Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Teal Fireworks Laden Horse and Supergirl Launching

Well, well… I hadn’t spent much time at the 6th Anniversary Party because there was nothing new to get other than the Reveller’s Warsteed appearance (revellers-gilded-warsteed). However, yesterday, the Anniversary Party was extended until May 6 and new items were made available for bartering. The top billing on my radar was the Teal Fireworks Laden Horse!

There are also some new goodies that are modifications of similar goodies from last year that match this teal horse, including a cloak (5 tokens), another you-in-a-box outfit (10 tokens), a teal firework backpack (7 tokens), and a cake hat (10 tokens). I will go snatch them up tonight and give them to the lildanas to wear. To see previews of the cosmetics, go to CSTM (CSTM~new-anniversary-rewards) .

For now, on to the Horse!

The Teal Fireworks Laden Horse is a typical +62% speed horse with 200 morale, and is very much like the Fireworks Laden Horse (All the Steeds (special-steeds-62)). When bartering for him at the Games-Master, he is called the Teal Fireworks Laden Steed. I have no idea why these name discrepancies happen, but there he is. Here are a few pictures.

The new fancy horse and I go to visit my friend Elrond in Rivendell.

Ok, so Supergirl Red and Blue clashes a little with the horse’s green and purple. What I noticed when I headed back to the Moors was that the standard moors green outfit complements it really well!

We watch the Blood Moon rise in the moors tonight… a confrontation is coming…

Launching Beer Patrons
Since we had spent little time Partying this year, the lildanas were short on anniversary tokens and couldn’t instantly get the horse so off they went to Thorin’s Hall Beer Brawl. The beer brawl can be a lot of fun, especially when played with people who are trying to have a good time and not bent on spoiling the time of others. Thankfully, the lildanas found some like minded folks there last night in Tilley, Merdo, Dropsey, and Degenerate.

Danadelion got a few good launches, but I wonder if the big launches have been removed?  Also, I notice that outside the arena, there are no emotes allowed, because “it is serious business”.

In previous years, emotes were allowed over near Gisli, the Games-Master. Tilley pointed out that emotes are still allowed on the sides of the arena. Good to know! I had to scroll back to the 4th Anniversary Party to find some dancing pictures on Gisli’s platform. I knew I remembered it not being verboten before! :)

Some Launch Shots remembered!
I mentioned that big launches that were coordinated by a team were able to be executed in previous festivals. I didn’t notice anyone ever really being hit high in the brief time I was at this festival this year. I did promise pictures of previous festivals… because it did happen, lol! This next set is a time when I was hanging out with Superfriends at the 4th Anniversary party

Up, up, and away…

 Up, over the Dwarf statue…

Pressed against the ceiling… I wonder how high I would have gone if the ceiling hadn’t stopped me?

Over the dwarf’s head, off the ceiling, flying out of the room…

From ground launch… 

See the shadow rising as I approach the ceiling?

Over the dwarf’s head…

I also got to practice smacking others, I can’t have all the fun, hehe. Here is Aerlinneth having just dodged the dwarf head…

Kalamari exhibits a sonic boom effect as she rockets toward the sky…

And, I always got a chuckle seeing this picture of Lynrieth. She launched so quickly and so high that I nearly lost all visual on her; I caught this shot of her foot just at the top of the image.

Good times. Good times. May your Festival be high-flying fun! 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Update 10: T9 and Eastemnet Relics

Looking at some of the Update 10 changes... yeah, there were a lot of changes for Update 10 so I’m taking it apart one piece at a time. Scroll back over the articles from the past few weeks to see 1st Age LI bartering, Rohan Rings, New loot and Gear and instances, Mithril Coins and Hytbold, RK armor set comparisons, Virtues, and summarized U10 release notes.

Today, I will turn my focus on LI Relics. I wrote about them at Update 6 (update-6-relics-and-virtues) and then again when discussing shards (rohan-shard-queen-master-of-relicsand building a LI in Rohan (rohan-85-rk-building-li-weapon). Rohan was released since that Update 6 review and with Rohan came Tier 9 Relics and special Eastemnet (True) Relics. In the link, I showed that the relics were built on a pattern where each tier had similar relics and it wasn’t really a random collection of stuff.

