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Everything posted by Tarantula

  1. From the Bullroarer thread for Update 32, end January 2022: Raninia: I wanna push back on this idea that you can release a "Complete System" ever - there's no such thing, and you should be extremely skeptical of anyone who goes around saying they're going to launch a complete system. The reality is all development, but especially development on a live product, like LOTRO, is iterative. We're always learning from feedback and adjusting things, creating new things, etc. No live product is ever completed, and no new additions to it are ever "complete" in any sense of that term. Our specific goal here with releasing the Reward Track in Bullroarer is to gather feedback so we can better shape development. It wasn't that long ago that you and others were saying that we should be using the community more to solicit this exact feedback, and we've been doing it with Bullroarers for 32 for almost a month, and we have more Bullroarers to come. And even once it releases, we know there will be more feedback to take in and learn from for future iterations. LOTRO is never complete, and it never will be complete. There's always more cool stuff to add I will just comment on this one, as it this my job too to deliver working software. When you decide to refactor/reingeneer a working (no matter how badly) and full featured system, you have to replace it with another working and (at least almost) full featured system. Any failure to do so will result in a terrible backlash from your customers. Even if you deliver the first version of the new system without all the features of the previous one (which is ok, can happen), you should flesh out all the missing features in a reasonable amount of time, a month let's say, a couple sprints. The previous system: * was badly engineered (roughly summarizing the infamous leak post from palantir) * resulted in performance problems (again palantir) * was working from a player's point of view, had soe, crystals, runes, relics, all that is needed to build the weapon * the materials were available to every playstyle, from solo to hard core raiding The new system: * has been in place since october, so almost four months * has still not replaced the old system * has no clear in game tutorial, no in depth explanation on the official web site, players must look for non official sources to understand how it works (not just how to maximize the functionalities in the current meta) * has RNG placed all around to increase grinding (citing alts is a poor excuse given how much alt-unfriendly the game has become) * materials are no more available to all play styles, i.e. gold traceries available as RNG only from T2+ instances, raids (yes I know there are a couple of landscape drops) * has still no reward track on live, the RT on BR is well let's try to be polite here, is unfinished and very very stingy This is your problem. A fully working, grindy system was replaced with an unfinished system, and even more grindy (if one wants to get teal traceries at least). It doesnt matter if it's better engineered from a dev's point of view, you have to sell it to customers, not to engineers who can appreciate the better execution. Let's repeat this: YOU have to sell it, it's not your customers that have to buy it. YOU have to sell it to customers, not the opposite. Even if many of your customers are LOTR (not LOTRo) addicts who keep playing only because this is the only MMORPG about LOTR and they are absolutely scared of the game shutdown, so they keep fuel money in. A final note, agile is about delivering working software, it's the only true aim of the metodology, check the agile manifesto. It's about delivering working software in an iterative fashion, working pieces that blend one after one in a whole functioning piece of software, it's about collecting feedback from your customers and changing plans according to feedback. Again, working pieces, not beta software, not ever unfinished systems, not bug plagued products (gundabad at release, took a month to fix the major bugs, not even most of the minors). It's about learning from feedback, not ignoring it as you do most of the times. I want to say that I love the enthusiasm you provided here but, as it currently sits, there are plenty of older cool stuff that needs to be worked on before new cool stuff should be added. For example, the allegiance (Mordor and Gundabad) UI, and now this horrendous reward track UI, both should be vertical. The LI system has hardly changed at all since its release 3-4 months ago. Past grinds are too long for what they are worth (Fangorn dailies and reputation, Herbalist dailies, MT, Felegoth, Dale and Erebor reputations, etc) I get they were once endgame grind at a point in time but nowadays they just are too long to be considered going back to engage with. I can create a lengthy list but I will leave it to those examples. It is very interesting, that someone from SSG is writing that. Your posting is very interesting also, because you are writing about software development, and you are totally right with what you wrote here. Unfortunately, we didn't see much from SSG in the past, in terms of software development skills on the scale, you are talking about here. Therefore, I am very interested to know which one of the SDLC* are you using