Lord of the Rings Online

LotRO: Riders of Rohan release date is September 5, new trailer shows mounted combat

Tom Senior at

Would Gandalf unhorse to fight a goblin? No. He'd fling his beard over one shoulder and wang them with his staff from on high. In the Riders of Rohan expansion for free-to-play MMO Lord of the Rings Online, you'll no longer have to dismount like a peasant to do battle with your foes. Roaming Warg bands will dominate the eastern regions of Rohan, and you'll be able to pluck them off their saddles by riding right at them and activating one of a series of new combat skills from horseback. If you miss, you can bring your steed around for another go while your cooldowns recharge.

The teaser trailer above gives us a peek at what this will look like. How smooth it'll be in-game is another matter. It's hard to imagine how the organised cooldown combat of an MMO will translate to the fast, organic pace of a mounted fight. It'll certainly provide a good incentive to charge into the new lands and buy a Rohan warhorse, though. The expansion will also boost the level cap from 80 to 85 and give players the opportunity to aid the Rohirrim in the new story quests.

It's out on September 5. A new live action video delivers a whiff of the expansion's war-like ambience. Watch not-Borimir inspiring the troops in the trailer below.