LOTRO: Fallen city, fallen enthusiasm

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Welcome to Osgiliath, population to about half the entire army of Mordor, six allied NPCs, and me. The fallen city is undeniably a major set piece of the Gondor experience, although I can’t say that I was particularly looking forward to going in there. You can partially chalk that up to my general dislike of navigating cities in game, but in this case it’s also because picking my way through the ruins of a town under the perpetual gloom of cloud cover wasn’t my idea of a jaunty time.

Remember when we used to run pies in the Shire while rainbows winked at us overhead?

But the epic story said that I needed to head into Osgiliath, so into Osgiliath I went. And boy were my instincts correct: This is a nasty, nasty area. The mob density is outright ludicrous in places, with plenty of super-powered mobs roaming around in addition to camps of normal ones. In addition, the fallen rubble has made navigation a pain, as getting from point A to B might not be as straight-forward as it looks. Finally, the quest hub — a meager few good guys hiding in a sewer — doesn’t have a milestone or stable for easy return.

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I’ve spent a couple of miserable sessions making my way through this city, thinking dour thoughts about the developers during it. Okay, I’ll admit that thematically, it’s all spot-on. This city should be overrun and it would be silly if we could just charge in there like a one-man army and slaughter everyone. But just because it fits the setting doesn’t make it enjoyable to play in.

I actually pulled out my landscape soldier to provide some additional firepower so that I could get through these mobs in something like a normal clip. More than once I had to flee from elite roving adds that wandered into aggro radius. Let’s just say that Mordor’s cardio program is paying dividends, because these guys would sprint a good half-mile over jagged rubble with nary a pause.

Perhaps some of my disgruntlement is the fact that I’m not tracking the story as well as I have in the past. I’m here… for some reason. Looking for Faramir, I think? Making a blow for the good guys, trying to trip up foes so they don’t get to Minas Tirith sooner than they will. Mostly, I’m just eager to get out of here. I hate the feeling of being stuck in a zone that’s more work than pleasure to get through.

Maybe I need to buckle down, suck it up, and get through it in one marathon session. I have no idea how much longer I have, but if the story keeps me in here much longer, I might start to regret coming back to LOTRO for this catch-up plan.

OH! And happy birthday, LOTRO! Whining aside, it’s been a heck of a ride so far, and nine years is a great accomplishment for an MMO.

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2 thoughts on “LOTRO: Fallen city, fallen enthusiasm

  1. ZombiePirate April 22, 2016 / 10:51 am

    This seems pretty much a carbon copy about how I felt doing Desolace back in Vanilla WoW. Rather bleak zone compared to the zones before and after it.

  2. spagomat April 22, 2016 / 11:24 am

    I feel your pain… kinda. I found it challenging, and I decided to embrace it, this grueling ‘behind enemy lines’ feeling, and the difficulty that goes hand-in-hand with the concept. It was one of the first places I really felt out of my depth, which is thrilling, for a while at least.

    Moodwise, Osgiliath is like a preview of all of Middle Earth if Sauron wins, so it worked for me as the darkest possible endpoint to the despair across Rohan and Gondor, and as a pre-cursor and dark mirror to the great hope of Minas Tirith.

    But yeah, I wanted it to end sooner; I probably was too completionist for my own good. After I had learned my way around a bit, I started using my warhorse to fly past mobs, and my hobbit flop to make them go away if I took a wrong turn. Hopefully there’s a similar adaptation available to your race/class.

    Anyhow, it sounds like you mostly solo (as do I) but I’m happy to give you some help getting through the zone, just say the word.

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