Despite the strong similarities to World of Warcraft, the game is about a thousand times more absorbing to me, and there's real joy -- and trepidation -- in discovering the vast world they have created. So far, the game has revealed maybe a quarter of Middle Earth -- Gondor, Rohan, Mordor, etc. By the time they're done with the expansions, the scale of it all will be really, really massive [
The world, the music, the atmosphere... all quite excellent, . And while I wish it had some of the features that I used to like about Ultima Online, such as the ability to craft just about everything and the ability to buy houses and influence the world around you, the crafting doesn't feel quite as limited in LOTRO as in WoW. You don't need to be in a guild to get -- or make -- all the good stuff.
There's still plenty of time to start playing -- about a week is left in the free beta. Plenty of time to get a character up to the level 15 cap, and enough time to see how fun this game can be at the higher levels.
I'm playing on the Landroval server as Grabthar the Expert Prospector, for those who want to say hi and maybe take out a few baddies. My goal? To become Grabthar the Hammersmith. I even have my slogan worked out...
Buy Grabthar's hammer --
You shall avenge them!