Tell me about LOTR Online

[quote=“smiling_bandit, post:20, topic:555572”]

[QUOTE=Airk]
I’m with Maeglin. This is the opposite of my experience - I find the interface to be, if nothing else, familiar, the stories to be well told and generally NOT rely on the player being an idiot (though it sometimes happens) and the character models look nice - and not goofy and out of proportion like a certain popular but cartoony MMO. (It’s a bad sign when I can’t play a human in your game because I just can’t get over how stupid they look.)

Are you -seriously- judging the game by the first ten minutes of the tutorial, where you have to wait for thing to happen because they are teaching you how to play?

Dunno -what- your problem is with the character designs. Maybe you were a dwarf and didn’t realize it? :stuck_out_tongue:

Interface size is adjustable with a convenient slider.

Sounds to me like someone who wrote off the game without even checking to see if any of his complaints were actually grounded.

Hmm, well I took the plunge and downloaded it. Any tips or advise going into it?

[quote=“Airk, post:21, topic:555572”]

[quote=“smiling_bandit, post:20, topic:555572”]

Yeah, going to have to agree with Airk here.

The interface is, of course, fully customizable. If you think it’s cluttered, then rearrange it. You don’t need five hotbars at level 5. If you think it’s too large, shrink it like Airk said. Or if you really know what you’re doing, disable it altogether. Honestly, this is perhaps the most baseless criticism of the game that I have ever heard.

For those other than smiling bandit, the tutorials are really fun. I especially like the hobbit intro.

The only advice I have is to explore early and often. Completing quests is great, but there are so many hidden gems in the game that only reveal themselves if you pay attention and wander a bit. The designers were deeply in touch with the source material and represent small details delightfully. This is especially true in the intro zones. If I were starting with a hobbit, I wouldn’t leave the Shire until I’ve explored every square inch of it. Gear, levels, quest completions, etc will all happen eventually whether you aim for them or not. But the designers’ care for the lore and the beauty of the world are easy to overlook if you get too focused on advancement too quickly.

I say this as a fairly dedicated endgame raider with nearly every trait complete and nearly ideal gear for my class. There’s much more to the game than this stuff, so do enjoy it!

Holy crap, this is awesome fun. I’m playing on Silverlode if anyone wants to get a party together after I finish the intro, but for now I’m just having an awesome time running through the early quests.

Now, I’m starting with a Burglar because I love being the scout and “asshole rogue” style of glass cannon in general, but I would really like to try my hand at a support role. Now my favorite supports tend to be the tactical “force multiplier” types: they don’t necessarily do that much (or any) damage, but their presence tends to really boost the party’s survivability and flexibility.

Now it seems to me (with very little background) that I’m basically talking about either a Rune-Keeper or a Lore-Master, so if I was going for the pure support option which (if either) would I want?

And finally (sorry for all the questions!), I understand that guardian is the pure tank, warden is the often tank, and champion is the sometimes-tank mostly-dps, but what about the Captain? Is that the primary buffing class, or just another variety of melee contributor?

No, I’m judging it by the first 20-odd levels, including numerous events which occurred only because I simply wasn’t allowed to intervene. And that’s not counting when you get feared. I’m talking about when you’re just stuck and could easily stab the bad guys (all of them) and just aren’t allowed, so that the characters can run away for some other insipid quest.

I played all the races except Hobbit. Elves were all right, I guess, but humans and dwarves are freaky.

Size is only small part of the problem. Icons are cluttered, poorly visible, look alike, and even after hours and hours I could not actually remember which one was which.

Yeah, that coupla weeks of hard playing was me just looking for things to complain about. Look, it’s a WoW clone, a weak one at that, and I didn’t see it using much of its intellectual property to its best. The crafting was one of those “nice in theory, awful in practice” things. I’m happy you like it, but I could never recommend it anybody.

To be fair, I loved the virtue system, and I liked the class design more than any other MMO I’ve seen yet. But it was lacking the fun department.

First, Burglars are absolutely not glass cannons. They are extremely hardy: they wear medium armor, have huge evade rates, and have several emergency skills to get out of jail free. You will find that your Burg can go toe to toe with several at-level mobs at once without breaking a sweat.

Burgs, Captains, and Loremasters are good force multipliers. Each of these three classes can do what you are looking for.

As you will soon discover, Burgs are marvelous debuffers. They can lay down a debuff that straight up increases melee damage done to a target by 10%.

