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Everything posted by Talisman

  1. Greetings! I hope everyone is staying safe! Before looking ahead, I want to thank our players for traveling with us through Middle-earth in 2019. We ventured into the Anvil of Winterstith, explored historic tales in the Vales of Anduin, and braved Minas Morgul itself with our expansion. The Stout-axe Dwarves freed themselves from the servitude of dark masters, player Virtues saw changes, we updated the Hobbit Presents system, and we completed the Black Book of Mordor storyline. As we play through our recent 6-man content and our raid into Shelob’s lair, I want to talk about future events and releases we are excited to present to players. Now that Virtue changes are in place and the Minas Morgul expansion is behind us, we plan to update Legendary Items in 2020. We know players want changes to how these items advance, and to have more opportunity to improve their items in later content. We are also looking at more substantial changes for later in the year. It is important for us that the players feel that their progress on their Legendary Items carries forward into the new system, and we are discussing design changes with that in mind. Out first update in the late Spring unveils a key theme for 2020: war between the dwarves and Orcs. We will be debuting our new major story-line called "The Legacy of Durin and the Trials of the Dwarves". This story-line will continue throughout the year as we weave toward 2021 and visit the ancient dwarf stronghold of Gundabad. The Legacy of Durin and the Trials of the Dwarves story-line will be free to all players, and our regular updates will both supplement the main story and tell their own tales. Our late Spring update, called Mists of Wilderland, will take players to the Wells of Langflood, where they will join Durin's line to begin the march to retake dwarf lands. In addition, a small 12-person raid will be released in the fall. In the early summer we will see our first Challenge League, which is a new temporary server that allows players to fight each other for honor, with the defeated required to retreat from the battlefield, rally themselves, and move back into the world to continue the fight. The sons of Elrond, Elladan and Elrohir, have begun a discussion with perhaps too much pride, and are arguing about which of them would make the greatest leader and support the greatest heroes. Take up the banner of either Elladan or Elrohir and venture forth to complete Deeds and challenge heroes that align with your rival. Brave players can earn milestones for completing Deeds, and those characters will appear in a special Leader-board. Will you rush to honor your patron by completing Deeds, or will you spend your time challenging rivals? Also this summer we are inviting you to one of Middle-earth's most historic moments: The wedding of Aragorn and Arwen. Prestigious guests have traveled vast distances to bless the new king, and there is a need for people to support the celebration. Additionally, artisans are hard at work creating their finest goods and fashions for the wedding, and guests can expect to look their best for the event. In addition, we are unveiling a new seasonal festival event for Lord of the Rings Online which commemorates weddings and merriment throughout Middle-earth, featuring a unique festival questing area within Minas Tirith. In the fall we will see a new type of mega-update, the War of the Three Peaks, which will provide new content for characters of all levels. Durin's line begins war with the Orcs as they prepare to advance to Gundabad. This update continues the Legacy of Durin story-line, but also includes other end-game content. This update will also open up a new area on the front lines of the war that will allow any character regardless of level to come to Durin's aid. While open, players will complete missions, earn favor of both Durin's line and Dwarf artisans and smiths, and support the war effort. This year we will be adding a new premium housing area to the game in Rohan. Rohan Housing is divided into two new housing neighbourhoods, both located in West Rohan. Rohan Housing also brings with it some new features, such as Stable Hooks and Custom Lighting Hooks! This fall will also see a new Legendary server! We are looking forward to adding new challenges and gameplay experiences for this new server. In our current vision for this server, Sauron will play a more active role in punishing heroes who defy his will. At times during play, the Eye of Sauron will open, inspiring all the evil in the world to rally and rise to his dark challenge. These enemies will become far more dangerous during this time. However, when the Eye is open, your characters will rise to the challenge and deliver greatly increased damage in defiance of the Dark Lord. Beware when the Eye of Sauron is open! We intend to keep the current Legendary experience going in 2020 as well, and will continue to open up new content on those servers. Finally, we'll round out the year with an update to the Yuletide festival, with new quests, activities, and rewards. We're excited for the new year, and we appreciate you taking this journey with us. Sev~
  2. Ok...did the reply really happen 6 hours ago?
  3. Druidsfire also posted interviews with Dark Celtic (Bill Champagne) and Severlin.
  4. Anor and Ithil are LOTRO's progression servers that supposedly allow players to experience previous expansions as level cap content. The servers are open only to VIPs and lifers, and originally were loaded with the lvl 50 Shadows of Angmar content. SSG is supposed to release each xpac in order roughly every 4 months; Riders of Rohan has just been released. They are somewhat like the classic WOW servers, except that the content (loot boxes; scaled instances) and systems (trait trees; virtues;) mirrors the regular servers. They usually release some new cosmetics or titles along with the xpac.
