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LOTRO license extension betting pool - will we be around?


What's the state of the license extension?  

69 members have voted

  1. 1. Your guess?

    • The license has been extended but The Sap is not allowed to say so
      2
    • The license has been extended but The Sap likes playing with us and enjoys the controversy
      6
    • No signature is on the extension at this point but it is actually all agreed on and it is fair to say it *will* be extended
      8
    • No signature is on the extension, it's just that the intention is so clear that they go forward telling us LOTRO will be around 2014+ in good (WB's view) faith
      4
    • Sapience knows nothing, they don't tell him anything except to "shut up these people" and he picked the words to do so
      10
    • Almost fraud. They want to extend the license but negotiations are ongoing. They let The Sap say it's a done deal anyway because that's how business works
      14
    • Outright fraud. The extension is in jeopardy or already rejected and they want players to continue paying more money until they have to admit it
      15
    • Something else entirely is going on, e.g. WB buying the IP or something crazy. Explain below
      3
    • The signature is on the extension but WB holds back on saying so for a planned high-impact announcement for some product (probably not Turbine related)
      2
    • Negotiations ongoing, however they can always invoke the old option if they break down (and the option is bulletproof in the voter's opinion)
      5


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If someone could find the post where he said there won't be any more content.. then the er.. was it a producer's letter? that stated they'd be doing frequent updates.. and couple that with what Troll just said about bug fixes/tweaks etc not being a content update.. well.. that would make for one interesting thread and question for Sapience.

What's so interesting about deleting then going into Warden CM mode? (infract infract ban, infract insult infract ban, mock infract insult mock ban, and the legendary trait gambit: infract mock infract insult mock ban)

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One thing to remember: If Turbine/WB have been paying the licensing fees, Middle-Earth Enterprises won't complain too much. As long as Middle-Earth Enterprises and Turbine/WB feel they can keep pa

It is precisely this "stance dancing" why you can ask about content until you are BLUE in the face - you won't get any answers about anything until they are good and dang ready to tell us nothing - as they have already proven the last three years.

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I also think Turbine defense of their behavior towards player questions regarding the IP license could be likened to "How dare you question our integrity!" I think that's where they go mentally, because I think ultimately they have something to defend against: people tightening up their purse strings.

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I also think Turbine defense of their behavior towards player questions regarding the IP license could be likened to "How dare you question our integrity!" I think that's where they go mentally, because I think ultimately they have something to defend against: people tightening up their purse strings.

Close close... but the party line is finding who to blame for it... "haters, trolls, conspiracy theorists, and people in a certain forums' who thrive on spreading false rumors". What really pisses me off is that they never once mention my dry wit, sarcasm, charm despite of those, my stunning good looks, and my modesty.

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oh so many things to say...

i'll start by singling this out. i think the importance of the Paiz's are grossly over inflated.

Kate Paiz isn't on the executive at Warner/Turbine. she is a game producer of a title & far to public a face (no i'm not attempting to be funny with that.) She & Fernando were recruited for their previous experience with game monitization over at THERE.com.

Anyway a name that would be more relevant in this process would be Jeff Junge.

as to what I think... i don't think any options in the poll speak to what i see happening.

i do not think Warner intends to just carry the licence, they are renegotiating. they have an established reputation with Saul Zaentz that goes well beyond games. i think the terms both parties are attempting to get are as broad as can be without waking the Tolkien Estate letigious dragon.

soo, now to say much... & my biggest fear... i dread any potential plans of a future with the name EA/Warner in the label. i think as we transition into the new year, Warner will begin to reveal some of their cards.

whilst the new licence announcement won't be all the legal nigglies. i suspect the press release will look considerably different than the one on Turbines site from back in 2008.

i don't think LoTRO will vanish immediately, but i don't think this is Turbines game to develop very far into the future, either.

i think Warner intends to transition the Middle Earth franchise in an entirely new direction.

also if Infinite Crisis flops, & so far that seems to be where Infinite Crisis is headed... Warner will likely repurpose Turbine entirely.

I completely agree with a lot of comments here, only the top dogs and WB are in the negotiations, negotiating a broader more encompassing license. Senior VP -> Paiz's -> Real Department/Team Managers -> Rick/TL's -> Et al. Lotro and Turbine do not factor into this license agreement at all. Turbine was purchased for an estimated 160 million USD (http://paidcontent.o...e-firm-turbine/ Cant find a more accurate reference) if the current valuations are accurate I believe you can half that 160 estimate. Its cheaper to shut Turbine down reorganise the resources and take a very nice tax lose write down.

