The Lord of the Rings OnlineWelcome to J.R.R. Tolkien's creation
It Makes Sense
The fantasy universe conceived by J.R.R. Tolkien known as 'Middle Earth' is heavily influential in most modern fantasy-influenced stuff. Did you know the mines of Moria was the dungeon crawl before there were dungeon crawls? So it seems pretty natural that this work of fictional gold would eventually make its way into the massively multiplayer online realm. The guys at Turbine (Asheron's Call, AC2, D&DO) have done a great job translating the immaculate world of Tolkien's creation and presenting Windows PC users with a massively multiplayer Middle Earth. They released Lord of the Rings Online: Shadows of Angmar in April 2007 and have since released the two major expansions: Mines of Moria and Siege of Mirkwood. They have also opened up the game to the whole wide world by not requiring a subscription to play, those interested can download and play the game for free, but have to purchase additional content from a cash shop. The option to buy a subscription still exists For their efforts Turbine has earned the following Reader's Choice Awards from MMORPG.com: [Best Overall Game] of 2008, [Best Expansion Pack] of 2008, and [Favorite MMO Studio] of 2008
. Quite impressive given the stiff competition.There Is Stuff
This is a casual, quest-driven MMO that is fine for solo-play but more fun with friends. Built-in voice chat for you social butterflies out there and DX11 graphics that blow plenty of other games out of the water - water that is inferior to what you will see in Middle Earth when you start playing, trust me. Everything you could want exists in this game in some form or another: instances, quests, raiding, player housing, kinships, crafting, PVP and legendary weapons you can customize. The player vs. player combat is given a separate zone to avoid interrupting or impeding on casual play while allowing those with a competitive edge a chance to get their kill on.
Read on for a description of the main features of LOTRO:
Lord of the Rings Online sets itself apart from other games in the genre with quest lines called [Books]
which contain solo and group quests that tend to culminate in wonderfully executed story-driven instances. Each patch brings with it content rife with themes and recurring characters that really help to flesh out the lore-based experience Turbine is going for. This occurs approximately every three months. All of these quests are free up until you hit the door of Moria, which won't open until you purchase the expansion Mines of Moria. The same goes for Mirkwood.
or just fashion, Turbine has given us cosmetic outfits so that you may customize your appearance to your liking without sacrificing the benefits of top-quality gear. The unofficial Penny Arcade server for U.S. players -Landroval- is also the unofficial roleplaying server - allowing all who have wished to roleplay within the realm of Frodo, Legolas, and Aragorn the ability to do so without worrying about too much 'LOL' and 'BRB' cluttering chat. It helps that most of the users on this server are mature, nice, and helpful, providing for a wonderful RP experience. There's room in your character panel for your character's biography as well as a system for establishing generations and families. If any of that sounds appealing to you, be sure to stop in to the Prancing Pony in Bree, a common gathering place for roleplayers in Middle Earth.
LOTRO uses instanced neighborhoods to keep things compact for [Player Housing]
. Your character can buy a house that is shared amongst all other characters on your account so long as they share the same server. Regular houses hold one extra chest and room for decorations while deluxe houses hold two extra chests and even more room for decorating. Kinships that reach a high enough lifespan can purchase a kinship house that comes with not one, not two, but three chests for all your storage needs. With use of travel rations you can quickly port to your house or your kinship house.
There are times during combat where you can shatter your enemy's defences and perform a [Fellowship Manuever]. This happens due to a special attack from a burglar or guardian, or by random luck. When it happens you will see a manuever wheel with four buttons. [RED]
indicates instant damage, [YELLOW]
is strong damage over time, [GREEN]
means restoring health and [BLUE]
brings back some power. You can simply press the button you need as an individual or coordinate as a team to pull off certain combinations that do much more. More information can be found here.
No matter how hopeless things may be, there is always [Music]
. LOTRO has harps, horns, drums, bagpipes, cowbells, and more. Music can be performed manually by note or with convenient ABC files and other players can hear you play. If you're in a fellowship, you can sync up with them to play separate instruments. Or if you're just passing by you can join in and improvise, though it's polite to ask first. This helpful link explains it rather well.
