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.
Ravenloft is only a part of DDO’s grand plans for the year. Ciccolini said that the fun will begin with Update 34 (which contains a new dungeon and the reaper difficulty level), the game’s 11th anniversary event, Update 35 (which will add the playable Dragonborn race), and Update 36 (which will return to the Forgotten Realms). The expansion and a further update will wrap up the team’s plans for 2017.
We spoke with Ciccolini and the team at Standing Stone Games this week about DDO and the studio transition. Standing Stone said that the Ravenloft expansion “could include new playable race or races as well.”
While Standing Stone has been communicative over the past month, we wanted to dig deeper into the decision to form the new studio, its relationship with Daybreak, and plans for both DDO and LOTRO going forward. To wit, we sat down with Standing Stone Executive Producer Rob “Severlin” Ciccolini, Lead Designer Ben “DrOctothorpe” Schneider, and Community Manager Jerry “Cordovan” Snook to discuss this major transition and its possible impact for these two MMO game worlds.
“We are currently hard at work on Update 19, titled the March of the King,” Executive Producer Rob “Severlin” Ciccolini reveals. “Our plan is to release the update in October. Update 19 will feature The Last Debate, along with the Host of the West and its March through North Ithilien, the debut of new premium housing on the Cape of Belfalas, a return to landscape questing, and a new rotation of featured instances. North Ithilien was once known for its gardens, and some called it the prettiest area of Gondor. That beauty remains even in the presence of the enemy. The overgrown and wild area still has many plants and flowers that are not found elsewhere in Middle Earth, and players can gather the flora found there to barter for rewards that will remain useful into 2017. We look forward to telling you more about Update 19 in the coming weeks!”
Yes, premium housing is happening. Expect “vastly more hook points, the ability to own multiple houses, a fully revised housing UI” and support for classic housing too.