Monthly Archives: May 2010

Baby Dwarf in Training

Adam and Baby Dwarf

I couldn’t resist posting this piccie of Adam and Baby Dwarf. We decided you are never too young to get started learning the lore of Middle Earth, and Adam took it upon himself to teach him. I think Adam is showing him where the proposed next expansion will be in the Atlas of Middle Earth. Baby Dwarf seemed to be quite interested, now if we can just teach him to point and click a mouse………..


Ganin and Az come out to play

Ganin and Az relax in the home of Elrond Halfelven

I found that I had a spare hour the other day, so I decided to get Ganin my Dwarf Champ back out of his box and have a go at getting a few deeds done. His deeds had been sadly neglected while I was playing him – he was speed levelled for a chunk so he could catch up with Azaghar, Adam’s RK. I thought that if I did a few deeds I wouldnt get XP or complete any quests, and so stay in sync with Az. Most of the fun in duo levelling is doing everything at the same time. Because of the sporadic way I now end up playing – thanks to Baby Dwarf- I thought I’d start in Breeland and finish the deeds there, rather than cherry-pick them. If I did the deeds in area order, it would be easier to do a few deeds at a time and also keep track of them – better I thought as it would likely be near a month before I could get back to them. So I rode around and mopped them up, finding the dunedain statues and inscription, the Woodsedge ruins and Bronwes Folly, and smacking Neekers and Sickle- flies in the Marshes. That left me with the Old Forrest. I hate the Old Forrest. I find it impossible to navigate around, and now refuse to go in there until all the mobs are grey. So, armed with my trusty map of the area, I went in and did a circuit of the place, mopping up the deeds as I went – Flowers, Places and Awakened Trees. With the map and a planned route it only took about 20mins to get them all done, which I was pretty pleased with.

All the hard work seemed to pay off – Baby Dwarf kindly obliged by going to sleep at 8pm, leaving Adam and I the evening to resume play with Ganin and Az. We were in Echad Candellaith finishing the quest chains around there. Most of the mobs were one or two levels above us, but there were no problems at all. Ganin is now the proud owner of the Forrest Walkers set, which is quite alot better than the critted on level armour that I had on, which is quite rare. The earring which is part of the set isnt as good as the critted one I had on but I put it on anyway – what I lost in stats on the earring I had on was made up for by the 27 might you get for having all three on. We aced the down from the mountains quest where you have to protect Arifael the Giant in Giant Valley, which was an on level fellowship quest, and also did part of the eipc book 1 – Hiding in the Dark. Before the changes and it was still a full fellowship, we tried to do it, and were fine as long as there were no more than three of the Curlogs – Az was drawing too much aggro from healing, and I couldnt always keep aggro of all of them, so we decided to leave and come back. Now with the inspire buff it was a piece of cake, but I did notice that there were less of the Curlogs in there than there were then – they were mainly individuals with one group in the heart of the cave whereas last time there seemed to be groups of three at every turn and the odd individual wandering one too. That done, we are now on the last quest chain in the Trollshaws and a couple of K away from dinging 42. Lets just hope Baby Dwarf is feeling generous and gives us another night off.

Ganin and Az take on the Curr-ologs


Barandis brandishing her new Greatsword

My project at the moment is levelling my Cappy – Barandis Einarsdottir of Rohan. Like Adam alot of my characters are tied into group levelling and are off limits for some sneaky play – Ganin my champ is level 42 and is saved to level with Azaghar Adams RK, and Haki my mincer (and probably my favourite toon truth be told) is stranded in Forochel at level 50, waiting for the time we can get the three of us together online to play at the same time. Baby Dwarf has as anticipated made scheduling a time for a run a bit difficult, and Mike the other member of the Guard has been on Honeymoon, so all we can do is go on and pay the kinhouse rent or craft.

So, it has fallen to Barandis to satisfy my gaming needs, and I gotta admit after a shaky start playing Cappy ( if you see my altoholic page you’ll see how many times I have started and deleted a cappy) Im really enjoying it, and to be honest, its a quite good class to just pick up and play, because there aren’t as many buttons as there are for some other classes. Im really bad when it comes to remembering all the skills a class has especially if I havent played it for a while, one of the reasons why my cute hobbit warden has been neglected at 20 for over a year- too many gambit combos for me to remember.

At the end of last week I dinged 35, and am now the proud owner of a shiny new chestnut horse, a critted greatsword, a critted cloak, and a full set of critted westerness armour. I’ve got all the mats to make a set of critted jewellery too, but I’m waiting until 38 for those, then I can have the multi-output adamant jewellery which is much better than the 35 stuff. I’ve also got some nice finely woven standards – war and hope – and a critted sword maiden herald too, so I’m doing pretty good.

