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Character Topics: Getting Started, Character Stats, Races, Classes, Skills, Traits, Cosmetic


In the Lord of the Rings Online, the concepts of Skills and Traits are deeply intertwined.
As you progress through the Lord of the Rings Online, your character will earn Traits. From level 6 on you can view the Trait Menu using the J key.
A character's "Traits" define various capabilities, both defensive and offensive, which a character may utilize.
Some of these are active and some are passive, but both types must be "Equipped" ("Slotted") before their effects can be realized.
Each Trait falls into one of three categories: Class, Virtue, or Racial.
  • Class Traits are the primary mechanism for defining your Character's abilities (Skills). They are defined in Trait Trees using Class Trait Points.
Class Trait Points are gained by completing Deeds, Quests and simply by leveling (the first you gain with completing level 7), these are then "invested" in your Trait Tree to enable your Skills.
The acquisition of most Class Trait Points can be tracked via the Deed Log under the first tab "Class/Race/Epic" and the first sub-tab, Class.
  • By "Equipping" ("slotting") different Virtues and Racial Traits one gains benefits which range from small bonuses to your Skills (as defined in your current Specialization in your Trait Tree) to unlocking specialized abilities available only to your race.
Virtues and Racial Traits are gained by completing Deeds, and similar accomplishments.
Many of the bonuses derived from Virtues "stack" providing you even greater benefits to your abilities.
  • Virtues can give you a significant advantage. Your "valuation" of different virtues will change as you progress through your career. Things like resistances and seemingly "weak" gains can mean the difference between success and failure in many encounters. As such, you will wish to collect as many of them as you are able to give you the widest range of options.

Equipping Traits

Although your character can earn up to twenty different Virtue Traits and nine Racial Traits, you may only equip a limited number of traits at one time.
As your character gains levels, those slots will automatically open up one at a time, per the levels in the table below.
  • Virtues and Racial Traits can be "Equipped" ("slotted") just as you can change your "Specialization."
  • These changes may be made any time you are not in combat, "on-the fly," no visit to a Bard is needed.
Changes are made simply by using your Trait Tree Panel, thereby allowing skills to be fine-tuned to situations.
At this time, one must open the Trait Tree Panel to click on the specialization desired. This cannot be quick-slotted.
  • There is no limit to the number of times you may change your equipped traits.
As you change your Specialization, the skills in your your Quickslots will change accordingly.
  • Class Traits are equipped through Trait Trees using Class Trait Points.
  • Racial Traits and Virtues are equipped in slots which become available as your character advances.

Levels at which new Virtue and Racial Slots become available:

Slot 1 Slot 2 Slot 3 Slot 4 Slot 5
Virtue: 7 9 11 17 23
Race: 13 19 25 31 37

Trait Tree Panel

Traits as seen by a new F2P player
  • The Trait Tree panels are exposed by typing "j" or clicking on the image of Gandalf on your Toolbar-left, Slot-7 (the default location).
The image at the right is the Trait Tree window as seen by a new F2P or Premium player.
  • Each Class page contains a description of the unique Trait Tree for that Class.
Each Class has three specializations available.
  • Spec One
  • Spec Two
  • Spec Three
  • Once a Specialization is selected, you receive one or two skills immediately as described.
Class Trait Points are then invested in that Specialization at the rate of one point per Skill rank.
If you wish to invest points in a Skill from a second Specialization, you can do so, however, the cost is TWO Class Trait Points -- making this an expensive proposition until you approach Level Cap!

Bonus Skills

  • For every five Class Trait Points spent in the primary specialization, an additional "Bonus" Skill is unlocked, until all seven Bonus Skills for that specialization are unlocked (when thirty-five (35) points have been spent).
  • NOTE: For F2P and Premium characters, each "Bonus" skill must be unlocked with a purchase from the LOTRO Store (Character > Character Upgrades > Trait Slots> LOTRO Store Class Trait Set Unlock - (95 LOTRO Point ) -- Note that this is PER CHARACTER, not Per Account!
Each unlock from the store unlocks that tier of bonus skills for all specializations of that character. So in order to unlock all Bonus skills for a single character, 7 purchases must be made.
Free to play or Premium characters that purchased Class Trait or Legendary Class Trait unlocks prior to the Helm's Deep update will find that each unlock purchased is converted to an unlocked Bonus Skill in the new Trait Tree system.
  • For VIP (subscription) players no purchase is necessary.