Relic naming got smarter and now for Update 10, every standard relic was renamed to make it more obvious what the relics were and how the relic progression was laid out by naming similar relics of different tiers similarly with more obvious names. Granted, the designers are still more flowery than I am. For example, they still use a name like “Red Agate Gem of Fortune” (the T9 gem for Fate and Critical) and I probably would have called it something clever like “T9 Gem – Fate and Critical”. However, it is less wordy than its previous name, “Red Agate Gem of Untold Wonders”.

The naming convention now looks like this:
Setting of Will
Will + Mastery
Setting of Might
Might + Mastery
Setting of Morale
Morale + Mastery
Setting of Power
Power + Mastery
Gem of Endurance
Vitality + Critical
Gem of Dexterity
Agility + Critical
Gem of Fortune
Fate + Critical
Rune of Defence
Incoming Heal Rating + Block
Rune of Deflection
ICMR + Parry
Rune of Avoidance
ICPR + Evade

Tier 9 relics are reasonably easy to acquire. Three T8s combine to make a T9. Just keep plugging along acquiring relics and combining them and soon you will be rolling in relics. Until then, you will see that the T1 through T8 relics are all named similarly so you can get used to having certain relics with you.

If you don’t get the T9 relic you really wanted and you have a different T9, you can meld the one you want for 512 shards + 1 T9 relic. As in every tier, there are 4 Setting choices, 3 Gem choices, and 3 Rune choices. Note: I would never recommend any of these three rune choices for a RK (rune is the relic I vote most likely to upgrade to a special relic). Here are the T9 relics.

The fun continues when looking at the Eastemnet/True Relics. These are special relics available for level 80+ and usable only on LIs that are level 80+. The Eastemnet Relics are obtained by melding 3 specific T9 relics + 4992 shards. The True Relics are obtained by melding 4 non-specific T9 relics + 9984 shards. It might seem like a lot, but shards are really easy to get (refer to link, rohan-shard-queen-master-of-relics).

Similar to regular relics, these special relics have a sense of progression also in that you will find special relics at level 75, 70, and 65 (Westfold, Great River, Extraordinary). However, do realize that once you make a special relic, there really is no going back. They are not used in any other melding. Eventually, when it becomes obsolete, your only option is to Refine your special relic to shards. These are the Eastemnet and True Relics.

Relics are a high impact way to shift your abilities. Let’s look at a few examples.

Max Morale: The first example is the Relic set I chose at Update 9, which is a maximum Morale focus. One of the best ways for a RK to increase morale is to choose morale relics. Otherwise, with the gear that is available, a choice of taking a certain armor piece for its morale could have a huge impact on not getting other important aspects like Mastery or Critical. So, I chose True Setting of the North, Eastemnet Gem of Hope, and True Rune of the Dark Wood. So, what was its benefit of these three?

990 morale, 0 extra DPS Mastery, +1.7% Critical, 0 tact mit (+1.6% phys mit).

Max Mastery: Here is another example. What if I wanted to maximize Mastery? I might chose True setting of the Three Hunters, True Gem of the Rising Moon, and Eastemnet Rune of Power. The benefit?

0 Morale, +6% DPS Mastery, +0.5% Critical, +0.7% tact mit (+1.5% phys mit). And, +7.5% devastate magnitude.

A Mix: Since you have two LIs, you can push the limits even further. From above, on one hand, +2000 morale, or on the other, +12% DPS Mastery, or you could split the difference… and take max morale on one LI and max dps on the other LI.

A good blend of one set of three might be the True setting of the north, True Gem of the Rising Moon, and Eastemnet Rune of Power.

