Lord of the Rings Online explains the Allegiance system in Mordor

We’re probably not going to blow your mind by saying this, but here it is anyway: Mordor in Lord of the Rings Online is not a friendly place. You’re shocked, obviously. But the point is that you’ll need to have some allies to deal with the problems of that land, and those allies need to know you’re their ally. Hence, the upcoming Allegiances system, a chance for players to improve reputation and standing with one of four factions for cosmetic rewards and unique storylines.

It’s important to note that the four factions (the Hobbits of the Company, Durin’s Folk, the Court of Lothlorien, and the Kingdom of Gondor) will not affect your access to endgame gear, even though the Allegiance system will be tied into the endgame. But your choice is mostly between the four stories you wish to follow and which cosmetic gear you want to access first. Still, much like Merry and Pippin’s oaths of service (which formed the initial concept for this system), it’s going to be important from a narrative standpoint to consider whom your character will bend a knee for.


LOTRO’s new allegiance system will take you to fantastic places

One of the new major systems that’s coming with Lord of the Rings Online: Mordor deals with your pledged allegiance to certain Middle-earth factions. Players will choose between four races to dedicate their Mordor adventures, opening up a special headquarters and unlocking rewards over time.

Allegiance can be pledged to the Court of Celeborn (Elves), Hall of the King (Man), Erebor (Dwarves), or Bar Thorenion (Hobbits). As players progress in their allegiances, they will open up a special quest line. “Allegiances do have you filling up a bar, and there are repeatable quests and rewards, but for me the significant addition is that each of them tells a continuing story,” said developer MadeOfLions on the forums.

Get an early look at all four class halls allegiance halls after the break!

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LOTRO expands its Mordor FAQ with more pre-order info

One of the qualms that players have expressed over the new Lord of the Rings Online: Mordor pre-order package is a lack of clarity over some of the more expensive edition offerings. It appears that the developers have been listening in part to these complaints, because the official Mordor FAQ was expanded early this week to elaborate on some of the extras.

The explanations covered the new Mordor runes, a creepy teleporting door that you can put inside your house to take you to the land of shadow, how the XP bonus item works, and pictures of the adorable kites that you will no doubt be flying as you vacation in Sauron’s back yard.

Now that you’re armed with more information, will you be dropping upwards of $130 on the expansion or going with the basic package? While you’re mulling that over, check out YouTuber Andang’s new character model update video after the break.

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LOTRO’s new light and shadow system looks a lot like the old radiance system

One of Lord of the Rings Online’s more infamous systems was radiance, which heavily penalized players’ stats in certain dungeons unless they had specific gear to counter those negative effects. The near-universal dislike of radiance gear led to its removal and the developers admitting that it didn’t work out so well.

So why bring up radiance today? Because it might be making a comeback in the game under a different name. Dadi’s LOTRO Guides explains one of the new systems coming to the Mordor expansion seems suspiciously similar to the whole radiance concept, except that instead of being limited to dungeons, this will be found on the landscape.

The light and shadow system puts a meter on the UI that shows how much the players are suffering from the Shadow of Mordor. Areas with a higher shadow rating will penalize players’ incoming healing, outgoing damage, and increase the damage of enemy attacks. These shadow effects can be countered by accumulating gear that stacks Light of Eärendil to push back the meter.


LOTRO tests Mordor’s improved character models and allegiance system

The third public preview test of Lord of the Rings Online: Mordor arrived yesterday, further expanding the beta of the upcoming expansion. New this time around is the first glimpse of the new human avatar visual updates, the allegiance system (albeit without many of the quests and rewards), and a few tweaks to the High Elves’ hairstyle. They’re vain, get over it.

“Early elements of the avatar update can be seen in this build on human models,” the devs said. “You will note a toggle in the character generation UI that allows you to see the original or updated appearance for each option.”

As with all of Mordor’s tests so far, the Bullroarer server is open to anyone who wants to create a copy of their characters and give the new content a whirl.

Source: Patch notes


LOTRO Legendarium: Simply walking into Mordor

It has been a whirlwind week of news and reveals for Lord of the Rings Online players. Standing Stone Games finally pulled back the curtains of the new expansion, simply titled Mordor — and to make things even more exciting, the first beta test of the region went up on Bullroarer to give players a hands-on preview.

Unlike some other writers here on staff, I do not like playing betas and going through new content before it goes live for real, so I will not be participating on Bullroarer (I’d prefer my first time to be for keeps!). However, that doesn’t mean I’m avoiding the news or the previews! There’s so much to take in and digest, so this week I want to thumb through the reveals and preview videos to share some of my reactions to what we’ll be seeing when LOTRO: Mordor comes out later this summer.

Whether you walk, ride, or hobble (you took fall damage, didn’t you?) into Mordor, the important thing is that we are all going there in 2018. So what will we find?

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Take your first gander at LOTRO’s High Elves

Over on the Bullroarer test server, Lord of the Rings Online has welcomed its latest race to the game. High Elves are now available for players to preview, although it remains to be seen if this race is cosmetically and functionally different from the current Elves to be justified as an inclusion.

LOTRO Players posted its initial impressions of the race, which will be able to roll every class except for Beornings and Burglars. High Elves look slightly different (particularly their hair) and have several useful racial skills, such as a revive and an out-of-combat run speed boost.

