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  1. #1
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    Housing: Making Decorating Both Fun and Profitable

    This is a bit long, but if you are interested in the aesthetics of housing like I am, please read on!

    I, naturally, have no idea where the state of housing revamp is for Turbine at this moment. If it is still being worked on or if decorating function has not been tinkered with much at the moment, this is my suggestion to make it both fun and more customizable for players, but also profitable for Turbine-- since Turbine is a business, this is important I think to give possibility for us players to see additions come to housing in the future.

    The biggest issue is lack of customization-- it's hard to make houses look different from one another when you are forced to put a very certain type of item in certain spots. The “easiest” solution to this would be to make it a grid-like free-form system, then allow both sorts of houses to allow a certain number of items (with options for buying more 'item space' with TP-- more on the profitability later).

    However, if complete free-form was so easy (or even possible) to do with what resources they have, I imagine Turbine would have done it by now. Assuming this system is not possible, then how can we make the hook system seem more 'free-form'?


    Hook Types

    Right now there are several 'types' of hooks: small/large/thin furniture, small/large wall, small/large floor, ceiling, doormat, small/large/huge/enormous yard, special furniture. These should be condensed into these categories:
    • Floor: Former small/large/thin furniture, small/large floor, and special furniture all go into this new category.
    • Wall: Former small/large wall go into this category. EXCEPTION: Large walls that are actually furniture pieces such as bookcases, drawers, and similar should be turned into FLOOR items.
    • Yard: Former small/large/huge/enormous yard go into this category. While 'enormous' items may not fit into every personal yard, they certainly can fit into some yards, especially when there is the smaller standard house with lots of yard space (making several standards more attractive to players).
    • The two special categories 'ceiling' and 'doormat' remain as they are. All five of these new categories are available in all three categories of housing we currently have in-game.


    Hook shapes and sizes

    Right now hooks are a variety of sizes for the size of the item they represent (somewhat... it's often not entirely accurate). However, I can say for a fact that housing items can go beyond the bounds of the hook's border (see Swan Fountain as a large, not huge, yard item and Seer's Orb as a thin furniture item to look for yourself). This is important for my idea.

    For houses, both the inside and outside (to the border of each property) should have something resembling a grid. A grid of hook spaces. I have, below, what we have in-game right now and a (very) rough idea of what 'grid hooks' would look like, complete with poorly done perspective alignment!

    Current ingame housing


    Rough image of idea


    The 'grid hooks' themselves can definitely have a little space between them, like a third of a hook's length. The hooks themselves I imagine are all the size of 'small furniture' hooks and are equilateral on all four sides.

    Considering we have floor hooks that work perfectly well and remain properly under tables, chairs, and the like, they should still function properly if you have a rug in one hook and a table in the closest, adjacent image. The largest problem would be, for instance, getting the rug centered under the table. This could be done if, instead of the 360 degree (or less) rotation we have now, it was replaced with an x-y axis grid placed inside a 360 degree (or around there) rotation path.



    The center dot is the default placement. You can go up, down, or from side to side in the hook a certain length-- some of the item must remain in the hook, however... it is in that hook, after all. Presumably smaller items would seem to have a lot more movement in the confines of that hook than larger items. You can also rotate it to face different ways with the gold dot on the bottom, as you can now.

    Hook locations

    This is fairly simple-- place hooks everywhere (looking something like the mediocre 'after' picture), with some exceptions:
    • Floor hooks: These should cover the length of the floors inside the house EXCEPT in front of the front doorway (and possibly the doorways of other rooms in the house, though I'll leave that to the discretion of Turbine). The reason the front needs to remain open is simply to make sure no innocent visitors get stuck in furniture. If the player who owns the house decides to block off the rest of the house at the doorway, that is his choice-- but visitors can leave the house by going through the front door, the same way they came.
    • Doormat hooks: Along with the one on the front porch, one can be right in front of the door on the inside as well, since the normal floor hook should not be here. If Turbine decides all doorways inside a house should remain unblocked for whatever reason, doormat hooks can go in front of these doors as well.
    • Ceiling hooks: This can be expanded on greatly from what is in-game now. The ceiling should be covered in ceiling hooks. If a person wants to hang 10 chandeliers in his house, and there is enough room for that many hooks, then let it happen! Again another exception is inside doorways if they go too low and you cannot go through them.
    • Wall: Simple again, inside the house. If Turbine wants to experiment, they can try adding both Indoor Wall and Outdoor Wall hook categories and create some great things for the outside of the house. For now, though, wall hooks just on indoor walls sounds quite fine.
    • Yard: In every part of the yard that is considered part of that property, extended to the border as much as possible, EXCEPT in front of the mailbox and the path that leads to the house. While this does stifle creativity a little, at the least it can prevent some future possible griefing.


