Helm's Deep features the new region of Western Rohan, which is the area of Rohan featured in the Lord of the Rings movies for the uninitiated. Focused on the story of King Theoden, players will be able to take part in scenes directly from the movie and book. The Fellowship is in Rohan at the same time the players will be, meaning players can directly speak to Gandalf, Legolas, or even Theoden himself. Players will also have the opportunity to see Gandalf purge Theoden of Wormtongue's influence, one of the first times that the game's story and the books' story will directly cross.
With over 300 new quests in the Westfold, players will have lots of opportunity to interact with the history and setting of the Horse-Lords. Players will be able to see iconic and beautiful locations, such as the barrows Theoden and Eomer's ancestors, or even the Dark Door. They'll also engage with the lives of individuals in Rohan, woven seamlessly into the larger epic story that the development team is looking to tell with the expansion.
Helm's Deep will also feature lots of mechanical updates for players within LotRO. In addition to a plethora of changes coming to each class to help with leveling, the developers at Turbine are looking at bringing meaningful choice and distinction to class and build selection. In order to address these issues, the developers have created a new Trait Tree interface, which will allow players to build their character into one of several different specializations. Trait points will be earned via leveling, or even through the completion of certain quests. Turbine's goal with Trait Trees is to allow players to choose what type of build they want to explore with their character, and then to make them really good at the one thing they're focused on. The class update also includes updated animations and effects for many of the class abilities. The developers didn't have too much to say to this end, saying that more information would be on the way soon.
Helm's Deep currently has no estimated release date, but developers claim that one is Coming Soon. In the meantime, be sure to keep an eye out for the Dev Diaries that Turbine will be releasing over the coming weeks.
Though this was only a quick peek at the most exciting parts of LotRO: Helm's Deep, it promises to have hours of well-crafted, compelling content overflowing with the legendary lore of Lord of the Rings. Even better, the new form of end-game content, and the culmination of the classic LotR story blending with the players' adventures, Helm's Deep will be a great addition to the world story and growth of Lord of the Rings Online.
Begin your own epic adventure as the Race of Man, Elf, Dwarf, or Hobbit. Based on the books written by J. R. R. Tolkien and not the movies, LOTRO is a closest thing you can get to strolling through Middle-Earth with a solid walking stick in your hand as the road goes ever on and on.