Why ask?

June 18, 2009

Ah, game forums… they can be fun to read, diverting, interesting, full of dev comments (if you happen to play the US game, or if they stop by to see the Euro players from time to time – depending on game). But they’re also a big timesink and can often leave you feeling a lot more depressed about the game or your class that you were when you stopped by.

I often pop in the Captain forums on the Turbine site (Euro ones aren’t quite so amusing, they’re full of quite useful info). The American forums have everything you might want, hints on gear, discussion of legendary item traits that are good or bad, traiting advice, and general discussion of the Captain class. They very very rarely get devs stopping in, like some of the other class forums. And from always being a bit buggy at launch, Captains are generally a quite amusing bunch, ready to laugh at the problems the class is having as another in the long list of bugs and issues we’ve had on our long journey to balance (which is where we are now, in my opinion).

Yesterday I was browsing a dangerous thread. The suggestions thread. All the things you’d like to see added to the captain class. Here’s a few of my favourite snippets:

Powerful Speech- Increases group power by 5% for 30 minutes. Can not be used with Motivating Speech.

We start with one that makes complete sense and adds to the Captain’s buffing choice. I always thought it was strange we could buff one but not the other, but I think it stems from health being ‘morale’ in LotRO. However, we do have a power buff on our banner/herald, so it’s not unfeasible.

Deadly Force- +10% melee damage for 10s and next skill will critical. 5 Min CD, usable on self or party member.

Innocently worded, but too dangerous with Runekeepers and Hunters out there. And I’m not sure we need any more melee buffs for ourselves right now. But see? Still on the sensible side…

Captain of the West (Legendary Trait)- You summon 4 Heralds to help in your fight. One heals, one returns Power, and two help fend off your foes. The Healer returns 400 Morale every 4 seconds for 20 seconds (2000 Morale) and the Power Healer returns 200 Power every 4 seconds for 20 seconds (1000 Power). The two remaining heralds are comparable to an Oathbreaker Herald. All four heralds are Signatures, and can be attacked by mobs.
Duration: 20 seconds
Power: 1000 Power to cast
Cooldown: 30 Minutes

I read it and went ‘wow, that’d rock’ and then spent a while chuckling at the concept of them really putting this in-game. It’s totally out of whack with other legendary traits and is way too powerful to give to players. Even with a 20s duration that’s more than just a wipe-save. It’s a power/health reboot with additional dps and tanking too!

I just want our kick to have a knockback ability. They could call it the “kick of SPARTA!” and we could go about booting mobs off ledges and into deep pits.

Sensible suggestion, worded amusingly!

In Harms Way: You redirect ALL if your fellowships damage to yourself… *sigh*#

Referring to our altered skill (it’s now 50% damage returned to self). You can’t really have a thread without a reference to a prior ‘nerf’, but I liked the wistful wording.

Stealing the Conjunction Function…As a captain you lead the group once every 30 mins you are able to do a solo 6 man conjuntion function. and basically as most know you can set a conjunction for the group to aim for…well with this move the captain automatically does this…all 6 parts.

Definitely my favourite for comedy value. Um yeah… not only did they think up a lousy name, but it’s so obviously never going to happen, also. But I did have a 1s consideration of it and smiled evilly.

“Where did my herald go?” – Your herald runs off and aggros everything within a 50yd radius, then gets stuck and despawns so you have to fight all the aggro without him! 30sec Cd – costs 100 power.
“Unstuck Herald” – You call your herald to your side from getting stuck then slap him with a large fish. 1min CD – 50 power

Ah, I’d forgotten how heralds used to act when I used them. For the record, I gave mine up for banners and a self-heal.

Anyway, you get my point and this thread was a bit more fun because it asked for what the skill should be called, and for the most part people tried to think up Captain-y titles and roles for the skills. But Captains are only group leaders in concept and the devs have only really tweaked at Captains all the way through until legendary lines in Moria gave us more definition in our multiple roles.

I’m willing to bet that every class has a forum thread like this one, dotted with sensible and ridiculous things we want for our favourite classes. Although there’s people out there who can think like developers and write worthy posts on what should or shouldn’t be done to a game or class, I’m not one of them. I find it refreshing to look at a class thread like this from time to time and allow myself and my co-Captains to just lay back and dream before the cold reality of dawn and we go back to knowing it doesn’t matter too much what we think*, all that matters is that we enjoy the class as it currently is!

*of course, I’m sure all feedback is listened to and properly considered. (You don’t have to be a cynic to play a Captain, it just helps!)



  1. Us captains have thick skin and on the contrary, I think a lot of us are optimists. We wouldn’t have stuck with it so long if we weren’t.

    It’s been a while since I stopped in at the captain forums. I should follow your lead and do so from time to time. Hehe.

    Nice post! Good to see some love for the captains, if it its from one of our own (versus a dev).

    • I still love the fact they gave us a trait called Relentless Optimism. If I were a dev I’d love coming up with skill names!

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