435 Morale, +4% DPS Mastery, +2.1% Critical, +0.7% tactical mitigation (+1.7% phys mit).

Cheaper alternative: Or, if you wanted to go cheaper, you could mostly avoid the Eastemnet True relics and stick with the T9 relics. Here is a set of three relics, two T9s and an Eastemnet (as mentioned, the standard rune choices are absolutely horrid for RKs and I cannot recommend getting any of those ever). With T9 Setting of Morale, T9 Gem of Endurance, and Eastemnet Rune of Power…

371 Morale, +3.8% DPS Mastery, +1.8% Critical, +0.6% tactical mitigation (+1.6% phys mit).

As you can see, there are multiple ways to bend the relic sets to do great things. What you don’t want to do is just randomly throw relics at your LIs. My best advice is to set a goal and work toward it! Happy Riding!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Reveller’s Gilded Warsteed

Party Time! The 6th Anniversary Party is fun! I must say that there is a certain relief that the festival is nearly identical to last year’s festival. Any deeds or quests or goodies that you didn’t get to do last year are still available. There is one exception: there is a new Reveller’s Wasteed appearance to be found in the envelopes quest in Bree. Most importantly, there is nothing broken, which is a big achievement versus some of the festivals last year.

I had the Reveller’s Gilded Horse from the store last year along with a matching outfit that I wear only on special occasions. The Reveller’s Gilded Horse is very fancy! It is one of my go-to horses I ride on momentous events such as the first time I rode to Rohan. So, when I learned that the Warsteed appearance would be in the envelope quest, I knew I wanted it.

This post was going to be a tallying exercise, showing how many Mithril coin resets it took to get the Warsteed appearance (yes, this quest resets at the cost of 5 mithril coins). I even had some clever titles in mind, such as “how many licks does it take…” or “can I buy a random drop?” However, unlike my typical unlucky rolls, I got the Warsteed Cosmetic Set for Reveller’s Gilded Appearance to drop after only 3 resets total across the first two days.

The Warsteed Cosmetic Set, when dropped, comes in a Bound box. Opening the box gives you the Reveller’s Gilded Halter, Caparison, Saddle, and Accessory. None of the Reveller’s Gilded Cosmetic Set is dyeable in any way; you either like the bright red or you don’t.

Picture Time!

Reveller’s Gilded Horse: Here is the Reveller’s Gilded Horse. He is obtained from the lotro store only. This horse does NOT drop from anything in-game. I included it in this set as a reminder of what it looks like and for those who are thinking about buying it as it is on sale in the store right now for the next few days! As with any steed in the game, do remember to come visit them in the All the Steeds Gallery.

Reveller’s Gilded Warsteed + Light Leggings of the Entwash, White Hair: Now, here is the Warsteed dressed in Reveller’s Gilded regalia. This shot features a white steed with white hair. Also, he is wearing Light Leggings of the Entwash, dyed Red. The horse legs looked a little naked so I scrolled through the list of leggings and thought these leggings matched the best. (Note: Light Leggings of the Entwash are free in-game; they are the quest reward for a quest in Entwash Vale called “In Defense of Eaworth”.)

Reveller’s Gilded Warsteed, Chestnut Hair: The Reveller’s colors are very light with gold trim (hence the name “Gilded”) and I probably liked the White hair the best. However, this Chestnut color with dark Chestnut mane looked really nice as well. I pulled his hat off to show off the shiny mane.

Reveller’s Gilded Warsteed, White hair, no leggings or Halter: The set comes with no leggings; I pulled the hat off while we rode home to get ready for the Party.

Reveller’s Gilded Warsteed, Party Dress: Getting this beautiful Warsteed was a special occasion, so time to change out of Supergirl attire and dress up. I watch the sun set on Falathlorn after changing into my Reveller’s Party Dress (lotro store).

A Circlet of Fresh-Picked Flowers (Farmer’s Faire barter) completes the ensemble for me to go enjoy a night of Party time at the Anniversary festival.

Cheers to you and may your Steeds carry you safely home!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Happy 6th Anniversary, lotro!

Hmm… Here are a few things going through my head to write about… RK traits, RK skills, all the LI relics, RK LI building tactics, the lildanas, my Ost Dunhoth and Dar Narbugud adventures, random horses, New Moria, New Bree and the Bree surprise…

But… the Anniversary party starts today and I decided to take the day off.

Good news concerning Anniversary gifts… the Festive Azure horse (Danania: special-steeds-62) that was given for free to players with 5 years seniority last year is being continued as a gift to those who have 5 years seniority now. Yay! If that trend continues (hopefully), I will get the Azure horse in March-2015! I tingle with anticipation. :)

Keep an eye out for CSTM’s Anniversary post! Time to fly!

