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Tarantula

Recap of announcements/Q&A pub night after PAXEast - unicorns and a wedding

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As the title indicates, both a video and written highlights:

http://www.mmo-central.com/2020/02/29/pax-east-2020-big-news-at-the-standing-stone-pax-east-meetup/

Here’s the highlights of the announcements:

  • Recap of DDO Producer’s Letter (New Feywild expansion, new Shifter race)
  • Summer in LotRO will focus on the wedding of Aragorn and Arwen
  • New theme of orcs vs dwarves: The Legacy of Durin and the Trial of the Dwarves
  • Two big updates in 2020 in this story
  • Leads into a Gundabad-themed expansion in spring 2021
  • New content coming later this year: (1 endgame, the other scaling content called Missions so capped and lower-level characters can play together)
  • Rohan housing will include stables so you can show off your favorite mounts
  • Rohan housing due when Helm’s Deep is released on Legendary Servers

Then there was an open Q&A involving both games, so here’s a summary of those questions.

In DDO, they have plans to get to level 40 over the course of years. In LotRO, there will be more landscape updates, one upcoming tentatively called Mists of the Wilderlands that will include the Floodfells and points north. Ciccolini hinted at something called The War of Three Peaks that will have some new landscape created for it as well. He declined to answer what would happen with Minas Tirith in time for the wedding, that we would have to wait and see what they have planned. A player asked about what the DDO Feywild experience would look like, and they showed a piece of concept art with a twilit castle, but it would be all new geography. Then Jerry ‘Cordovan’ Snook pointed to one of their other projected images and revealed that there would be unicorns in that update. Yes, you read that right. DDO is getting unicorns before the end of the year.

Ciccolini answered another question about whether he’d want to include psionics in the game, with the answer being yes, but he added that whether they would actually do that, the magic 8-ball answer to it would be ‘maybe’. A LotRO player wanted to know whether they would be going off the current map, perhaps to the East, and Ciccolini replied that the story people would love to visit Umbar or Rhûn first and that their longer-term plans may bring us into places like that – note the lack of a definitive yes or no or which specific areas. Then to a wonderful cosplayer’s question about whether the Shire would get Scoured, Ciccolini teased the crowd by saying that it may happen in a way we don’t expect.

Next up was an intriguing question about megaservers from a DDO player, who wanted to know if that would be a possibility. Ciccolini said they were investigating the options, but if they would move forward, their plan would involve completely-new megaservers that everyone would need to transfer to for free. The benefit would be to clean up over a decade’s worth of idle names that players have not been able to use anywhere except on the Hardcore League server of late. The current stumbling block, he said, was ensuring that guilds could finally be able to transfer server to server. It must be stressed that this is not a definitive in-progress plan, but a long-term goal. It would be similar to LotRO’s server consolidation in 2015, except every active player would have to transfer to a new home. Someone else asked about whether LotRO would be going through a similar megaserver process, and Ciccolini gave a surprising answer. He said they are considering a new kind of Legendary Server with possibly different rules but he didn’t go into details.  However, he did say they had no plans to do another server consolidation there.

Next there was a question about the possibility of housing in DDO, and Associate Product Manager Johnny ‘SSG_RedPanda’ Liu replied, “Maybe.” It was a running gag throughout the evening where when players asked if something was possible or in the works, his answer was always a drawn-out ‘maybe’, with Ciccolini double-checking to see if he could say something specific about certain questions. Their main concern is how to manage personal housing, since guild airships are one per guild but take up a large amount of data. Liu chimed in to note they were aware of the threads suggesting Sharn apartment housing, and that they were in discussions, but of course the answer is still ‘maybe’. Ciccolini also hinted at their desire to possibly update guilds/kins in both games, but no current details at this time, although they were far more hesitant at the notion another player brought up involving DDO guild true reincarnations.

The final question of the evening has been a hot topic in the LotRO community for ages. For those languishing in the Legendary Item system, Ciccolini there’s going to be a more short-term update to assist players more easily obtain Scrolls of Empowerment at endgame. Plus, they’re looking at an all-new system that’s more essence-based, with players being able to transfer the meat and bones of their current LI into it without losing their investment. Ciccolini hesitated to speak more about it because it’s still being conceptualized, but he was hoping it might come out this year, but might take longer depending on the tech needed to make it happen.

So those were the highlights of the video above. We will be sitting down with Ciccolini next week to delve further into the big announcements and other hot-topic questions, and we’ll also be bringing you a world-first exclusive interview with LotRO head of QA and composer Bill ‘Darth Celtics’ Champagne, so keep an eye out for that.

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If an article written by Druidsfire is the best the press has to offer about LotRO, then it truly has become a forgotten MMO.....

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What speaks volumes is that SSG had not actual presence inside PAX and opted to gather at a former producer’s pub instead. Not a very strong proof of life.

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On 2/29/2020 at 1:37 PM, Tarantula said:

...

Then to a wonderful cosplayer’s question about whether the Shire would get Scoured, Ciccolini teased the crowd by saying that it may happen in a way we don’t expect.

...

This does not inspire confidence.

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A year long festival wedding. Ya a year. I can't say it excites me.  Let's fuck around and make it last for as long as we can just because.

Gundabad? What the hell! This gets mentioned even less but SSG will spread the butter as far as they can.

ILI grind? No problem. SSG will just replace that old tedious grind with a new bigger repeating grind using essences.

Every time I read or hear Severlin say something , I can't help but to feel I just gargled a roadkill.

