Saturday, 15 July 2017

July: Month of the Hunter

This month is all about hunters in Middle Earth for me: I'm currently levelling three hunters through various parts of the game and really enjoying the class. I usually play blue spec because I like the mobility, but I've been having fun trying out the yellow spec traps and decoy lately too.

Level 100 Robinya (VIP) - West/Central Gondor

Robinya doesn't really like fighting, she likes collecting artifacts. Fortunately, her quests in West Gondor recently took her to Edhellond where there were corsairs running around and nearly trampling priceless old elven artifacts amongst the ruins, so she had no compunction about putting an end to them when necessary.


Then she went to Dol Amroth and met up with Jajax again, who told her about the corsairs down on the coast at Hashadîr, so she went to their camp and found some crates of artifacts and she wasn't going to let any corsair slavers or pillagers stand in her way of returning them to the library in Dol Amroth for further study. Then Jajax got kidnapped so she had to go rescue him from Abedec's Watch, and they had been stealing artifacts too, so she reclaimed them as well.

Robinya reached level 100 in Ethring, Ringló Vale in Central Gondor. It would be nice to get her to level 105 before the Mordor expansion launches, but I don't think I have enough time.

Mordor Expansion

I watched some streams of people playing the Mordor beta and saw that there is still a lot missing, placeholder text for quests, character appearances looking worse than before (fat faces with less expression, flat chests and big bellies), class skills needing balancing or fixing etc. so I figured the expansion was a still a little ways off - this is Mordor: I hope it will be really polished. Then we see the announcement for preorders and in the fine print it mentions the release date at the end of this month - July 31st. The fine print! <shakes head in disbelief> I love LOTRO but sometimes I despair over how the game is run.

For most MMOs, expansion release dates is a big deal and they usually give you a fair bit of notice to build hype and let people prepare for it. When I used to play WoW, I would arrange to take my holidays during the first week of a new expansion so I could play it non-stop and enjoy all the new content without interruptions (oh server crashes or major bugs were inconvenient but also bonds players who were there together as they commiserate and help each other on voice chat, in-game chat or forums).

This will be the first expansion in LOTRO since I joined, and I'd love to dedicate several days to it, but I won't even be there when the gates of Mordor open because I've already made other plans - visiting my family in New Zealand. Normally I would hope expansions launch on time and be complete (unlike Rift's latest expansion which was missing most of the advertised expansion content), but this time I hope the Mordor launch is delayed, for both selfish reasons and so they can make it the best it can be.

Level 35 Mystrandos (F2P) - Evendim


My free-to-play hunter Mystrandos is questing through Evendim, working on the Epic questline and saving up LOTRO points to unlock Angmar next.

I don't really enjoy the quests in Northcotton Farm - so much traipsing back and forth - but at least she got quite a bit of XP from it. She completed some Shire deeds by questing around Oatbarton and the Glassblower's Camp near Dwaling, so those LOTRO points will help. Now she's based at Tinnudir and I'm looking forward to visiting the ruins throughout Parth Aduial.

Level 1-20 Hunter

I actually levelled a hunter from 1-20 at the start of the month so that I could create a little kin for crafting alts and invite myself into it with two accounts and two instances of the game open at the same time. However, I was already level 10 before it hit me that I should have screen-shotted and documented her levelling for the Introducing X Class guides. Oops. Opportunity missed. Ah well, I'll just make another hunter and take notes this time. Never can have too many hunters right?