As of last night Barandis is just a sniff away from 38, done I must say mainly through skirmishes, as I am reluctant to start quests when I have Baby Dwarf, just to have to abandon them half way, die from being afk, then spending all the next time I have online trying to get back to the place where I was originally. The XP from skirmishes is awesome, did over half of level 37 last night just from three skirmishes, and finished a few class deeds to boot. I went for a herbalist skirmish soldier in then end, I figured that I was pretty survivable as a cappy, but liked the power a herbalist could give me. Shes now levelled up to either 39 or 43 on all her skills, and so I spent the rest of my skirmish marks on a scroll of empowerment and put it on the auction in the hopes of making a bit of cash.

I’m hoping to get Barandis high enough to play with Adams Cappy Eodraed (in-game brother and sister) whos currently 62, so I still have a way to go as yet. The leaked announcement of a new part of the map is a spur to play these two – getting closer to Rohan – cant wait to take these chaps back home! Because in the long run she is to duo with Eodraed (which Adam is very keen to do after plaing in Cappy duos and trios with Eodraed in our other kin) I am traiting Barandis to be a DPS cappy, while Eodraed is more of a healy cappy. I love being traited this way, especially having Routing Cry traited to be an AOE stun, and it comes in handy in skirmishes too.For the time being it is the only possible interrupt skill that I have, until I get Kick.


Weaponsmith Future?

O.K so my Cappy is an SM Weaponsmith, Kindred with the guild, but currently its not an amazing craft to have unless you are a champ, burglar, or hunter and want an off hand weapon! The legendary is a bit meh, some make good money at it but I’m not too fussed, but after hearing some info on potential upcoming changes this could get even worse, but it got me thinking there are still plenty of things a weaponsmith could do.

O.K so say a trait ‘skirmish soldier’ syle system is set up for L.I, then this could include cosmetic/appearance traits. So  weapon ‘Blade/head’ type and ‘hilt’ type; Let me expand a little. Take Maces- A character may slot a ‘Mace’ cosmetic appearance which has a default and has the current weapon type/race bonus’s. Then a Weaponsmith could be able to make a Elven Mace head, Dwarf Mace head, Men Mace head, and Hobbit Mace head, in addition to this there could be Elf, Dwarf, Men, and Hobbit Mace hilts.

This means you can customise the appearance of your weapon to suit the kind of character/story you are playing! I think these could be very simply done with multi-output recipes too;

Recipe: Mace Hilt, Output options: Dwarf, Elf, Hobbit, Men

Recipe: Mace Head, Output options: Dwarf, Elf, Hobbit, Men

The damage types could also be slotted in the same place, and its even possible that a few special rep based recipes/items can be added for specific factions. This gets rid of having an awesome weapon that looks like junk, but more importantly gives us some appearance customisation, and weaponsmith a decent role again whilst retaining the LI system.

*A few additonal notes, from a lore persepective I am well aware what we would consider ”hobbit blades’ would really be second ages elven daggers etc, so maybe racial types specifically would be better replaces with other types- Westernesse, Arnorian, Gondor, Thorins hall, Rohan, Bree, Lorien, Rivendell, etc etc which scale the way blades do now, but I think the basic principle is sound. I have also knocked up a diagram to show what I mean a little clear about the modular nature of this. (though please ignore the designs, graphics, and indeed given what I just typed the dwarf/hobbit types etc, it was a 15 minute Illustrator job for demonstration purposes! :D)


So What Next?

I’m in a bit of a LOTRO lull at the moment. Baby Dwarf has had the anticipated effect on our gaming time over the past couple of months, but we have been able to get on to play, and the last few weeks I have got an hour or so of gaming most nights (though in some cases it has meant staying up a bit too late- d’oh!). The only problem is gaming time together is now nigh on none existant, and is joining scheduled runs, and I’m a bit stuck with what character to play/level solo.

I thought it might be an idea to do a little run down of who I have got, what level, and my thoughts on the character/class, may help me organise my play time a little better as at the moment I am a little lost for one reason or another as to what to do.

1 Elgalandir: My Man champ and main, he’s 65, fully geared, plenty radiance, and raid ready, but atm joining raids is pretty much out and I play him with Emmas tank, so he’s kinda in skirmish territory atm.

2 Chumbo Bobbins, Hobbit Burglar, Level 65 I love chumbers and burglars, but atm its running instances to get raid gear and min/maxing, then using him in groups, which agan is a bit of a struggle with anti-social hours I play.

3 Eodraed, Man Captain, Level 62, I love my cappy, but you really gotta play them in groups and I have decided to play him with Emmas Rohirrim cappy eventually  (after seeing what wonders a cappy duo can do), and Emmas is still in the mid 30’s so a little wait is on there!

