Dev Chat 03 09 08

[20:08] <@Elm> Good evening and welcome to another great Stratics house of commons chat, tonight our guests are the developers of Lord of the Rings Online. The topic will be Mines of Moria so any questions on that are welcome!
[20:10] <@Elm> Please send said questions to myself to do so type /query Elm and type in the window that pops up. Questions sent to the devs will not make it into the lineup, so don't bother. Full logs of the chat will be up shortly.
[20:10] <@Elm> We'll start with a brief introduction from the developers, now would be a good time to send those questions.
[20:10] <@Scenario> Hello all - my name is Matt "Scenario" Elliott, Lead World Designer for LOTRO. We're in bug-crushing mode on Moria and getting ready to dive into preproduction for first of our post-expansion updates.
[20:11] <@Keth_Turbine> Hi, I'm Keth. If you change your mind, I'm the first in line.
[20:11] <@Keth_Turbine> Honey I'm still free.
[20:11] <@Keth_Turbine> Take a chance on me.
[20:11] <@Keth_Turbine> Oh, and I'm a designer on LOTRO. I did some stuff in Book 14, like Live Ops and Battles. I'm working on Moria stuff now.
[20:11] <@TensLOTRO> Hello Europe! This is Ryan "Tens" Bednar, the Systems Team Lead on LOTRO. And Iâm here to answer all of your questions about Moria! Or, well, at least a few... hopefully
[20:11] <@Jalessa> Hi Creeps, Freeps, and Peeps! I'm Jalessa, a systems designer working on Monster Play for Mines of Moria. Orion is trying to corrupt me, please send help..I'm at STAB.
[20:11] <@OrionTurbine> Pay no attention to that last line. Jalessa is fine. Hello everyone! I am Orion, also known as Allan Maki. You might know me from such content as monster play, Barad Gúlaran, and several quests that you have completed and forgotten! I am pleased to be here today.
[20:11] <@Graal> Howdy Everybody. I am Graal (otherwise known as Ken Burd). I am primarily responsible for the new Warden class, the Champion class and whatever else needs to be done in game systems design.
[20:11] <@Meghan_Turbine> Hi everyone, I'm Meghan "Patience" Rodberg, community manager at Turbine, and I need at least 2 more stimpacks to reach 100% health. Thanks for coming tonight!

[20:13] <@Elm> *JoePhi* Hey Devs! There have been some rumors due to an interview of Jeff Steefel with People are afraid that we will see itemshops in LotRo in the EU and the US in the future. Could you please clarify this issue before everybody really freaks out on the forums? Thanks!
[20:13] <@Meghan_Turbine> Hi JoePhi! Rumors and speculation abounds from the smallest comments. We have no plans at this time for item shops.

[20:14] <@Elm> *Gumble* Since Book 14, enemies that do knockback have be flinging players in (somtimes comically) random directions, making some fights a matter of luck. Is this an intended change, or something "we're aware of and looking into it"?
[20:14] <@OrionTurbine> Hi *gumble*. We are aware of that issue and it has been addressed certainly for Moria as have the points where monsters become unresponsive and circle your character until dead.

[20:15] <@Elm> *[DJ]PsychO* Based on the estimated development cycle so far, how do you feel the project is comming together with the amount of resources available?
[20:15] <@OrionTurbine> It is looking pretty darn good! I am feeling like we have accomplished a lot and I think that the big changes and additions are going to be welcome.
[20:16] <@Meghan_Turbine> It's going great! In fact, beta registrations are now up at and we'll be inviting participants in the very near future.
[20:16] <@TensLOTRO> Considering the amount of time we had to develop Moria, and the number of really great features we're adding for the Expansion, I'd say that we're all really pleased with our progess up to this point.
[20:16] <@Jalessa> I'm really enjoying how clean and polished Monster Play is looking. I'm psyched and I hope everyone really enjoys what we're doing!
[20:16] <@Scenario> Hey Psych0 - as I mentioned in my entire, outside of bug fixing, the world team is pretty much done with Moria development. It's be a lot of hard work over the past 10 or so months to get Moria shining brightly (in a dark cave sort of way).
[20:16] <@Scenario> er.. intro
[20:17] <@TensLOTRO> We've been busy, but we're really looking forward to Moria going live!

