Portal   Forum   Members   Market   Gallery   Events

Update on me and my new game: LOTRO

Discussion in 'MSC Clan' started by dcwilson26, Nov 11, 2007.

  1. dcwilson26

    dcwilson26 MSC Knight

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2005
    Messages:
    253
    Likes Received:
    10
    Market Rating:
    0
    Hello everyone! Its me, Agarwaen, and I thought I would post here to let all of you know how I am doing and what I have been up to. So lets start from the beginning; right after I left MSC to persue "bigger and better" things.

    I left MSC a while back to follow Fujin, Shack and Firemane into the guild, Onslaught. I had a lot of fun with them and the guys were great. We got to the point where we could field two simultaneous Kara groups each week and we were flying through the bosses like they were nothing. After a few weeks, I finally got my member status and was very excited to start using my new DKP on the great tank items that were dropping left and right. It was at this same time, that I took a week off to visit my parents in California and when I came back, Onslaught was no more. Some real life feud between the leaders spelled the doom of Onslaught and in that short week, the guild had disbanded and said its goodbyes. Needless to say, I was crushed and it was at this moment that I completely lost my drive to play WoW. I had put in so much effort and risked so much to find a guild that really fit me and now it was gone forever. So with my drive to play WoW gone, I found myself in need of a new addiction to spend my free time on.

    Months earlier I had bought the pre-order of The Lord of the Rings Online (LOTRO) and played for free on their beta server before the official release of the game. While the game was very fun, especially with my extensive Lord of the Rings knowledge, the timing of its release was horrible. It released around the same time as the latest big WoW patch and I found myself back playing WoW and doing all the new quests and discovering the new features. So my LOTRO character was put on the shelf while I ran around Azeroth. But after the collapse of Onslaught, I was conveniently thrown back into the world of Middle Earth. I convinced one of my real life friends (a Lord of the Rings nut like me) to buy the game and since then, I haven't played WoW at all. In fact, after I bought and installed Vista last month, I don't even have WoW installed on my computer.

    So that's what I have been doing the last few months. LOTRO is a great new game with a lot of similarities and differences to WoW. So here is a little overview of LOTRO. I have the ability to hand out 30-day free trials to anyone so after reading this, if you would like to try the game out for a while, just let me know.

    LOTRO is very similar to WoW in the sense that you create a character, choose its class and then level it up from level 1 to level 50 (the current cap in LOTRO). There are four races to choose from; Hobbits, Men, Elves and Dwarves, each with their own starting location. After you choose your race, you can choose from 7 classes (like WoW, not all are available to each race). Characters have Morale and Power instead of Health and Mana. The classes are as follows:

    Guardian: much like a warrior in WoW, a basic tank
    Captain: a support class that gives buffs, similar to a Paladin
    Champion: a duel-wielding, DPS class that can also off-tank
    Burgler: a rogue-like class that can cloak
    Lore-master: a mage-like class that has pets and uses lore (like magic, but a lesser form since only the Wizards can really use magic)
    Hunter: ranged DPS but without pets like in WoW
    Minstrel: main healer like a priest, uses music to raise morale (life)

    The timeline of the game takes place during Frodo's journey from the Shire to Rivendell. Aside from the little quests you will encounter on your journey, there is also an epic questline that follows the lore or Middle-Earth and allows you to interact with characters from the fellowship. This epic questline takes you through "Books" each with a number of quests called "Chapters". Every patch that is released opens up a new Book which progresses the epic storyline. There are plans to eventually add more lands with the new books, the first of which would be Moria and would eventually open up nearly all of Middle Earth in the distant future.