resp. which one are you talking about here regarding SSG. Waterfall, Feature-Driven, Agile, Scrum, EP, Lean, Spiral, Rapid, DSM, else? Please excuse me that I ask so, but all the software development models include some basic principles and tools to work with them. Things like using a version management software, to avoid things that happened to SSG multiple times in the past, as to fix a bug in one patch and to re-introduce it in the next patch. Simple things like an issue or task board / tracking software. Just to name one example: the Name of the instances in Minas Morgul: first released on the German client with English names, then fixed the issue in a patch, and then 3 patches later the names were changed back to English. I am thinking it is very nice, that you are talking about software development, but if you do so, please consider that we see each time a patch is coming out from SSG how the software development process is working at SSG. ad *) software development life cycle This is true, we have asked Turbine and then SSG for years to listen to community feedback. You are now beginning with that and I really appreciate your effort to come here read the forum and answer to issues and question. Even EG7 CEO Ji Ham admit that LOTRO "have been underinvested under Daybreaks ownership alone" (fun fact: he was the CEO of Daybreak for the last 6 years), so we know that there are more issues with LOTRO as just some software development problems. Just ... well, there is no time to rest on the laurels. You are in a very unfortunate position, as many things that have been ignored for years, are now escalating. The only thing what could help is to listen more than ever to the customers' feedback. For example, one of the most shared feedback about the legendary reward track here is: removing the RNG from it. It is now up to you to prove your words. Hold it right there, Satan ! I'm usually on board with what you write, but this had me fall off my chair. It's quite the opposite, as far as endgame goes lvl 85 was the worst. Makes one wonder if you were there at the time ! - Remember farming t1/t2 instances for abysmal chances of getting gold gear ? Ask any champion that never managed to get his Malledhrim boots (+16% critical multiplier) what he thinks about it. Remember, there was no other way than RNG to get those. - Remember the farm trains to drop Horse-Lords recipes off of random mobs ? - Remember it was so horrendous and led to so many raiders quitting the game that French kins got world first and second of Flight to the Lonely Mountain ? Lvl 85 was the epitome of unhealthy abysmal RNG-driven bullc**p. I agree that current iteration on how to get gold traceries is terrible. If you want my take on it, which likely none does, the current RNG path should contribute to a non-RNG path. Say that you drop a gold (respectively teal) tracery that is useless to you, then disenchanting it should give you (on top of the Ancient Scripts) a token. When you have 3 tokens, you can trade those for a Cracked (resp. Shattered) tracery.
  2. Tomorrow the game will see some maintenance and 'an updated LOTRO.com will be launched'. Quite interesting that we get that update now, and I have no idea whether old forum content will survive. So here are, for posterity's sake, a few more highlights from our much beloved developer and some of the responses he received. I am making a second thread about another discussion with some priceless discussion beside this one, because it becomes way too much when a second post in this thread would be merged with the first post. Bear with me. This is from the 'Comments on the new reward track' thread. Sentences in italics are what Raninia is responding to: Raninia: Hey folks, thanks for the comments, gonna try and answer as much as I can. 1. Please stop using Horizontal UI's - Make the reward track UI vertical - Please! Sorry, we won't be able to fundamentally change the UI at this time. We're going to continue to iterate on the current version, as there's a lot of additional UX we want to add to make it more pleasant of an experience. 2. The ability to apply multiple runes at once is an ABSOLUTE MUST. Clicking on heritage runes for hours on end to apply all the ones you've got is just going to lead to RSI. This is something we addressed in the Bullroarer notes, but to reiterate, yes. 3. There are no values associated with the purple scroll bars i.e. you should be able to hover over them and see how many points you have and/or how many you need to finish that level/award. This is intentional. We'll see how this plays out in the first season, and decide on the future from there. 