lord of the rings

See: Lord of the Rings Online

The Daily Grind: What was the most disappointing MMO expansion of all time?

Best and worst, top and bottom: It’s fun to discuss video game in absolute extremes (at times). And I’ll bet that a lot of us only really remember the most excellent MMORPG expansions and the most disappointing ones.

So let’s grouse today and dredge up past heartaches. What was, to you, the most disappointing MMO expansion of all time? A few come to mind for me. Star Trek Online: Delta Rising was a narrative and structural mess that bogged down and made me desert it. I know that I was really let down with how RIFT: Storm Legion developed, faltering hard after a strong start. But probably for me, Lord of the Rings Online: Mordor took the cake. The publicity for it was atrocious, the actual expansion about as far from “fun” as I’ve ever experienced in an MMO, and the difficulty of moving and progressing was aggravating.

But that’s me. How about you? Which MMO expansion do you want to rag on today?

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Lord of the Rings Online talks Update 23, Mordor’s difficulty, lag, and more

Now that Lord of the Rings Online has emerged from Mordor, it’s preparing to go back in the future. SSG’s Rob Ciccolini and Jerry Snook opened up about next couple of updates with MMO Central, teasing an epic confrontation with the giant spider Shelob. Before this takes place, however, Update 23 is going to deliver what sounds like a new region and lots of new instances.

“Our next update will move towards the Grey Mountains, but as we expand we expect to have some reference or maybe even a short appearance because that will be the beginning of [Shelob’s] storyline,” said Ciccolini.

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Check out these jaw-dropping LOTRO panoramas

One of the true joys for many Lord of the Rings Online fans is being able to explore an intricate and often gorgeous-looking Middle-earth. While many screenshot folders have been filled with LOTRO vistas over the years, one player has taken it to the next level by piecing together spectacular panoramas of the landscape.

“Tolkien has put so much detail into creating Middle-earth. That’s why I decided to tag my screenshots with as much detail as to name of places, mountains, rivers, and the many things that Tolkien envisioned in Middle-earth that are present in LOTRO,” wrote Joego.

Check out several of these below, and for the rest, make sure to swing over to Joego’s Facebook page.

Source: Facebook. Thanks Joshua!

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Lord of the Rings Online celebrates its eleventh birthday

Not that Hobbits need much of an excuse to throw a party, but it just so happens to be Lord of the Rings Online’s 11th birthday this month. That means that the super-charged anniversary celebration is back with its treasure hunt cards and other festivities.

Free gifts are for the taking, too, for any player who logs in between now and March 31st, 2019. That is not a typo; you actually have a full year to get these goodies.

The anniversary event came with Update 22.1, which adjusted the new fiddles, added a new Bardic fiddle as an anniversary award, fixed the Lake-town fishing deed, and fine-tuned the chat filter.

Source: LOTRO

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Jukebox Heroes: Five great YouTube channels for MMO music

As a collector and reviewer of MMORPG soundtracks, I owe a great debt to fellow music lovers who take the time to somehow extract files from the game directories and make these tracks available to the world at large. YouTube has been an invaluable treasure trove of MMO music, thanks to these devoted fans, and I thought I would give some of them props today for their hard and continuing work.

While there are plenty of channels where you might see a person post a playlist at one point for a single game, there are a handful of YouTubers who see their mission to continually post new music for ongoing online games. Today we are going to look at five channels and the game soundtracks that they cover. We’re talking hours and hours of music at your fingertips here, so set aside your plans for the rest of the day and get listening!

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One Shots: Fun with filters

You know all of those weird filter effects that you have in your photo editing software? There always seems to be a stigma against using them, mostly because they’re very noticeable and showy. But today, let’s cast off that stigma and just have some fun, eh? After all, this is a column that begins every week with a black-and-white version of the headlining photo.

And that photo this week is from Deekay, who showcases the lighter side of life in Sea of Thieves. “Finally a selfie of my pirate as she dances on the bowsprit!” he write.

One leg, choppy seas. There is no way that she didn’t fall overboard and drown about thirty seconds after that screenshot was taken.

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The Daily Grind: Which MMO NPC do you love to mock?

Hell hath no sarcasm like MMO gamers who find a particular NPC to be a little too annoying, repetitive, or otherwise goofy. Then the memes crop up, ire is unleashed, and no one from that point onward can take that character seriously.