    The one major difference between LOTRO and WoW is that you do not use skill points to buy new skills and talents, rather, everyone can buy the same skills. This could be changed in the future, but right now, there is little customization of classes. However, there are usually aura's that open and close certain skills so that you can, for example, switch from being a DPS Minstrel to a healing Minstrel by just activating a different aura. This makes questing a little more bearable for the non-dps classes and stops the endless gear switching needed in WoW. To make up for the lack of skill customization, LOTRO introduces the "Trait" system. As you venture through Middle Earth, you will receive traits from killing a number of certain monsters, finding landmarks/relics, or completing quests in an area. Although there are dozens of traits in the game, only a few can be "equipped" thus letting you decide which bonuses you would like to have. There are 4 types of traits: Virtues, which you get from killing/finding things in Middle Earth; Class traits, which are unique to your class; Racial traits, which are unique to your race; and Legendary traits, which are obtained at a high level through finding pages to legendary books. While questing for traits you also acquire titles and you can also give yourself a surname. For example, I created a Hobbit Minstrel named Linaric. Through questing and customization, I am now known as Linaric Stormsong, Foe of Night.

    Parties, known as Fellowships, consist of a max of 6 members rather than 5. As of the current book, Book 11, there are 2 raid instances. One is a 24 person max while the other is 12. Instances and raids tend to be less class specific. So rather than waiting all day for a Warlock so you can run Mech, as long as you have a guardian and a minstrel, you are pretty good to go.

    With Book 11 came the most anticipated new feature, housing. I recently bought a hobbit hole just south of Michel Delving in the Shire and my Kinship (guild) bought a Kinship Hall near Thorin's Gate (the dwarf main city). Houses and Halls are in its infancy so their customization and usefulness is lacking but Book 12, which is unscheduled for December is supposed to add much more customization to the game. Right now, houses are a very expensive novelty that provides a meeting place and a place to store more stuff (other than the banks which work just like they do in WoW).

    My house in the Shire (click to enlarge):
    [​IMG]

    Overall LOTRO is a lot of fun and the graphics are just amazing. I am in a raid kin named There and Back Again and we are the most progressed kin on our server. The gap between casual and raider is not as distant as in WoW and the difficulty factor is not as high which makes the game a perfect fit for me.

    If any of you want to try the game out, just post here of PM me with your email and I can send you a free trial game code. I hope you enjoyed my very long article and I can't wait to read your feedback. I hope everyone is doing well. I miss you guys!

    Official LOTRO website: http://www.thelordoftheringsonline.com/
     
  2. Jakeman

    Jakeman MSC Founder and Donator

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2000
    Messages:
    25,758
    Likes Received:
    27
    Market Rating:
    16
    That game looks neat, but how hardcore is it? I am done with hardcore MMOs after WoW... people don't handle them well which destroys the atmosphere. I currently have Mythos in my sights as a possible casual MMO.
     
  3. dcwilson26

    dcwilson26 MSC Knight

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2005
    Messages:
    253
    Likes Received:
    10
    Market Rating:
    0
    It can be hardcore if you want it to, but since this is based on Lord of the Rings, there is a lot of casual roleplaying going on. If you are a casual player, you can use your time grinding reputation for the different factions, collecting materials for crafting or kill monsters for your traits and titles. There is also a built in music system where you can buy a lute or about 6 other instruments and use your keyboard like a piano keyboard and play music for people. Or if you are like me, you can buy a house and spend all day decorating it and planning house parties. Right now the Harvest Festival is going on which features games and horse races. When book 12 comes out in December, its supposed to also unlock the Winter Festival. Lately I have been doing less raiding (which only takes two-three hours to fully clear anyway) and working on my crafting. The crafting system in LOTRO is much different than WoW. You cannot select individual trade skills but instead you must choose a profession which includes 3 pre-set trade skills. For the most part you get one gathering skill to support your main crafting skill with a 3rd skill thrown in that requires help from another profession to complete. There are 5 tiers of crafting and after each tier is completed, you can move on to the next tier. Also, by crafting stuff in the previous tier you work towards mastering that tier meaning that you can create a "critical chance" on a crafted item in that tier. The criticals have better stats than the normals but there is a certain percent chance to crit which can be increased with better crafting tools or by using certain crafting items. Right now I am working on being a Grand Master Tailor which is the highest tier mastery and will allow me to crit some epic armor. I'm almost half way to Grand Master and after that I will probably work on my reputations which I have neglected. Needless to say, there is plenty of stuff to do which can be done on your own terms. The raiding and instance runs don't take very much time so I do those on my days off whenever I have a chance. Overall I consider myself a casual player and I am quite happy with the amount of content at the moment. I am also eagerly awaiting the next book which is now only a month away.
     