4. Traceries awarded should be via a tracery selection box and not randomly assigned My understanding is that this is intentional. The Reward Track is a supplemental system, not intended to be the main way you progress your Legendary Items. If you get drops that aren't useful for a particular character, many will be useful for an alt, and any that aren't can always be turned into Ancient Script. BTW Everybody - Be Warned - If you double click on a box containing Ancient Scripts and you are cap then you just LOSE the lot. There is no warning that you are at cap or a mechanism to stop you opening the box - Perhaps there should be one of these. That's a good thought, we'll think about that. Also BTW - Which developer thought it was a good idea to change the sorting of heritage runes in our vaults. They used to be sorted on rune value so that if you wanted a low value rune you went to the left hand end of the line and if you wanted a high level rune you went to the right hand end of the line. I'm not entirely sure what they are sorted on now (perhaps name?) but they are totally jumbled up and you can't find the one you want without hovering over each and every one you've got. I'm not sure if anything has changed, but if so, it sounds like it may be a bug. Please go ahead and file one so we can investigate. Questions: #1 does your progress get erased when they start a new season if you dont finish the season you were on? Yes, as there will be new rewards and a new track, any rewards you don't earn or claim in one season won't be available for you to earn or claim in the next. This doesn't mean that rewards won't be repeated - we expect Traceries, Tokens, and Ancient Script to be pretty consistent in every season. Even new unique rewards may reappear in future tracks after their initial appearance, once we begin to add them. #2 Do we really have to have so many different heritage runes? There's a 320,000 and a 335,000 for example. The number of different ones could probably be cut in half with no ill effects. I know it takes up bag space which is monetized, but I literaly cant buy anymore space. For whatever reason, I have single Tomes of defence taking up 5 different spaces in my shared storage and I cant even sell them in the AH. It makes me question the "free" hobbit gifts and code of the week. I don't think we need to in the future. We'll be removing the heritage rune grants from Gundabad quests with this update, and we'll be thinking about more broadly reducing the number of runes and their correlated drops throughout the game, but there's a lot of sources of them in almost fourteen years, so it'll take some time to find all of the ones we want to change. ==== Here are a few responses:
  3. Of course attitude like this is going to rub off. It's meant to silence, not promote improved interactions with the devs.
  4. Well, then I am one too. I had said I would not return and yet I did just that, after a hiatus of over 3 years. Why? Because of the landscape, stuff to catch up on, some new areas to explore, and plain boredom. It's a game, it provides me with diversion when I play it my way, with beauty (despite the graphics), and when I play with my way too many alts across way too many accounts, and all their houses, kins, and aimless crafting, playing the AH, creating more kins, running a festival, and so forth. Even the amount of gold from daily opening lootboxes adds up. Because I only do a bit of grinding when I feel like it (= want something) I avoid burn out from running repetitive content. I can't be bothered with gearing or my LIs. So I am an idiot, and my only saving grace is that I am not a spending idiot. My thermometer for whether I continue to play is this: am I having fun? It leads to nowhere because there is no future for this game, yet I still want to spend time (hey, I am spending something) on being in Middle Earth. That being said, of course SSG are idiots. Oleg is digging a deeper hole today than he was yesterday and he is taken to task and slowly pushed over a cliff. Reading all that for free is fun too. Let it burn! There is beauty in trainwrecks too. Will copy/paste some more, because there are some real nice responses. For now though I am singing 'Diggy, diggy hole, diggy, diggy hole' It's a good day. Apparently the newest shards from crafting no longer drop from nodes... you can buy them in the store easily though... It's nice to see many posters express their discontent with all these different in game changes. Yay for a revolution: people are done with the grind. And here is MassivelyOP: https://massivelyop.com/2022/01/13/lord-of-the-rings-online-defends-controversial-pay-to-win-currency-changes-as-the-forum-explodes/ Lotro thread now at 20 pages.
  5. when you plan to take these Embers away. I earned at level cap and at tier caps 1/2/3/4 & yes T5. Took days/weeks/months without rewards as well as having completed a few of them. The Embers in my wallet should be mine to keep and save as i see fit and when i am ready to make a selection to use as 'EMBERS EARNED'. The value is now 1/10 of the original and you.re worried it is not what i want ? This is Wrong.
  6. Well, he sure is involved and has pushed the new train wreck, revealed this week! And what a new mess it is! Well said. He is Producer... yeah... Producer of money. Not Producer of a game. Well, they could all quit. They don't have to take it up the rear. But apparently they do. Maybe that comes with some discomfort, doubt. Just like the playerbase has been groomed to accept the ambivalence of continued monetization towards p2w. The thought of this debacle symbolizing the end of Lotro crossed my mind this morning. We still have the books. Shame, the Moors. With regard to that new issue around embers/motes/figments: no fanboys in that thread at the moment. Someone clearly pointed out what started your post here with: It's been a pleasure reading your posts for many many years now. Your OF sig points to a very good reality. Keep up the good fight and take good care of yourself and the ones you love. You will be missed.