In the spoiler is a description by a cheerful chap who takes great joy in blowing on flutes:
Summary of the .abc music system and what it can do for you:
The .abc system allows you to add .abc files to your MyDocuments/Lord of the Rings Online/Music folder, and play them in-game.There are several ways to get your slimy little meathooks on these so-called ".abc files":
-Transcribe your own. Unfortunately you'll have to look elsewhere for information on this method, seeing as I don't know jack shit about manually transcribing .abc files.
Though if anyone who reads this has helpful information, I'll be glad to edit this OP to include it.
-Download 'em! There are several websites dedicated to providing .abc files for use in LOTRO. The best of which is TheFatLute.com
. Not only does this site have an awesome name, but also a metrick fuckton of .abc files just ripe for the pickin'. Simply save the file to the folder specified above, and you're ready to go.
-Convert them from MIDI files. This is my personal favorite method. If you can find a MIDI of a song you want to play in-game, all you have to do is save it to your hard drive and use a program such as [url=http://lotro.acasylum.com/midi/LotRO
MIDI Player[/url] to convert it to .abc format. This marvelous little piece of software is nothing short of genius. It's user-friendly, easy to figure out, and it bloody works. Be sure to keep the MIDI preview box checked at all times, otherwise it'll attempt to play the song in-game. From there, just tinker around with which instrument channels you want to remain in the .abc file (drums are turned off by default when you import a MIDI, seeing as they wreak havoc when played on a lute or somesuch.) When you're satisfied with how your song sounds, just save the converted .abc in your LOTRO Music folder as previously specified, and you're golden.
Good places to find MIDI files include (naturally) [url=http://www.google.comGoogle[/url]
, and MidiDB
, along with many others.But...but...how do I *play* them?!
I'm glad you asked.
First, you have to own an instrument. If I really *had* to tell you this part, maybe you should go back to the World of EverHammer or whatever you were playing before you realized you were playing the wrong game and decided to rightfully join the LOTRO community.
Instruments can be purchased from Bards, which are present in damn near all the towns in the game. They're represented on your map/radar as an icon of a lute. Note: You *can* learn more instruments than what are initially available to you. Simply ask a Minstrel of decent level to teach you. They can mentor almost every instrument in the game.
Once you have acquired your instrument(s) of choice, equip one and enter music mode. Do this by typing "/music" in the chat box.
From there, you can do one of two things:
-If you know which song you want to play, simply type "/play songname". Note that you will need to know exactly how the name of the .abc file is formatted in order for this to work.
-If you want to see all the .abc files you have in your music folder, type "/playlist" and it will bring up a list of all the songs available to you. Once you've picked your song, once again type "/play songname", and enjoy the music!
Do keep in mind that you will not be able to move without interrupting the song until it is over. You also won't be able to use most of your keyboard until the song has finished. If you need to type during a song, use the mouse to click the chat box. I figured this one out the hard way. Also, if you need to reply to someone sending you a tell, but you're still playing a song, type "/r" in the chat box. Once you hit the space bar after typing "/r", you will be able to type your reply message.
The possibilities are endless, so if you're still wasting your time crafting, questing, or leveling up in any way, knock that shit off and do something productive like playing music by the fire at the Prancing Pony!
Example song: My Name is Jonas by Weezer
Moving on: PVP, this is called [Monster Play]
and it is very much what it sounds like. Allow me to explain: At level 10, players are given the option from their Character Selection screens to choose to play a Monster in that specific zone. Higher-level Elves, Dwarves, Hobbits and Men have a special area to slay Orcs, Spiders, and other 'evil' races played by real people. The success of those fighting for good can effect the rest of the players on that particular server by giving a buff such as +5% XP Gain - and that is the most PVP will effect you if you choose to steer clear.
This sums up the main features of LOTRO. Below the classes, crafting and character improvement/customization is explained in painstaking detail, but lets look at some hobbits on vacation first.The Race Card[Hobbits] [Men] [Dwarves] [Elves]The Race of Hobbits
Happiest when enjoying a simple life with six square meals a day, Hobbits are solid and dependable when called to action.
The Race of Men
Hobbit Courage - Improved Fear Resistance (+1.0%).
