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  1. #901
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    Quote Originally Posted by miriadel View Post
    I do not expect things like mobs to have anything new but a palette swap at best. Including the corsairs
    Where it works I'm fine with it, so fine with the corsairs. Or boars... if they fit the biome..... But honestly, if you're right and they don't actually intend to commit to these new biomes including creatures, then... ummm... no comment. South is South and we expect South. It's not Mordor or Gundabad where you can reuse plenty of creatures models, with one-off brand new additions (like Sulokil and Ukrash were) and call it a day

  2. #902
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    it all depends on how much the new assets will cost to build. They'll have to save money by sacrificing something, I feel like it's inevitable, especially with other expensive things in the works like the new class that will come with the expac

  3. #903
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arnand_the_Fox View Post
    I'd assume next year would be them connecting Umbar to the rest of Gondor..
    Not necessarily, I recall asking Scenario on one of his Casual strolls about this subject and I've noticed - he's actually very honest when answering questions about these particular topics: because I also asked him about using the Mordor/Mirkwood dayfile trick for a non dawnless Gondor and he said they'd never use that technique - they'd just create new alternate landscapes for it & what do we have coming now? A new Gondor without the dawnless sky & presumably upgraded massively (I hope at least), so there is a lot that can be gleaned from these answers if you listen carefully. Anyhow, I also asked him a question about "Would they use the Eryn Lasgalen unconnected landmass technique again & just build out from it later?" I asked this because I was trying to get them to verify if it was Umbar they were working on as my suspicions had led me to believe, so from his answer - we can presume (unless he was lying, which I doubt because these were somewhat non-related questions) they are building at least a full path to Umbar (whatever machination that takes).

    So we should expect a Central, Eastern Gondor non dawnless, possibly largely improved (certainly where it connects to Southguard/Northwest Harondor at least from another large clue Scenario mentioned regarding looking at a rebuilt area which likely meant S Ithilien) in the Summer time & the Umbar city itself & Near Harad (at least partial region) with a likely Southwest Harondor connecting to the Southguard/NW Harondor around Nov/Dec maybe, unless it gets delayed.

    Orion did say they are being ambitious, and they usually do 3 medium to large landmasses per year, so I don't think it's unrealistic. But it depends how much work they put into an alternate Central and Eastern Gondor (and if that really does include Central Gondor as well, as they've implied).

    Quote Originally Posted by Arnand_the_Fox View Post
    The main jungles of Harad are so far south it would take like 4-5 maps worth just to even begin getting close to them, and I doubt SSG is going to go that far south. More likely they will have part of the jungle spread up along the coast into lower Umbar.
    I wouldn't assume that. It could easily end up in some jungle. I'd assume Umbar has to be relatively close to some parts of it & bringing us that far South to Umbar leads to all kinds of possibilities & potentialities.



    Quote Originally Posted by TesalionLortus View Post
    That could be a nice way to avoid all these fishbowls everywhere... and like I said, I'm kinda tired of elevations everywhere on all sides...
    As far as elevation goes, I wouldn't assume its all below sea level, it depends on the type of desert. And even in the archetypal Arabian desert, it is very mountainous in many places (especialy in places like Oman) and these kinds of deserts are also known for large sand dunes, that can easily block us from exploration intelligently.

    I'm really curious if SSG are going to Expand parts of Central Gondor & Upper Lebenin, possibly Lossarnach to make the terrain more accurate & add a pathway or two into the White Mountains, to undo some of those mistakes in the past & to appease us Arda cartophiles.
    Last edited by k40rne; Feb 01 2023 at 01:09 PM.
    “The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” Scientia Vincere Tenebras

  4. #904
    Quote Originally Posted by TesalionLortus View Post
    Oh yes, love these suggestions! I really really hope this is something we're going to see that refreshes the game and makes these lands different. Not just more of the same same fauna and flora with same same models.
    Yah! It is whole huge yet unexplored continent. I rather have them divide between multiple big expansions than try to compress all in 1 small area. Only what i described can make enough material for 4 big quest packs territories. Probably the 1st expansion that is announced will include only the Seashore communities & wildlife, a bit of the river mouth swampy areas & to the south the border of the territory could let see the dessert dunes from distance but will not include that part yet.
    Last edited by YamydeAragon; Feb 01 2023 at 11:10 AM.

  5. #905
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    Quote Originally Posted by miriadel View Post
    it all depends on how much the new assets will cost to build. They'll have to save money by sacrificing something, I feel like it's inevitable, especially with other expensive things in the works like the new class that will come with the expac
    They have a massive budget thanks to the E7 company's plans & this expansion will make plenty of profit. I think it comes more down to who does the work (they really should hire more artists)., but of course - that requires the newcomers to understand SSG's LOTRO world, having the skills & the creativity to be effective, so that's where the shortfall would likely be.
    “The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” Scientia Vincere Tenebras

  6. #906
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    It would be great to see also some more fantasy animals. Sandseals, cactushuorns or sandtrolls would be cool to see. Different kind of wolves or something will be fine, but I hope to see camals, new insects, ostriches and coyote too.