  7. Good post. New concept: being paywalled in game...
  8. One would almost think that all this doesn't matter? Players have spent their money on the expansion, on MC, on sales over December, on Rohan housing, on housing writs now for Erebor coming soon, and so forth. That was what this was about, right? What is those players' problem? Do they actually expect to play a game and have fun? The nerve... Let them eat cake.
  9. Players/posters are shredding his words to pieces and are having none of his intent. I will quote a few responses but it's much better to read them on the OF. That would be far too easy and make too much sense. Seriously SSG...it's like watching a train wreck over, and over, and over again. Complaining that the ember barterer is a better source of gear than RNG drops seems a little bit disingenuous. You guys design the RNG, you guys design the ember barterer. If RNG drops are supposed to be superior to the barterer, how about you have instances drop selection boxes rather than random pieces? The reason embers are the fastest way to the gear we want is because instance drops are often useless, while the ember barterer lets us choose the piece we want. Seeing the removal of selection boxes from the Storvagun quest leads me to believe you are not interested in this option, for reasons one can only speculate on. Giving the player a bigger cap [on figments] will make it a bit easier for us to adjust pricing, but we're not planning to double the cap and then double all the costs, there's no value in doing so. Sure there's value in that. Increased figment cost + reduced figment supply = lootbox sales. I'm not saying you WILL increase the cost of existing items... I'm pretty confident you won't. But let's not claim you wouldn't profit by doing so. Regardless of our mutual opinions, I'm glad to see you putting on your asbestos suit and wading into the fire to communicate with us. Thanks for the math. I couldn't be bothered to work it out, because we all know how it is going to turn out. And as has already been said, they know it, we know they know it, and they know that we know they know it. I don't believe all this stuff about it not being about key sales. Every single excuse they've given for making the change - still exists as long as a player can reach into the store and buy their way around doing the content. That's the bottom line. If its about the integrity of game content, then go for it, and nerf away - but all avenues, including the buy out. I'm confident enough that they will never go that route to say it in here. It will only ever be in game earning that is stifled, the pay-go-round will always keep on turning. They are fine with allowing the integrity of content slip for a price. If you want players to play the content then remove the non-content. Remove the lootboxes and make the game itself fun and rewarding. Stop adding roadblocks and grinds that are only intended to increase store sales. Dares ya. I started a new character in April/May 2020 with the aim of completing everything possible for a solo player in each zone before moving on. The first 75/85 levels were really enjoyable, then I hit the end game grinds for each zone from Wildermore onwards and as I'm just entering Mordor it is getting worse and worse with each zone. I've just spent 3/4 weeks in North Ithilien and the Wastes and what a pita the end game grinds were there. The zones themselves were fantastic and I really enjoyed questing through them but I never want to do them again. If I compare them to pre moria zones, yes there might be the odd slayer deed that is a slog but on the whole the zones are fun and I would go back and do everything again. I can't say the same for the newer content. It's clear to my eyes that for the first half of the game the focus is on playing but for the second half the focus is on paying. I'd like to see more of the former again please and this change does not appear to be that. I hope I'm wrong. Agree. Hey, here's the increase in embers cap you have all asked for!! The more you use it the more you will be penalized for using it makes it the worse. And under capitalism a company can only make a profit if they create a quality product that satisfies customers, that's why it works. And it's why LOTRO will strangle itself if it keeps going down this road.
  10. Yesterday, Cordovan posted this announcement: https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?&postid=8118189#post8118189 Soon after players started to respond in this thread, which has since then exploded: https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?692005-Changes-to-Motes-Ember-Figments Keep reading in next post (upon posting second post the forum magician merged them into one post): This afternoon dear old Oleg/Raninia attempted to temper the waters: post 272 here: https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?692005-Changes-to-Motes-Ember-Figments/page11 Except this greatly backfired on him. Keep reading. You may wonder why I have quoted so many posts. Well, I don't trust this thread to stay on the forums for a long time. So I am saving some here.
