I played my Hobbit Minstrel through the starter area last night. I am amazed at how the area and its quests have been compressed to tell just the essence of your story in Middle Earth.
Amdir was always a favorite and tragic character. I wished innumerable times that something could be done to save him from his fate. In the new opening, he is not given much to do except get wounded and then be dragged away.
No spider encounters, except you have to kill four. The rest are non-aggressive, and you can waltz past them.
Calder Cobb looms right away as a miscreant. But here, he just sort of leers and threatens like some old villain, but you don't get any sense of him as a real bad guy.
Cal Sprigley's farm is completely quiet.
The big boar...can't think of his name, gone.
They moved the Bilberries!!!! What?
Going into the bandits lair is simple, hardly any foes.
In the old version of the opener, by the time you did the Fall of Archet instance, you knew the characters there, and cared about them, and it was a dramatic event. It was also more challenging than this version.
I understand completely why starter areas get redone over and over, but, it's a shame in a game like this, which is like a living novel, to have story suffer.
I do not recall all of the ins and outs of Minstrel as a class, and will need to pay attention as she levels to what anthems and ballads etc do.
My Hobbit is safely in the Shire, and I am actually pleased to have a new beginning with the game. I actually really enjoyed playing, and I shall be back.
Two Elves to get through Ered Luin and I'm ready for anything.