LOTRO Legendarium: Five fun secrets hidden in Moria

    
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Making your way through Lord of the Rings Online’s Moria can be a unique experience — for both good and bad reasons — but these days players are more focused on getting through it and out to the sunlight on the other side of the mountain range than exploring every nook and cranny of this underground realm.

And to be honest, there’s not a lot here to reward the diligent explorer. While Turbine-of-yore did a tremendous job with Moria’s scope, the team back in 2008 clearly had more pressing concerns than to populate the region with lots of hidden Easter eggs as it had done before and since.

Still, there are a few secrets to be found in Moria if you know where to look, and some of them are actually pretty helpful (or at least amusing). In today’s column, I’ll be taking you on a tour of five of these hidden gems underneath the mountain. How many have you discovered already?

1. The Chamber of the Crossroads well

For about the longest time, I never gave this giant cistern any consideration. You know how that goes, once you’ve passed by an object a couple of times, you stop seeing it altogether. I simply thought it was just another environmental decoration that sort of reminded me of the well that Pippin (Merry?) knocked that Dwarf skeleton down in the movies.

But it turns out that this is one well that actually serves a function, and that is to kill you. You can either stumble or jump down it and subsequently discover that this well leads all the way down to the Water-works. That would be an amazing shortcut if you weren’t pancaked upon arrival, but at least you earn the “Well Traveled” title for your troubles.

2. Moria’s pits

Speaking of jumping down holes that your mother told you to avoid, Moria has plenty of places to test your fear of heights — and you can earn a deed from them! There’s a hidden deed called The Pits of Moria that challenges you to find the bottom-most pit in six different areas. You won’t see anything update in your log, as it is hidden, but if you leap into the right pit some text should flash on the screen informing you of your great accomplishment.

So what do you get for being a crash test dummy? If you find all six pits, you’ll earn a whopping five LOTRO points — and the “Blind Leaper” title. Actually, that’s pretty cool. I might have to get it!

3. Floid and Dewitt

Continuing with the theme of earning strange, out-of-the-way titles, part of “The Wanderer” title can be earned in Moria. Floid and Dewitt, the famous man-and-horse explorer duo, have made it to Moria ahead of you and can be found just north of Jazârgund near the Endless Stair. If you’ve never found these two before, this discovery might set you off on a pretty fun scavenger hunt that spans all of Middle-earth — and has a sequel as well!

4. The Twenty-First Hall tavern

What if I told you that there’s an incredibly exclusive bar that’s been right over your head in the Twenty-First Hall all along? ‘Tis true, and its patrons have been sneering down on you for over a decade now.

This unnamed tavern can’t be accessed by any normal means, so you’re fresh out of luck getting there — unless you’ve obtained the Moria Keg from the Spring Festival. This special piece of furniture will randomly teleport you to seven different places across the game, with this tavern being one of them. And once you’re there, you might as well drink up, because there’s no way out other than jumping to your death or mapping home!

5. The Silvertine Lodes painting

I love seeing the random bit of mob wall art that pops up here and there across the game (most notably in Goblin Town). There’s one painting that you really should scope out, and that one is plastered against the wall in the northern goblin area of the Silvertine Lodes. If you inspect this closely, you’ll see that it is actually a mural of the rise of the Balrog (or Mazog, it’s hard to tell) and the subsequent expulsion of the Dwarves from their kingdom. That seems like something these foul and bitter goblins would celebrate!

Every two weeks, the LOTRO Legendarium goes on an adventure (horrid things, those) through the wondrous, terrifying, inspiring, and, well, legendary online world of Middle-earth. Justin has been playing LOTRO since its launch in 2007! If you have a topic for the column, send it to him at justin@massivelyop.com.
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Alex Willis

To be fair to Turbine-of-Yore, part of the reason there aren’t a lot of easter eggs is that we just don’t know that much about Moria in the first place. All that we know about Moria specifically — its layout, its history — can be fit into less than 5 pages of text, and most of that (in classic Tolkien fashion) is more about the rulers/kings than the place itself.

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starbuck1771

I have been to all of those places. I will tell you however the info on the twenty first hall tavern is incorrect. There is a way up there other then the keg. It is basically a huge maze puzzle.

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Schlag Sweetleaf
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zoward

After reading about the Chamber of the Crossroads well, I knew I had to try it out for myself. I brought my level 63 pacifist hobbit burglar (Paphi) back into Moria. I travelld to the Chamber all the way from Echad Eregion (closest teleport point I could find). I jumped in, activated “Safe Fall”, and gently floated down into the Water-Works, got my 5 LOTRO points, title and deed … and was immediately transported to the Waterworks respawn point. Dang!

Totally worth it.

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styopa

I will always treasure Moria as one of the seminal, terrific moments of my mmo history. That said, I will also say honestly that by the end, the impact on me as a PLAYER was comparable to how it was for our characters: it was such a pure joy to finally leave that place and climb back into the beautiful lighted world.

I don’t think that was an accident, either.

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Tanek

Players: “Yay! We finally get back out into the sunlight of the Dimrill Dale!”
Turbine: “Let’s make the quests send them back into Moria for a couple months before Lothlorien.”

Moria was then and remains now one of my favorite game expansions, but yeah, after a while everyone had enough of the mines for a time. :)

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zoward

LOL – I remember that! I was so ticked off at Turbine at the time! I still tend to spend until 53-54 or so in Eregion and then bolt for Lothlorien at 59.

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Tanek

Last time I jumped into that well, I survived the fall, so it is possible! :)

I do not remember that painting in Silvertine. I will have to check it out to see if it is something I’d missed. Thanks!

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zoward

How did you survive it?

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Tanek

I am really not sure. Lucky landing? Another person jumped in with me and went splat.

taradyne
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taradyne

I survived it on my main too but have no idea how or why. Have not survived it on any of my alts lol.

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Makhiel

I simply thought it was just another environmental decoration that sort of reminded me of the well that Pippin (Merry?) knocked that Dwarf skeleton down in the movies.

That is in fact the exact same well, only in the movies they merged the Chamber of Crossroads with the Chamber of Mazarbul. (And Pippin threw a stone down, not a dead Dwarf)

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Eliandal

Thanks for this:)! Moria is no where near the slog it was a decade ago, so maybe this time I actually will poke around for a while (instead of trying to simply get out ASAP;)!