Archive for Loremaster

Shhhhhhhhh! Whisper It Quietly!

Posted in Diary, lotro with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 30, 2012 by Corleth

Such is my level of enjoyment, when playing my elementalist in Guild Wars 2, that I simply had to choose one of my squishy spell-casters in LoTRO, in order to begin my journey through Rohan in a semi-familiar vein. In the end, I chose my loremaster, and even then I nearly gave up before I really got going. In some ways, I think I was looking for a reason to not play RoR at all, just so I could stick with GW2. Anyhow, I gave it a go, and this is how it’s gone…

The continuation of LoTRO’s epic quest line, introduced with ‘Update 8’, picks up in Lothlorien, in less than exciting fashion. It’s a typical LoTRO style opening, where you have to run from A to B, back to A, on to C, back to B, etc, blah, blah, in order to complete a quest that could have been handled in less than half the time if the designer(s) had thought about from the player’s perspective. Anyhow, I stuck it out and, eventually, found my way into Rohan proper. And then, shock horror, the fun started.

Update 8 - Continues the LoTRO epic quest line in Rohan.

Update 8 – Continues the LoTRO epic quest line in Rohan.

So, at this point, it’s worth getting a single fact out there…whisper it quietly, but *I’m actually enjoying Rohan*. The music is fantastic for a start, and I simply adore the auto-looting; open tapping is a nice extra too. Most of all though, I’m loving mounted combat. Heck, I hadn’t even thought about mounted combat until the expansion was actually downloading and many folks are comparing it to “trying to control Bambi-on-ice”, but I have to say I feel quite at home, to the point that I now feel naked when engaging enemies on foot. Whoever would have thought?! I’m currently using a light war steed with my now level 81 LM, and it seems to fit my mounted combat style well. Fast. Manoeuvrable. The job.

There’s a fair amount of comment out there with regard to the cost of the cosmetics for the war steeds, but I have no real interest in their cosmetic look so I can’t say I’m breaking sweat, one way or the other. That said, if you are into your cosmetics, the prices do indeed look exceptionally steep! I genuinely feel sorry for the likes of Hymne who have had a metaphorical bear-skin rug pulled from under themby Turbine’s pricing policy.

Falls of Rauros

Falls of Rauros

Elsewhere in RoR, now I’m a genuine free-to-play ‘Premium’ player, I’ve been unpleasantly surprised by some of the items that Turbine wants me to cough up Turbine Points (TP) for. A good example would be access to new guild crafting tier – Eastemnet. I’m thinking that once all of my crafters have maxed out their Eastemnet tier, I might subscribe again for a single month, just to avoid having to pay the 300 or so TP on 7 separate toons (Weaponsmith, Armoursmith, Woodworker, Scholar, Cook, Tailor and Jeweller).

The other ‘nasty’ that seems to have caught many folks, me included, is that the sixth bag (as and when Turbine get it working, allegedly in release 8.1) can only be bought once you’ve bought the fourth and fifth bags. Most VIP players, past or present, have access to bags one though five on their toons, but, critically, they still have to buy bags four and five before bag six becomes available to them in the ‘Store’. That’s worth a BIG ‘Meh’ from my perspective.

LoTRO - still very pretty

LoTRO – still very pretty

In general though, RoR has a real epic feel to it, and in terms of game-play, I reckon that it blasts the last two expansions – Mirkwood and Isenguard – out of the water. Not since Moria was released, has LoTRO made such a big jump forward. Graphically speaking, I’m not seeing anything too radically different in the landscape, but the demands of mounted combat are certainly pushing my two-year-old graphics card to its limits (nasty laggy stuff happening from time to time), so I’m now thinking that an upgrade is going to be necessary in the not-too-distant future. Time to start writing my list to Santa…

Update 6

Posted in Diary, Epic Quests, lotro with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 15, 2012 by Corleth

My poor neglected burglar. There he is, stranded in the ‘Shadowed Refuge’, without much hope of rescue. Having been played almost daily for the past month or so, levelled to within an inch of escaping Moria, he’s now been dropped like a hot Shire tater. All because of ‘Update 6’. He could shed tears…

2.6.8 - solo on my burg

2.6.8 - solo on my burg

But, nevertheless, ‘Update 6’ is here. My LoTRO client patched without issue last Monday evening, and now I’m looking at quite a bit of new content. Here’s my ‘To Do’ list:

  • Purchase the premium wallet (account wide purchase).
  • Pickup the ‘return to Galtrev’ skill.
  • Visit your crafting guild representatives to pick up new crafted relic, armour, jewellery, weapon & cooking recipes.
  • Run the quest in Glatrv to pick up your ‘Middle Earth Compendium vol III’.
  • Make crafted relics and apply.
  • Finish up ‘To catch an old goat’ deed.
  • Head off to Grimbold’s camp to pick up the epic quest line.

