmar or not, but it sounds like fights will be a lot more interesting.

The last page details some of the more common monsters and their behaviors. Certain mobs require a Monster Corruption dispelling skill to get rid of buffs they put on themselves. Others can be dazed or mezed to solve the problem, while still others you can simply run out of range of their skill if you can't dispell it in any way.

Now, as a Captain, I have a couple concerns. First, our dispelling skill is gated behind two other skills, the first of which requires a hit in order to open the series. So, not only do I have to work through the skill progression, I have to count on a hit on the skill that's not even the one that dispells the corruption to even have the possibility of doing so.

Second, we dont' have any mez or daze skills, so we cannot avoid the mobs whose behavior is modified by doing so. Now, the dev diary does say even-level mobs are still designed to be one-on-one soloable, but I have my doubts as to the captain's viability if two of the new behaviors are difficult if not impossible to deal with. Time for me to check out the captian forums and see if there's any hubub about it. Likely I'll find the usual complaining.


Designing Moria

There's a small five page overview of how the design of Moria came about, from the technology to the art concepts. Check it out. Fairly simple and barely an introduction, but still interesting.


A Cluster F***?

A new dev diary is up on the official site today called Anatomy of a Cluster. In it, Amlug details how their changing the structure of instances to better relate to each other, creating what they call a cluster. In Urugarth, Carn Dûm, Barad Gularan, and The Rift, there is no obvious progression through the instances, nor any relation to them other than the story - if you so choose to read the story. Otherwise, they're just bad, dark places in the world where you kill stuff like trolls and orcs and the like.

Now, certain games have created progressions through instances where you are required to follow a specific path gated through hard locks, gear, or some other means. In LOTRO, this is not the plan. There should be no reason why you cannot do one instance before another (or raid). However, by going through the instances, there will be rewards that give you abilities or stats that will help you in later instances of the same cluster.

For example, going through one of the new instances in Moria and completing it's "challenge" (the objective giving you these rewards) will give you a part of a piece of the corresponding raid's gear set. In this case, that piece of gear, when ultimately assembled, gives you radiance which helps with gloom. Radiance and gloom are apparently an expansion of the hope and dread system. I do not have any details of how this works at the moment, but I will definitely talk about it when I encounter it in the game or in a future dev diary.

Basically, the point of the diary is that instances will now be linked together in a cluster, with a reward system tying them together. By working through this progression, in no particular order, you'll be better set for the raid at the end. So, there is a one-two system here. Instances, then raid.

I've not been raiding in LOTRO, so I do not know what the experience is like, nor much about the raid locking system. I'm thus not a good judge of if this system is better than the not-worded-as-such cluster f*** in Shadows of Angmar (Amlug would have prefered to see the four instances I mentioned above put in a cluster).


Another Welcome Back Weekend

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Turbine is doing another extended welcome back weekend for former LOTRO players. If you're reading this blog, I would assume you're already a LOTRO player, but if you know anybody who has played and might want to jump in for a few days to play for free, then this is there chance, and let them know.

Now, last time this happened, there was a queue to get into the servers, and a certain number of paying players were ticked off that they had to wait in line behind (presumably) people who were not paying. That seems a bit arrogant to me, and if the free players were the only ones who had to wait in line, then that would be a big hindrance to the whole point of the weekend - getting former players back into the game, and perhaps buying the Mines of Moria expansion. So, give them the best customer service they can get, and then they'll be more players in the game potentially. And that benefits everybody in the end.


Exclusive MMORPG Outfit

MMORPG.com is offering an exclusive LOTRO outfit simply by logging in to their site. Once you do that, go to the following link and follow the directions there. You'll need to enter the product key you'll get into your Turbine account page.

I think the outfit looks pretty cool, so if you're into the cosmetic items, and want another outfit, this is a good one to get.


You're Insane!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Sunday night I logged into LOTRO, my intent merely to check on things, see if anybody was on, and check up on how much food was still in the kinhouse. If I haven't mentioned it already, I'm a yeoman, so that gives me the professions of farmer, cook and tailor. I have leveled the first two to Grand Master, so I like to keep the kinhouse stocked with level 40 food (the top tier) for use by my kinmates. Well, so long as I have the coin to cook it, since I do this pro-bono. Sometimes I get donations though.

