Even with the beacons lit and Sauron doing Saurony things elsewhere, Western Gondor doesn’t feel as if it’s under imminent danger. The devs try to set up conflict with the tag-team duo of the ruthless dead and the corsairs, but bad pirates? I’ve seen so much worse in my journey so far. Corsairs are almost quaint. Fun to kill, tho.
There was a bunch of quests that sent me into a corsair camp to kill, loot, and burn things, which kind of makes me an anti-corsair corsair. I was tasked with lighting up these guard towers, which was all fine except that people were in them and started screaming when the fire reached them. That was a bit gruesome for LOTRO.
Update 14 did give players a few new options for group content, with fellowship versions of the epic story and the area of Tarlang’s Crown. TC is a group-only area that’s quite reminiscent of the Great River’s Limlight Gorge, with plenty of dailies to tempt groups of players into the place. Sure, it’s not a new instance or skirmish, but I’ve seen TC rise in popularity as level-capped players look for fun things to do together.
The other night our kinship put out a call for Tarlang’s Crown, so I decided to tag along to see what all of the fuss was about. It’s a strip of road between the river and mountain that has several camps and plenty of both corsairs and ruthless dead to kill (not to mention the odd troll). Even though they were considerably tougher mobs, we had a raid going that could handle them without much difficulties. I found it interesting that our raid had 50% hunters, a Rune-keeper, a Minstrel, a Burglar (I think), and two Wardens, but I was the only Cappy.
This sort of group content is my favorite. It’s low-stress, since it’s mostly fighting without worrying about tight raid boss patterns or pinpoint healing. I enjoyed throwing out as many buffs and heals as possible, and I even got the heroic opportunity to rez someone in the middle of combat. I don’t think I’ll ever finish up that class deed, but it was cool to actually get to use that skill for once.
One of our kinnies had a swan pet, which kept following us around and providing us with opportunities to discuss how it was probably a corsair spy and was plotting our downfall. I’m ashamed to admit that I don’t have a vanity pet in LOTRO yet. I should look into that.
The whole TC run got me most of the way from 99 to 100, and I finally hit triple digits by wrapping up a few solo quests. Even with that under my belt, I have plenty of quests left to do and about half of the new epic story unfinished.