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15th Anniversary of the Valar Guild

October 4, 2012

by Varda-(Valar)
page started Aug. 27, 2012 for planning and to be completed as news

AIM Marathon chat
Dragon Shots
    Dungeon Siege
Tolkien Site
    Games Site Mass Update
    State of Valar Gaming 2012


When is the 15th Anniversary?

    October 4, 2012. That's a Thursday.
    The theme this year is Dragons.

What happened worthy of an anniversary celebration?

    We were founded October 4, 1997  in our current form by Eru-(Valar) with the able assistance of Manwe-(Valar). Eru-(Valar) set the vision of a haven from the unpleasantness ruining the Diablo 1 community by bringing together like-minded folk who were literate, courteous and wanted to actually play the game. He set the goal of literacy and similar ideals and tastes by requiring that members must have completed reading the Lord of the Rings and liked it (It's hard to finish for people who don't like it!) Manwe-(Valar) set the ambience of friendly  light-heartedness, remembering that we are *playing a game* with other good folk.
    From there we went on as a co-operating, communicating unit into new games while working together to create a Tolkien Site as a service to all other fans of Tolkien's works. This business of creating is why we are called a "guild".
    As the group became larger and included more areas, organization passed to the Council of Mahanaxar. Some members helped the Council even as the Maiar and Free Peoples helped their brothers, the Valar, in the books.
    Just being around this long still including original members as well as new blood is pretty amazing for any online group.

Marathon Chat:

    Where? AIM room (reachable also by Trillian and Pidgin) Valar Guild Meetingplace
    When? Starting Sunday meeting Sept. 30, ending after the Sunday meeting Oct. 7, 2012.
    Who? All members of any kind and guild-friends.
    Doing what?  Guild members and guild-friends endeavor to keep our AIM meeting place continuously open or as near to it as possible from one Sunday meeting through the next to include the anniversary date. This is a way to participate in the anniversary nuttiness with other members even if you can't game or put up anything for the Tolkien Site, and is credit for participating in the guild that gives membership extension into the next year as well. This is also a nifty way to see members from all parts of our pan-game or Tolkien Site only, international guild. At times we will just chat or do trivia or quotes for fun.
    We are also collecting book quotes from the Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, and the Silmarillion for the others to vote on for inclusion in the rotating quote for the News page.
        Members: Arien, Ar-Pharazon, Eonwe, Fladrif, Gilraen, Glorfindel, Ioreth, Varda


    We have a thread where you can say plan, report, or say things like "Yay 15th!" and "howdy".

Dragon Shots:

    We're showing some of the screenshots of dragons in our games to go with the dragon-theme for this year's anniversary. Click the thumbnail for the enlarged picture.

    From World of WarCraft:
       Shots by Arien-(Valar) who plays Merrla and Justicia:
Malygos in WoW
  Merrla fighting Malygos in phase 3, while riding Kerastraza

Yulon, the Jade Serpent
Justicia meeting Yulon the Jade Serpent (the Guardian of the Jade Forest)  for the first time.

    Shot of Tarecgosa by Ar-Pharazon-(V):
"Screenshot against the moon from my legendary quest-event; me (Calaron) in dragonform in the front, the associated dragon pet just to my right, and what appears to be some sort of ghost image to the back of my character on the back of Tarecgosa, a blue dragon central to the questline, hovering high above Stormwind."


    From Lord of the Rings Online:

    Shots of Echrud by Tulkas-(Valar) who plays hunter Astald:

Echrud the fire drake
Echrud the Fire Drake landing on the house of the Old Woman of the Mountain, fought in the instance "Storm on Methedras".

Echrud the Fire Drake
Echrud the Fire Drake about to blast.

Echrud the Fire Drake
Echrud the Fire Drake, not a good house guest.

    Shots of Draigoch the Fire Dragon after death by Varda-(Valar), giving an idea of scale, and yes that's a really big heap of gold coins. Varda is the hobbit minstrel Tinwetari.:
Draigoch down
Draigoch: most of his front where he fell across a rock.

Draigoch is bearded.