Captains have Telling Mark that increases base damage of all kinds (melee, ranged, tactical) by 5%. This percentage can be increased by various means as you level. They also have the unbeatable Oathbreaker’s Shame, a debuff that can massively increase fellowship damage output over a short period.

Loremasters can do a pretty huge variety of highly situational things. LMs can annihilate mobs’ armor value with Ancient Craft, can increase the ranged critical ratings of fellowship members with a high level pet, can increase tactical damage to certain creature types with Warding Circles, and bunches of other stuff. They do a lot of other things besides. Best of all, you get to wade into melee in a bathrobe wielding a sword and staff.

Guardians are indeed primary tanks. Wardens are wonderful tanks as well in a
very different sort of way. Champs are indeed melee AoE DPS and are much less effective tanks than they used to be. The Captain is a marvelous support class that has some threat skills, some pets, buffing, off-healing, and can take enormous amounts of punishment thanks to their superior morale and heavy armor use. I love it when there’s a Captain in the group.

I enjoyed the Captain most of all the classes I tried. it’s a fun class design, and you get your own minion/pet dude who follows you around and hits things for you.

Uh, I wouldn’t say they’re “extremely hardy”; My burglar runs into problems whenever she gets faced by more than 2 critters if she can’t Riddle one temporarily. I know they improve towards endgame, but “extremely hardy” is still not how I’d describe one. Slippery maybe. “Not wussy like a runekeeper” certainly, but “extremely hardy”? Not so much.

Yeah, as mentioned here, you’ve already GOT one of the premier force multiplier classes in the game. The LotRO burglar is NOT the WoW rogue - your DPS is respectable, but you’re not in the same league as the hunter/champion/runekeeper. It’s the “other stuff” that makes the burglar worthwhile.

Correct; Guardians and Wardens are both ‘primary tanks’. Their methods are different, and the guardian has the option of going for overpower stance when he wants DPS, whereas the warden is stuck at low DPS but has good personal travel options. Champion is indeed occasionally a tank but mostly AoE/single target DPS (They’re probably the best AoE DPS in the game.)

Captains…defy convenient classification, unless you think “hybrid” is a good classification. :wink: They are theoretically the “primary” buffing class, but that’s only a tiny fraction of what they do. Captains can: Offtank single enemies (their multi-target tanking is sketchy and mostly depends on healing aggro), apply damage boosting effects to both enemies (incoming damage boosted) and allies (outgoing damage boosted), apply several stacking Heal Over Time effects to generate very solid healing, apply large buffs to group survivability in the form of morale and stat buffs, soak up damage that would kill many other classes, and do it all from the front line while putting out steady (if unimpressive) melee DPS. (No one takes a captain for DPS)

Captains are pretty awesome, but they’re not for everyone. Some people find their slow-but-incredibly-steady kill rate to be tiresome, and it’s true that they are at their strongest in a group. They -are- pretty unique as a class in modern MMOs though - the closest thing most games have to them is a sort of “paladin” class, but paladins tend to be much closer to “tank with a bit of other stuff” than Captains are.

Huh, that’s interesting. I do rather like my burglar, even if the need to slow down whenever I’m pulling is frustrating.

Finally, exactly how useful are Minstrels? They seem to be the most in-demand class, but I would have thought that the utility stuff the rogue and lore-master are capable of would be more essential to a group than stock healing.

I don’t play a burglar at endgame. I just find that with evade, stuns, self-heals, and tricks, my burglar can survive a heck of a lot. Perhaps the word “hardy” means something slightly different to each of us, but I suspect we agree at the core. I feel the same way about the LM. Runekeepers, on the other hand, do indeed fold like cheap suits if you aren’t careful.

Minstrels are extremely useful. People ask for them a lot because they really are good at keeping people alive and are an obvious choice to round out a party. For my money, I’d rather do ordinary instances with myself (LM), a good Captain, and a Burglar. If you play carefully and use crowd control, you end up with plenty of healing and a more challenging and dynamic experience. That said, it is still great to have a minstrel. :slight_smile:

Most people like the comfy feeling of having a healer. A captain can main heal most instances in the game if the group knows how to work with him, but it also makes it more critical to have a crowd control class, and some bosses can just outpace what a Captain can heal without someone else contributing.

Minstrels are very solid healers. A group has a smurf up pretty big in order to get killed with a minstrel present which means they can play a LOT sloppier. And there’s a lot to be said for not having to be a finely tuned machine to do content. That and, well, a lot of six man instances would be HARD with a captain as your lone healer.