  4. Jakeman

    Jakeman MSC Founder and Donator

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2000
    Messages:
    25,758
    Likes Received:
    27
    Market Rating:
    16
    I don't know. It sounds a lot like wow. Players in wow don't have to be hardcore either, but the end game corrupts them. Pretty soon everyone is compromising on their casual fun. It's like heroin hero where the pink dragon represents epics that are constantly being upgraded through content patches:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CkZyeTWnE0U

    You never catch the dragon... you just slowly deteriorate in the pursuit of it. Eventually most wowers get sucked in and many of them can't handle it. Guilds kerplode, drama ensues, people rage quit and grief quit, etc. This makes for an unfortunate atmosphere that really takes away from the game. The hyjal forum epitomizes the worst of it where everyone is so angry and hostile.

    After 3 years of this I am feeling thoroughly disillusioned with this type of game. Wow has broken me.
     
  5. Lurk

    Lurk Peasant and Donator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2000
    Messages:
    2,586
    Likes Received:
    47
    Market Rating:
    0
    Well, I'm not sure that making a fully "casual" MMO will solve the problem. If you don't keep putting a carrot out there (pink dragon), people will eventually get bored and quit when they no longer have anything to do. This is the phenomenon you witness when non-raiders either quit or convert to raiders. While I do wish that end-game content was a little more accessible to "casuals," you have to keep a degree of difficulty there for the game to remain viable. If the end-game bosses (right now Archimonde and Illidan) were as farmable as say Baal was in D2, WoW would have died out long ago.

    D2 was not an MMO, but it serves my purposes for the following illustration:

    If you make the entire game accessible (read: farmable) by casual players, you have to give something else up to keep some distance between that pink dragon and the outreached arms of the masses. The ease with which D2 bosses could be killed meant that their loot tables were completely random. In Hell difficulty, Baal could drop any unique or set item in the game, but you never knew which one he might drop, and there were times when he may not drop any. I farmed that bastard until I was sick of it and he never dropped the chest piece for the set I wanted.

    If on the other hand, the set items dropped off of specific bosses, as they do in WoW, I could just focus my farming and collect the set I wanted... and then what? I experienced this phenomenon in WoW when I finished my Dungeon 2 set. I had a blast doing it, I was one of the few on the server who did... and then what? I was done with the content I had access to. My only choices were to quit or graduate to higher content, which meant leaving MSC for a raid guild.

    You yourself Jake are there too. What do you do now that's "casual fun?" You don't. You raid or you stand in IF. That's it. I'm not criticizing, I'm just pointing out that people don't "compromise" anything by joining a raid guild. Stop making it sound like we've sold our souls to the demons of WoW. It's inaccurate and smacks of sour grapes. Some of the most successful raid guilds raid 12 hours a week. That's it. Far less time than "casuals" spend grinding PvP or running heroics. Those guilds advance by NOT farming the same content over and over, but by forcing themselves to progress. (And by not ****ing around for 30+ min before every pull.) Don't be surprised when some guilds find ZA too hard at first and stick to Kara until others have figured out ZA and updated Deadly Boss Mods and published all of the strats. And these are usually the same guilds that wonder why they can't advance as fast as the ones who raid more efficiently.

    Anyway... to Agar's specific situation. Onslaught's breakup had NOTHING to do with the content of WoW or burnout or loot issues. The problem was a personal one that involved online (and rumors of RL) marital infidelity. I would use it as a warning against the slippery slope of online flirtation, something about which I have some knowledge, but in this case the content of WoW was not contributory to the guild breakup. I have moved on to a guild with a similar atmosphere, and Agar if you ever want to come back I could make a spot for you.
     