  5. Actually, it would make a huge difference. One person who buys a $60 LP package a month drops $720 on the game a year. If only 2,000 people did this every month, SSG would have an income of $720,000 (in addition to the subscription income). I'm sure the number of people buying points monthly is somewhat higher.
  6. By Justin Olivetti -January 21, 2020 4:05 PM Following the big (but not unexpected) announcement that Daybreak is fracturing into a trio of studios underneath a publishing arm, one of the questions that has arisen is what might happen to the two MMORPGs that the company publishes for Standing Stone Games. Fans of Lord of the Rings Online and Dungeons and Dragons Online can pour a big glass of calm-down juice at this announcement, apparently. According to both SSG and Daybreak, both titles are unaffected by the company restructuring. DCUO’s new studio, Dimensional Ink, addressed this issue in its FAQ: “Standing Stone Games will remain the same and continue to develop and operate Dungeons & Dragons Online and The Lord of the Rings Online. Daybreak will continue to provide publishing support for the games. There will be no impact on LOTRO or DDO service. ” “We’ve been seeing the news as well,” said SSG Community Manager Jerry Snook on the LOTRO forums. “This announcement is expected to have no impact on us, how we work, or what we do.” https://massivelyop.com/2020/01/21/daybreak-says-its-studio-split-up-will-have-no-impact-on-standing-stone-lotro-or-ddo/
  7. 10K logins per day...how many of those are non-paying, either as F2P/Premium or Lifers? I get the impression that there are a significant number of lifers, and I'd guess that 75-80% are not paying a monthly subscription. If only 20% or the regular players are paying, the game is only making $30K a month, or $360K a year. I doubt that covers the salaries for the employees. Someone must be buying a hell of a lot of points to sustain the game. If you listen to LOTRO players (the successor to Casual Stroll to Mordor), at least one of the hosts valars pretty much every character she creates...so she's regularly throwing SSG money. I guess these are the people who are keeping the game afloat.
  8. The Tolkien Society announced that Christopher died today. He was 95. https://www.tolkiensociety.org/2020/01/christopher-tolkien-has-died/
  9. https://www.bostonglobe.com/business/2020/01/13/fantasy-game-maker-taking-big-rival-amazon/eRg12aODnJCG2vXFGGX3VL/story.html?fbclid=IwAR2tNou3AaChTIIJ39qGAE5C2E1APNpBO53KXaKPmpEv6qwq_hrYEBKJ83A Fantasy game maker is taking on a big rival: Amazon By Hiawatha Bray Amazon is now preparing to invade Middle Earth. And only a little-known Needham video game company stands in its way. Standing Stone Games is the maker of the fantasy video game “Lord of the Rings Online,” inspired by J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic tale of mythical adventure and designed to be played by thousands of people at a time. Such a game is known in the business as an MMO, or massive multiplayer online game. Standing Stone is facing its own battle for survival as Amazon.com spends as much as $1 billion on a TV series based on Tolkien’s work, and is developing its own “Lord of the Rings” MMO game. Amazon began working on the new game last summer, in cooperation with the Hong Kong game developer Leyou Technologies Holdings, though it hasn’t revealed when it will be released. Though nervous about Amazon’s looming competition, Standing Stone executives are a long way from panicking. “Are we worried and wary about having a competing game? Of course,” said executive producer Robert Ciccolini. “They are an excellent company that has a lot of marketing power.” Ciccolini even sees a way his company could benefit from Amazon’s investment, by generating enough new interest in Tolkien’s work to steer customers to his company’s product. “The Lord of the Rings series will reinvigorate everything Lord of the Rings,” he said. “Having this exposure to Tolkien is usually good for us.” In fact, Amazon may not be the fearsome giant in this fight, given the company’s spotty track record in game development. “I’m skeptical that Amazon is going to do anything right,” said Michael Pachter, a gaming analyst at Wedbush Securities in Los Angeles. Amazon Game Studios, founded in 2014, has yet to generate a major success. Indeed, just last June, the gaming unit announced substantial layoffs, as well as the cancellation of several games then under development. Amazon declined to comment on its plans for the game. Wanda Meloni, chief executive of the research firm M2 