  11. He has been with Lotro since April. I don't think that he has a say about the monetization, that comes from higher up. If (and I think they were) already working on the new LI system before April then why the hell were they not able to finish a complete new LI system in October? Or is the implementation exactly WAI, which I think it is and are the players again strung along. We know that the people working on the new LI system have been deeply divided between allowing the appraisals and transforming former LI components into AS vs. implementing the system without appraisals etc. = leaving people to fend for themselves without a stash of resources. More and more dirty details about this system are surfacing on the forums. For example: someone who leveled to 140 with one set of new LIs and now wants to create a second LI set is not able to add level 121 legacies and enhancement runes to that new set, even though they still function on his first set. Surprise: from tomorrow's patch notes: Legendary Items can now increase to item level 470. If your character has reached level 140, speak to a Forge Master and Reforge your Legendary Items to access the new item levels. The question is whether it is smart for players to reforge at 140 only to be able to enhance traceries. Reforge was supposed to happen at 141 but that is years away. What else happens with that reforge? Does anything become disabled that you don't want disabled yet? Forger beware! This site was sailing west and then the skipper took us back east again. We are now on Discord too though. Exactly. I used to play a game that had a store, 'for convenience only'. I now play in a store with graphics. Huge difference.
  12. Soooo...... someone did some digging and posted a link to this producer's LinkedIn account in a thread on the OF: https://www.linkedin.com/in/oleg-brodskiy where we can read: Ability to think critically and analyze articulately in any medium Detail-oriented team player with great inter-personal dialogue and organizational skills I wonder what went wrong with his critical thinking and articulate analyzation in any medium, and team player with great inter-personal dialogue and organizational skills when he wrote that above post. And those skills apparently do not come into play when communicating with the player base? How very telling. And, it gets better: Barely 3 years ago, in September 2018, he posted this: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/5-ways-gain-your-teams-trust-scrum-master-oleg-brodskiy?trk=public_profile_article_view 5 Ways to Gain Your Team’s Trust as a Scrum Master Trust is the grease that keeps a team running smoothly. One of the most effective and low-cost ways to improve the delivery, performance, and morale is to gain the team’s trust. As a Scrum Master, it’s your responsibility to build trust with your team. A team that trusts their Scrum Master has an advantage over others. Broadly speaking, teams perform better when they feel they’re in good hands. Scrum Masters can seem like outsiders, as you tend to interact with the team, not with their work. The dynamic is exacerbated during Agile transformations: Scrum Masters who are brought in to work with a team that is used to a waterfall approach can struggle to gain the team’s trust. How intriguing!! Online games need the trust of their playerbase as well! Let's keep reading, maybe we find the reason why he wrote his post on the OF in the way he did. What are his 5 ways to gain trust? 1. Ask questions and remember the answers. 2. Take the blame. 3. Be honest and transparent. 4. Let the team lead. 5. Trust the team. Here’s the deal: if you don’t trust the team, they won’t trust you. There are no two ways around it. People can sense doubt. When you think what they’re saying or doing is untrustworthy, your team will know, and they will project that mistrust back on you. What can you do? Easy. Trust your team. Not only when you know absolutely, for-sure, 100%, that they’re trustworthy. Trust them as soon as they’re assembled, and then trust them more as you understand them! Trusting doesn’t mean ignoring or glossing over mistakes; it means you trust them to do the right thing, and to fix it when they slip up. Trust means holding each other accountable, being honest, being on their side, genuinely caring, and helping them to be better. A Scrum Master who practices asking questions and remembering the answers, taking the blame, being honest and transparent, letting the team lead, and trusting the team will enjoy higher productivity, less friction, and better quality outcomes. All of this apparently doesn't matter when dealing with the player base. However, the player base, through the forums, has been telling this company and its predecessor that it needs exactly these things for years: 1. Consult with representatives of your playerbase about positives and negatives of proposed changes and take those into account when you make your decisions. We do not see this at all with this company. 2. Take the blame when you mess up the game. 3. Be honest and transparent when you communicate with your playerbase. When this honesty and transparency are lacking, not only do players know this, they will call you out on it, and when you don't fix both your communication issues and that what you don't want to tell them, you will indeed, over time, establish bad faith. 4. Let the playerbase lead. Don't change the game to lead them to the store and then tell them 'but you are responsible for your choices.' You are playing a psychological game, and have been since the store was introduced. That you have whales literally buying into this is not an excuse when, over the years, you also have alienated a large group of dedicated LotrO players by greatly disappointing them when you didn't live up to the standards expressed in this post. The only thing that matters to you and that guides your decisions is making money while dishonouring the good points made in above post. And then you dare blame us for not trusting you, for not having good faith and for calling you out? These positions are irreconcilable! 5. Trust your playerbase. If you don't trust them, they know. Be honest with yourself when you enterain business decisions and rely on consistent posters on the forums to let you know what they are concerned about, what they do and don't like and why. We know that you cater to the whales. We know that you disregard the casual players. We know that you value money over all. It is true what many have already written many times: eventually this approach will fail, which is the last thing they want you to do because many, many players love and loved this world. But it seems that that is inconsequential to you. Why not make a fun game! A game that invites us all in, casuals, raiders, landscapers, modest spenders, whales. It is possible to do this without going as far as you are going right now, with insane grinds and disabling traceries, both of which disrespect the players' invested time. No one begrudges you that you want to make money. Do it in such a way that your customers' gaming experience and satisfaction are as important to you as the expectations of your shareholders.