  6. dcwilson26

    dcwilson26 MSC Knight

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2005
    Messages:
    253
    Likes Received:
    10
    Market Rating:
    0
    My account is still active but I've just been too lazy to spend the three-four hours installing and updating the game on my new computer. I'm having a blast with LOTRO but when the WoW expansion comes out, I will buy it and continue playing Agarwaen, just not as much as I use to since I will likely still be playing LOTRO.

    I forgot to mention another important part of LOTRO, and that is the PvP. The game was designed so that you could only be on the side of "good". So while you are questing, there are no player controlled "horde" characters trying to kill you. However, there is a specific zone that is designed for PvP. As you level up your "good" character, you receive destiny points which you can spend on a Monster character to play in the Ettinmoors (the PvP area). I have yet to play the PvP because I have been too busy leveling up and grinding the various grinds but there are 5 or 6 monster characters you can choose from ranging from orcs to spiders and wargs. The Ettinmoors are set up like a huge version of Arathi Basin that runs 24 hours a day. You can enter the ettinmoors with your good and just quest and farm ores, wood and hides like any other area but with the lingering fear of a cloaked warg pack coming out of the shadows and killing you. As good or bad, you can also try to take objectives and complete PvP oriented quests. It seems like a lot of fun but its something that mostly only the high level characters do when they are between raids or done with their reputation and trait grinds. You get ranks for the number of kills and you can buy items with Valor Tokens which you get from quests there. It is something I eventually plan to do but I'm just too occupied at the moment.

    Again, if any of you guys want to play it, I can give out 30-day free trials. If you ever decide to buy the game, its just $10 per month and updates are rather frequent.
     
  7. Jakeman

    Jakeman MSC Founder and Donator

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2000
    Messages:
    25,758
    Likes Received:
    27
    Market Rating:
    16
    I am a hardcore player, not a casual player. I handle the hardcore nature of the game extremely well. My point is how poorly other people handle it which has resulted in a very hostile game. The cancer has metastasized to almost all aspects of the game and now there is very little healthy tissue left. It's no fun.

    I don't do sour grapes, sorry. You would be hard pressed to find any tears coming from me.

    I am attacking the player base in general, not specific people. If my arguments describe your own player experience then you may take it as constructive feedback or offer a counterargument. If you are mad at the game or you harbor any other negative emotions about your wow experience then you probably don't handle the game very well and are part of the problem I have described.
     
  8. Lurk

    Lurk Peasant and Donator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2000
    Messages:
    2,586
    Likes Received:
    47
    Market Rating:
    0
    Methinks you spend too much time on the Hyjal forums. They are not representative of the realm or game as a whole, much as the mage class forums are not representative of the class as a whole. Those forums are a magnet for trolls and whiners. People with no complaints or hostility (the majority) don't go there, because they have no reason to.

    To me, it sounds like you yourself are not enjoying the experience very much. You dislike the hardcore nature of the game yet freely admit you take part in it.

    Speaking strictly for myself: I don't consider myself hardcore, nor do I consider hardcore to be synonymous with raider. I raid 2-3 nights a week, 3 hours a night, and am happy with my progression. Gruul is on farm, Mag is close to dying. We are entering SSC/TK now, our goal is to complete both before WotLK. If we achieve that, great. If not, great. On off nights, I may farm or run a heroic or do a little PvP, and sometimes (gasp!) not play at all. All depends on my mood.

    Progression in this game is less a matter of the time you put in, and more a matter of how that time is spent. Guilds who think that progression is a matter of brute force are usually the ones that burn out the fastest.
     
  9. Jakeman

    Jakeman MSC Founder and Donator

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2000
    Messages:
    25,758
    Likes Received:
    27
    Market Rating:
    16
    I dislike what it does to people, but I enjoy the game itself. If you want to troll it then you can argue that I dislike the game because I dislike what it does to people, but that wouldn't be my first choice.

