LOTRO Before the Shadow Mini-Expansion Details plus Maps & Cosmetics

The Lord of the Rings Online has a mini-expansion in the works, Before the Shadow. Here’s everything we know about the expansion so far. Note: There are SPOILERS in this article.

Before the Shadow Release Date

The expansion is scheduled to release on November 8, 2022.

Expansion Features

The following features will be included in the Before the Shadow expansion:

  • Two new regions, Swanfleet and Cardolan
  • New leveling experience for levels 1 to 32
  • Four new Book quests for new characters
  • A new 6-player dungeon instance for levels 20 to 140
  • New Skirmish for levels 20 to 140
  • New themed Mission wrapper quests and rewards for completing daily and weekly
  • New Delving difficulty system that will offer challenges and rewards for higher level characters.

Teaser Trailer

Watch the official announcement trailer for Before the Shadow.

The Story of Before the Shadow

The focus of this mini-expansion will be on content for levels 1 to 32 following Boromir as he travels north to Rivendell before the Fellowship of the Ring meeting, players will learn of the threat rising from Mordor and Saruman’s Uruks within the two new areas of Swanfleet and Cardolan.

New Zone: Cardolan

Cardolan is Sindarin meaning “red hill land”, this is an area of deep history in Middle-earth. Players will no doubt be excited to travel south along the Greenway into this new zone in LOTRO. Cardolan is situated south of Bree and the Lone-Lands and west of the Trollshaws. Some of the places of interest here are Turn Gorthad, Sedgemead, Herne, and Caranost.

Cardolan in LOTRO

New Zone: Swanfleet

Swanfleet is a marshy inland delta area located south of the Angle of Mithethiel and west of Eregion. The area is home of Caras Gelebren, Wadewater, and Stoorvales once home of the Stoor Hobbits who were nearly wiped out during the Great Plague.


Expansion Pack Items

We wandered across a few Twitter posts recently of what cosmetic items to go along with the expansion pack. These items are part of the Collector’s and Ultimate expansion packs. Cosmetic image credits to Gloredh @WanderingArda

Gloredh posted these images of new cosmetics for LOTRO from the test server.

Additionally, Critters_Lotro posted a screenshot of several items found on the test server and have now been verified as items to be bundled in the different expansion options.

Here is a quick list of some items to be included in the bundles, check the official website for the full list, they are:

  • Flowing Silver Stone of the Tortoise, WHOA nice pocket item upgrade for fans of the XP disabler!
  • Flowing Silver Stone, pocket item to boost wallet barter tokens up through Western Gondor (level 100).
  • Ultimate Carry-All selection box for the Ultimate Bundle.
  • Ultimate Virtue XP Supplies.
  • Weapon Aura of Elven Blessings.
  • Heron Cosmetic Pet
  • Loyal Turtle Cosmetic Pet
  • Elk of Flowing Silver
  • Valiant Steed of the DĂșnedain
  • Mount Dressage Emote (for your steed)
  • Elf Dance of Old Traditions (Elf dance)
  • Improved Expedition Supplies
  • Ultimate Expedition Supplies
Expansion Pack Items Image credit to @Critter_Lotro on Twitter

LOTRO Stream

There was a LOTRO Q&A Stream with Severlin on Friday, September 16, 2022 at 12:00 PM ET. If you missed out on the previous stream, check out our summary of the August Q&A.

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Exploring video games are one of my favored hobbies, and with a fondness for the MMORPG and Simulation genres, I set out on a quest to write guides and share my gaming adventures.

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