Getting Started

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Game Guides Topics: Getting Started, Game Terms, Commands, Character, Grouping, Music, Travelling

Important Temporary Note

If you are just starting out or are a returning player you have started out or come back at a great time!

Get caught up just in time for the upcoming Fate of Gundabad Expansion with a special coupon Code that will let you acquire all currently-available quest packs permanently on your account(s)! However, you will need to act quickly, as this Coupon Code is available to redeem through November 30th, 2021.

The Coupon Code is: LOTROQUESTS2021 (1/Account, available to redeem through November 30th, 2021) If you are brand new to the game the LOTRO Store is introduced to you in the starter areas. When you open the store there should be a "Redeem Code" link at the top that is were you would put in the LOTROQUESTS2021 code.

They are also selling all expansions before Minas Morgul for the extremely low price of only 99 LOTRO Point  each through November 30th, 2021.

If you take advantage of this great deal you could buy 6 expansions and 2 instance clusters for only 792 LOTRO Point . Then you could farm the LP as mentioned in the acquiring LOTRO Points from Deeds article to save up to buy the Minas Morgul and War of the Three Peaks Expansions!

Official SSG Article


Welcome to the Lord of the Rings Online! The community is glad to have you, this article will help you get familiar with the basic concepts of the game. Wherever your adventure's in Middle-earth take you we hope you enjoy your time in the game.

Choosing a World

Before creating a character, you have to pick a server, or "world", to play on. Pick your server carefully: although it is possible to move your characters to another server for a fee, characters cannot be moved from a Northern American server to a European server, and vise versa.

Weekly World Restarts

It is always a good idea to be aware of server downtime. Effective 5-24-18, SSG will be conducting weekly world restarts to support the health of the game environment once per week during weeks where they do not have other downtime planned. These weekly restarts typically last for about an hour, and take place starting at 8:00 AM Eastern (-5 GMT) on Wednesdays.

Character Creation

Choosing a Race

The first step in character creation is choosing what race your character will be.

The Free Peoples ("Freeps") races available include:

** Available from the Lotro store.

Choosing a Class

Once you have decided what race your character will be, you must choose their class.

The classes available include:

* These two classes are only available...
- with the Mines of Moria expansion, or
- from the Lotro store.
** Available from the Lotro store.
*** Available with the Fate of Gundabad expansion.
See Guide to Classes for an in depth look at each Class.

Race and Class Correlation

You may want to take a look at the table below to help figure out which race and class to choose as sometimes you cannot be the class and race you want. Example: You cannot play a Dwarven Burglar or a Hobbit Captain.

  Beorning Dwarf Elf High Elf Hobbit Man Stout-axe
Beorning Beorning-icon.png
Brawler Brawler-icon.png Brawler-icon.png Brawler-icon.png Brawler-icon.png Brawler-icon.png Brawler-icon.png
Burglar Burglar-icon.png Burglar-icon.png Burglar-icon.png
Captain Captain-icon.png Captain-icon.png
Champion Champion-icon.png Champion-icon.png Champion-icon.png Champion-icon.png Champion-icon.png
Guardian Guardian-icon.png Guardian-icon.png Guardian-icon.png Guardian-icon.png Guardian-icon.png Guardian-icon.png
Hunter Hunter-icon.png Hunter-icon.png Hunter-icon.png Hunter-icon.png Hunter-icon.png Hunter-icon.png
Lore-master Lore-master-icon.png Lore-master-icon.png Lore-master-icon.png
Minstrel Minstrel-icon.png Minstrel-icon.png Minstrel-icon.png Minstrel-icon.png Minstrel-icon.png Minstrel-icon.png
Rune-keeper Rune-keeper-icon.png Rune-keeper-icon.png Rune-keeper-icon.png Rune-keeper-icon.png
Warden Warden-icon.png Warden-icon.png Warden-icon.png Warden-icon.png

Choosing an Origin

Your character comes from one of a few regions which are determined by their race. Choose a region. Each origin (or region) affects your character with slight changes in their appearance, most notably the hair and skin tones.

Man Dwarf Hobbit Elf High Elf Beorning Stout-axe
Bree-land-icon.png Bree-land Blue Mountains-icon.png Blue Mountains Fallohide-icon.png Fallohide Lórien-icon.png Lórien Gondolin Vales of Anduin Stout-axes of Mordor
Dale-lands-icon.png The Dale-lands Iron Hills-icon.png Iron Hills Harfoot-icon.png Harfoot Lindon-icon.png Lindon Imladris
Gondor-icon.png Gondor The Lonely Mountain-icon.png The Lonely Mountain Stoor-icon.png Stoor Mirkwood-icon.png Mirkwood Nargothrond
Rohan-icon.png Rohan Grey Mountains-icon.png Grey Mountains Rivendell-icon.png Rivendell Beleriand
White Mountains-icon.png White Mountains Edhellond-icon.png Edhellond Ossiriand
See Guide to Origins for detailed information about each origin.

Choosing an Appearance

Another step in character creation is choosing what your character will look like. There are many different options and it is best to scroll through each one to become familiar with what each race has available. Keep in mind that later you can make changes to some appearance items at a barber shop (i.e. hair style, color, facial hair, etc). Take your time and prepare to dazzle others as you enter Middle-earth.

Choosing a Name

This can sometimes be the most difficult part of character creation for some people: a name and an appearance is what gives your character life. First, make sure that the appearance and other features are the way you desire. Then, take your character's name seriously, and do your best to follow the examples given for the race. The only way to check whether a particular name is already claimed is to enter it and try. The game does offer the ability to change your name at any time, but there is a fee.

Monster Play

While Monster Play is not part of character creation it is worth to be mentioned now. Once one of your characters reaches level 10 you are able to enter Monster Play where you may choose to play with the forces of Army of Angmar ("creeps"). The following races / classes are available:
See Monster Play Character for details about each race and class for monster play.