Hobbit Toughness - Improved Vitality (+15).
Rapid Recovery - Improved out of combat Morale Regeneration (+1.0).
Resist Corruption - Improved Shadow Mitigation (+1.0%).
Small Size - Reduced Might (-8).
[Burglar] [Guardian] [Hunter] [Minstrel] [Warden]
Not as long-lived as Elves, sturdy as Dwarves, or resilient as Hobbits, Men are renowned for their courage and resourcefulness.
The Race of Dwarves
Diminishing of Mankind - Decreased Will (-8).
Easily Inspired - Increased Morale Restoration.
Gift of Men - Improved Fate (+15).
Strong Men - Improved Might (+15).
[Burglar] [Captain] [Champion] [Guardian] [Hunter] [Lore-master] [Minstrel] [Warden]
Dwellers of stone and miners of metal, the Dwarves are a doughty folk, resistant to the corruption of the Enemy -- but not to greed.
The Race of Elves
Lost Dwarf-Kingdoms - Reduced Fate (-8).
Stocky - Reduced Agility (-8).
Sturdiness - Increased Might (+15) and Vitality (+10), improved Common Damage mitigation (+1.0%).
Unwearying in Battle - Morale/Power regeneration (+0.5 each) in combat, reduced out of combat (-1 m, -0.5 p).
[Champion] [Guardian] [Hunter] [Minstrel] [Rune-Keeper]
Long ago, the Elves, also known as the Fair Folk, welcomed the younger races of Middle-earth and allied with them when the need was great, but centuries of war, betrayal, and hardship have made them fiercely protective of their seclusion. Tall and strong, fair and graceful, Elves have keen senses and a deep affinity for the beauty of the natural world.
Class[Burglar] [Captain] [Champion] [Guardian] [Hunter] [Lore-master] [Minstrel] [Rune-keeper] [Warden]
Agility of the Woods - Improved Agility (+15).
Fading of the Firstborn - Reduced Fate (-8).
Sorrow of the Firstborn - Reduced Morale (-20) and Out of Combat Morale Regeneration (-1.0).
Suffer no Illness - Improved resistance to Disease (+1.0%)and Poison (+1.0%).
[Champion] [Guardian] [Hunter] [Lore-master] [Minstrel] [Warden] [Rune-keeper]
Your Legacy Awaits [traits] [deeds] [hope and despair]
(de-buffer / conjunction starter) is a master of stealth and misdirection. Burglars are able to confound foes with a variety of clever and debilitating tricks. They also excel at attacking from the shadows, allowing them to take enemies by surprise.
The burglar role is to rob monsters of the ability to deal damage and attack at full strength. As the only class that can reliably create conjunction opportunities (high-yield group-based attacks also known as Fellowship Manuevers), their role in groups is a coveted one.The Captain
(buffer / pets) is a masterful leader, a commanding presence who strengthens allies, but is also skilled in the use of arms. Their battle cries strike fear into the hearts of their enemies, while their allies rally to their banners of war.
The armoured Captain possesses some of the most potent enhancements to the heroes of Middle-earth, this makes the Captain a key member of any fellowship. The Captain's ability to summon a Herald pet at later levels, plus the ability to bring fallen heroes back into the fight, make it a desired group class. The masters of buffing and wipe prevention, Captains can eventually absorb their entire group damage for a short period without succumbing to defeat.The Champion
(AOE/DPS) is the consummate warrior, unrelenting in battle. His fervour allows him to make increasingly powerful attacks. The Champion excels at melee combat and can absorb punishment with his Heavy Armour.
The Champion trades survivability for the ability to deal explosive amounts of damage to multiple foes. Although a fully armoured class when not in fervour mode, it is when Champions enter this state that they deal out the greatest damage, both to single and multiple foes.The Guardian
(tank) is a protector of the weak and defender of those in need. He is capable of withstanding mighty blows and retaliating in kind. The true Guardian stands to the forefront of battle, shielding his allies from the blows of their enemies.
The Guardian is the archetype of the tank, clad in heavy armour and with a large number of skills that make it impossible for enemies to ignore them.The Hunter
(ranged nuker) is a master of field and forest, unmatched with the bow. Hunters use their survival skills to guide their companions and lay traps for their enemies. The Hunters are at their strongest when attacking from a distance, but they are able to defend themselves in melee combat, when needed.
