The Lord of the Rings Online (LOTRO) is an epic 3D fantasy MMORPG that is highly acclaimed in the popular LotR franchise. Inspired by the original novel and film with the same name, the game brings a large number of players into the fabulous middle land for solid gaming adventure and more interactive with the characters and scenes of the movie.
The game features a rich lore inspired by the well-known story in the middle land and it incorporates the lore into the established concepts of MMORPG seamlessly to render a true story-driven gaming experience. It provides a vast fantastic world with endless adventurous missions to take, many a dungeon to explore and countless fights to engage in.
Story aside, the game is still fairly conventional offering all familiar elements of the genre of fantasy – character creation based on combination of races and classes, progressively challenging adventure with an easy and rewarding start, numerous quests and combats, dungeon crawling and PvP fightings, ever better equipment earned by play, mounts to facilitate travelling, quite a few abilities to unlock and learn, guild to join for group play, player housing and so on and so forth. With most features rendered their usual style, it is great to see some delightful twists here and there. For instance, players can morph into a monster to fight in the PvP combat; and they can trigger instanced Skirmish mode to test their skills and mettle against waves of enemy forces while trying to capture control points in the transported battlefield, in solo or with a group.
The game was a fully priced product at launch early in 2007 and then turned into a free-to-play title three years later to offer a large amount of free contents and fun to the masses. But micro-transaction and monthly subscription are also incorporated in the game. While dedicated players can choose the traditional monthly subscription to enjoy the game to the full, more casual players have the option of spending money selectively and normally in a less amount on premium contents they want. With the two different alternatives, different players can play this game in their own paces and enjoy their own way.
The Lord of the Rings Online keeps its vigor and vitality by bringing in new available contents like expansions and newly added features and revamping the old system to better cater to players’ needs. It has been out for a few years but still remains one of the best free-to-play MMORPGs in the market that is rated as a must-play.