Features

The Devil's In The Details: LotRO Outfits for Every Occasion

By Jeff Sproul -
Devil's in the Details

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By now I'm a fair hand at the technical stuff in the Lord of the Rings Online. I have at least a basic understanding of how all the classes work, both in solo and group play, and my skill with at least one or two classes can be considered "advanced." I know how to gear my toons and I know where and how to get the best stuff. But sometimes, the "best stuff" just looks awful and I don't want to be seen wearing it. It's not enough to be good at something if you look like a dork doing it.

To this end, I have invested heavily in LotRO's cosmetic system, having purchased several additional outfit slots and expanded my wardrobe to accomodate the needs of my personal army of toons. For some toons - and I have at least one of each class - I can't get interested until I find a great "look," and when I eventually find that perfect combination of armor and outfit pieces, I'll start to really get into the mechanics of the class because it's more visually appealing to watch. 

The cosmetic system - and particularly the wardrobe - is very flexible. As long as the contributing toon can equip the item, you can put any armor or cosmetic item in the wardrobe, and any other character on that account can wear it cosmetically.  You want a level 8 Hobbit Minstrel decked out in Rift Champion armor? Have your Champ add his Rift gear to the wardrobe and it's a done deal. This makes it much easier to collect interesting, appealing outfits - the player is not limited by class, level or reputation restrictions, provided he has one character that meets the specifications of the desired item.

Often, I will start with a "theme" for an outfit based on the character (for example, "My Hunter needs to look more like an archetypical Ranger."). Other times, I will start with one armor piece and build something around that, following a particular aesthetic in terms of colour and accessories. Or, as in the case of my adorable Hobbit Guardian, I'll start with a colour idea and find pieces that look good in that colour.

With that in mind, here are 15 of my own outfits. These are just my own personal favorites - I have 13 character slots and each character has 5 outfit slots, all of them used, so 50 outfits didn't make the list. I apologize in advance for not having many female outfits in this article - I'm a dude and play mostly dude characters. Also there are no elves.


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Kinship Uniform

Kinship outfit - front Kinshiop uniform - back

Head: Fine Linen Hat, undyed or red - Journeyman Tailor recipe
Shoulders: Pathfinder's Shoulders, black - bartered with Medallions of Moria from Hunter trainer
Back: Linen Cloak, red - Journeyman Tailor recipe
Chest: Dwarf-make Chain Hauberk, black - purchased from Outfitter at Othrikar
Gloves: Iron Miner's Hands, black - purchased from Iron Garrison Miners Trader in Moria, requires Acquaintance standing
Leggings: n/a
Boots: Dwarf Leather Boots, undyed - purchased from Medium Armor vendor in Thorin's Hall

My kinship, Baruk Khazad on Arkenstone server, was originally dwarf-only, but removed the racial restriction when they wanted to get serious about raiding. That was a long time ago, but the dwarven traditions hold true. The actual uniform consists only of the hat, cloak and hauberk, and the other pieces are member's choice. For my Hunter, I went with dwarven accessories and the spiky Hunter shoulders, because they are really wide and give him more dwarf-y proportions. All of my toons in Baruk Khazad wear this same outfit with variations of the shoulders, gloves and boots.

Cowboy Rifleman

Rifleman - front
Rifleman - back

Head: Adventurer's Hat, umber - bought with skirmish marks, also available in the LotRO store
Shoulders: n/a
Back: n/a
Chest: Well-worn Robe, umber - bought with skirmish marks
Gloves: Iron Miner's Hands, black - purchased from Iron Garrison Miners Trader in Moria, requires Acquaintance standing
Leggings: n/a
Boots: Brushed Leather Boots, umber - bought with skirmish marks, also available in the LotRO store

Hunters are essentially rootin'-tootin' gunslingers. I went with a "dusty cowboy" wild west kind of look for this one, starting with the hat. The Well-worn Robe has the look of a duster with a sherrif's badge on the right breast pocket. I don't like the forearms of the robe - they're a drab olive color that seems too colorful for the dry, dusty cowboy aesthetic - so I covered them up with big dwarf bracers, similar to cavalry gloves. I'm considering swapping the Brushed Leather Boots for the boots from Ost Dunhoth, which have pointed, upturned toes and more closely resemble cowboy boots, but those boots don't have high tops and I don't want to deny someone in my raid group a chance at the boots if they really need them for actual gear.