The Hunter is proficient at dealing out damage to single foes at both range and melee. When Hunters are at range, they can unleash devastating arrow shots that do high damage to single targets. When the lone enemy manages to close into melee range, the Hunter is well-equipped to deal the finishing blow with some melee skills. Hunters can also port the party to various camps becoming the taxi drivers of Middle Earth.The Lore-master
(crowd control / support / pets) is a seeker of knowledge and a guardian of wisdom. He wields ancient secrets and lore to confound his foes and aid his friends, protecting them against the dark powers of the Enemy. He calls down lightning, uses water to make foes stick in the mud, or throws a fireball made from a chemical concoction.
Lore-masters are the masters of crowd-control, with the ability to trap creatures and keep them from hurting their allies. They have many skills that invoke the natural world of Middle-earth but it is draining on the will thus costing them morale to fuel some of these powerful skills. Because of this, they must rely on their pets to supplement their ability to take damage. Loremasters can also replenish the power of their friends, bring them back to life and make them immume to stuns.The Minstrel
(healer) is the heart of a fellowship, a herald of hope and renewal. He uses his knowledge of ancient songs and lore to ward against the forces of darkness and bring relief to his companions.
The Minstrel is the master of maintaining the survivability of the heroes of Middle-earth. Minstrels also are able to deal damage to their foes by using their damaging light-based attacks in the forms of songs of power. They have the nifty ability to remove dread from defeated allies as well.The following two classes are only available if you own or bought Mines of MoriaThe Rune-Keeper
(nuker / healer) is a mystical linguist and master of true names. Rune-keepers can heal in one battle and hurl destructive magic in the next using an innovative attunement system.
In lore terms, the Rune-keeper marks the game's first true "magic user." The Lore-master class had his or her powers explained as the harnessing of the traditional powers of nature. The Rune-keeper, on the other hand, actually taps into the primal physics-altering powers of creation. It's the same kind of power (though to a far, far lesser degree) as that tapped into by powerful elves like Galadriel (who serves as the model for the class).The Warden
(tank) is armed with spear and shield and uses a gambit system to fire off powerful combo attacks at the front lines. Unlike other classes, which have to wait for opportunities, the warden creates his own openings and then capitalizes on them.
Wardens are limited to medium armour so that they can travel swiftly and silently to defend those they protect from threats. Wardens depend on their Determination for protection rather than heavy shields and armor. Wardens all have some military training and have mastered a style of combat that uses combinations of basic attacks to create masterful Gambits.
Aside from selecting your character's race, gender, class, and appearance, [Traits] are how you customize your hero. As you progress your character he or she will gain trait slots with which to assign virtues, racial traits, class traits and Legendary traits. These serve to give you new abilities or improve the abilities you already have.
Get a job [crafting] [vocations]
LOTRO's advancement system comes with a secondary form of quests known as [Deeds]. These do not count as regular quests and are not considered a primary source of experience for gaining levels, but often are achieved regardless of intention. (Deeds ask that you kill a certain number of a type of enemy, travel to a certain set of locations, do a certain area's quests, or use a certain attack several times.) What they lack in XP they make up for in building your character's individuality. Certain deeds only reward you with a title, the aesthetic attachment to your floating name (such as Vegetarian, if you eat a selection of vegetarian dishes). However, other deeds may give you new traits or level up current traits. To assign new traits, visit your local bard. Easiest to find is the bard in Bree's Prancing Pony.
It is not enough that you raise your blade to fight the evil of Sauron, you must have the will to swing it without fear. Lord of the Rings Online takes from the lore a heavy emphasis on [Hope and Despair] allowing you to gain hope from the presence of good NPCs and despair from the wicked. Despair can build unless you have armour or items laden with hope. You will gain despair from dying, encountering overwhelming evils, or traversing the worst of places - too much despair and your morale/power will begin to drain. Soon, the fiery, lidless eye sees you from where your mini-map ought to be. And then, you will cower in fear and ultimately render yourself vulnerable. In this instance, hope is your anti-drug.
