LotRO: Riders of Rohan – Preview

LotRO: Riders of Rohan – Preview

LOTRO LogoRiders of Rohan is the latest expansion to the successful free to play MMORPG The Lord of the Rings Online. It is set in Tolkiens Middle-Earth and continues the epic story right up to the point where The Fellowship breaks apart and they each go their separate ways to destroy the Ring. In this expansion, players can join the Rohirrim and ride the vast Plains of Rohan; build alliances with the Ents of Fangorn and help Éomer, the adopted son of Théoden, in his attempt to protect his homeland against the growing Shadow.

The stunningly designed green grasslands of Rohan are divided into three areas: Amon Hen, the edges of the Eves or Fanghorn and the great Eastern Plains. All of which have their picturesque villages you can visit. If this has inspired you to take your hobbit children on a cozy afternoon of bird watching, you’ll be severely disappointed, because battles with the Orcs, Uruk-hai and other such scum awaits.

Lord Of The Rings Combat Magic

Because the environment is so vast, horses have an important role. Riding a horse will not only allow you to move faster, but you can also fight whilst in the saddle. Unlike the standard horses previously available, players will be able to own their very own War-stead, a Mearas, which is the same breed as Gandalf’s horse Shadowfax. For the dwarves and hobbits are pony variants available. Fortunately, these are as strong and fast as their bigger counterparts. Your steed is customizable with a custom saddle, paint and patterns in its manes and much more. More importantly: your horse levels up independently and has its own combat skills.

War-Steeds come in 3 flavors: light, medium and heavy. Light steeds are fast but have limited health points; heavy steeds pack a bigger punch but are slower; and, as you can imagine, medium is somewhere in-between. Mastering your horse, and choosing the correct one for your play style, is very important as the creators, Turbine, discourage you from walking. Most of your enemies are now mounted and are almost impossible to beat if you’re on foot.

These new and faster horses will also be available in the older parts of the game world, albeit not for combat. Other additions to the game involve a raised level-cap from level 75 to level 85, 400 new quests, a heraldry system, the appearance of Gandalf, a daily quest system and let us not forget the vastly improved graphics complete with redesigned lighting engine!

LOTRO Combat Sword

In conclusion, this expansion will bring some amazing updates to the game, some of which will be available for players on the free to play version. The closed beta has made quite an impression on me and LotRO: RoR is turning out to be a must-buy for the core members of the Lord of the Rings Online community. Be aware though, this expansion focuses heavily on end-game content, so new players are better off completing the thousands of quests already available as free to play content in Hobbiton and beyond first, before making the purchase.

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