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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    26

    Letter from Executive Producer Rob Ciccolini

    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~

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Posts
    1,875
    Sorry folks, I had to delete the old thread due to a bizarre display issue that I was not able to correct. We did read your feedback prior to deleting the thread, though. Feel free to repost your thoughts if you would like.
    Community Manager, Lord of the Rings Online
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    coolcool

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    Update 23 will also increase the level cap to 120.
    So much for the whole 'no new level cap increase this year' bit >.<

  4. #4
    Please - say something about housing even if all you can say is that nothing new is expected soon.

    Was talk of Rohan housing just a Middle-Earth myth?

  5. #5
    new lvl cap sounds great for me!
    Xolla;Tishina\Arkenstone

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Freiburg
    Posts
    517
    The letter sounds great, except for the level cap increase. Please reconsider, there are already too many levels in this game....
    Déorwyn, Rank 12 Captain
    Lotro-Wiki: Tharondir

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Mostly Middle Earth
    Posts
    894
    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    Update 23 will also increase the level cap to 120.
    Guessing The Abyss will become yet another redundant raid then? or are you planning on scaling it?
    New gear (again) and new essences (again) - 6 upgrades within 12 months really isn't good.


  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    Greetings!Sev~
    Thank you for the update.

    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    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.
    I am always excited about getting new areas to explore. This sounds very exciting.

    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    Our new instances will be designed for both groups and solo players, allowing everyone to see the storyline that unfolds in those instances.
    AWESOME!!!!!!!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    Update 23 will also increase the level cap to 120.
    This makes me happy. It allows me to accomplish some of the older content that was not made for solo players in mind.


    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    Beyond Update 23,... landscape contiguity with Lothlórien.
    I like the sound of this!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    One of the longer-term requests we have heard from you is a desire to take a holistic look at our ten classes.
    I have been pretty happy with most of the classes I have played so far. So I assume much of these chances are for grouped content and perhaps the Ettenmoors. Just keep solo players in mind so that we don't struggle too much after the updates. I am certainly not a great player, but I have struggled with a couple of my secondary characters as they got into higher areas (like Mordor). My Rune Keeper for instance. I dread how my Lore Master will perform when he ges that high. He struggles now. I love my Hunter at the moment though, especially as he can run around and fire at the same time. Mordor was tough at times until I got light armour, but he seems pretty good. I think many of my struggles though stem from poor legendary items.

    Keep up the great work!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Hithlum
    Posts
    1,064
    Êl síla erin lû e-govaned vîn!

    Le suilon! Sincerely, Twas a pleasure reading! Thanks kindly for the letter! ;}

    I was the witness live when it was stated There "wont be no Level cap" One must be ready for unexpected changes, The Tables will turn. I am not surprised. The level cap is inevitable, sooner or later. Braced against the complaining , It already started.

    Tis why acquisition of wealth or gearing up the alternative characters should be your primary focus,concern or immense work, which is actually massive amount of work, but then after months of ardours tasks and effort, a cap increase comes and one "must" re-grind the entire process.

    I for instance do not bother anymore, I was warping up and processing the amount of gold,time and energy needed to maximize everything on multiple characters....Incredible non stop daily commitment.

    ~ More love for Bears!
    ~ Mount Gundabad! My prediction for a new Raid!
    ~ Time stands still at the Iron hill! Iron Hills&Grey Mountains! The Naugrim shall be pleased! A reminder! Moria Launch, Memories of the Ages Past, when Dwarves finally found their home!
    ~ Always thrilled for Epic return within the Depths of Nûrz Ghâshu! The Thrang was my second favourite boss! I shall face the fire or Embrace the death once again!

    ~ By Vana,Orome and High Ones of Arda! Excited! Yes! Not so much for the Festivals , but to witness the beauties ,tales ,sorrows,terrors and legends of the new regions!

    *Under Fire*

    Minas Morgul! Elves! Naugrim! Mr. Ciccolini! Cheers! NEW regions! AMG! The Expansion of Arda!



