With LOTRO’s 5.2 patch today came the official start of the sporadic Buried Treasure in-game event. We got a brief peek at this event a month or so ago — and it’s been in the works for a very, very long time at this point — and I’m excited as always to see another non-combat event come into the game. Even if they’re ultimately frivolous in regards to advancement and character growth, they’re just plain fun and community-building as well. Plus, any chance to nab some cosmetic and housing items, and I’m there!
I spent the day constantly logged into LOTRO to build up my inventory of treasure hunting picks. The way the event works is that a field of dig sites opens up with each site ranging from crappy rewards (like a single treasure token) to great ones (the “large” sites with big chests are the ones everyone wants), and you just go and dig away. The only restriction is that you can only dig as many holes as you have picks, and each dig takes a pick away. So you can either do a pair of repeatable (every 15 minutes) quests and/or shell out money in the LOTRO store to speed it up. I don’t see any reason why someone would want to pay money for this unless one was incredibly impatient, as getting picks is fairly easy.
My basic method is just to stay logged into LOTRO but tabbed out with a timer on my phone that went off every 15 minutes. I tab in, take literally 10 seconds to get my 2 free picks, reset the timer, tab out and get other things done for 15 minutes. (The store-bought picks are ridiculously overpriced — 200 TP for 5 of them — and considering you can get 4 picks in the space of a couple minutes for free every 15 minutes, I don’t see why you’d fall for this.)
After several hours of that, I amassed somewhere around 40 picks and went nuts hunting. You can better your odds with dowsing rods (one-shot items that tell you the “strength” of a hole) or a trained cave-claw (one-shot critters that lead you to the nearest best dig site). So there is a little bit of strategy involved, but ultimately it’s a crap shoot.
I’m fairly pleased with the results so far. My Minstrel has collected 258 tokens and got lucky with two boxes that rewarded a Jeweler’s Helm (my “must have” cosmetic item that sort of looks like R2D2 from above) and a Dowsing emote. I’m planning on saving up around 500 or so before buying anything in case I get any more of the store items. If I can snag a cave-claw mask, the pet, and one or two of the housing items, I’ll be content.