So there has been a new patch into LOTRO with new instances, a new raid, and a new part of the epic book and since I have a lifetime sub, I thought I would go check it out.
Of course, you can’t really check out the new bits of epic book quest until you’ve caught up with the part that you probably should have finished earlier. So this is where our heroine started her journey, trying to remember where she’d last left off.
While picking up my old quests and exploring/ getting lost in bits of Enedwaith that I had forgotten even existed I found a random stone that was glowy and clicked on it! Ping! A new deed popped up.
What this picture above means is that there are other mysterious glowy stones to find and if you can find all of them then your character will get a new title. “Calm before the Storm” is actually a pretty cool title I think, and this is a good example of how LOTRO deeds aren’t quite the same as collection quests but can sometimes have a lot in common.
As an explorer type of player, I love this stuff. It’s more interesting than just, “I see a shiny, I pick up a shiny, I put it in the right collection” which you get in Rift and EQ2 but you are still encouraged to go explore and find stuff. (Note: who am I kidding, there are probably player-generated maps online with all the mysterious stones marked on them but I’m going to pretend that isn’t true.)
Whilst still on the catching up phase of my questing, I failed the cardinal rule of things that you should do when you check out new content!
Yup, this was the hole I later fell down and died, even though burglars actually got a new ability this patch to Safe Fall. (Colours look weird because it was dark and underground so I’ve turned up the contrast for the screenie.) So when you log in after a new patch – check whether your trainers have any new skills to teach you!!!
One thing about LOTRO as a game, and the questing in general is that it genuinely does run at a different pace to games like WoW or Rift which have been more optimised to stop players getting bored. In LOTRO, it is entirely possible that you will be sent to the other side of the zone to find a remote dwarf fortress with a hidden entrance – and it may take you over an hour to find it. Some quests are quick, some are not. After a while, I find that I adjust and quite enjoy the slower “scenic route” but it really isn’t a game for all tastes.
And then, when you are least expecting it, they remind you that you’re in the LOTRO world with links to the main storyline and foreshadowings about where your character and companions may be heading in future.
One of the high points to me of Enedwaith is a solo section where you are able to sit in on a council of the neutral tribe of Dunlendings who you have been assisting. An envoy from Saruman has arrived to try to recruit them to his faction. You are there to represent the Dunadain (because the rest of the Grey Company is busy losing its collective bows or something). It’s a very well written scene, and will be a delight to LOTRO fans. The Dunlendings decide to stay neutral, but make it clear that they prefer your deeds to Saruman’s honeyed words.
And with that, I’m finally just about caught up to the new stuff. Arb has already tried out one of the instances and was raiding last night and her initial feedback has been pretty positive. I’m looking forwards to finding out for myself!