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Just want to start this post by saying that I am neither a fanboi or a hater of any MMO. I've tried all the 'mainstream' MMOs in the last 10 years and dont love or hate any of them.
Now on with my post.... I have recently been trying out a lot of the MMOs I quit in the past as like a lot of you I am not currently grabbed by any of the MMOs on the market and feel that what is required is some blue sky thinking to create something unique that actually works.
What I find that a lot of MMOs these days seem to lack a sense of community that I first saw in vanilla WoW when there wasnt sites like thottbot or Alakhazm (SP?) providing indepth walkthroughs to every quest, and to be able to do some quests required cooperation between players. I would regardly be approached by people just looking to chat and quest together, which usually lasted for my whole playtime (sometimes several hours). Well touch wood I seem to have found such a community on LoTRO.
I have been posting in the advice channel regulary as it has been well over a year since I first tried the game (I played it for about a month at launch and quit due to a memory leak) and although you get a few jokers (which as far as I am concerned is fine as it gives plenty of laughs), you do get people willing to go out of there way to help you.
An example of this is last night where I couldn't find some patrolling mob (a giant spider) and I ended up posting several times in the advice channel giving people updates of where I was looking and not one person called me a 'noob' or an 'idiot', but instead someone actually went out of their way to help me physically find the spider, which resulted in us grouping up for the rest of the evening.
Another example is of a guy just running up to me and we started talking and again we ended up grouping for the rest of the evening.
I have not felt this sense of community in a game for a number of years (I am on the Snowbourn EU server if anyone is interested). I am seriously impressed with LoTROs sense of community and even though there are some niggling things that bother me (the way they have buffed xp in the lower lvls so you end up skipping tons of quests for starters), I think I will continue to play this game for a number of months to come.