That said, I’m not sure how much the Minstrel really has up on the Runekeeper, except for the fact that most Runekeeper PLAYERS don’t like to heal and suck at it because they spend all their time calling down theme-breaking fire and lightning. :stuck_out_tongue:

Anyway, regarding burglar survivability, I don’t like to count “get out of jail free” cards, because those are usually on long cooldowns, and I don’t think they are representative of ‘normal’ play. Being able to survive 6 on-level critters at once and blow a bunch of GOJF cards is one thing. Being able to survive 6 on level critters at once, eat some food, and then go do it AGAIN is “extremely hardy.” :wink:

I do play an endgame RK and I absolutely love healing as do most of the RKs I know. It’s very exciting and frequently unforgiving.

And ok, burgs don’t approach warden levels of hardiness. :slight_smile: But aside from HIPS and the evade buff, I think that the burg’s situational tools are very representative of regular play. I also tend to play squishy back-benchers, so I readily admit that my estimation of hardiness is based on this.

I must be doing something wrong.

My Champion (level 47), Burgler (level 54), and Hunter (level 52) can barely handle two same level critters. Definately can’t do three at once.

My Warden (level 58) does well enough.

For those of you doing six at once, is the key good gear, talents, or skill rotation?

Probably all of the above. The most important thing is your strategy. As a Champ you should probably be able to stand there and down two without breaking a sweat in the right stance. As a burg or hunter, if you are having trouble, use your mez or fear to lock one of them down.

Three mobs is a little trickier but very possible for these classes. I can definitely give you some general guidelines, but you also might have success checking the class boards at lotro.com.

ETA: Six mobs at once is a lot. Only few classes will be able to deal with this situation. It also never really happens unless you go around tagging far more stuff than you have to.

Thanks for the reply.

I tried looking through the various class forums some time ago, but usually the thread participants were too immature for me to stomach, or too advanced into theory crafting for me to follow along.

Six is a mild exaggeration - though you’ll find a lot of top end captains asserting that they can do that many without breaking a sweat. My captain is a long way from top end, but 4 is still pretty easy pickings for him unless they do nonstandard damage or something (Opponents that do Shadow Damage or Fire Damage for example, chew into him a lot faster.). Captains are well suited for this sort of thing though - at level 65 with the correct traits/legendaries, they are:

Wearing heavy armor (With an added 700+ armor from Defensive Strike)
Buffed to 10% more morale than they would be unbuffed, +50 to all stats, plus the effects of having a standard equipped (+880 morale and a big heap of melee offense). Plus the effects of placing the banner on the field (Still more morale, and In-Combat Morale Regen)
Healing themselves for 15% of all the damage they do to a target marked with Revealing Mark
Healing themselves for 600+ morale plus a few hundred more over time each time they defeat an opponent, plus when they score a crit with their (gated) frontal AoE attack. Plus getting around 250 power each time they do this.
Healing themselves for around five hundred points of morale over every 20 seconds or so with Traited Muster Courage.
Healing themselves a couple hundred points, plus several hundred more every 90 seconds or so with Valiant Strike.

That’s all just ‘passive’ stuff, or stuff that’s on a 90 second or less cooldown. There are a couple more tricks that can be thrown on if necessary for more brutal fights. Captains are just naturally excellent at -wearing- -down- enemies. Where they run into trouble is areas with fast respawn rates, where the captain can literally get stuck in an infinite loop where things just keep repopping as fast as he can kill them, and therefore eventually runs him out of power.

Captains are probably second only to Wardens in sheer toughness.

Thanks, Airk. I’ll note those traits down for my Captain. :slight_smile:

Hmm, my lore-master just hit 14, and while he’s gotten MUCH more survivable since he got his bear, I have so many spells that I feel I’m neglecting a lot of options. I thought one of the LM’s big points was supposed to be that he was a crowd control specialist, but exactly what kind of strategy should I be using? As far as I can tell I have lots of minor debuffs, two single-target crowd control spells (one that actually stunlocks, one which just dazes), and a couple of damage spells. As such, my strategy tends to simply consist of the following in every situation:

  1. Send in tank player/bear
  2. Use appropriate Lore debuff
  3. Stun the most dangerous-looking guy in the pack
  4. Single target Burning Ember/Gust of Wind, alternate until enemy dies
  5. Repeat!

I’m not complaining, because it definitely works, but it just feels like I’m playing him as a DPS class and neglecting his real utility.