  7. #907
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    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    As far as elevation goes, I wouldn't assume its all below sea level, it depends on the type of desert. And even in the archetypal Arabian desert, it is very mountainous in many places (especialy in places like Oman) and these kinds of deserts are also known for large sand dunes, that can easily block us from exploration intelligently.
    Well, of course some elevations would be there, depending on the idea, and some of these may be used for borders too. But I would really welcome more open landscapes that aren't ridden with mountains and sizeable elevations blocking your view in every direction (or outright elevation walls, like the one in CardoSwan)


    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    I'm really curious if SSG are going to Expand parts of Central Gondor & Upper Lebenin, possibly Lossarnach to make the terrain more accurate & add a pathway or two into the White Mountains, to undo some of those mistakes in the past & to appease us Arda cartophiles.
    I like the world being consistent though, so I sure hope if they do something like that it doesn't look different/wholly reinvented from what was there in Gondor During War. Say, if they open up a pathway leading into one of these valleys, it would also be nice if they at least added some cosmetic villages on the old landscape that can be seen from distance, even if the valley isn't traversable. Anyway, if that's happening, the Blue Skied Eastern and/or Central Gondor... I guess they have plenty of terrain to work with... and a little-to-no good premise for quest content... why would they add even more terrain? So I stand by what I said earlier, that cosmetic additions are less time consuming/so better probably and can be easily copied over into the old version of the landscape too, to be visible there too. Just add some villages in the distance in some places, hinting that there is more in these valleys, plus villages or cities visible in Belfalas, between the housing area and other areas (right now there are already some ruined towers there... but that's not exactly hinting at more civilization and expanse of Gondor)



    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    I think it comes more down to who does the work (they really should hire more artists)., but of course - that requires the newcomers to understand SSG's LOTRO world, having the skills & the creativity to be effective, so that's where the shortfall would likely be.
    Well, I have no idea how it works internally, but maybe they could use a freelance contractor and that's it - give them a simple list of things they need (with self-evident stuff like antelopes and lions, that's not exactly LOTRO world specific). But this begs the question whether all they need is just a model with somehow universal animations and they can easily take it from there or... there is some insane learning curve regarding the types of formats and animation data their engine works with and the entire thing needs to be created from scratch with all of that in mind

  8. #908
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    Quote Originally Posted by TesalionLortus View Post
    Well, of course some elevations would be there, depending on the idea, and some of these may be used for borders too. But I would really welcome more open landscapes that aren't ridden with mountains and sizeable elevations blocking your view in every direction (or outright elevation walls, like the one in CardoSwan)
    Yeah, given Scenario's hatred of the fishbowl, it should be safe to assume we will get new innovative ways of cutting off exploration intelligently.

    Quote Originally Posted by TesalionLortus View Post
    I like the world being consistent though, so I sure hope if they do something like that it doesn't look different/wholly reinvented from what was there in Gondor During War. Say, if they open up a pathway leading into one of these valleys, it would also be nice if they at least added some cosmetic villages on the old landscape that can be seen from distance, even if the valley isn't traversable. Anyway, if that's happening, the Blue Skied Eastern and/or Central Gondor... I guess they have plenty of terrain to work with... and a little-to-no good premise for quest content... why would they add even more terrain? So I stand by what I said earlier, that cosmetic additions are less time consuming/so better probably and can be easily copied over into the old version of the landscape too, to be visible there too. Just add some villages in the distance in some places, hinting that there is more in these valleys, plus villages or cities visible in Belfalas, between the housing area and other areas (right now there are already some ruined towers there... but that's not exactly hinting at more civilization and expanse of Gondor)
    Consistent yes, but it needs to be consistent with what it should have been too, & by that I meant just expanding the distance between coast and mountains so it isn't stilll super compressed. I don't expect much here anyway - just a bit of clean up to bring it to the modern standards of their world crafting abilities - a variation on mobs and the wonderful daylight, but we could be pleasantly surprised too. (they certainly have the opportunity to rehone it a bit).

    Also, you tend to gripe about these things, like you were deadset against us going to Umbar (because you didn't think SSG would do it justice yet) when I used to argue that was the likely new area, but now you seem very content & excited with it. So i'm sure whatever they do, we'll be fine with it, as long as it's under the new way they manage things.


    Quote Originally Posted by TesalionLortus View Post
    Well, I have no idea how it works internally, but maybe they could use a freelance contractor and that's it - give them a simple list of things they need (with self-evident stuff like antelopes and lions, that's not exactly LOTRO world specific). But this begs the question whether all they need is just a model with somehow universal animations and they can easily take it from there or... there is some insane learning curve regarding the types of formats and animation data their engine works with and the entire thing needs to be created from scratch with all of that in mind
    Yes, this is my fear, the insane learning curve, & other skills needed to be effective. They are a tightly knit crew, so its hard to see them contracting that stuff out, but who knows.
    “The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” Scientia Vincere Tenebras

  9. #909
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    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    Not necessarily, I recall asking Scenario on one of his Casual strolls about this subject and I've noticed - he's actually very honest when answering questions about these particular topics: because I also asked him about using the Mordor/Mirkwood dayfile trick for a non dawnless Gondor and he said they'd never use that technique - they'd just create new alternate landscapes for it & what do we have coming now? A new Gondor without the dawnless sky & presumably upgraded massively (I hope at least), so there is a lot that can be gleaned from these answers if you listen carefully. Anyhow, I also asked him a question about "Would they use the Eryn Lasgalen unconnected landmass technique again & just build out from it later?" I asked this because I was trying to get them to verify if it was Umbar they were working on as my suspicions had led me to believe, so from his answer - we can presume (unless he was lying, which I doubt because these were somewhat non-related questions) they are building at least a full path to Umbar (whatever machination that takes).

