LotRO: No more Clown Shoes – Outfits Explained

When I recently ranted about the problems that mismatching armour would do to a fashion-conscious character, reader Longasc reminded me that Lord of the Rings Online actually had a great system to customize every toons’ appearance, Outfitting.
Of course, me being my usual slow-witted self, I needed some serious twitter coaching by the same Longasc to finally get it. And now I’m totally taken by the system.

When the game first introduces you to Outfits, you get a free cosmetic circlet with the gift pack every new adventurer obtains at the end of their Intro. And I tried that one out immediately, of course.

How does that work? Besides your normal character equipment screen, you also get currently two tabs for outfits, a series of duplicate slots that will accept cosmetic items – gear that is purely decorative in nature and has no stats.

After receiving my first gifted circlet, I promptly equipped it in one of those outfit tabs… and noticed that it would remain in my inventory. As bag space tends to be at a premium (isn’t it always), I promptly banked the thing, and dismissed the whole system as more or less useless.

Say it ain’t so.

And indeed, it isn’t. The system is way better than that.

How the cosmetic outfits transform a clown into a scholar

What I finally understood was that cosmetic items remain in your inventory because they act like templates: drag them onto your character’s outfit panel, and a copy gets created that dresses your toon accordingly. Then you can send the same cosmetic item to another of your toons and equip it. Which is nice. But it doesn’t stop there.

To really get the full grasp of what Turbine has done here, one needs to spend some TP and get at least one shared wardrobe expansion of the Lotro store. And BTW, they’re on sale this week, which makes it a good time to grab them if you got any Turbine Points to spare.

Shared Wardrobes come in 10 slot increments and are, as the name states, shared among all your characters on the same server. They work the same way as your character’s outfit panel, in the sense that you will copy an outfit into the wardrobe while the original remains in your inventory (and you could for instance resell those after you copied them to the wardrobe).

Screenshot of the LotRO wardrobeFrom there, you can again simply drag and drop a cosmetic item from wardrobe to character panel and create a new copy. Fair enough. But where the system starts to shine is when you add the various dyes available in the mix.

If you apply a dye to an outfit in your inventory, it takes on the new colour scheme while losing the previous one. Straightforward. However, if instead you apply the dye to an outfit in the shared wardrobe, it will get added to the selection of colour schemes for the same outfit.

From there, you simply select what colour version you want for an outfit and drag it into your character panel and voilà, you have a wardrobe with up to almost two dozen different colour choices for every single piece of outfit available (and every piece still only uses up one space – my wife’s dream come true if this was possible in Real Life).

Of course, Turbine also thought of the people who would apply dyes to the cosmetic item in your inventory instead of the wardrobe, and if you do that, dragging the outfit with the new colour onto the wardrobe adds the new colour to the existing schemes. What’s not to like?

How a hobbit farmer becomes a warden

As the picture comparison above shows, I’d rather have my little hobbit warden looking the part instead of a stocky shire farmerwoman who just fell off the haystack. Only remaining concern: I need to find cosmetic pants, shoulderpieces and gloves.

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10 Responses to LotRO: No more Clown Shoes – Outfits Explained

  1. Longasc (7 comments) says:

    Very nice!
    That players don’t understand the cosmetic slot system is nothing unusual, it is rather common. People have been seen entering Moria without a clue how the system works or ever making use of it. My first toon in LOTRO trial did not use it before level 20-30 either, and even then it was difficult:

    Because I simply had nothing fancy to wear. Quest rewards at early levels often look hideous, and dyes can be quite expensive as well.
    I did not find the general outfitters either. But they are in every major city, or in Othrikar, Trestlebridge and so on. Some of them sell really pretty stuff for little coin.

    Guess what, some players buy the cheap outfits and put them on auction for 100x more. You can bet that sooner or later someone will buy it…! The very rare hauberk you got from a NPC for 50 coppers…

    My suggestion is to check quest rewards for their cosmetic value if their stats are no improvement to your equipment. Low level gear from armor merchants or skirmish gear are also alternatives.

  2. Gwaendar (217 comments) says:

    Oh yes, I noticed that thing about outfits on AH. The freebie Circlet of men for 2g. The Threstelbridge Hauberk for 3g.

    Well, I suppose these have a great educational value. Buying them imparts a very important lesson in life: “A fool and his money are soon parted”. Ironically enough, I currently like the dwarven-made hauberk you get from Othrikar better than a store special I bought for 195TP…

    I also noticed that cosmetics were available as skirmish rewards, and it so happens that I have plenty spare marks I didn’t really know what to spend on :) Dyes is the sore point, those things sell for crazy amounts. Once the next patch removes the need for those crafting quests in higher level areas, I may start thinking about turning my farmer alt into a scholar just to make my own dyes.

  3. Carla Easley (1 comments) says:

    I love the new appearance of the characters. You’ve got skills :)

  4. steel castings (1 comments) says:

    Cool outfits,the 3G hauberk also made from the skills.

  5. aya (1 comments) says:

    You have a nice post,it was very excellent :)..I love the new appearance of the characters too.. So much nice and cool :) :D

  6. Mattress Columbus (1 comments) says:

    very nicely done, i like what turbine has done there, glad to see they took the hint from Anarchy online’s social tab, wondering when they’ll apply it to ddo though, i’m tired of rebuying a cosmetic mod for my armor each time i change armor

  7. Pingback: WoW Armor Customization « Tish Tosh Tesh

  8. Olga Wright (1 comments) says:

    Nice one! I like the outfit of the characters. Wish i could do the same thing too but im not that techie.i like the outfit of “from farmer to warden”.. really interesting.
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  9. Mo (1 comments) says:

    Beautiful 3D characters!

  10. Hajj (1 comments) says:

    You have a nice post,it was very excellent :) ..I love the new appearance of the characters too.. So much nice and cool :)