Well, if you’re soloing, a lot of the time, you won’t NEED crowd control. Soloing, creatures tend to be easily caught alone, unless you’re deliberately seeking out more crowded areas, or trying to solo a small fellowship quest or something.

This is one of the weaknesses of a solo-friendly MMO - it means that crowd control classes are somewhat marginalized. The LotRO Loremaster is never going to be the shining bastion of “Geez, there are 12 mobs here, and we get to fight them one at a time” that the EQ enchanter used to be, but there are still plenty of times when it’s mighty handy to have one. And even solo, it means that you can wade into areas that are much thicker with opponents and roamers than a class that doesn’t deal so well with extras (such as, say, a hunter.) So… you’re still quite young yet, and I don’t remember what race you said you were, but try exploring some of the “monster infested ruin” areas around your current zone instead of just killing things out in the open.

To mlees - that’s a “Hands of Healing” trait build for the captain (up until recently, it was the runaway most effective build. They rejiggered the other two trait lines somewhat though, and it’s no longer the shoe-in it once was), and uses the following traits:

Legendary:
In Defense of Middle Earth - +50 to all stats
Hands of Healing - +10% to all healing, reduces the cooldown of Valiant Strike, and adds the Heal Over Time to Valiant strike.
You can use your third slot for…well, if you’re soloing, it’s Oathbreaker’s Shame. If healing for a group, you may prefer Shield of the Dunedain, for a supporting role in a full fellowship, it could be anything.

Class: You need 5 traits in the Hands of Healing line to slot the legendary trait. If you’re strictly soloing, those are probably going to be:

Strong Voice - Reduced power cost means you can go longer without running out of power
Captain’s Hope - Some extra morale, ICMR, and a point of Hope if you’re not using another Hope source. Not incredible, but several of the other HoH class traits do nothing solo.
Now For Wrath - This should pretty much never be untraited. With good legendaries means your rallying cry gives you power BACK when you use it. Even better in a group.
Relentless Optimism - Critical heals are 10% bigger. This is a weak trait, but the other two HoH traits are useless solo (Though not in Skirmishes since you have a soldier). If you do lots of skirmishes, or want to save on retraiting when joining groups, lose this for Fear No Darkness or Deeds Before Words. (And if you want, you can drop Captain’s Hope for the other one, but that will represent a bit more sacrifice of your soloing might.)
Strength From Within: Adds a fairly solid Heal Over Time to Muster Courage. Combine with a Legendary with reduced Muster Courage cooldown for even more oompf.

Note: With recent changes to Heralds and Banners, it might be interesting to try forgoing Strength from Within for a different trait, and using a Herald of Hope (Or maybe even a Herald of Victory if power is an issue, though in that case, drop Captain’s Hope too). I haven’t tested this yet though, so I don’t know how well the healing from Lend Hope compares to the healing from Strength from Within.

In terms of Legendary Items, the key Legacies are:
Weapon:
Increased Targets for Pressing Attack - this is key for those big brawls with 3+ critters. Pressing Attack only hits two targets by default, but each one that you can attack is another chance to score a crit, which will unlock your Defeat Gated Skills (Rallying Cry!).
Melee Skill Power Cost - more power means you can handle longer fights
Cry Power Cost - see above
Those are really the only “important” ones for a soloing weapon, and the only critical one is Pressing Attack Targets. You can make a case for Blade of Elendil Damage, Defensive Strike Armor, Pressing Attack Critical or Kick Cooldown here, but none of them are crucial, and the big winners for groups (To Arms Duration, Telling Mark Damage) are really pretty ineffective solo. (To Arms Duration is okay in a skirmish, Telling Mark is just useless - if you’re soloing, you’ll be using Revealing.)

Emblem:
Rallying Cry Cooldown - the single most critical Captain Legacy. Being able to use Rallying Cry every 15 seconds vs every 45 is MASSIVE. It means that it’s available for almost any defeat event.
Muster Courage Cooldown - Only if you’re using Strength from Within, but being able to give yourself your 10 second HoT every 20 seconds instead of every 30 is big.
Vocal Skills Healing - a very strong boost, since it improves both Rallying Cry and the Muster Courage HoT.
Other useful legacies include Healing from Rallying Cry and maybe Valiant Strike Morale Return (Not sure if the latter improves the HoT or not.) Again, several of the key grouping legacies (Healing from Strength of Will, Melee Skills Healing) don’t really play out solo.

Whoo. Too much information. x.x

Wow. I need to bust out my printer. Thanks!