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  1. #1
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    Letter from Executive Producer Rob Ciccolini: A Look Ahead

    Greetings, and thank you for being a part of Lord of the Rings Online! 2017 has been a huge year for us. This not only was our first full year as Standing Stone Games, but was also the year we realized one of the most exciting dreams we've had for more than a decade: bringing you Mordor, the fate of the One Ring, and the Fall of Sauron.

    2017 also marked the start of a new long-form tale of our own with the release of the Black Book of Mordor. We're excited to further explore the lore and setting of Middle-earth for years to come, both by telling our own stories, and continuing to add the most iconic encounters, locations, and developments from the trilogy to the game.

    The Black Book of Mordor's plot continues in Update 22, leading to Northern Mirkwood! We are busy developing this region, including Thranduil's Court, Dale, Laketown, and Erebor. Who is now leading Dale and Laketown? Why are legions of refugees fleeing from Rhûn, with tales of death and horror on their lips? And why are spiders missing from the forest, and where have they gone? We'll answer these questions and more. We are also already planning for our updates between 22 and 23, including new additions to the Anniversary event and Summer Festival.

    Before Update 22 releases next year, we’ll be celebrating the end of 2017 by launching a new raid: The Abyss of Mordath. In a thrilling conclusion to the storylines introduced in Dor Amarth, you and your friends and kin will descend into the Black Pits of Mordor in pursuit of King Váskmun Greytooth and the Firehorn Dwarves. At last, the time has come to put an end to King Greytooth’s misguided quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf-ring, Manthríf, and avenge the threats he levied against the dwarves of Durin’s Folk. Alas, the devoted followers of the Order of the Eye also search the Abyss, for they seek both vengeance on the Firehorns and knowledge of Sauron’s greatest secrets. However, neither the Firehorns nor the Order of the Eye know the truth of the terrors that lurk in the deepest shadows of the Mordath. This Level 115 Raid features three new boss encounters and offers a plethora of new rewards including best-in-slot armour, jewellery, off-hand items, and unique housing items!

    Update 21.3 will feature new Housing Items, some of which will be found in the raid, others will be available through the Quartermaster in-game, and a few will be available in Gorgoroth Lootboxes. Speaking of new stuff, the Yule Festival will see new cosmetics, including a woodland crown, a new Winter dress, and a new Yule-themed cloak. Additionally, we have long heard players request the ability to have an Elk mount which will be offered in addition to two new cosmetic pets.

    One of the projects begun in 2017 that will continue into 2018 is the update of our character avatars. We're planning to release the Hobbit and Dwarf avatar update, and will continue afterwards with further improvements.

    For our musicians in LOTRO, we're excited to announce that a new instrument is being added to the music system: The fiddle! We expect this new instrument to debut in Update 22.

    Looking beyond Update 22, we know you have been asking to see even more classic moments from the trilogy. We have a way to go before we see Aragorn and Arwen's wedding, but we intend to bring you other well-known parts of the book. In Update 23, we intend to visit Minas Morgul, and say a fearful hello to Shelob herself.

    We also plan to make improvements to various systems like class skills and power, evolving player power through the Legendary Item system, and more. We'll update the Anniversary Event along with all of our other yearly Festivals. In particular, we’re looking forward to seeing Bingo Boffin’s Harvestmath Festival tale that began this year continue into next year.

    Once again, thank you for helping us bring Tolkien's world to life. We love seeing your concerts, plays, events, livestreams, artwork, poetry, writing, and more, and we think it's one of the things that really sets our community and game apart. We look forward to another year of celebration with you!

    Sev~

  2. #2
    Some of these ideas are great and wonderful and amazing, and we the players THANK YOU for your continued dedication and hard work!

    However...

    ...elk mounts. Cringe. Nobody rode elk in Middle Earth.

    Also, people have been begging for a homestead in Rohan for a long, long time. PLEASE heed our begging, whining, and pleading.

    New hairstyles for avatars? Another thing people have been requesting since forever.

    How about fixing the boots that bleed through our leggings? The hair that bleeds through our hoods? The backpacks that bleed through chairs? Getting rid of the DESPISED "stand up and scratch/look around for no reason" tic?

    I know you're all about keeping existing players around and drawing new players in, and that requires constant new content. But please don't ignore the players who've stuck around for years and years and have such humble little requests to enrich the game we love so well.
    Owner - Laurelin RP Group Discord server - https://discord.me/laurelinrp

  3. #3
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    Praise the Valar I can finally play a Fiddle soon! i been waiting for years!
    Pontin Level 115 Hobbit Burglar Kinship Second Breakfast Crickhollow Server. Staff member of the Lord of the Rings Discord Server, and Owner of Middle-Earth Lore discord.
    Alts: Legoan Elf Hunter, Belladonea Hobbit Minstrel, Unnari Dwarf Guardian, Jorunn Man Captain, Sallyberry Hobbit Warden. Laurelin Server, Edwell Man Hunter.


