Friday, 27 June 2014

Scenic Tour: Misty Mountains

The Misty Mountains were a nice change of scene and I enjoyed the weather aspects such as snowflakes drifting down or snowstorms that dropped visibility drastically. It made me want to huddle inside beside a nice warm fire, but the dwarves of the zone were tough and stood outside giving orders to eliminate the danger posed by the evil men taking up residence near Helegrod, the Dourhands near Gabilizan, and the goblins in and around Goblin-town.

The there were the giants of Giant Halls. After getting smashed the first couple of times Myndariel encountered them, she decided to use Sylvan Shadows to stealth past them and explore their kingdom. So much ore and wood and scholar artifacts, all hoarded away! Well she might have got a little greedy and unstealthy and tried to carry more than she should, so perhaps not surprisingly, when that giant came around the corner of the hill unexpectedly ... he wasn't happy to see her. SMASH!

Goblin-town was an amazing maze and exploring (i.e. fighting the way through the goblins and their allies) resulted in constantly overflowing bags full of loot and rep tokens. Eventually though, Myndariel got tired of being underground (she hates the dark) and decided braving snowstorms was preferable so she headed south to deal with fissure-worms and gauredain near Northtarn.

Snowy vista from Gloin's Camp
Hrimbarg, one of the dwarven outposts
Myndariel, dressed to blend in with the environment

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Special Event: Treasure Hunt, 19-23 June 2014

After first discovering the treasure hunting grounds while exploring Ered Luin, I have been looking forward to the treasure hunt. My little hobbit scholar Robinya (who spends most of her time at the library except during special events) eagerly took her pickaxe and started digging.

At first she didn't find much; a few tokens, an abandoned pickaxe, a moldy treasure hunter's pack. She took a meal break then went and spoke to Halthor Goldeneye about getting some more pickaxes. One of the other treasure hunters had a trained cave-claw who was hungry so she gathered some berries for it and they gave her some more tools for her own excavations.

She worked like this all night - hunt for a good dig-site, test it with a cave-claw or a dowsing gem if she had any, dig and hope, then when she ran out of tools she'd have a bite to eat and help the other treasure-hunters to get more tools.

Just before dawn, it finally happened. She hit a huge dig-site. She was on her last pickaxe and was about to start going "eeny-meeny-miney-mo" to pick a site, when she spotted an out-of-the-way dig-site and had A Feeling. You know, like you're holding the winning lottery ticket. Well, she dug and she dug, and she dug some more and finally reached the bottom and she found .... a pile of tokens, a rusty mining pick, and a treasure-laden pony.

The pony was very nice. She had been hoping to get the 1000 tokens to buy the special Harvest-brew Goat, but at the rate of 4 pickaxes per 15 minutes and 1-10 tokens per dig-site, it would have taken a long time. So she decided the pony was the jackpot and she'd done enough. She could go back to her books now.

But as she sat on her new mount and watched the sun rise over the chilly mountains, then turned and saw the dig-sites sparkling in the light, she had a crazy thought to get a couple more pickaxes and just dig randomly - who knows when she'd get another opportunity to be a treasure hunter?

On her second dig, she hit another huge dig-site. She couldn't believe it. She stood staring at the hole she had dug and almost couldn't dare to look in and see what she had found. It turned out to be rather disappointing - just a pile of tokens. She rubbed them together between her fingers and decided treasure-hunting wasn't a good investment so she'd spend what tokens she had and take the pony back to civilisation. She just needed something to show for her efforts, something she could write about in one of her books and maybe one day in a few hundred years or so, some elf might read about her adventures and think she was a hero.

One of the vendors at the base camp looked at her bag of tokens and listened to her request for a souvenir that would look like she'd been a great treasure hunter. The dwarf's eyes crinkled as he gave a deep belly-laugh and pulled an old battered box off the back of his wagon and started filling it with shiny rubbish left lying around after the hordes of hopeful treasure-hunters camped all over the hillside. He presented it to her with a wink and told her no-one would know the difference. She shrugged and strapped it on the back of her pony and headed back to her homestead near Bree.

The practice dig-sites

Sparkling dig-sites waiting to be mined

Professional treasure-hunters

Treasure Laden Pony


Scenic Tour: North Downs

Myndariel only visited North Downs briefly as she got acquainted with the Jeweller's Guild and completed the epic quests there. However, the story-line, abundance of tier 3 crafting materials and crafting facilities has made it a favourite zone for leveling my other characters.

