My son scored big points with me this weekend. The mailman dropped off the latest game from GameFly and it was Puzzle Quest for the Nintendo DS. Good boy.
If you haven't heard, Puzzle Quest is an addictive blend of RPG and puzzle genres. Just Google for "puzzle quest review" or "puzzle quest impression" and you'll find plenty of articles and commentary on the game. I'm playing a druid and having fun with his mix of direct damage, healing, and control spells. If a game appeals to ages 12 and 34, you have a good game. The only turn off is misclicking gems with the stylus. Frustrating to get penalized for a misclicked illegal moved only to have my enemy get a sweet four-gem combo.
This weekend after the kids were off to bed, I'd play Puzzle Quest for an hour or so. After that it was Lord of the Rings Online. Pluck is finishing up the last few quests in the Shire. Last night I was in the perfect PUG. Never thought I would put those to words in the same sentence. (Googling "perfect pug" fetches some odd results). I play a hunter, and I was joined with a guardian that knew how to tank and a minstrel that knew how to heal. We knocked out quite a few group quests. That was the best threesome since... well...
I also spent some time advancing Pluck's crafting skills. I took woodsman for him so he can make his own bows. Over the past week I've been collecting wood and hides and dropping them in the bank vault. Do you know how boring it is watching a progress bar repeat several hundred times? Luckily I have Puzzle Quest. So while Pluck processed a mountain of materials, I leveled my druid in Puzzle Quest.
Turbine lifted the crafting system from World of Warcraft, made some small improvements, and dropped it into LotRO. The only difference I see so far are mastery options and apprentice/journeyman/master levels. Nice but nothing to change the boring set it and forget it type of crafting.