    Enough with these personal tangents. Everyone here can agree that lots of people don't handle this game well. I am saying those people negatively affect the atmosphere of the game. This is a fairly obvious and agreeable observation. Do you disagree?
     
  10. Lurk

    Lurk Peasant and Donator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2000
    Messages:
    2,586
    Likes Received:
    47
    Market Rating:
    0
    Maybe, but there are a lot of people who play the game well. I choose to hang out with them and avoid the negative nancies. Which is why I avoid the Hyjal forums as much as possible.
     
  11. Jakeman

    Jakeman MSC Founder and Donator

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2000
    Messages:
    25,758
    Likes Received:
    27
    Market Rating:
    16
    I guess it depends on the individual. I find it impossible to avoid the nancies because I'm such a socialite in-game. I can't make public conversation without some one attacking me.
     
  12. Lurk

    Lurk Peasant and Donator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2000
    Messages:
    2,586
    Likes Received:
    47
    Market Rating:
    0
    I am a socialite too, just not in public channels.
     
  13. Calendryll

    Calendryll MSC Commander and Donator

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2004
    Messages:
    1,336
    Likes Received:
    52
    Market Rating:
    0
    Just thought I'd add something since Agar made this sound enticing. One of the players on the forum said this:

    "There is more to MMORPGs than just Raiding and PvP, although Blizzard would say differently. It seems to me that LOTRO is almost the perfect MMO for Roleplayers (yes, I play on Landroval), not to mention Crafters, which makes up for a lack of Raiding or classic PvP."

    While there are a "few" raids you can do this doesn't seem to be the point of the game in any sense. (There is also a 24 man max I think?) It also seems that there is new content added every 2 months?

    This was also said:

    "I'm glad LOTRO isn't a Raiding or PvP game like WoW, personally. I just came from WoW, and was looking for a game with a friendly community and balanced PvE gameplay, hopefully run by a company where Devs interact with the players more than Blizzard. LOTRO is that game, from what I have seen thus far."

    I think I might look into this. I have to come to the conclusion that I am definitely more of a "take your time, socialize, and have some fun" type of gamer. Also, I have always loved the LOTR storyline and history. Thanks for the info Agar.
     
  14. Jakeman

    Jakeman MSC Founder and Donator

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2000
    Messages:
    25,758
    Likes Received:
    27
    Market Rating:
    16
    Those direct lotr / wow comparisons make it sound pretty good. Maybe I will try it.
     
  15. Lurk

    Lurk Peasant and Donator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2000
    Messages:
    2,586
    Likes Received:
    47
    Market Rating:
    0
    HAY KEN I HAV UR STUFFZ N MONEEZ?
     
  16. Jakeman

    Jakeman MSC Founder and Donator

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2000
    Messages:
    25,758
    Likes Received:
    27
    Market Rating:
    16
    That is a mistake that everyone makes and regrets. I never give away my stuff when quitting a game, and I am not planning on quitting wow just yet.
     
  17. Lurk

    Lurk Peasant and Donator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2000
    Messages:
    2,586
    Likes Received:
    47
    Market Rating:
    0
    PLZ I RLY NEED MUNEE 4 MI EPIX MOUNT!!!1!!1

    WIL U RUN ME THRU GNOMURGEN 4 8G?
     
  18. ColdHeat

    ColdHeat MSC Footman

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2005
    Messages:
    73
    Likes Received:
    0
    Market Rating:
    0
    send me a code.. and a link to a download i would like to try it.
     
  19. Calendryll

    Calendryll MSC Commander and Donator

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2004
    Messages:
    1,336
    Likes Received:
    52
    Market Rating:
    0
    Same here. I'll have some catching up to do but I may start playing WoW again as well sometime in the future.
     
  20. Elbereth

    Elbereth MSC Commander and Donator

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2000
    Messages:
    3,356
    Likes Received:
    14
    Market Rating:
    0
    :nod:

    I did send much of Eis's cash to Elb before cancelling. :)

    Boo for no Mac LOTRO :(
     

Hitometer: 53,812,830 since 1995