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Letter from Executive Producer Rob Ciccolini (May 16, 2018)

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Greetings!

Thank you for being a part of the Lord of the Rings Online community as we celebrate 11 years of adventure. Happy Elevenses! I'm writing today to let you know a bit about our plans for the rest of the year and beyond, and hint at some exciting announcements you can expect to read more about in the future.

We've been enjoying exploring Northern Mirkwood, the "There" part of "There and Back Again". We plan to continue our expansion of the broader region throughout the year. We will also be using 2018 to work on classes, festivals, and quality of life improvements based on your feedback and suggestions (including, in a near update, the ability to see sheathed musical instruments).

Let’s look ahead to Update 23! We will be journeying to the Lonely Mountain, and from there following the eastern paths to the Iron Hills, and north to the Grey Mountains. We're excited to put these important parts of Dwarf culture and history on the map. Update 23 will also come with an instance cluster and, later in the year, a new raid. Our new instances will be designed for both groups and solo players, allowing everyone to see the storyline that unfolds in those instances. Full groups will also be able to enter into the more dangerous tiers of these adventures. The new landscape has 80 new quests, and the Black Book of Mordor will continue its story into these new regions. Update 23 will also increase the level cap to 120.

Beyond Update 23, we have some threads to tie off before we are done with North Rhovanion, including Gundabad, the Vales of Anduin, and landscape contiguity with Lothlórien. You may recall that I initially talked about plans to bring you Minas Morgul in my letter earlier this year. We've re-evaluated that plan, and have shifted the Morgul Vale into 2019. We have big plans for Minas Morgul, and are shifting its release out slightly to allow for an expanded vision of the content.

One of the longer-term requests we have heard from you is a desire to take a holistic look at our ten classes. This is a challenge for our relatively small team, so we had to take a look at how best to bring this to you. Instead of a comprehensive overhaul of each class, one at a time, we will instead make targeted adjustments to many classes at once, and continue these incremental improvements over future updates. This allows us to improve all of our classes in a shorter time frame and better balance power and group utility in a more responsive way. You can expect the first wave of class adjustments to happen in the coming months, and continue for some time to come.

Speaking of shorter-term plans, we will be bringing you something new this summer: Seasonal Instances! Two Instances will be added, which will run during the duration of the Summer Festival. First, we are remastering Thrang from the Rift of Nûrz Ghâshu as a standalone, scaling Fellowship Instance. Secondly, we are introducing "A Perfect Picnic", a Festivity Instance that allows groups of varying sizes (including solo players) to enjoy a challenge at their level. Our Festival plans don’t end there, and we will be adding to the Harvestmath Festival as well, although the Boffins have suggested we not reveal more at this time. 

There are several significant initiatives that are still in the planning stages, so I can’t reveal details today. Expect to hear exciting things throughout the year and beyond! Thank you again for taking part in this journey through Middle-earth with us, and I will write more in the future.

Sev~

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You can't balance all ten classes when one of them isn't even finished (and never will be, because the Russian oligarchs aren't paying you enough money).

 

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Oooh a whole raid this year. Sounds like the game's on fire! And visibly sheathed instruments? Pushing the boat out. WoW watch out, LotRO's coming for you. Aren't you lot just the luckiest SOBs out there?

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7 hours ago, Doro said:

Oooh a whole raid this year. Sounds like the game's on fire! And visibly sheathed instruments? Pushing the boat out. WoW watch out, LotRO's coming for you. Aren't you lot just the luckiest SOBs out there?

You know that's such a 2000's look at the competition... no wonder LotRO is all but forgotten.

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8 hours ago, Doro said:

Oooh a whole raid this year. Sounds like the game's on fire! And visibly sheathed instruments? Pushing the boat out. WoW watch out, LotRO's coming for you. Aren't you lot just the luckiest SOBs out there?

For a game that people have said would have closed down years ago, 1 raid is better than none.  Also at least they think it is worth catering to the same number of players that raid, didnt Turbine basically imply the number was too small to justify building a new raid

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48 minutes ago, cossieuk said:

For a game that people have said would have closed down years ago, 1 raid is better than none.  Also at least they think it is worth catering to the same number of players that raid, didnt Turbine basically imply the number was too small to justify building a new raid

We definitely underestimated the dedication of the whales keeping that bloated carcass floating. Who knew there'd be so many people out there with so much disposable income AND no standards at all? However, that's not stopped the "padding" population from continuously dropping. Every month sees a lowest population of all time. Which does make it curious about why they're putting in raids at all. As you say, Turbine didn't give a shit because raiders were a minority, and I can't see that being any different for Turbine 2.0 either. My instant reaction is to suspect something nefarious behind it, some way to squeeze more money out or to just say "look we still have an end-game raid" even if it's just a quick 3-bosser.