    Profitability

    Ok! This all looks well and cool, right? But... Turbine's a company. Revamps like this cost money. Creating more housing items cost money. These are real programmers, real artists, real designers with real families spending time on this. How do we make it profitable for the long term, without annoying (most) players?

    My answer: If at all possible, give every individual account a 'housing décor slots' number. These slots would, like shared storage and the wardrobe, have the ability to increase with purchases of increments of 10 more decoration slots, made with Turbine Points (and perhaps be around the same price as similar services already in game, though that would be up to the discretion of Turbine). Basically, you can use any hook, outside or inside, any type, but you can only use a certain amount of items on your property until you buy more decoration slots.

    However, the number for decoration slots free to a player should be the same for everyone of that subscription level, regardless of what type of house they own. This is tricky, because deluxe houses have 45 hooks (including 6 outdoor, 1 doormat, 1 ceiling) and standards only have 22 hooks (including 4 outdoor, 1 doormat). So somewhere in the middle there needs to be a number that would fit into this new hook system without too drastic of a change for deluxe owners.

    The compromise I came to was:
    • F2P/Premium: 30-35 free housing décor slots
    • VIP/lifetime: 35-45 free housing décor slots.

    The exact numbers would be decided at the discretion of Turbine. It gives a minor perk for VIP players that is merely fluff rather than something game-changing. And with this smaller grid-like hook system, the number of items a player can have in their house easily doubles, if not triples depending on the sizes of the items. That is many players interested in customization buying more decoration slots.


    What About Kinship Houses?

    The savvy will notice I only covered personal houses and not kinship houses thus far. Unfortunately I am unsure how one could work such a system into a kinship house unless the game automatically added how many players in that kinship purchased extra slots and added them altogether for the kinship house, or if they outright created a 'kinship house décor slots' purchase ability and made it so that all the slots people purchased in that category was added altogether. I do not know if such a thing is possible.

    It may simply be better to make available items to be put into it a very large number to fit a kinship's large size, or to make it for kinship houses limit-less. Perhaps some of you have ideas on how kinship houses can work that functions similarly to systems already a part of the game (so we know they have the ability to do it).


    Conclusion

    If it really turns out profitable for player houses, perhaps they'll add even larger properties in neighborhoods all over Middle-earth, make houses per character... and of course access to those properties would cost TP In the end, if such a thing can be pulled off, it can really bring new life into a long-neglected system... and possibilities for expansion in the future.
    Any feedback and constructive critique is welcomed.

    RIP ELENDILMIR • Jingle Jangle
    Landroval
    : LAERLIN (Bio + Drawings) • LAERWEN • OLORIEL • AETHELIND (Bio + Drawing) • NETHAEL

  2. #2
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    So far this is the most in depth idea for new housing construction I've seen, and it's a pretty good one!

  3. #3
    I think this is a great idea to help sort out the housing crisis. I would definitely pay TP for more slots, if I could put things in more areas than I am able to now.

  4. #4
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    Thanks guys I definitely put some thought into it. I am really hoping we'll see some increased decorating options with HD, and I figured this was one idea that could be tried that at the least would be connected to a system already in place.

    RIP ELENDILMIR • Jingle Jangle
    Landroval
    : LAERLIN (Bio + Drawings) • LAERWEN • OLORIEL • AETHELIND (Bio + Drawing) • NETHAEL

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    I really like the way your suggestion offers flexibility to the system without (hopefully anyway) requiring them to "rebuild it from the ground up" (loosely quoting what Sapience said recently in another thread - something he said they are not going to be doing). I've seen some good housing suggestions here in the past, but this one seems the most viable to work with/add onto what is there (that I recall anyway) and what they may have already started working on (supposing they are working within the hook system still).

