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LOTRO Review

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PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2007 9:06 am    Post subject: LOTRO Review Reply with quote

I have fond and distinct memories of my Mother's horrified look as I walked around the house singing "Where there's a whip, there's a way," and even more fond memories of the humorously bewildered look as I tried to explain her where I got the phrase from. A few years later, I had the pleasure of being able to read the books that these fantastic movies came from, and further enjoy the tales of Tolkien on yet another level. In the recent past, the new movies have brought the story even more to life with epic Hollywood flare. Turbine takes Lord of the Rings Online to the next step - we've read about the world and we've seen movies of it, but in April 2007 we get the chance to gather our fellowships and embark on our own adventures and tales in Middle Earth.

I've played a range of games from UO to WOW and what holds my attention more often than not are the diversions and the community - I have Centipede and Space Invaders if I want to sit around gaining points and leveling. LOTRO seems to have drawn a lot from existing popular MMOGs and added in a range of extras to create a familiar yet unique game world.

The following categories will receive a numerical rating from 1(worst) to 10(best), and a brief summary of why I rated it how I did. These ratings and impressoins will be from my perspective - that of a casual gamer.

Races (9.0) - "Who are you going to believe, me or your own eyes?"

The races are the standard fare of hobbit, elf, dwarf, and human. Elves... oh, elves. Turbine spared us the exaggerated stupidity of several recent MMOGs. Female elves have clothes, male elves don't look like goth rejects, and both the donkey-ear handlebars and the double bowling balls for breasts are pleasantly absent. Turbine refrained from making the race a legion of promiscuous attention whores, and for that I thank them very much. Humans, are your middle of the road race. As usual, they're average at everything and can be all classes. Dwarves, are the short little stocky guys that you know and love. Hobbits are neat. They are the little busy folk that really add life to the land. You'll notice The Shire seems to come alive with both player and NPC hobbits. Appearance choices for each race change based on the place of origin you choose for your character. My old dark-skinned brown-eyed Gondorian looks extremely different from my pasty white green-eyed redhead gal from Rohan.

I gave the Races a 9.0 because there isn't really any way to improve on the races other than to make up some new ones and that wouldn't fit in the lore too well. While they are the same races we are used to, they managed to make them less annoying and irritating than in most recent MMOGs.

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