[20:17] <@Elm> *Marmantemac* Will it be possible in the future, that we can read for example 5 one time recipes (for the same item) so that we have something like "5 x Engraved Beryl Earring" in our crafting-window?
[20:18] <@Keth_Turbine> we've talked in the past about making it so the individual recipes stack... and I thought we did that, but maybe it's showing up in Moria.
[20:18] <@Keth_Turbine> it's a bit of a blur now!
[20:18] <@Keth_Turbine> so it won't queue up in your craft window, but you will at least be able to stack the recipes.
[20:18] <@Keth_Turbine> (I'm going to have to follow up on that now, to make sure we actually did that!)
[20:19] <@Elm> *Tazjin* Okay, a question: What do you guys think about other MMOs copying concepts from Lotro?
[20:19] <@Keth_Turbine> MMO gaming is a collaborative experience, both in playing them and making them.
[20:19] <@Keth_Turbine> we look at our competition and they look at us. In the end it tends to make better games for everyone.
[20:20] <@TensLOTRO> And, as we all know, imitation is the highest form of flattery.

[20:20] <@Elm> *Morosi* In book 13 there was a music system, where as the different instruments could be put in the same file and synced. In book 14 there seems to be a bug, where as the syncing no lon+ger works
[20:20] <@Meghan_Turbine> Hi Morosi. That's a known bug that's been filed and will be fixed. We know the music system is important to a lot of our players!

[20:21] <@Elm> *hayek* Will there be any changes to the group XP system? Right now the system is too generous in my opinion. By allowing much higher level players into lower level groups with almost no exp penalty trivializes most of the game content.
[20:22] <@TensLOTRO> We're not planning any changes to the group XP system at this point in time - or for Moria.

[20:22] <@Elm> *Berenhir* I've understood that Steefel has been very optimistic about the Korean launch of Lotro when speaking to game journalists earlier. So out of curiosity, has it launched there yet, or is it in some kind of beta phase? Needless to say, the Korean Lotro website didn't help much...
[20:23] <@Meghan_Turbine> Hiya Berenhir. Short answer: Yes, LOTRO just recently launched in Korea, which was really exciting for us!

[20:23] <@Elm> *Atador* When will Moria be released?
[20:24] <@Meghan_Turbine> Mines of Moria will be released as soon as it's ready, and is currently on target for this fall. We're not getting any more specific than that yet, but an official release date is coming soon.

[20:24] <@Elm> *AmpliFied_SouL* Warhammer online is coming this month, WoW's expansion is following, AoC is getting some client fixes. My question is, does turbine plan on giving the people who don't find fishing that "challenging", anything new to keep them paying for lotro ? I mean something different than the notorious riddle, knockback and RAT bugs.
[20:25] <@Keth_Turbine> Perhaps you haven't heard, but we do have an expansion pack coming out.
[20:25] <@Keth_Turbine> Yeah, it's kind of neat. It's got a new Item Advancement system, trait sets, 2 new classes, lots new instances and PvE content.
[20:25] <@Keth_Turbine> So, yeah, we think there's a reason to stick with LOTRO.

[20:26] <@Elm> *cike* The ringlore quest showed the size of the european - especially the german RP - community. I've never seen someone von the turbine staff on the european (german) forum. Is this maybe going to change in the future?
[20:26] <@OrionTurbine> Unfortunately, none of us speak or write German fluently so we are a little uncomfortable visiting those forums. We are more than happy to visit the English speaking/writing forums and visit there often. You should direct your questions there.