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Yeah, I'd thought the largest part of the population just wants to see landscape. If they release it this year it's a new multi-boss end-game raid for the 3rd year in a row I think?

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Lord of the Rings Online should be renamed to Festivals Online. Of course that is after the incoming audit from the Treasury Department and the IRS.

 

Class balance? I suspected from first hearing this, that the worst possible situation could occur. This being Hunters are currently hitting npc test dummies for over 1 million points of damage. Vastin seemed to have a notion of what he wanted, however it looks like he caved in the the complainers and now it appears to be far from what he originally said. Basically he probably screwed up the Hunter class so much it may never return to any semblance of falling inline of so called balance.

Minas Morgul? I never saw this actually happening. To see it pushed back doesn't surprise me.

Mordor, I used up LP I had for several years and purchased it. I approached the Black Gate and realized I had a quest ring lit up in the Waste Lands from previous content. I decide I should clean that up and then move on. Next I knew, unannounced I was watching Frodo cinematic of the ring being destroyed. Ten years, to have that moment essentially stolen from me, was to say the least depressing. Mordor grind, grind, grind, falling through the landscape a dozen times per session, and many other failings to numerous to mention.

Allegiance, more grind and several of the instances for it are broken. To this day those instances are being exploited by circumventing the design. I couldn't bother to make a ticket due to knowing six months later they still existed as old content.

Northern Kingdoms, the grind is real and often returns you to old Mordor, Allegiance grinds to progress. The staggered dailys in this region are mundane and boring. All that crap just for Essence nearly puts me to sleep.

 

SSG said there would be no new level increase yet somehow they forgot that. 80 quest for 5 levels means even more repeat grind.

PvMP, It is the worst I have ever seen it. I think it is atrocious and should be deleted from the game completely. That comes from a Creep only player for over 5 years.

Lag,lag,lag. it won't ever be fixed and I know that. SSG empty words is all I hear about a new engine. Soon with Apple ending support for its 32 bit products, I expect the Mac version to disappear.

Gold spammers, Ha Ha Ha I laughed when I saw Cordovan in a live stream where the gold spammers flooded world chat. How embarrassing that had to be. Its no wonder he does the live streams while stoned on pot.

 

For me this game isn't nearly as fun as it once was. I don't drive myself mad like many of the truly addicted idiots that think this is good game design. The fanboys who constantly try to squash any dissent in game and on the forums will likely go through some counseling to adapt to the real world after this game gets shut down. Come June 5th I might get to see how the long the sun will be giving light. Cordovan will have to eat those words and I'll have no problem spoon feeding them back to him.

I made a thread asking for SSG to not burn the community like many closing games do by telling lies and then dropping the bomb. I made that post because, I saw a possible impact from what the US Government was about to do concerning Russia and sanctions.

 

I'll watch and see what happens.

Moving on to Legends of Aria regardless. It will have many features I always wanted LotRo to have.

 

RIP LotRo

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On 5/23/2018 at 2:47 PM, Splay said:

 

Moving on to Legends of Aria regardless. It will have many features I always wanted LotRo to have.

Looks like Runescape to me... 30 dullahs for cheapest Beta??? Try ESO instead - for 27 quid I have ESO + Morro + Summer. Decent game. Too many Elves of course... :(

 

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On 5/23/2018 at 9:56 AM, Thrabath said:

If they release it this year it's a new multi-boss end-game raid for the 3rd year in a row I think?

That is a big "if", and even so...it's not something I would necessarily be proud of.  On the first raid, you had to lower your graphics drastically just to get through it (which, by today's standards, is unacceptable), the second one was released bugged as hell and almost a whole 4 months after the expansion was launched.  But, Doro is right...the whales have been and are continuing to keep this ship afloat.  The trend now is "well, at least they are doing this..."  There are too many better games out there to resign yourself to that type of mentality.

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If people are curious about supposed standards for MMORPG's, one need but look at how many people have flocked (if only for a temporary breeze) to Bless Online.

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4 hours ago, Aegledor said:

If people are curious about supposed standards for MMORPG's, one need but look at how many people have flocked (if only for a temporary breeze) to Bless Online.

If hentai porn is the "standard", then MMOs are doomed.

Background scenery looks good, but character models were clearly designed for perverts to fap to.