  13. The further monetization of LotrO is going full steam ahead and this now will include that your LI stats only have a life span of 20 levels, after which they instantly disable. New LI's were introduced early in October but the second part, the Reward Track, will not come out until at least January 2022. Because, as usual, communication has been lacking (and that never bodes well for LotrO), many players are not aware of the full implications of their LI stats being disabled. Some have taken their concerns to the OF and there is, finally, a response from the producer. And what a response it is! Let me comment 'between the lines'. https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?691109-Please-SSG-remove-the-disabling-in-traceries/page3 Honestly, on my end, it's mostly cause I've been super busy (which is why I'm posting on a rare weekend). But yes, I think the Legendary Item Reward Track will change the player experience. Effective communcation with the player base has never been a strong suit of this company. This continues to be a shame. Many players have picked up on 'silence from the producing side' often meaning 'nothing good'. But you don't know that, being brand new to this game. Or do you? Of course you do. This is a corporate thing, isn't it? Seriously, a gaming company where communicating with the player base is not high on the priority list - how is that working out? Especially when the producer introduces a serious and far-reaching revamp of a weapon system. It must be working out, right? Because the only thing you look at behind the scenes is the $$ that people are spending. But your second sentence is more interesting. Why? Because it says nothing. Every change in a game changes the player experience. The big question is: does the player experience that change in a positive way or in a negative way? And you avoid addressing this question, because, drumm roll, this is not about player experience, this is about people spending money in game. This is no surprise. If I am parking all my characters at the moment, because of too much unclarity about the effect of the changes, and if I am not alone in that, then how is that good for your business? Instead of adding tons of fun contents, this game has been on the punitive route! And we now reach the point where the game is screaming 'how dare you try to bypass the store and want a playable and fun game!' Yup, blame the players! I answered this in your other thread, but no, no connection to Hobbit Presents. Be weird if it worked like Hobbit Presents, especially after I said we don't like how Hobbit Presents works atm. I don't think it was a connection to Hobbit Presents but asking 'will it work similar to?'. Maybe posting on a Sunday is not a good idea, when I look at how your second sentence is perceived by posters, including me. To answer your second question first: Our goal is for reforges to give players enough stats to make the landscape playable, but that doesn't mean we don't want to give players more tools. I'm sort of confused by this question tbh. The path of logic here seems to just assume bad faith on our part? See my first comment in this post, above. 'To just assume'? No, my points of view are based on over 10 years of experience with the direction that this game has taken. More tools in LotrO has often meant one thing: avoid the grind, go to the store. It was pointed out on these forums after the first part of the LI revamp was revealed, and this is even repeated today: 'the UI is so cluttered with MC prompters that the UI can hardly be seen'. Apparently there are 25 MC prompts for 11 traceries!! And you want us to believe that this is not about the store interfering with gameplay? You want us to accept that in good faith? We can't, because we see the overemphasis of monetization right in front of our eyes. There is tons of bad faith because of the store dictating in game changes over the past decade. As for your first question: Well, if there was something I could say that would prevent all players from talking about something and being upset about it, you bet I would In fact, imagine that I just did!.. Unfortunately, that's totally impossible, as this hopefully demonstrates: Maybe, just maybe, start thinking like this: if 'all players' (and you know that it is better to write 'many players') are talking about something, then maybe the person who is sending the message is either not communicating clearly or not communicating the whole story. In this case, that person would be you. Over time we have learned with this game that it is really: 'look at what appears in game' and not 'listen to the beautiful promises you are given prior to'. But the worst of this part is your tone. Unacceptable, especially towards customers who care enough about your product to continue