[20:26] <@Elm> *Khelgar* MoM Question, How long will it take for the Rune Keeper's attunement bar to go from Nuke back to neutral in combat?
[20:26] <@Liquilla_CM> we do have the lovely Amaurea supporting the DE LOTRO forums though,
[20:27] <@Liquilla_CM> who can help to co-ordinate the German feedback to the Turbine Devs ^_^ (sorry to bust in on the next question)
[20:28] <@TensLOTRO> Good question.
[20:28] <@TensLOTRO> While it's not something that Rune-keepers will be able to do easily, if you're heavily Attuned towards either Damage or Healing, you should be able to shift to the opposite side of your Attunement during the course of a standard group encounter; if you desire to.

[20:29] <@Elm> *jeffers* question: i havent seen any notes on this anywhere, but burglars HiPS seems broken and seem people are being detected soon after using it, myself i got spotted by a GM controller amarthiel after hips infront to avoid imminent death to be hit out of stealth while running away (within 10s easily)
[20:29] <@Keth_Turbine> Dude, she's Amarthiel.
[20:29] <@Scenario> Jeffers - if it is any consolation, Amarthiel did the same thing to me when I tried to strategically reposition myself during one of her raids on Annuminas.
[20:29] <@Scenario>

[20:30] <@Elm> *Nyadach* More one for Codies than Turbine, but congrats with the GM who played Amarthiel, are more live action events such as these due in the coming months?
[20:30] <@Keth_Turbine> Well, on our end of it, we tried to implement something that was very easy for everyone to run.
[20:30] <@Keth_Turbine> In fact, behind the scenes there was a quest the Admins were using to launch and run the event.
[20:30] <@Keth_Turbine> In addition, we spent a lot of time writing documentation for the Live Op and did some phone conferencing with our counterparts at Codemasters.
[20:30] <@Keth_Turbine> In looking at how it all went, it is obvious that we need to do something like this again.
[20:31] <@Liquilla_CM> on the European servers, now that our GM team is much stronger we will be looking to do more and more live events on the servers in all territories. Yay
[20:31] <@Liquilla_CM> so look out for those!

[20:31] <@Elm> *Zitro* Will all classes up to lvl 60 every lvl gain new spells? And how many new Spells can we expect for each class?
[20:33] <@TensLOTRO> All of our exisiting classes can expect upgrades to 2 of their current skills, as well as 3 new skills that will be closely tied to the 3 new Trait Sets we will be rolling out for all of our classes.

[20:35] <@Elm> *Faeron* Hi, i wanted to ask if there are comming new hairstyles, beards and so on with mines of moria.
[20:35] <@Keth_Turbine> For Moria, we are focusing on new art for Legendary Items and new high level armour sets.
[20:35] <@Keth_Turbine> Additional cosmetic appearance options will likely be showing up in future book releases.

[20:37] <@Elm> *Urgamanix* After announcing only one 12-man raid for MoM, the raiding community got noticably worried. Can you please clarify and expand on future plans for raiding, as information is thin on the ground
[20:37] <@OrionTurbine> One of the key additions or improvements coming to The Lord of the Rings Online with the Moria expansion is a better structure to our instances. This means that there will be more attention paid to the overall flow of instances.
[20:37] <@OrionTurbine> Now, what that means is we are attempting to form structure to our instances and raids in such a manner that they feed into one another.
[20:38] <@OrionTurbine> It has not always been the case that the instances preceeding a raid were directly related in any form, in the future this will not be the case.
[20:39] <@OrionTurbine> At launch we are focusing on getting players introduced to these new concepts. Enhancements to the Dread/Hope system will play a major factor in these new spaces.
[20:40] <@OrionTurbine> This will help us to more adequately introduce you to the cluster concept. I know that we are currently working on a developer diary to explain a lot of the major changes with regards to this system and we are well aware that there is a sizable group of players that enjoys our raid mechanics.
[20:40] <@OrionTurbine> Rest assured that though the Moria expansion features only one 12-man raid it will not be the last one that you see.
[20:40] <@OrionTurbine> Though, smaller and more easily managed raids are certainly the path that we intend to tread.
[20:41] <@OrionTurbine> Hope that answered the question well enough.