    So we should expect a Central, Eastern Gondor non dawnless, possibly largely improved (certainly where it connects to Southguard/Northwest Harondor at least from another large clue Scenario mentioned regarding looking at a rebuilt area which likely meant S Ithilien) in the Summer time & the Umbar city itself & Near Harad region with a likely Southwest Harondor connecting to the Southguard/NW Harondor around Nov/Dec maybe, unless it gets delayed.

    Orion did say they are being ambitious, and they usually do 3 medium to large landmasses per year, so I don't think it's unrealistic. But it depends how much work they put into an alternate Central and Eastern Gondor (and if that really does include Central Gondor as well, as they've implied).
    I would be exceedingly surprised if the Umbar release has not only Umbar, but also Southguard/Harondor

    Harondor itself is larger than Swanfleet and Cardolan combined. Doing that, plus Umbar, but the desert between Harondor and Umbar, all in one release would be akin to a release the size of 3 Gorgoroths. even if they have massively streamlined thier landscape generation technology that doesn't mean its easier to make the level of quests needed to fill in that entire area, even if they use a Swanfleet/Cardolan level scattered/content light path.

    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    I wouldn't assume that. It could easily end up in some jungle. I'd assume Umbar has to be relatively close to some parts of it & bringing us that far South to Umbar leads to all kinds of possibilities & potentialities.
    I generally would. At the rate they've gone in the last 15 years of LOTRO, it would take another 4-6 years to finish off the remaining major paths in a most minimal way.
    • North Path(Rhun plot) - Middle Mirkwood, Fields of Celduin, Barding Lands, Dorwinion
    • South Path(Umbar/Harad plot) - Gondor(non-dawnless), Harondor, Harad desert, Umbar
    • Mordor Path(Mordor plot) - Nurn, Lithlad
    • Eriador Path(ending the books) - Shire(scouring), Grey Havens

    Taking into account things like the other parts of the Grey Havens, South Farthing, a likely trip into Forodwaith, that adds another year or two. Then we have to think about side areas in the parts of Middle Earth we already have acess to like Western Enedwaith, Minhiriath, the Brown Lands, the Emyn Muil, Anfalas, the White Mountains, Tol Falas, etc

    It would take another 15 years to just finish all of that. They really don't have the time, much less the narrative reason, to go deep in the southern Jungles of Harad if they actually want to like, you know, finish the game.
    Last edited by Arnand_the_Fox; Feb 01 2023 at 12:29 PM.

  10. #910
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arnand_the_Fox View Post
    I would be exceedingly surprised if the Umbar release has not only Umbar, but also Southguard/Harondor

    Harondor itself is larger than Swanfleet and Cardolan combined. Doing that, plus Umbar, but the desert between Harondor and Umbar, all in one release would be akin to a release the size of 3 Gorgoroths. even if they have massively streamlined thier landscape generation technology that doesn't mean its easier to make the level of quests needed to fill in that entire area, even if they use a Swanfleet/Cardolan level scattered/content light path.
    Yes, that may be the case, but they've already given us clues they are building from S ithilien & I said Southguard/ Northwest Harondor (obviously Harondor is massive & they wouldn't include it all unless they just had vast amounts of barren land. I said a pathway through based upon what they already said/implied (also they'll compress a lot of this), clearly not give us the entire regions, just a sampling.

    Quote Originally Posted by Arnand_the_Fox;8175003
    I generally would. At the rate they've gone in the last 15 years of LOTRO, it would take another 4-6 years to finish off the remaining major paths in a most minimal way.
    [LIST
    [*]North Path(Rhun plot) - Middle Mirkwood, Fields of Celduin, Barding Lands, Dorwinion[*]South Path(Umbar/Harad plot) - Gondor(non-dawnless), Harondor, Harad desert, Umbar[*]Mordor Path(Mordor plot) - Nurn, Lithlad[*]Eriador Path(ending the books) - Shire(scouring), Grey Havens[/LIST]
    Taking into account things like the other parts of the Grey Havens, South Farthing, a likely trip into Forodwaith, that adds another year or two. Then we have to think about side areas in the parts of Middle Earth we already have acess to like Western Enedwaith, Minhiriath, the Brown Lands, the Emyn Muil, Anfalas, the White Mountains, Tol Falas, etc[


    It would take another 15 years to just finish all of that. They really don't have the time, much less the narrative reason, to go deep in the southern Jungles of Harad if they actually want to like, you know, finish the game.
    First off, they don't seem to have any intention of finishing off the game. So I'll keep my mind open and Umbar could have a sampling of jungle connected to it. I don't know what story arc they plan, but it could easily stray further south when we get more into the Haradrim world and certainly eastward over the course of the next few years.