Rolling hills and sparse forest cover much of the zone

Looking across Nen Harn to Bree-land

The entrance to Trestlebridge



Monday, 23 June 2014

Scenic Tour: Trollshaws

The Trollshaws are beautiful in their perpetual autumn colours and Rivendell really does feel like a peaceful sanctuary from the world. There are so many interesting places tucked away amongst the hills and valleys and so much history has taken place here.

It was awesome meeting up with members of the Fellowship and doing tasks to help them get ready for their journey. I really like how as characters, our story interacts with the famous story and although they're the main heroes and seeing them is like meeting celebrities, we can be heroic too in our own way. It's not that they couldn't have completed their mission without us, but it's nice when they acknowledge us in game as respected allies fighting the same fight against Sauron and the Witch-king and their hordes of minions.

The road through the Trollshaws
Last Homely House, home of Elrond Halfelven
The Stone-trolls that Bilbo Baggins met
Tâl Bruinen
Imlad Gelair, accessed by a secret passage behind the Falls of Imladris

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Scenic Tour: Lone-lands

Myndariel took her time in the Lone-lands, helping clear out the half-orcs, goblins, wargs, spiders, trolls and wights. The Eglain were so grateful they gave her a nice a horse. Unfortunately, after spending so much time there, none of my other characters want to do it all again, so they gallop off to North Downs as soon as they can.

Nevertheless, there are some great places in the Lone-lands. Weathertop - one day I will have to go to the concert held there. Iorvinas - Myndariel had fun exploring through there and got lots of useful gear and crafting materials from the dwarves and orcs (who won't be needing them any more). Harloeg - the wetlands are so beautiful at sunset and it was nice to see a forest (even if it was filled with trolls) when so much of the zone is dusty and dry.

It was interesting meeting Radagast the Brown in Agamaur too, and as a Lore-master, earning a Tome of the Hare from completing the Friend of the Wild quest series for him to get my own non-combat pet.

The Forsaken Inn

The Earth-kin camp at Tornstones

Harloeg at sunset

The Red Pass

The dry hills

Prized Eglan-steed from becoming Kindred with the Eglain

Friday, 20 June 2014

Scenic Tour: Bree-land

Bree, the place where everyone converges. Myndariel has spent a lot of time there, particularly near the crafting hall. There's always something happening there - a bard entertaining the crowd with beautiful music, a pair of lovers flirting in the doorway, competitor crafters pretending to insult each other's work and start a fight, then laughing over it together with a mug of ale.

Bree-land itself is fertile plains, forests and gently rolling hills. It is green fields, blue lakes, purple flowers, orange sunsets. It is little towns and settlements of people who persevere through adversity, and the ruins dotted around the landscape speak of a long history of adversity.

It's a great place to call home, especially during the early levels of LOTRO.


Nen Harn

Ruins in the Brandy Hills

Staddle - one of the hobbit settlements

Fields of flowers at sunset

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Scenic Tour: Ered Luin

Myndariel's journey began in Ered Luin, an area with the snowy Blue Mountains in the north-west, home to the dwarven city Thorin's Halls, and forested foothills that provide timber for the elves and their building of ships to take them into the west near Celondim in the south on the River Lune.

Celondim, a beautiful elvish town

Gondamon, where dwarves and elves meet, not always on the best of terms

Thorin's Halls are nestled into the snowy mountains

Thorin's Halls greenhouse - a hidden gem near the Skirmish Camp

Wednesday, 18 June 2014


Hi. I've recently started playing Lord of the Rings Online - it would be fair to say that the Hobbit movies made me want to explore Middle Earth more. I'm loving it, especially the questing with its deep lore, and the scenery.

I've been collecting some screenshots that I'd like to share and I've noticed that there are not many up-to-date guides for classes or crafting, so while I admit I'm a newbie, perhaps I can help other newbies by sharing what I learn as I go.

Myndariel, my level 60 Lore-master and her pet.

My main character is a elven lore-master called Myndariel. She's currently working on completing the epic questline in the Mines of Moria and earning the favour of the Galadhrim in Lothlórien. She enjoys making beautiful jewelry and has recently discovered she hates being underground so makes frequent trips to get fresh air and see the trees, water and sky.

Garo arad vaer! (Have a good day!)