A New Hope: A Reintroduction Thread


Well-known member
Jul 23, 2020
Bend, Oregon
Greetings, strangers from distant lands, friends of old.

Nearing six years ago I was summoned to answer the threat of Mordor in the MMORPG Lord of the Rings Online. As with Diablo II, I was about six years late in coming to LoTRO. The MMORPG had launched in 2007 and the word on the street was that it wouldn't be long for the world. I had been wary about getting into an MMORPG, however, there seemed to be a probable end date in sight, a real life friend had been recommending it for years, my sister wanted to give it a go, and hey, it's Middle Earth, the ultimate draw for this fantasy gamer.

So I put my reservations aside and ventured in ... and it was amazing. Really amazing, everything exceeded my expectations. The first play through (probably ~1800 hours of play time) was totally magical. The second play through was even better ... I had a better grasp of game mechanics, more resources, and picked up more subtle details of the compelling story. The third play through was fun too. I created an alt account and was now able self rush and do many more things solo that were previously closed to me. Then COVID hit and closed some real world recreational activities and I launched an intensive fourth play through (note: while already maintaining three high level characters). I made it to the point where I was starting to equip endgame gear on my fourth (now high level character) and then I simply lost 'it'.

I was doing the math on what would be required to max out the six 'legendary items' I would need for my three trait trees and came to the realization that it would take in excess of 200 hours of play time to accomplish and would probably mean doing the same 45 minute run every day for more than 200 days ... get's you thinking ... huh?

LoTRO started off amazing, magical, but at some point it became a full time second job. Poorly considered game mechanics are partly to blame but in truth the fault is mostly mine. After six years of escalating play I've produced some forty characters on three fully (or nearly fully) unlocked accounts including three characters running the MMORPG endgame treadmill. I have characters on four game worlds. It's become a lot of work. After some soul searching I've decided that like the elves of the fourth age of Middle Earth, my time there too has come to an end.

Now I didn't go and delete anything or get my accounts closed which could be a mistake ... but I simply couldn't bring myself to delete many thousands of hours of what had once been a labor of love. As I write this it occurs to me that LoTRO may be my own One Ring. It's damaging to me to possess, I can't bring myself to destroy it, and have come to both hate and love it. Hmm, that's just too uncanny.

Anyhow, what brings me here is I'm getting off LoTRO with DII ... which could be like quitting crack with cigarettes ... though I'm not really sure ... I've never done drugs ... gaming has always been my vice of choice. I attempted this once before a couple years ago and made it LoTRO free for about a month. Maxicek was even nice enough to help me recover my old forum account ... but then, my sister called out of the blue wanting to play LoTRO (odd since it didn't grab her the way it grabbed me). She played for an afternoon ... I played for another two years. And regrettably, I didn't even thank Max for his time ... I just disappeared into Middle Earth ... Probably just one of the many minor affronts that came from having the MMORP monkey on my back. So, it's a little late, but a belated thank you and sorry goes out to Max.

Speaking of Max, a few weeks ago I was hiding from LoTRO at the old Etdlahq bar drinking and feeling a bit sad that the SPF had apparently folded up shop when Max sent me an email letting me know where everyone had gone. So another thanks goes out to Max! And while I'm at it, thanks to everyone else who's put in what must have been a lot of time to create and migrate content to a new website. The new place looks great!

Anyhow, I just wanted to stop in and let folks know that I'm in the neighborhood again. Sorry about the stream of consciousness soul searching concerning the MMORPG journey ... as I started writing I discovered I had some issues that needed exploring ... I thought about deleting it after I wrote it but then thought 'hey, it could be interesting or even useful to someone'.

Oh, before I go. Perhaps something on topic (well you know, on topic for DII ... I guess it's my introduction thread so it's hard to go too wrong). I played DII from 2006-2014 and was active (mostly tournaments) in the SPF from 2009-2014 ... I kept the same forum name in case someone might remember me ... though 'Han shot first' is starting to look really dated. It worked well in the 90's, was still okay-ish when I registered at the old forum in the 00's, but now, George Lucas tinkering with the original trilogy is pretty far from my chief complaint about that franchise ... but I digress ...