And here’s more detail on that list…

First and foremost, any toon based in Galtrev, should run over to the Dunland rep vendor and buy the new ‘Return to Galtrev’ skill.

Second, if you have 995 turbine points to spare, I strongly recommend buying the new ‘Premium Wallet’, too; this is an essential piece of LoTRO ‘kit’ if you have multiple alts. Possibly, it’s not so important if you only run one toon…either way, the implementation of this ‘Premium’ functionality is the real way that Turbine are financing their LoTRO operation during the first part of this year, in my opinion.

So what else? Well, guilded crafters should take a look at the new Westfold guild recipes (non-guilded recipes will drop as loot). New armour, weapons, jewellery, etc are all available in ‘Great River’ flavours. These, generally, are marginally better that their Dunland equivalents too. In the jewellery line, the most interest is probably being created by the new loremaster brooch recipes (drop only) which are the first items specifically geared for the LM’s ranged slot. These new brooches give pet buffs.

Westfold Brooches - Critted Versions

Westfold Brooches - Critted Versions

The new Westfold-tier crafted relics (for legendary items) are very nice. Running the ‘Forges of Isenguard‘ solo repeatable quest in Galtrev will net you your ‘Compendium  of Middle Earth, Volume III’, which can be used once per week by your guilded Westfold master craftsman to produced one of these juicy relics:

Update 6 has also changed the Warden class out of all recognition. My warden has been parked at level 48 for over a year now and, honestly, I can see me ever going back to her. It’d be like starting to learn a whole new class from scratch at this stage, and I can’t see me undertaking that exercise. The changes to the Rune Keeper class are also extensive, although not as severe. I played my RK for an hour or so last Tuesday night, and found no problem adapting to the differences.

Before setting out for the new region, it might also be worth finishing up that nightmare deed ‘Tracking An Old Goat’. Turbine have thoughtfully re-enabled the quests to complete this deed for anyone that didn’t managed it first time around. But hey, you only have one shot at completing it, ‘cos if you happen to log out before attempting the deed – poooof – it’s gone again. Fantastic testing by Turbine, fantastic.

So, having looked at all of the above, it might be time to try out some of the new quests. Update 6 brings us an extension to ‘Volume 3’ of the Epic Quest line. Picking this up where Update 5 left off, in Grimbold’s Camp (near Isenguard) quickly bring us into the new zone that has appeared to the south of Lothlorien – The Great River. So far, I’ve not strayed too far into this new zone, but from first impressions, it looks pretty enough, with plenty of standard-type quests. So far, nothing to get too thrilled about…but time will tell.

Finally, a bit of good new for my burglar. Enedwaith has now been tweaked, such that it’s now a level 61 to 65 zone – as opposed to just a level 65 zone previous to Update 6. This is good news for my burg, as it will provide an alternative to entering Mirkwood, once finished in Lothlorien. Of course, that will mean skipping the second half of Volume 2 and moving straight on to Volume 3. I’ll have to decide if that’s a consequence I’m willing to accept.

Mistress of Pestilence – Downed!

Posted in lotro with tags , , , , , , , on December 2, 2010 by Corleth

Well, my shiny new PC arrived last week. I’m very happy with it. But what I neglected to check when I ordered it, was the power output of the PSU (Power Supply Unit). The supplied PSU outputs a mere 300W, and my graphics card requires a PSU with an output of at least 400W. So, new PSU on order – *sigh*. In the meantime, I’ve been plodding along using my kids’ PC which, I truth be told, has at least allowed me to get in-game.