Classic Ranger

Ranger - front
Ranger - back

Head: Traveller's Hood, olive - purchased with skirmish marks, also available in the LotRO store
Shoulders: Shoulders of the Eorlingas (not shown) - Rise of Isengard pre-order bonus
Back: Fancy Dwarf-make Quiver, olive - Journeyman Tailor recipe
Chest: Hauberk of the Eorlingas - RoI pre-order
Gloves: Gloves of the Eorlingas - RoI pre-order
Leggings: n/a
Boots: Boots of the Eorlingas - RoI pre-order

The Rise of Isengard pre-order cosmetics are really nice. The green-drab Eorlingas set looks very ranger-y, but I don't care for the circlets that come with 'em. I paired an olive-dyed Traveller's Hood with my set and substituted the quiver for the too-bulky green cloak. The hood has some clipping issues with the shoulders, so I don't use them together. When I disable the hood, I enable the shoulders, so it looks like the hood has been tossed back and now lays on the shoulders.

The Gambler

Gambler - front
Gambler - back

Head: Adventurer's Hat, black - skirmish marks or store
Shoulders: n/a
Back: n/a
Chest: Quilted Shirt, undyed - starting gear for a new-rolled Burglar
Gloves: Fingerless Gloves, black - from the Yule Festival, following the quest chain to help the poor people
Leggings: Quilted Leggings, undyed - starting gear for a new-rolled Burglar
Boots: Brushed Leather Boots, black - skirmish marks or store

This one was originally put together for the music system guide. I wanted a common-looking "musician" outfit, so I started with a Blues Brothers-style black hat. The Burglar starting outfit is simple and clean, so I used the shirt and pants. The Fingerless Gloves and Brushed Leather Boots add a certain "tough guy" look. He now looks like a guy you'd find in a dusty saloon playing a hand of poker at a table of prospectors and cowboys. I use this same outfit on a couple of different toons.

The Marauder

Marauder - front
Marauder - back

Head: Black Corsair Eyepatch - festival giftbox, LotRO Store, special barterers
Shoulders: Shield-bearer's Shoulders, red - Moria barter item for Guardians
Back: Cloak of the Boar, undyed - Fall Festival, LotRO Store
Chest: Broin's Guard, red - Volume II Book 9 quest reward
Gloves: Barrow-warrior's Gauntlets, crimson - skirmish item
Leggings: Barrow-warrior's Leggings, crimson - skirmish item
Boots: Barrow-warrior's Boots, crimson - skirmish item

This is a Captain ready to lead the charge into enemy lines regardless of whether or not he's actually commanding anyone. His mad daring serves as a source of inspiration to his fellows. The goal of this outfit was to appear frightening and inspiring at the same time - dangerous-looking shoulder-pads, rugged dwarf armor on the extremities and a bright, bold super-hero emblem on the chest mark this guy as a leader. The eyepatch and wild, bushy beard mark him as a crazy pirate.

The Classic Villain

Villain - front Villain - back

Head: High Officer's Helm, black - Master Metalsmith recipe
Shoulders: Shield-bearer's Shoulders, black - Moria barter item for Guardians
Back: Cloak of the Helmingas - RoI pre-order
Chest: Broin's Guard, black - VIII Bk9 reward
Gloves: Gauntlets of the Iron Arm, black - Moria barter item for Guardians
Leggings: Barrow-warrior's Leggings, undyed - skirmish item
Boots: Boots of the Helmingas - RoI pre-order

This one started with the crazy stag-horn helmet, inspired by the warriors in Frank Frazetta paintings and Simon Bisley comics in old Heavy Metal magazines. The masked face is a long-standing tradition with fantasy villains, from the Black Knight to Darth Vader, and you can't go wrong with black and red. I liked the helmet so much, I built a few other outfits around it.

The Pirate Captain

Pirate - front Pirate - back

Head: Feathered Felt Hat, red - from the LotRO store
Shoulders:  Shoulders of the Helmingas - RoI pre-order
Back: Singed Cloak, crimson - VII Bk6 Ch8 boss loot
Chest: Extravagant Festival Robe, red - Yule Festival, from the quest chain to help the rich guys
Gloves: Fingerless Gloves, black - Yule Festival, poor guys
Leggings: n/a
Boots: Boots of the Helmingas - RoI pre-order

Early on, I decided to take a non-standard approach to the Captain. The traditional approach seems to be along the lines of a "paladin" type, the knight in shining armor who valiantly saves the day, etc. Edward Teach was also a legendary captain and leader of men, but he was certainly not known for his paladin-y ways... he was more popularly known as Blackbeard the pirate. This is his "formal" pirate captain outfit.