Anyway, I managed to run into some people doing 13.9 (link contains spoilers), which is where I was at in the epic quests. We finished the book, and since two of my kinmates helped, we just went off to do our own thing afterwards. This happened to be killing various things in Carn Dûm (the non-instanced part) for one of them on 8.1 (link contains spoilers). Well, our tank randomly decided it would be fun to aggro four trolls, two angmarim, and an orc, all even level Elites. I didn't have time to say it then, but I was thinking "You're insane!"

Oh, and guess who had to heal through all that? Me. The Captain. No minstrel. My heals are miniscule compared to the minnies. And another thing. Our other member was a hunter. DPS squishy. He was on his own. But guess what... we didn't wipe. No one died. Our tank held aggro like gorilla on both coffee and steroids. And I spammed Words of Courage, my shield brother heal, the shield brother healing buff, and Rallying Cry. Then that wasn't enough. Grimbur (our tank) was still going down. I saw him pop his own pots, but we weren't going to make it. So I hit what I like to term the "oh shit" combo. It's In Harms Way, followed by Last Stand... which allows me to take all the damage from the whole fellowship, but not die in the process. Then, once Last Stand is almost over, I hit Strength of Morale, an massive heal skill from a man racial trait. This bought our tank some time to refresh some of his morale pool, and me more morale to work with in helping heal him.

So we survived, barely. Grimbur, you're insane! But it was epic!


A New Lease on Virtual Life

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I picked up a motherboard second hand, to replace my dead one. Hopefully this one will last. I first looked around a new ones, but I couldn't seem to find one with an AGP slot... which is the old tech that my graphics card uses. Looks like they don't really make them anymore. So I found one on the cheap via a friend of mine. Actually, I'm not sure where he gets his parts, so I'm a little leery about the quality. Seems to be working find at the moment. We'll see.

But hey, that means I'm back into LOTRO... and in time for MoM!


My Rivendell Hazing

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Back in beta just after they opened Rivendell to us testers, my kin decided they were going to take me on a Rivendell Run. Now, the reason this was (and still is, to a lesser degree) significant is that there is not a clear path (i.e. without mobs) between the Fords of Bruinen and Rivendell. I was also somewhere between level 10 and level 20, if my memory serves me. Finally, the mobs I just mentioned are low to mid 30s. Not healthy for a little lowbie like I was. But hey, that's what was so fun for me and my kinmates (who were higher than me, but just able to do the content out there anyway).

Their advice to me before we set out. "Don't stop running. And don't aggro anything." Sounds like a blast. It was indeed a blast. We're running along through the Trollshaws, and I see my first mob, an Auroch (which were present and elites then) standing in the middle of the road. I'd never seen these massive cattle-like creatures before, so not only are they the largest buggers I've ever run into but hot-damn I see a purple name. Purple is a bad, bad color. It means that it will kill you if you even breathe.

I mention something to this effect in the kinchat. Their response "Just be glad we're not running this at night. The trolls come out and actually chase you." Trolls... well, I guess that's why it's called the Troll Shaws. Bloody hell.

The next major event happened when they decided to break their own advice and tell me to stop runing. Why? Well, we were going to visit some drakes. WTF is a drake? I ask. You'll see, they tell me. I can just read their mischievous grins in the chat. Turns out a drake is a very, very small version of a dragon. Most of them don't fly, but when you have a mob that's a good 10 times my body mass and spits fire at you... well, it doesn't really mater that it technically isn't a dragon. You're just as dead either way.

So I stand and watch as they show off by taking down this monsterous beast. But I was impressed... after I got done pissing myself.

What was so... anti-climactic, in a sense, was actually getting to Rivendell. Sure, I was stoked to actually visit one of the most serene places in Middle-Earth. A peaceful refuge in an otherwise hostile world. The nerd moment was epic. But that drake sure gave the elves a run for their money.

All in all an absolute blast. I must say though, as much as these guys are still cool, them drakes are no longer a match for my mighty level 50 epicness. Yes, that 324 probably would have made me toast back in the day. Mmmm, extra crispy.


A Legendary Read

At some point I'll be done using the word "legendary" to describe anything and everything related to the Legendary items system. Apparently that point hasn't come yet. The most recent dev diary about the Legendary items concerns the quests associated with it. In short, this is a nice little insight into the developer process... and the woes of screwing it up.


Legendary Player Guide on Legendary Weapons

Pyroburn, a fellow LOTRO player, has created a wonderful guide for legendary items. I dare say it's better than the official dev diaries. Or maybe it's just the fact that I've read through how this system works a few times now so I'm finally starting to get it through rote. In any case, it really is a great guide and I can't say enough times how much I'm excited about this system.