LOTRO: Mordor is still aiming for a July 31 release

    
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Swanky.
Lord of the Rings Online players are on pins and needles this week, wondering if they only have a few days before the expansion or if Standing Stone Games will exercise its option to delay Mordor by up to a month. According to a dev post on the forums yesterday, the target date of July 31st is still a go for launch.

“We typically don’t say more than what we already have until after we hold a meeting to confirm everything is set, and then confirm it by posting the downtime notice,” posted the studio about a release date announcement. “That said, it was included in the pre-purchase page, and at this time at least we have no indication it will not happen then. So, we’re still on track for the 31st.”

Meanwhile, SSG was happy to talk about the new High Elf race (which is not being included in the base Mordor edition but can only be acquired by purchasing a more expensive bundle or waiting until winter when it goes on sale in the store).

The biggest difference between the High Elves and other races sounds like it has to do with their stances and animations. “The running and jumping animations for our High Elves are light when compared to the other races in our game. Gravity seems to affect them less,” wrote Senior Animator Robert Tighe. “We created some unique skill animations that were graceful and flashy; we limited the amount these play so as not to distract from gameplay.”

The studio also interviewed Ted Nasmith, the artist who has created two amazing update wallpapers for the game this year, including one for Mordor. He said that he tried hard to tap into both the world and players’ journeys: “I wanted both of these works to reflect both the dynamic ‘in-motion’ experience of the online version of the books in game format, while focusing also on the aesthetic beauty and intricately designed ‘sets’ players’ experience.”

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odin valhalla

As an former long time player ( a game 10 years old you can say that) whats most interesting to me is the community reaction. SSG lifted the veil and revealed that the elephant in the room all those years for curious decisions, was actually not even present. What I mean is, for YEARS lotro players had the perfect foil “WB corp greed” or however you phrased it. It was a pefect out for everyone to explain bad decisions all around.

Come to find out, per SSG WB allowed Turbine to pretty much run the show with minimal oversight. Not only that, but when SSG happened they were crowing pretty loudly about how the core of the SSG were people that had been at Turbine working on LOTRO all along.

So this is the point of interest. All the crap decisions by Turbine, from mannequins to mounted combat to monetization to disaster expansions (disaster meaning the lead up to release and the bugfest after) come to find out was not dictated by WB. That in fact the people that made those decisions are now and always were at the heart of the LOTRO game.

What were you expecting here? Every shortcoming of this expansion is completely understandable given the history. If you didnt know the history fine but thats on you. This game has been around a long time, the webs are filled with documentation on how Turbine does things. I mean they even have their own entry into the urban dictionary.

Its still a great story, and being able to hang in there for 10 years is saying something. Here’s hoping things are better for all those still playing. I remember coming back briefly to check out minas tirith, I was in tolkien nerd heaven, then repeated CTD, turbined….

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Paragon Lost

I finally made it to Minas Tirith, was pretty awesome to see. My only big complaint is that I’d never had problems with game crashing until I hit Minas Tirith. I have a good internet connection with low lost data packets, low ping and a high end computer (5k spend on it three years ago).

I crashed out of Minas Tirith so many times this week since getting there that I lost track and couldn’t wait to leave just so the game would go back to being stable. :/ Once I left, (knock on wood) I’ve not had a crash.

Just wanted to comment on that because it irked to have game crashes when I’d not really ever had that issue in LotRO during the last ten years off and on that I’ve played. Anyhow great post and you covered many things that have left a bad taste in my mouth over the years.

I will say that I did buy the fan edition to help support them now that they’re an independent entity, but all that stuff that you mention was sitting in the back of my mind while I did the purchase, a slowly spreading rot like the heart of the problems in Greenwood the Great.

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Tobasco da Gama

Yeah, MT really stresses the memory limits of the engine to its capacity. I hope there is a 64-bit upgrade eventually, because that should substantially improve stability in a lot of zones.

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Paragon Lost

Man would I love to see an overhaul of the engine to a 64 bit true multi-core support and better optimization for gpu usage. One can dream, the world is just still so beautifully painted even by today’s standards.

There are just many times that you can tell that for many who work/worked on the game that it was indeed a labor of love. I think that’s what brings me back every time even with all the shortcomings and issues Odin Valhalla mentions.

stege99
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stege99

“So, we’re still on track for the 31st.”
Question is, which 31st? ;-)

Personally I’m gonna wait until you can get the expansion and High Elf with LP.
SSG’s marketing guys unfortunately has their reality set at least a decade back in time.
Look around you what the competition currently are offering guys.

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ogged451

Competing with SWL’s Steam launch ? Now that’s optimistic ! (j/k)

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Roger Melly

That was several weeks ago now .

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Tobasco da Gama

SWL isn’t on Steam until the 31st.

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Viktor Budusov

Great! Can’t wait.

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BalsBigBrother

Funny how things change over time.

When Mordor was announced I was incredibly excited for it to the point that I subbed for the rest of the year in anticipation. While I have enjoyed the time I have spent in the Lotro I am still mulling over if I want to actually get the expansion on release or just wait till I can buy it with my accumulated points.

Looking at the expansion packages I just feel like I am being only seen as a wallet rather than an actual person who enjoys the game. That is not a nice feeling and leaves me feeling a bit sad rather than excited,

I will play Mordor at some point of that I have no doubt and I will probably enjoy the experience but I am just not excited for it anymore. :-(

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Sashaa

I share the exact same feeling.

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Viktor Budusov

Yeah, if you wish to know how to ruin excitement to the ground ask SSG. Horrible marketing just horrible.

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Tobasco da Gama

Looking at the expansion packages I just feel like I am being only seen as a wallet rather than an actual person who enjoys the game.

I know I’m in the minority here, but I’ve always seen “expansions” this way. It seems to me that the golden years of LOTRO corresponded with an abandonment of the expansion model.

Frankly, everybody who spent those years demanding the return of expansions was an idiot. Good content needs time to breathe. An expansion tries to compress a huge amount of content into a short release cycle. It’s a phenomenal stress on a dev team to work like that. It costs a lot of money to do — which of course the studio then needs to recoup somehow — and the product is just never as good.

Fuck expansions, honestly.

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MesaSage

They’re ready

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finyar
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finyar

The new high elves look pretty good, but 80 dollars is a lot of money.

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Roger Melly

A top shelf elf ?

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Melissa McDonald

Wish we could change races to HE but I guess I’ll just have to roll one.
Hobbit Presents have made the game incredibly easy compared to the first few years. I have ridiculously good gear at level 38, Mathom Hunter’s Armour with stats like +20 Agility. I can mow down foes that con orange to me. Didn’t used to be like that!

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starbuck1771

I can do that without uber gear :P