    ~ Morgul Vale! Minas Morgul! "Carn Dum 2.0"? Grand plans,Hm. I do wonder will you keep the current Appearance of the Tower of the Dread Sorcery? Tis Gigantic! I would love to
    Vanyalanthiriel Vanimelda ~ The Radiant Star Queen of Calacyira ~The Flame Imperishable Greatest of all time for Ages&Arda beyond.
    The Ascended Mastery.Beyond comprehension Tier level of Greatness ~ Super Genius. Read my Biography.

  10. #10
    My OCD mind is happy to hear we'll have a level cap ending in a 0 again. These x5 level caps always seem incomplete to me.

    I'm also happy about the location of U23, because I'd much rather explore these northern regions than go back to Mordor.
    Spam Egg Sausage And Spam of Gladden (formerly Silverlode)
    Theozor Viazald CPT 109 | Brau Steinmeister GRD 115 | Bindore HNT 106

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Czech republic
    Posts
    272
    More priority to end-game instances please

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    307
    Please, reconsider increasing the level cap. Or if you're really set to it, increase all the requirements needed to cap out the stats on the said level substantially.

    Hopefully, new content will have more ways of earning alt-related mats for LIs, like scrolls and crystals...

  13. #13
    I really appreciate the communication and the fact that you are telling us your mapping of the future. The only bit I worry about is the level cap so fast when most of us haven't even gotten challenge done in the new raid. One of the downfalls of the new "gaming," standard is increasing cap often, I see as a ploy to generate more revenue through upgrades. Although this could be good for a company it burns players out who are always chasing the next "upgrade," to stay relevant in the raiding community without given the chance to enjoy their conquest and having the "best," gear for a while. These essences have been a pain replacing three sets every so often while needing to purchase removal scrolls etc. It will get to a point i fear when its just not worth it because the cost to keep up is just greater than the enjoyment you get from it. I will of course give you guys the benefit of the doubt and I'm excited to see the new areas as they are revealed.

  14. #14
    With the statbloat that came with all Mordor-Updates that all made nearly all top-equipment of the very last update irrelevant and northern mirkwood going even higher in itemlevels, a raise in levelcap had to come sooner or later. I totally welcome it.
    Please dont repeat the same mistake with itemization at lvl120 and finally dont allow us to cap all relevant stats months after release. Actually, I'd prefer if we can only cap two relevant stats with u24 if we totally go for that, which means completely ignoring other stats.
    One should not be able to cap mastery, crit, finesse (sure, there is no cap, but everyone knows what I mean) and both mitigations at the same time.
    So please, please, just dont give us too good equipment so fast again. Essence-wise, lvl115 was clearly the best Endgame since essences exist. Maybe tone the number even a bit more down for 120, but keeping the amount of slots would be okay, too. All we need now with essences is the ability to overwrite essences. If you inspect random players, you find so many that have no essences slotted, just because they dont want to use reclamation scrolls and therefore wait for perfect essences availability before slotting anything. Upgrading should be possible without reclamation scrolls. And maybe, there should even be a standard of green essences in equipment when one gets it.

    Class work and levelcap rise... totally awesome what you do with the game. I might sub for a month after release of u23, if the loca is not a complete mess like for u22. I'll accept 20 obvious text mistakes in the german client on release, if its less, you'll have a new subscriber
    So please: quality over quantity if you want my money (I dont care about the release date at all).
    Diskutierer, Fragenbeantworter, Twinker, Händler, Handwerker und Anführer der 'Gemeinschaft der freien Völker' auf Belegaer.
    Deutsche Guides für nahezu alles, was Casuals interessieren könnte, gibts hier: http://gdfv.forumo.de/guides-f24/

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    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.
    Been waiting to hear this for a while, good to see it's being prioritised now. However with class balance in mind I can see a slight problem with the following:

