Monday, July 9, 2012

Quest Pack Review: Lothlorien


Out of Moria into the golden woods of Lothlorien. Finally a place to rest!


When exiting Moria, you'll find yourself in the Dimrill Dale, which is still part of the Moria QP. After that one quest point though, you'll get closer to the golden woods of Lothlórien.
It used to be that you needed to get acquaintance with the Galadhrim to enter. This feature was taken out though, so people could freely explore the peaceful lands.



After the initial orc-slaying quests, we enter the woods proper. Quests here are quite spread out and have you hunt, gather and examine things all over the forest. Gather flowers, sing to trees or hunt some meat for the festival. A change of pace from the other quests for sure, though they may not be to everyone's liking. The orcs have their camps too close to the woods now, so warriors can test their skills against them.

Many animals live within the forest, some protected (risk the elves wrath if you hunt them) and others not. Aside from that there're always orcs to drive away.
Once you befriend the elves, you will get to enter Caras Galadhon, the sacred center of the forest. The quests here involve a lot of running around, trying to find your way around the flets and can honestly be quite annoying sometimes. (I've fallen to my death here more than in the entirety of Moria)

The quest pack includes 4 instances of which 2 also get featured in the epic story. One of these instances is a 12-man raid. Note that each of these instances is in Moria, but is counted as a Lothlorien dungeon for rep, token and quest pack purposes.


The mirror-halls of Lumul-Nar (3-man)


One of 2 instances you'll have seen in the epic story and of which I'm not 100% sure if they can be repeated for free. The chasms under the top of Zirak-zigil have been used by the old dwarfs to construct an ingenious system of mirrors and reflections to light their halls. The merrevail and their mistress wish to bring darkness to their lairs though and it's your task to stop them.

This instance features big light-reflection puzzles in which you have to turn the mirrors to their correct positions to get further in.


The Water Wheels: Nalâ-dûm (3-man)


The 2nd of the 2 instances featured in the epic. The great wheels of this big canal system have stopped turning. This one can get annoying if you don't know what you're doing as there are many levers and valves to be used to open certain ways. Apart from that, the instance is pretty straightforward.


Halls of Crafting (6-man)


Once a great forge of the dwarves, the orcs now use it to make their own weapons. This one consists of a pretty straightforward dungeon, killing trash in between the bosses.

The bosses themselves consist of tank and spank, with some minor features for flavor, like flames spewing from below or buff locations. Nothing really special.


Dâr Narbugud (12-man)


One of the longer raids in the game as it still remains unbroken. I've never completed this one and the wiki says it can take up to 4 hours, which I believe is a correct assessment.
Deep under the mines of Moria, in the deepest pit of Middle-Earth, nameless things stir, looking to ascend into the light and take over. I won't go into much detail but most of the bosses are interesting and some will take good coordination.


Price/Value: 3/5 (You can easily do without this pack, though if you don't like Moria, bump the score up to 4 as this'll make it easier to get out early.)
Storyline: 3/5 (There's some interesting tidbits here and there. Tree-singing is awesome. Meeting lady Galadriel is as well.)
Quest Progression: 3.5/5 (Some quests happen all over, which can be annoying, though the zone itself isn't that large.)
Atmosphere: 4/5 (The golden woods and Caras Galadhon offer nice and relaxing views. The orc camps in the nw are somewhat less interesting.)

Overall: 13.5/20
Not a must-buy, though not a pack to avoid either. It's optional, though people not liking Moria usually like this one and gives them the opportunity to skip a lot of it.

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