My major news from the last couple of weeks is that I was finally in on a run all the way through Dar-Narbugud with my kin, which brought down the Mistress [of Pestilence]. Added to that, my LM also completed the ‘Reaver of Dar Narbugud’ deed! The only slight downside is that I still haven’t won a roll for one of the 20 radiance armour pieces, even after rolling 20-odd times – but am I worried…? Nope!

The EU version of the autumn festival finished here in the EU last week, and despite trying everyday, I didn’t manage to get the skeleton horse on any other toon other than my warden. Still, one skeleton horse/pony is better than none – with the 1 in 100 chance of one dropping, per day, one is still an achievement.

I’ve also managed to run the majority of the newly revamped ‘Classic’ instances, at this stage. I’ve so far managed:

  • The School (HM)
  • The Library (NM)
  • Helegrod Giant-Wing (HM)
  • Helegrod Drake-Wing (HM)
  • Annuminas – Ost Elendil (HM)
  • Annuminas – Haudh Valandil (HM)
  • Great Barrow – The Maze (HM)
  • Great Barrow – Thadur (HM) 

But crash-and-burned whilst trying to complete:

  • Helegrod Spider-Wing
  • Great Barrow – Sambrog

I’ve yet to try:

  • Helegrod Dragon Wing (24 man)
  • Annuminas – Glinghant 

Out of the above completed instances, I’ve so far picked up a total of 8 Superior Third Marks – but have yet to decide what to do with them. I’m torn between bartering them for a Symbol of Celebrimbor, or for the new Helegrod armour pieces. Anyhow, so far I have to say I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the re-vamped Classics – they’re new, challenging and entertaining.

In my ‘spare’ time I’ve been working my way through Enedwaith on my main. I’ve now found all of the stables and am probably about two-thirds of the way through the zone on my main. So far, I have to say, it’s been very enjoyable – if a little ‘unchallenging’.

LM Re-trait and Relic Farming

Posted in lotro with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on September 7, 2010 by Corleth

With ‘Free to Play’ only a few days away here on the EU servers (it’s happening tomorrow on the US servers), I’ve been busy trying to get my LM through the last chapters of volume two, and the first chapter of volume three. So far it’s going smoothly, and in the process I’ve been working through the Mirkwood quest hubs; she’s now working on the quests out of Gathburz, plus approaching kindred rep with the Malledhrim, to boot.

I have to say that I’ve been really impressed with the DPS that I can now dish out with an LM, since equipping my long-overdue ‘Sword and Shield’ legendary trait (see my last post). Also, after listening to CSTM’s Lore master round-table, I decided that my class traits needed serous re-visitation too, so I’m now running with the following when grouping (and it seems to be pretty effective for soloing too – when I can’t be bothered to re-trait):

Dúnadan-learning
Beast-Lore
Proof against all ills
Power & Wisdom
Explosive Force
Fast Loader
Staff Strike

So, having moved away somewhat from the ‘Keeper of Animals’ trait line, I’m now using my Eagle pet almost exclusively, due to the additional flanks it seems to produce over and above my much loved Bog-Lurker (but I do miss those ranged attacks still!). My LM survivability has definitely increased too with this set-up – helped, of course, by the heals from the additional flanks that I seem to be getting.

Elsewhere, last weekend, I came across an interesting article on Doc Holiday’s blog detailing what he thinks is the best method of farming relics. Now, I have to say I’ve never been too bothered about relics – I’ve just slotted whatever I had handy, on each of my toons.

Hey, don’t get me wrong, I’ve always adopted what I thought was a pretty reasonable method of relic acquisition – levelling legendary items (LIs) to level 11, and then deconstructing them, and always having at least two or three LIs on the go at any one time. That said, I’ve never managed to acquire more than three level 7 relics on any single one of my toons, so I thought it was about time to try acquiring some level 8 and 9 relics….

The Doc Holiday method basically revolves around combing large numbers of level 1 relics, acquired via the deconstruction of tier 1 runics (‘Fused Bronze Relics’ acquired from skirmish reward vendors). So, if we say that a typical solo skirmish will net around 300 skirmish marks, and each tier 1 runic costs 23 skirmish marks to buy, and each tier 1 runic will typically net around eight level 1 relics, then a typical 30-minute skirmish will net approximately 100 tier 1 relics! When you combine these 100, you are guaranteed at least some crits, so from one skirmish you will typically gain a good batch of level 4 & level 5 relics, sometimes one or two level 6s, and occasionally a level 7 – all from a single solo skirmish….I like that! I’ll report on how I’m progressing towards my goal of level 8 and 9 relics, in my next post.

