Istaria was on maintenance: not played at all.
All the day was spent in beautifull, grassy lands of Bree. Almost no grind: as someone told, there is little need to grind since there are quests. Many of them, tolkienists should be excited with the fact of meeting some legendary Tolkien-world figures.
Took that time-based quest: it became clear, I needed to kill nearby bears untill one of them dropped some treasure. Then went for Brigands - needed to loot some stuff from them which was done once again. As in most quests (Istarian included) I needed to tour from one NPC to another, almost from one corner to other. Lately in the game - took quest to kill some named spider. Went there only to notice someone else has done it, so I just stood and waited. Spider appeared, after some fight I was victorious and quest was over.
Earned my Turbine points by completing deed about quests from Bree and now doing "Advanced" version for this. Also earned those points by killing 60 Brigands (and now can proudly bear title "Watcher of the roads").
Quests are very good. Of course, I rarely read text, since "kill X bears", "collect Y leaves" does not require too much reading. But the whole atmosphere is impressive, I almost immerse into their world. However, Turbine did a little trick with the quests: it did not separate single player from group ("fellowship").
My own quest about Blackwold brigands - it went rather good untill I had to enter ruins, go into the middle and kill some leader. Of course, I was killed, because had no chance against some 10 evil guys. Tried one way and another - no result. Tried to climb to mountain and ambush evil guys - but mountain is not climable.
Then came second quest, seemed easier: to kill one Blackwold wolf-breeder and poison wolf-food. Of course, over-guarded ruins again. Tried different approach: killed a guard, them another too...bnut one guard ran off only to return with reinforcements. Was killed second time.
To make things worse, there was no option to call for reinforcements: no one from the Guild was nearby, no players were nearby. Some of them (lvl.8-10) were running, but their level was too low to be effective (mine lvl.11 is too low...). Returned, angry and in despair. Istaria has some quests that require group, but it is usually mentioned in the text, like "Bring some friends with you".
I was just alone. I was not a hero bravely standing before the armies of Sauron - felt more like a rebel, waiting in ambush untill that group of guards leaves area. I was thinking it was just hopeless: I won't make it to the heart of the ruins which are over-guarded and I can't ask some 10-20 high levelled players to cover me and I can't ask lower lvl. players to cover me. Even same lvl. as I players may be just too low.
Overall impressions about Lotro: I'm satisfied, almost no need to grind, quests are very good, but sometimes just a bit hard. NPCs are coded to behave in some way, but player may only guess it. Example: Champion trainer in Archet won't train me - I had to go to other town instead (maybe he could have told: "Sorry, I can't train you any further, seek my colleague in other town"?). Of course, point/cash store is advertised each time I gain points. They do press player to spent cash, but so far they are doing it in a subtle way, not too agressive.
And so the day was ended and it was good in Lotro.