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Update 9 - Yule Festival

Update 9 - Yule Festival

By: Mara "Aubergine" Patton

Hi all, I’m Aubergine.  I’ve been working on this year’s Yule Festival, and wanted to give you some insight into the changes we’ve made and some of the thoughts behind why we made them.

The most obvious change is the new tiered deeds and corresponding reward tiers.   These have already generated a lot of discussion, so I want to take a moment to explain some more about why we chose to make this change.

Players who’ve always participated in festivals will find that most traditional festival rewards are still available for a reasonably minimal amount of effort. Several hand-held cosmetics, the new festival robe and a festival cloak are all available to everyone without needing to complete any deeds.  The new festival mount is unlocked after completing the first tier of the More the Merrier deeds, which requires you to complete 20 quests in Frostbluff.   

The intent is that, for the casual player who’s played through the Yule Festival in the past and doesn’t want to commit to the time to complete the second and third tier of “The More the Merrier” deeds, you should still be able to get a satisfying assortment of the expected festival rewards without investing a lot of time.

You will likely notice that new rewards are priced more expensively than they were in the past, and this is because the rate of Festival Token acquisition is now much higher in Frostbluff than it was previously. Part of this is because you no longer need convert Frostbluff Coins to Yule Festival Tokens.  All quests give you the new, festival-agnostic currency of Festival Tokens. 

Because of this move to the new currency, all of your saved up Frostbluff Coins and Yule Festival Tokens will be converted to the new Festival Tokens.   We are also no longer requiring Race Tokens or Documents of Mount Ownership to buy any festival mounts.  Any existing Race Tokens you got from the horse race will convert for three Festival Tokens.  The Document of Mount Ownership will be converted into a MTX Festival Ticket that you can use to reset quests.  All of these items (along with other, prime festival currencies like Summer Festival Tokens) are also now items that will go into your barter wallet, regardless of whether or not you have the Premium Barter Wallet.  If you have stacks of these stashed in your vault, be sure to put them into your inventory so that they convert.  You will see them go in to your barter wallet in their current form, and when you re-log you’ll see them convert.

For players who like having challenges to complete and who want the more unique rewards, they can choose to complete tiers 2 and 3 of “The More the Merrier” deeds for additional cosmetics and the War-steed set of appearance traits that match the new Wintry Yule Steed.   Completing these deeds is meant to be an achievement and require nearly daily participation in the festival while it is live.  If you have limited time, you can choose to purchase Festival Tickets to repeat any quest in Frostbluff as many times as you like, whenever you like.   This, of course, brings us to the point that all festival quests are now dailies.  You get one free play through of all the Frostbluff quests every day.  If you would like to repeat any quests, you can purchase Festival Tickets from the store.  

We’ve also added XP to all quests.  We know that some people aren’t going to take the time to do content that doesn’t advance their character in any meaningful way, and wanted to make sure that even if you don’t care about the rewards, you would find participating in festivals a nice way to do a round of nicely stacked, fun quests for a good XP boost.

And, to make sure that figuring out when the festivals are on and where you need to go to participate is less frustrating than it’s been in years past, there’s a new auto-bestow vector quest that will bring you to the festival grounds.  When you get to Frostbluff, you’ll also notice a new daily auto-bestow quest that rewards you with a daily sack of presents once you’ve participated in one of the festival quests.

I would like to extend an enormous thanks to those who have helped out with these revamps.  Amlug has been a steadying hand while I get my developer sea-legs under me.  +Karst has taken over my old role of festival QA support and done a tremendous job.  QA’ing festival content is fun, but it is also unrelentingly difficult and always demands a huge amount of patience, creativity, willingness to work long hours, and a staggeringly unimaginable amount of runs through the content.  I would also like to thank everyone on our test servers who provided excellent and honest feedback and vital last-minute bug catches.  Your feedback and bug catches are vital and hugely appreciated!

I hope everyone has a merry and festive Yule season in LOTRO, and a happy holiday season in general!


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