Though I wanted to log in during the Ninth Anniversary celebration, I had trouble updating with Steam, and when it finally did update, I couldn't log into the game though Steam indicated it was running. None of the fixes I read about helped so, I found an unopened! copy of Shadows of Angmar on the archival game shelves here and was able to update and launch the game from that.
I wanted to use my Hunter character to move on through the world, but when I swam down the river just a little bit to find a new area, everything was ten levels over my head. That hurts.
I decided to drop back to my Loremaster in Angmar. She was my second favorite, and her survivability is good, making her fun to play. I've been re-learning her skills and can take mobs three levels over my head pretty easily, so off I go.
There is a dream like quality to this area of the game, with nighttime seeming to last longer than normal--maybe it is just the time of night that I'm playing. The music is an odd kind of science-fictiony-a monster-is creeping-up thing that adds to the atmosphere.
Quest lines are interesting, though I found it a bit silly to be sent to pick some peas in an area where I had already threaded my way through a maze of a city to gather supplies.
I noticed I had an animal companion I didn't recall from past play, a Bog Guardian. He is unexpectedly cute, sporting Cattails and some other growth on his fuzzy green head. Though his note says he excels at ranged damage, he is really tough and helps shorten fights immensely closeup. I was sorely disappointed the game would not let me name him Swamp Thing. Come on.
I was thinking of posts regarding Vanilla WOW and the commenters who say blah, blah, you're viewing the game as it was with Rose Colored Glasses, blah blah. How nice it is to be able to go back to an older game, and so far nothing is glaringly different than I recall. I did like this particular area of Malenhad, for some reason, on the original play through. Perhaps just because it was light and sunny all the time compared to the area before. I think I liked the turtles for some reason.
My completionist ways aren't happy with all of the Fellowship quests I'm bypassing. On the one hand, I respect that these have been left as they were, on the other hand, a weasily part of me wishes some solo version of them was available. It seems to me this could be done, just have the quest scale to a single player and the reward be less/different.
Speaking of things I don't recall, where did this guy come from, and who is expected to be able to take him on?