Navigating the Trait Tree Panel

  • In the upper left are three icons:
  • A shield -- the Trait Trees
  • A circle around a Head and Shoulders -- The Race Traits
  • A stylized Eagle -- the Virtue Traits

Saving configurations

  • All players begin with the ability to save two different configurations of Traits.
  • You can switch between these saved configurations "on-the-fly", as long as you are out of combat, no visit to a Bard is needed.
  • In the upper right of the Class Traits panel are the numerals 1 and 2, and a symbol for the Mithril Coin.
  • You can save two Trait Tree "Specialization" layouts by default.
  • Up to five additional "saves" may be purchased for 100 Mithril Coin , up to a total of seven. Note that each purchase is just for a single character.

Aid to Understanding - Class Trait Tree Planner

Overwhelmed by detail?

The LOTRO Class Trait Tree Planner was created by players to assist others visualise and understand how class trait trees work.

Players wishing to more quickly grasp some of the intricacies of Class Trait Trees are recommended to visit this site.

Class Trait Points

With Update 12, Helm's Deep, a new Game Mechanic, Trait Trees, was introduced.
Similar to the War-steed Traits Trait system in usage, you acquire and apply points to various categories of "Traits" enabling and/or enhancing them.
Upon starting the game, you will not have any trait "slots" or Class Trait Points available to you.
  • At Level 6 a character may select a Specialization. There are three choices for each class.
An "Alert" will appear indicating "Specialization Needed"

A Class Trait Point-icon.png Class Trait Point is used to populate the Trait Tree of a particular character.
Trait Points begin to accumulate every other level beginning at level 7, i.e. one point at every odd numbered level. After level 105, trait points are only earned every three levels.
Between 7 and 105: (Level - 5) / 2 = base class trait points. So at level 105 a character would have (105 - 5) / 2 = 50 base class trait points.
They are also earned by a combination of quests, deeds, and other activities within LOTRO.

Maximum Trait Points

  • As of Update 27, there are 96 class trait points available from all sources for a Level 130 character, though only 95 can be used.
50 Every odd level from 7 to 105
3 Every third level to 115 (108, 111, 114)
1 Level 120
Class Quests and Deeds
8 Complete class meta deeds
3 Collect all of the Legendary Book Pages (minimum level 39)
1 Complete the item-collecting Class quest chain (minimum level 45)
Moria Quests and Deeds
1 Complete the Level 58 Class Quests in Moria (Beorning, replaced with Tier 8 class deeds)
1 Reach Kindred reputation with the Iron Garrison Guards, then purchase a class-specific book from the vendor (minimum level 58)
1 Complete the deed: The Mines of Moria
Rohan Quests and Deeds
5 West Rohan quest chains
Note: you must begin with Quest:Word from Edoras even if you have completed the Epic questline already.
Epic Battles
2 Earn 200 Promotion Points (one Trait point for each hundred) in Epic Battles. All 200 Promotion points can be purchased in the LOTRO Store
Gondor Quests and Deeds
4 Central Gondor quest chains
1 Complete the quest [100] Ashes and Stars, Chapter 4 in Eastern Gondor
2 Complete the deeds Quests of Old Anórien and Deeds of Old Anórien. Finishing the latter requires finishing the former.
Epic Quests
1 [100] Volume IV, Book 2, Chapter 9: Even In Darkness
1 [100] Volume IV, Book 4, Chapter 10: The Defence of Minas Tirith
1 [100] Volume IV, Book 4, Chapter 11: Hammer of the Underworld
1 [105] Volume IV, Book 8, Chapter 7: Mordor Triumphant
1 [105] Volume IV, Book 9, Chapter 5: The Next Adventure
1 [115] Black Book of Mordor, Chapter 4.4: Union of Evil
1 [115] Black Book of Mordor, Chapter 5.5: The Walls Brought Down
1 [120] Black Book of Mordor, Chapter 8.7: The First Promise
1 [120] Black Book of Mordor, Chapter 10.7: The Arrival of the Wise
1 [122] Black Book of Mordor, Chapter 12.5: The End of the Tale
1 [128] Black Book of Mordor, Chapter 14.5: A Final Escape
1 [130] The Legacy of Durin and the Trials of the Dwarves, Chapter 2.7: A Thirst For Blood
1 Volume V, Book 1, Chapter 8: The Wedding Banquet


  • The "Mines of Moria" point is logged in your Deed Log under "Class/Race/Epic," on the "EPIC tab.
  • The Lvl 50 Class Quest point is logged in your Quest Log under completed quests, under your class.
  • The Lvl 58 Class Quest point is logged as a Deed in your Deed Log by name.
  • Unlike other classes, Beornings receive one Class Trait Point for each of their level 15 and level 30 class quests. In exchange, they only have a single class quest in Moria. Beornings don't earn a trait point for the Mines of Moria epic book, nor do they have a book to purchase from the Iron Garrison vendor.