Entering Middle-earth

The User Interface

You are now ready to enter Middle-earth. This might be a good moment to familiarize yourself with the User Interface.

Introduction Sequence

Once you create your character and enter Middle-earth you are put into a prologue sequence, an instance, that teaches you the very basics of movement, attacking, looting, and so forth. Each race will face a different sequence and storyline according to how they relate to the epic tale in LOTRO.

Introduction Quests

After the prologue a new character must complete a series of Epic Introduction Quests. These quests are very simple and generally they do not require any assistance.

Introduction Areas

The introduction quests take place in one of five separate areas. See starter area for more detailed information.

High Elves start in Dagorlad.
Dwarves and Elves begin in Thorin's Gate.
Hobbits and Men begin in Archet Dale.
Beornings begin in the Vales of Anduin then move to Archet Dale.
Stout-axes begin in Barad-dûr then move to Ered Luin and end up in Thorin's Gate.

Some intro areas become inaccessible after completing the final quest. Others while accessible will not be the same as they were in the intro area. So be sure you finish all the stuff you want in the intro area before moving on. The final quest will warn you that after completing the area will become inaccessible.

The Aftermath

Upon completing the Epic Introduction Quests a new character enters the lands of Middle-earth where the world awaits. Now you start the true adventures, you may meet up with others who have left the introduction areas, and you may be invited to a Kinship.

At this point, each race continues their epic quests in different regions, however a character is not stuck with that region if you decide to travel elsewhere. Eventually a new character is guided by quests to explore all of the other areas as well.

The beginning areas include:

Game Overview

So, your character made it through the introduction and now you're really excited about starting the real adventure. But, where to begin? Middle-earth is vast and there is so much that needs to be done! Well, do not worry about the big stuff yet, the character just started out and has to prove itself first.

Things a new character may want to check out and become familiar with:

Prologue Quests

To begin adventuring within any one of these areas your new character must start the Epic Prologue Quests by speaking with the person mentioned in the quest log from the Epic Introduction Quests that was just completed.
It is also wise to pick up interesting quest rings found in the current area. Happy adventuring!

Continued Character Overviews

We hope you have enjoyed our article to get you started. More about how your character works, including its stats, traits, weapons, and armor proficiencies is detailed in the Character article.

Continued Game Guides

  • Want to become a master of keyboard commands see Commands for more info.
  • Tired of walking? See the article Mounts for detailed information on acquiring a mount.
  • Want to customize your clothing and find something that fits your style see Cosmetics for info on the robust cosmetic item system.
  • The game is always evolving make sure you keep up to date on the patch notes.

Technical Information

Window's Client System Requirements

  • Revised System recommendations as of 23 May 2021
Minimum Recommended
Operating System: Windows 7 (64bit recommended for high resolution) Windows 7 64bit Service Pack 1 or newer
Processor: Core 2 Duo / AMD Athlon II or better Core i7 / AMD FX-8100 or better
Memory: 2GB 4GB minimum
Graphics: GeForce 7XXX / ATI Radeon HD 3000 series with 512MB or more of dedicated video memory Nvidia Geforce 8XXX / AMD Radeon HD 6### series or newer with 1GB or more of dedicated video memory
Internet Connection: Cable/DSL or equivalent Cable or better
DirectX: DirectX 9.0c DirectX 11
Disk Space: 32GB for high resolution *(Allow for additional +3GB for international builds) 32GB for high resolution (Allow for additional +3GB for international builds)

* High resolution game data or "Hi-res Textures" are only recommended for 64bit versions of Windows

Additional Notes:

Please keep in mind that these are requirements we feel should allow you to run the game reliably at low to moderate settings. If you wish to experience the game at the highest settings, additional system memory and higher end graphics cards should be considered. If you are running below any of these requirements, you may encounter graphical issues or poor overall game play performance, which SSG may be unable to troubleshoot.

DVD Installs: All versions of the DVD based installation should not be used simply due to the age of the game version they install, it is recommended that the up to date installation download be used instead of any DVD disk based installation methods to avoid issues updating and connecting.

Why is DirectX 9.0c required when I have DirectX 10 or 11, or I already have 9 installed?

The game requires specific files relating to DirectX 9.0c that may not be included with later versions of DirectX, as each is a separate installation and has separate files. Additionally, the game may also require specific customized versions of DirectX files that may not be included with your version of DirectX, and as such it may require these customized files are also installed in order to function correctly.

DirectX information can be found at and DirectX can also be updated via the site here as well.

Unsupported Operating Systems:
Currently LOTRO is not supported on the following operating systems or hardware:

  • Windows Vista or earlier versions
  • MAC
  • Any beta or preview versions of Windows releases
  • Linux (See latest release in WineHQ AppDB for an unofficial option)
  • PlayStation, Nintendo, or XBox hardware

If you need additional assistance, please contact Standing Stone Games Technical Support.

Note: The above technical support notes and the system requirements were taken from the official SSG support article found here: SSG Support Article.

Mac Client System Requirements

Minimum Recommended*
Processor: Processor: 2.0 GHz Intel Core i5 Processor: 2.0 GHz Intel Core i7
Video: Intel HD Graphics 3000 or better NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 650M or better
OS: OSX 10.7.5 OSX 10.7.5
Memory: 2 GB 4 GB
Disk Space: 25 GB available 25 GB available
Internet: Broadband - DSL/Cable Broadband - DSL/Cable
Sound: Integrated Sound Integrated Sound
* Turbine has not posted any specs for the Mac Client on the LOTRO website. These specs are from the Steam information page on the Mac Client.
* Details on the Mac Client can be found here: Mac Client