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Lord of the Rings Online devs prepare players for Mordor but won’t discuss license renewal


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7 hours ago, Longbottom Leaf said:

Making a mad dash to Mordor is a slightly more recent decision that's heavily influenced by business and licensing concerns. Detours through Southern Mirkwood and the inexplicably huge amount of time we spent with the Dunlandings were decisions made on someone else's watch, and in a far different business climate.

There was literally never going to be a scenario in which players didn't at least pass through both Rohan & Gondor.

I ask again - what mad dash? They're covering where the Fellowship members went with about 2 updates per year. They did Far Anorien with Update 18 and Battle of Pelennor Fields. Gondor has taken almost 2 years to go through and they aren't done with it yet. Are the last few updates more frequent, covering bigger areas, or ignoring certain areas to make a straight shot to Mordor?

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This interested me so I wondered how to get some actual data. I copied a Middle Earth map off the web and roughly outlined the areas LOTRO added each year. I'll try to get around the mechanics of posting the image later, it's in PowerPoint at the moment.

My conclusion: there is no sign of a "dash to Mordor". In fact there's a curious reluctance to go there!

(We could have nipped in past Minas Morgul; I guess I'm not the only one who tried to see how far I could get up that valley. But we went past to explore Anorien instead).

Edit: here's the map. I might be a year out in places, this is from memory and information in Wikipedia.

Edit again: my outline of the Moria expansion is a bit misshapen, too far North.

LOTRO_progress.jpg

Edited by Brrokk
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Why dash to Mordor?

Just divert from the book a bit.

Frodo and Sam stand in front of the Emyn Muil, say "fuck this shit, I'm outta here" and take an eagle back to the bird'n'baby inn.

 

 

 

6 hours ago, Thrabath said:

https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?&postid=7597015#post7597015

So now we can only buy stuff ingame/ can we even buy TP? Is this the end?

It's not clear to me what DLC/Offer sales  is supposed to mean exactly? All selling activity or just the stupid American use of "sale" for "special offer", or what?

What's up with the broken post editor here?

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Nice map Brrokk. I think Great River was 2012 though and Dunland/Isengard was 2011 (albeit late in the year). I wonder what was the reason as to why Turbine essentially got Enedwaith & Dunland mixed up in terms of location. Was it just a mistake or is there a good reason for it?

While LOTRO has a lot of faults, I think the overall pacing of the story has been pretty good over the years. You could say we spent too long in Enedwaith & Dunland which arent particulalry inspiring places but it did allow us to get to Isengard from the West via the gap of Rohan and the experience the story of the Rangers. I admit V3 did drag on a little bit too long though. Definitely not a rush in my opinion and with Minas Morgul, Black gate and Mordor potentially still to come it does mean LOTRO will have ticked most of the well-known lore locations. Even if the license doesn't get re-newed.

That said I think Turbine have messed up at little by not making some as good as they could such as the paths of the dead or maybe even the glittering caves. Still at least they ticked them off, other areas like Wildermore didn't really add anything to the equation. There have been some great zones along the way though, specifically Forochel and the Great River. I can't really fault either of them.

For those that never saw it I think this link shows how someone predicted the LOTRO landmass would evolve over time. Made back in SoA AFAIK. Pretty fun!

http://www.visionsofthering.com/expac_timeline.shtml

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3 hours ago, Brrokk said:

This interested me so I wondered how to get some actual data. I copied a Middle Earth map off the web and roughly outlined the areas LOTRO added each year. I'll try to get around the mechanics of posting the image later, it's in PowerPoint at the moment.

My conclusion: there is no sign of a "dash to Mordor". In fact there's a curious reluctance to go there!

(We could have nipped in past Minas Morgul; I guess I'm not the only one who tried to see how far I could get up that valley. But we went past to explore Anorien instead).

Edit: here's the map. I might be a year out in places, this is from memory and information in Wikipedia.

Edit again: my outline of the Moria expansion is a bit misshapen, too far North.

LOTRO_progress.jpg

Looks mostly right. A couple notes:

Enedwaith was 2011, not 2010.

Great River was added early 2012 (looks like you have it in 2009?).

Gondor Aflame (Central Gondor) was added in November 2014.

All here http://lotro-wiki.com/index.php/patches

Looks like steady 5-6 months apart - not seeing a mad dash.

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14 minutes ago, FundinStrongarm said:

Looks mostly right. A couple notes:

Enedwaith was 2011, not 2010.

Great River was added early 2012 (looks like you have it in 2009?).

Gondor Aflame (Central Gondor) was added in November 2014.

All here http://lotro-wiki.com/index.php/patches

Looks like steady 5-6 months apart - not seeing a mad dash.

Thanks for the notes and the link. I'll have a go at correcting the map.

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2 hours ago, FundinStrongarm said:

Looks mostly right. A couple notes:

Enedwaith was 2011, not 2010.

Great River was added early 2012 (looks like you have it in 2009?).

Gondor Aflame (Central Gondor) was added in November 2014.

All here http://lotro-wiki.com/index.php/patches

Looks like steady 5-6 months apart - not seeing a mad dash.

