Monthly Archives: February 2011

Tuesday Treats!

Just a quick post to let you all know whats on sale in the LoTRO Store today- 50% off Character slots! Yey! All you altoholics out there can indulge yourselves for the bargain price of 298 TP’s. Great value!

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Casual Stroll to Mordor- where’d they go

This is a quick note for those of you (like us) looking for a fix on news over at our friends A Casual Stroll to Mordor, and suddenly finding the site down. The team have been putting updates out on facebook and twitter, and here is the latest news from facebook:

Issue with the website appears to be more serious than previously thought. It wasn’t an outage, we have been deactivated by the host. We are trying to figure out but it appears we are being shut down.


This is obviously horrible news and we hope they find a solution soon. If you want to know more, you can keep up to date with them at their facebook page or on twitter, as I am sure most of you are anyway.

Most importantly you can make a donation to help get these guys on there facebook page here. I’m sure any small amount would be gratefully recieved.

We’ll try and keep you up to date with anymore news, and good luck finding a host guys!

Adam and Emma

Steed of the Night Leaving Stores

Today it has been announced that the Steed of the Night is leaving stores this Sunday. It has been reduced by 20% to 1596 TPs, so if you want it get it now!

There has been alot of discussions on the forums over this with speculation that it is only a temporary removal, or that it may return as a possible faction reward in further expansions.

Personally, while I like the look of it, I can’t justify spending that many points on it.

 

The Eglain Rep Grind

Like many of you out there, we decided we needed the World Renowned Horse on at least one of our characters. So who better than Izbaruk and Haki, the Lord and the Heir of the Khazad Guard to go out there and get it. Thanks to crafting, being completionist in zones and alot of grinding, we managed to do pretty well, until it got to the Eglain. We were both Friend, having got the retrospective Rep from there when the Lone Lands was revamped, and thought it would be pretty easy to get to Kindred from there. Being 57, we were far too high to do any of the tasks, which grant 300 rep each, and grinding the Weathertop skirmish was out, because we couldn’t level up without our mate Anlafski, having levelled all the way up as a Trio, and it would take a lot of them. What we needed was minimum XP with maximum rep. With most of the other factions this is pretty easy – grind a load of rep barterables on a high level alt, or if golds burning a hole in your pocket, hit the Auction Hall. There are a few other ways to earn the trust of the Eglain other than skirmishes, tasks and quests (especially running Garth Agarwen). All humanoid mobs (no animals or swarms) give 8 rep when killed, which doesn’t make much of a dent when you’re grinding rep, but probably adds up when your on level questing around there and doing deeds (such as Orcs for Valour, always nice). Theres also bounty quests in Ost Haer in Harloeg which are repeatable three times, give about 500 rep each and you get a couple of Ruby Shards too.

We did those ones and were still a good chunk short of Kindred, so we thought rather than try more GA’s we’d have a go at the crafting quest ones. You can collect them for each craft you have (sorry Explorers, you’re stuck with just Tailor ones). The chain starts at Dol Vaeg, where you have to craft something and deliver it to Ost Guruth. This then opens up the chance of repeating the crafting quests for rep, which you can do as many times as you like, but be warned – you have to purchase each of these quests which cost around 21 silver (the price may fluctuate – remember you get vendor discount depending on your standing with the faction). You get 700 rep for each one, and get about 11 silver back as a quest reward. At this point we were just into Ally, so thought it would save a lot of time grinding if we just crafted our way from there. Adam started first, and as a Jeweller he could buy both the Jeweller and Cook quests, but decided to just go with the Cook ones so he didn’t have to use up a lot of ore. The quests are Expert level ones, so great if you want to get craft XP, but as anyone who has a Jeweller will know, you want to hoard that gold ore!

