The LotRO Store & Turbine Points

Michael Dorosh

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I didn't buy Lord of the Accountants. Bottom line this for us.
 

Palantir

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It's hard to figure out with you earning TP's for doing deeds, earning traits etc.

But- ViP'ers can buy a few things per month or save it all up to get the Expansions for "free."
If you have a ViP account you earn 500 free pts per month (thats $5 in real money) then at a minimum every 3 months you can buy a new mount or new Quest Pack. (an Expansion Pack will be more - a lot more but the 500 free per month if saved should just cover the costs as they come out).

For 500 pts every month you can buy:
2-4 new cosmetic items or,
1 Hunter Guide Skill (is that one use or permanent?) or,
10 new emotes or,
1 vault upgrade (+15 slots)


If you're F2P, you're hosed...
A new Quest Pack costs 750 pts
A new mount 1500 pts,
A 30 day Mount Rental @500 pts.

From my readings as F2P even if you avoid the store and save up all your Turbine Points you can't play "Free" past the restricted lvl 50 without using real money to but more points to unlock Moria/Eregion/Mirkwood etc.

So ViP'ers are actually in a good situation- as long as you don't spend your points in the store except for the Expansion Packs.
 

Michael Dorosh

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How many Turbine Tokens does it cost to get a CTD (crash to desktop)? I had one tonight and average about one per week. I also play about once per week. :mad:

Or are they still going to be "free"? :p
 

Palantir

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I've had that happen to me more frequently lately as well.

Doing it the old fashioned way:
That shouldn't change but a lot of the dropped stuff I guess is now going to be "Skirmish Marks" or be noted as "Redeemable for Skirmish Marks" since Turbine announced they like using marks as the games trade Currency. (Which can probably be exchanged for Store Turbine Points)

My question is will the drop rates for stuff change since they can now make real money selling you that stuff instead (all those mob dropped potions & food for example.) Why drop it for free when they can sell it to you?

I wonder how the ratio is going to be controlled for the economy in game, for instance:
You will be able to buy dye colors from the store: White Dye the most sought after color costs 150 TP's then Red & Black cost 125 TPs, in game on the AH they average @250-300 Silver each. Which is going to be "better" paying 150 TP's or earning 150 Silver to buy from a crafter?
If more players use the store then fewer players will craft "that item" dropping them entirely. Which could then lead to fewer crafters (= less players bothering to earn silver & gold) if everyone just buys stuff.
I don't think you can use DDO as an example as it was F2P from the start (I believe).
It will be an interesting few months when it goes live.

Edit- I did notice that they are selling skills from several classes to anyone & everyone.
Besides selling the Hunter's ability of, "Guides to ...," (@500 TP) "Maps To ..." (100 TP- probably 1 use) and "Return To..." (@300 TP) they are also selling the Minstrels "Revive" skill (150 TP).
You might actually be able to drop certain classes from groups entirely if everyone just buys enough "x."


It will be a glorious day when they finally just allow us to create the "Adventurer Class" (5000 TPs)
They start with only the most basic skills and from there you can purchase any skill from any other class you want at 1 new skill per level) to build the exact character you want, different from everyone else. (Pretty much the same way the RPG "RoleMaster System" did it- who used it in their "Middle Earth Role Playing "MERP" game which I loved.)
 
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Palantir

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More Store/F2P stuff:

If enough players start buying all the in-store buffs (easy to get) and then literally walk through the “hard” quests/encounters will Turbine up the difficulty level of those instances to compensate, thereby screwing the players who are not buying the buffs? In effect they will be “encouraging” players to start buying those big “buff” items just so they can get through them? Instead of having to hope that eventually enough of those special items will drop randomly in-game for them.

Saw some posts in the F2P forum discussions roughly saying that:

“Based on what Turbine said- if you are earning TP’s during game play you in effect did earn (worked for) whatever you buy in the store even if it’s a hard to get item.” {Translation- if you kill enough Orcs in the North Downs (get enough TP's) that earns you the right to buy that Lothlorien Mount even without having any Rep with the Lorien Elves or going there.}


“Bring on the F2P’ers! Let them spend their real money to improve and expand my (ViP) game!”


