The US customers will be getting the Shores of Evendim - first free content update for LOTRO - today. The great thing about this patch must be the background story - I love it.
" * Dunedain of the North once inhabited the lands of Evendim. In fact, it is here that the capital of Arnor, Annuminas is built by Elendil after the fall of Numenor.
* The great city sprawls along the southern shore and islands of Lake Evendim, or Nenuial as it is sometimes called.
* At some point the city was abandoned by the Dunedain of the North, although when this happened is not spelled out in the text of The Lord of the Rings. We are proposing, though, that it fell in the year 861, when the kingdom of Arnor was sundered into three realms: Arthedain, Cardolan and Rhudaur.
* The reason for this sundering involves a dispute between the three sons of Earendur. There is no record of what this dispute was about, but we are proposing that the dispute involved the actual abandonment of Annúminas..
* Since the city did not fall in war, but was abandoned, many of its ruins remain nearly intact and rumors of great wealth are told throughout Eriador. This attracts many unsavory types to Evendim.
* Angmar is not ignorant of Annuminas, and has sent a few scouts to discern if there is anything of value to them.
* At the same time, in Rivendell the Fellowship continues its preparations to leave and Aragorn decides that now is the time to re-forge Narsil. For the light to be returned to this blade, a great gem, long since missing from the hilt, must be replaced. Such a gem may reside in the tombs of Annuminas."
The patch notes are out on the US forums. Readers should grab a drink and a snack, because it's quite the collection of additions, tweaks, and fixes! The notes are in 3 parts and can be found starting here with the first part: http://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?t=67623
Turbine continues with their "Characters of Middle-earth" series introducing Legolas and Gimli this time around - if you don't know who these two guys are you must have been buried in a hole somewhere. Very pretty concept art in Turbine's page nevertheless.
WarCry reviewed LOTRO and gave it a 621 out of 82. The craziest game review score I have ever seen. You can read the article here
In other LOTRO related news ... The hot topic in town was the interview Jeff Steefel, LOTRO producer, gave to eurogamer.net , in which he talked about gold selling services and his views on the subject. This was interpreted by many in the gaming community as if he was hinting that Turbine and Codemasters are considering to allow or even introduce such service in the future. Outrage caused by this speculation spanned not only LOTRO related sites but I think people have been a bit too quick on their criticism because Jeff stated in a recent interview for 1UP that this is not, and never will be, the case for LOTRO and that he was talking in general on what the state of the industry is and what future might bring for the industry overall.
Beleglin's opinion on the subject is that we should burn the gold sellers villages and stuff ... but I wouldn't take notice of his opinions if I were you ... his ability to back his opinions with arguments comes down to saying "YOU KNOW I'M RIGHT" and than running of to a corner mumbling to himself ...