I sent him the veg he needed from an alt ( Yellow Onions and Taters) and he topped up by buying a stack on the Auction hall for about 20 silver, and after about 20-30 mins he was all done and Kindred. I thought that was pretty good so I did that too. My character Haki is an Explorer, so I could only buy the Tailor quest – make 6 Sturdy leather bindings. I thought this would be easy, I had over 600 hides sat on an alt, so I transferred them over and set to work. Of course, 600 hides turn into 300 leather (I’m not factoring in crits here, its by no means an exact science). You need 6 sturdy leather bindings for each quest hand in, and you use 2 leather for each one, so those 3oo hides I had actually equated to 25 quest hand ins, or 17500 rep, and 525 silver to complete. I was still only just over half way through Ally, and had gone through 600 Sturdy Hides. Rather than grind a butt load of hides, because I was being lazy and it was close to Midnight, and it had become a matter of principle that I had to get Kindred that day, I ventured to the AH. Man, hides and ore are expensive – and I came away a few gold poorer than when I went in, but at least I had enough hides to complete. Of course I had to wait about an hour while I processed the hides and crafted the bindings but eventually I handed in the last one and eventually got Kindred – at last! Now we just have to wait until we get into Enedwaith and get rep with the Algraig and Grey Company to reach the end and the Steed of Eriador.

But this got me thinking what other crafts had to do to get rep with the Eglain – I know from Adam crafting the Cook quests was a fairly quick, cheap and painless way of getting it (half an hour to my several hours, and fruit and veg is ridiculously cheap on the Auction compared to ore and hides, but then again it is a lot easier to get a stack of them. I know when I was trying to get juicy strawberries for my scholar in about half an hour I had over 400 strawberries and 8 juicies), but what did the other Crafts have to produce? Did they need to spend more on their items to get the same outcome? Is it worth it, and which is the best craft to have to get rep for the Eglain in this way? I set about investigating this, and have made a table so you can all see exactly what is needed.

Craft Item No. Requires From Vendor Cost from Vendor Useable Crit
Woodworker Yew Fishing Pole 1 8x Yew Logs 4x Wax, 1x Sturdy Leather Wrap 4.96 silver No
Metalsmith Steel Prospectors Tool 1 10x Rich Iron Ore 5x Lump Coal, 1x Short Yew Shaft 16 silver No
Weaponsmith Basic Lure Trap 3 3x Bundle Straw 3x Long Yew Shaft, 3x Short Yew Shaft 24 silver Yes
Scholar Minor Foe Finder 8 16x Faded Sindarin Pages 8x Quill and Ink Set 19.20 silver Yes
Cook Hearty Onion Soup 2 2x Yellow Onions, 2x Green Onions, 2x Taters 2x Lamb Kidney, 2x Bottle of Water 2.88 silver Yes
Jeweller Ruby Ring 1 1x Polished Ruby, 8x Gold Ore No
Tailor Sturdy Leather Bindings 6 24x Sturdy Leather Hides Yes

This table shows what it takes each craft vocation to produce for one quest only, which grants 700 Rep. I have also broken these down to the individual crafts and just what it takes in the real sense to get any decent chunk of Rep. Where I have said no to critical success items being used in the quests, this is because these produce superior items which are not required by the Eglain, they want basic stuff and lots of it. So those of you who have crafts which apply to this, make sure you have a little extra of the resources to accommodate for this. Those with crafts which on a critical success produce a higher quantity of the item rather than a single superior item, great! You can get away with a little less of the resources. I have broken this down further into the relevant crafts, so you can see just what you may be getting yourselves in for. Please note all prices are in silver, and the cost that I paid per quest was 21.50 silver, but this may be a little higher depending on your current standing and vendor discounts, and all vendor prices are the standard ones – remember to buy local if you have a house or a member of a Kin with Kinhouse.

Woodworker:

Rep Quests Quest Cost Total Ingredients Required Vendor Cost Quest Reward Monetary Outlay
700 1 21.50 8x Yew Logs, 4x Wax, 1x Sturdy Leather Wrapping 4.96 11.50 14.96
3500 5 107.50 40x Yew Logs, 20x Wax, 5x Sturdy Leather Wrappings 24.80 57.50 74.80
7000 10 215 80xYew Logs, 40x Wax, 10x Sturdy Leather Wrappings 49.60 115 149.60
10500 15 322.5 120x Yew Logs, 60x Wax, 15 x Sturdy Leather Wrappings 74.4 172.5 224.4

Metalworker:

Rep Quests Quest Cost Total Ingredients Required Vendor Cost Quest Reward Monetary Outlay
700 1 21.50 10x Rich Iron Ore, 5x Lump Coal, 1x Short Yew Shaft 16 11.50 26
3500 5 107.50 50x Rich Iron Ore, 25x Lump Coal, 5x Short Yew Shaft 80 57.50 130
7000 10 215 100x Rich Iron Ore, 50x Lump Coal, 10x Short Yew Shaft 160 115 260
10500 15 322.50 150x Rich Iron Ore, 75x Lump Coal, 15x Short Yew Shaft 240 172.50 390

Weaponsmith :

You need straw, and plenty of it! Straw is a random drop from grain farms only, so good luck!

Rep Quests Quest Cost Total Ingredients Required Vendor Cost Quest Reward Monetary Outlay
700 1 21.50 3x Bundle of Straw, 3x Long Yew Shaft, 3x Short Yew Shaft 24 11.50 34
3500 5 107.50 15x Bundle of Straw, 15x Long Yew Shaft, 15x Short Yew Shaft 120 57.50 170
7000 10 215 30x Bundle of Straw, 30x Long Yew Shaft, 30x Short Yew Shaft 240 115 340
10500 15 322.50 45x Bundle of Straw, 45x Long Yew Shaft, 45x Short Yew Shaft 360 172.50 510

Scholar :

Yikes! Good luck getting those Sindarin Pages! My advice is to go and farm a load of oats, get the Straw from your farms and go with Weaponsmith.

Rep Quests Quest Cost Total Ingredients Required Vendor Cost Quest Reward Monetary Outlay
700 1 21.50 16x Faded Sindarin Pages, 8x Quill and Ink Set 19.20 11.50 29.20
3500 5 107.50 80x Faded Sindarin Pages, 40x Quill and Ink Sets 96 57.50 146
7000 10 215 160x Faded Sindarin Pages, 80x Quill and Ink Sets 192 115 292
10500 15 322.50 240x Faded Sindarin Pages, 120x Quill and Ink Sets 288 172.50 438

Cook:

Aaaaah, a friendly Farmer or a cheap shop at the Auction, and you’re home and dry!

Rep Quests Quest Cost Total Ingredients Required Vendor Cost Quest Reward Monetary Outlay
700 1 21.50 2x Yellow Onions, 2x Green Onions, 2x Taters2x Lamb Kidney2x Bottle of Water 2.88 11.50 12.88
3500 5 107.50 10x Yellow Onions, 10x Green Onions, 10x Taters10x Lamb Kidney10x Bottle of Water 14.40 57.50 64.40
7000 10 215 20x Yellow Onions, 20x Green Onions, 20x Taters20x Lamb Kidney20x Bottle of Water 28.80 115 128.80
10500 15 322.50 30x Yellow Onions, 30x Green Onions, 30x Taters30x Lamb Kidney30x Bottle of Water 43.20 172.50 193.20

Jeweller:

Ooooooh – all that gold! You’ll need to be a veritable Smaug for this one. You sure you don’t want to cook?

Rep Quests Quest Cost Total Ingredients Required Vendor Cost Quest Reward Monetary Outlay
700 1 21.50 1x Polished Ruby, 8x Gold Ore 11.50 10
3500 5 107.50 5x Polished Ruby, 40x Gold Ore 57.50 50
7000 10 215 10x Polished Ruby, 80x Gold Ore 115 100
10500 15 322.50 15x Polished Ruby, 120x Gold Ore 172.50 150

Tailor:

You need serious amounts of hides for this – time to do the Warg deed?

Rep Quests Quest Cost Total Ingredients Required Vendor Cost Quest Reward Monetary Outlay
700 1 21.50 24x Sturdy Leather Hides 11.50 10
3500 5 107.50 130x Sturdy Leather Hides 57.50 50
7000 10 215 260x Sturdy Leather Hides 115 100
10500 15 322.50 390x Sturdy Leather Hides 172.50 150

My conclusion from all this is; don’t use this method of getting Rep unless your vault is stuffed to the rafters with your crafts expert level resources and you have a healthy bank balance. If you really want the Rep, take a little time to see how much you need and try to take all your resources with you – remember Ost Guruth only has the basic crafting facilities and vendors, no vault access and no Auction Hall, so you may not be able to get everything you need on site.

