One good thing did come out of my botched LOTRO F2P experiment last weekend, and that’s the notion that I’d really like to try my hand at chasing deeds on a character. I remember when I first got into LOTRO in 2007 I was kind of awed by the whole deed system. It was achievements back before they were standard features in MMOs (WAR and WoW would bring them into vogue a year later, but titles like CoH did have them earlier on), and unlike most achievement systems, they often resulted in in-game rewards on top of the pat on the back. From titles to stat boosts to the occasional item to (now) cash shop currency, doing deeds felt like a toofer: you’re chasing fun achievements while earning something along the way. For the super-deed chaser, there’s even meta-deeds that offer awesome rewards.
My awe for the system gradually faded and when I returned to the game in 2010, I generally stopped paying attention to it. I’ve written plenty of words on how to best manipulate the deed system so that you can earn the virtues your character needs in as efficient a manner as possible, but I stopped chasing them for the sake of them.
But when I was investigating and tooling around with a F2P character, I realized just how many deeds I completely overlook all the time in an effort to level through the zones. I had never, for instance, done the Shire Brewmaster deed (which is a “hidden deed” that doesn’t show up AS a deed until you’ve finished it) until this past week, and I don’t think I’ve ever cleared a zone of deeds before. It seemed like a fun challenge. For kicks. And since I didn’t want to go back to all the previous zones with my Captain, I’d have to tackle it from the ground up with a normal (non-F2P) character.
So right after penning that previous post about the F2P path, I got my Warden out of deep storage and began the unfreezing process. At level 15, it wasn’t as though there was tons to remember about her, but she’s been in carbonite for at least a half year now if not longer, so there was some reacquainting to do. I’m glad I never deleted her, because on a whim I dumped a lot of TP into her: she has the uber Steed of Night mount, the full Agility and Vitality stat tome package, and many awesome crimson-themed outfits. I seriously love how she looks but I’ve always been intimidated by the Warden class, so that’s why she’s not gotten much play. I’ll be talking more about the Wardens in an upcoming column on Massively, however.
After getting her battle-ready, I took my Warden out for a spin and started chewing through Shire deeds like crazy. It’s kind of cool how this changes the way you approach a zone. It’s no longer just about quests and quest flow (although that’s part of it, since there are always deeds associated with quests), but about exploration, kills (and the grind that comes with the slayer deeds), and other odds and ends. Fortunately for my project, she’s already completed the mail run deed, the pie run deed, and three advanced slayer deeds. Thank you, Past Syp! Much obliged!
I anticipate overleveling most of the content since I’ll be mining the zones deeply, which actually works in my favor: I can kill quickly with a minimum of worry and the Warden can round up groups of mobs and take them out with ease. Aside from a feeling of accomplishment and doing something I’ve never done in the game before and getting the full range of Virtues, I’ll be earning a nice chunk of TP on the side which I’ll be saving up for a Might stat tome package.
Maybe it’s another futile project, but it’s got me quite excited and even with slayer deeds I’m having a lot of fun. I needed to get a handle on the Warden anyway.