Sword & Staff

Posted in lotro with tags , , , , , , on August 27, 2010 by Corleth

After about five hours of grinding though Forochel and then Angmar, my lore master finally has her ‘Sword and Staff’ legendary trait – and mightily good it is too. I can’t believe I never missed it! Not only do you get the bonuses that the trait itself provides, but also the bonuses from whatever sword you equip – not to mind the additional attacks and subsequent DPS.

My LM also acquired the 10 radiance boots [from the Watcher set] on Tuesday night, after running both the Turtle raid, and Grand Stairs (HM), with my kin. She now has 40 radiance, and is back in Mirkwood trying to finish volume two, and gain Kindred with the Malledhrim. Finally, I even tagged along on my kin’s Sammath Gul run last night, and picked up her first two Dol Guldur medallions in the process…we didn’t manage to kill Gorothul, but it was fun getting there – and I learnt a load, including the importance of mezzing what and when I’m told, and the importance of stun protection on your tank…!

That’s it – nothing else to report – no other toons have been given an outing since my last post!

16th Hall for RK Classquest

Posted in lotro with tags , , , , , on August 23, 2010 by Corleth

I spent most of last week soloing my rune-keeper around Moria, recovering from the previous week’s raiding ‘overload’ (overload for me, anyway). I did manage to get into 16th Hall on Wednesday night, with my kin, and completed my level 58 rune-keeper quest, and killed all the bosses on the way. Unfortunately someone killed a bug in the battle with The Lost One, so we didn’t complete the instance hard-mode (HM). Still, not to worry – I was more than happy with getting the RK class quest out the way, and with the acquisition of four Moria Medallions (the first medallions that I’ve picked up on my RK). The 16th Hall trip also netted me about half-a-level’s worth of experience too, which consequently meant that on Thursday night, I hit level 59. I’m going back to the volume two book quests this week, in an attempt to at least get as far as 2.4.8….

The only other activity that I’ve managed is to bring my level 65 lore-master up to Forochel for some questing. This is fulfilling two requirements: (1) Acquisition of pages for my ‘Staff & Shield’ legendary skill deed (see previous post where I describe why this deed is still not complete!, and (2) the maxing out to 10 of some of my traits such as Empathy. I actually find it kind of therapeutic to solo around, picking of ‘grey’ quests for a while – absolutely no challenge involved!

Guards 1 – Thorog 0

Posted in lotro with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 10, 2010 by Corleth

I ran Helegrod for the very first time last night, with mixed kin group – the catch being it was an all Guard raid, and yes, we did start out with 24 guards! It took about an hour to get all 24 together – about 9 were from my own kin (Twilight Gathering), some from Hecil, and the rest from other kins. The raid itself took just over ninety minutes to run, with no wipes. We started off with the Coldbear, and then worked our way through all areas, killing all the bosses, and finally ending up with Thorog. Zandu was the only boss to cause us more than one death – due to the acid pool (?) she drops when she dies. Thorog took 1 minute and 26 seconds to down during which we lost only one of the raid, so at the end we had 18 or 19 guards left standing (only 19 ‘cos some had fallen by the wayside due to real-life issues…), and we took a group shot (see below) to celebrate the achievement. All in all, great fun – and I doubt I’ll see 24 guards on the charge again, for a while!

All Guard Helegrod Run - The Victors

All Guard Helegrod Run - The Victors

Over the weekend I levelled my rune-keeper to 57, and she’s now well on the way to 58. I took her all the way to the First Hall, back up to Balin’s camp site, then cleared out the Deep Decent quest hub (Silvertine Loads quests), and am now working my way through the quests out of the 21st Hall (Zelem-melek).

My Lore master has made good progress over the last couple of weeks too – I’ve completed 2.8.6 and am now starting to work through the Mirkwood quest hubs, together with skirmishing through 2.9. I’ve also downed the Turtle again, and run Grand Stairs a couple of times, and need just one Moria Medallion for my 10 radiance leggings.

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