Lord of the Rings Online’s 2021 roadmap includes Wildwood, Bilbo, Blood of Azog, Gundabad, and the LI revamp

    
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Lord of the Rings Online’s Rob “Severlin” Ciccolini just posted a new letter from producer for the community, through if you’ve been watching the game’s streams (and reading MOP’s Justin’s excellent recaps), you probably already know most of what’s coming.

In the immediate future, players can expect the formal release of the in-development Wildwood area of Bree-land, along with the Spring Festival, which will include a new group boss and a new “festivity.” Following Wildwood, Standing Stone plans to expand the mission system with the quest arcs, the first of which focuses on Bilbo Baggins himself. Then, update 30 will roll out in the summer.

“This summer brings Update 30: The Blood of Azog to The Lord of the Rings Online! As War of Three Peaks presses on, Durin Stonehelmson prepares to lead the Gabil’akkâ beyond the frozen gates of Mount Gundabad. At the urging of Glóin, Prince Durin sends word to the Lonely Mountain to muster even more Dwarves to Elderslade before the reclamation begins. As you aid in this effort, you’ll discover the tale of Hermáth Stormhammer, a hero of the Battle of Azanulbizar. You’ll experience important moments in the history of Durin’s Folk firsthand, such as the taking of the Oakenshield, the death of Azog, the ever-present danger of Durin’s Bane, and more! Update 30 will feature a new Interlude, new Quests, new Missions, and a new Raid in a Quest Pack that is free to VIPs!”

Emphasis ours, as players will recall that fleecing of VIPs and lifers was a big complaint in 2020. Of course, fall will pave the way for the delayed Gundabad expansion.

Notably, Severlin tells non-traditional players that they’re due for some love too, both in the form of the introduction of The Wastes (and maybe the Grey Mountains) to the legendary servers and… PvMP attention: “On the PvMP side I am happy to let you know that we currently have a designer who has regular time set aside for ongoing development work, and we want to address many of your concerns about PvMP balance and more.”

Finally, Ciccolini spends a line briefing players on the promised revamp for legendary items. Unfortunately, he’s not deleting them from existence; the plan is to “speed up LI leveling for players not at end-game and make […] newer regions more appealing for people working on their items.”

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Stormsong Minstrel

The life in rose colours through rose glasses… and some miracles.
“We we know, Guardian deserves more love” – poof, disappeared.
“We know, we know, LI revamp this year” – poof, disappeared.
“We know, we know, we not squeeze every nickel and dime” – poof, disappeared.
Not a single word about improving players’ quality of life. Not a single word that “mini-expansions” are past. Or that they know about instant problems with chats. Nothing. Total ignorance of what life in Lotro is.
This letter just proves the enormous ignorance. That we have developers who have very little knowledge on how the average player lives in Lotro. Developers who just copy-paste future content ideas, add some pre-war style propaganda and here we are.
I expected (naive, I know!) something honest. Some plans for game. Now we have just a pair of old-fashioned rose glasses. Sorry, dear devs, your house is burning and you care that flames look bright rose.

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Viktor Budusov

So if i understand this right Wildwood will be free (as part of Breeland), Azanulbizar will be usual questpack free for VIPs and then Gundabad expansion. Quite good i think. Can be counted as a small excuse for W3P.

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2Ton Gamer

The MP news is very welcome if they are truly serious about trying to make it better. I have always seen PvMP as one of the rough gems that could have been much more and even in the grand scheme of their store is a missed opportunity in terms of offering up cosmetics and even new races/classes. I say this with absolute disgust for their store, but it’s still something they could have milked for those who do not wish to sub.

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Roger Melly

I think my friends in Rift are considering Lotro as a one of the possible new homes for our guild after we learned many of the remaining people working on Rift apparently were made redundant by Gamigo yesterday . Would be kind of cool because Lotro has always been by second casual mmo that I have played alongside first WoW then Rift.

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SmiteDoctor

What happened?

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Roger Melly

According several people in my guild many of the remaining Rift team members came into the Rift official discord last night to confirm they have been made redundant and to express their thanks to the community . I was hoping to see an article on here today to confirm what has actually happened but maybe the news hasn’t got out yet .

There has been a thread on the forums that has been quite active in its speculation about the future of Rift which was suddenly closed last night after all this kicked off .

http://forums.riftgame.com/general-discussions/general-discussion/514370-defiance-defiance-2050-shutting-down-rift-next-12.html

Elarioks final post in this thread reads

“Hey everybody,

let me briefly address your biggest concern(s): Rift is not going to be shut down!

Most of you already noticed and pointed out a change in internal structures. While we’re not able to publicly address or communicate about those changes in detail, we can assure you that there will be a team responsible for and working on Rift (future development being part of this).

If there are still any concerns or worries left about that topic, please feel free to PM one of the CMs at any time.

We’ll close this thread by answering the thread’s title (Is Rift Next ?) with a clear NO! ”

I am not sure who the new team members will be but its odd if they intend to carry on developing for Rift that they are firing the many of the existing team yesterday . Wouldn’t it be better to build a new team around the team you already have in place rather than start anew ?

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Bruno Brito

So…the Guardian rework…when?

Also:

Unfortunately, he’s not deleting them from existence; the plan is to “speed up LI leveling for players not at end-game and make […] newer regions more appealing for people working on their items.”

This is not a revamp. This is just speeding things and forcing players to level LIs in updated content.

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MrReaper

Spot on. I don’t see any revamp. They could keep this letter for next year and the year after as a template