    Here's some of my Screenshots Throughout Middle Earth. Also can follow me on Twitter for Adventures in Middle Earth and more!

  4. #4
    Looks like good stuff! I know me and many other folks on the forums have been critical of LotRO recently, but that is only because we all love this game and the world so much. I'm very interested in dale and seeing how the fourth age will start in LotRO, ever onwards!
    Last edited by Ronimli; Nov 21 2017 at 02:32 PM.
    The road goes ever on.

  5. #5
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    Elk mounts.. No. The rest Yes!

    And the 64 bit client??????

  6. #6
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    Hoho epic news on Master Christopher Tolkien birthday /toast
    Always hoped to ride back North but wasn't expecting! awesome! great stuff coming! A new journey begins \o/

    PS: hope we do follow the rest of the book events in a later future! FOR FOG!
    Rucagorn, The White Guardian - Portugal
    fellowshipguardians.guildlaunch.com/
    .

  7. #7

    Cool

    Soo much awesome! Thanks Sev for sharing the future with us!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowlock View Post
    And the 64 bit client??????
    Not a single mention...nothing at all about one of the biggest problems this game faces--performance.

    So it kind of makes the news about seeing Dale and the rest of Erebor, etc. fall pretty flat (imo)

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    2,660
    Enjoyed reading the quick update from Lotro's EP, though after 9 years of playtime I take everything with a grain of salt.

    As always, I look forward to the landscape and regions. If Dale/Northern Mirkwood/Erebor are anything like the grandeur of the Allegiance Hall under the mountain I will be ecstatic. I can't see this happening though, with the current skeleton development team the most recent regions are gorgeous, but hollow. You have your typical vendors, stable masters, and not much else. I don't mind waiting on new regions if they are fully fleshed out. Would love to go back to SoA style updates, IE Annuminas/Evendim.

    Underwhelming that there is no news of a 64 bit client, though I can appreciate the difficulty in creating one based off a client and code structure as old as this one.

    Elk mounts, meh.

    Not feeling optimistic about the quality of the Dwarf avatar updates. I love my dwarf right now, and by comparison, I really dislike the new Man avatars. Despite my best efforts my man characters (when update enabled) still look thuggish and heavy browed. Here's hoping dwarves and hobbits don't get the same treatment and end up looking like a cross between a bugan and troll.

    Looking forward to soaking up more of the Black Book of Mordor, I really enjoyed my first playthrough the content.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Denhith View Post
    Not a single mention...nothing at all about one of the biggest problems this game faces--performance.

    So it kind of makes the news about seeing Dale and the rest of Erebor, etc. fall pretty flat (imo)
    64-bit client wont help with lags at all. Major lags come from lags with server packets and server lagging response to world events. The game was designed in such a way that every move, every effect, everything, even you just turning around is controlled, approved and updated by server. To feel how slow server response is try to take and pass tasks quests at any Tasks board. No 64-bit client will help you.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowlock View Post
    Elk mounts.. No. The rest Yes!

    And the 64 bit client??????
    I second this -- Especially a 64-bit client for the Mac!
    Bill Magill Mac Player Founder/Lifetimer
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by MourneBlade View Post
    Great job SSG, really looking forward to next year and the new adventures that await!

    P.S. It is really sad that all the cry baby regulars on the forums had to post in this thread with all their boo-hoo's and BS just like they do in every other thread. Guess that post count # is their whole life.
    Seriously dude. Stop eating those SSG cookies they give the forum defenders and maybe you will be able to see the game has issues and the reason we complain is because we want those issues fixed. So tired of the blind defense of everything. Like I said in another thread.... You can eat steak with a spoon but why would you, of course if SSG supplied the spoon you would be on here saying it was the greatest spoon ever made and we should be proud to eat steak with it.
    I saw the light fade from the sky
    On the wind I heard a sigh
    As the snowflakes cover my fallen brothers
    I will say this last goodbye

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Valamar View Post
    I second this -- Especially a 64-bit client for the Mac!
    Mac is dead platform mate. If something even happens (doubtful at this point since wasn't even mentioned in producers letter), it will be for windows.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by TheGeekGirl View Post
    ...elk mounts. Cringe. Nobody rode elk in Middle Earth.
    No one in the books rode goats either. As a matter of fact, although of course the game is based on the books, and NOT on the movies, in the comparison of whether goats or elk should be allowed as mounts..... elks would have a point up to goats, because at the very least they were featured as Thranduil's mount of choice.

    In short, if we allow goats who aren't in the books OR movies, why no allow elks who aren't in the books, but ARE in the movies.

