Obviously in the past 24+ hours, the LOTRO community has exploded into a frenzy. Here, I’m going to summarize the ideas and reactions that the community has been experiencing the last 24 hours or so.
More or less, the community has been divided into two camps: Those for the F2P model and those against it. Just like political parties there are moderates and extremists and lots of arguing back and forth either way. Here’s the two views:
- Pro F2P:
- Current subscribers have it good because of the immediate VIP status and the perks we receive because of it
- F2P = more money for Turbine which = more content for us!
- Anti F2P:
- F2P de-values the money that current subscribers have put into the game
- Paying for items in the LOTRO Store will de-value earned items in-game
These are just some of the ideas of course, but these are the ones I have seen cited most frequently.
Regardless of where people stand on the F2P issue, all or most members seem to be concerned about two things: the new players that will be attracted to the game and the lack of content until the ‘Fall’.
LOTRO is famous for its high level of mature players and its generally friendly community, especially compared to other games like World of Warcraft. One worry that many people have is that by going F2P, an influx of more immature players will arrive at the game and destroy our proud community. This is not an unfounded claim as many free MMOs are known for having a younger and sometimes immature community. However, there are already efforts by our current community to encourage new players to adopt the accepting, mature mind-set that the current LOTRO players seem to have.
One is this plea from Mordor or Bust: PLEASE Stop the Elitism! It basically encourages our community to not act rudely towards new players, kind of like the Golden Rule: Act to others as you would be treated.
There is also the LOTRO New Player Relations (LNPR) Project: This is a draft of suggestions for people on how to treat and help new players in the game in order to garner their interest in the game and teach new players that being mature and helpful is how we do things in LOTRO.
The other issue concerning current players is the lack of content until ‘Fall’. This is problematic for a few reasons.
- Our last expansion, Siege of Mirkwood, was deemed ‘small’ by many and kept some entertained for mere hours before they claimed they had ‘done everything’ in the expansion. I personally know someone who hit level 65 only eight hours after it launched and I’m sure others did it sooner.
- Our latest content update, V3B1, was also quite small by some as it included only one Epic Book and the revamp of Volume One into soloable content.
- If you count V3B1 as our latest content update (which went live on March 1), that means that if ‘Fall’ means September, that is 7 months since the last content update. Usually for Turbine though, Fall means November or December, so that is nine or 10 months without content, Summer Fest not included. That would be the longest we have ever gone without an update
So there you have it. A quick summation of the arguments that have arisen in the past 24 hours.