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Gord Downie Memorialized in LOTRO

Posted by Suzie Ford on Oct 20, 2017  | Comments

Gord Downie Memorialized in LOTRO - MMORPG.com

One of Canada's most celebrated personalities died earlier this week. Gord Downie was a member of The Tragically Hip and passed away from brain cancer on October 17th. In a poignant new blog post, Lead World Builder Chris Pierson has written about Downie's influence on his work on the game and more. To celebrate Downie's life, he has been memorialized in Lord of the Rings Online, playing the part of Garthebir, the Fortress Keeper, a balding, hat-wearing minstrel.

I mention this because I put Gord in LOTRO. Not in a flashy way – he’d have hated that – but as a tribute to a man I respected and revered, and whose music has blared through my headphones throughout my time shaping Middle-earth. His music fueled the world of this game, and so I gave him a place of his own. Earlier this year, when the time came to make the Field of Cormallen, when the Free Peoples honour Frodo and Sam, I realized we knew nothing about the minstrel who sings their song – not what he looked like, or even his name. I immediately knew how to honour him. I asked MadeofLions, who was making the minstrel NPC, if he could be bald, have a hat, and be well-dressed (though the shiny metallic suit felt a little too on the nose). And I named him Garthebir, which means “fortress-keeper” in Sindarin – the closest I could find to the etymology of Downie. And there he stands today, alongside the kings of Gondor and Rohan, and the Ringbearers, and Gandalf, singing songs of wonder and loss.

You can read the full text of the post on the Lord of the Rings Online site.

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Suzie Ford / Suzie is the Associate Editor and News Manager at MMORPG.com. Follow her on Twitter @MMORPGMom
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