4 Izbaruk, Dwarf Guardian, Level 50, Izzy is part of the ‘Guard 3 man so nothing I can do there with out Emma and our friend Mike.

5  Tyri, Dwarf Hunter, Level 52, a reasonable contender but I gotta be honest I just find hunter a bit meh?  You get around quick and shoot stuff fast, there are fears and roots, but there is not much variation in the role. I maybe need to get a little love back for the hunter as I feel sorry for poor ol’ Tyri as he’s one of the most fun characters I have.

6 Azaghar, Dwarf Runekeeper, Level 41, I’d love to level him as he’s my tailor and I want to get those Lorien and Mirkwood shiny tailor recipes! But I duo him with Emmas Dwarf Champ Ganin so he’s off limits too.

7 Elgilas, Elf Warden, Level 36, Another good contender, a great solo class I had been waiting for Emmas Captain to duo the GA three mans,  but maybe I’ll just skip and start working on him as Warden is superb solo, and for doing tough content even at low level. The simultaneous adds I can handle at 36 is very impressive!

8 Feangol, Elf Loremaster, Level 28, I haven’t given loremaster enough time. I like the idea of Pets and the creativity of play like with a burglar or warden, where you can potentially solo some hard content with some skill. I was finding him a bit squishy and tough to play, but I crafted him some new critted gear and he’s a hell of a lot better and might well be my next project. I also seen some really cool outfits for him at level 50+ so another great incentive!

9 Bumfast Tunnelly, Hobbit Minstrel, Level 26, Another strong contender as he’s a real character and he has been my festival toon over the past year or so so I’ve had a lot of fun on him without many levels. Maybe its time to give him a whirl at leveling other than just cheeky chappy RP?

10 Skiddi, Dwarf Champion, Level 7 (? ish) I rolled another Champ becasue A) you can’t have too many dwarves, and B) because Merrics experiences made me intrigued as to how it felt levelling Champ as I have played one at cap for so long.

11 Belegram, Man Guardian, Level 1- brand new in the damn box! I wanted a man of Gondor, so I had to duplicate something and my other Guardian is in the Guard so this character can go in my main kinship.

12 Thrukband, Dwarf Minstrel, Level 7- Again you can’t have too many of them dwarrows, I wanted a Minstrel in the Khazadguard, and I also fancied trying an out and out DPS Warrior Skald.

So thats them, and looking at them… I still can’t decide, but I may do a few level on my Loremaster and see how it goes!

Chumbers Dings

A week or two after Mirkwood was released I first took Chumbo in there, and then after very quickly levelling to 63 I stopped. I’m not sure why, Burglar is a superb class to play, Chumbo is fun character, and I was enjoying the quests, but either way I stopped. When I started a few weeks back I played him some more but mainly doing volume 1 book quests (I struggled at gates of CD even at 63- a 7k NPC and multiple adds mean I ain’t getting agro fast enough, but I often find escort quests tough on Burglar if the NPC breaks stunns and draws lots of agro, despite being able to solo some things other players struggle with- anyway I digress).

So finally a few days back I decide to get him to cap… and guess what? Burglars are awesome! I dinged 65 on Tuesday- this is a little late! So now I’m working on a couple of level 65 weapons and bags for him for different scenarios, so finding them with the right combo on can be difficult but I’m getting there!

Legacies I love for different reasons- Addle cooldown is awesome, I can now get an interupt from range every 5 seconds, confound countdown duration is nice for solo when you end up mob heavy! Positional Damage and Critical Response chain damage are great for maximising dps, and Well placed strike cooldown and burglars bleed- I trait to take advantage of these and they can seriously sap a foe fast, especially well placed strike; over 200 damage every 5 seconds on a 1 minuite cool down- whats not to like! And lastly ready and able cool down, which is always usefull when soloing 20K plus mobs. I’ll have a look at some other legacies, as Burglar is very much a class I like to set up depending on if I’m playing 6mans, raids or solo.

RP’ing Dwarfs

 O.K Emma and I love the dwarfs, we each have one of each and though we are not huge Role Players we do a little light RP and probably would do more on an RP server. Most of what we do is chatting to NPC’s and having fun when handing quests in, very occasionally in a pub or when we meet some one out questing. But what we always do is what I consider to be true dwarfen behaviour, as sepcified by Tolkien. Much of what I have seen from some players out there seem to be inspired by Peter Jacksons interpretation, and what other fantasy fields have done; WOW, Games Workshop, etc etc.

Dwarfs should be honourable, well spoken, noble, stoic, darkly humerous, and above all dignified. It was whilst reading the Codemasters forum I came across this post which I think says it all very nicely, well worth a read if you are interested in dwarfs or RP!