Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Call to LOTRO players: Friendship France gathering on Sirannon [FR]

After the terrorist attacks on Paris, blogging about happy, irrelevant things in games just felt wrong. Twitter was full of shocked reactions, but also of hatred, racism and people who acted like nothing happened happily going on about games. I turned it off for the weekend.

Life is going on, but not for everyone.

I'm not French. I don't even have a special relationship with France. Sure, I've been on holiday in France a few times, been to Paris once (cycled right through it, didn't have time to see anything) and I may still vaguely remember some words from my lessons French in high school - but that's it. Maybe it's that it's only three hours by train to Paris from my home in Amsterdam, maybe I'm a hypocrite for not being quite as impacted by recent terrorist attacks in other parts of the world, but either way, I am shaken and at a loss for words.

Meanwhile, I'm far away in Sweden. A person like any other getting disheartened by the ignorance and hatred floating about in social media. But then I heard about the cutest thing: an international meeting of Lord of the Rings Online players gathering on Sirannon [FR] to show their support to French LOTRO players.

This is lore-master Ravanel. She is level 8. I rolled her yesterday on the French LOTRO server Sirannon and she just finished the introduction story. Upcoming Sunday, she'll take a swift horse to Bree to attend the Friendship France event outside the Prancing Pony.

I know it's just a silly game. But even if it's 'not real', there are real people sitting behind their keyboards, real French people who could really do with some comfort. If there's any chance I can provide some by just logging into an online game for an hour... well, who am I not to? I hope people will show up in great numbers.

What to do (non-Sirannon players):

  • Login to Lord of the Rings Online and create a character on the server Sirannon [FR]
  • Play through the introduction to get access to a stable master
  • Take a swift travel horse to Bree
  • Login on Sunday the 22nd of November at 3 pm EDT / 9 pm CET and visit the stage just outside the Prancing Pony, Bree
Remember, LOTRO is free-to-play; the event area is accessible to all players regardless of payment model.


  • /joinchannel Friendship to chat to other event visitors in English
  • Dye your outfit in the colours of the French flag (ask in friendship chat for free blue, white and red dyes)
  • Activate your "of [server name]" title to show where we've all come from
  • Spread the word! Let your friends know about the event on Twitter, Facebook, your kinship's website... you name it

If you want a chat, directions, help or simply group up for the event, feel free to /tell Ravanel and I'll gladly invite you to my group. Nobody needs to be alone this day. See you in Bree!

More on Friendship France


  1. I don't think it is necessary to be impacted by these terrorists attacks nor does it make any of us hypocritical to be shocked and horrified by these events. I am even more far from all these events by living in Brazil and not have ever set foot in Europe, much less France. But still I was shocked, horrified and sad too. And the only things that have been going through my mind are "Why can't all this hate just be left behind so we can just get along with each other?" and "When will all this end?".

    Rambling aside, I hope all the best for this event and those participating on it. May friendship be stronger and louder than any hate and violence!

    1. A question I've heard buzzing around a lot lately is "why do people only start to care if it's in Europe, and not in the Middle East?" I think everyone (okay, almost everyone... there's always some oddballs) acknowledges that these deeds are just as terrible regardless where they take place, but that's not how psychology works. I wonder if the people who ask these questions are really feeling differently themselves, if they have anti-Western feelings or are hyper-correct Europeans. Whatever it may be, I totally agree with you. These dreadful happenings, this increase in polarity makes me scared and sad.

      I usually refrain from politics on this blog, as you know, but this isn't (just) politics, it's about humanity. This in-game event was cute, positive and gave me hope. There's not so many people left playing LOTRO and I feel this event could have been better advertised than it was, but I hope many people will turn up either way. The fact that it was organized in LOTRO in the first place (and not in SWTOR for instance, which is much bigger at the time speaking) says something about its community. Oh, those days of old, when LOTRO was still new, exciting and maintained... *rose-tinted glasses* ;)

  2. I don't know if the mini-Reds have toons on this server (well, for the time being, as I heard something from them about no longer being able to create toons on European servers or something like that).

    That said, I'll pass it along.

    1. Hmm, I thought it was impossible to transfer between US and EU servers, but I didn't know anything about not being able to create new characters? I'm terribly behind on such things, though, but I hope that it is still possible. (Some of) the mini-Reds love music, though, right? This event should be right up their alley, because it starts with a concert. If they do happen to make it, do a /wave to me! :D

    2. Yeah, I think it's the transfer thing, but after the server trimming they won't be able to create new ones, or something like that.


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