    You're basing your opinion solely off old technology/constraints & under a different parent company that didn't invest much for ages. I don't expect them to finish any of those storylines off that you mentioned, any time soon. They even left us wondering about Horn, Nona & Corudan entirely for years, so there's little consistency going back to old stories until they're good and ready. We just have to go with the flow story-wise & if they decide to take the opportunity while down there that they want to send us to major cities in near Harad or far Harad, they will do so.

    It seems they have more of an ad hoc approach of just enjoying whatever story arc they are working on & not worrying about the future post that arc - until they have to plan for it. That's why we had a filling in the gaps year (and artists probably were busy building a lot of new assets too), while they devised the new story.
    “The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” Scientia Vincere Tenebras

  11. #911
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    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    Yeah, given Scenario's hatred of the fishbowl, it should be safe to assume we will get new innovative ways of cutting off exploration intelligently.
    Scenario is awesome, but I get the impression he loves mountains and elevations I think his favorite was creation of the Vales, if I remember correctly. Oh, and judged by recent happenings I think he would also turn all of older places and ruins into outright kickass fortresses if he could (even though not everything needs that treatment). I used to take his "if we designed this today we would do it differently" comments from the Strolls with a grain of salt, like yeah, probably, I get it, so if you were to create these places and entire game content associated with them anew today from scratch, right? Not the "if they give me permission and opportunity I will have such places redone with completely different conception in mind, using different assets and looking as strong as Barad-dur, you know, as an alternate look on a different map or instanced space" Growing the world and showing off how well they can do it now (or how differently they can do it now) isn't exactly the peak of it all, in a growing world you also gotta show you know how to maintain it. Updates are fine of course as long as they're consistent and don't drastically change things. I mean, if that was supposed to be LOTRO 2.0 project or remaster from scratch, then OK, I can take some vastly different alternative takes, but when it's supposed to be one growing world then I wanna it to feel like it is


    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    Consistent yes, but it needs to be consistent with what it should have been too, & by that I meant just expanding the distance between coast and mountains so it isn't stilll super compressed.
    Which is a design fault from back then (one might say the same about the compressed Shire) but I don't think having magically vastly different design or distances for places we've been to before (and some players still are traversing through) is anywhere near good. Places should match. And I doubt they can increase that distant in the old one - due to content in it - so better to leave it as is. We can live with it, I just hope they learnt from this going forward



    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    Also, you tend to gripe about these things, like you were deadset against us going to Umbar (because you didn't think SSG would do it justice yet) when I used to argue that was the likely new area, but now you seem very content & excited with it.
    The "not sure if they can do it justice" was mostly due to lack of boats and because of timeline concerns, since Frodo is still at MT (which still applies, but well, I just hope they're not going nuts here with the Elessar going to war or something...). I considered Umbar "the crown jewel" of what one can do with shoreline landscape design if they ever had boats in LOTRO, so this was a huge factor that played into my pessimism, alongside logical storyline factors - why do this now? why waste it now, in that case, if the story doesn't immediately needs it? How was I supposed to know... they'll literally change their mind about implementing boats "just like that" whereas they always framed it as somehow problematic and not desirable due to some "system" concerns and such, making it sound like it's a huge endeavor and some improvements under the hood that can take years for them to be even able to start considering it So that changes a lot, if they'll actually have these boats and make use of them! And hopefully the story turns out ok and agreeable on the timeline 2 months after Pelennor.

  12. #912
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    TBH, if they say expanded Central Gondor northward into those vales or the like, they'd probably reflect those landscape changes on the "Dawnless Day" side as well.

    Precedent: Nanduhirion / Dimrill Dale vs. Azanulbizar.

    Granted, the pre-battle version probably wouldn't have any quest content added to it, and rightfully so, but it might have mobs. I'd be fine with it.

    Also, TBH, I would've loved an Ered Nimrais zone between Far Anorien, Central Gondor, and Eastern Gondor behind Minas Tirith. They could do it in theory since the landscape exists between the regions and isn't spliced between territories. Obviously, it couldn't really touch the parts of the mountains closer to the Eastfold on the northern side due to territory reasons - or at least not without a portal. But they did it with the Misties, to an extent with the Grey Mountains, and they could do it there as well if they wanted to.

    I'd definitely prefer having more traversable places than not - and having the ability to climb more mountains in Central Gondor and follow those rivers would give the zone a closer reflection of Tolkien's map a lot better, in my view. I'd much prefer the "Azanulbizar" approach to leaving it just as a relatively narrow strip of land where, honestly, some creeks in Yondershire feel longer than the River Gilraen and so forth. I - want - to climb north of where Roamingstar is northwest of Linhir. I want to see that huge mountain lake the Ringlo River and Vale pours out of. I want to climb up to some northern Central Gondor mountain holds. Central Gondor really didn't have it's own "hub"; we kept having to use Dol Amroth. No vault. No AH. So perhaps a mountain fortress far north of, say, Pelargir would be good to provide those services in the actual zone. I could see some Gondorians holding-out - and since the Scourge is focused on the coast, the most keeping the Gondorians hemmed-in would be all those Haradrim riders on the plains.

