Shamus Plays

Shamus Plays: LOTRO, Part 1

Shamus Young | 20 Jan 2010 17:00
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Boffin looks down the path and sees large, troublesome webs strewn about. Really large. We see large, un-Hobbit-like shapes with a suspicious number of legs. I don't claim to be a ranger or anything, but it's entirely possible we're about to have a spider problem.

Boffin looks out towards where the Nazgul had been, then back down the path at the spider webs, and he thinks for a minute.

Finally he suggests that I go on ahead and clear the way while he stands in the doorway and "keeps watch".

I raise an eyebrow at him, "Boffin, you know I'm a musician, right? And that I hate violence?"

He keeps looking back out towards the road and pretending he can't hear me.

Just a handy tip: If at any point in your life you find yourself asking a musician to kill things for you, then you have screwed up somewhere along the way.

"Boffin", I say in my most calming voice possible, "Let's just say you stand here and keep watch."

He nods his head vigorously.

"And let's say that Black Rider does come back, as you fear. What exactly are you planning on doing about it?"

He slams his eyes shut. Maybe he's telling me he can't bear to picture such a scenario. Or maybe he's showing me he plans to close his eyes and not look if it comes back.

I hate violence, but there's no sense in both of us standing in the doorway until the sun comes up.


I march down the path kill a couple of gigantic spiders. It's nasty, smelly, crunchy work but the spider screeching (did you know spiders screech?) drowns out Boffin's sniveling, so I don't actually mind all that much.

Boffin perks up when the last spider succumbs to my safe-for-children-under-three knife. Then he leads me down the path to a farm.


Farm? This is a farm? There's no farmland. No crops. The only thing here is spiders.

Is this some kind of Hobbit spider farm?

Boffin has decided that in order to reach safety the two of us must kill every single four-foot spider in the Shire. Actually, that's not true. He wants me to kill the spiders while he supervises from the fetal position.

Boffin, you simpering hayseed yokel, did it occur to you that we could just go back the way I came? The post office was perfectly safe, assuming you don't also have a phobia about people named Townsperson.

Eventually I finish killing off this year's bumper crop of spiders. Boffin wants to hide in the farmhouse, but he accidentally breaks off his key in the lock.

I really think there needs to be some kind of rule against being griefed by friendly NPCs.

Great, so I guess we go in the back? Or a window? No? We're leaving? So, I guess this tiny wooden Hobbit-house with a thatched roof is some sort of impenetrable fortress?

Fine. Let's just run further down the path like a couple of ninnies and see what we run into. I mean, it can't be worse than the spiders.


...unless it's another Nazgul.

Through sheer willful stupidity Boffin has managed to lead us all the way around and back to the main road, where we have met the Black Rider again. Or another one. I don't know. It's not like they wear nametags.

The Black Rider is miffed now, and decides to off us. Sigh. I'll probably end up as a withering shade in eternal service to the Dark Lord of the East, which is really going to suck.

Stupid post office.

Shamus Young is the guy behind Reset Button, Twenty Sided, DM of the Rings, and Stolen Pixels.

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