Some direct posts that were interesting:


Starting about here:
http://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?t=340959&page=41


“The person who was Executive Producer of DDO during the transition is now our Executive Producer. It doesn't get much closer then that. If anyone wants to use the "it's a different game" line, then please refrain from saying "look how well it worked in DDO" and "it's the same system as in DDO." You can't have it both ways.”

“The business decisions are made by one team of executives. When DDO goes in a specific direction, which means the execs like that direction, and are likely going to apply it to Lotro as well. We aren't talking about WoW or SWTOR, we're talking about a game that Turbine owns, operates, and treats as a test bed for new tech.”




“They don't even have to sell "everything" in order to ruin someone's perceptions of the game or their overall enjoyment. They only have to start changing the game 'just enough' to drive Store sales that it becomes obvious that decisions are being made with profit motive first, gameplay/fun factor second.

Abstract example:

1) Invent item that will be in high demand
2) Sell item on Store
3) Put item in game, but gated behind long/tedious/unenjoyable grind
4) Profit!

The players who want that item see their choice as "spend money or grind forever."

I'm sure some people will say, "I really want that item but I don't want to grind forever, here take my money" and be done with it.

Plenty of other people will say, "Man, this stupid grind wouldn't even be in the game if it weren't for the Store."

So you make some content that's unenjoyable* but has a highly desired reward, then offer a way to buy your way direct to the reward. It thus becomes profitable to put good rewards behind content that isn't fun. The concept of a game that's supposed to be fun and rewarding entertainment starts to take a back-seat to a cash-flow machine. That's when people get upset. When it starts to seem like the game they love is changing into a coin-operated vending machine. When "problems" with game systems can be resolved or avoided, but only for a price.

Granted, your average F2P MMO might be a LOT worse than this. But that doesn't mean the entire player base is going to welcome this transition with roses and a parade.

(*the content itself doesn't even have to be unenjoyable -- it might be a lot of fun, in moderation, but the only way to get the reward out of it might be to repeat it over and over and over again, thus taking an initially fun process and stretching it out through endless repetition until people are burned out on it.)”




“My concern is that rather than addressing the unfun grind elements in a way that benefits all players, the main thrust of the "fix" will be to allow players to buy out of the grinds with store purchases. That is where Turbine's greatest economic incentive will be, at least in terms of the timing of the return and the ability to measure the results”.



Buying Radiance gear & LI's seems to fit that list as Turbine will have to keep adding more & better items to the store or make unique store-items only to keep the money rolling in once it starts and players have bought the standard items.
 

Redwolf

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The thing that makes me having a relaxed attitude about this is that I really hate much of the very grind that you can now skip. I don't want to go back and kill 150 wolves in the shire after I long stopped getting XP for them. As far as I am concerned some of the gating was already so outrageously stupid that they wouldn't have to bother making it worse.

The only thing that nags me about the mounts for sale is that the freaggin' goat is in there.
 

Michael Dorosh

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The thing that makes me having a relaxed attitude about this is that I really hate much of the very grind that you can now skip. I don't want to go back and kill 150 wolves in the shire after I long stopped getting XP for them.
But actually doing it is supposed to set you apart.

You know. As a lifeless loser or somefink.

I don't know, where do you draw the line. Why not just "buy" a character already levelled to 60, with all the mounts, jewellery, armour and deeds accomplished? You could then skip the game altogether and go outside and ride your bike or something.
 

Redwolf

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But actually doing it is supposed to set you apart.

You know. As a lifeless loser or somefink.

I don't know, where do you draw the line. Why not just "buy" a character already levelled to 60, with all the mounts, jewellery, armour and deeds accomplished? You could then skip the game altogether and go outside and ride your bike or something.
My view on it is that the quest and the regular traveling-and-ambushed-by-mobs activity is interesting and sometimes challenging. That's what I want.