    They could even build-in some mountain passes between some of Central Gondor's vales and give some impressive views of Pelargir, Tolfalas, and the Bay - to help the zone not feel as "Lone-lands" or "Gap-of-Rohan-ish."

    By all means, Scenario, if it's in the cards, please do consider "Cardo-swanning" Central Gondor and copying it over pre-battle and after-battle.

    Cheers!
    Landroval player; I am Phantion on the forums only and do not have a corresponding character in-game with that name on any server. Cheers! :)

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  13. #913
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    Quote Originally Posted by TesalionLortus View Post
    Scenario is awesome, but I get the impression he loves mountains and elevations I think his favorite was creation of the Vales, if I remember correctly.
    Oh, and judged by recent happenings I think he would also turn all of older places and ruins into outright kickass fortresses if he could (even though not everything needs that treatment). I used to take his "if we designed this today we would do it differently" comments from the Strolls with a grain of salt, like yeah, probably, I get it, so if you were to create these places and entire game content associated with them anew today from scratch, right? Not the "if they give me permission and opportunity I will have such places redone with completely different conception in mind, using different assets and looking as strong as Barad-dur, you know, as an alternate look on a different map or instanced space" Growing the world and showing off how well they can do it now (or how differently they can do it now) isn't exactly the peak of it all, in a growing world you also gotta show you know how to maintain it. Updates are fine of course as long as they're consistent and don't drastically change things. I mean, if that was supposed to be LOTRO 2.0 project or remaster from scratch, then OK, I can take some vastly different alternative takes, but when it's supposed to be one growing world then I wanna it to feel like it is
    He definitely loves playing with elevation, but that's not necessarily mountains and valleys. There's a whole host of topography that can be implemented as you know.

    Oh, it's best to take everything with a grain of salt, but that doesn't mean you can't glean a good understanding from what they are keen to talk about (especially from seemingly unrelated questions). Didn't he also craft Eregion? That still is one of the better update zones in my opinion.

    I'm not so sure he wants to overdo everything, although being a game, it kind of has to be grand and unique at times, otherwise it could be pretty boring. This is specifically about Carn-dum towers it'd seem.

    Quote Originally Posted by TesalionLortus View Post
    Which is a design fault from back then (one might say the same about the compressed Shire) but I don't think having magically vastly different design or distances for places we've been to before (and some players still are traversing through) is anywhere near good. Places should match. And I doubt they can increase that distant in the old one - due to content in it - so better to leave it as is. We can live with it, I just hope they learnt from this going forward
    One in which they have the perfect opportunity to rectify, but obviously there are massive time constraints too. I would also like to see the Gondorian fortresses/cities cleaned up, they are far too uniform & lets not even get into the saturated wings on towers. I don't know, it depends how complicated the copy process is. The other you can't see very well because the dawnless sky, so if that became the new traversible Gondor, i'm sure you'd be fine with it, if it was better proportioned.

    The Shire has been amended partially, with the inclusion of Yondershire & that was always less problematic too.

    Quote Originally Posted by TesalionLortus View Post
    The "not sure if they can do it justice" was mostly due to lack of boats and because of timeline concerns, since Frodo is still at MT (which still applies, but well, I just hope they're not going nuts here with the Elessar going to war or something...). I considered Umbar "the crown jewel" of what one can do with shoreline landscape design if they ever had boats in LOTRO, so this was a huge factor that played into my pessimism, alongside logical storyline factors - why do this now? why waste it now, in that case, if the story doesn't immediately needs it? How was I supposed to know... they'll literally change their mind about implementing boats "just like that" whereas they always framed it as somehow problematic and not desirable due to some "system" concerns and such, making it sound like it's a huge endeavor and some improvements under the hood that can take years for them to be even able to start considering it So that changes a lot, if they'll actually have these boats and make use of them! And hopefully the story turns out ok and agreeable on the timeline 2 months after Pelennor.
    Well Scenario was talking fondly about all these waterways & what he'd love to do for awhile, so we can see he really was keen to do some form of it. But, we still have no idea what this will look like, it may still only be in concept being further discussed too. One thing we do know, it's officially on their radar, but we could be pleasantly surprised if they incorporate some nascent form with the Umbar expansion.
    “The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” Scientia Vincere Tenebras

  14. #914

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hierona View Post
    It would be great to see also some more fantasy animals. Sandseals, cactushuorns or sandtrolls would be cool to see. Different kind of wolves or something will be fine, but I hope to see camels, new insects, ostriches and coyote too.
    Suculent Huorn, Palm Tree Huorn & other huorn kinds that looks the local arborescent flora will be awesome! *Foresee Arborescent Fern Huorns for the Jungle parts on a much later update.