General Class Deed Summaries by Class








Trait Types

Every character has three types of traits that can be earned: Virtues, Racial Traits, and Class Traits.


Virtues as seen by a new F2P player
  • The Trait Tree panels are exposed by typing "j" or clicking on the image of Gandalf on your Toolbar Left Slot 7 (the default).
Clicking on the third button, the "Eagle head," in the upper left corner will expose the Virtue panel.
Virtues give enhancements to all races and classes that improve the character's combat abilities (e.g., increase to power regeneration, or increase chance to evade damage). Most Virtues are acquired and improved on by completing Deeds.
Upon completing the introductory instance, your character will automatically acquire Deeds as he or she accomplishes different goals in the game. Most deeds are tiered; the reward for the first tier of a deed is generally a title; after that, each deed tier will award an increase to a particular Virtue. Virtues, once acquired, can be improved by completing additional deeds.
  • For a full list of effects given by every tier of every virtue, as well as the deeds that advance each virtue, visit the Virtues page.
  • For a full list of virtues by region, visit the Virtues by Region page.

List of Virtues:

Charity Compassion Confidence Determination
Discipline Empathy Fidelity Fortitude
Honesty Honour Idealism Innocence
Justice Loyalty Mercy Patience
Tolerance Valour Wisdom Zeal
  • You can slot a maximum of 5 out of 20 Virtues.
  • VIP players have all virtue slots unlocked. When no longer VIP, your characters retain all these slots.
  • Premium and F2P players have 2 unlocked, but can purchase additional slots in the LOTRO Store.

Racial Traits

Race Traits as seen by a new F2P player
  • The Trait Tree panels are exposed by typing "j" or clicking on the image of Gandalf on your Toolbar Left Slot 7 (the default).
Clicking on the second button, the "circled portrait", in the upper left corner will expose the Racial Trait panel.
Racial Traits are unique to each race. Most require you to defeat a specified number of certain mob type. The first slot opens up at level 13, which is also when you can begin working toward your first Racial Trait. Most Racial Traits will provide your character with a special skill or fast travel ability (e.g., Return to Rivendell).
  • You can slot a maximum of 5 out of 9 Racial Traits.
  • VIP players have all racial slots unlocked. When no longer VIP, your characters retain all these slots.
  • Premium and F2P players have 2 unlocked, but can purchase additional slots in the LOTRO Store.
  • Simply drag the completed trait to an open slot on the Race Traits page of the Trait Tree Panel.
  • Mousing over the individual Traits will display a tool-tip describing the benefits of that Trait.
  • The requirements for each trait will appear in your Deed Log "Class/Race/Epic" on the second tab "Race & Social."
Note however, that they will not appear until you have accomplished the "first step" -- typically killing a Mob of some type, a Goblin, Orc or Worm, for example.

Class Traits

Class Traits contribute to the acquisition of Class Trait Points and are therefore integrated into the Trait Tree system.
You begin working toward Class Traits as soon as you leave the Introduction Area and begin using your skills. Most Class Traits require that you use a certain skill a specified number of times (frequently limited to a maximum number of uses per day). A few traits require a Quest to obtain.
Class Traits are unique to each class and are enumerated on the appropriate Deed pages below.
  • Each Meta Deed (8) and each General Class Deed (7) grant one Trait Point each for a possible maximum total of 15 Trait Points.
Individual components of Meta Deeds grant 5 LOTRO Point  only.
Sub Deeds and Meta deeds are not visible in your Deed Log until one of the appropriate skills is used triggering the Deed.
  • All Meta Deed points are logged in your Deed Log under "Class/Race/Epic," on the "Class tab.

Virtue and Racial Trait Status

Notice that any icon can be hovered to see its description. As you start new deeds towards a trait (Earning), or once the deed is completed (Earned) or equipped, you'll see the panels changing:
Not earned (default) Trait-Not earned-icon.png Earning Trait-Earning-icon.png Earned, not equipped Trait-Earned-icon.png Equipped Trait-Equipped-icon.png