    The goats were invented by Turbine as a means to go around the "Moria is no place for horses" line in the books... They just looked at mines, how they operated in a pre-industrial area, and because goats were small, sturdy and strong they were often used to pull carts up through small passages. So, there, now we have goats.

    Bottom line is if you are against elk because nobody rode them in Middle Earth, you should also be against goats because no one rode them in Middle earth. Ever.
    Moved from Riddermark to Arkenstone on 9/29/2015!
    -----
    Disclaimer: The definition of "Soon™" is based solely on SSG's interpretation of the word, and all similarities with dictionary definitions of the word "Soon™" are purely coincidental and should not be interpreted as a time frame that will come to pass within a reasonable amount of time.

  15. #15
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    I loved everything in the letter except elk mounts...urgh.

    Quote Originally Posted by maartena View Post
    elks would have a point up to goats, because at the very least they were featured as Thranduil's mount of choice.
    I don't recall reading that in the books.

    Quote Originally Posted by maartena View Post
    In short, if we allow goats who aren't in the books OR movies, why no allow elks who aren't in the books, but ARE in the movies.
    If we allow goats and elks, why not war pigs and battle worms? It will no longer be Middle-earth. LOTRO should veer as far away as possible from The Hobbit movies.

    Quote Originally Posted by maartena View Post
    Bottom line is if you are against elk because nobody rode them in Middle Earth, you should also be against goats because no one rode them in Middle earth. Ever.
    I am firmly against both. I'd have preferred a mule to a goat.
    Last edited by Kenomica.; Nov 21 2017 at 06:49 PM.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Kenomica. View Post
    I loved everything in the letter except elk mounts...urgh.

    I don't recall reading that in the books.

    If we allow goats and elks, why not war pigs and battle worms? It will no longer be Middle-earth. LOTRO should veer as far away as possible from The Hobbit movies.

    I am firmly against both. I'd have preferred a mule to a goat.
    I loved this post and was going to give you kudos anyway, but - hey kinmate! Not surprised that your post was spot on
    Owner - Laurelin RP Group Discord server - https://discord.me/laurelinrp

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Kenomica. View Post
    I don't recall reading that in the books.
    If you read my entire post, you would have read that it wasn't in the books.

    In short:

    GOATS: Books: No - Movies: No.
    ELKS: Books: No - Movies: Yes.

    Of course the game is based on the books, NOT on the movies. But poetic freedom in the middle earth universe would give elks a lot more "street cred" than goats ever would.....

    If we allow goats and elks, why not war pigs and battle worms? It will no longer be Middle-earth. LOTRO should veer as far away as possible from The Hobbit movies.
    You do realize that most of the original game was actually completely made up by Turbine right? Forochel, Angmar... even most of Evendim.... all made up. Forochel wasn't even mentioned in any of the books.... Evendim only one passage if I recall, and Angmar only once or twice.... but they came up with full zones nonetheless by purely fantasizing it all up. Even Ered Luin isn't mentioned. The books take the path from the Shire to Bree to Rivendell quite quickly, a few chapters in and we're already forming the Fellowship.....

    Turbine just made up a world around key words they found in the books, but pretty much made up everything else. Goats included. So with long history of things made up and not in the books, I think an elk mount should be the least of your canon worries.....


    I am firmly against both. I'd have preferred a mule to a goat.
    There were no mules in Moria either. Or anywhere in the books. The only canon-compatible, if we may call it so, way of traveling in Moria.... is by foot.
    Moved from Riddermark to Arkenstone on 9/29/2015!
    -----
    Disclaimer: The definition of "Soon™" is based solely on SSG's interpretation of the word, and all similarities with dictionary definitions of the word "Soon™" are purely coincidental and should not be interpreted as a time frame that will come to pass within a reasonable amount of time.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by maartena View Post
    Of course the game is based on the books, NOT on the movies.
    That hasn't been the case since WB bought Turbine.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by maartena View Post
    You do realize that most of the original game was actually completely made up by Turbine right? Forochel, Angmar... even most of Evendim.... all made up. Forochel wasn't even mentioned in any of the books.... Evendim only one passage if I recall, and Angmar only once or twice.... but they came up with full zones nonetheless by purely fantasizing it all up. Even Ered Luin isn't mentioned. The books take the path from the Shire to Bree to Rivendell quite quickly, a few chapters in and we're already forming the Fellowship.....

    Turbine just made up a world around key words they found in the books, but pretty much made up everything else. Goats included. So with long history of things made up and not in the books, I think an elk mount should be the least of your canon worries.....
    Sorry but you are wrong. Surely, yes, there were many cases when developers used their own imagination to fill in, but a lot is taken from the Tolkien's writings also.

    We do find info on the areas you mentioned, for example, in The Appendices and The History of Middle-earth.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by maartena View Post
    If you read my entire post, you would have read that it wasn't in the books.

    In short:

    GOATS: Books: No - Movies: No.
    ELKS: Books: No - Movies: Yes.