    Sandtrolls don't sound much in nature of those creatures, maybe Crystalized sand trolls (sorta like a translucent rock) & Sand Grims (evil spirits being the cause of sandstorms is actually part of the mythology of that area) will be awesome for the desert parts

    Coyote belong to America (Valinor?) so not fitted for Harad, but there are many other big wild canines species of that part of the world. Some of the still existing dog breeds are believed to descend of those wild dogs or from a common ancestor.
    Last edited by YamydeAragon; Feb 01 2023 at 02:22 PM.

  15. #915
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phantion View Post
    TBH, if they say expanded Central Gondor northward into those vales or the like, they'd probably reflect those landscape changes on the "Dawnless Day" side as well.

    Precedent: Nanduhirion / Dimrill Dale vs. Azanulbizar.
    Ahh, yes. There's already precedent, very good point

    Quote Originally Posted by Phantion View Post
    Also, TBH, I would've loved an Ered Nimrais zone between Far Anorien, Central Gondor, and Eastern Gondor behind Minas Tirith. They could do it in theory since the landscape exists between the regions and isn't spliced between territories. Obviously, it couldn't really touch the parts of the mountains closer to the Eastfold on the northern side due to territory reasons - or at least not without a portal. But they did it with the Misties, to an extent with the Grey Mountains, and they could do it there as well if they wanted to.

    They could even build-in some mountain passes between some of Central Gondor's vales and give some impressive views of Pelargir, Tolfalas, and the Bay - to help the zone not feel as "Lone-lands" or "Gap-of-Rohan-ish."
    That would be wonderful, we have seen some of the BTS ex dev stuff of someone coming out of those mountains and showing these views in a daytime scenario. Maybe in a few years in some gap filler it could be possible.

    Quote Originally Posted by Phantion View Post
    I'd definitely prefer having more traversable places than not - and having the ability to climb more mountains in Central Gondor and follow those rivers would give the zone a closer reflection of Tolkien's map a lot better, in my view. I'd much prefer the "Azanulbizar" approach to leaving it just as a relatively narrow strip of land where, honestly, some creeks in Yondershire feel longer than the River Gilraen and so forth. I - want - to climb north of where Roamingstar is northwest of Linhir. I want to see that huge mountain lake the Ringlo River and Vale pours out of. I want to climb up to some northern Central Gondor mountain holds.
    I guess we'll see in a few months if they undid their initial errors in Central Gondor, Lebenin & Lossarnach (I still hope they eventually go back to West Gondor too and clean that up.
    “The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” Scientia Vincere Tenebras

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phantion View Post
    TBH, if they say expanded Central Gondor northward into those vales or the like, they'd probably reflect those landscape changes on the "Dawnless Day" side as well.

    Precedent: Nanduhirion / Dimrill Dale vs. Azanulbizar.

    Granted, the pre-battle version probably wouldn't have any quest content added to it, and rightfully so, but it might have mobs. I'd be fine with it.
    I mean, sure! If that's the treatment then I certainly have no problem with it. Makes me just wonder whether there is time and how much time reflecting such changes may take. But yeah, I love love love what they did with Azanulbizar/Lothlorien - now that was consistent.

  17. #917
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    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    Yes, that may be the case, but they've already given us clues they are building from S ithilien & I said Southguard/ Northwest Harondor (obviously Harondor is massive & they wouldn't include it all unless they just had vast amounts of barren land. I said a pathway through based upon what they already said/implied (also they'll compress a lot of this), clearly not give us the entire regions, just a sampling.
    I would be very surprised if they don't give us all of Harondor when they release it. I mean.... have they ever not given us the entire zone when they released a zone? Its not like Gorogroth was only half of the actual Gorgoroth or anything.


    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    First off, they don't seem to have any intention of finishing off the game. So I'll keep my mind open and Umbar could have a sampling of jungle connected to it. I don't know what story arc they plan, but it could easily stray further south when we get more into the Haradrim world and certainly eastward over the course of the next few years.

    You're basing your opinion solely off old technology/constraints & under a different parent company that didn't invest much for ages. I don't expect them to finish any of those storylines off that you mentioned, any time soon. They even left us wondering about Horn, Nona & Corudan entirely for years, so there's little consistency going back to old stories until they're good and ready. We just have to go with the flow story-wise & if they decide to take the opportunity while down there that they want to send us to major cities in near Harad or far Harad, they will do so.

    It seems they have more of an ad hoc approach of just enjoying whatever story arc they are working on & not worrying about the future post that arc - until they have to plan for it. That's why we had a filling in the gaps year (and artists probably were busy building a lot of new assets too), while they devised the new story.
    Well first off they've said they have about 15 years worth of story ideas for LOTRO, which means they have story ideas for not only MQ continuations, but also alternate leveling areas, up to the game's natural narrative conclusion.

    Secondly, my opinion is based on everything that has been released up until this point, which includes stuff made under Trubine, and staff made under SSG. The change to SSg hasn't really increased the amount of content pushed out in any noticeable way.

    They had filling in the gaps year becuase they were trying t revamp the new player experience due to renewed interest in the IP from Rings of Power. That doesn't mean they're just making story arcs up on the fly, or not worrying about arcs past that.