Enedwaith was introduced in late spring/early summer 2010. The In Their Absence instance cluster (tied to Enedwaith) was released about a year later (May 2011).

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26 minutes ago, Talisman said:

Enedwaith was introduced in late spring/early summer 2010. The In Their Absence instance cluster (tied to Enedwaith) was released about a year later (May 2011).

Ah, I thought they were at the same time. I forgot. Thanks.

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Something I can't see definitely from the links above... was Evendim in LOTRO right from the start? I'm hazy on this because it was nearly a year from the launch when I got there.

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2 hours ago, Brrokk said:

Something I can't see definitely from the links above... was Evendim in LOTRO right from the start? I'm hazy on this because it was nearly a year from the launch when I got there.

Books 1 - 8: At launch. the game included The Shire, Ered Luin, Bree, Lone Lands, Trollshaws (Except Tal Bruinen, Misty Mountains (Except Helegrod, Goblin Town, Southern High Pass), North Downs, and Angmar (Except Rift).

After Launch:

Book 9: Evendim (except Annuminas), Helegrod (Misty Mountains).

Book 10: Annuminas (Evendim), Sarnur (Ered Luin), & Haudh Iarchith (Breeland).

Book 11: Tal Bruinin (Trollshaws), Goblin Town & Southern High Pass (Misty Mountains), Rift (Angmar).

Book 13: Forochel.

Book 14: Eregion (except Echad Dunann & surrounds).

 

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3 hours ago, Almagnus1 said:

That pacing is why it just feels torturous looking at the later updates, because the original pre-F2P updates just spewed out the land and content.

If we were still going at that pacing, instead of rolling over to F2P, we would have already been at The Black Gate, and we'd be exploring the Fourth Age by now.

Unfortunately, they steel has long grown cold, and very few actually care enough about LotRO (outside of the LotRO playerbase that is) that LotRO is probably going to be a forgotten footnote once it shuttlers, like Matrix Online - thanks in large part with failing to capitalize on the Hobbit movies because reasons.

I think the reason the pacing of new areas was so rapid after SoA launched is because a lot of the future zones were intended to be part of the original release but weren't quite ready in time or were purposely held back.

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OK, I've made some corrections but from the links posted above I see that I'm not really being consistent with whether an area is one update or several. (It might be more logical to combine all the 15s into one, or else split up some of the Isengard/Rohan areas). I think the result illustrates the general pace of LOTRO over the years though.

The map shows me some places I'd really like to go but probably won't get the chance. Northern Mirkwood, the Lonely Mountain, Dale, Iron Hills, Rhun, South Gondor... I'm hopeful that we might get a few more corners of Gondor or Ithilien, but logically Mordor is next if we're following Frodo. I don't think it can be seen as a "rush" when we finally get there.

LOTRO_progress_2.jpg

On 5/20/2016 at 3:21 PM, bhoris said:

Nice map Brrokk. I think Great River was 2012 though and Dunland/Isengard was 2011 (albeit late in the year). I wonder what was the reason as to why Turbine essentially got Enedwaith & Dunland mixed up in terms of location. Was it just a mistake or is there a good reason for it?

While LOTRO has a lot of faults, I think the overall pacing of the story has been pretty good over the years. You could say we spent too long in Enedwaith & Dunland which arent particulalry inspiring places but it did allow us to get to Isengard from the West via the gap of Rohan and the experience the story of the Rangers. I admit V3 did drag on a little bit too long though. Definitely not a rush in my opinion and with Minas Morgul, Black gate and Mordor potentially still to come it does mean LOTRO will have ticked most of the well-known lore locations. Even if the license doesn't get re-newed.

That said I think Turbine have messed up at little by not making some as good as they could such as the paths of the dead or maybe even the glittering caves. Still at least they ticked them off, other areas like Wildermore didn't really add anything to the equation. There have been some great zones along the way though, specifically Forochel and the Great River. I can't really fault either of them.

For those that never saw it I think this link shows how someone predicted the LOTRO landmass would evolve over time. Made back in SoA AFAIK. Pretty fun!

http://www.visionsofthering.com/expac_timeline.shtml

I hadn't noticed that Enedwaith and Dunland were swapped until you pointed it out. I haven't a clue why they did that. I'm not sure why they decided those places were "Celtic" either.

That is a very interesting final link too.

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30 minutes ago, Brrokk said:

OK, I've made some corrections but from the links posted above I see that I'm not really being consistent with whether an area is one update or several. (It might be more logical to combine all the 15s into one, or else split up some of the Isengard/Rohan areas). I think the result illustrates the general pace of LOTRO over the years though.

The map shows me some places I'd really like to go but probably won't get the chance. Northern Mirkwood, the Lonely Mountain, Dale, Iron Hills, Rhun, South Gondor... I'm hopeful that we might get a few more corners of Gondor or Ithilien, but logically Mordor is next if we're following Frodo. I don't think it can be seen as a "rush" when we finally get there.

