LOTRO loses its lead designer, starts Yuletide with two new instances

    
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Santa’s bringing both coal and presents to Lord of the Rings Online players this Christmas.

First, the coal. Long-time Lead Designer Ben “Dr Octothorpe” Schneider announced on Twitter that he is no longer with the studio. “Over the course six (six!) good years at Turbine/SSG I incremented several core attributes and racked up scores of skill points,” Schneider said. “I wish the DDO and LOTRO teams smooth roads ahead and success both short-term and long.”

But the sting of his departure may be soothed by today’s Update 23.1.7. This surprisingly jam-packed patch includes major overhauls to the Beorning and Burglar classes, dynamic text scaling for quest windows, better Angmar gearing, more raid difficulty levels, an additional Angmar playable landscape area, and an essence socket control panel.

If that’s not enough, today also marks the beginning of Yuletide, which comes with new rewards and a pair of new seasonal instances: “In Battle at Frostbluff, players will help the children of Winter-home save their snow forts from a monstrous mountain cold,” the studio posted. “In Boss from the Vaults: Storvâgûn, players will again face the traitorous giant-lord atop the snowy cliffs of Helegrod!”

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Legend Of Vinny T

dynamic text scaling for quest windows

comment image

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Maggie May

Since updating, my camera keeps panning around which is really annoying. I’ve partially fixed it but still a little odd. My burg is looking forward to shooting some knives at poor random creatures and Dunlendings.

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Bango on Laurelin

Whether DrO left or whether we was made redundant, what matters now is who SSG bring in to replace him. If it’s a junior or leave the role open then we know the game is on notice.

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Roger Melly

To clarify by junior do you mean anyone who works under the direction of the lead designer ? If that is the case then I think you are way off the mark because companies often promote from within .

I don’t think they would leave the design team leaderless unless they intend to sack them all soon , that could happen I guess but there is no sign of it happening yet .

I am not sure how many years there are left in this game given Standing Stone own neither the Lord of the Rings or Dungeons and Dragons licences I would say both games are probably going to come to an end sometime in the mid to late 2020’s . I would think they both will be around for a good few years yet . I see DDO has just announced a new expansion and I know there are plans for a new lotro expansion .

However that said I know my kinship are looking at the possibility of Pantheon being the game we move to once things start to wind down .

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teppic

Here are some font scaling examples:

Quest font scaling examples from lotro

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Michael18

Thanks! My LOTRO client isn’t working anymore since I have upgraded to Win 10, recently (crashes; probably need to install old DX version). So these screenshots are much appreciated!

Looks like the text scaling is working well.

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Michael18

dynamic text scaling for quest windows

See, B3? They read our posts here in the comments sections a few days ago and implemented that real quick. Who would’ve thought!

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BalsBigBrother

I posted in another article on lotro about his but yeah I fell out of my chair in shock hehe :p

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BalsBigBrother

Also when you say real quick I personally have been posting about this for nine years, the entire time I have been playing lotro . Guess I will have to find something else to post about now though hopefully this time something positive ;-)

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Michael18

Please post about a feature to adjust XP gain! This is something I’d love to see and this alone would make me level another alt.

They should just allow people to lower the XP gain by an arbitrary percentage. The on/off provided by the tortoise is just not the same and makes it a hassle to simulate something like 60% XP gain.

Such a thing would also be the perfect feature to sell in the shop, so I really don’t understand why they aren’t doing that.

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Paragon Lost

Was he laid off? Or did he just decide to move on. I couldn’t tell from his Twitter thread.

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Vincent Clark

If you read some of his earlier texts (mid October), I think some clues are there. Who knows though.

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Armsbend

I said it in the big purchase packs article – 2019 LOTRO starts winding down. Early 2020 shutdown or deep maintenance mode.

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Wilhelm Arcturus

The open question with that is what does SSG fall back on? If you only have two old cows to milk to keep the farm going, putting one out to pasture doesn’t seem like a viable long term growth strategy, to borrow a term.

Xijit
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Xijit

Dude, your pessimism makes my cynical ass look like a bucket of Rainbows.

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Armsbend

It was not always this way. Circa 2007 when I used to hang around xbox 360 forums from time to time all we talked about was how no human could ever play all of the great games being released on a near constant basis. It was the same on the pc. Roughly around 2010 – when certain games hit critical mass appeal – things began to quickly change.

Look at it now. If you were around 10 years ago and honestly compare it to today – today is trash. That isn’t nostalgia talking – the talent in the industry comparatively is a pale shadow. It has been replaced by suits and consultants who smelled that easy money around that 2010 mark. First order of business? get rid of the talent. let’s cut cost. These dumb teenagers won’t know the difference. For the most part, they were absolutely right.

Then Notch and Minecraft happened and the talent that was left wanted what he had – so early access/kickstarter in games became a thing – distributing the talent where it was almost unrecognizable across the industry. We’ve got good ideas barely capable of implementation. Ridiculous cycles where we are left with every piece of minute code placed. It used to be HYPE: game to be released in 3 months. Now: HYPE here is us making a coat animation. Game possible due for release 2023. Give us more money or else.

It’s fucking garbage.

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Geoffrey Smith

I am confused with how any of that is pertinent to this discussion. But ok.

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Vincent Clark

Maybe he just needed to get that off his chest.

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Armsbend

I just didn’t want to to seem I fell out of womb this way I guess.

And what you said.

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Roger Melly

People have been saying that for the last several years and it’s not shutdown or entered maintenance mode yet .