    Quote Originally Posted by Phantion View Post
    Also, TBH, I would've loved an Ered Nimrais zone between Far Anorien, Central Gondor, and Eastern Gondor behind Minas Tirith. They could do it in theory since the landscape exists between the regions and isn't spliced between territories. Obviously, it couldn't really touch the parts of the mountains closer to the Eastfold on the northern side due to territory reasons - or at least not without a portal. But they did it with the Misties, to an extent with the Grey Mountains, and they could do it there as well if they wanted to.
    If we ever got a White Mountains zone I would assume it would be south of Isengard, south south-west of Edoras, and north of Anfalas, since that is where the label is for it on the map. Probably a level 90-100 ish zone tying into some post Helms Deep stuff, the dwarves of the 2-3 settlements we know are there, Sarumon's orcs in retreat, etc.
    Last edited by Arnand_the_Fox; Feb 02 2023 at 12:52 AM.

  18. #918
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arnand_the_Fox View Post
    I would be very surprised if they don't give us all of Harondor when they release it. I mean.... have they ever not given us the entire zone when they released a zone? Its not like Gorogroth was only half of the actual Gorgoroth or anything.
    Enedwaith, Ered Luin, Lebenin, Rohan, Ithilien, i'm sure there are more & that's not even counting the areas that had to be expanded upon - which is vast.

    They usually find a large piece of terrain to demarcate their initial borders.

    Quote Originally Posted by Arnand_the_Fox View Post
    Well first off they've said they have about 15 years worth of story ideas for LOTRO, which means they have story ideas for not only MQ continuations, but also alternate leveling areas, up to the game's natural narrative conclusion.
    It's a rough estimate, it could go more than 15 years, I would just take this with a grain of salt and assume they have this story arc & a rough idea for maybe 1 or 2 more following it & this one could take 2 or 3 years or more to play out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Arnand_the_Fox View Post
    Secondly, my opinion is based on everything that has been released up until this point, which includes stuff made under Trubine, and staff made under SSG. The change to SSg hasn't really increased the amount of content pushed out in any noticeable way.
    not SSG, that made little difference, what made the difference is Daybreak being bought by Eg7. This company seems to actually want to invest & there is a possibility they put in a good portion of $50 million into it's LOTRO IP.

    The new technology innovations & we have to assume there will be more that will follow that will streamline processes. Maybe they also release more landscape & less quests too, they've definitely played with the less story based quests & just kill x of wolves pop up, which obviously freed up a lot of writing time. I don't see things as staying static. SSG under Eg7 has probably the most freedom to build this world as they see fit in it's entire history.

    Quote Originally Posted by Arnand_the_Fox View Post
    They had filling in the gaps year becuase they were trying t revamp the new player experience due to renewed interest in the IP from Rings of Power. That doesn't mean they're just making story arcs up on the fly, or not worrying about arcs past that.
    I'm not saying they don't worry about the past arcs, but clearly they do things on a timescale they want & we just need to accept that.

    ROP is very likely what pushed them to do Umbar, they likely anticipated as I did - that ROP would include Umbar, the Rhun angle for next season was quite surprising.
    Last edited by k40rne; Feb 02 2023 at 09:20 AM.
    “The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” Scientia Vincere Tenebras

  19. #919
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    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    ROP is very likely what pushed them to do Umbar, they likely anticipated as I did - that ROP would include Umbar, the Rhun angle for next season was quite surprising.
    Very unlikely, do they work THAT far in advance? (So, before RoP came out, they would have to already be working on Umbar pretty extensively, not just thinking about it). RoP caused them to play around in Eregion in CardoSwan (to a small degree though, because they had no idea what this series is even gonna do). If they wanted to play that kind of promo game, then Rhun direction would make a lot more sense, set in stone immediately after the last ep of RoP. If RoP influenced that decision at all, then I would say it would be because RoP didn't gave us Umbar nor Harad nor anything decently Numenorean (which was a shocker) so maybe that's why they decided to do that :P alongside other reasons

  20. #920
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    We've had harmless little snakes for a long time. It would neat to encounter some big venomous monster snakes, in the appropriate biome.

    I'm wondering about a couple things, Scenario, if you see this and are up for answering.

    Could there maybe, hypothetically, someday be room for a village in that area north of Rushock Bog you didn't have time to fill in as part of Yondershire? I think that would be the one place left for Hardbottle, "in the stony northern section of the Shire" according to TolkienGateway. Though the Atlas of Middle-earth places it in Southfarthing, so perhaps you'll go by that.

    And any news on putting in more dock-masters? I remember something about you wanting to put them in Cardolan and Swanfleet someday, and I noticed some unoccupied docks are already in-game, waiting to be mastered. I keep hoping to see this with each Update 34.X that's come out.

  21. #921
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    We had small snakes but they seem pretty clunky.. small as they are. If you just resize them and that's it... wouldn't work probably. Large snakes that submerge under sand (the way cave claws do) would be pretty cool



    Quote Originally Posted by Gnagerwine View Post
    I noticed some unoccupied docks are already in-game, waiting to be mastered. I keep hoping to see this with each Update 34.X that's come out.
    Keep hoping to see NPCs who will just teleport you same way as you can with horse ones and travel skills? Nah, these docks are there for your own boat!