letting you know you are on the wrong track with this. There's a lot of goal post moving here, there's a lot of "Well what if sometime somewhere somehow things don't work out correctly?" I'm being slightly facetious here, but hopefully - if you can take me with some good faith - you'll understand my point. Facetiousness is not a good thing when wanting to come across as assuring. You want to connect 'being slightly facetious here' to 'take me with some good faith'? Seriously? Seeing is believing! And your post is part of that!! Can't you see that? As long as the game is ruled by the store players can't have anything but bad faith. It's ok, I get it. Fear's a helluva drug. But not all the concerns or requests players have or make are made equal. Fear eh... There are no fearful posters here. There are posters who are putting 1, 2, and 3 together and draw conclusions. They are vocal about that on the forums and elsewhere. They already have halted their progress. They are watching and waiting. And not spending. All the way through Yule, through the sales, through the Boxing Day offers, well into January. And all that time you leave them hanging. If you seriously would think that players/posters are fearful, wouldn't you want to reveal, with images, in detail, this Reward Track? Finally, 7 weeks after we heard that it wasn't ready and just a few days after hearing that it will not be ready for another month (if not longer). I get the strong impression that you are test driving this new LI system. Your data are going to tell you how and where to tweak the Reward track, the raids, the landscape. Not data with regard to player satisfaction or a 'fun scale', no: your financial data. To briefly address the main topic here: No, we're not planning to change our minds on disabling traceries. They will continue to be disabled when they say they will. I understand the concerns here, but they're based off hypothetical scenarios and flawed anecdotals. We're continuing to keep an eye on this, and appreciate your feedback, but please remember that the forums are a bubble within the community, and aren't representative of the wider community. I understand that many of you are probably dissatisfied with that answer, however, based on the data we have so far, we're comfortable with the decision we've made. I get there's still a lot of confusion on when the disabling happens, and we hope that as folks spend more time with the system, they'll better understand it. If you use 'but' in a sentence, everything you say or write prior to 'but' is negated by that 'but'. You know that right? And then you give two reasons why those concerns are false: hypothetical scenarios and flawed anecdotals. But you forget that we, long term players, have experience with reality in this game: broken promises, lies, omissions, corporate speak, and player predictions that very often turned out to be correct. Don't blame us for expecting SSG will live up to its reputation. Your company (and its predecessors) have brought this on itself. You know what I get from the last part of this section of your post? That the revamp of the LI system is doing, behind the scenes, what is is supposed to be doing, from a business perspective: it brings in big money. That everything we see is WAI. That the Reward Track is on hold on purpose, to see how players are responding to the new LIs, how they are changing their game play, and especially: whether they are using the MC buttons. 'We are going to keep an eye on this'? Well, we know what that means as well. Nothing. Yup, I have no faith. The difference between the 'forum bubble' and 'the wider community' is spending habits within the game. That's the only data you are looking at and you admit being comfortable with your decisions. That says more than enough. It's very telling that you mention disabling because at this point there is no disabling of traceries at endgame yet. That disabling comes at the change from level 140 to 141. By then many people will have spent their stash of appraisal items and they will be largely dependent on your at present not functional Reward Track. You are in control of designing the game, the grinds, the drops, and the store. We will see whether your 'assurances' become reality. Where the philosophy of the game is: monetization throughout the entire game, the proof will indeed be in the pudding and in the eating. The question is: when will the player base, even the whales, have had their fill of your inedible cake mixture? It will be interesting to see whether players will indeed start the grind to obtain the best traceries in slot when they know that by the time they get a new level cap not only their armor will be useless, but now their LIs as well. This game is punitive to its very core and not worthy of the Tolkien name.
