If you read Day 5 then you might remember me trying out the Warleader. Within 24 hours of my purchase of the Warleader, it had gone on sale (on Day 6). This sale also happened less than a week after I had bought my Defiler. I was not happy that I had wasted around 500 turbine points especially when you consider how often the Creep classes are on sale. While I do think that all Creep classes are worth the price of 795 turbine points, you might just want to subscribe to LotRO for a month instead. This is really a good deal if you want to try more than one class. Keep in mind that you also will get the perks of VIP.
On Day 6 I started playing with some real world friends, trying to get them involved in PvMP. Since I was able to help them through the learning curve in game and answer any questions that they had, they now love PvMP and we will group up fairly regularly.
On Day 6 I also lead a group to take an outpost. This group quickly grew into a raid and so I had to use some of the things I learned from other leaders. The best thing to do when leading a raid is to be unexpected. If the Freeps can’t predict what you are going to do next then you can be successful even if you are outnumbered. You also need to know the terrain that you are fighting on. Don’t go to places that you have not been before and expect to do well. Luckily there were not very many Freeps on today and so I wanted to try leading people to take an outpost. We took the outpost easily and as our group grew we decided to go into Delving again. Notice how I said we; as a leader it is always good to ask your group what they want to do next. This is so that you don’t lose your whole group if you decide to do something crazy like dance around in pits of lava.
I felt confident enough to lead a group into Delving because I had been there before and learned a few things from my raid leaders. The best way to become a good leader is to learn from other leaders. The only way to do that is raid and raid often. I personally like to raid and lead raids because I like to think tactically. I love to play strategy games, everything from Total War to Civilization. Playing strategy games definitely helps you to look for things other leaders do to help your own leadership when the time comes to lead a raid.
Also it is very helpful to have a microphone when leading a raid. While I have seen raid leaders lead well without voice, it is always easier with it. If you don’t want to use voice then you can always address the whole raid in chat. If you really want to get your raid’s attention then you will want to use /raidshout <text>. (note that you have to be raid leader to use this feature)
In Delving I decided that we would try to kill the fire boss again. We fought hard and I learned that if you use a wall at the top of one of the ramps then you can avoid falling in the lava all together. The wall acts as a buffer keeping you in the fight against the searing urfons. While we did better than the time before we still only had fought around ¾ of the searing urfons. We had to leave after too many had died in the fighting. Also the searing urfons had started to respawn and so we would need a new strategy if we were ever going to take down the hardest boss in LotRO.
We continued on in delving and had a lot of fun exploring some of the places I had not been to yet. Delving is one of the most diverse dungeons in LotRO because it has enemies that range from Fire to Ice to Earth and even a lot of undead spirits. It has a dragon boss, a tree boss and of course the Fire Boss. While this delving run we were not able to defeat any of the bosses I did learn valuable tactics for future runs.
On day 7 I made it to Rank 3. At Rank three the defiler gets an ugly yellow appearance that I really did not like and was a waste of some destiny points. While I had liked the change of appearance from 0 to 2, I thought that Rank 3 looked like a step back. I realize this is merely opinion but I want you to know that I still support the change of looks because it is really the only visual sense of progression that you can get as a monster player. Really there are not many new things for monster players at Rank 3 either. I now really wish Turbine would fix this and spread new features that are crowded at Rank 0 and 1.
Over the night the Freeps were very hard at work because most of the map had been taken by them. I decided to join a raid that was defending TA. This was a great experience because we had a great leader. He had our groups split up so that we had a defending group and a flanking group. This allowed us outnumbered to defend TA for 2 full hours. It was a lot of fun because I received a ton of Infamy.
Without that fight I might not have made it to Rank 3 for a week. After the 2 hours, the leader decided he had to go and asked who wanted to lead the raid. I said that I could and I was now in control of a full raid defending TA. I used his tactics and randomness to continue to surprise the Freeps. We would hide our numbers and gradually pull the Freeps into TA then the flanking group would attack the Freeps from behind while we (and our NPC’s) would attack from the front. This lasted for another hour till I had to leave the group as it was getting late. We had successfully held off the attack of the Freeps and gained a whole bunch of Infamy while doing it.
Playing in Monster Play continues to increase in fun every day. I think it is getting more fun because I am getting more involved by doing things like leading raids.
I hope to see you all back next week for Day 8 where we will talk about taking back bases, learning from terrible leaders and finally having fun doing solo quests on my Creep without fear of fighting Freeps.