In this series, I talk about various aspects of The Lord of the Rings Online. This series is meant for newcomers, but may also help veteran players find more to love about the game.
Welcome to the beginning of Year 2! To kick off the new year of entries, I thought it apropos to explain the strange-looking structures called Reflecting Pools in The Lord of the Rings Online. These objects allow players to revisit instances that they have already played through, assist others in their Fellowship, and earn barter tokens to trade in for rewards.
For the Harry Potter fans, think of it almost as a Middle-earth pensieve. You get to select an instance from the region the Reflecting Pool is in that you have already completed and play through it again. This allows you to refresh your memory of a storyline, earn barter tokens, help Fellowship members, and even complete quests for the Anniversary Event.
Back in the day, these Reflecting Pools were the only way players could find help from other players in the Epic Instances that aren't accessible through the Instance Finder. Fortunately for solo players everywhere, a mechanic called "Inspired Greatness" was introduced which grants a bonus to individuals who don't have a Fellowship to help them in Volumes I, II and III of the Epic.
A handful of the Reflecting Pools have an NPC next to them called Sages of Eriador. These NPCs award Marks of Triumph for certain instances and have barter rewards that can be exchanged with class traders.
For example, my Lore-master could rack up 30 Marks of Triumph and barter them with the Sage for a Sealed Writ of Helegrod. Once opened, the Writ inside can be exchanged with the Lore-master class trader in Rivendell for a piece of armor from the Helegrod set.
There are 38 Reflecting Pools (by my count) in the game at the time of writing this, from Thorin's Gate all the way to the Morgul Vale in one direction and the Wells of Langflood in another. You can toggle their visibility on any map to find their location in any given region.
That's really all there is to them! For a list of all available Reflecting Pools, you can visit the entry on the LOTRO wiki. The list doesn't tell you which instances are available at each location, but a quick visit will show you what's available to you from them. Happy reminiscing!