I spent some good amount of time playing around in LotRO this weekend. Huzzah for no class work and no real life obligations!
I spent a good portion of Saturday roaming around the Ettenmoors as Lugzag, my Uruk Warleader, in preparation for the Vault's upcoming "Creeps and Keeps Event" (more on that to come this week). But on Sunday I took some time out to dig into the Epic Quest line in LotRO.
If there's any one feature that truly stands out to me from the throng of MMOs available, it's LotRO's Epic Story Quests. From your very 1st moments in Middle-Earth you are set onto an epic quest line that will presumably take you all the way to the level cap and beyond with expansions both free and paid.
I am simply stunned by the amount of care that has gone into these things and just how entertaining they've been. If someone was to ask me, "Should I buy LotRO?" I would tell them yes, and if for no other reason than the Epic Quest line. For once in an MMORPG, I don't feel like I'm just doing mindless tasks. Nor do I feel disconnected from the urgency of the fight against evil.
I never cared about the story in WoW past the Westfall Defias quests. I never cared about what my Hero or Villain was up against in CoX. In SWG, I cared more about my crap not breaking than I did about the Empire. In short, no other game has made me feel as connected to the world as LotRO does.
Anyway, I don't want to spoil the story or what happens for you. But suffice to say, if you haven't given LotRO a try yet because of all the talk about it doing nothing innovative. Take my word for it... if you're a fan of games with substance, LotRO's not to be scoffed at.
The Epic Quest line alone would make one hell of a game. The rest of the stuff, crafting, Monster Play, Deeds, loot... it's all just ancillary to what keeps me logging in day after day: A REAL CONNECTION TO MY CHARACTER AND THE WORLD.
I hope, in true industry fashion, more companies see the value of what Turbine's done and try to replicate it with their own games.