Hunters - Why We Love and Hate 'Em

Saturday, February 21, 2009

This will be the first of a series of posts talking about the different classes in LOTRO. Since I play a captain almost exclusively, I have to do research into any other class. This is pretty much just talking to my kinmates. What you'll see here will be a little basic, but if you have anything at all to add, definitely speak up in the comments section.

Hunters. One of the two most popular classes in LOTRO. Clearly a lot of people love them. Why? Because they are very very good at killing things. As one of my kinmates put it "Being able to rack up huge damage numbers fast is a real power trip." Being primarily a damage dealer means you're able to kill mobs fast, and killing mobs fast makes you feel powerful. Why do we play games? To escape. What's a good escape? To feel powerful. We're compensating for our lives which are all to often not as good as we'd want them. Is this overanalyzing the thing? I don't think so. And it's not a bad thing either. It's not unhealthy, nerdy, ect, ect. It just is. And it's not the only reason, but the damage massive dealing of a hunter appeals to some part of a psyche. I know when I crit or supercrit with my captain, especially on Devestating blow where I can see 1200+ damage, I feel good. I'm excited. It hits me with an endorphin rush perhaps. Add into this equation the ability to do this from a distance and you've got one nice dps class.

Still, for all that's good about hunters, sometimes we just don't like them. Mostly it's other hunters we don't like. I guess that's the case for any class, but because there are so many hunters, it's harder to find groups willing to take them. Especially if their previous experience with hunters has been bad - such as taking aggro, breaking mez, or in the open world, kill stealing (tagging a mob just before another player does).

There's also weaknesses to the class that can get in the way. Being a medium armor wearer, they're a bit more squishy and die more quickly. So, hunters might end up soloing a lot, have to convince others more so than normal of their value, and fight harder to stay alive in certain situations (such as multiple mobs).

I also want to add I get a bit of dps envy when I group with a hunter. I wield the slowest weapon in the game as a captain - the halberd. My overall damage each hit is higher, but because my skills aren't as powerful and my weapon is slower, I always feel like I'm going in slow motion when I have a hunter nearby. Now, that doesn't mean I hate hunters. It just means I need to get over something. Hehe. Captains bring their own goods to the table. But I'm saving that class for last.

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