Lord of the Rings Online returned to service last night, with fresh outages and lag

And still no clear explanation for what's going on.

    
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Lord of the Rings Online returned to service last night, with fresh outages and lag

We return to the ongoing Lord of the Rings Online saga this morning, as Standing Stone Games’ MMOs have entered their 10th day of issues. Around 7:30 p.m. EDT last night, the studio brought LOTRO back online, noting that it would be keeping chat offline and monitoring the servers overnight. It also promised to extend the ongoing Midsummer Festival through August 3rd and “provide more information about a thank you gift and other matters in the near future.” It remains unclear what the issues are and whether VIP time will be compensated.

But of course, as players quickly found out, whatever problem has been plaguing the servers for the last week and a half wasn’t actually repaired, as several servers immediately crashed again while others continued suffering the same issues as before. I personally managed to log in for an hour on Landroval near on to midnight, but the official forums and Twitter are filled with players who reported extreme lag, rubber-banding, and crashes over the course of the night.

All servers do appear to be up this morning, but of course, the real test will be this afternoon when prime time begins, and some players have already begun the deluge of weekend problem reporting:

Criticism for the studio has been understandably fierce, from observers like MOP and players, though it’s been aimed more at the company’s meager communication than at the technical issues themselves. Roger at Contains Moderate Peril summed it up this morning, pointing out that how a studio handles a problem from the community’s end is just as important as solving it:

“Are players asking for rash promises regarding technical solutions? No. Are they asking SSG to breach rules regarding disclosure and confidentiality? No. They’re looking for a simple, concise explanation as to the broad nature of the ‘problem’. They’re also looking for a reason to get behind the technical staff who I’m sure are working extremely hard under extremely pressured circumstances. We appreciate that a bullet proof ETA on a solution is not practical. But regular, sincere updates on progress would be very reassuring. Everyone knows what’s at stake. We know that downtime means no one is playing and if no one is playing, then no one is paying. A drop in revenues is not good for any MMO. But SSG need to realise that the immense goodwill of their players that they have benefitted from for the last decade is not an infinite commodity. They need to communicate and keep everyone onboard, rather than push players away due to perceived indifference.”

Our own LOTRO Legendarium will weigh in later today; stay tuned for that.

Source: Twitter, forums. Thanks, Jim.
Update
Nothing really new in here, but here’s the recap: On this afternoon’s stream, Cordovan says the goal is to keep the servers up over the weekend and that the studio plans to work out whatever the compensation will be early next week. World chat will still be down for the immediate future. He does not elaborate on the cause of the issues and indeed suggests he is not permitted to do so (I could have misheard him, but I thought I heard him say at one point, in response to players saying this was all vague, “I know, I know”), but he does once again note that they are server-related and very definitely not related to any sort of data breach. The next update (27.2) has been bumped to next week or the week after, depending on the stability going forward. In response to a player question about preventing these issues in the future, he says this may be something the studio can address at some point, but he does not do so here.

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lostkoss

Why does it take all summer to get to Mordor?

Because SSG bought new servers from the Wish App.

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starbuck1771

You are welcome Bree.

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rk70534

Played several hours on Friday afternoon on Evernight, with population climbing over 600. Then in Misty Mountains character got stuck, couldn’t move after fast travel. Logged out, logged in after midnight to terrible lag which got better when I went to Bree. Lag was pretty normal in Breeland, did deeds, but population was between 149-233 during the few hours I played.

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Michael18

My server just went pooof (character did no longer move, then client shut down, no longer able to log back in). Got a good 45min of questing in before that, so not too bad.

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Bango on Laurelin

Actually logged onto Laurelin just to see if the lag was bad – and it was perfectly fine – normal latency, no packet loss.

But even better, in the Bree crafting hall, people were using /say to communicate with each other & asking for help. A roleplayer’s dream.

I was almost tempted to actually carry on playing.

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Amorey

Laurelin is running ok at the moment, did some RP this afternoon in Rohan and it was fine .

And yes, you should carry on playing, so you can finally deliver that pie ;)

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Steve Martin

Early adapter and Lifetime subscriber here. I worry that they’ve downgraded hardware to save money to such an extent that the game just cannot handle the strain.

I don’t think they should even consider what compensation to provide until the problems are completely fixed. Expecting anyone to spend money before then is absurd.

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Jim Bergevin Jr

I doubt it is a hardware issue. SOP in a server farm is redundancy of hardware. Individual blades can go at any time, and the end user isn’t even aware that anything failed.

To me, this looks like a cascading software failure, especially since more than just the game itself is affected. That tends to be harder to pin down and resolve, depending on what particular bit end up being affected. The fact that they are reluctant, or outright prevented from talking about it tells me either someone f-ed up when mucking about in the code or the DB, or there’s a virus in the system.

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starbuck1771

More then one game is effected DDO has been having issues as well.

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Paragon Lost

At this point they are their own worst enemy and will drive off players, some who won’t return. :/

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Fred Douglas

I think the quoted guy got it right. I think a lot of people think that the LOTRO community is happy to just stand around the prancing pony, play the lute, and collect flowers, but SSG with their raids that exclude 90% of the community, P2W design, tech problems, and so on, will eventually exhaust the good will of the community. It’s too bad.

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Koshelkin

They should do it like SE when new expansions are released and should’ve told people they’ve been targeted by a DDOS attack. Too late for that, though

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Bryan Turner

Probably their Russian Mafia silent partners over at Daybreak stealing their server bandwidth to farm some Crypto.