MMORPG manufacturers cannot provide enough challenging and interesting content to keep people paying subscription fees every month for years. So they suck those who are reward-addicted into doing non-challenging and repetitive things. Some of those rewards enable new challenging things (like gear that you need to do some other thing that is real content) to suck a couple more people in.

Ask my boss about what I think of repetitive work :D

I am happy to shortcut through task that are clearly in the second category. Anything that is plain "kill 150 <xyz>" I am willing to skip. At least it should have a boss at the end or the 150 mobs are carefully set up in one place to present a challenge. But just going out and killing 150 <xyz>, all of which are on levels that can't kill me, are spread out without mutual support and I can pick which one when is a waste of my time.

The problem with the whole business model is that user's can't make "scenarios" like for wargames. Not even maps. That's why I probably won't stay with MMORPGs. The combat model is somewhat interesting enough to play against AI mobs. But the combat model is 100% useless for human team against human team play since the threat aspect and crowd control would be invalidated. And even Starcraft II has user-made maps.

Can you imagine what LOTRO would look like after 3 years if players could have designed a quest area with landscape, mob placement and quests?
 

Palantir

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My view on it is that the quest and the regular traveling-and-ambushed-by-mobs activity is interesting and sometimes challenging. That's what I want.
I agree 100%, I just wish there were real "traveling warbands and ambushes" that pop up randomly anywhere not the "next mob reappears here in 5 minutes" type. Can you imagine the fun if 20 level 30 Orcs went on a rampage thru Ered Luin killing npc's for an hour or so and staying until killed? Players would actually have to call for help to stop it and those that did + - 5 levels would get cool rewards. That rampage might not occur again for months & the next one might be in Moria a week later. There should also be large mobs wandering down the roads looking for travelers not paying attention... This is not the same as "skirmishes" that are completely isolated from the real game.
{Not unlike in WoW when the enemy raided your town "PvP" and killed everyone- however the effects would last longer and you'd get rewards for helping. If the mobs can't hurt you (Grey) you don't get the rewards just the satisfaction of helping stop them. The same when running into a group of enemy PvP- you fight or run for your life. If Turbine wants to take out the boring grinds toss in some random events across the world.}

Anything that is plain "kill 150 <xyz>" I am willing to skip. At least it should have a boss at the end or the 150 mobs are carefully set up in one place to present a challenge. But just going out and killing 150 <xyz>, all of which are on levels that can't kill me, are spread out without mutual support and I can pick which one when is a waste of my time..
Agree again, I've said before that I'd rather have to ride out and save 10 isolated homesteads from bands of <xyz> than run around in a big circle picking off 150 poor slobs at my level or not.


Can you imagine what LOTRO would look like after 3 years if players could have designed a quest area with landscape, mob placement and quests?
How about just having some real input on what type quests are in each area?
 

Palantir

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After looking over how players can get more of the almighty Turbine Points I realized that anyone actively playing the game right now is shooting themselves in the foot.

You lost an opportunity to get extra TP's in the future if you:

Recently discovered a new area
Completed a Deed
Advanced a trait a level or,
Upped your reputation with a group
(Might be more ways that Turbine has not yet announced)

Is this a big concern, maybe not, but it all depends on how Turbine officially breaks down how much everything will cost & how important "special" store-only items become in playing the game.

If I was not a Life-timer (ViP) I'd be thinking twice before doing anything in the game right now that could cost me TP's since that is how they will get quest packs, expansions etc.
 

Redwolf

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After looking over how players can get more of the almighty Turbine Points I realized that anyone actively playing the game right now is shooting themselves in the foot.

You lost an opportunity to get extra TP's in the future if you:

Recently discovered a new area
Completed a Deed
Advanced a trait a level or,
Upped your reputation with a group
(Might be more ways that Turbine has not yet announced)

Is this a big concern, maybe not, but it all depends on how Turbine officially breaks down how much everything will cost & how important "special" store-only items become in playing the game.