Armourer [Prospector] [Metalsmith] [Tailor]
An Armourer knows that all that stands between a good soul and the grave is often a thin sheet of metal.
Armourers can create a wide variety of armour, but they specialize in heavy armour and shields. Capable miners and smelters, they can procure and prepare the metal they need. While they can craft clothes and leather armour, they will need to trade for the tanned hides required. This is an excellent choice of trade for one who relies on heavy armour and shields.
Armsman [Prospector] [Weaponsmith] [Woodworker]
An Armsman knows the many secrets of weaponry, and can craft almost any weapon imaginable.
Armsmen are capable of crafting any weapon you might ever need, so it's an excellent choice for anyone who relies on a blade. An Armsman is proficient in mining and smelting, but will need to trade for wood with which to make bows, spears, and the like.
Explorer [Prospector] [Forester] [Tailor]
These canny travellers know much of the lands of Middle-Earth and its resources.
An Explorer can live off the land, crafting leather armour and clothing while gathering any resource they come across. Explorer is an excellent choice for anyone who wears Light or Medium armour, or wants to specialize in resource gathering. Do you want to learn this trade?
Historian [Scholar] [Farmer] [Weaponsmith]
Historians are the caretakers of lore and legend that the forces of light dare not forget.
Historians are unique in that they have access to the Scholarly arts, allowing them to research ancient lore and use their discoveries to the advantage of their fellows. In addition, a Historian has the more practical talents of cultivating land, and forging the blades that are so often spoken of in the histories they study.
Tinker [Prospector] [Jeweller] [Cook]
Fascinated by things intricate and beautiful, the Tinker seeks to create great things.
A Tinker's greatest skill is that of jewelcraft, and a skilled Tinker can create baubles of both beauty and utility. A Tinker can harvest the precious metals and stones he needs for his work, and given the long hours this trade requires, it is good that a Tinker is a fair hand at preparing a hearty meal.
Woodsman [Woodworker] [Forester] [Farmer]
A Woodsman is trained to survive off the land, and make weapons from natural materials.
Woodsmen are the foremost bowyers in Middle-earth, and are capable of crafting fine weapons from wood, as well as gathering and treating the raw wood they need. Their knowledge of plants and nature also makes them natural Farmers. Woodsman is an excellent choice for anyone who wants to create their own mighty bows.
Yeoman [Cook] [Farmer] [Tailor]
Hard-working and knowledgeable about the land, a Yeoman is well versed in farming, cooking, and forestry.
Yeomen are the salt of the earth, tilling soil and preparing food with natural skill. They are also able to create clothes and leather armours, though they need to trade their produce for the hides required.
Right, that concludes a rundown of the most important information. Lets look at the map for a second before we move on to information about F2P and kinships and links to useful stuff you might enjoy.
Free to Play?
You can head over to www.lotro.com
right now and download the game and play it for free. Free up to a point: the first few zones of the game are completely accessible, but of the rest of the world only the Epic Quests are available. Additional quests have to be bought in the cash shop. The cash shop also contains many other items, ranging from vanity items to useful items. A few are quite vital, such as unlocking all your traits. The moment you purchase something from the shop you are moved from "Free Player" to "Premium Member". Your other option is to buy a subscription, at $10/month this is pretty cheap and gives you access to all zones up to Eregion, but the moment your subscription lapses the quests and other features will become unavailable to you again. The next zones will have to bought, because these were originally expansion packs. A subscriber is called a VIP. The following table shows what restriction there are:
Are you still confused? You probably are, it seems everyone is confused. So lets just ask HTown, he's pretty smart, or so his mom told me.
