Posted in Lord of the Rings Online

LOTRO: Beware the bear butts

One of the things that I hate in MMOs or other games is that feeling of getting bogged down or stuck in an undesirable location or section. You know that feeling? You’ve had this good momentum and then, bam, you’re struggling through a part that isn’t too interesting and you’re not making any traction. You log out in frustration and then find yourself not wanting to log back in for days or weeks after.

LOTRO does this to me every so often. It can have a good flow, but when confusing quest objectives, inhospitable terrain, or frustrating mobs conspire together, they can swamp me. This is where I found myself in Northern Mirkwood.

At first it was great, all pretty trees and peaceful forest, but what I didn’t realize was that there’s this whole region around Elf City that’s in a perpetual night, has a ton of mobs, has a river you can’t cross (at least not through the water), has quest objectives that are scattered all over the place, and the environment has some cliffs and a ton of nighttime fog. It’s not at all enjoyable or engaging to stumble around nearly blind in a forest not even knowing where you’re going, which is why I didn’t want to log in for a while.

But the poisoned foxes needed me, and so I came back. Actually, the best remedy for getting bogged down is to power through it. Log in, devote X amount of time, and just get things one one objective at a time. So that’s what I did recently. One small, silly step at a time, and gradually I started to gain traction once more. Quests started getting finished.

And I was absolutely delighted to find that once I got outside of the Dark Zone, everything got 100% more enjoyable and easier to do. Funny that happening when you can actually see.

Angry tree guys? Evil forest spirits? Not really sure what the Taurogrim are and I’m not going to Google it. I think they look pretty cool though. I don’t even mind this guy trying to rip off my skull, because at least we’re out in the sunlight and I know where I’m going.

The main goal of the night was to run a solo instance in which I was helping a Beorning shapeshifter find one of her traveling companions who had been lost deep in the wood.

Oh! So I should back up to the start of this night and say that I died three times in a row, very quickly. At first I thought I wasn’t paying attention, but no, I was getting *creamed.* Then I noticed I was missing skills. And then my brain — honed by years of actually covering MMO news — remembered that this game had a class balance update and my talent points got reset. So I had that to do as well.

I don’t feel like my blue line Lore-master got better, but rather that she is less effective than before. I certainly struggled hard during this solo instance as the mobs hit me like a truck and I had a hard time keeping them off of me if there was more than one or two.

Puddleglum photobombed this nature shot. Go back and gel your hair a bit more, you weirdo.

Anyway, I died in the middle of the instance (which, again, has just rarely ever happened to me in this game and I’m now taking a long, hard look at my spec to see if it’s to blame), and I didn’t have my free rez available. So I had to be sent back. All the way back. Like halfway across the zone. I think my brain started screaming right then, which was followed by my mouth ten seconds later.

It was a long, stupid ride back.

Fortunately, I did get the instance done, saved the traveler, and was rewarded with… about eight new quests to do more stuff for them. I know the devs love to rack up the quantity of quests, but could there also be good rewards for them too? It’s not as though XP and LI XP is that useful to me right now.

2 thoughts on “LOTRO: Beware the bear butts

  1. I have found if you get defeated and wait for the npc to get defeated you get ported to where she is to restart quest. It was a painful quest.

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