If I was not a Life-timer (ViP) I'd be thinking twice before doing anything in the game right now that could cost me TP's since that is how they will get quest packs, expansions etc.
Don't worry.

The amount of point you get from deeps is ludicrously low :D

It's like 5 points for a 100 animal deed or somefink.
 

Palantir

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That means for every 1000 dead animals I can get a new Emote, Superman potion or scroll to Supercharge my armor!!
:nofear:

Hey wait a second... :hmmm: 5+5+10+5+... = ...Turbine Points

:mad: I'M BEING RIPPED OFF BY PLAYING RIGHT NOW!!!!! :hissyfit: :argh:

:nuts:

Oh well. :laugh:
 

Redwolf

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I just canceled my subscriptions over the potions. Whether people see it or not, they will have a severe impact on grouping at end-game, and they will either make endgame fights too easy with the pots, or will fail to give proper credit to those who don't use them, or they will adjust the difficulty of the fights thereby closing them to people who don't run on real-world money (more money after they pay the monthly subscription).
 

Palantir

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I wouldn't have cancelled an account, although I've read that other players are doing it, without first experiencing the F2P game myself and see how much it affected my own playing of it. (Of course being a life-timer that’s easy for me to say)

We've discussed the concerns of F2P in this game but until it goes live and everyone gets to see it in action how can we really tell? The outcry if "bad" will certainly be heard by Turbine and may make them rethink their plans.

Plus there's always the chance that the LotR staff at Turbine will realize that this game is not just another fantasy MMO created to make a few bucks off and they will rein in the money guys only. It's THE Fantasy that put the genre on the map big time long before there were computers. People play this game for Tolkien’s story: you can play any MMO if you want to just kill stuff with swords and spells or guns. Messing with the books core stuff like giving flying mounts to lvl 20's, getting to personally battle Saruman/Sauron, throwing the Ring in yourself etc. will kill this game instantly.

I'm still surprised at how many players are NOT actively leveling their characters but RP'ing or enjoying just running around the world (some still won't get mounts).

WoW could survive if their "core" players, who follow whatever storyline they have, leave based on sheer number of players alone. But if the core players leave Rings I don't think it will last very long. And if the game does just become another run of the mill fantasy MMO even the casual F2P players will soon move on to the next new F2P fantasy system that comes along.

I may not like all the changes but I certainly wouldn’t cancel my account over it- yet.

Good news:
I saw this info posted in the Hunters forum which is good, so it’s not getting ALL bad.

There is a LAU add-on that will act as a travel wallet. You click on it, then it opens up all your hunter ports. There is also a mount one too!

Rejoice hunters... 2 full taskbars are now free!



Hunters New skills:

1. Blood arrow, level 44.

Uses 3 focus, 5% morale, no power. Similar damage to Penetrating Shot, higher crit multiplier. 10s cool-down. {that 5% of your max morale}


2. Dazing Blow, level 48

melee skill, 2 attacks, 5s daze!!!, 52 power cost 60s cool-down, so not spammable. Improved Dazing Blow available @ level 52 - REMOVES 3 CORRUPTIONS
 
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Redwolf

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I wouldn't have cancelled an account, although I've read that other players are doing it, without first experiencing the F2P game myself and see how much it affected my own playing of it. (Of course being a life-timer that?s easy for me to say)
I don't do "I want or I quit". It is a waste of time. If Turbine bothers to look up how many of those actually do quit or have quit and finds some who did that is the only thing that can move anything.

Also, I am quite a while away from level 60 so I couldn't observe the effects firsthand even if I joined beta now.

There's always the chance that the LotR staff at Turbine will realize that this game is not just another fantasy MMO created to make a few bucks off and they will rein in the money guys only. It's THE Fantasy that put the genre on the map big time long before there were computers. People play this game for Tolkien?s story: you can play any MMO if you want to just kill stuff with swords and spells or guns. Messing with the books core stuff like giving flying mounts to lvl 20's, getting to personally battle Saruman/Sauron, throwing the Ring in yourself etc. will kill this game instantly.
I will resubscribe if these things don't make it into live. But I see no chance for that given that DDO seems to make the majority of revenue on similar buffs.