  14. What to say? https://www.cnbc.com/2021/10/06/twitch-hack-amazons-video-site-breached-exposing-future-product-plans.html KEY POINTS A hack hit Amazon’s Twitch on Wednesday, exposing information on payouts to content creators and an unreleased Amazon Game Studios product. The anonymous hacker said they were releasing the information to “foster more disruption and competition” in a post to the anonymous message board platform know as 4chan. Amazon’s video streaming service Twitch was hacked Wednesday in a breach that included details on payments to content creators and an unreleased product from Amazon Game Studios. The anonymous hacker said they were releasing the information to “foster more disruption and competition” in the online video streaming world, and called the Twitch community a “disgusting toxic cesspool” in a post to the anonymous message board platform known as 4chan. Twitch confirmed the hack in a tweet, but did not provide details on the extent of the hack and what data was obtained. “We can confirm a breach has taken place,” the company said in the tweet. “Our teams are working with urgency to understand the extent of this. We will update the community as soon as additional information is available. Thank you for bearing with us.” The hacker took more than 125 gigabytes of data in the breach, according to the 4chan post. The data also reportedly include Twitch’s source code and mention of Amazon Game Studio’s plans to launch an online store for computer games, which would be a rival to industry leader Steam. A representative for Amazon Game Studios did not reply to a request for comment. Amazon bought Twitch for almost $1 billion in 2014. The site is primarily focused on videos and live streams for video game enthusiasts.
  15. Makes one wonder whether players approaching 120 may just buy this Valar for the weapons.
  16. This cost 4995 LP back then. Someone on the OF did the math and figured it would cost 52,000 LP to max 2 weapons. This Catch-up Box would be a drop in a bucket. No, I expected max weapons - and I already wrote earlier in this thread that, seeing the expense, this will not happen. SSG will want to mask the costs by offering upgrades in bits and pieces, for mithril and with offers such as just linked. What I have found with SSG is that they started out with better offers (example: tripple bonus LP) and then don't have that return to the store. I think it's the same with this offer.
  17. What keeps coming up in the Forum threads is that the grind may be very daunting for new players. When it's daunting a trip to the store may be more easily made. https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?685689-The-new-Imbued-LI-grind-plan/page4 It doesn't matter to SSG/DayBreak/Whoever that a player spending tons of cash doesn't know how to play the (end)game. Only thing that matters to them is that you spend muchos $$ in the store. This is an interesting question: https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?685657-What-is-the-total-cost-to-level-a-Legendary-Weapon So for 2 LIs it is around 52,000 LP = around US$470. You are probably right, FundinStrongarm, complete weapons may not come to the game. This 'breaking up off the cost' in bite size pieces is what masks the real cost and is the 'perfect' way to monetize. And that's already fully functioning.
  18. Despite, by now age old and repeated, promises of SSG and its precessor that the legendary grind is under consideration, SSG, in its infinite wisdom, has decided to make the legendary grind even worse: https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?685661-I-don-t-know-about-the-new-scroll-of-empowerment-grind I therefore expect that SSG will announce in the near future that it will start selling expensive endgame weapons in the store. Some players will be very relieved to be able to bypass the excessive grind. Others will be maintain that 'the grind is doable'.
  19. And it's over!! Lockdown here, so no Boxing Day crowds. Moving on to the New Year!
  20. Turbine/SSG has always benefited from being purposefully vague, esp. because it led the defenders to preach about 'protecting the existence of the game'. Example: 'I bought the most expensive expansion because the company needs money'. Cognitive dissonance. They really used the division they created within the player base to their advantage. Many never understood that Marketing wasn't making 'dumb choices' but (experimenting with) profitable ones. I wonder how often people behind Turbine/SSG have laughed their asses off over the years. There is a distinct difference between making a fun game that people want to support and creating a game as a means to make as much money as you can wring out of folks. Their ethics are not my ethics. However, didn't Nietzsche write in Beyond Good and Evil that what is 'good' in the eyes of the masses is something different from what is 'good' in the eyes of the rich? Turbine/SSG will think it is doing stuff right = being ethical. Just as they think that applying for that loan is ethical. In Canada we have many long term care homes, where many old people died, that applied for government support and then funneled half of the tens of millions they received into dividends for their shareholders. That money didn't go to the workers and it didn't go to improving services/better protection. I can see EG7 and its investors being delighted with free government handouts. I also know that in Canadian families with 6 figure incomes that didn't take a hit this year, second earners who were laid off etc. applied for government support because 'they could'. The government failed to put an upper limit on combined household income to qualify for that support. Just as the USA government failed to have companies 'show them the numbers' before they were approved. It's even more interesting... SSG giving away its content for free saw indeed a dip in revenue from content sales? Does that justify the loan then?... In this respect, this world, including our beloved fictional gaming worlds, can be (or rather: is) a very rotten place.
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