Back to the Basics: Character Creation Part 2: Classes and Appearance Customization

Choosing A Class

So you have chosen your race, be it Man, Elf, Hobbit, or Dwarf, now comes the time to choose the main driving force behind your character. Classes are the most influential customization you can apply to your character. That is why it is good that Lotro has such a diverse class selection system, ranging from Warden to Loremaster and Burglar to Captian.

Class mainly determines what role your character will be playing, your playstyle, and the skill you will be using to combat the dark shadow of Mordor. Class also determines what weapons, armor, and other such items your character will be able to wear.

So You Think You Can Choose A Class?

The first thing to take into consideration when choosing a class is to determine what role you want your character to be playing. This basically means: What do I want to do? Simple right? Well, sort of. At the beginning, the game teaches you to play your class in a tutorial area of sorts (future Introduction Guide coming). As you level your character, your role becomes more complicated, as your skill list gets deeper and more in depth, and you are able to do more things.

But all that aside, choosing a class is basically choosing how you want to play the game. So let’s get into it.

Dramatis Personae


Difficulty: Advanced

Specialties: Debuffs, Fellowship Maneuvers.

Pros: Stealth skill, Easy to Solo, Moderate DPS

Cons: Low health, Medium Armor only, Advanced Tactics


Difficulty: Moderate

Specialties: Jack of All Trades

Pros: Healing Abilities, Pet Class, Easy to Solo

Cons: Sometimes spread too thin, Advanced Tactics, Easily by-passable in a grouping situation


Difficulty: Basic

Specialties: DPS, and AoE

Pros: High DPS, Easy to Play, Easy to Level

Cons: Not much range in Abilities, Can be Squishy


Difficulty: Basic

Specialties: Tanking

Pros: Easy to be kept alive, Easy to do your job

Cons: Slow to level, Power Management


Difficulty: Basic

Specialties: Ranged DPS

Pros: Ranged, Well-Rounded, Port Skills

Cons: Can be Squishy, Power Management (sometimes)


Difficulty: Advanced

Specialties: Crowd Control, Healing, Power Regen,

Pros: Many talented, Pet Class

Cons: Power Management, Advanced Tactics, Squishy


Difficulty: Moderate

Specialties: Healing

Pros: Great Healing, No Problem finding groups

Cons: Not many damaging skills, Hard to solo


Difficulty: Advanced

Specialties: DPS/Healing

Pros: Very Powerful, Many Talented

Cons: Hard to switch between roles, Hard class quests


Difficulty: Advanced

Specialties: Tanking

Pros: Well-Rounded, Very Powerful

Cons: Gambit System is hard to learn, Hard to find high-level groups

After reading the above, you should have a pretty good idea of what you want your character’s class to be. If you can’t decide between two of them, create two characters (A free account has two character slots per server). So you have successfully chosen your role(s) and are ready to hop into game!

Whoa! wait a sec, you don’t want a balding dude in underpants strolling across Middle Earth do you?

If you were wondering, the answer is no. But seriously, it is time to create your character. After choosing your class and race, you are ready to proceed to advanced appearance customization. To do so, click continue in the bottom right of the screen. Then you should be transported to a screen something like this.

Depending on your class and race, your screen will probably look different from mine, as mine is a Man Champion. You will see many different buttons on this screen, but they are pretty straightforward to use.

Customizing Your Character

To the far right, your details can be customized, such as you hair, face, and/or some combination of the two. To the left of the screen is the basic customizations, such as where your character is from specifically. Also, name suggestions and tips are below the region selector.

As the Race of  Man, you can choose to make your character originate from Bree-land, Dale-lands, Gondor, or Rohan. As an Elf, you can originate from Lindon, Lorien, Mirkwood, Rivendell, or Edhellond. As a Hobbit, you can be a Fallohide, Harfoot, or Stoor. And as a Dwarf, the nationalities are the Blue Mountains, Iron Hills, Lonely Mountain, Grey Mountains, and White Mountains.

Region of Origins do not affect your character in any way except for specializing the color of hair, eyes, and skin that you can choose for your character. If you are a Man who originates from Rohan, you do not start in a level 75-85 zone.

The rest of the character customization is purely cosmetic. There are many great guides on the different looks you can customize your character with that I will link to at the bottom of this post. The different races and classes all have different customization, so feel free to just play around with your looks.


 Barbers can change many of your character’s appearances in game, after the initial character creation, including hair style, facial hair, hair colour, facial details such as scars, wrinkles, and freckles. Barbers are not able to change facial structures like the shapes of noses or eyes. Barbers are located in Rivendell, Bree, Michel Delving, Thorin’s Hall, and Galtrev. Please note that it does cost money to rearrange your appearances.

What Do You Want?

Just remember that the character that you choose is what people are going to view you as. These people over the internet have no idea of what you actually look like, so choose something that you feel comfortable with. For example, many real-life males tend to choose female avatars (also called toons) for some wierd scientific reason, so feel free to choose whatever you want, just don’t hope to be a dwarf female.


Question to the reader

What made you choose the Class you did?

Ben, Middleearthinitative


About middleearthinitiative

I am a casual LOTRO player that is pretty new to the game. I am trying to help out with the low level content, and will try to respond to any comments/questions as soon as possible.
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4 Responses to Back to the Basics: Character Creation Part 2: Classes and Appearance Customization

  1. I think it’s important to note for new players that one con of Hunters is simply their massive popularity. There are so many it can be harder to find a spot in a group. They are also the easiest class to play, and I know many players who, by the time they hit level cap, are completely bored with their class.

    • I agree with you. Bree is literaly filled with hunters, and I always see in the chat “Hunter looking for group”. I think that this is a con, but it is combated with the fact that everyone needs a hunter friend to port them everywhere.

      Thanks for pointing that out!

      Ben, MiddleEarthIntitiative

  2. d2bob says:

    Hi Ben, nice post. I was new to MMOs so wanted a simple class to start. I chose a Hunter and feel that choice was a good learning class for me. The travel skills are really useful. However I agree with comments about the Hunters limitations. If you want an ‘easy’ class with more grouping opportunities a Guardian is a better bet. I am also leveling a Captain (heavy armour) and Loremaster (light armour), I enjoy the ‘pet’ classes.

    • I enjoy all of those classes as well, although I find Loremasters’ squishyness to be annoying many times.
      As for Captains, I think they are great for solo, due to their self heals and brother skills.

      Ben, MiddleEarthIntiative

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