I dont see any advantage to issuing a response to the concerns of the players what if the license is bust and no agreement can be made? Why cut your nose off to spite your face when you have x amount of months to reap some revenue.

Turbine is going the way of Ensemble Studios C'est la vie!

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Pretty certain that only a very few execs in WB and Turbine know the details of the negotiations - reason being it's market sensitive data. Certainly people lower down the food chain like Sap will certainly not know - all they'll be told is that "negotiations are ongoing" and anything else he might put across is just pure conjecture.

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I completely agree with a lot of comments here, only the top dogs and WB are in the negotiations, negotiating a broader more encompassing license. Senior VP -> Paiz's -> Real Department/Team Managers -> Rick/TL's -> Et al. Lotro and Turbine do not factor into this license agreement at all. Turbine was purchased for an estimated 160 million USD (http://paidcontent.o...e-firm-turbine/ Cant find a more accurate reference) if the current valuations are accurate I believe you can half that 160 estimate. Its cheaper to shut Turbine down reorganise the resources and take a very nice tax lose write down.

I dont see any advantage to issuing a response to the concerns of the players what if the license is bust and no agreement can be made? Why cut your nose off to spite your face when you have x amount of months to reap some revenue.

Turbine is going the way of Ensemble Studios C'est la vie!

in many small ways the transition internally at Turbine has already happened:

- Warner uses Turbines servers to facilitate registration of games from other developers

- they bolster development with Turbine coders, on titles falling under other studios.

if Warner doesn't commit to the long term for Infinite Crisis & Turbine can't learn how to communicate with the playerbase, up to the standard set by Riot Games with LoL, these shifts will become more commonplace & what once was the largest independant US development studio, will indeed be but a shadow of its former self.

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Turbine will act as WB MMO division. Whatever Turbine name/ brand will be kept or Trubine will get changed to WB Online or something like that is actually not that important. As time pass more and more developers are either working in other companies or in other studios or on other titles across WB.

So owner is diffrent, managment is diffrent, many developers are diffrent, structure they work in (independant vs part of big corporation) is diffrent. Turbine now and 10 years ago when it was developing SoA is diffrent thing. Just logo and a name is same, but it is a diffrent "entity".

Same as Blizzard or Bioware or many other studios/ companies from many years ago are diffrent - don't expect same things from diffrent organisation that happen to have same name as this old one you remember created a game(s) you liked.

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Turbine will act as WB MMO division.

that may have been the title in the past, but the latest isn't an MMO, but an MOBA.

anyway, it is indeed largely irrelevant.

IC isn't going to preserve Turbines 'Studio' status.

& the whale market certainly won't resuscitate LoTRO, (i doubt it will even provide the sustinance needed to drag this dead horse accross some future line. falling short however... odds look pretty good.)

i also think Ashrons Call2 might see a nice cold storage, before it ever sees launch.

MMO division? perhaps there is some arguement to preserving a trademark status of the Turbine Logo? but frankly, other options seem more likely.

and those things are already happening in the background... & they ain't MMO's.

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If someone could find the post where he said there won't be any more content.. then the er.. was it a producer's letter? that stated they'd be doing frequent updates.. and couple that with what Troll just said about bug fixes/tweaks etc not being a content update.. well.. that would make for one interesting thread and question for Sapience.

http://forums.lotro....-Producer/page3

about the tenth post down and not surprisingly, another locked thread.

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  • 1 month later...

So, I have a theory about how Sapience's waffling on the issue plays with what probably/maybe is a license extension not (yet?) signed.

Sapience says, in essence, "don't worry we will be here" and that it is lotro that will be there.

That could easily fit this situation: WB lawyers have decided that even without a license renewal they can't be forced to close the running game. They wouldn't be able to use new elements of the story (the LOTR books) to make more content. But that would fit WB just fine since it would allow them to put the game into maintenance mode right away with an excuse. While in maintenance mode they can still milk the players who have characters being held hostage inside the game and they can still do all kinds of experimentation with microtransactions. So LOTRO still serves the purpose, in fact not much less so than it does already.

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I started a thread asking about the licence and Sappy one locked it saying it has been answered many times erm no it hasn't. Just like they had no plans to go F2P or do get rid of CM, the words we plan .. Just holds no water with me. It could be closed in 4 months and they still think it is ok to charge up to £70 on an expansion without knowing?

Interesting someone deleted a reply saying it had been extended.

PJ

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I started a thread asking about the licence and Sappy one locked it saying it has been answered many times erm no it hasn't.

FWIW, I was banned from the official forum for asking the same thing. Still have the links to my posts, they weren't special or nasty, just specific.