The premium race also boasts a new introduction, with the High Elves fighting as part of the First Alliance way back in the Second Age. An untimely wound by a Nazgul blade results in the player character being taken to Rivendell for a long period of recuperation, leading to the present era.

Check out the High Elf character creator after the break, and stay tuned for our LOTRO Legendarium column later today!

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LOTRO kicks off summer festival, talks Mordor class balance and testing

Break out the beer kegs and fishing poles, Lord of the Rings Online’s summer festival is back! The festival, which will run through July 16th, offers keg races, Hobbit eating contests, horse races, fishing challenges, scavenger hunts, and of course, dancing.

Looking past the summer festival to Mordor, one developer took to the forums to address a class balance and testing pitfalls for the expansion.

“Class balance is definitely something we want to address in coming updates. It’s a mess in several places and we know it,” Vastin wrote. “Once the new ratings, gearing, and monster statting values settle down that should give us an excellent stepping off point for updating class balance. Unfortunately, there simply isn’t enough time and testing resources to make that happen before Mordor launches. Most of those changes will have to happen during the course of our time in Mordor.”


Lord of the Rings Online: Mordor reveals key expansion details

The cat is out of the bag, and this year’s Lord of the Rings Online expansion into the long-awaited country of Mordor is going to be called… Mordor. Let that sink in for a minute.

The Standing Stone Games team devoted an hour-long livestream to unveiling key details (but not everything!) about this summer’s expansion, including the following:

  • Mordor will add five regions to the game and increase the level cap by 10 to 115. Crafting will also be increased to 115 and the virtue cap will increase to 20.
  • The expansion is “not going to be easy” but “not discouragingly difficult.” Stay on the main path for easier going!
  • An “ashes” barter system will allow you to buy gear upgrades that haven’t dropped for you yet, curbing RNG frustration.
  • High Elves will have their own starting area and be able to roll every class except Burglar and Beorning. They’ll also have their own racial traits and skills.
  • The allegiance system allows you to pledge your efforts to a race and earn special rewards (including cosmetics). You can work on more than one allegiance, although they get progressively harder the more you do.
  • Legendary items will get new relics and additional legacy tiers.
  • Barbershops will now allow you to modify all of your character’s visual details (but you can’t change your race).
  • The anticipated avatar revamp is going to start with Man and Elves.
  • The expansion will also take players to Erebor (The Hobbit’s Lonely Mountain) for the first time.

You can watch it for the full scoop below!

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LOTRO to reveal Mordor expansion and start beta testing this week

By the week’s end, Lord of the Rings Online players should know a lot more about the game’s coming Mordor expansion — and even have an opportunity to play it.

In an interview yesterday with Dadi’s LOTRO Guides, CM Jerry “Cordovan” Snook said that the team is preparing a big reveal today for the expansion that should include the name and some key details. Additionally, the first beta preview is set to go live on the Bullroarer test server by this weekend. This test won’t be the full expansion, as the team wants to hold back the epic story and some other major content as to not spoil surprises.

Snook confirmed that there will be a level cap increase with Mordor (although he wouldn’t say what it is) and that the virtue cap will increase by one. The expansion is still on track for release in late summer 2017, with a follow-up patch that will add in group content (such as the new raid).

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LOTRO confirms a multi-boss raid for its Mordor expansion

When it comes to Mordor, is there any zone better suited to large, epic endgame fights? Yet when Lord of the Rings Online players head into the expansion this fall, Sauron will already be toppled. So does that mean that evil will be vanquished?

Not by a long shot, it appears. On its 10th anniversary livestream, Standing Stone Games confirmed that it is working on a raid for the expansion that will come out some time down the road.

“We are planning on having a raid, a multi-boss raid that comes out following the initial release of the Mordor expansion. We’re going to hold it back a bit as to not have people racing to endgame content,” Standing Stone said. “It will be in a place called the Abyss of Mordath.”

Check out the raid reveal for yourself after the break!

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LOTRO Legendarium: 10th anniversary interview with Standing Stone’s Rob Ciccolini

As Lord of the Rings Online players revel in the varied activities of this year’s 10th anniversary celebration, the crew at the newly formed Standing Stone Games has a huge task ahead of them: To capitalize upon this monumental milestone and prepare to shuttle players into the “endgame” of the books.

We had the opportunity to sit down with Executive Producer Rob Ciccolini to talk abut the anniversary, its hiccups, and upcoming Mordor expansion. As the page turns on a new chapter of both the game and its development team, it truly feels like we’re about to venture into the unknown in more ways than one.

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LOTRO’s Mordor expansion will take place after the destruction of the One Ring

When Lord of the Rings Online players finally step foot into the dreaded land of Mordor this summer, they will make one shocking discovery: The One Ring will already be destroyed.

In an interview with MMO-Central, Standing Stone discussed how it made more sense for players’ adventures in Mordor to be set in the footsteps of Frodo and Sam instead of at the same time. But don’t worry, the studio assured fans, there will still be a “tremendous pit of evil” with which to contend and that players will see the penultimate moment of the ring’s destruction (session play perhaps?).

“The reason that we can enter Mordor and not interfere with Frodo and Sam’s mission is because the majority of the Mordor expansion is going to take place after they’ve already gotten to Mount Doom. It would not be appropriate, I don’t think, for adventurers to be gallivanting in Mordor concurrent with Frodo and Sam doing their thing,” Jeff Libby said. “Fairly early on in the expansion, I think you’ll see that things get sorted out in a way, and then Mordor is our oyster.”

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