Joyful Journey to End Game - A Lord of the Rings Online Guide
Lord of the Rings Online (LOTRO) has existed for thirteen years and has added a new expansion and endgame content in the past year starting with Minas Morgal in the fall of 2019 and an endgame raid called Remmorchant in March 2020. Some things have changed with these recent additions, but much of the underlying content remains the same. There is talk of changes, but any game that wants to last over a decade has to do some. The core of the game remains the same and the story stays true to Middle Earth.
I wrote this guide due to leveling more characters to the endgame after accomplishing the feat successfully with my minstrel, who is now working on learning how to reach Shelob and give her a good whooping in the Remmorchant raid. My captain has reached the 100’s (max level is 130) and I realized I missed some things along the way that I needed to do. I also had a hard push on my minstrel to complete some tasks I should have done along the way. Here’s a guide to help you sort things out. Remember the most important part of the game is enjoying the story and your time playing.
Trait points are used to create your build. All classes have three trees of blue, red, and yellow. You will gain enough trait points to fill in one as the main and work out getting helpful items from the other two. Each color has its own set of special traits that add on to it. I’ve even made a yellow build with more blue than anything that works well when I am the tank group healer of a raid. I won’t go into all the builds people like now, just know you can do a lot of different setups with them. Also, you have two builds you can work on without having to use mithril coins to add more.
The key point I want to make about trait points in this guide is how to have all of them gained by the endgame. There are some places we may want to skip on the way to leveling another character. However, some of these places have trait points attached to their questing chains. A good place to see the full list of all the trait points and how they are gained is the wiki at https://lotro-wiki.com/index.php/Class_Trait_Point. Fifty-four points come straight from leveling so you don’t have to worry about those, just apply them to your trait tree as you gain them.
You should be sure to complete all your class quests and deeds. The quests are easy to mix in with questing of the areas where they are located.
There are 8 deeds, each supplying a trait point upon completion, that require you to use a set of three skills a certain number of times. You will use most with little thought, others are not used so much in straight leveling or may be part of a trait line you did not use leveling up. Monitor them as you level.
On my minstrel, I found that I had to do two anthems, one of them 1000 times, and one I had never used while leveling. The game, without a skill deed accelerator, allows you to do 10% of the required total per day. Training dummies come in handy for the ones requiring an enemy target and you find you don’t use them enough in regular play. Be sure the training dummy you use is in the open world is in an area close to your level or higher. I suggest the one in the Ettenmoors because it works at all levels. Also, dummies that can be used in housing decorations work for all levels.
Another deed at level 39 requires you to collect pages. Be sure to buy all three books from your class trainer once you hit this level. Once on the appropriate maps, the humanoid mobs will randomly drop pages for you. You can verify which maps you can choose from by checking out the link on the wiki page I listed earlier.
Once you reach Western Rohan, you do quests that teach you about Epic Battles. However, you can get your character into some of these, mainly Pelargir, as early as your 20s. These battles will supply you with points you then apply to your character for extra actions you can do in the battle. Two class deeds require you to gain first 100 battle points and then 200 battle points. Each deed will give you a trait point. Legendary items will require you to do a lot of these and I’ll explain that in the next section.
The rest of the trait points come from completing various book quests and area-specific deeds. These will be the things you do not want to skip. The following is a quick list and you can find it in more detail on the wiki page I linked above:
- Mines of Moria Deed - Volume II, Books 1-6 all must be completed for the point
- Iron Garrison Guards Kindred reputation - easily gained playing through Moria
- West Rohan Quest Chains - Must do all 5 areas, 1 point per area
- Central Gondor Quest Chains - 4 areas, 1 point per area
- Follow the quest chain at least through the quest that gives the trait point
- Play through Ashes and Stars Chapter 4 in Osgiliath (Pre-Battle)
- Complete Quests of Old Anorien and Deeds of Old Anorien
- This includes Minas Tirith, Pelennor and Talath Anor areas
- This includes slayer deeds and exploration deeds
- Epic Quests - Will list the volumes that must be worked through to reach them
- Volume IV of the epic quests - starts in Gondor - 5 trait points
- The Black Book of Mordor - 6 trait points
- The Legacy of Durin and the Trials of the Dwarves - 1 point
Be sure to enjoy exploring the world as you gain these points and nothing says you must fast track to the end. The above is the minimum required to gain all of your trait points.
You gain access to Legendary Items through the quests that allow you to access Moria. For this guide, I will talk about what to do with the Legendary Items you will want to grow with you to the endgame.
Once you reach level 100 the real fun begins. You will want to have First Age Legendary Items crafted. There are several items that will enhance and grow these weapons with you. The following is a discussion of what I found efficient in my steps of making sure these items grew properly and with the least effort. No matter what you do, there will be a grind to this.
First, get your new First Age Legendary Items identified and slotted for leveling. I would also start using these as soon as you gain them. You will probably deconstruct some legendaries to make room for them and will probably have Heritage Runes to level them to 60 or close to it.
Like any Legendary Item, you will know what your Legacies are once it has reached 30. The fun part is you will not always get the ones you want. This is where leveling Third Age Legendary Items will come in handy because they may give you the Legacies you want and you can use them to swap out the Legacies you do not want before you imbue it. Once it is imbued you have to use an Imbued Legacy Replacement Scroll instead of this method.