Some of the more notable MMO NPCs that I’ve loved to mock include Guild Wars’ boneheaded Prince Rurik (and his nutcracker mouth), the oh-so-very-very-slow Sara Oakheart in Lord of the Rings Online, and as of late, the “there’s much to be done” Khadgar in World of Warcraft.

Let fly your quips and quibbles today by ripping on one or more NPCs from MMORPGs that are completely mock-worthy. Why do they annoy you and what have you and your friends said about them?

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Sea of Thieves conscripts Sean Astin and plans a death tax

Citing “unprecedented numbers” of players rushing in to play Sea of Thieves over the past few days, Rare has acknowledged the multitude of issues that have cropped up since launch. These include access difficulties, delayed rewards, delayed achievements, performance problems, and missing items.

To take your mind off of these troubling portents is Lord of the Rings and Stranger Things actor Sean Astin, who stars in a trio of short trailers in which he takes a tour group around the “Museum of More Pirate.” Samwise Gamgee the Pirate? We thought Hobbits couldn’t swim!

The team also indicated that it will patch in a “death tax” in an upcoming patch as a gold sink for players who die. The specific rate has not been established, but it sounds as though players will have to pay a variable fee depending on how they kicked the bucket.

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Lord of the Rings Online releases secret goat quest

Leave it to the sly folks at Standing Stone Games to slip a little spring surprise into Lord of the Rings Online.

The studio behind the Middle-earth MMO teased players with the foreknowledge that there would be a special and secret event on March 21st. In quick order, the community rooted it out and discovered that it was a quest that led to the acquisition of a new type of armored goat mount. Cue lots of collaboration between players and servers to solve the puzzle.

The particular quest is called The Secret Stone and requires players to have completed the introduction to Northern Mirkwood. To complete the quest, riddles and codes will need to be solved, but the community has already done the heavy lifting on that if you want the answers.

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One Shots: Don’t you forget about me

I think that we can all agree that Hirku seems like he’d be a pretty fun-loving dude to hang out with in World of Warcraft. We would all get cooler just by association, and he would take us on these crazy adventures where we’d log in the next day, find ourselves naked in some unfinished expansion, and have no recollection of what happened the night before.

I mean, look at this picture! “Ordinary” does not suit this party pirate’s life at all.

As a side note, I am completely jealous of players who have the ability to take great screenshots using fun emotes. Trying that usually results in me taking a picture of my character’s left ear from an extreme close-up view.

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Lord of the Rings Online team works on future ‘far-flung adventures’

Having some issues with Lord of the Rings Online Update 22? A small patch released on Wednesday may have cleared it up. The small patch contains a couple of dozen fixes to various quests, systems, and NPCs that came with the Northern Mirkwood expansion.

Destructoid recently touched base with Lead Designer Ben Schneider, who discussed the current Northern Mirkwood update and the future direction of the game. Schneider said that the team is bursting with ideas for where LOTRO can go from here.

“We will continue to fill and illuminate the map with those far-flung adventures, and the great news is that there is plenty of map,” he said. “Following up, people tend to skip ahead to the Scouring the Shire after the fall of Sauron. But there’s a lot more to explore — from Arwen and Aragorn having a wedding to the reign of Aragorn, new king of Gondor.”

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Massively OP Podcast Episode 161: Project power

On this week’s show, Bree and Justin roll up their sleeves and take on projects left and right. It’s a look at the announcement of Project C and the imminent early access launch of Project Gorgon, among many other exciting developments this week!

It’s the Massively OP Podcast, an action-packed hour of news, tales, opinions, and gamer emails! And remember, if you’d like to send in your own letter to the show, use the “Tips” button in the top-right corner of the site to do so.

Listen to the show right now:

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One Shots: The Soviet Summoner

Undoubtedly, our world is poorer in this post-City of Heroes era for the lack of pun-inspired superhero names that used to run, fly, and jump rampant through this game. Maybe NCsoft realized that the world as a whole was about to hit a pun shortage and pulled the plug on CoH before it could drain us of that precious resource.

In any case, BigAngry submitted this museum-quality screenshot as a reminder of the days when the name could make or break a hero: “In the waning days before the fall of City of Heroes, I took video of all my characters using their powers, so I took a screencap of the video of Soviet Summoner, who was a Demon Summoning/Trick Arrow Mastermind. Her demons, IIRC, were named after Russian cities, with the big demon named Chernobyl, of course! God I miss that game.”

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