Inspired by Aegthil’s latest musing @ I fancy myself a lobster. Gaze upon it while enjoying this gem of modern entertainment. I promise it will up the disturbafication factor by 10 or maybe -2 or something. And… if you really have no clue what this may be about, allow me to point you here.
Something often overlooked in L.O.T.R.O. in grumpy fits of bloodrage to kill anything and everything that moves is the beautiful landscape artistry as well as the music settings created to accompany players in their journies through each land. Playing in groups, P.B. tends to turn her graphics down along with the music so she can focus on the task at hand – slaughtering things with fire and lightning while throwing sticky gourds and tar at them. Today she was most fortunate to accompany Beor, however, as he got tasked to go to all the lands and slay exactly one orc, goblin, or uruk upon doing which he would yell, “For the Greyhammers!” at no one in particular. If P.B. understands it correctly, it was some little dwarves’ crazy blood-oath that the little hairy man was too lazy to see to himself. This required a lot of horsing around, so to speak, so P.B. turned the graphics way up high and enjoyed the scenery.
She can’t give you the music, but she can give you a visual perspective she missed the first time through. See, the first time through the lands we had a faulty video card at the heart of a major lawsuit that denied us such pleasures, plus we worried about things like dying. No longer! Suck at life, Hewlett Packard/NVIDIA! That laptop has safely gone on to Adoptive Mini-Clone, and now we get to enjoy the game in all its aesthetic beauty!
I suppose the point is all these beautiful artistic details make the game playable from a purely cosmetic perspective. It is just as much fun pondering where all the inspiration came for the landscapes as it is actually riding around killing things. That is one of the great reasons I have loved L.O.T.R.O. Orc-slaughtering for the kiddies and days when one is grumpy, long scenic horserides for the poor, uncultured and untravelled twits like me on days when you are contemplative about life!
P.B. supposes it is silly like so many other things in her life right now that she has stopped to proverbially “smell the roses” in L.O.T.R.O. but it is what it is. She was inspired when the tree in the Trollshaws painted above reminded her of one she photographed near where she grew up. Twenty years ago we screamed in terror at the pixelated Nazis in Commodore 64’s version of Castle Wolfenstein. Now we see what digital worlds can look like where the only limiting factor is the designer’s imagination. Most impressive.