The Blackbeard

Blackbeard - front Blackbeard - back

Head: Black Corsair Eyepatch and Hat - festival gift box, LotRO store, special barterers
Shoulders:  Quilted Shoulder Pads, red - Light Armor Vendors sell these
Back: Singed Cloak, red - 2.6.8 boss drop
Chest: Shirt of the Mighty Verse, red - Moria barter item for Minstrels
Gloves: Gloves of the Helmingas - RoI pre-order
Leggings: Majestic Marchwarden's Leggings - Supreme Tailor medium armor recipe
Boots: Boots of the Helmingas - RoI pre-order

This was my attempt to create a Blackbeard-like pirate outfit for a Captain of low moral character but who is nonetheless an effective leader of men. Blackbeard is traditionally portrayed with a large tricorne hat and a long, fancy red jacket with a brace of three pistols strapped across his chest. There are no knee-length "jackets" in the game that suit my purpose, but the Minstrel shirt has the prerequisite strap across the chest, and the red top of the leggings makes the shirt look like a longer garment. The hat comes from various festival gift boxes, and can be purchased with special barter tokens every year on International Talk Like A Pirate Day when there is a special event at the bridge over the Brandywine River between Stock and Buckland.


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More outfits on the next page!



Devil's in the Details
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The Blue Istari

Blue - front Blue - back

Head: Linen Hat, navy - Journeymany Tailor recipe
Shoulders:  Songmaster's Shoulders, Ered Luin blue - Mirkwood barter item for Minstrels
Back: Linen Cloak, Ered Luin blue - Journeyman Tailor recipe
Chest: Carpenter's Robe, navy - LotRO store
Gloves: n/a
Leggings: n/a
Boots:  Padded Shoes, undyed - Burglar starting item

Alatar and Pallando were Maiar of the same order as Gandalf, Saruman and Radagast. They were both clad in blue and sent off somewhere to the east, and that is all that is really known about them. This Lore-master outfit pays homage to the two missing Blue Wizards with archetypical wizardly attire. There is one thing that bothers me about the Carpenter's Robe - the toes of any footwear worn underneath peak out from under the hem, but if the footwear is tall boots, the tops of the boots clip through around the knees. The Padded Shoes are inconspicuous enough and do not present such a problem.

Barbie Dream Tank

BDT - front BDT - back
Head: Ceremonial Himhar, purple - LotRO store; the original is a quest reward
Shoulders:  Elven Soldier's Shoulder Guards, purple - Master Metalsmith recipe
Back: n/a
Chest: Heavy Armor from Thorin's Hall, purple - Reputation barter item from Thorin's Hall, uses the same model as many other chest pieces
Gloves: Elven Soldier's Gloves, purple - Master Metalsmith recipe
Leggings: Dwarf-iron Leggings, purple - Artisan Metalsmith recipe
Boots:  - Dwarf-iron Boots, purple - Artisan Metalsmith recipe

I saw a Dwarf Guardian wearing an outfit similar to this on Riddermark server once, with a different chest piece, and decided immediately that I wanted it in pink for my only female toon. Unfortunately, rose dye is uneven and it ended up looking more "hodge-podge" than I liked, so I went with purple dye instead. The goal of this outfit was to make the adorable little tank as obvious to her enemies as possible, with outlandish, bright colors, but still look tough as nails. The shoulders and gloves are a rare example of Elven armor looking more intimidating than Dwarven items.

True story: I was working on epic books with this character, with this outfit equipped. I happened across a fellow working on the same quest and struggling with it, so I joined him and we hammered through it quick. When it was done, he said "You're very beautiful." I shuddered, thanked him politely and left his company. This is why I usually don't play female toons.

Hell's Dorfs Goatercycle Club Member

Hell's Dorf - front Hell's Dorf - back

Head: Trapper's Bandana, black - skirmish item
Shoulders:  n/a
Back: n/a
Chest: Fisherman's Vest, navy - purchased from most Outfitters
Gloves: n/a
Leggings:n/a
Boots: n/a

One of the simplest outfits on any of my toons. The Fisherman's Vest outfit looks like faded denim when dyed navy, which makes the wearer look like a 70's outlaw biker. Particularly when the wearer is a bearded Dwarf. This outfit looks awesome on Dwarves of any class. When a couple of my friends started playing, we all rolled Dwarves and we all wore this outfit like a biker gang. Since I had the Mirkwood pre-order goat, I decreed that we were a "goatercycle" club, Hell's Dorfs.