  6. #6
    that's a great suggestion, but one thing i do not agree- i think both premium and vip players should have more decoration slots then the delux house normaly have- if i'm going to have LESS place to put my decoration on, and not going to pay TP for that too, then this update will only make it worse- our free slots got decreased in amount.

  7. #7
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    @ParrotGuy-- I was definitely trying to come up with a compromise between the huge gap between the current allowed decorations in standard and deluxe houses to give everyone the same base number. While it's not something I'd like very much, myself, I believe the benefit of deluxe houses allowing two chests as opposed to one would overall negate the effect of losing a handful of free housing decorating slots in a deluxe house.

    RIP ELENDILMIR • Jingle Jangle
    Landroval
    : LAERLIN (Bio + Drawings) • LAERWEN • OLORIEL • AETHELIND (Bio + Drawing) • NETHAEL

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Laire View Post
    @ParrotGuy-- I was definitely trying to come up with a compromise between the huge gap between the current allowed decorations in standard and deluxe houses to give everyone the same base number. While it's not something I'd like very much, myself, I believe the benefit of deluxe houses allowing two chests as opposed to one would overall negate the effect of losing a handful of free housing decorating slots in a deluxe house.
    I definitely disagree. I do not want to lose decorating spots. What does a second chest have to do with that? I want my decorations out, not in a housing chest.

  9. #9
    Lots of people would spend money on this. And for more furniture.

    If you want to make real money only enable it for vip's.

  10. #10
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    If I could +rep you, I would. Great idea.

    But please... PLEASE... Make the houses bigger
    Glorgnorbor, A Rock And A Hard Place, Stop by our Friday music shows! 4PM EST at the Bree West Gate on Dwarrowdelf!
    If a Malledhrim Soldier dies alone in the forest because of canceled quest, will it make a sound? ~Leixy
    Took me a few years, but I renewed my signature :)

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caernach View Post
    I definitely disagree. I do not want to lose decorating spots. What does a second chest have to do with that? I want my decorations out, not in a housing chest.
    Because the majority of the people who buy deluxe houses dont do it because there's more decorating space-- they do it because there's more storage. If they offered a second storage chest for somewhere around 6 gold in standard houses (to offset the cost of a deluxe) and then increased upkeep pay significantly per week after that purchase, you'd probably see more standards being bought. The majority of people at this time buy a larger house for storage only because of limited decorating options.

    My outline, while no-where near perfect, was an attempt to compromise between the huge differences between standard and deluxe decor slots at the moment to make them a bit more even and give Turbine the ability to profit from it. You'll note that it is areas where Turbine sees profit that get often the most updates... so that is what housing would need in order to see it grow in the years to come.

    RIP ELENDILMIR • Jingle Jangle
    Landroval
    : LAERLIN (Bio + Drawings) • LAERWEN • OLORIEL • AETHELIND (Bio + Drawing) • NETHAEL

  12. #12
    Laire,

    I have to say this is awesome . I love the in depth you went and one thing for sure if they do this I would be happy to buy and pay with tp or mithril coins. Thank you so much for sharing.

  13. #13
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    I'd love to have a lot more hooks!!!!

    Getting rid of the many different types of hooks, and replacing them with only 1 wall type, only 1 floor type and only 1 yard type would give us a lot more flexibility than we have now.

    Making them all 'thin/small' would also allow them to be placed in a tight pattern without becoming too much of a hassle to select individually.

    But... you do have to keep in mind that each hook in each house is individually placed by hand. Which is why Turbine needs an intern to do this. Or a community modder.

    I betcha if Turbine asked, there'd be plenty community members willing and able to place loads of hooks in houses and yards!

  14. #14
    /signed for the concept. But I agree with others that deluxe should have more hooks.

