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LOTRO Producer's Letter September 2016

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Greetings! I am Severlin, Executive Producer for Lord of the Rings Online. I just wanted to take the time to update you on our plans for the coming months. I have been working on LOTRO for some time now, but this is my first formal Producer’s Letter, so this is an introduction to some of you. I have taken over the reins for Vyvyanne, who has moved to a different project. I am serving as Executive Producer for both Lord of the Rings Online and Dungeons & Dragons Online. Prior to my place with LOTRO I served as the Executive Producer for Dungeons and Dragons, and as Executive Producer of Asheron’s Call before that. I have been working in the games industry for almost 10 years. I first read the Lord of the Rings trilogy over 30 years ago and I have loved the story and the lore. From reading through the Hobbit to exploring the mythos in the Silmarillion I have been a fan of Tolkien for quite some time.

 
We are currently hard at work on Update 19, titled the March of the King. Our plan is to release the update in October. Update 19 will feature The Last Debate, along with the Host of the West and its March through North Ithilien, the debut of new premium housing on the Cape of Belfalas, a return to landscape questing, and a new rotation of featured instances. North Ithilien was once known for its gardens, and some called it the prettiest area of Gondor. That beauty remains even in the presence of the enemy. The overgrown and wild area still has many plants and flowers that are not found elsewhere in Middle Earth, and players can gather the flora found there to barter for rewards that will remain useful into 2017. We look forward to telling you more about Update 19 in the coming weeks!
 
Premium housing brings vastly more hook points, the ability to own multiple houses, a fully revised housing UI, and more. Current homeowners can continue to enjoy their dwellings, and we remain committed to supporting classic housing in the future. 
 
Excitement is rising in the studio as the story progresses toward some very enticing story moments and some very interesting regions. Looking past Update 19, we are looking forward to exploring the foreboding lands of Dagorlad, experiencing the Battle of the Black Gate, and perhaps even meeting a VERY well-known riddle and magical accessories fan. We've hinted at the possibility of bringing you to Mordor in a full expansion, and we'll be continuing to work through that process in the coming months. 
 
We're also aiming to address some of the things you've been urging us to work on. Lag in large encounters is a top priority. We are working on changes to the Burglar and Hunter class to make them more competitive.  We are also looking to fix more bugs, add some quality of life improvements, and improve some of our festivals to keep them interesting and fun.
 
It remains a pleasure to help guide the LOTRO team through our journey in Middle-earth, and we look forward to celebrating all things Tolkien with you for a long time to come.
 
Sev~

 

 

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Weak on any actual information about what is/isn't coming in 2017.  Especially if you look at past letters as an example.  

The patch notes on BR are a bit thin as well (FFXIV 3.4 patch notes look like a novel in comparison).

/shrug.

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Not that I expected a word on the license.

How did they manage to make the Hunter not competitive in the first place?

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I get the feeling that they're deliberately making hunters a less desirable class compared to the Rune-Keeper and Warden (coincidentally those are both classes you have to buy in one way or another).  Hunters have all those travel skills that made them very popular for farming, and that means that you don't need to buy extra milestones when you play a hunter. I know that's why I made all my crafting alts hunters back in the day.  You can zoom around the whole map with no downtime on a hunter.

That might be tin-foil thinking, it seems reasonable when you consider that they did away with the in-game rep steed for Minas Tirith, putting it in the store instead, they're adding real-money housing now, they made the last update a bundle with the raid instead of separating the quests from the instances and letting you buy them individually - the store seems to be a major factor in the development now, much more so than before.

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Well, either way, saying that Hunters are underpowered seems strange, even for a lame excuse.

Last time I checked you had to join the nuclear non proliferation pact to roll one...

 

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3 hours ago, warspeech said:

I get the feeling that they're deliberately making hunters a less desirable class compared to the Rune-Keeper and Warden (coincidentally those are both classes you have to buy in one way or another).  Hunters have all those travel skills that made them very popular for farming, and that means that you don't need to buy extra milestones when you play a hunter. I know that's why I made all my crafting alts hunters back in the day.  You can zoom around the whole map with no downtime on a hunter.

That might be tin-foil thinking, it seems reasonable when you consider that they did away with the in-game rep steed for Minas Tirith, putting it in the store instead, they're adding real-money housing now, they made the last update a bundle with the raid instead of separating the quests from the instances and letting you buy them individually - the store seems to be a major factor in the development now, much more so than before.

There is no doubt they are pushing the store more and more with any idea. Since the MC implementation which is a placebo coverup where players pay in small numbers the equivalent in big TP numbers.

- RoR: Warsteed colors, all "good" colors locked, each good color in a separate pack.
- RoR: Warsteed trait trees, 3 builds, one locked, more available, 100 MC each.  HD: Same story copy pasted to character's traits.
- House upkeep in MC, house storage 100 MC each. Remember the cost for each upgrade after HD? (1,5,15,25,125 gold). This was reverted.
- Imbuement system, another MC refinery
- New map with instant travel for MC
- Repeatables + reputation gating: quest reset for MC.
- Annoying quest chains: travel to NPC for MC

 

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On 9/23/2016 at 2:58 PM, Papi said:

Weak on any actual information about what is/isn't coming in 2017.  Especially if you look at past letters as an example.  

The patch notes on BR are a bit thin as well (FFXIV 3.4 patch notes look like a novel in comparison).

/shrug.

That's kinda why I'm playing FFXIV now, and not LotRO...  Every update actually updates most areas of the game with new stuff.

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