No mention of fixing PvMP makes me wish everyone at SSG gets a flat tire everyday for a year. I really hope Amazon/Leyou Tolkien game puts down the LotRO
 horse. Even if the newer game flops after its initial launch, I'd be happy to know it bankrupts SSG.

29 minutes ago, warspeech said:

This does not inspire confidence.

Agreed

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Gundabad could be done really well. There's a lot of history in that mountain, and a lot that can be hinted at and expanded on, more than a dozen millennia of Dwarven rule, followed by almost 5,000 years of Orc occupation of a Dwarven holy site (where the first Durin woke up under the newly-made stars before the sun and moon even existed). Chances are it's got a lot of ancient "shrines" and the like throughout, most defaced by the Orcs but a few hidden away from vandalism (I've always pictured the awakening spot of Durin as a rough neolithic place, not the sort of grand structures the Dwarves later built). It's got Angmar to its west (and a bit to the east), Forodwaith to its north, Moria not that far to the south (potentially connected by the nameless things far below), and the Grey Mountains curling around the dragon-infested Withered Heath to the east, and all that could give a lot of room for prehistoric malevolence to be far below, crawling to the surface or dragged up out of desperation by whoever has the current tenuous grasp over the three peaks. After all, the Orcs that once ruled it after the First Sacking were all wiped out during the Second Sacking about 200 years before the game time, and were later replaced by more Orcs from the Misty Mountains when the Dwarves couldn't (or wouldn't) hold it.

Unfortunately for the 20 people still playing, most of that stuff was already done (badly) for Moria, and chances are it will just be a much smaller rehash of that. Someone will have to remember to mention it in passing when it's released without fanfare again, like the other ones. Honestly, I don't actually know what expansions came after Helm's Deep and I didn't even get through that mess.

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Yeah, in theory it could be a great addition to the game, connecting east with west and as you say even with Moria, also opening up a path to the north with Forodwaith where all possible sorts of evil lurks, with maybe even some ruins of utumno lying around. 

It will probably be disappointing and even lacking an east/west connection; while it should have a connection to the rift, helegrod and the moors I think. But they did something weird with the place connecting the misty mountains with the iron mountains. http://lotromap.net/terrainmap/google.html when looking at this map, it became such an enormous mountain range;

Though advertising will be easy "Largest expansion ever" "huge landmass" with lot's of impassable mountains...

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6 hours ago, Thrabath said:

Though advertising will be easy "Largest expansion ever" "huge landmass" with lot's of impassable mountains...

Advertising?

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On 3/2/2020 at 3:47 PM, Almagnus1 said:

If an article written by Druidsfire is the best the press has to offer about LotRO, then it truly has become a forgotten MMO.....

She is soon to run a class at Cory Olsen's "University" teaching how to play Lotro. 

Put all your red skills together on the hot bar and bash keys 1 to 6 until you die.

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Against my better judgement I took a look at the 2nd interview. At the mention of the player abuse of the transfer system, Jean piles in with a "not guilty" comment. It would seem her huge abuse of the wardrobe limits is just fine. Continues the denial. 

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58 minutes ago, Macdui101 said:

She is soon to run a class at Cory Olsen's "University" teaching how to play Lotro. 

Put all your red skills together on the hot bar and bash keys 1 to 6 until you die.

OMFG.

If they are charging tuition for this, it's criminal.

39 minutes ago, Macdui101 said:

Against my better judgement I took a look at the 2nd interview. At the mention of the player abuse of the transfer system, Jean piles in with a "not guilty" comment. It would seem her huge abuse of the wardrobe limits is just fine. Continues the denial. 

I refuse to give her view counts, but I do appreciate your summaries here, Mac.

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The OF is in a tizzy about the River Hobbits (the 6 or 7 regulars who still post there anyway).  Severlin says "it's something we could look at"...and all at once, people have short memories with this company and what those words actually mean.  But it doesn't stop people like Amorey (oh yes, she has returned *shocker*) from starting a thread entitled "The River Hobbits are Coming".

#delusional

 

 

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On 2/29/2020 at 1:37 PM, Tarantula said:

Ciccolini hesitated to speak more about it because it’s still being conceptualized, but he was hoping it might come out this year, but might take longer depending on the tech needed to make it happen.

 

So maybe a new LI system in 2021? Dont work too hard

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"Professor (teacher) what have you" Druidsfire has her first rambling class completed.

Their were some facts about the game and the history leading to SSG. Even some "insider" lines fed to her by SSG. That the pay checks/cheques come from Daybreak yet no one knows who owns SSG seems to be still beyond her. There was a huge Passive/Aggressive moment when she looked into the camera and told the audience "we won't judge you for playing free to play".  She did promote her fellow streamers ofc including Big Ed who she still refers to as a F2P not the premium player he is. When you only have a tiny pool of talentless streamers to compare how are you to know how much you suck?

Hasn't she lead enough n00bs up the creek with her ideas on how to play? Turned into the usual SSG and self promotion spiel.

If you're forking out dollars for classes in this seat of "learning" then you are ripe for SSG to get their claws into you.

 

Mac

 

 

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On 3/9/2020 at 6:51 PM, Macdui101 said:

"Professor (teacher) what have you" Druidsfire has her first rambling class completed.

Societal Leeching 101

First semester: How to beg online to pay for basic things you should be responsible for as a grown adult.

 

Or was it actually how not to play LotRO? She'd be perfect for that and never realise it.

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