If you need more to see today, visit last Anniversary’s article at happy-5th-anniversary-lotro.

p.s. Dana, remember to correct the Steed of the Champion basic horse picture because she is not a natural blonde sorrel.

Friday, April 12, 2013

1st Age LIs, Rohan healing rings, fans!

1st Age Legendary Items for level 85: Update 10 brought symbols for crafting 1st Age LIs for level 85. The symbols drop in Erebor Raids at level 85. When U10 released (03/06), the symbols would drop in T1 Erebor Raids. Turbine, deciding that was no good, pulled the plug on 1st agers in T1 for update U10.02 (03/20) and now they only drop in T2 Raids. While I gave it a shot, I was 0 for 44 T1 raid wins on receiving 1st Age symbols during the 2-week period. Sigh, rotten luck.

There are 3 ways to get 1st Age LIs:
  • Random rare drop in T2 Erebor raids (and T2 challenge),
  • Barter for it with Seals at the Skirmish vendor named “Legendary Items”,
  • Buy it from the AH since it is not bound. Right now, they are occasionally listed on Arkenstone at ≈ 1000g, yowsa.
So, your options are T2 Raid persistence & luck, earning the seals to barter via many of the 3-person, 6-person, or raid instances and skirmishes, or having a fat barter wallet and fluid AH market. Instances earn 2 – 10 seals per run. As mentioned in the previous article, having a few people around to group with, you can pick your favorite instances and make a fun time of it earning lots of various loot and seals in a short time.

Occasionally, I am able to have time to Raid and my kinship gathers for a Raid once or twice a week, so Random rare drop is not out of the question… I’m just not holding my breath hoping for a lucky roll in a T2 raid win. I’m actually very thankful that we are allowed to barter such an item. In olden days, random luck was often the only option to get nice things. I consider the barter option a huge step forward for the game.

There are 3 different Barter prices at the skirmish vendor for a 1st Age symbol:
  • Win on all three T1 Erebor Raids (Defense of Erebor T1 deed), then barter for 488 Seals.
  • Win on all three T2 Erebor Raids (Defense of Erebor T2 deed), then barter for 427 Seals.
  • With on all three T2 Challenges (Defense of Erebor Challenge), then barter for 366 Seals.
At this time, I do not know anyone who has won all three T2 Raids at level 85 or the Challenges though I wouldn’t be surprised to see someone show up with a post on youtube one day in the not too distant future. There are a couple of videos out there showing The Fires of Smaug T2 Challenge now. The T2 Lonely Mountain feels impossible, lol.

Here is what my “The Road to Erebor” deed looks like right now. It is worth a horse to complete the Meta-deed… so, it is on my list. Granted, it is on my “long-term” list, kinda like Tower of Orthanc and Dol Guldur level 85 T2 Challenge, both of which have horses that I need to acquire. Someday… someday…

Eswe’s new healing rings.
In the previous post for Update 10.1, I mentioned that Eswe had a couple of new Healer Rings (u10-rohan-rings-complete-hytbold-in-15)  so I wanted to show what they look like for comparison. Clearly, one is for Minstrels and RKs and the other one is for Captains. The RK ring takes the same Sage upgrade path explained in the post on Rohan Rings. 

Supergirl SuperFans!
I really am excited when people tell me that they are fans of the site! I hope I come across politely. Sometimes I am carrying on up to a dozen conversations at once so hopefully I say thank you and am cordial if we meet. :D

Here are two people I met this week:
Parnassica is leader of her kin and had kind words to say about the site. Thank you! Forgive me that I am not the best at taking pictures of hobbits… I often just get the tops of hobbit heads.

