Gaming News

Warriors of the Westfold: Our Introductions to LOTRO

Several of us here at the Middle-earth News are huge fans of The Lord of the Rings Online, the popular MMO from Turbine. Some of us have been playing for years, while others have only recently stepped foot into the virtual realm of Middle-earth. But regardless of how much game time we’ve logged, one thing is certain: we are all completely hooked! That’s why we’ve decided to start posting LOTRO-themed content each Wednesday, from guides and opinions to progress reports and back stories for our many (and I can’t emphasise many enough) characters.

We’d like to begin by sharing our first impressions of the game – how we discovered LOTRO, which class(es) we play, and more.

ALICE

I started to play LOTRO in July 2013, with no experience of video games or MMOs (only several years of The Sims). I started loving this game since the beginning because I was so happy to be able to travel across Middle-earth. And it was my only purpose, I never liked those games where you need to fight and kill, so I only looked for easy quests, taking too many screenshots.

Many festivals crossed my path, but I didn’t participate because I understood nothing. I kept going here and there with my elf hunter (my first character) without understand the real purposes of the game.

Fortunately my friends of Middle-earth News took care of me and explained me many things about LOTRO. So I created a second character at the end of 2013, a Hobbit Hunter (after several rehearsals I understood that’s my favourite class) and I quickly leveled up.

Now I have two characters at the same level and I cannot decide who is my main character. I changed my mind about fights and now I can’t wait to level up and become stronger while I explore Middle-earth.

Asphothel

ARWEN

I entered the LOTRO world in 2011 not having ever played a MMO/RPG game before. It was an entirely foreign gaming experience to me, considering the only other kinds I had been exposed to growing up was Atari (go 80s!) and N64. It didn’t help much that I was attempting to play LOTRO on my little netbook, either. The game kept freezing and when it would finally unfreeze, I’d find my character had been killed by animals or baddies I never saw coming.

But despite the setbacks, I was hooked. To be able to traverse Middle-earth and “visit” the places I had envisioned in my mind while reading Tolkien’s books was spellbinding. And it wasn’t just the landscape that captured my attention, it was the little things Turbine incorporated in game, such as conversations between characters, winning bacon, talking to Tolkien, meeting the elves, and gaining XP for having a snowball fight. The list goes on.

Three years later, I now play on a computer that can handle LOTRO’s graphics, which makes for a much nicer experience. I am a VIP player and my main is an elf hunter around level 53. Being a mom of two, I’m not able to log on as often as I’d like, but when I do I quite enjoy festivals, questing, buying way too many house decorations, and spending a ridiculous amount of TP on cosmetics. I am over-the-moon excited to be a part of the Warriors of the Westfold kinship, and can’t wait to get started on decorating our house. LLL – Long Live LOTRO!

Floramay

BRITTA

My LOTRO addiction began in 2009 when I purchased a new laptop for college. It was by no means a gaming PC, but it handled the game just fine until I was able to upgrade to an even better system. It was my first MMO, but I picked it up very quickly and immediately found myself hooked; even after trying out all of the other popular MMOs, LOTRO remains my favourite.

I started out on Vilya, but in 2011 switched to Landroval to check out Weatherstock, and I’ve remained on that server ever since. I am thrilled to be part of two amazing Landroval kinships, the Lonely Mountain Band and Warriors of the Westfold. I’ve played many other MMOs, but I’ve always found the LOTRO community to be the nicest and most helpful. And with players routinely arranging in-game events, there’s never a dull day on the Landroval server!

My main – and easily my favourite – character is my Hunter, Bregolad. I’ve also got a Captain, Beornara, and a Champion, Brittanyia; recently, however, I’ve been focusing on my Rune-keeper, Beruthien, and getting ready to send her through Moria. One of the greatest things about LOTRO is that even the fourth time through, the locations and storyline never get old or boring.

Beruthien

MARIA

I’m relatively new to LOTRO. Not many people around me were playing it before I joined Middle-earth News. I’ve heard of it, but had no idea what to expect and it somehow never occurred to me playing it. Until a few months ago. Several people from the team were talking about LOTRO with such an enthusiasm that I decided to give it a try. Even though it took me a while to learn how to walk and there is still a lot for me to learn, I love the game and can’t get enough of it. My main is a female Hobbit hunter, currently at level 23. In other words, I’m still a beginner. Before I continue, I’ve actually never played a MMORPG before. What I like about LOTRO and these type of games is that I’m able to decide when, how many and what kind of challenges I want my Hobbit to undergo. I decide my own pace and that is, for an awful gamer like me (according to my sister), just perfect. Of course, exploring Middle earth was a main reason for me to start the game. I’m pleasantly surprised that I’d become so obsessed with the game. We’ll see what the future will bring to my Hobbit and myself!

Lilloa

MYLA

Rachel, one of my fellow Middle-earth News reporters, was actually the person who first told me about LOTRO. Not long after, I made my account ( this was a little over two years ago). I never played any type of MMO games before so I was both excited but very skeptical.

My first character was a hobbit minstrel named Tirza. To say I was a bad player is an understatement, I had NO IDEA what I was doing. I couldn’t even get past the bears, I kept dying! I also made a hobbit burglar, though I can’t remember what his name was. I ended up taking a very long break from LOTRO because I was so upset at how horrible I was.

Roughly a year later I deleted my first two characters and created my elf hunter, Malyndael. I slowly made my around the Shire and Bree enjoying it just fine. School eventually got in the way and I took yet another break. When I came back I made a hobbit guardian, Alellea, and that is when I started to love the game. She’s now my main and is only a few levels away from 50! I’ve tried out the hunter, minstrel, burglar, lore-master and warden classes but guardian is by far my favorite. I plan on eventually testing out all the others!