[20:41] <@Elm> *Gumble* With the coming crafting specializations, will there be recipes that you can only use if you are specialized, or will being specialized just give you extra "oomf" when doing that craft?
[20:42] <@TensLOTRO> No. Weaponsmiths will still remain a very viable Crafting Profession once Moria goes live.
[20:42] <@TensLOTRO> In fact, all of our Professions will be able to produce either Item Advancable items for our various Classes, or items that can be otherwise used by players to benefit the advancement of their items.
[20:43] <@TensLOTRO> As you can expect, Weaponsmiths will be able to craft Legendary Swords and the like.
[20:43] <@TensLOTRO> But, additionally, non-weapon crafting Professions, like Scholars, will be able to craft Legendary Items like Books for Lore-masters.
[20:44] <@TensLOTRO> With our general goal being to integrate our Crafting System into the Item Advancement System in the strongest way possible.

[20:45] <@Elm> *Allegro* With trait sets being introduced it sounds like there is a good motivation for me to get as many traits as possible before Moria to make my set as complete as possible? Is this correct, and if so, are there plans to make acquiring traits easier, e.g. those from instances?
[20:45] <@Scenario> Class Traits will be obtained via the same ways they have previously - via skill usage, deed-driven drops and quests. Virtues are a separate pool of modifiers and you will find a variety of soloable and group/instance deeds available to further advance your ranks in them in Moria (up to a cap of Rank 10). We are not making class-specific regional or instance deeds.
[20:46] <@Scenario> It doesn't hurt to complete the Class Deeds you have as completion does benefit your character.

[20:46] <@Elm> *Naithan* Hi!! i would like to ask if there will be a new faster mount at the expantion .. or you are planning to add it with some reputation reward??
[20:46] <@Keth_Turbine> This seems like a good opportunity for me to talk about the reputation factions in Moria.
[20:46] <@Keth_Turbine> So there will be 2 new dwarf reputation factions in Moria, the Iron Garrison Guards and the Iron Garrison Miners.
[20:46] <@Keth_Turbine> These 2 factions will take the same reputation trophies, so you won't have to worry about having different rep trophies for different rep factions.
[20:46] <@Keth_Turbine> In addition, we have removed the restrictions on turning in the trophies that exist in the other factions, so won't be as many hoops to jump through to get started on earning your rep.
[20:46] <@Keth_Turbine> Finally, each factions rewards are themed a little differently, with the Guards being more about helping your offensive abilities, and the Miners more about exploration and other perks of that nature.
[20:47] <@Keth_Turbine> Getting back to your original question about the Mounts, since the Miners are all about exploration, they will be responsible for rewarding players with mounts that can actually be ridden in Moria.
[20:47] <@Keth_Turbine> (As you know, horses cannot be ridden through Moria. Otherwise the fellowship would have taken Bill with them!)
[20:47] <@TensLOTRO> Also, we are currently planning on giving out a new mount for the completion of Book 15 of The Shadows of Angmar Epic Story.

[20:48] <@Elm> *Hades* Hi, can you tell us more about the new "capture the flag" feature coming in the Ettenmoors, and what kind of buffs/debuffs we can expect from this feature, will they be similar to the current hotspot buffs?
[20:48] <@OrionTurbine> Debuffs? No longer. Except for dread (someday hope as well). One of the major changes to monster play is the inclusion of new "capture the flag"-like mechanic. I add the -like because it is not wholly traditional capture the flag.
[20:48] <@OrionTurbine> Our intention with the system is to provide some greater reward to players for engaging in monster play. To that end we are doing the following:
[20:48] <@OrionTurbine> Capturing your artifact and the enemy artifact will provide benefits to all Free People players within Eriador. Only Eriador and to the exclusion of the Ettenmoors.
[20:48] <@OrionTurbine> Controlling your artifact will enhance your "home Tower" designated by location; Lugazag for creeps and Tirith Rhaw for freeps.
[20:49] <@OrionTurbine> That is a teaser. I will soon be crafting a string of developer diaries to explain, in greater detail, the intracacies of life in the new Ettenmoors.

