Free-to-Play “AAA” Lord of the Rings MMO in the Works

Megalith

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Los Angeles-based developer Athlon Games announced this week it would be teaming up with an as-of-yet-unnamed partner for a new free-to-play Lord of the Rings MMO. It isn’t yet known how the PC and console title, which is said to be a prequel taking place before the events of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, will differ from Standing Stone Games' 2007 The Lord of the Rings Online MMO, which is still alive and well.

...it had made the decision to pursue the game, "in light of the resurgence of interest in The Lord of the Rings IP". That's presumably in reference to the fact that Amazon Studios is currently developing a new five-season, $1billion USD Lord of the Rings television series, which is due to enter production next year with an estimated 2021 start date. Releasing a video game to coincide with the TV show's launch would certainly seem to make good business sense.
 

sfsuphysics

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I think you put your quotes around the wrong term, should be "Free-to-Play" AAA Lord of the Rings MMO in the works.

Because there would be literally zero way it wouldn't have a pay to win side of it.
 

Lakados

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I think you put your quotes around the wrong term, should be "Free-to-Play" AAA Lord of the Rings MMO in the works.

Because there would be literally zero way it wouldn't have a pay to win side of it.
There are lots of ways to do free cosmetic upgrades that don’t make a game P2W. Limit arena PvP content to an arbitrary amount per week and have people pay for unlocks if they want more, same with Raiding content. Players always get worked up on how their characters look so cosmetic packs for hair, accessories, clothes always sell well. Weapon skins and textures are easy enough, you can do the same with races, everybody gets human but you can unlock the others for a small fee. Limiting the number of character slots or bag space and using unlocks to expand those, offering paid name changes, all these things aren’t P2W but work at generating revenue in a good game.
 
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M76

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Free to play is only an euphemism for Free to Fail. Pay to Play.
 

Dekoth-E-

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There are lots of ways to do free cosmetic upgrades that don’t make a game P2W. Limit arena PvP content to an arbitrary amount per week and have people pay for unlocks if they want more, same with Raiding content. Players always get worked up on how their characters look so cosmetic packs for hair, accessories, clothes always sell well. Weapon skins and textures are easy enough, you can do the same with races, everybody gets human but you can unlock the others for a small fee. Limiting the number of character slots or bag space and using unlocks to expand those, offering paid name changes, all these things aren’t P2W but work at generating revenue in a good game.

You are right..there are lots of ways. Unfortunately in the world of Free to play MMO's, that is almost never the case that the devs choose to use these things. There is a 99% chance that it will be pay 2 win.
 
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I think path of exile does a really good job. One of the few who do things right.

But even then, not perfect (perfect is impossible), you really have to pay for their inventory tabs if you really want to get deep into trading and selling in order to amass enough wealth to pay for the most elite items (that or get lucky or put in a lot of time).

Still, small caveat, but POE is among the best for free-to-play models.
 
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Araxie

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Free to play is only an euphemism for Free to Fail. Pay to Play.

Why? LOTRO its actually 100% free to play, you can purchase with real money the game content quest and expansion packs to advance faster? Yes, however everything it's still obtainable via in game progression and farming.. you can pay for the VIP pass to unlock everything? Yes, and still the gamewill be far from pay to win as no item in the store bring any advantage over other players who choose to not spend any money. It's a great system in my opinion as the game is still alive despite all the years.
 

jpcahn1

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Why? LOTRO its actually 100% free to play, you can purchase with real money the game content quest and expansion packs to advance faster? Yes, however everything it's still obtainable via in game progression and farming.. you can pay for the VIP pass to unlock everything? Yes, and still the gamewill be far from pay to win as no item in the store bring any advantage over other players who choose to not spend any money. It's a great system in my opinion as the game is still alive despite all the years.
Exactly. LOTRO is an excellent game with lots of quality content. This is a cash grab.
 

Madoc

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Why? LOTRO its actually 100% free to play, you can purchase with real money the game content quest and expansion packs to advance faster? Yes, however everything it's still obtainable via in game progression and farming.. you can pay for the VIP pass to unlock everything? Yes, and still the gamewill be far from pay to win as no item in the store bring any advantage over other players who choose to not spend any money. It's a great system in my opinion as the game is still alive despite all the years.
Actually, expansions and even classes are still behind a paywall. The way the cash shop is woven into the UI makes it horribly immersion-breaking as well. Being a VIP doesn't prevent the cash shop from being shoved into your face on a regular basis.

The reason LotRO is still alive is because those who play it are very committed towards it -- the ones that are left, that is. I don't see it ever *gaining* much in the way of players, but I doubt it'll lose much unless SSG makes some serious missteps.
 

M76

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Why? LOTRO its actually 100% free to play, you can purchase with real money the game content quest and expansion packs to advance faster? Yes, however everything it's still obtainable via in game progression and farming.. you can pay for the VIP pass to unlock everything? Yes, and still the gamewill be far from pay to win as no item in the store bring any advantage over other players who choose to not spend any money. It's a great system in my opinion as the game is still alive despite all the years.
My idea of fun is not farming.
 

DocNo

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I think path of exile does a really good job. One of the few who do things right.

But even then, not perfect (perfect is impossible), you really have to pay for their inventory tabs if you really want to get deep into trading and selling in order to amass enough wealth to pay for the most elite items (that or get lucky or put in a lot of time).

I don't have a problem with that. It's actually a pretty good model - you're paying for convenience. And if the game is really good you should be willing to support the publisher at least a little.
 

DrBorg

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These farming games are On-the-Job Training for a boring job.

They look for people like that.

:)
 

knowom

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Great they've already milked dry Star Wars, Transformers, and every Marvel Comic idea so why not waterdown LOTR as well.
 

MavericK

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The only thing in that description I actually like the sound of is "Lord of the Rings".
 

singe_101

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Imagine Warframe combat but with orcs being cleaved instead of Grineer. But that won't happen.
 
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