Posted Wed, Feb 18, 2009 by Savanja
The mysterious region of the Dark Forest is one that has caused a bit of fear and curiosity in Middle-Earth residents for a great many years. Learn more of this amazing area with The Hero's Guide to the Old Forest.
The untamed and maze-like environs of the Old Forest fill the south-west part of Bree, set against the border of the Shire and nestled between the haunted Barrow-downs and Buckland.
Throughout the ages of Middle-earth the Old Forest has remained an ominous region. Dark tales abound of trees coming to life and misleading those who tread harshly upon their roots. The most sinister of stories is often told to young Hobbits to keep them out of the Old Forest; it speaks of a monstrous tree called Old Man Willow, whose tremendous claw-like branches snatch up unwary travelers. The tales work to keep most folks at bay, coupled with the fact that many who have ventured into the Old Forest—either alone or with companions—have never been heard from again.
These precarious and ancient woods are thought to be the northern remnants of the great forests harvested by the Men of Númenor who ruled during the Second Age.
Bringing your character to the Old Forest is possible starting at around 10th – 12th level. The place offers an excellent variety of quests and deeds for soloing and for small and larger size fellowships through 20th level. There are several location and collection deeds when soloing around the northern fringes of the Old Forest. But beware as you venture farther south, as you may need help. There are mobs and elite monsters that could well end the life of any single hero. The majority of the quests surrounding the Old Forest are obtained at various spots in the Shire and Bree-land.
The closest civilized region is the Hobbit village Crickhollow in the northern hills of Buckland. Considered to be a retreat of sorts by Hobbits away from their homes and daily duties, Crickhollow was where Frodo Baggins claimed he was moving to when he departed the Shire with the One-Ring. Here. In nearby Newbury, your character can find various traders and a safe place to rest during your exploration of the Old Forest.