Standing Stone defends LOTRO lootbox plans

Pretty cheesed off over Lord of the Rings Online’s plans to stuff best-in-slot gear into lootboxes with the upcoming instance cluster? Don’t hold your breath waiting for Standing Stone Games to back down.

The studio posted a couple of responses to the furor over the decision, basically justifying the move and indicating that no changes would be made. Executive Producer Robert Ciccolini posted this yesterday:

Our goal is that you can earn — while playing the game — all statistical bonuses that you can get from lootboxes. In the case of the vendor rings, they will also have a chance to drop in the upcoming raid. That drop can also upgrade, so upgraded rings will be possible to obtain in game. We realize that having a short period where they are in the lootboxes before the raid is available is not ideal, but players will be able to get upgraded rings in game. If players find other statistical bonuses in lootboxes that cannot be duplicated in game they should definitely bring them here.

Edit: One point of clarification; there are upgraded items in the raid that are better than anything a player can get with a lootbox.

Responding to a player who asked why such loot should be included in LOTRO’s version of lockboxes, Ciccolini answered today, “So players that prefer the solo and small group end game can obtain loot, in addition to or instead of raiding. The lootboxes are an in-game system that rewards loot to people who participate in various end game activities. It also allows raiders to supplement their loot drops by doing some of the solo and end game content, so they don’t feel that there is no reason to revisit that once they start doing group activities.”

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69 Comments on "Standing Stone defends LOTRO lootbox plans"

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GanonslayerCP .

the company wants money, they are doing this, you will either stop playing or keep playing

hint: you don’t play probably and if you do you aren’t stopping

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Crowe

Canceled my sub: done. I’ll give this time some to sink in before I decide to uninstall.

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Coolit

Lockboxes are scummy at the best of times, lockboxes with raid gear is P2W.

cambruin
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cambruin

They have abused the term”convenience” for so long now, so I don’t understand the sudden fuss. Raid gear via lootboxes is pay-to-win!! Uh, yes, it is. Your point? They can’t do that!! And selling potions which were on a seperate cooldown from regular potions gained through gameplay was not pay to win? That was ok, but this is not?
Just for the record, neither is okay, but if you were fine with one, why not with the other?

Turbine had already crossed some lines, seems SSG is even worse. And for a moment I thought this was the core of the development team, the ones with a true passion for Middle Earth. How wrong I was.

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Melissa McDonald

The game is desperate to make money, I understand that. I don’t fault them for doing what so many other games have done.

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Paragon Lost

I hate loot boxes, hate them. I’d rather save up some item currency and then buy the gear with said item currency, so that I get exactly what I want. I’ve opened over 30 Gorgoroth loot boxes so far and I’m starting to get really pissed off about the whole thing. Nice work SSG alienating a whale player, I’ve spent over a grand in the last six months on LotRO and I’ve decided to hit the brakes on my spending because loot boxes suck ass.

Also making all the gear from random drops in Mordor being character bound sucks soo much. Gear that I can’t even use on that character, just pisses me off to no end. Specially as someone who plays every character class and would love to send those random items that the character can’t use to one of them.

Sure, I can use the crystal to break them down into ashes or I could sell them as vendor trash, but it’s bullshit to drop the stuff and not allow me to sell it, trade it or give it to one of my alts. Really nice blue bow was a random drop the other that my 115th champion could have used but nope, it was bound to my rune keeper. (shakes head)

Way to alienate all types of players of your game SSG. I’m starting to understand the mindset of the players who go out of their way to avoid spending any money in an mmorpg.

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Vincent Clark

This is one of the reasons why I favor a sub only game (i.e. FFXIV). You won’t see this lack of integrity involved with game development in that–or any other game–that is sub only (WoW, etc.) It’s a shame that the LotRO player base isn’t big/supportive enough to make a sub only business model viable.

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Paragon Lost

Strongly agree. I”ve been beating the subscription only business model drum for far too many years as the best overall business model for mmorpgs. The other business models in my opinion impact the game, the developers and players in a negative way.

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Paragon Lost

Good read and he lists some of the impacts well. The other half of the rotten fruit that is F2P is that the developers now have to come up with ways to monetize every aspect that they can in order to gain that cash inflow. Doing so in a way that will get players to repeatedly buy certain items.

The whole design of the mmorpg changes when you toss aside the subscription model for the F2P model. Instead of designing an mmorpg that players will immerse themselves in and play month in and month out you end up designing the mmorpg in order to get the player to buy things in order for you the game developer to stay in business from month to month. Ugh, vicious, ugly cycle.

Anyhow thanks for sharing the article, I hadn’t read that one. He totally gets it, kudos to him.

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Shiro Madoushi

The only way to be rid of lootboxes/rng/gambling is through legislation. Write to your conservative Senators and Representatives.

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Paragon Lost

You forgot your /s there. Since anyone who actually keeps track of politics and policy knows that mostly what conservative elected officials do is actually deregulate. Adding more restrictions and regulation on corporations is exactly not what they do.

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roo woods

Doesn’t bother me in a predominantly pve game at all . If there was world pvp all over the game then it would be a different matter .

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Nathan Aldana

“its okay guys, you just have to play the content most people will never see to exceed the power of lockbox gear”

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Michael18

Of course I’m not happy to see BiS gear in gamble boxes. But at this point, I’m just glad there is one last live MMO left that sticks to the style of story-telling and world building I like in MMOs. Otherwise I’d have to rely entirely on emus.

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draugris

Well developers implementing pay to win will always find an excuse why it is not horrible. They don´t do it with the solo player in mind, they don´t do it so that raiders can supplement their way to get gear. They do it to squeeze out money from the player with absolutely no development effort.