When Lord of the Rings Online first went free-to-play, I jumped on board, curious to see how well Turbine, the celebrated developer of other MMORPGs such as Asheron’s Call, could capture Tolkien’s legendary Middle-Earth. It’s not an easy task, as Middle-Earth is such a foundational part of my love for Fantasy that it would be near impossible to do justice to the world with a digital playground. Naturally, wanting to start life in The Shire, I created a cute Hobbit Minstrel named Cabenting, and jumped in feet first.
For hours afterwards, I was lost in Middle-Earth. Not just a digital playground version, but the Middle-Earth. I was in love.