    Of course the game is based on the books, NOT on the movies. But poetic freedom in the middle earth universe would give elks a lot more "street cred" than goats ever would.....



    You do realize that most of the original game was actually completely made up by Turbine right? Forochel, Angmar... even most of Evendim.... all made up. Forochel wasn't even mentioned in any of the books.... Evendim only one passage if I recall, and Angmar only once or twice.... but they came up with full zones nonetheless by purely fantasizing it all up. Even Ered Luin isn't mentioned. The books take the path from the Shire to Bree to Rivendell quite quickly, a few chapters in and we're already forming the Fellowship.....

    Turbine just made up a world around key words they found in the books, but pretty much made up everything else. Goats included. So with long history of things made up and not in the books, I think an elk mount should be the least of your canon worries.....




    There were no mules in Moria either. Or anywhere in the books. The only canon-compatible, if we may call it so, way of traveling in Moria.... is by foot.
    WAT?

    Do you not understand the difference between:

    - Develop, fill out and make whole a location that already exists in the lore as part of a central narrative, and

    - Making something up that has absolutely no coverage at all in the lore - such as adding something into the game solely for monetisation purposes.

    ?????

    Seems you don't.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by maartena View Post
    In short:

    GOATS: Books: No - Movies: No.
    ELKS: Books: No - Movies: Yes.
    Excuse me, but I really have to ask, have you actually seen the Hobbit movies?





    Quote Originally Posted by maartena View Post
    You do realize that most of the original game was actually completely made up by Turbine right? Forochel, Angmar... even most of Evendim.... all made up. Forochel wasn't even mentioned in any of the books.... Evendim only one passage if I recall, and Angmar only once or twice.... but they came up with full zones nonetheless by purely fantasizing it all up. Even Ered Luin isn't mentioned. The books take the path from the Shire to Bree to Rivendell quite quickly, a few chapters in and we're already forming the Fellowship.....

    Turbine just made up a world around key words they found in the books, but pretty much made up everything else. Goats included. So with long history of things made up and not in the books, I think an elk mount should be the least of your canon worries.....

    Excuse me, but I really have to ask, have you actually read the Lord of the Rings books?

    Evendim was a very important part of the story in the books, Anuminas was the original capitol of the Northern Kingdom and was there that Aragorn rebuilt the city and eventually settled. Angmar and Forochel were also very important to the story, and both regions had rich, if somewhat tainted, histories in Tolkien's legend. Forochel had a large part to play in the death of Arvedui, the last King of Arnor, and Angmar was of course largely the reason for the downfall of his Kingdom. Angmar is mentioned many times both in the body of the books as well as the appendices, while Forochel gets a far more than just a "mention". Ered Luin is mentioned many times, both in the LotR and the Hobbit, it was, after all, home to Thorin and the other dwarves for a considerable time.
    “If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went.”
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  22. #22
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    Couldn't agree more with all points.
    I'm sure it will not be implemented but I would love to have an option to turn off elk mounts the same as we can turn off cosmetic pets. Show a generic horse mount instead.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenomica. View Post
    I loved everything in the letter except elk mounts...urgh.



    I don't recall reading that in the books.



    If we allow goats and elks, why not war pigs and battle worms? It will no longer be Middle-earth. LOTRO should veer as far away as possible from The Hobbit movies.



    I am firmly against both. I'd have preferred a mule to a goat.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dunford View Post
    Couldn't agree more with all points.
    I'm sure it will not be implemented but I would love to have an option to turn off elk mounts the same as we can turn off cosmetic pets. Show a generic horse mount instead.
    I don't have a problem with the elk mount myself, but having this as an option would generate a lot of good will with many players.

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by TheGeekGirl View Post
    Some of these ideas are great and wonderful and amazing, and we the players THANK YOU for your continued dedication and hard work!

    However...

    ...elk mounts. Cringe. Nobody rode elk in Middle Earth.

    Also, people have been begging for a homestead in Rohan for a long, long time. PLEASE heed our begging, whining, and pleading.

    New hairstyles for avatars? Another thing people have been requesting since forever.

    How about fixing the boots that bleed through our leggings? The hair that bleeds through our hoods? The backpacks that bleed through chairs? Getting rid of the DESPISED "stand up and scratch/look around for no reason" tic?

    I know you're all about keeping existing players around and drawing new players in, and that requires constant new content. But please don't ignore the players who've stuck around for years and years and have such humble little requests to enrich the game we love so well.
    You use "we" and "our" A LOT but do not represent all players so just stop!!!!
    PLEASE heed MY begging, whining, and pleading and IGNORE this lie of a post!!!! ALL the items mentioned by this person our a WASTE of resources IN MY OPINION...

  25. #25
    And when do we get a REAL instance CLUSTER with more than 2 instances?

 

 
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