    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    Update 23 will also increase the level cap to 120.
    Presuming you are going to retain the current trait point every 3 levels model this new cap will up the maximum trait point limit to 91 (new point at 117 and 120). We're already dangerously close to being able to grab the capstones from two trees, a total trait point total of 91 is 2 points away from achieving that. As such I would really like to see a trait point cap put in place or some trait tree restructuring to allow for an additional level on the current trait trees.
    ~ I tank with a Beorning, my opinion is invalid. ~

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    2,193
    From a landscape perspective, I'm super excited for the rest of this year - Iron Hills and Grey Mountains before moving west to Gundabad, the Vales of Anduin (please can we finally have an interior for Grimbeorn's Lodge and connections to the Misty Mountains/Goblin town? Isn't Framburg also in this area?) and linking up to Lothlorien (Gladden Fields, possibly Rhosgobel?). I like the idea of pushing Minas Morgul back until this region is properly sorted and connected up, but it does make me a little concerned that Minas Morgul might never arrive!

    The other thing I'm excited about is solo versions of fellowship instances. I wish I wasn't I had more time to play the game than I do, but given my limited time span for playing which makes grouping very difficult to fit it, I really appreciate the fact that you are letting solo players access the story of these instances. Can I ask that this extends to the new raid too? I've not been able to complete Throne/Abyss and so have had to glean the story of those instances from other players, but it's not quite the same.

    All in all, it looks pretty exciting, so thank you for your ongoing work!
    - Taravan, R12 Captain - Tirian, Tanking Guardian - Telperon, Completionist LM -
    - Afranius, R9 WL - Tolobain, R7 Weaver - Vargan, R6 Stalker -

    Ex-Leader of Lost Realm of Imladris - Evernight - Co-Founder of Beauty and the Beasts

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Middle Earth, Arda
    Posts
    5,290

    Post

    Quote Originally Posted by Cordovan View Post
    Sorry folks, I had to delete the old thread due to a bizarre display issue that I was not able to correct. We did read your feedback prior to deleting the thread, though. Feel free to repost your thoughts if you would like.
    Big thanks about the cosmetic instruments. I hope that the quality of life include something about housing.

    ...& you really should put crafted gear guild recipes again on the higher levels as you did on the lower levels. Not everybody is a raider so crafters also deserve descent gear after spending so much time raising the proffesions. It is too hard to do the new raids & even the landscape quest without guild crafted gear.

    ~ Check my Kinship at Gladden server: The Fate of Middle Earth ~

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    159

    Hold my beer for speculation, but....

    I'm calling it here: Minas Morgul's gonna be part of an expansion. Instead of a quest pack, it's gonna come with Nurn as well, with Shelob's tunnels now including an exit to the place, besides the obvious landscape entrance.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Bree
    Posts
    39
    Quote Originally Posted by Siddharta View Post
    new lvl cap sounds great for me!
    Well, maybe. As a design-element, I usually prefer games where you're always on-level with the landscape mobs. Ignoring grey mobs, or worse deeding on grey mobs, is boring and not fun. Admittedly, this is probably unworkable in an continuous landscape like LOTRO's. In any case. I think I'd rather stop leveling and put the brakes on the stat-bloat. I think just having a gear-level increase with each expansion, and maybe bump the level-cap only very rarely if at all, is a better way to design things, but I guess that most players disagree with me. In any case, I'm afraid that ship sailed to Valinor a long, long, time ago. So here's to level 120 and beyond.
    “Beware of he who would deny you access to information, for in his heart he dreams himself your master.”

    ? Pravin Lal

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    (including, in a near update, the ability to see sheathed musical instruments).
    Wonderful!

    In that light.... While you're at it (if time allows) for the love of Eru, please fix how sheathed one-handed weapons rest on the hips. Get rid of the 45 degree angle on hip-sheathed weapons.

    Regardless of the fact that a 45 degree angle is unrealistic and makes the weapon visibly weightless, the additional fact that hammers and axes are at their rest position upside-down is a problem. No matter how they are hooked at a person's waist/hip, the difference in weight between the handle and head of the axe/hammer will make them fall to the ground. They should be resting straight-up with the handles pointing down and the hammer/axe-heads at or just below the hip.

