A long, long time ago, before this blog was established, LOTRO was once what I’d consider my main MMO. It’s hard to believe since I’ve rarely written about it.
With all the excitement about the 15th year anniversary and gifts, I was drawn to log in again last week. Interestingly, I’d just re-installed the game sometime in March in order to change my password for account security purposes.
In looking back, I did find one post about LOTRO from 2015 where I shared the box (that I still own) from my original pre-order. It came from Best Buy – I remember that because I still have the pre-order cloak that was specific to Best Buy (and I thought it was one of the better cloaks).
Anyhow, I noted two important things from that post:
- I bought a lifetime subscription
- I stuck around the game, even though we weren’t really playing it anymore, until the day I accidentally didn’t pay upkeep on my LOTRO house and lost it.
Losing my house in LOTRO was the final straw for me, and I stopped logging in after that. That was right around when Rohan released – I know because I’d pre-ordered the expansion but never set foot in it. So it’s probably been about 10 years since I’ve actively played the game.
I know that I did log in when they released the Beorning, and had purchased the race for LOTRO points… because I rolled a Beorning alt. I didn’t get very far with her, however.
There was also a time when the Posse also played the Moors PVP on the monster side for a while. But we haven’t done that in a very long time.
I don’t recall exactly why I put down LOTRO. I do remember that we were seeing some really bad lag and rubberbanding on Brandywine the last time we played, which was a turn-off. I think that’s also about the time when Guild Wars 2 was releasing, so we probably just set LOTRO down for greener pastures.
But anyhow, back to the important topic: housing.
I’ve heard that over the years, LOTRO has tried to nudge cash shop purchases forefront, sometimes to the ire of the playerbase. One such thing was the Premium Housing.
Because I’m a housing fan, I did pause to look into this at the time of release. Bigger housing with more of their infamous hooks sounded nice. But then I saw that it was a cash shop purchase – and not a cheap one – and gave a little dismissive frown.
I had no interest in buying a house with real money that I could lose if I didn’t pay upkeep – I still had that taste in my mouth from losing my original LOTRO house. However, I learned more recently that VIP players do not have to pay upkeep for premium housing.
I’m not sure when that happened, but that’s very good! I also poked around a bit more and learned that Lifetimers such as myself are considered perma VIP. Another major plus for me.
So… that meant if I bought a premium house, I would never lose it because I’m forever VIP. That got me interested. Interested enough to seek out the premium housing areas to at least take a peek when I logged in last week.
First, I had to figure out how to get to the neighborhoods to view the housing and determine if this was something I wanted. I’d never been to Rohan or Gondor before, so how was I supposed to reach the housing areas?
After digging around a bit, I learned there’s a building right near the Bree Town Hall that’s simply labeled “Broker”. Inside the Housing Broker, you can find a bunch of NPCs that will send you to all the housing areas to tour the different styles and purchase housing if you like.
I spent an afternoon touring the different neighborhoods, getting the vibes of the locations and looking for spots that resonated with me. No surprise that I was taken by the horse-themed housing in Kingstead Meadows. But I also thought the ocean view of the Gondor property was very nice!
I learned that the newer Gondor housing has three types – fancy, fancier, and kinhall – whereas Rohan just has house and kinhall options. So individuals have two sizes of houses to choose from in Gondor and just one with the same layout in the Rohan neighborhoods.
Do keep in mind the layout of the houses is different between Kingstead Meadows and Eastfold Hills, so it’s sorta like you get a choice between two housing styles in Rohan in that respect. Also, it seems one house in every Rohan neighborhood has either a cave or a tower – though good luck in getting that one because I have a feeling those are all snatched up.
I picked a spot – you knew I was going to fall for this, right? – I fell in love with 1 Mare Street, which was next to a pond with weeping willows and wild horses. Very nice.
LOTRO Point Hoard
Then, it just came down to actually making the purchase. You know how I said I’ve been a lifetimer who hasn’t logged in much for about 10 years? Well… my LOTRO points balance speaks to this.
LOTRO has been loyally paying me 500 points every month, even though I haven’t been playing. I came back to 58,252 points in the bank.
When I logged in back in March and saw this, my first thought was to use them to buy expansions. Thankfully, I didn’t because they just gave us most of that for free, including new races and classes.
To buy a premium house in LOTRO, it costs Mithril Coins or Housing Writs, both which you can buy with points. I think it cost me something like 4,000 points to purchase the Mithril needed for the housing cost.
This… was obviously not a problem given how much I had banked.
In fact, I bought two houses and still have lots of points left over even after that and maxing out my storage options.
I found a nice spot in the Gondor housing area that was just up hill from all the vendors and storage and commodities that you’d ever want. So I picked up a house there simply for convenience. All my characters have a free warp there and it includes a long-range stablemaster among those NPCs – so I can just ride away wherever I need to go after I take care of business.
I realize this post is getting much longer than I expected it to, though I have a lot more to write about these houses. So I guess I’ll call it a post here and pick up with a part two later!