  15. #15

    Thumbs up

    Just perfect, I love idea! If Turbine would ever do it this way, I'd just shout "Shut up and take my money!"
    Please note, that I'm not a native english speaker. So if you find any spelling or grammar mistakes, please collect them and send me a title when I hit 200...

  16. #16
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    personally I like the idea yet it might be too complicated for some people and drive some people away from housing.

    again I like the idea I just don't see it as something everyone that plays lotro will like.

    so I give you a ratting of max stars and say good luck although a lot of people might hate it.

  17. #17
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    1. no hook types at all
    2. drop item wherever we want
    3. move the item around however we want. From the players perspective up/down/left/right/forward/backward
    4. rotate the item around all 3 axes pitch/yaw/roll
    5. at least 200 items for every house (500 for a guild house?).
    6. a droppable 3d representation for most items (weapons, armor, potions, scrolls)

    And they don't even need to invent new things for that, they can copy this from another 10 year old MMO.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Neumi View Post
    1. no hook types at all
    2. drop item wherever we want
    3. move the item around however we want. From the players perspective up/down/left/right/forward/backward
    4. rotate the item around all 3 axes pitch/yaw/roll
    5. at least 200 items for every house (500 for a guild house?).
    6. a droppable 3d representation for most items (weapons, armor, potions, scrolls)

    And they don't even need to invent new things for that, they can copy this from another 10 year old MMO.
    This is what I was hoping for when I first heard about the housing revamp, and I was greatly disappointed to hear we won't be getting something similar.
    Estellost, loving husband of the wonderful Shinarra

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Neumi View Post
    1. no hook types at all
    2. drop item wherever we want
    3. move the item around however we want. From the players perspective up/down/left/right/forward/backward
    4. rotate the item around all 3 axes pitch/yaw/roll
    5. at least 200 items for every house (500 for a guild house?).
    6. a droppable 3d representation for most items (weapons, armor, potions, scrolls)

    And they don't even need to invent new things for that, they can copy this from another 10 year old MMO.
    I completely agree.

    Item limit instead of hook setup. By now, most of us have overflowing vaults, shared vaults, housing containers etc with housing items, which Turbine seem to put in the game in bucketloads, without the possibility to display them.

    As the 1 house/account seems here to stay, then moving the hook system to a number of items system is definitely an idea.

    If I remember correctly, the other 10 year old MMO does housing slightly differently, with each house being instanced, and several versions of each house, so you choose the occupant when you go into it. Maybe this is what allows for a more freeform housing setting in that MMO.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhiaden View Post
    If I remember correctly, the other 10 year old MMO does housing slightly differently, with each house being instanced, and several versions of each house, so you choose the occupant when you go into it. Maybe this is what allows for a more freeform housing setting in that MMO.
    I don't know which one you are talking about but it's not the same I was talking about
    The one I was talking about had no instances at all, each house was unique and existed only once per server. Houses could also contain vendors, greeter NPCS, "remote controlled" NPCs (the owner could set up to 14 waypoints for deco NPCs which the NPCs then patroled, I had 4 NPCs running around my main house all the time), crafting stations and so on. It was possible to alter the limit of items in a house, my highest limit was 1200, I think 1350 was possible with shop items. that was very necessary for crafters who had many containers full of different materials (materials had stats which would influence the quality of the crafted item, one item would require a very flexible iron, the other item would require heat resistant iron for example). Lotro is not that complicated, so we definitly don't need over 100 items in a house, but ~200 would be nice.

    Lotro has neighborhood instances, these allow us to place items outside the house as well, but they all have to be loaded once we enter a neighborhood. So on the outside of a house there has to be a low limit for items, that much is clear. The interior however could have much higher limits.
    The first thing that has to go are the hook types. If we really have to use a low limit of items in our houses, then at least we should be able to place whatever deco item we want.

  21. #21
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    Thumbs up Housing definitely needs to be looked at seriously by the devs...

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhiaden View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Neumi View Post
    1. no hook types at all
    2. drop item wherever we want
    3. move the item around however we want. From the players perspective up/down/left/right/forward/backward
    4. rotate the item around all 3 axes pitch/yaw/roll
    5. at least 200 items for every house (500 for a guild house?).
    6. a droppable 3d representation for most items (weapons, armor, potions, scrolls)

    And they don't even need to invent new things for that, they can copy this from another 10 year old MMO.
    I completely agree.

