“Oh we knew you were rotting them. We just thought, hey, let’s wait a day or two. Or six. You were doing such a good job.”
Last week I wrapped up my adventures in Trollshaws, which was an experience of (literal) highs and lows. It’s a pretty enough zone and the quests are adequate, but very little of that narrative has ever gripped me. In addition, the constant going-up and going-down into the ford and Rivendell gets kind of tiring. I was just glad that my multiple milestones made it easy to jump across the map when I could use it.
It’s here and in Misty Mountains that we see how Turbine originally poured a whole lot of attention into the earlier zones and then had rather uneven “endgame” (40-50) areas. Just more difficult layouts with fewer quest hubs, stable masters, and routes.
As I was talking with a friend, we both remarked that how the progression server really has encouraged us to explore more than usual — and how we’ve been finding places that we’d never seen before even after a decade or so playing the game. LOTRO does have a lot of out-of-the-way spots that aren’t part of any quest chain, and it’s kind of delightful to find them.
For example, I’ve seemingly overlooked the healing room in the Last Homely House until this past week. Just must’ve never seen the door before. And it turned out to be this gorgeous room with lots of plants and light.
Also, I didn’t realize that a good portion of the Last Homely House’s roof just isn’t there in the main hall. As in, it’s simply open to the sky. Elf architecture does that a lot in this game, but I guess I never looked up.
With all of the cosmetics that I wanted from the reprise of the fall festival, I put a pin in that and moved on to the frosty Misty Mountains. As with many winter zones, I have a fondness for it, although perhaps not as much as LOTRO’s Forochel or Wildermore. It’s certainly more wild and open with only two very, very small outposts representing civilization. Whenever I’m there I feel so far away from the bustling culture that I had repeatedly experienced not two or three zones before. And that’s kind of a good change.
I also noticed how the devs open up quests more organically as you explore. Initially I only got one or two from Gloin; the rest came from riding around and getting pop up notifications to kill mobs, find treasure, etc.
At level 42, I’m hoping to get to 50 before too long here. I’m still very much starved for talent points, and there are two more great insta-attack skills for my Minstrel that I’m working toward obtaining. It’d be nice to have those going into Angmar, that’s for sure.