I suggest making sure you use an Anfalas Scroll of Delving on your items before you Imbue them. All reforging after level 30 gives you the option to increase the tier of one of two legacies already applied to the weapon at every 10 levels after 30. It does not require this, but I like making use of the option and it was easy to get at least three scrolls while still working on questing around Dol Amroth in Western Gondor. I do this because it helps with a slight reduction to the number of Anfalas Scrolls of Empowerment you will need to maximize the legacies.
Before imbuing, a minimum requirement is to level the weapon enough so it has six legacies, which happens upon reforging at level 30. This will save a great deal of time and effort because the Anfalas Crystal of Remembrance is difficult to find for adding legacy slots. You will acquire one from Volume IV, Book 3, Chapter 7: Osgiliath Overrun. This will allow you to put the 7th and final legacy on one of your Legendary Items fairly early on. The earlier you can gain 7 legacies for both items, the sooner you can get them all properly set and leveled. These items have a rare chance of dropping from various instance loot chests or the hobbit boxes. You get free hobbit boxes daily, and a better one weekly if a VIP member.
Once imbued, let the grind begin. You will need a lot of Anfalas Scrolls of Empowerment and Anfalas Star-Lit Crystals. The crystals are for increasing the DPS or the associated primary ability of the Legendary Item, always listed first when looking at your item in the Legendary Item Window. This ability has a max of 67 and usually starts at 40 when the item is first imbued. Level the legacies with the scrolls and they can go to a max of 83. This is how you make the items grow with you as you level.
The current popular ways as of 2020 to gain Anfalas Star-Lit Crystals are mainly running the Pelargir Epic Battle instance and Festivals. Both allow the acquisition of these via the associated barter item. The most popular way to grind for the Anfalas Scrolls of Empowerment is by doing the Minas Tirith dailies once you have completed the quests to access these. Thankfully, there are other ways to buy these from Dol Amroth on to endgame, but most will come from the grind.
Now if you just want to play open world and not delve into raiding much at the endgame, it won’t be so bad if your Legendary Items aren’t maxed out. However, the stronger it is, the more helpful it is.
Armor, Jewelry and Other Items of Note
You can survive with dropped gear as you level. Crafted gear is the stronger option because it is higher quality than the average drops. Once you reach the endgame, you will work on acquiring bartered gear and quest given items to give you an initial ability to dive into the endgame content at level 130. Then it is a matter of doing a variety of instances from 3-man to 12-man sizes to gain the gear or items to craft it yourself. As you gain better gear, the higher tier of endgame you can endure. LOTRO has five tiers for many of its dungeon and raid instances.
The main thing to note on this topic is learning what gear benefits your class and the variety of things it can do. Classes can do multiple things in a raid so I’ve seen people set up more than one set of gear and even different legendaries based on the role they need to play. For instance, a captain I am working on will have legendaries for tanking or for damage dealing that she can swap out.
At the time of writing this in 2020, most pre-raid gear drops or bartered items were at an item level of 418 unless crafted. Raid drops started about 426. You also need to understand the color quality which from lowest to highest is yellow with a green background, purple, and then teal. Definitely look at the stats as you gain gear while leveling up. Once at the endgame work to be in nothing but teal, which all raid drops are.
You will quickly find what you like in this game since most classes will flesh out in the 20 to 30 level range enough to get the feel of how they work. You will also discover way more content than you need for leveling, but it has other reasons to do it anyway. One reason to explore even if you out level an area is to complete deeds there that give you LOTRO Points (LP) just for playing. A fun option for buying more things in the store if you don’t have the cash to buy the LOTRO Points and have the patience to do lower-level content you missed.
There is no wrong way to reach the endgame other than doing so in a non-enjoyable way. However, every game has some things you must do on the way. I hope this guide helps you out and if you already leveled what felt like the hard way, maybe this will help inspire you to do it again with another class you like. I don’t know many people in LOTRO with only one character, and many have several at the endgame.
Whatever way you chose to reach the endgame may it be a fine journey with great tales.
About the Author
Althea "Briseadh" Damgaard
Althea joined Gaiscioch back in October of 2009 and has been here ever since with only a few month hiatus between Warhammer and Rift. As soon as she knew they were in Rift, she jumped ship to Faeblight and has followed them onward through every chapter since with a few side games thrown in for spice.
She has been an avid player of RPG style games since 1980 when she first played Dungeons and Dragons. Since then she has created her own tabletop gaming world used with various rule sets as D&D progressed. Once she could get online she played MUDs. Her MMO days started with Everquest and have moved through over a dozen games with some lasting only a month's time in her life and others going for years. She has tested several games from the perspective of a disabled gamer with hand issues due to her multiple sclerosis.
When not writing about or playing games, she can be found writing novels, reading and doing various art projects. She also writes items based on her faith and is working on publishing a novel. She also does editing for a gaming developer.
About Lord of the Rings Online
In The Lord of the Rings Online™, join the world’s greatest fellowship of players in the award-winning online re-creation of J. R. R. Tolkien’s legendary Middle-earth. From the crumbling, shadowed ruins of Weathertop to the ageless, golden wood of Lothlórien, immerse yourself in Middle-earth as you have never seen it before. Visit the peaceful, verdant fields of the Shire, brave the dark depths of the Mines of Moria, and raise a pint at the Prancing Pony in Bree!