I’m a Middle Earth Tourist

I’ll admit it, I enjoy visiting places in LotRO just because I want to visit them.  Thus, when someone in my kinship asks if there’s any interest in an instance run, I usually sign up as a standby, in case they need an extra person.  I just enjoy visiting instances – developers put a lot of work into them, and they are usually pretty well polished.  Usually.


As I mentioned in my last post, Burhhelm volunteered his sword arm for a Moria instance run.  It turned out that he was needed, as a few people did not show up.  No problem, I grabbed a few extra potions and was ready for action.  First stop: the Grand Stair.

I’ve never seen all of the Grand Stair.  People only hit a few bosses to complete the “hard mode” quest and grab some medallions.  This trip was no different – and for a group with multiple level 65s, it is no real challenge, so long as you have enough fear removal potions and enough healing to go around.  It took longer to get the group together than it did to complete the fights – not exactly exciting.

Since the evening was young, someone suggested that we hit Skumfil, a dungeon in the Foundations of Stone.  I’d never been to this place, so I was pleased to go.  Besides, I have been toting around the final Martial Champion quest for over a year.  Skumfil is full of bugs and fish monsters (who resemble the Deep Ones from H.P. Lovecraft).  If you have weapons with bonuses against insects and beasts, then you’re set.  Almost.  There is one catch: this place is buggy (as in computer bug, not insect) as heck.  Our tank would run up to some mobs, hit them once, and the mobs would sink into the ground and leave the whole group stuck in combat.  This happened three times – two times, this could only be fixed by the intervention of a GM.  We completed the Minstrel and Champion quests, but wow – avoid this place unless you have no other option.


Stuck in combat mode, Burhhelm considers going postal on his fellowship


I was going to turn in, but someone asked if we could hit Ost Elendil.  I was game – I am quite familiar with the place, now.  No surprises, the whole instance went smoothly as we gradually ground each set of mobs into the turf.  The theme of the entire instance is pulling mobs into the sunlight to crack their defenses, then pulling them into starlight to finish them off.  Except for the final boss, that is – just beat him down in the sunlight.  I guess he sunburns easily.  I just hope that the Annuminas marks went to good use.


A different group, different instances.  Well, mostly.  We visited Ost Elendil again – always a pleasure, and almost always an easy instance.  We were hampered somewhat in all of the instances on Sunday due to the Captain in the group being out of practice and geared with level 60 stuff.  Actually, I don’t think the gear was the problem; they just hadn’t done enough grouping lately to really work with everyone as a team.  He fought as if he were solo, without assisting with the healing or removing crippling fear effects.  I thought our poor Runekeeper was going to have a nervous breakdown while trying to keep up with the healing on their own.

After finishing Annuminas with only one group wipeout (there really should have been none, though), we went through each of the Great Barrows instances.  We failed the challenge in both the Maze and in the second instance, which was frustrating.  We did manage to finish Sambrog’s challenge, though.

Are you ready for the bizarre part?  A Symbol of Celebrimbor dropped in all four instances that day.  I created a new Runestone for a friend and a new Rune for Burhhelm – which I immediately tossed in the vault in disgust after identifying it.  It was just that bad – it only had only two legacies, one of which was +block/parry in Ardour, and the other was Dire Need cooldown reduction.  I’m impressed, I don’t think I’ve ever crafted something so useless. 🙂


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