Hope this helps!

Emma

Radiance, Instance Gear, and Experience- Is any of it working?

Firstly I’ll apologise unreservedly for this being the first post for 2 months. We have had a crazy busy time at work, and indeed at home with a few new ventures, and on top of it all baby dwarf is teething. We have had some time to play, but that’s been it really not really much time to devote to writing new posts, or finishing half done ones, even though I have wanted to. However, time to start and try to set that straight.

Last night I logged into the main kin we are in outside of the Khazad Guard, to check my post on those characters. A friend asked if I fancied doing an instance for old-time sake and I said why not. It was pretty late but we got a team together and an odd random member from outside the kin, and decided to do Grand Stairs. In the short period of milling around we were discussing the new armour sets and radiance removal and a few people said they didn’t like the radiance removal, their logic being that possession of enough radiance gear meant that you knew players were experienced. Now I don’t necessarily agree with this but we were about to set off so I said I wasn’t so sure, and off we went. But this got me thinking over this debate that has raged on the forums and lord knows elsewhere for ages, because Radiance gated an instance until you had the relevant experience and gear, and the acquisition of the gear would ‘train’ you as part of a team and give you that experience, but the system was flawed and we have moved away from that, to a system that to my mind added some flexibility in, but does neither of these initial goals. Anyway, if you want to read a potted history it is written down here by Haakon and very well at that, and I agree wholeheartedly with him.

Now Ironically our PUG joining champion proved my reservations about the whole system as it currently stands, and how it actually does not teach folks to play their class or give them experience. To cut a long story short, when it came to the final boss the leader asked the champ to tank the archers and the warden the boss, the champ expressed reservations about tanking the archers, and basically couldn’t/didn’t leaving myself and the minnie to try to heal, whilst we swapped agrro from them to me on my captain. Now the silly thing is, this champ had some decent gear, was level 65, so if the theory purported was true he should be experienced right? Well, no, because basically he had probably just run GS and Sword Halls a load of times, and even then seems only to have got through them as you can easily run these with fewer players than necessary, especially above level, so probably got carried by some groups, like ours. I suspect anything requiring a degree of proficiency like Forges or Dark Delvings will never get touched by such players, indeed why would most players focused on endgame gearing up bother when they will soon work out which single instance to grind.

Now the old system of each instance dropping a coin for a specific armour piece, prevented this, and also made sure that someone wearing a full set of gear had seen the variety of fights and strategies required, and probably tried a few of the variations of role their class may be asked to play. The draw back…. well lets just say I did enough Fil Gashans, watching others who had barely run it win, to last a lifetime before I finally got those gloves. I always wondered why under this system every player couldn’t get a coin/token, yet it require 3-5 of them to pick up the armour, surely this would have addressed the biggest complaint?

The new system meant there was always a reason to help, you could always go into any instance to earn some points for whatever armour piece you needed, however it seems all anyone wanted to do was run Grand Stairs, and then with Mirkwood Swordhalls. So; so much for variety and experience.

I don’t think radiance was the answer. I think a deed gated system if a far more appropriate method, and hopefully similar to the Helegrod system, though that too has its grind flaws. If in the new instances there is a deed to kill/complete both 3 mans, and both 6 mans before you enter the raid, then that as far as I am concerned is not a bad idea. It provides the complete story, and opportunity to refresh skills and get an idea of what you may face in the raid, and you can begin to build up your gear for the raid, and the barter system will hopefully mean it is possible to vary the way you acquire these pieces for folks with less time such as myself and Emma. Of course, it will inevitably mean that in a few months time one or two of these will become grind fests, because that’s the way min-maxers often work, but maybe if they add some nice jewelry drops to all 4 instances, then this will encourage folks to keep up a variety?

Anyway, I suspect they are not quite there yet, but I am optimistic it is getting nearer where it should be, and look forward to the new content!

P.S: If you were thinking, this pictures were a bit random and irrelevant, then well spotted. It was a wall of text I had nothing relevant to put with it, so I thought what the hell… love that shadowwy picture of Izbaruk though!