Alellea

Rachel:

I first got into Lord of the Rings online a little over a year ago. My brother was actually the one to introduce me to it (he had been the one to introduce me to Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings in the first place).

I made my character a hobbit minstrel named Elwssa on the Landroval server. At first I started playing the game with the idea that I could just walk around and experience Middle-earth. It quickly became apparent to me that Middle-earth wasn’t simply pretty scenery: even the Shire was a pretty dangerous place. Eventually I got sick of sticking to safe zones in the Shire. I realized that the only way for me to ever reach places like Rivendell or Lothlorien I would have to fight and quest to level up and gain reputation with various factions of folk across Middle-earth.

As Elwssa became stronger, the game became even more fun for me. I could actually explore areas without worrying that a single wolf bite would do me in.

Even after nearly two years of playing, I still don’t have a single character at the level cap. Rather, I enjoy taking my time and experiencing Middle-earth. Also, I love housing and I have various houses that I like to decorate. Something about having my very own hobbit hole is quite appealing to me.

I’ve grown up playing videogames, but LOTRO was my first experience with an MMO. I have found fellow players to be helpful, welcoming, and especially on my main server- Landroval- there’s always someone up for roleplay. It is so wonderful to get lost in the beauty and vastness of this game and I appreciate every minute of it.

 

Do you play LOTRO as well? Leave a comment below telling us about your experience in Middle-earth (screenshots are highly encouraged!), or Tweet us @MiddleEarthNews with the hashtag #WestfoldWednesdays!

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9 Comments

  1. I started 4 years ago after seeing an ad for the game. I made an elf hunter because I wanted to be able to shoot from afar. Having no experience with MMORPGs, I thought that was the best idea. In the elves easy place, where you start in Celondim, there’s a vineyard with goblins in it. I went there when the quests took me there, and I could not kill a goblin without dying.

    Now Huleth is lvl 95 with awesome gear, spiffy traits, and over 3000 agility. I have an 85 Cappy (Because I’ve not lvled her yet) and a Mini 2 levels from cap.

    I spend a lot of time on LOTRO, it’s my only online game, and it’s amazing.

    • Alice Greenleaf says:

      I always died because of the Wolves in Ered Luin, but now I can kill them with a shoot!
      (Hunter Elves are gorgeous ;))

  2. I started lotro in May last year, tried out a burglar hobbit and just couldn’t get the hang of them, than came Ritelgold my directionally challenged hunter hobbit who was my main character for a long time. I later on tried out burglars again (another hobbit named Ritzelgold) because my former kin had a lack of them) and suddenly I fell in love with the class! Ritel’s at 91 and Ritzel’s 95 now, so I’ve decided to try out a dwarven runekeeper (who likes to crash parties at Bree in a dress) and a hobbit guardian (okay I might have a hobbit problem!)

    All my current toons are withywindle players but I’ve been thinking of trying out either Landroval or Laurelin one day. I’ve met a lot of awesome and fun people on lotro and I’m glad I picked up this game because of that!

    • Alice Greenleaf says:

      I’m giving a second chance to burglar class right now. I created a Hobbit and I like so much the skill that allows you to become invisible!

  3. I’m a big gamer in general, but MMO’s tend to bore me. But I stick with LOTRO almost solely because it’s Middle-earth! And there is no real better reason than that.

    • I started playing LOTRO because it LOTR. It’s the only game I play; I tried SWTOR, but it wasn’t the same. No rings above heads to indicate quests! I was lost. LOTRO makes sense because of LOTR, and it’s so much fun to explore the landscape.

  4. Very sad to see that you didn’t mentioned the Britta-mower on Nimrodel, Britta…

    Great post btw! I look forward to Wednesdays now!

  5. Ive been playing LOTRO now for 6.5 years. Ive never played MMOs before, and was a little shy at first, levelling one of my main characters a Loremaster.. All powerful and in control of the fight. Shortly after I levelled the character I now play most, a minstrel.. I love the challenge of quick thinking healing. Since then I have a Captain, Runekeeper, Champion, Burglar and Hunter all max levelled!

    One of the most exciting moments for me in LOTRO is visting a noteworthy place, like Weathertop, Rivendell, Moria, Caras Galadhon, the Meduseld. I feel at times like a tourist in Middle Earth!

    I enjoy the questing, I love talking and meeting lots of LOTRO players and fans and ofc one of my biggest loves is PvP Where you get to really challenge yourself playing against people and not computers!

    I must say I’ve made some amazing friends from across the world immersing myself in the world of Tolkien! 😀

  6. Zebrina Fernwillow says:

    Great article — really glad to see that you’ll be featuring LOTRO articles going forward; it’s a perfect fit for MEN, and a niche that’s been needing to be filled for a while now, I think. Looking forward to reading more.

    As for myself, I played for some time on Landroval but have been away for a while due to other responsibilities such as work, mommy-hood, etc. That being said, I’ve recently been thinking about going back in…trying to decide if I should attempt to remember how to play my old characters or just start off fresh with some new ‘toons since the most recent expansion seems to have changed so many things.

    I do think it’s great that as time goes on there are more women gamers out there; when I first started playing MMORPGs (more years ago than I’d like to say), it was pretty darn scarce. Not that I mind running with whomever, but I do think “Warriors of the Westfold” is rather cool, and very encouraging to see that the ladies aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty. 🙂

    Anyway, if you’ve got some “low-levels” and you’re looking for a companion on Landroval maybe you’ll look me up for a run some time…would love to have some buddies to help me bang on the baddies; would be fun to have a Geek Girls’ Night Out!