WoW could survive if their "core" players, who follow whatever storyline they have, leave based on sheer number of players alone. But if the core players leave Rings I don't think it will last very long. And if the game does just become another run of the mill fantasy MMO even the casual F2P players will soon move on to the next new F2P fantasy system that comes along.
Right. How many people will make level 60 as a "f2p" wimp? :D

I may not like all the changes but I certainly wouldn?t cancel my account over it- yet.
As I said earlier, until potiongate I found that overall I gain more than I lose.

Good news: I saw this info posted in the Hunters forum which is good, so it?s not getting ALL bad.

There is a LAU add-on that will act as a travel wallet. You click on it, then it opens up all your hunter ports. There is also a mount one too!

Rejoice hunters... 2 full taskbars are now free!


I was really looking forward to LAU :(

Sad puppy.

Hunters New skills:

1. Blood arrow, level 44.

Uses 3 focus, 5% morale, no power. Similar damage to Penetrating Shot, higher crit multiplier. 10s cool-down. {that 5% of your max morale}


2. Dazing Blow, level 48

melee skill, 2 attacks, 5s daze!!!, 52 power cost 60s cool-down, so not spammable. Improved Dazing Blow available @ level 52 - REMOVES 3 CORRUPTIONS
There's a whole range of actual bugfixes in this same code change. Just Lore-Masters alone get two outright broken things fixed.
 

Palantir

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When's the Kinship Estate Sale?

I call dibs on the following items:

The stuffed Tom Bombadil in the back yard (never make up silly songs about MD to his face…) :freak:
The "Barad-dur or Bust" cloak in the front room (I snagged off of Sam while at the Pony). :drink:
Arwens First-age training-bra on display by the fireplace (nice grab RD!), :devious:
and Saruman's "You can trust me- I wear white!" tapestry hanging in the hallway. :halo:

MD & I can rock-paper-scissors the other stuff. :p
:OHNO:
:ciao: around RD. :upset:
 

Michael Dorosh

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I'm still surprised at how many players are NOT actively leveling their characters but RP'ing or enjoying just running around the world (some still won't get mounts).
I keep parroting this - IRON MAN. That's essentially what it is. What Turbine needs to do is find a way to make money off the people like me and them who are doing that.

I kind of thought the monthly subscription would be enough, but apparently not.

Maybe they should never have sold those lifetime subscriptions.
 

Michael Dorosh

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I think for me, my whole approach to the game is encapsulated in the Sharkey's Lieutenant quest line.

It took me weeks to level up and beat this solo. I would go off and discover new areas, have different adventures, and every time I levelled up once or twice, get a couple more skills, weapons, etc., I'd think "maybe I can take on Sharkey's Lieutenant this time", and would come back and try again. It was the same thing with the quest into the Brigand's Watch to rescue the damsel in distress. I tried that one about ten times before I finally levelled up enough to do it solo.

If all the expansions are going to cap levelling at 5 levels, I wonder how that same feeling of expansiveness will translate. Translation: it won't, or at least, I don't see how it can. And apparently neither does Turbine, hence the emphasis on Skirmishing, "quest packs" and other stuff.

It was fun to be Level 13 and have so much to look forward to - getting a mount at 30, not having any idea how far I had to level up in order to beat Sharkey's Lieutenant or rescue the girl from the Brigands, etc.

I am finding now that many of the quests left available to my Level 56 hunter are obnoxiously difficult group quests with mobs of 15,000 HP monsters that can't be soloed. I've taken to grinding out old deeds - killing greyed out beasts in bunches of 300 at a time - just for something to do.

They went the wrong way. I would have loved to have seen Rohan added in a system where you enter the area with level 60 character, and start over at 0, or perhaps have a "column shift" or something, and have 60 more levels of vertical movement to play around in. Make it like entering SoA once more. But that won't happen. Instead, we have skirmishing and MvP and other stuff I don't really care about.
 
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