Former Mythic Entertainment community rep Sanya Weathers has teamed up with Massive Gamer to publish a detailed preview of The Lord of the Rings Online: Mines of Moria.
It's beautifully written, for another thing. In most MMOGs, you really get a sense of the writers trying just a little too hard to be funny, to be in character, to fit neatly in the stereotype of Fantasy Fiction. Not here. The writers were pitch perfect in every way. If you blow through the quests, just clicking (accept) on everything, you may walk away feeling like you have just done a ridiculous number of (kill ten goblins/bugs/orcs) quests. And, um, to be honest, you have. But if you read the text, you also feel like you have been talking to characters right out of the books. There's a sense of immersion, of being in the story, as opposed to a reinvention of the quest wheel.
It has the feel of a true labyrinth, and there are plenty of moments where you can see where you have to go, but not immediately how you are going to get there. There is a great sense of never knowing quite what is around the next corner, but it's all so wonderfully designed that there is almost always something around that corner; a new monster, a quest item, a new location to fill in on your map. The vastness of the scale makes it all seem a bit empty, but there are actually plenty of monsters.