Monday, 18 April 2011

Ost DundundunDUUM

Previously, on Raid Channel: Balrogs have wings now lol

Our kin has been plowing slowly but steadily through the newest raid in LotRO; Ost Dunhoth. It's been a nice raid so far, although it does feel like a theme park ride with a ton of reused encounter concepts. In that sense though the whole LotRO game is starting to get old; after the latest update landed I found myself wondering "is that it?". Run new instances, get new barter stuff, get the couple new shinies in those instances with stats a point or two higher on our previous gear, grind all those until you have everything. Oh, a new Legendary Item, must grind! Oh, I need 2000 instance medallions for this armour set which will be obsolete in a few months anyway! HMMMMM.

Yay, back to hunter tanking! I totally have never done this before in a boss fight!

That line of thought got me wondering if I'd even have the energy to grind through the next update, or the Isengard expansion after that, if it's just the same stuff in a new (but deviously recycled) package. I do think LotRO is going to need some seriously new mechanics, be it mounted combat, dynamic events, enhanced pvp or even just a character model update to stay fresh.

Golden showerpoison wing boss. Fun fight, even more so on T2.

Anyway, back to OD. So far I've seen and beaten the first four bosses, two of them on T2. The boss fights themselves are a good challenge and the hard modes will definitely be a tough nut to crack (we've only got one T2 challenge done so far).

I must say though I've been very disappointed in the loot so far, at least for hunters. The regular, non-raid instances don't really seem to have any must-haves for hunters so I've been more tempted to run them on my alts. I haven't yet seen all the OD loot and the hunter armour set sure is sweet, but I'm really put off by the medallion grind, especially since I just burned my meagre collection on Empowerment scrolls to upgrade the godawful first-ager LI you see here on the left. I was seriously considering just throwing it into the bin and grinding a few weeks for a new one!

Oh well, I thought I'll just grit my teeth and do it — replacing every single legacy on the bow and then upgrading them to t5+. If only it had 4 or 5 major legacies! But no, NO I can't have nice things.

Well, the grind is over, now I'll just have to complete the raids and I'll be happy - for now.

Meanwhile, cooling my toes in a place that starts with R and ends with T. More on that later.


  1. I agree about Lotro becoming somewhat stale. I'm not much of a raider (mainly because of time constraints and the rewards aren't incentive enough for the time involvement, to me), but I definitely felt that staleness with the most recent update.

    I mainly play lotro for story, and with Biowares TOR coming out soon, I'm not really sure what inventives I'll have to stick around, as Bioware's story telling is, imo, infinitely superior. I don't like grinding at all, and that's all Lotro seems to be now a days. Were it not for my lifer subscription, I'd probably drop the game, but the fact that I'm in it for good will probably keep me around, at least during updates.

    But you're absolutely right, we haven't seen anything fresh or new since skirmishes, and even those are a grind in and of themselves.

  2. Ah I love your screenshoots so much!
    Can't seem to make lotRO look like that, even on my BF's gaming rig... not sure why really :(

    I myself am enjoying the new raids and instances quite a lot and I think they are a positive change. Boss and challenge mechanics seem to be novel and fun for a change, for the most part.

    I am still refusing to get into anything LI related though. And Still waiting for GW2.

  3. Thank you for the comment Cherrie - I always admire your screenshots as well!

    I actually really like the new 3-mans, but the 6mans are a bit too much of a slog in my opinion. Especially the HM of Lost Temple takes way too long and I still haven't been able to complete T2 of Sâri-Surma because the very last boss fight has always bugged out on me :/.

  4. Oh Saru-Surma bugged out on as as well, but on Turbine forums Devs suggested a work-around for the time being - make sure you kill all the adds in 2nd boss fight before killing the boss himself (not just the lieutenants).

    I like Lost Temple a lot - it reminds me of Indiana Jones movies!
    But yeah, all things considered, it takes a tad too long... Especially the challenge.

  5. The sad thing is, mounted combat is going to be relatively nothing new either. Just look at what we have in game, and see how mounted combat fits in. Take horse skill, and merge into legendary weapon, add some sellable outfit slots. And ding, we have new wonderful levelling horsey who has buyable outfit slots and different skills which hmm, slot into it's armour slot, stirrup slot, saddle slot and crafted blanket slot (given to tailors since they are currently utterly useless in game so they needed to give them something to do) :P

    A major issue is also how they broke the game in MoM, and still haven't done anything to address things. The game in SoA was pretty well designed for character types. And since then we've had nothing but dodgy fudges (when we get anything at all) to take roles off different professions and give them to others. And doing them over so badly that quiet simply losses don't get replaced, or worse...replaced with skills off other professions. It's a joke!

    Then we get to Isengard. Ok fun...or so it seems. But after BG and such, it sadly is probably going to be recycled. And how far will they go to push lore to make things more gamey. New mounts, we get to ride ostriches! or something like.

    As John said above, LOTRO's big thing is the epic storyline. Recent changes have "tweaked" it and shattered it. Fragmented parts now with little feeling other than a chore now. I recently sent an alt through the early books and it's now a mess. There is no epic feel. It's just rushed through with rapid teleports between locations to make it easier and simplar and you have no thought or notice. It's simply pathetic.

    I sound like everything's bad. It's not. The biggest problem LOTRO has is focus on where the game wants to be. Turbine seem's to believe to compete with WoW it needs to become WoW. And simply put that is suicide. Why would a user leave WoW to go to a game which is a half assed copy of WoW? Look at the games which have succeeded against WoW. Eve, Rift? they do it by going there own way, not copying. LOTRO at launch cut it's own way and with MoM lost that. Isengard needs to recapture it's own direction, and cut a new path which is unique, independent and new. We have a new Game Director and hopefully, she can give us this. We can but hope!

    Grats if the 1stager btw...well if not for the legacies and the future grind for another (again).

  6. I'm still nowhere near endgame content or seriously getting bored of the game, but yeah... LotRO is great, but even after playing it for a while it still feels somewhat generic and too grindey for me. I guess I just got used to GW too much. :P

    What keeps it fun for me is the kin I'm in, where there are a few awesome roleplayers who can make any generic deed grind run into an adventure. Need to kill a 100 Hillmen? "Right, yer lousy little peasants! We'vse got a band of rogue Hillmen, show 'em what yer got! 'N if ye want t' please Master Arundar, get at least one of yer lot killed!" Much more fun with a group of people who get in character to play a disgruntled Militian meatshield for the occasion. :P

    Every game comes to an end eventually. Hopefully you'll be able to find something new and fun before LotRO becomes too stale. :)

  7. Thank you for the great comment Nyadach! I agree with what you said, especially about the mounted combat and the direction the game seems to be taking and the direction it probably should take.. interesting times ahead though, what with the next update just outside the door (late May, they say).

    Hehe Pery, your kin sure seems like they're having insane amounts of fun :D. That's the kind of community spirit that really makes a difference.