LOTRO is going Free 2 Play this fall, which means there are now going to be three classes of LOTRO customers: Free players, Premium players, and VIP Players.FREE PLAYERS
- A Free player is someone who just plays for free, period. They have very limited access to things like character and inventory slots, money, and quests. They can only do quests in the low-level areas. (Not the tutorial stuff, but Bree-Land the Shire or Ered Luin. No Angmar, no Forochel, no Evendim, etc.) All of these things will be purchasable with Turbine points, which you can either buy or earn through gameplay
. Also all tech support has to be done by yourself from what you can find on the LOTRO site.PREMIUM PLAYER
- If a free player, at any point, decides to buy
any Turbine points, to use on things like a quest pack or a cosmetic item or something, they are upgraded to Premium status. If you are a former subscriber
to LOTRO, you are a premium player. Basically, if you have put any money into the LOTRO sytem at any point in your life, you are a premium player. This is, as far as I can tell, permanent
. It increases the stuff the player has access to, like character slots, an increased gold cap, and full customer support up to 30 days from the last time you bought Turbine points. You can move up to VIP status by paying the normal monthly fee.VIP PLAYER
- If you paid for a lifetime subscription, or if you currently pay a monthly fee, you are a VIP Player. You get everything you currently get, with the possible exception of losing one or two character slots per server, and a little bit extra. VIP players are the only ones with access to PvP and destiny point spending, get 20 wardrobe slots (does that mean 20 costumes you can use?) and a priority login over all those cheap jokers.
Also it says you can have "unlimited crafting guilds?" Does that mean a woodworker can also be a metalworker?
You can also choose to stop paying your monthly fee and drop down to Premium level. You won't lose any items, but anything in a slot you should no longer have access to will be remove-only, meaning you can put take it out of the slot and put it somewhere, but you won't be able to put anything else in that slot afterwards. If you had a lifetime subscription, you are VIP forever.EXPANSIONS
- Expansions work just like they always did. If you want access to legendary items and the Moria quests, you need to have purchased the Moria expansion. If you want access to the Mirkwood stuff, you need to have purchased the Mirkwood expansion. You can be a Premium level player in Moria, if you have purchased Mines of Moria. You can be a VIP player without access to Mirkwood, if you haven't bought Siege of Mirkwood. YOU HAVE TO OWN MINES OF MORIA TO BE A RUNE-KEEPER OR WARDEN. You have to own Moria to get to level 60, and Mirkwood to get to level 65. I do not know if the expansions will be purchasable with Turbine points. You have to own the expansions to access Tier 6 crafting.
Free Players, you can play for free and eventually use your earned
Turbine points to access new content.
Premium Players, you can use your purchased
Turbine points to access new content, and get more stuff than the free players.
VIP Players, you get to see everything and get the best stuff, and you get free Turbine points to use in the store.
In other words, don't panic.
Thank you HTown, I'm proud of you. So how does one play with such swell dudes as HTown and many others?US Kinship
Some of the American players are together on Landroval
Landroval is a RP server, which means that there's a big chance other players will behave oddly whilst trying to fit in in Middle Earth. Enjoy the show.
[Contact Hjartad, or join the PA chat channel in-game to join The Barrovian Society.]
-To join the PA chat channel, simply type "/joinchannel PennyArcade wang" in your chat box.
-To type in the PA chat channel, switch to the channel User Chat 1 (assuming you don't have another custom filter enabled). To switch to User Chat 1, simply precede your message with "/1".
-To type in the kinship channel once you've joined The Barrovian Society (or any other kin, for that matter), precede your message with "/k". All without the quotes of course.
NOTE: You must finish all the quests labeled "INTRO" before you are able to join a kinship.EU Kinship?
Tough shit, not enough Old Worlders play this to justify a kinship. Yours truly is on Evernight.Useful Links and Shithttp://forums.lotro.com/
Up to date-ish map of the game world with quest locations etchttp://lotro.mmodb.com/
database with at least some information you can't find in gamehttp://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?t=279179
guide to radiance gear (needed for raiding)http://chordian.net/index.htm?tab=2
easy to use guide to rep vendors. It also contains preview images for all the cosmetic stuff on skirmish soldiers (hell yea)Add-Ons/Mods/LUA Scripts
This ain't no WoW. Although there's an in-game beta feature for limited LUA scripting, it is intentionally not as elaborate as that of WoW. Most people with the default UI and there's absolutely no DPS metres, gear level checks and other stuff. At the moment there's no useful site to download add-ons from, once something pops up I'll update this.Advanced tips & tricks
- ALT+left click to select the item, and CTRL+T to lock it. You should get small locked symbol in the lower left corner of the item icon. To unlock the item for selling, repeat ALT+left click and CTRL+T.