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World of Warcraft vs Lord of the Rings Online from a LORTO newb perspective

25 September, 2010 (11:39) | games, Mindless Blather

I have been playing WoW since the game came out what $600 dollars or so ago? Some of what I’m saying here may not be correct because I just haven’t found the right setting or option yet. From a complete noob perspective in Lord of the Rings, here is how it stacks up so far on the first few months:

Things LOTRO shines on:

When you ride from city to city, you can jump off at any time. Can’t jump off a bird in wow. This is so nice when leveling up your mining or heading to a quest in the middle of a flight path.

Max quests is 40 vs 25. I hate this in WoW because sometimes I want to be working on a few quest chains in several zones, then add the seasonal quests. I run out.

Graphics are different, sometimes better. Water looks good, but a river has to go uphill at the last second before becoming a waterfall. If you have a good video card the graphics are awesome. There are huge fields of tall grass and flowers that sway in the breeze, looks good on the tv computer.

There are really cool combo moves we haven’t quite figured out yet. So different classes working together can end up with a combo move coming up where if you all hit the same color, it does something awesome like summon an Ent to stomp your enemy.

The pace of some of the instances is fast and exciting.

WoW is better:

Plugins!!!! The biggest strength of WoW is the vast library of plugins available. If you use the curse gaming client you can download, search, manage all of your plugins in a snap. Things like healbot, bagnon, dpsmeter just aren’t available for LORTO yet. I haven’t studied the API, but so far I don’t think you can do much for LORTO besides skin the UI.

standing in a fire burns you in WoW

Bag space! UGH. I am so used to bagnon in WoW, having one giant bag pop up that I can’t stand the individual bags on LORTO. I don’t know yet if you can upgrade the bag slot numbers. If you can’t it is going to really suck long term.

Even after they opened free players up, the population of WoW is so vast that everything works better. The autodungeon finder, auction house, battlegrounds. Life is a lot easier because  there are always people online outside your guild/kinship to accomplish what you need at the moment.

Autorun works with a mouse button (easily fixed by mapping in LOTRO)

Dragging items from bag to bag, or bag to vendor is awkward, slow, jerky in LORTO

For a 10GB download, the background music sucks. WoW music gets turned off on my machine, but once in a while i flip it back on cause i love running in to Stormwind and looking around. They picked their majestic music well. LORTO music is more accurate for the theme of the game. It sounds like a wandering band of minstrels with old instruments. Others may love this, just personal opinion.

No signs to be found in LORTO, I can’t find a trainer anywhere. Well that is how it started. Once you learn the interface it is easy to find things. I like being able to ask a guard in WoW and have my destination show up red on the map, or use the tool built in to the minimap. Questhelper handicapped my ability to go find things myself, it is a time saver that I would love to see in Lorto.

The map sort of kind of tells you an area. Sometimes it is right. I don’t like the icons they use to explain different points of interest because they aren’t very obvious.

The button interface is just awful. This weird grey wicker looking thing. The buttons make very little sense so far. I’l figure it out as I go.

It seems you have to have a bag open to keep your 3 additional spell bars open. This is easily fixed by going in to the options.

The learning curve for a minstrel is high, and the effects of each action you are capable of are confusing. The buffing doesn’t last very long, and you need to memorize what each one does because they aren’t self explanatory in the name.

Just different, not better or worse either way

jumping down far hurts you in WoW, jumping down breaks your leg and slows you down in LORTO.


I like LORTO a lot. It is different and refreshing to play something that is easy to pick up with WoW skills. I love the graphics and the theme. My concern is that it won’t pick up enough players to drive development. And what happens when they finish the books? Do they have the rights to build new story or will the movie studios shoot them down? For now I’ll keep switching between both.



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