LotRO: Wrought from frustration
I have a confession to make. It’s not pretty and although it felt very right at the time I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have a slight niggling feeling of regret now, weeks later. Still, it is what it is and I’ve nowhere to go now but forward.
Remember when the Summer Festival started? I logged in on my Lore-Master, a character I created when Shadows of Angmar went to open beta back in 2007. I wanted to make sure I had all the Hobbit races done as I simply can not stand having left over festival deeds in my log book. If you don’t get them done during the festival you have to wait an entire year to finish them and that upsets me for most seriously childish reasons. There, I said it. It’s childish on my part, fully admit that, but I can’t help it. I *loathe* seeing those deeds linger on with no way to finish them. I decided some time ago that I was so tired of seeing those festival deeds undone that I was going to start running festivals again just to obliterate them from my deed book.
I opened my Lore-Master’s deed book, saw that she did in fact have an unfinished Hobbit Race deed and straight away went to the races. I placed my bet on the slowest Hobbit there and then, with expectation, as I had no idea I’d picked the one Hobbit who wouldn’t even finish the race, waited to see how my pick fared. I had doubts, something felt off, but I was ignoring them and checked out my fellow festival attendees as I waited for the race to start. Halfway through the race it finally hit me.
I’d not only already finished the food eating race deed but it now looked different.
I opened my deed book again and stared at the deed in question. Sure enough, it was a new deed. I could see where I’d been granted credit for finishing the old deed and I now had a bunch more races to win with each Hobbit racer. I won’t lie. That irked me. Still, I was there and thought, “I’ll just get this done and over with”. The race finished with my pick still halfway through the food tables. I’d lost. When it was time to place bets again I couldn’t. That’s when I remembered the new system where you either have to wait an hour to run the race again or pay with a mithril coin to run the race without having to wait the hour. I was suddenly struck with just how time-consuming this festival deed would be. You aren’t promised a win and you very likely won’t as the odds are stacked against you (or me, it took hours and hours to finish this deed when I only needed one win per Hobbit). How many mithril coins would it take to finish this deed? Would I really spend real money (mithril coins aren’t free) to finish a festival deed? The answer to that was a big fat “No!”. I’ll buy the coins and use them for many things but a festival deed? No. Not going to happen.
So, what now?
I logged out of my Lore-Master and checked my other characters. They all had the new deed. I can’t explain how that made me feel. I knew then, just as I know now, that my reaction was childish. Couldn’t I just choose to ignore those deeds? Was I really going to let this fester, a long slow burning that would grow into a mountain of resentment? Why, no. It didn’t fester at all. I didn’t give it time to fester. I just started deleting characters. I deleted my Lore-Master, my Hunter, my Minstrel, my little Burglar, my original Hunter on my second account. I did stop short of deleting my Captain, Condi and my Guardian, Ollena. I also kept my Champion, Gasi Stynkrbottom and my baby Rune-Keeper that I’m supposed to only play when my son and his wife log in (which, NEVER happens). The rest? Deleted. Gone forever. I rerolled my Lore-Master and named her Ranni (her original name) and then logged out.
It almost went further, this serious hate for unfinished festival deeds. Once I’d logged out of LotRO completely I clicked the “Start” button on my taskbar, scrolled up to the Control Panel and selected “Programs and Features”. I was scrolling through the list of installed software on my computer when it hit me like a load of bricks to the face. “WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU DOING???”, I asked myself. And really, what was I doing? It’s just a silly fluff deed and I do truly love LotRO. With what little bit of common sense I had left, I closed every window I had open on my computer, went to the laundry room and started a load of clothes. I didn’t even look at my computer for the next several hours, partly because I was mad at that festival deed but, mostly, because I felt a little stupid.
That’s what started my MMO break. That wall of grind just slapped me silly and I had to step away from grindy games for a while. This many weeks later I do feel some regret. I deleted several maxed crafters. I deleted a level 67, 66, 65 and a one that was level 77. I deleted Original Ranni, the character I’ve spent years playing. The character I played best out of all of them. The one I felt a connection of sorts to. Every single friend I’ve ever made in LotRO I made with that character. She represented a LOT of history. So yes, I do have regrets.
BUT! I also have a Lore-Master that doesn’t have that insipid festival deed in her book. I’ve worked Ranni up to level 12 so far. She’s hanging out in Combe drowning her frustrations in stories from the locals of what it’s like to live in such a poor state, always threatened by the Brigands. I know another festival will start soon and she may be auto-granted another round of festival deeds. I’m hoping that if I just don’t log in while the festivals are live that the festival deeds won’t be put in my log book. We’ll see. I’m taking my return to MMOs slow as I still have a slew of other games I’m enjoying right now. I still need to do Wildermore (sp?) on both Condi and Ollena but the mounted combat lag is just so horrific for me at times it’s unplayable. Maybe soon.
For now I’m just going to take it one step at a time and remember all the many and varied reasons LotRO is so close to my heart, because it is. I’ve missed playing and as frustrating as a low leveled Lore-Master is to play, I’m looking forward to growing her up.