Insights, figures it’s not Standing Stone that needs to prove itself. “The pressure is squarely on Amazon to succeed,” she said. Still, it’s Amazon, a global giant with more money than Sauron, against Standing Stone, a low-profile independent game developer that can’t call for help from a rich corporate parent. The Lord of the Rings game, known to its players as LOTRO, and Standing Stone’s other online game, “Dungeons & Dragons Online,” were originally developed by Turbine, a game company founded in the mid-1990s. Turbine launched Lord of the Rings in 2006. As with other online games, such as the better-known “World of Warcraft,” players paid a monthly subscription fee. But in 2010, Rings switched to a “freemium” approach. Basic play is free but special tools and weapons that make the game more exciting can be purchased. In the same year, Turbine was acquired by Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, part of the giant Time Warner media company. The new owners poured millions into a game called “Infinite Crisis,” a massive online fighting game based on characters from another Time Warner media property, DC Comics, such as Superman and Batman. But that game, released in 2015, was a massive flop. The following year, Time Warner spun off Rings Online and Dungeons & Dragons Online into a new independent company, Standing Stone. Time Warner has since been acquired by AT&T and is now named WarnerMedia. Like most other MMO operators, Standing Stone won’t reveal how many people have signed up to play its game, but Ciccolini said that on a typical day they see about 10,000 players logged in at the same time. Not everybody comes to fight battles or attempt perilous quests. For some, Rings Online is a social hangout. Ciccolini said one player, a Tolkien expert, conducts seminars on the writer and his work. The software includes a feature to let gamers perform music for the entertainment of other players; sometimes several get together and hold in-game concerts. That social aspect may make it difficult for some faithful players to leave their friends behind and switch from LOTRO to the Amazon game. “I’d need to know more about it before I decide to try it,” said one player, Joris Benzidane, who works as a translator in La Rochelle, France. “However if I play it, it will be on top of LOTRO and certainly not instead of LOTRO.” For Josh Riggins, an operations manager in Tacoma, Wash., LOTRO has become a family affair. “My parents (in their 60s) and my kids (8 & 9) all play,” Riggins wrote in an e-mail. “The casual player (who plays for free anyway) might move to Amazon’s game, but that won’t bother the hard-core LOTRO players. Also, Tolkien fandom is such that many players will play both.”
  10. Has anyone requested a Yule Festival extension yet? Or demanded some kind of compensation for the "inconvenience" of the down time?
  11. Just a reminder: 2 rounds of "testing" (er, "previewing").
  12. I use Chrome, and have cleared cookies and cache, but it usually doesn't help - everything ends up getting marked as unread, and starts the cycle all over again. I have other browsers installed, but don't use them, and I don't think it's worthwhile to switch browsers just for one site.
  13. Not sure where else to post this, but I have a couple of issues with the site: 1) If I click on the Mark site read link, topics immediately get marked as read, but then the site refreshes and the topics are no longer marked as read (they reappear in bolded state). 2) Periodically, the site seems to refresh, and topics I marked as read return as unread. For example, today, the I had dream about LOTRO, SSG hates LotRO PvMP and its PvPers, Black Friday Sale (and New Item), and Such impudence... threads returned to their unread, bolded state, despite there being no new replies since the last time I visited the site last night.
  14. No - I didn't mean that there was a specific request for Osgiliath, but there were multiple requests for some kind of new PvP zone. I know that creeps often requested that Forochel be opened to PvP, for example.
  15. I'm only surprised that it didn't happen sooner. The reputation grind was the main way people earned LP to avoid paying for a subscription.
  16. Wait, no one asked for Osgiliath? I seem to remember a lot of requests for another PvP map. Osgiliath failed because it was so poorly designed and offered no real incentives.
  17. The task carry-alls are a bonus for every LP purchase. So, if you want one on Landy, buy points and log into a toon there; if you want one on Ark, buy more points and log into a toon there.