Of course, I realize most gamers secretly wish they were Japanese girls with silicon implants, so it's sure to be a hit! :P

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**Looks at Warframe** 

**Looks at FFXIV**

**Looks at LotRO**

So yeah... LotRO can't do the F2P right, can't do the quality stuff right, can't do the tech stuff right.

And despite crippling issues with the engine (not gonna play again until SSG address the technical issues that cause issues like MT), people still keep playing.

If the game is crashing on you **AT ALL** and you haven't been playing for at least 4-5 hours (at minimum), then it's time to start raising hell with the devs.

8 hours ago, psalm8818 said:

If hentai porn is the "standard", then MMOs are doomed.

Background scenery looks good, but character models were clearly designed for perverts to fap to.

Of course, I realize most gamers secretly wish they were Japanese girls with silicon implants, so it's sure to be a hit! :P

What your'e referring to is a weaboo (see https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=weaboo ), not a gamer.

Oh, and stop trying to be all SJW on another culture's sensibilities... it really shows your dumbassery to the fullest.

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7 hours ago, Almagnus1 said:

**Looks at Warframe** 

**Looks at FFXIV**

**Looks at LotRO**

So yeah... LotRO can't do the F2P right, can't do the quality stuff right, can't do the tech stuff right.

And despite crippling issues with the engine (not gonna play again until SSG address the technical issues that cause issues like MT), people still keep playing.

If the game is crashing on you **AT ALL** and you haven't been playing for at least 4-5 hours (at minimum), then it's time to start raising hell with the devs.

What your'e referring to is a weaboo (see https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=weaboo ), not a gamer.

Oh, and stop trying to be all SJW on another culture's sensibilities... it really shows your dumbassery to the fullest.

O RLY?

 

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5 hours ago, psalm8818 said:

O RLY?

 

It's a Korean game that launched two days ago you fucktard... of course it's gonna be different than our usual Western MMOs AND it's gonna have issues.

So be a good little boy and go read https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bless_Online , and then come back here after you've RTFM.

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1 hour ago, Almagnus1 said:

It's a Korean game that launched two days ago you fucktard... of course it's gonna be different than our usual Western MMOs AND it's gonna have issues.

So be a good little boy and go read https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bless_Online , and then come back here after you've RTFM.

Why are you such an apologist for crappy games?  LOTRO for years, then FFXIV, now THIS?

The thumbnail alone proves my point that the character models are eye candy for pedophiles (which is why I linked it in the first place...the fact that it's a P.O.S. game is just a mere coincidence...).

Now, if you're finished being a total shitlord (which I feel perfectly justified in calling you, after the things you've just called me), you can take your eastern underaged sex doll fetish and have a seat right over there, where Chris Hansen is waiting to have a word with you.

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I may have fallen through a portal to another dimension where this is all supposed to make sense, but I don't get how that game is bait for pedos, or why Al jumped to its defence with such hostility. Looks like a generic eastern MMO to me. Where's the controversy?

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11 hours ago, Doro said:

I may have fallen through a portal to another dimension where this is all supposed to make sense, but I don't get how that game is bait for pedos, or why Al jumped to its defence with such hostility. Looks like a generic eastern MMO to me. Where's the controversy?

Here it is.

 

 

I was simply stating that the female character models in that game are a pervert's wet dream, and Almagus sanctimoniously decided to do what he always does; white-knight for subpar mediocrity and pretend like he knows more about pixels on a computer screen than everyone else.

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This generic crappy MMO aside, I decided to get LotRO back up and running just out of morbid curiosity for how this shuffling undead is still barely, specifically looking at Monster Play (something I enjoyed when I used to play, even with its faults). It's incredible how bad it is now. A half raid of Creeps was getting camped at Grams by half a raid of Freeps (because Freeps are godmode), and that was seemingly the entire server's worth of PvPers on a Wednesday night (so much for server merges helping population). The troll session play was available, so I grab the chance to bring some balance to it. Nope. It turns out Turbine 2.0 have ignored PvP so much that even the session plays are outdated. I ran out with a troll that got taken down by 5 Freeps in a matter of 5 or 6 seconds flat (no exaggeration, it was that quick). How are regular monster characters stronger than the session play?

But considering their yearly letter from the EP doesn't mention PvP, it looks like it'll stay as a broken, one-sided oddity.

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On 5/30/2018 at 4:06 PM, psalm8818 said:

Here it is.

 

 

I was simply stating that the female character models in that game are a pervert's wet dream, and Almagus sanctimoniously decided to do what he always does; white-knight for subpar mediocrity and pretend like he knows more about pixels on a computer screen than everyone else.

