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Before the Shadow and Update 34 Are Live in The Lord of the Rings Online

Both bring significant changes and new content

Christina Gonzalez Posted:
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After a one-week delay to polish things up before release, the Before the Shadow mini-expansion and Update 34 are now live in The Lord of the Rings Online.

The greatest changes come with Before the Shadow, which introduces several new zones and additional polish to the early game, including an overhauled starting experience. The new Delving system lets all levels of characters take part in even the new content. Of course, there’s new story too, set in the days where the threat was rising from those who worked to restore Angmar. Even travel with Boromir and experience both familiar and new things. 

With Update 34, there are some overhauls, with the most significant being that class trait trees have been completely reset. This Is because the team has moved class trait points away from Quest and deeds and instead you will get them just by leveling. You’ll still have a total of 98 points when you reach level 140, and you will stop earning points. Already leveled out, then you should simply have all your points to spend where you see fit for your preferred specializations.

The class balance changes and overhauls continue, with the Minstrel, Burglar, and Brawler getting special attention. These three classes have some important changes that are intended to assign the correct bonuses, increase viability, make them work beter in teams, and other improvements. There are also changes among classes that should let characters gear up more appropriately and faster. The Minstrel rework continues here, with additional changes following previous changes, including updated descriptions and tooltips.

This update also brings a number of continued overhauls to Monster Play, which the team has been working with the community and getting feedback on in order to overhaul and make things more appealing. There is a new quest in Monster Play that introduces the ability to earn Clan Blessings, a new way to enhance monster characters.

There’s a ton more in the full release notes, including a breakdown of what yo expect if you’ve bought the new content, or even to keep up with all of the changes to just the base game. Read them over at The Lord of the Rings Online.


Christina Gonzalez

Christina is MMORPG.COM’s News Editor and a contributor since 2011. Always a fan of great community and wondering if the same sort of magic that was her first guild exists anymore.