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DDO: what’s in store for Lotro

After my last post, I realized that the most fitting game to try was actually DDO. I had played DDO during its beta and then dismissed it for being too group focused for my taste. I got some interest in it again after it went F2P. However, since that was only for the US and not for Europe, I forgot about it again.

So I made that post about searching for a good game to try out/get back to and then I saw this video by accident. Apparently, the game was playing from Europe. I had mistakenly assumed that it would perform less or even be IP blocked. That teaches me to assume things.

So here are my first impressions:

  • It cannot replace Pen&Paper DnD. Computer games cannot compete with my RL friends.
  • It is pretty true to P&P though, while keeping the action of a computer game
  • You actually have to aim to hit things with both melee, ranged and spells, which makes combat more involved than for most MMO’s.
  • Just like in the P&P, you can really screw up your character build

While I could continue that list, I would like to focus on items that are relevant to Lotro going F2P.

  • I did not feel weak for being on a free account
  • Chat spam was not worse than any MMO starting zone. I actually did not see a single gold seller
  • The Turbine store is clearly present, but it is not forcing itself upon the player. Radio commercials are more intrusive.
  • Only social hubs in DDO are not instanced. This makes it easier to lock areas off as paid content. This is going to be more difficult for Lotro’s open world.

Conclusions? It is too early. However, DDO has impressed me enough to keep playing for a while. At the very least I shall have a fun game to play until Starcraft 2 beta goes live again.