    Item limit instead of hook setup. By now, most of us have overflowing vaults, shared vaults, housing containers etc with housing items, which Turbine seem to put in the game in bucketloads, without the possibility to display them.

    As the 1 house/account seems here to stay, then moving the hook system to a number of items system is definitely an idea.
    ...

    So many good suggestion in this thread! I hope that the devs seriously consider them.



    Our Kinship is made up of family and friends, and we all play a few MMO's together. The choices in customization play a huge factor in which games get the most of our time--and money. It is really, honestly, a huge factor in our joint gaming experience.


    I found this thread because we just went through this: Last week, we finally purchased our first LOTRO Kinship house. "Disappointed" is an understatement. It was so big, we had no idea how restricting those "hooks" were going to be. Two rooms are pretty much just glorified hallways; the upstairs room we had wanted to turn into a dorm, with several beds...but of course, that isn't an option. And downstairs...lets just say, it looks like a hostel with a cheap continental breakfast buffet. lol! Not the luxurious, Elvish Kinship House we had envisioned the whole time we worked to acquire it.

    We are thinking of letting the Kinship House go, even though we already upgraded the storage chest a bunch, to hold all of the housing items we have been acquiring over the years. The thing is, we all took turns trying to get rare furnishings from the festivals--spreading the work out--because we presumed we would all be able to enjoy them together, in one shared house. But, since that's not an option, might as well just get small, cheap houses, with one Deluxe House for meetings. Its a reluctant compromise, though.

    The "other" MMO we play has so much more in the way of personalized customization, its really hard to come back to the restrictions of LOTRO. I love the lore of The Rings (no pun intended), I just wish the houses were more accommodating...




    (We are on the Landroval server, Tir'Elenya Kinship House at 5 Waterbank Road, Lórendor, Falathlorn Homesteads.)
    Last edited by Meluidhren; Dec 07 2013 at 08:31 PM.

  22. #22
    I really like this idea. As a new player, I was disappointed when I realized how limiting the hook system is. This is my first MMO, but I used to play Sims a lot and got used to that level of customization. The main room is in particular disappointing, that huge expanse of space where you can only put the special furniture is totally wasted. There's no way to make a proper kitchen, or a study or even put chairs at the desks and tables, which looks really stupid. The result is a hodge-podge that doesn't resemble an actual home in the least, though since I used the two smaller rooms as bedrooms, they're not so objectionable and actually look like they're supposed to look. If the grid system was utilized, you could line walls with bookcases, arrange the space in any way you wished, dividing the main area into different spaces with bookcases and dividers, making dormitories...I can certainly see this enabling the use of a lot more furniture and items and requiring more storage space. As it is now, with the exception of a door-mat, my main toon's space is pretty much done. There won't be any major changes, just some minor tweaking. I may get bored with it eventually and let it go.

    On the same subject, I know that server space is probably an issue, but I don't understand why Turbine doesn't offer the option of purchasing extra houses on your account (with Turbine points, of course), for your secondary characters. My first toon is a hobbit, and she set up a beautiful hole in Michel Delving. I thought I could buy extra houses and had my eye on one in the Elven lands. I was very sad to discover that not only could I not buy a house for her there, my other characters (who are elves and humans), had to live in Michel Delving too, even though their personalities are quite different from hers. It messes with my sense of immersion that I spend as much time with them as I do her, but they in essence have to live as footless vagabonds, and occasional guests in her house.

    If extra houses were available and had to be maintained, I think that would increase the amount of participation. I've looked at the houses available in my neighborhood (Waterley), and most of them are vacant. I've seen this in the dwarven, human and elven neighborhoodson my server (Imladris) as well. I understand that overcrowding was a problem at one point, but it seems in my limited experience that things have gone too far the other way. My neighborhood is a ghost town-I've never seen any of the few toons that live there.
    Last edited by Dolamrothdame2; Dec 09 2013 at 08:40 PM.

 

 

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