Arkandon was playing the part of “bird in a tree” when I flew out to Ost Guruth. I am amazed that people figure out how to climb up trees and on buildings. I am sure he will do great at “Ridge Racer” in Eregion when he gets there. ;)

Goldenstar and Merric talked about danania.net on a recent podcast (CSTM: episode190) and Tomrica transcribed it for me. It is quite the great situation when the lead in is that I am fans of my fans. Really though, I am of all my fans, just not all of them run a Mecca-site like CSTM, lol! Tsk, tsk… I’m going to have to remind Goldenstar what my name is… mebbe I will put it in my blog title and website name… oh wait… :D

Here is the transcription from that section of the podcast:
(in reference to the new store horse, steed-of-dagorlad and CSTM: steed-of-dagorlad-available-through-april)
G = Goldenstar & M = Merric

G: If she didn't tell me it was the sea blue color, I would have been like, oh ok... where's the color?  Oh and I should say that the color screenshots I got from Danica.  She is a blogger who sent me it.. and you can find it at... oh wait, it's not Danica...

M: It's Dan-an-eee-ah... it's the Super-Girl of Lorien.

G: It's the Super-Girl!  I always just call her Super-Girl!  D-a-n-a-n-i-a.net is her blog.  So she was nice enough to send me screenshots of what it looks like dyed.

M: Yea... she's a biiiiiiig horse fan.  She's awesome.

G: Yea... yup.

M: She's a great blogger, if you are not following her, you need to follow her.

G: She's super nice, she was like, "Do you need a picture? Here you go..."

M: Yea.. if you are not following her, you need to - it's at D-a-n-a-n-i-a.net

My Note: I don’t know how to write in phonetics, but it is… Daaah-naaah-nEE-aaaah :)

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Update 10: New loot, gear, and jewelry and Update 10.1

Battle for Erebor - Laugshat

In continuing from the last few articles on Update 10 new information…

Update 10 new items!
Update 10 brought in 1 new 6-person instance called “Bells of Dale” and 3 new Raids: Battle for Erebor, Flight to the lonely Mountain, and Fires of Smaug. While these are fun, what I liked most about Update 10 was that great loot is spread across nearly every instance in the game!  For a group that knows the instances, many of the instances (even challenges) are able to be finished in very short time (I was in a group that was finishing Sambrog entrance-to-looting in under 6 minutes). That really picks up where some of the skirmishing left off with quick runs (fastest-skirmishes-marks-per-minute).

Concerning new items, Eggolass of lotro-wiki assembled a great checklist of new items available as of Update 10. See the link here (lotro-wiki: Update_10_Item_Checklist).

Great Barrows - Sambrog

The Epic (gold) items are fairly rare. I had the good fortune to acquire Cardolan Rune-keeper’s Leggings from Sambrog in the Great Barrows. I spied on other Runekeepers to show you two other pieces: the Ring of the Honourable Rune-keeper (was dropped in School at Tham Mirdain) and this Hat of the Lonely Mountain (not Epic quality but really great for a healing RK, from Fires of Smaug).
Leggings from GB, Ring from School, Hat from Smaug

I was surprised how many of these teal items in Eggolass's list I have seen just in running typical 3-person and 6-person instances, though I have not seen all 6 Epic gold RK pieces. I am sure there might be an uber RK out there somewhere that has all six Epic RK pieces: hat, gloves, legs, robe, earring, and ring.
Sword Halls

Similar to what was shown in the previous article on RK armor sets (update-10-runekeeper-armor-sets), there are many possibilities for building a good set of gear as lots of the teal pieces are relatively balanced with one another but emphasize different stats. So, it is possible to not run the same instance very often but find a great selection of items.

Fornost - Wraith of Fire

As of April 3rd, Update 10.1 is now in effect.
CSTM is on the case with PDFs and links to the Release Notes. (CSTM: update-10-1-release-notes)

Some details to note…
  • Flight to the Lonely Mountain instance works now. It had been disabled since the day after Update 10 released (March 6).
  • The previously fiddled with Fate/Power balance has been retinkered, undoubtedly to make power consumption a factor again. I can't tell the difference; power is a non-factor still, and I'm totally ok with that.
  • RK: “Scribe New Ending” skill that was changed for Update 10 has been rechanged for 10.1. It has been “strengthened” to bring it on par with other dispel effects.
  • There were multiple various bug fixes and “improvements”.

Annuminas - Ost Elendil, because I think the purple is pretty