LOTRO_progress_2.jpg

I hadn't noticed that Enedwaith and Dunland were swapped until you pointed it out. I haven't a clue why they did that. I'm not sure why they decided those places were "Celtic" either.

That is a very interesting final link too.

Nice.

Turns out Enedwaith was 2010 (I was incorrect above).

Central Gondor (Update 15) was released in 2014. This included Pelargir.

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On 19/05/2016 at 9:41 PM, Almagnus1 said:

There been any news on the license renewal, or is this something they are quietly sweeping under the rug as they make a mad dash for Mordor?

 

4 hours ago, Almagnus1 said:

That pacing is why it just feels torturous looking at the later updates, because the original pre-F2P updates just spewed out the land and content.

If we were still going at that pacing, instead of rolling over to F2P, we would have already been at The Black Gate, and we'd be exploring the Fourth Age by now.

Unfortunately, they steel has long grown cold, and very few actually care enough about LotRO (outside of the LotRO playerbase that is) that LotRO is probably going to be a forgotten footnote once it shuttlers, like Matrix Online - thanks in large part with failing to capitalize on the Hobbit movies because reasons.

First it was a mad dash. Then it was torturously slow. ???

The updates with new areas had slowed down before F2P. Granted, the updates in 2009 did have lots of group content though. But the pace of new areas has been reasonably consistent since almost Mines of Moria in 2008, with a little slowdown last half of 2010/first half of 2011. Last 5 years has had a new chunk every 5-6 months.

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29 minutes ago, FundinStrongarm said:

... Last 5 years has had a new chunk every 5-6 months.

There's the important thing to most players.

BTW on the Middle Earth map, I've got diverted trying to figure out where the Rift is. :-)

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7 hours ago, Almagnus1 said:

The updates basically halted for what seemed about a year (IIRC - prolly not tho) after SoM was released, and even that "expansion" had a "This is it?" moment when it was released.

Throw in the BG raid (which is one of the worst in the game), and you've got a recipe to start killing off the population.  Which is what happened.

I don't remember the game progress seeming to stop for about a year. Which year do you mean? What do you mean by a "This is it moment?" - an expectation of imminent shutdown? an expectation of no more updates?

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6 hours ago, Brrokk said:

I don't remember the game progress seeming to stop for about a year. Which year do you mean? What do you mean by a "This is it moment?" - an expectation of imminent shutdown? an expectation of no more updates?

Mirkwood was released in December 2009; Rise of Isengard (Dunland) was released in September 2011. There's roughly 18 months between these official expansions - that was 18 months during which 65 was the level cap. Many people point to this gap as a sign that nothing was going on in the game.

While the level cap did remain static, there was a good bit of content released, including Enedwaith, the OD instance cluster, the IoF & HoN instances, the Icy Cravasse & Attack at Dawn skirms, etc. The biggest thing is FTP, which Turbine treated as an expac (it's the F2P release date that forms the basis of the current numbering scheme - there have been 18 major releases since F2P).

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On May 23, 2016 at 9:09 AM, Brrokk said:

OK, I've made some corrections but from the links posted above I see that I'm not really being consistent with whether an area is one update or several. (It might be more logical to combine all the 15s into one, or else split up some of the Isengard/Rohan areas). I think the result illustrates the general pace of LOTRO over the years though.

The map shows me some places I'd really like to go but probably won't get the chance. Northern Mirkwood, the Lonely Mountain, Dale, Iron Hills, Rhun, South Gondor... I'm hopeful that we might get a few more corners of Gondor or Ithilien, but logically Mordor is next if we're following Frodo. I don't think it can be seen as a "rush" when we finally get there.

LOTRO_progress_2.jpg

I hadn't noticed that Enedwaith and Dunland were swapped until you pointed it out. I haven't a clue why they did that. I'm not sure why they decided those places were "Celtic" either.

That is a very interesting final link too.

Thanks for this map, Brrokk, it's very interesting to see it laid out in this format.

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6 hours ago, Longbottom Leaf said:

I agree, it's a good map.

Btw, you left off Wildermore, Fangorn & Paths of the Dead. :)

Yes, and Bells of Dale, the Dead Marshes instance, etc. I'm afraid I've given up doing any more than a top-level view. (And I still can't settle on where the Rift is).

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On 5/23/2016 at 10:38 AM, Brrokk said:

There's the important thing to most players.

BTW on the Middle Earth map, I've got diverted trying to figure out where the Rift is. :-)

Northeast outer corner of Angmar.

Never had an opportunity to play it since I arrived too late for people to bother with time-consuming level 50 raids.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, this may be nothing but months ago, my kin switched to Razer. I installed the program and was testing it out. I switched to a channel occupied by a kin officer (won't mention his name) and another kin member. The program didn't announce when someone entered a channel. The kin member said, "So, I heard Turbine has already lost it's LOTRO title."

The officer replied and said yes. The last content to be introduced will be the Black Gate and then in April of 2017, the servers go off. I asked if he read this somewhere and I got "crickets" from them. The kin member quickly said something about hearing it somewhere. They seemed to quiet up real fast for two players who were just discussing just another shutdown rumor. I didn't push it and just took my leave.

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