Introduction to Monster Play
by Cameron "Aelryn" Sorden
One of the neat things about Lord of the Rings Online is it's unique approach to PvP combat. Instead of taking the traditional approach of trying to balance gear, classes, and skills amongst player characters, Turbine has decided to allow players to take on the role of monsters in the Ettenmoors and duke it out with high level characters directly. You can still duel other players, but for the real PvP experience you're going to have get down and dirty as a lowly servant of Sauron. This intro will give you all the basics you need to know to get started.
Finding Your Inner Monster
The first thing you'll need to do to get started in monster play is to reach level 10 on at least one character. The reason for this is that you'll be advancing your monster character through the use of destiny points, and you can't get destiny points until you hit level 10. If you need a primer on what destiny points are, what they do, and where you get them, we have a great guide for you right here.
Once you've got the necessary levels, the next step is to find yourself a Fell Scrying Pool. These are just like the ones that take you back into an instance you've completed, but they're evil! Evil and red! You can see them by checking your map. There should be one in every major city or outpost. Go hunt one down and right click on it. You now have the option to make yourself into any one of the five monsters. Your choices include the Orc Reaver, Spider Weaver, Uruk-Hai Blackarrow, Uruk-Hai Warleader, or Warg Stalker. Check our individual monster sections for skill lists and descriptions of each class.
Although you can play more than one monster class and you can make multiple characters, I recommend focusing on only one at a time. The reason for this is that you use the same pool of destiny points to advance your monster and all of your PC characters, so you'll be spread kind of thin trying to advance two at once.
Into the Ettenmoors!
Once you've chosen a class and a name, you'll be thrust into the Ettenmoors and expected to fight. There are two terms you should get used to: Creeps and Freeps. You're a Creep. Players are Freeps. Don't get them confused. You'll see them in chat often. You can only chat with other monster players while controlling your monster character, so be prepared to be cut off from your guild and friends list while you play.
You can do many of the same things as a monster that you can do as a player: Gain and perform quests (for destiny points), work on titles, kill players to advance in rank, or fight against other monsters. Be careful about one on one encounters until you've spent some time in the Ettenmoors. You start as a swarm level monster and are easy fodder for any player of the appropriate level. Travel and quest in groups if you can.
Talk to a the skill trainer to buy passive and active improvements for your character, but remember that you need ranks to really advance your monsters. Start farming those destiny points for skill improvements! don't hesitate to join any groups you see forming up, too.
That's pretty much everything you need to know to get started in the Ettenmoors. Go ahead and grab that first round of quests to get started on your monster play career!
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