The Blademaster

Blademaster - front Blademaster - back

Head: Ceremonial Himhar, black - LotRO Store
Shoulders:  Dwarf Leather Shoulder Guards, black - these ones were purchased in Othrikar; a similar model is sold in the LotRO store
Back: Singed Cloak, black - 2.6.8 boss loot
Chest: Fine Hauberk, black - Master Tailor recipe
Gloves: Iron Miner's Hands, black - purchased from Iron Garrison Miners in Moria
Leggings: n/a
Boots: Brushed Leather Boots, black - skirmish item, LotRO store

Another "villainous" type of outfit, meant to inspire fear in the enemy. The colors are bold and striking - reds and golds on black - and the blade-like details on the helmet and shoulder guards add an air of menace. He looks like he might be dangerous to stand near. The shape of the helmet is like that of the samurai's kabuto, though the construction appears to be very different. Just to be a giant dork, I got this character the Anniversary Steed, so the tough-looking Mister Serious-face is riding around on a giant easter marshmallow.

The Grim Warden

Grim Warden - front Grim Warden - back

Head: High Officer's Helm, black - Supreme Metalsmith recipe
Shoulders:  Tough Skirmisher's Shoulder Guards, undyed - skirmish item
Back: n/a
Chest: Broin's Guard, black - VII Bk9 reward
Gloves: Gloves of the Eorlingas - RoI pre-order
Leggings: Majestic Marchwarden's Leggings, umber - Supreme Tailor recipe
Boots: Boots of the Eorlingas - RoI pre-order

The "nature boy" aspect of this helmet appeals to me. It is sinister with all the spikes and horns and full-face coverage, but also reminiscent of the druidic style of ancient celts. Despite being heavy armor, it fits well with the Warden class and looks natural on a spear-hurler. He looks like a guy that's been too long removed from polite society and now lives by his own rules struggling against the wilderness.

Half-pint Hoplite

Hoplite - front Hoplite - back

Head: Helm of Rohan, undyed - LotRO store only
Shoulders:  Ceremonial Ajokoira Shoulder Guards - Master Tailor recipe, requires Lossoth rep
Back: Warden's Pack - available from most Outfitters
Chest: Broin's Guard, black - VII Bk9 reward
Gloves: Iron Miner's Hands - Iron Garrison Miners, requires standing
Leggings: Majestic Marchwarden's Leggings, red - Supreme Tailor recipe
Boots: Dwarf Leather Boots - Medium Armor vendor at Thorin's Hall

The Warden has always reminded me of Achilles in the movie Troy. They do the same jump-and-stab moves and use the spear and shield, the same as the hoplites that made up the bulk of classical armies. The 3-crested Helm of Rohan also looks like something from classical times, and makes for good hoplite headgear. The Town-saver's Helm from the Rift is also pretty good for a hoplite-style outfit, but I don't much care for the style of the face guard. I wanted a hoplite-style outfit after playing Rome: Total War with the Total Realism mod - hoplite phalanges take forever to kill, shred through cavalry and make a mockery of most barbarian infantry units. A phalanx of Wardens would be equally indestructible.

The No-Goodnik

No-goodnik - front No-goodnik - back

Head: Makeshift Ranger Mask, black - skirmish item or LotRO store
Shoulders:  Dungeon-crawler's Shoulders, black - Mirkwood barter item for Burglars
Back: n/a
Chest: Well-worn Robe, black - skirmish item
Gloves: Fingerless Gloves, black - Yule Festival reward for helping the poor
Leggings: n/a
Boots: Dwarf Leather Shoes, black - Light Armor vendor in Thorin's Hall

This is a fellow who is clearly up to shenanigans. The Makeshift Ranger Mask is the uniform of troublemakers and ne'er-do-wells - it covers the face like a ninja mask, but the upturned "horn" at the back gives it a touch of mischievous whimsy. I like the big, bulky shoulders - when he's running, it looks like he's hunched over and hiding something. Some lore purists may scoff at the use of shoes for this outfit, but you can't conceal a spring-loaded blade in bare feet.

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I'd like to give a shout-out to a few bloggers who are similarly transfixed by the cosmetic system and like to show off their creative sides. Their posts range from inspirational to downright silly and show a wide range of possibility for making one's character unique: 

Have your own unique, interesting, unusual or wacky outfit? Share it in our forums!

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