Weaving the Threads Together

So far, I have played through almost all of the Prologue, but I have not yet traveled to the Shire to begin the part of the journey that follows in Frodo’s footsteps. As an Elf, I began my experiences in LOTRO hundreds of years before the events of the Fellowship, fighting not against Orcs and Sauron, but against Dwarves. They had attacked Edhelion, the city where my character, Elyon, lived, and I was able to take part in the battle and witness the destruction of her home. Then, the story moved forward to the ‘present’ day–the time period where LotR takes place. A group of elves, including Elyon, had returned to the ruins of Edhelion, hoping to bring back to the place some of its former glory, but after finding some dwarven weapons among the goblins scurrying about the place, she was dispatched to the court of the dwarf Frerir, a friend of the Elves (but not of the Dourhands, another dwarven faction that ruled the area).  After helping the dwarves with various preparations for winter (such as cutting lumber and skinning auroch hides) and weeding out some problematic inhabitants that the Dourhands were not taking care of (mainly poisonous Skorgrim’s Bloom flowers and goblins), Elyon was able to meet up with Elrohir, a son of Elrond, who had discovered that the Dourhands were attempting to bring Skorgrim, their dead leader, back to life in exchange for allying themselves with the forces of Angmar. Elyon joined forces with Frerir’s dwarves to stop this from happening. Tolkien only knows what comes next…

Overall, I felt that the experiences my elf went through were very relatable to the world of LotR, with a few exceptions. First of all, the fact that Elyon was present at the destruction of Edhelion really made her feel like a real elf, who would have memories from hundreds of years back (as Elrond does of the first defeat of Sauron). The NPCs (non-player characters) were all concerned about the land, as elves are, and though they gave me tasks to do, the tasks (like clearing out the slugs from the pool) made sense until I ‘discovered’ the dead goblins with the dwarven axes. After the journey to Frerir’s court, however, the side quests made very little sense. If there was such urgency in finding out what the Dourhand dwarves were up to, why would I chop firewood and make auroch jerky? The dwarves would be perfectly capable of such tasks themselves, and if Elyon’s mission were really so urgent, she would not be asked to do such mundane jobs. So, that sort of broke the nice storyline I was playing out, though I did see the need for her to get experience fighting monsters and for her to level up a bit before leaving the Prologue for the ‘real world.’ The rules of the game interfered with the suspension of disbelief I was experiencing at the time. Or, not exactly the rules, but the necessary mechanics of playing a game interfered with the flow of the story and thus with my suspension of disbelief.

At first, there was almost no connection to the events of LotR, but as Elyon progressed in the storyline I began to see more and more threads connecting her journey to the one depicted in the book. At first, the only similarities were the fact that elves and dwarves had ancient grudges, and that the elves were struggling with living in Middle Earth (as evidenced by the sad attempt to rebuild Edhelion). Basically, she was living in the same world as Frodo and the Fellowship, and that was it. Then, there was Elrohir, seen only a couple of times in the book, but still a part of it, and the alliance of the Dourhand dwarves with Angmar–a province of evil, allied with Mordor and home of the Witch-King in LotR. So, as the journey went on, Elyon’s seemingly separate path began to merge with that of the Fellowship–a common desire to see the Free Peoples survive and to defeat the forces of darkness. The quest to stop the Dourhands shows the largest leap yet towards the merging of the storylines of Elyon and the Fellowship, as confronting any sort of force from Angmar would directly relate to confronting the forces of Mordor. Now, I just have to keep playing and find out what’s next on Elyon’s journey through the Third Age of Middle Earth.

Dacia

Another Elf Bio.

by Kyle Osborne

Here lies a brief account of Deuil sole survivor of The Brothers Five. Also known as my avatar in The Lord of the Rings Online:

One of five brothers, Deuil is an ancient elf born in the early days of Middle Earth.  In ages long past Deuil was known, along with his siblings, for his involvement in The Brothers Five. These five brothers were a powerful force and were well known in the early days of Middle Earth. In the defeat at first battle of Beleriand, Deuil witnessed the slaying of his four brothers, and the destruction of The Brothers Five. While his loss was great, Deuil survived to see the end of Morgoth’s reign.

