Durin’s Day in LOTRO

So this weekend is the time of Durin’s Day in Lord of the Rings Online and there’s a Deed available if you visit the monument in Erebor where the thrush tapped on the stone on Durin’s Day, when the light of the setting sun revealed the secret door (in The Hobbit) The deed is available until Monday 22nd October, 2018.

I visited on several characters before taking my Captain, Diaspora there and summoned a load of characters to claim the deed (while promoting the Charity LOTRO Twitch stream, currently raising money for Extra Life)

I got this lovely shot on Diaspora, showing the spot and the one place in LOTRO where you see the sun and the moon at the same time.


Blaugust Day 24 MMO Pet hates

MMO rant time, my pet hates.

Min maxers – While I take no issue with people that choose to squeeze every last point to get the best possible dps, I do object to people expecting me to do the same. I play a game to have fun, not to study builds and spreadsheets. I used to play board games and tabletop war games with someone like this and it annoyed the hell out of me while he pored through rule books during his turn to find some obscure rule he could exploit.

Players doing slayer deeds and not acknowledging you – Mob grinding is the same in most MMO’s but in Lotro, unless you get a hit on a creature or are grouped, you won’t get credit for that kill. If I see someone killing multiple mobs in an area, I always offer to group so we are not stealing each other’s kills. It’s a simple courtesy to at least respond. When they don’t, I see red. (Especially when they then make more of an effort to AOE tag every mob before I can get a single hit in.)

Ore ninja whingers – In Lotro, Ore nodes are on a first come first served basis. If I get there first, don’t message me calling me rude. Your Rune is not etched into the stone! Same goes for the Treasure Hunt. If I get there before you, bad luck.
Trolls in world chat/ being accused of trolling – I learned the hard way not to poke the Trolls in World chat but if someone offends me in some way, I will speak out and I have been called a troll for doing so!
Drama in kinships – This I cannot abide and I’ve been on the wrong side of it too many times, usually resulting in me leaving the Kin. Keep your RL issues out of my game and don’t ask me to pick a side, as most likely it won’t be yours.

Do you have any pet MMO hates?

This post is part of the Blaugust 2015 initiative. If you are interested in taking part, all the information can be found by clicking the logo below.

H1Z1 First Impressions

For the first time I’ve decided to get involved with an early access game, a few days in to the much talked about Steam Early Access Alpha of Sony’s Zombie Survival game, H1Z1.
I heard about this game some time ago and being a fan of The Zed Genre in general and played to bits Left for Dead 1 and 2, it really piqued my interest. When news of the release of forerunner, Day Z came out with it’s horrific PVP making it a griefers holiday, I was excited that not only would H1Z1 focus more on crafting and building but would have PVE servers. Being the Care Bear I am, I was sold and when the opportunity to get in early in the game’s development appeared, I jumped in, having watched a few Twitch streams first (and reading about Belghast’s experience, over on Tales of the Aggronaut)
Being early access, I was ready for a battle to just get in the game, and it was that. A couple of hours fiddling various settings but eventually I got in. Finding a medium populated PVE server, I was thrown in to field of blackberries with nothing but my wits.
I won’t lie, there was a definite feeling of excitement entering, something I’ve not felt from a game in some time. I had no clue where I was or what to do, but I set about picking blackberries, knowing food would be scarce, and found a nice solid branch for a weapon. After filling my pockets, I spotted a deer, so started stalking it. I couldn’t get close enough so set about sprinting, trying to smack it down. I failed miserably. Hunger was setting in and the blackberries weren’t cutting it. I stumbled across a road  full of deserted wrecked cars. Searching about twenty, I found nothing. It’s hard to know if that’s as intended, they’d be ransacked already or it’s just bugged. Either way, it was disappointing. Soon enough I found a town, a deserted church offered nothing until I spotted a police station. I figured there must be an armoury of some kind, if not a gun in a desk somewhere, so I moved in, dodging the odd zombie on the way.
I searched every desk and drawer and went to the basement where I found the armoury. Nothing. Again, cleared out or bugged, but very frustrating. Hunger had almost killed me, so I headed upstairs, noticing wooden spikes on the stairs. I must have stepped on one, as I collapsed onto them and died.
Not a great start to my career, but it was fun if frustrating. I had to log out and have been unable to get back in following a patch, something a number of players have reported.
Overall, I’m enjoying H1Z1. My main complaint, aside from the lack of loot, are the zombies. Graphically they are not great, Left 4 Dead did a better job, but I’m assuming that will improve as the game develops. They are also not especially active. One stood stock still, arms out, staring at me then vanished as I got close. The patch today has apparently dealt with loot issues, though not much use to me if I can’t log in. Hopefully will get to try again tomorrow.

Online Games: Literature, New Media, and Narrative – Coursera 2014

Last year I joined a course via Coursera, Online Games: Literature, New Media, and Narrative run by Jay Clayton of the Vanderbilt University.

It covered a range of topics related to the “remediation” of literature into other forms of media, notably gaming, and this ties with the courses connection to Lord of the Rings Online. Through the course, I joined Landroval, a second permanent server for me, and made some great friends.

The course is due to run again for 2014 and if you have any interest in trying an MMO or learning more about the subject, I can’t recommend it enough. It starts on 14th June and runs for 7 weeks. It is free and of course, LOTRO is a free to play game, so it’s not going to cost a penny.

If you want to sign up, join us on Landroval. We have a Kinship, a guild, dedicated to course members called the Courserrim. Leave a comment or drop me a line @jestrosneak on Twitter if you need an invite.