I'd carefully saved all my old characters and stashes but after a six year break it didn't really seem right to pick them up again so I've decided to do a clean restart. So far I'd say I've made the right call. Before I started writing this I was doing a little playing and found a SoJ and was pretty darn excited about it ... had I been playing on one of my old characters sporting, say, a +2 BK and all the other best loot from the current, beta, and other previous patches I doubt I'd have cared one bit about coming across that lowly SoJ.

Which I guess brings me to goals this time around. I don't want to get too carried away. After all, I'm looking for some gaming fun to fill in around the real life fun edges not a new second gaming job to replace LoTRO. So far I've started an mfer in 1.13d (ATMA, RWM), 1.11b (ATMA, RWM), and 1.09d (ATMA) and am just seeing where the mood takes me. In terms of outstanding DII business, I never found the Ghostflame Legend Spike, Earth Shifter Thunder Maul, Astreon's Iron Ward Caduceus, Dragonscale Zakarum Shield, or Tyrael's Might Sacred Armor. Also, I never had a Cham or Zod drop in 1.13 or anything higher than Vex drop in pre 1.13. I'm playing around with the idea of working towards creating a bnet worthy hammerdin in 1.11b to try and scare up some of those outstanding items ... but that seems pretty grindy and time intensive and the main goal needs to be having fun and not playing all the time!

If you're still with me, I just have to say 'Wow. You are a real trooper'. It took a bit but I think I've come up with a decent first post to get me started here at the new SPF. Let's see, I wanted to be sure to capture my essence ... Really long winded, check. Rambling stream of consciousness approach, check. Weird punctuation ... that's a double check. I guess there's only one thing left to do:

Thanks for the read!


Be careful with MMORPGs. HSF is back in the neighborhood. Big thanks to Max and everyone else who has put in so much work here!


Guide Author
Dec 24, 2019
Welcome back, good to see you in our new home.


Well-known member
May 1, 2020
Welcome back!

Why can't TLDRs be put at the start of long posts? You made me read the whole thing :ROFLMAO:
  • Haha
Reactions: D2DC


Active member
Mar 15, 2020
Austin, TX
*kicks shins*

Even though I didn't follow your philosophy regarding keeping my old SPF handle, Han DID shoot first and I have no qualms of anyone continuing to remind the world at large about that fact. And, though it's not on display here, I fully support WoTs. TL;DRs be damned!

Welcome back, dude. Regardless of whether LotRO grabs you by the cohones again (dropping vices is a tough task), I only hope that you stick around for a good long while and have some fun while you're at it!
  • Like
Reactions: Swamigoon
Mar 16, 2020
Welcome back!

Having spent far too much time in World of Warcraft in the past, I can totally empathize with what you went through and are feeling now. I hope you enjoy your fresh D2 start and your time here.


Well-known member
Guide Author
Apr 18, 2020
@Trim : Karma demands another recut edition of "A New Hope," in which not only does Han shoot first, he shoots six times in rapid succession before Greedo can even lift his blaster.


Active member
Mar 25, 2020
* releases level 24 dragon talon on HanShotFirst shins. (Haven't done this before so wanted a proper start)

@Swamigoon I pictured the scene in my mind, it was excellent. :)
Mar 14, 2020
Welcome back! I think it is actually pretty interesting to read what all those old forimites who disppeared have been up to over the last few years.

Hope that you enjoy your return and that you find more time for other stuff than MMORPGs! At least if that is what you want :)

And wouldn't May 4th have been a much better day to return? :unsure: 🤓


Guide Author
Dec 24, 2019
@Trim : Karma demands another recut edition of "A New Hope," in which not only does Han shoot first, he shoots six times in rapid succession before Greedo can even lift his blaster.
Star Wars Episode IV: The Tarantino remake


Jul 12, 2020
Welcome back .

Hopefully 1.13 will bring you the HRs that you missed in other patches during your play. I played a lot of the BFME series and like the ME genre of games and movies although I never play MMORGs in general so never tried the LotRO.. I still like the series and occasionally fire up BFME II 1.09 and the RoTWK as the games can be customized to be short , under 1/2 an hour and you don't need to build up gear to play.