  18. SSG has a new item - the Task Item Carry-All. It comes in small (10 slots) and a medium (25 slots). Each slot can contain a stack of 2,000 task items. They are not available in the store (yet), but are a "bonus" for buying LOTRO Points. https://www.lotro.com/en/game/articles/lord-rings-online-black-friday-deals Lord of the Rings Online Black Friday Deals! Check out these deals, available now through Monday December 2nd, 2019: Introducing Double Bonus Points Plus! Get a special bonus item for each bundle you purchase, details below*: 500+200 points bundle: Small Task Item carry-all 1250+700 points bundle: Small Task Item carry-all 2200+1900 points bundle: Small Task Item carry-all 3750+5100 points bundle: Medium Task Item carry-all 6250+9500 points bundle: Medium Task Item carry-all 12500+21000 points bundle: Medium Task Item carry-all The small task item carry-all will carry 10 unique task items that allow for them to stack up to 2000. The medium task item carry-all will carry 25 task items that allow for them to stack up to 2000. These carry-alls are bound to account. If you purchased points from the character log in screen the bonus item will be delivered to your most recently logged in character. LOTRO Market Sales! 50% off select items in the LOTRO Market! Special LOTRO Store Discounts! 35% off ALL account wide mounts! 50% off Skill and Slayer Deed Boosts x25! 75% off Ironfold Crafting! Limited Release Items! New Item: Catch-up Boxes for your Legendary Items! In this box you will find the following: 100 Single-tier increase Catch-up Scrolls of Empowerment* 10 Five-tier increase Catch-up Scrolls of Empowerment 5 Ten-tier increase Catch-up Scrolls of Empowerment 25 Catch-up Star-lit Crystals* 10 Elegant Heritage Runes of Legend. These will grant item experience points.* *These items can be applied to any Legendary Item. For Non-Imbued Legendary Items You can use the Catch-up Star-Lit Crystals or Single-tier Catch-up Scrolls of Empowerment the same way you use Star-lit Crystals and Scrolls of Empowerment. Five-tier and Ten-tier Catch-up Scrolls cannot be used on Non-Imbued Legendary Items. For Imbued Legendary Items: The Catch-up Scrolls of Empowerment will function on any Legacy, other than your DPS Legacy, and will increment your Legacies just as other Scrolls of Empowerment do with one exception: You cannot use a Catch-up scroll on an item if it would bring the Legacy unlocks to within 10 Tiers of the current cap. For example, if a legacy is only 14 tiers away from the cap, you will not be able to use the five-tier or ten-tier increase Catch-up scrolls on that legacy. The Catch-up Star-lit Crystals will function on the main Legacy of your item, including DPS, Tactical Damage, and Tactical Healing Legacies. These Crystals increment your main Legacy just like Star-lit Crystals, with the exception that they cannot be applied to an item if it would bring the main Legacy unlocks to within 5 Tiers of the current cap. Bombur’s Bounty is Back! Get lots of Mithril Coins, Craft boosts, and more! 10 Key Bundle is Back! Limited Event! The Curator is back and available through December 2nd. The Curator also has a new housing item, the training dummy available for barter. *For players in the UK, the following points bundles values apply: 450+300 points bundle: Small Task Item carry-all 1350+1000 points bundle: Small Task Item carry-all 2250+2200 points bundle: Small Task Item carry-all 3600+5400 points bundle: Medium Task Item carry-all 7200+11600 points bundle: Medium Task Item carry-all 13500+24000 points bundle: Medium Task Item carry-all
  19. Someone overlaid the Dor Amarth and Mordor Besieged maps...
  20. Cordovan claims that he is part of a raiding kin on a personal account, and that his main character is a hunter (of course). It's hard for me to reconcile that statement with his general cluelessness about the game and its mechanics demonstrated on his stream - from simple things like using the map or quest tracker to not knowing where settlements are located, to more advanced things like skill rotations and or building stats. I can only imagine that his attempts to build out an LI are going to be laughable (although, I guess that won't happen since he got 2 FA imbued LIs when the Valared his character).
  21. The LOTRO Market uses Digital River to process your payment. If successful, it returns a code that you then have to enter into the in-game LOTRO store. This is by design, so that people can buy xpac codes to give away. In the past, the LOTRO team has given away xpacs as charity rewards or other events.
  22. Well, yeah...I did say they would introduce it. It's kind of a no-brainer. I'm just surprised it happened this quickly and was announced. Usually they slip these things into the store without fanfare.
  23. Today on his stream, Cord showed the notes for an upcoming release, and a Virtue XP accelerator is being added to the store. That Didn't Take Long...
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