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Maybe we should say we have every plans to pay for the HD expansion but in the mean time will you give it to us on the strength of that.

Turbine reply:

If you're paying, it means subconsciously you've already answered all the questions yourself. If you're not paying, you can either be banned or stop listening to the dark forces of the Rumoreans.

And THAT, counts in their eyes as "question answered, any further asking is a CoC violation"

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License does get renewed, but due to the mess in PR with slot machines and Tolkien Estate lawsuits and LOTRO just becoming too unstable codewise to maintain easily....

LOTRO gets scrapped within a year, and LOTRO assets such as maps and graphics are revamped as DLC for games like Infinite Crisis and maybe some mechanics for LEGO LOTR titles, mostly or all console stuff.

(Disclaimer, for fucks' sake... the above statement is a random guess based on the "things that wouldn't surprise me coming from WB" that exists solely inside my brain... it's a hyperbole.. well sorta.. i'd wager a whole $20 on it happening... I am however not stating it as fact...)

*Tin hat off*, then again many accurate predictions have come from my turban'd dictator hatted head =P

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One thing to remember:

If Turbine/WB have been paying the licensing fees, Middle-Earth Enterprises won't complain too much.

As long as Middle-Earth Enterprises and Turbine/WB feel they can keep paying licensing fees, the license will get extended.

MEE is after money, first and foremost. That should be evident with the way they have been operating the last 10 years.

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ShireVille.... LOTR LEGO all over, Hobbit LEGO too... Android and IPhone games ...

Should have seen it coming when Elijah Wood got cast as Frodo, much to my dismay.

So picking E.W. as the corporate icon and the well-portrayed Gollum as the whole Tolkien IP:

BTW.... HERE'S YOUR DAMNED HOBBITS AND LOTR DIRECTOR &$%&"&#$%

(Scroll to 5:40 if your browser starts it at 0:00)

And what a LOTRO festival should look like >=(

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I don't think that they will fail to renew the license. WB seem to like laying claim to all things LotR-based, so I doubt that they will relinquish licenses without an almighty struggle. WB will throw their weight around and LOTRO's license will extend by proxy. If, however, anything does happen and this license doesn't renew, you can bet your bottom dollar that it'll be for reasons out of the hands of WB and Turbine, most likely connected to the Tolkien Estate lawsuit.

There may be legal provisos in place that prevent Tolkien Enterprises from granting further new licenses until the case is resolved. It would make sense that their ability to do so is suspended if what they are actually entitled to license is in dispute.

If Tolkien Enterprises are unable to grant new licenses, their hands may be tied regarding extensions to expiring ones like Turbine's for LOTRO. That could be the Tolkien Estate's legal tactic - block Tolkien Enterprises from granting new licenses or extensions to old ones, tie up the matter in long-term legal wranglings, wait for all the active licenses to lapse then claim abandonment.

I'd like to think that's what will happen. It would be very satisfying were it to unfold in that way.

But I'm reasonably certain that the rights will be extended.

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My crystall ball says :

1. Lotro license will be renewed

2. There will be one more expansion next year before third and last Hobbit movie hit cinemas (and will be even more lackluster than HD)

3. After that either Lotro will shut down or will be kept in complete maintenance mode (no expansions, only real updates = cash shop updates now and then and maybe highly overpriced small DLCs / patches very rarely).

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<p>

There may be legal provisos in place that prevent Tolkien Enterprises from granting further new licenses until the case is resolved. It would make sense that their ability to do so is suspended if what they are actually entitled to license is in dispute.

If Tolkien Enterprises are unable to grant new licenses, their hands may be tied regarding extensions to expiring ones like Turbine's for LOTRO. That could be the Tolkien Estate's legal tactic - block Tolkien Enterprises from granting new licenses or extensions to old ones, tie up the matter in long-term legal wranglings, wait for all the active licenses to lapse then claim abandonment

Exactly. There are restrictions on the granting of licenses for online games, that is made clear by the counterclaim for damages in not being able to issue licenses because of the court case, so if they can't make the Hobbit online, they'll not be able to do a new one for Lotro. Until the court case is decided, Lotro is in limbo which is why Turbine are so sensitive about it because stating the simple truth will hurt them. Come the date the license runs out, if the court case has not been decided or an out of court settlement reached, Lotro should close down. Perhaps temporarily, perhaps permanently.</p>edit: considering that the origins of this case are that licenses for slot machines were being sold and the Tolkien Estate took great exception to that, make your own judgement on what putting one into the game was trying to say. Not sure myself whether it's just very black humour or an FU.
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