After the loss of his brothers, Deuil laid down his bow and began to take an interest in the finer aspects of life. As the age passed Deuil developed a strong love for the wearing and crafting of jewelry as well a small interest in the preparation of foods.  While this time of artistic peace calmed Deuil’s spirit, he would later find purpose again in battle.

As war mounted against the Dark Lord Sauron, Deuil found need to march into battle once again. He fought valiantly in the battle of the last alliance, reminding all of his brotherhood’s prior accomplishments.  Even with the defeat of Sauron, Deuil knew that as long as the one ring was allowed to persist, war would come to Middle Earth. But as with all elves who share a love for peace, these thoughts faded as he returned to his simple pleasures.

Now as Deuil sees the events unfolding in Middle Earth just as they did in each previous age. He has makes his decision, it is once again time to loose his bow against the fires of Mordor and the tower of Angband.

I Heart Elves.

Super Late Post By: Lynne Moody

The classes in LOTRO are very important in supporting Tolkien’s narrative. One of the first things a new player does is select a character class to play as. Though, if a newbie isn’t familiar with different classes, they might choose a class that doesn’t fit their personality and want to switch later. I think that the classes/races of characters in the novel are important signals of the characters’ personalities. We all know that elves are mystical and mysterious, and dwarves are feisty fighters.

Tolkien highlights the differences among the different races, and many of these highlights are shown in LOTRO as well, such as appearances, hobbies, and dwellings.  These crossover characteristics help the reader/player relate the novel to the game and vice versa.  Therefore, the different classes definitely enrich the storylines of LOTRO and The Fellowship of the Ring.  Every class has different adventures depending upon where their race lives in Middle-earth; however, everyone eventually ends up doing the same tasks. Every race interacts with each other, be it friendly or on battle terms.

I, personally, love being an elf. They seem magical, sleek, lovely, and intelligent all at the same time. However, one aspect I don’t like is that they seem very sneaky and elitist. The Human class looks too boring and life-like to me, while the dwarves, gnomes, and hobbits are too tiny for my tastes. Plus, the elves are my favorite class in the novel, mainly because they provide so much assistance to the fellowship so many times.

Go elves!

Hobbits are Moochers and Dwarves are Worse

By: Sam

 

Themostknownunknown was a lowly elf champion born into Rivendell. Eventually my character was allowed to expand his horizons, moving on into human realms in Duillond and Falathorn and beyond, however, many of the characters along the epic quest prologue were of elven descent. It was not until a quest sent the avatar into the Shire that he began integrating into the cultures of Middle Earth as a whole.

The fact that the hobbits around Hobbiton and the entire Shire were willing to offer an elf quests suggests racial acceptance in the community. One must wonder, however, if the quests were just given to the character so that the pests around the NPCs home would go away or so that the NPCs remedial tasks could be accomplished, because the same quests were offered to all races. With this in mind, there is still no guarantee of racial equality between elf and hobbit, although they do seem thankful after the quests completed for them. Dwarves on the other hand are very brusque and harsh towards my elven avatar. The brutes are constantly asking, “What I’m doing there?” or “What do I want?” when entering the dwarfish encampments. There is even a rogue group of Dourhand dwarves who my elven character had to fight at Haudh Lin.

Despite the fact that some of these races seem to not be on the best terms necessarily, there is still a theme of good versus evil. This ultimate quest to destroy evil allows for a sense of immediacy in the game as the player is focused on questing against the bad guys. It is interruptive, however, when certain races offer different treatment than others, as one does not know what to expect verbally from the looks of an NPC. Maybe immediacy is affected. It all depends on the gamers’ level of focus at the time…