    As well, allow swords and daggers to hang straight down.

    And take a look at how two-handed hammers and axes rest, as well - they should not be upside down on the back. The head of the hammer/axe should be up be the shoulder - same with halberds. These three currently suffer from the same weight distribution problem as the one-handed axes and hammers.
    "The greatest defeat is the day your enemies no longer fear you," said Rumar.
    "I do not think that will be a problem," replied Zume.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    363
    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    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.
    This sounds fantastic! The Lonely Mountains, Iron Hills and the Grey Mountains. Definitely looking forward to this.

    Thanks SSG and Community! /Cheers
    “It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out of your door. You step into the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.”

    ~ Bilbo Baggins * J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    2,041
    Quote Originally Posted by Severlin View Post
    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.
    I like it a lot, thanks!

    Sergio :-)
    Moved from Riddermark to Landroval on 2/10/1015!

  23. #23
    I'm always excited to hear about upcoming additions to the game. New landscapes are always the most exciting to me, so thank you for those. More Dwarf areas are especially exciting to me. Be sure to give us the Dwarf holds in the White Mountains someday!

    I'm also excited about the level cap increase. Will we see an increase to the virtue cap along with it? I hope so. They are already behind the original progression of 1 per 5 levels. You guys should really just change the cap to be a function of the level cap so you never have to manually raise it again. Each time the level cap increases, the virtue cap will increase automatically. Or, if you really want to get crazy, my preferred method would be to make the virtue cap a function of a player's level rather than of the level cap. That way as a player is leveling, their virtue cap will automatically go up by one for every 5 levels they gain.

    I'm glad that the Black Book will be continued in the update. There was no mention of Allegiances. When can we expect their stories to continue?

  24. #24
    Is there any update on the plans to move the client to 64bit?

    It's been discussed off and on, but it seems like it's kind of gone to the way side. While I like hearing about all the new stuff, I feel there is some technical debt that really needs to be focused on such as this. People I raid with often are having to restart their client because they can tell that their client is about to crash. I deal with textures in certain instances aren't loading(Seregost).

    And beyond the technical debt, there is also the case where MacOS will be cutting off 32bit applications in the next major release. I really hope I do not have to delay updating to the new version just for LOTRO.

  25. #25
    1) Balancing classes is great - Give wardens 1/2 defense cooldown skills or provide better legacies for tanking such as providing them mitigation in legacies or gear set to provide vitality. Give RK back more healing potential as well.

    2) New content is great

    3) Please in new raid do not add a DPS timer or make it the reason for challenge vs not challenge - give us more heavy mechanics or make the DPS race portions not be the entirety of the fight but rather a portion of the fight. Mechanics like tree sap from OD, Rift Balrog fight splitting groups for wheels in back, and Overseer in back room are fond memories. Bring back tokens for gear, and don't let it be BoA. Make us have to actually learn/master our classes to gear out a class to play.

    4) With class balances and the extra 5 levels, please take into consideration freep vs freep opportunities. An arena for 3v3 - 6v6 - 12v12 that provides titles, cosmetics, etc and gives people who want to test compositions a fun way to do that. And brings an edge to those that want to PvMP. Make the moors F2P accessible so we have more PvMP action as well please. Or give incentive such as quests that provide end-game resources such as scrolls/etc. based on PvP in the moors (ex: killing 10 creeps = 1 scroll of empowerment), defeating a rank 5+ = 1 scroll, r10+ = 1 crysal, r15 = imbue scroll). Or owning keeps provides free coins, etc. REMOVE AUTOFLIPS

    5) The more raids the better, the challenging the better, just please make sure there are not exploits for them such as Boss 2 AoM. So many people do not deserve gear from AoM clear because of how Sagrog or Fingar where farmed. It is a disgrace to real raiders that such easy exploits have been manipulated.

 

 
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