Cranking up the other Turbine

Sunday, I felt not that interested in playing DDO again. My bard and Rogue/Wizard are both at the right level to group with my friends, and I don’t want to start yet another class. So I looked at the icons on my desktop and realized I hadn’t played LotRO online for quite some time. I also had read a post by Wilhelm, in which he talked about the revamped Evendim, and the southernmost area of Oatbarton, where he did a lot of hobbit-chores.

Hobbits? Quests? And gift mathoms? I’m so on it! And my Warden was 30, just the perfect level to start! So I logged in. The login screen indeed told me it had been “1 month”. It might round up a bit, but still, wow! That long? Oh right, I was on vacation in the meantime.

You start the Oatbarton quests with a breadcrumb quest you get in the Lone Lands. I assume you can also start right away, but I had this yearning for some old-fashioned travel. So I didn’t port over there (with my special Warden spell), or took the pony express. Rather, I rode on my own terms from Bree, where I started, to the Forsaken Inn, and back via Bree, Stock, and Brockenborings, to Oatbarton.

I went there...

...and back again.

You have reached your destination.

Yep, this looks like my kind of town!

And there were a lot of chores to be done. The big market was just around the door, and there were still a lot of things that needed to be done. To name a few, I:

...herded chicken that had run away (note the tilted chicken, from when the hands have already gone back to their original position, but the chicken hasn't despawned yet. Cluck?!)...

... crushed grapes (while getting my groove on!)...

... and churned butter. Which seems to be physically demanding. See how Hiltibrant wipes his brow? Maybe it would work better if you weren't in full armour.

The final tally, after having fun doing some chores for hobbits, was 27 gift mathoms. But wait, what was that? I was sent off to Oatbarton’s little sister town, just north: Dwaling. The glass blowers from there were supposed to present their wares, too, but it seemed they were in a bit of a pickle. They are going through their own housing crisis, with some unseen investor having bought up most homes. The city is not in a good shape, and overrun by human ruffians. They even locked up the public holes! Of course, I had to help. I don’t have pictures from that part (stab stab kill stab etc), but after I taught the ruffians a lesson, I was approach by a glass blower to help them restock. After collecting some sand and other materials, I even was allowed to take a shot at glass blowing myself!

This is more difficult than it looks, and it already doesn't look easy!

Of course, I was a natural talent at this trade. Ahem. As Mr Glass Blower told me: “Well, I am not quite sure what we can do with this. Perhaps it could be use as a tray to ash one’s pipe after smoking. A useful thing, if not the most glamorous of objects.” I claim that as a success!

Speaking of success, the Dwaling quests awarded another 13 gift mathoms, so I had a grand total of 40. That was quite a bit of experience, and as a result, I’m now an ally of the Mathom Society.

The mandatory "reputation spam" picture.

Overall, a very fun night. I wish there were more nooks hidden away with quest lines such as these. But I haven’t even visited half a dozen areas in earnest so far, so there’s still lots of things to be found! On the side of tangible benefits, with rested XP and the Isengard pre-order trinket for 25% more XP from mob kills, I made almost 3 levels in Oatbarton and Dwaling. That’s pretty nice, too.

Right now, I’m itching to try out my minstrel again though. Or maybe roll something now? Maybe a dwarf or elf, to try out their starting area? We’ll see.

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