Monday, 14 July 2014

Scenic Tour: Moria

Myndariel was both excited and dreading entering Moria. She can't stand being in the dark and gloomy underground for long, as she learnt in the Goblin Mines of the Misty Mountains. But she was also curious to explore the ancient Dwarven empire, and eager to reach Lothlórien on the other side.

The dwarven architecture in Moria is amazing. The elves build structures of great beauty, but nothing on the sheer scale of the dwarven halls. The variety of environments within Moria was also surprising; from rugged caves to intricately carved stone faces overlooking bridges across deep chasms, from mining sites to gardens, from watery ruins to fiery vents to icy cliffs, and the lost libraries and forges and secret passageways ... there's a lot to see.

Unfortunately navigation is difficult with the huge sprawl, the many levels and the general lack of direct paths from A to B. You do start to find your way around and it feels like a mini-achievement to travel between some places without the aid of a stable-master and a sure-footed goat.

Some tips for people new to Moria:

  1. Complete the quests in Durin's Threshold and Lamâb-dûm to get a quest that sends you to Dolven-view and rewards you with a free goat mount. It only travels at 32% but with no horses allowed it's better than running everywhere.
  2. Find the Twenty-first Hall as soon as you can because that has all the facilities and fast-travel to many areas of Moria.
  3. If you want a faster goat or you're a hunter/warden and want to swift-travel to the Twenty-first Hall, you need rep with the Iron Garrison Miners. It's easy to get rep with the Iron Garrison Guards by doing quests and deeds, so save your Guards rep tokens that drop off mobs and take them to the Iron Garrison Miners vendor who can barter them for Miners rep tokens.
Cave tunnels lit by glowing crystals
The Waterworks
The Redhorn Lodes
Tharâkh Bazân (also known as Durin's Garden)
The balrog of Moria, Durin's Bane

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