That's a part of his wing on the left, sticking through the rock. He fell hard.
The people are still a fair distance in front of him, but this gives a clue of scale.


    From Dungeon Siege:

    Shots by Ar-Pharazon-(V):
Scorch breathing fire
Scorch breathing fire.

"Dungeon Siege: a couple of screenshots I managed to drag up from the depths of past documents of years gone by, which happened to be about my solo (I do have npc companions, but I tend to leave them behind and proceed only with my main, and therefore they're greyed out in the shots) character (not sure about his name, but since it appears to be my archer, I think I named him Legolas) fighting a large named dragon called Scorch. If I recall, it's the enemy with the biggest amount of health in the game, but rather easier than later bosses because of the damage it does and the fact that it can't follow you around. First screenshot has us locked in combat with the dragon breathing fire over me, and the second screenshot shows a dying Scorch."

Scorch dying
Scorch dying.


Tolkien Site Contributions:



          Ioreth by Ioreth-(V)
          Smaug by Varda-(Valar)


          The Fall of Smaug by Arien-(Valar)


          Athelas by Ioreth-(V)


    World of WarCraft:

       Deathwing must die. October 5, regular Friday run time: slay Deathwing. Take screenshots of the dragon for posting for the anniversary. Called off due to small sign-up.

       Made, won, and bought fireworks to shoot off at major cities in WoW. 7pm Eastern.
        Participants: Bilbo, Eonwe, Glorfindel, and Varda.
Gnomeregan 2012 Fireworks
Gnomeregan gate where we set off fireworks. Click to enlarge.
Left to right: Glorfindel, Varda, Eonwe, and Bilbo.

More pictures will be going up on the Games Site.

         The guild gained Ashen Verdict rep.
             Participants: Bilbo, Eonwe, Glorfindel, and Sauron (back from work).

    Lord of the Rings Online:

        The planned Draigoch run may be Oct. 6, Saturday, 1pm Eastern to go with the anniversary's dragon theme. Please sign up to let us know you can come on the forum at this thread. Take a screenshot of Draigoch for the anniversary! Called off due to small sign-up.
    Fireworks celebration!
    Who can come?: Members, friends, and family are welcome to join in.
    Time: Oct. 4, 2012 at 1pm Eastern and and at 8pm Eastern October 4th to accomodate different time zones, classes, and work schedules. You're welcome to come to both.
    What to wear: This is a good time to wear those fancy party clothes (cosmetic system) or show off fancy armor.
    Fireworks can be collected during festivals such as Summerfest. Shooting them is also a deed.
    Meet at the kin house to distribute fireworks (somebody is sure not to have any, so we'll fix that!). A hunter can drop us just outside the west gate so that we can slow ride our horses to the Prancing Pony choose a person (different each time) to shout "Happy 15th Anniversary, Valar Guild!", and shoot off fireworks. Then we can hop to other major towns: Michel Delving fast ride to Hobbiton; Thorin's and slow ride in a circle around Frerin's Court once before shooting fireworks; Celondim either at the docks there (or fast ride to Duillond if we get lucky and have lots of time); then Galtrev and Stangard with slow rides in town before the fireworks.
    Swift travel, hunter guides/ports and captain summons speed up travel between the large cites.
    For late members, join us at whichever town we're in or hop to the next one (or we may have a captain for summons). Just ask where.
    For folks who couldn't come at the scheduled times (or forgot, would we do that?), solo or grab kin and guild-friends at a time of day that works for you, collect fireworks from the kin house, and travel together to do the ka-boom!
    Participants: Varda
    Screenshots may be posted here or on the Forum.
    Screenshot: slow ride from West Gate to the Prancing Pony, fireworks

    Another suggestion (from Tulkas) is a ride from either the Shire or South Bree to Rivendell on another day, perhaps higher levels escorting lower levels for exploration and stables as well as fun. This was a success the last time we tried it and its time to do it again!
    We might also try a race from Bree's south gate to Rivendell's door of the Last Homely House using +68 horses only.

       We can try a costume contest with the participants only able to vote for others rather than themselves, in categories such as: look most like a member of the Fellowship, most dramatic, and silliest. Other suggestions are welcome.