[20:52] <@Elm> *Khelgar* To Graal, Will the warden remove the Champions off-tanking role, I quite like it, and turn us into DPS monkeys?
[20:52] <@Graal> Whatever the Warden can do doesn't change any of the abilities of the Champion. Champions can still fill off-tanking duties as well as they every could. Champions can do things Wardens can't and Wardens can do some things Champions can't. Its up to you guys to decide who should be tanking.

[20:53] <@Elm> *heikoh* What is the ratio of inside/outside locations in Mines of Moria? (as in: outside world / inside mines ratio)
[20:55] <@Keth_Turbine> Scenario is typing like crazy, this is going to be an awesome answer......
[20:55] <@Keth_Turbine> You may weep when you read it.
[20:55] <@Scenario> Eregion (which everyone will have access to) is all outside space. It's a great, wide-open space that has natural rolling feel to it.
[20:55] <@Scenario> Moria is a sprawling network of caves (of various sizes), subterranean cities and tunnels. There are a few points where players can find breaks in the rock that lead them outside (mostly out onto the slopes of Zirakzigil) but for the most part, you are experiencing a massive contiguous interior space.
[20:55] <@Scenario> And finally, you'll get to see portions of the Dimril Dale and Lothlorien. Obviously, the Elves of Lorien are protective of their lands and you will only have access to certain areas that they allow.

[20:56] <@Elm> *Arnir* Hey everyone! I'd like to know, how fast will we lvl-up from 50-60? Any significant slow-down?
[20:56] <@Keth_Turbine> We expect leveling from 50 to 60 to take about the same time it takes to get from 40 to 50.

[20:57] <@Elm> *brb* Hi Turbine, since the Runekeeper takes the sec. healer role and the warden the sec. offtank role, what will be given to the captain who had this roles until MoM?
[20:57] <@TensLOTRO> Hi *brb*! Once MoM goes live, depending on how they choose to specialize through both the use of their Traits and Legendary Items, Captains should be able to fill both a strong secondary healing role, and an off-tanking one; with their buffs still remaining the strongest in the game.
[20:58] <@TensLOTRO> Don't worry, you guys haven't been overlooked.
[21:01] <@TensLOTRO> Er... between healing and off-tanking, that should be an "or" (you'll need to work towards one or the other)

[21:01] <@Elm> *Linkay* you guys got anything big planned in terms of marketing the Expansion, coming our way soon, it's been real dry.
[21:02] <@Meghan_Turbine> Hey Linkay The marketing campaign for Moria is kicking off on both sides of the pond soon, with Leipzig (EU) and Penny Arcade Expo (North America) being just the beginning. You'll be seeing Moria everywhere very soon.

[21:05] <@Elm> That will wrap it up for tonight. Thanks for coming! You can join #lotro to chat more about the game. The log for tonightâs chat will be up shortly on
[21:06] <@Scenario> Thanks for joining us tonight and sending us all your questions. Take it easy and we'll see you all in Moria!
[21:06] <@Meghan_Turbine> Thanks everyone for coming tonight. We'll see you at the next chat! GREAT questions tonight, by the way!
[21:06] <@Jalessa> See you in the 'Moors!
[21:06] <@Keth_Turbine> And remember:
[21:06] <@Keth_Turbine> If you need me, let me know, gonna be around.
[21:06] <@Keth_Turbine> If you've got no place to go, if you're feeling down.
[21:06] <@Keth_Turbine> If you're all alone when the pretty birds have flown.
[21:06] <@Keth_Turbine> Honey I'm still free.
[21:06] <@Keth_Turbine> Take a chance on me.
[21:06] <@OrionTurbine> Thanks for coming everyone! See you soon!
[21:06] <@Amaurea> Tank you for taking part in this month's developer chat, if your question didn't get answered this time then be sure to bring it to the next one. I'd like to give a massive thank you to the Turbine developers ans Stratics for their support and attendance. See you next time!
[21:06] <@TensLOTRO> Thanks everyone! Look forward to more MoM info coming out over the upcoming weeks!
[21:07] <@Meghan_Turbine> Night everyone!