And all I'm saying is your some puritanical SJW retard that's so grossly out of touch with modern gaming aesthetic that everything looks like porn to your sad, horny self.  In guessing you prolly sided with Sarkisian in Gamergate based off of your reaction. 

Honestly I don't really care about some average Korean MMO that doesn't have North American servers, but you don't get a pass for being a dipshit about a typically Eastern art style. 

So do us all a favor and go back to lurking again, no one wants to hear your mindless drivel.

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4 hours ago, Almagnus1 said:

And all I'm saying is your some puritanical SJW retard that's so grossly out of touch with modern gaming aesthetic that everything looks like porn to your sad, horny self.  In guessing you prolly sided with Sarkisian in Gamergate based off of your reaction. 

Honestly I don't really care about some average Korean MMO that doesn't have North American servers, but you don't get a pass for being a dipshit about a typically Eastern art style. 

So do us all a favor and go back to lurking again, no one wants to hear your mindless drivel.

Oh just give it a rest, you annoying, childish pratt.

You stuck your nose where it didn't belong, and you got burned.  You just wanted to pick a fight with someone who has called you out for your bullshit in the past.  Well, you got one, shitlord.   Now stand down like you have a modicum of decency and common sense and admit you went full retard for absolutely no reason.

Or continue to be a massive douche canoe and get ignored.  Totally your call, slick.

Whatever your choice, you can't deny that the aesthetics of the x-rated female character models are not in line with the medieval architecture and western landscape design.  That was entirely my point, which you went out of your way to miss, as is your wont.  You were too busy being eager to gainsay me in any way possible.

Seriously, eat a dick.  I'm through with you.

 

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I'm looking for a new game to spend time in, so I decided to resurrect my Guild Wars 2 account and see how it plays these days.  It seems like they're getting a mini-surge of new players lately.

They're running a sale on their expansions till June 8, you can get 30% off either one or both together with the promo code  "WelcomeToGW2"  Their twitter feed has the details and store link.   @GuildWars2

I'm going to try it this weekend and If it feels like I'd want to start playing this over the summer, I'll go ahead and buy them both on sale.

 

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12 hours ago, psalm8818 said:

Oh just give it a rest, you annoying, childish pratt.

You stuck your nose where it didn't belong, and you got burned.  You just wanted to pick a fight with someone who has called you out for your bullshit in the past.  Well, you got one, shitlord.   Now stand down like you have a modicum of decency and common sense and admit you went full retard for absolutely no reason.

Or continue to be a massive douche canoe and get ignored.  Totally your call, slick.

Whatever your choice, you can't deny that the aesthetics of the x-rated female character models are not in line with the medieval architecture and western landscape design.  That was entirely my point, which you went out of your way to miss, as is your wont.  You were too busy being eager to gainsay me in any way possible.

Seriously, eat a dick.  I'm through with you.

 

Yeah, at least I'm not some neanderthal that thinks that a girl showing ankle is X-rated content.

When you describe something that's basically normal as "X-rated" it makes you look like some prude SJW that's gotta enforce their values on everyone else.  The kind that must be fought tooth and nail because they basically make everything not fun and that group of retards are also the ones responsible for ruining Star Wars (and Hollywood in general) because they can't admit when they're wrong.  Just like you.

Just because you have this asinine view of what an MMO should be, doesn't mean it's anywhere close to normal (or right), so please, don't pretend to take the high road and tell me to eat a dick - which is probably something you have a lot of practice with too.

So please let me know when you decide join the 21st century's sensibilities, mmmkay?

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10 hours ago, Almagnus1 said:

1. ...so please, don't pretend to take the high road and tell me to eat a dick...

2. ...which is probably something you have a lot of practice with too.

So please let me know when you decide join the 21st century's sensibilities, mmmkay?

1.  he's not telling you to do something you haven't already done, so what is the issue?

2.  so that just means you have something in common with him.  again, what is the issue?

3.  21st century sensibilities?? ...you live alone, don't you?  

giphy.gif

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5 hours ago, Papi said:

1.  he's not telling you to do something you haven't already done, so what is the issue?

2.  so that just means you have something in common with him.  again, what is the issue?

3.  21st century sensibilities?? ...you live alone, don't you?  

giphy.gif

No, but I know that what he's referring to is basically a Sharia compliant version of women... which essentially involves them being clothed from head to toe and/or stuffed in a bag and told to shut up, and he's flipping out because a lot of the Eastern games don't do that, and I'm calling him out on it.

Edit:

He's basically calling this:

what-to-wear-in-Florida-in-the-fall4.jpg

Porn because, which is also anything more revealing than:

5a2273e6fc7e93511e8b4567.jpg

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