    But yeah, wouldn't hurt either way, and I remember this is something on Scenario's to-do-list. But maybe he just gotta wait a bit now... until boats are functioning... so you know, it's not just swift travel, but he may actually introduce a regular travel - with boats animated on rivers, using same method that our boat mount will utilize - same way as it's done for horse routes.

    Though I would be more excited for more connection points via teleports in places of the world where these are glaringly missing, especially when boats come into play, so can traverse the world without constant backtracking to lone chokepoints. For example, through lvl 75 Isengard to Rohan (same way you can do that from Flooded one) and from there Wildermore-Great River and connected to Amdan in Lothlorien via teleport. One should also be able to teleport from East Wall to Dead Marches and many other spots like it. PS: That reminds me... we would also need some teleports introduced on some rivers too, most likely, to make boat experience more pleasant in the future. Where it makes sense.
    Last edited by TesalionLortus; Feb 02 2023 at 12:06 PM.

  22. #922
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    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    Enedwaith, Ered Luin, Lebenin, Rohan, Ithilien, i'm sure there are more & that's not even counting the areas that had to be expanded upon - which is vast.

    They usually find a large piece of terrain to demarcate their initial borders.
    I'm quite sure you knew this isn't what I meant. There isn't a North Ithilien 1, and North Ithilien 2 map. Its divided up into logical sub regions, and those entire regions were released at once. Harondor is just one region, it doesn't have such a clear border.

    It's a rough estimate, it could go more than 15 years, I would just take this with a grain of salt and assume they have this story arc & a rough idea for maybe 1 or 2 more following it & this one could take 2 or 3 years or more to play out.
    There was nothing rough about it. They pretty clearly said they had 15 years worth of story ideas. And this just leads back to my original comment. Yeah, this story will likely take 2-3 to play out. Then theres is northern arc that takes the same amount of time. The Mordor arc, the return to Eriador/Ending of the quest arc, and then various alternate leveling maps we know they have ideas for. Which would be about.... 15ish years worth of content? Not exactly room to go into the kind of deep dive into the depths of Harad just to reach the Harad jungles.

    not SSG, that made little difference, what made the difference is Daybreak being bought by Eg7. This company seems to actually want to invest & there is a possibility they put in a good portion of $50 million into it's LOTRO IP.

    The new technology innovations & we have to assume there will be more that will follow that will streamline processes. Maybe they also release more landscape & less quests too, they've definitely played with the less story based quests & just kill x of wolves pop up, which obviously freed up a lot of writing time. I don't see things as staying static. SSG under Eg7 has probably the most freedom to build this world as they see fit in it's entire history.
    Putting money into the game doesn't magically change how much new content is put out unless the hire more staff specifically at the landscape and quest creation levels. All this means is more efforts put toward things like QoL fixes, and graphical improvements, within the team they currently have. And quest-lite areas work for some places sure, but you wouldn't expect that in the depth of Harad, in the middle of the Haradrim Kingdoms, and all that.

    I'm not saying they don't worry about the past arcs, but clearly they do things on a timescale they want & we just need to accept that.
    This was never in question.

    ROP is very likely what pushed them to do Umbar, they likely anticipated as I did - that ROP would include Umbar, the Rhun angle for next season was quite surprising.
    I doubt RoP gave them any sort of push to do Umbar. There's been teases of going back to Umbar, and reconnecting with Jajax since 2014, long before RoP was a thing. Hell, arguably it ties back into the books since we know Aragon subdued Umbar at some point.

    Quote Originally Posted by k40rne View Post
    I guess we'll see in a few months if they undid their initial errors in Central Gondor, Lebenin & Lossarnach (I still hope they eventually go back to West Gondor too and clean that up.
    Assuming we even get these areas in the new Gondor map.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arnand_the_Fox View Post
    And quest-lite areas work for some places sure, but you wouldn't expect that in the depth of Harad, in the middle of the Haradrim Kingdoms, and all that.
    They can do a bit of that and a bit of that approach, actually that's what I'm counting on - so they can have certain regions, like borderlands and deserts, pushed to the max in terms of size but no worrying about how much filled with content they'll be. This may allow them to paint a picture of massive South, not some highly condensed landmass smaller than the entirety of Eriador which would only make it feel like one kingdom rather than kingdoms.

    That said, yeah, I doubt we're going to Far Harad anytime soon. Once Umbar is done, then I guess Nurn, for next expac. Or perhaps even start that Frodo's journey back home. Would be about time.

  24. #924
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    Quote Originally Posted by TesalionLortus View Post
    They can do a bit of that and a bit of that approach, actually that's what I'm counting on - so they can have certain regions, like borderlands and deserts, pushed to the max in terms of size but no worrying about how much filled with content they'll be. This may allow them to paint a picture of massive South, not some highly condensed landmass smaller than the entirety of Eriador which would only make it feel like one kingdom rather than kingdoms.

    That said, yeah, I doubt we're going to Far Harad anytime soon. Once Umbar is done, then I guess Nurn, for next expac. Or perhaps even start that Frodo's journey back home. Would be about time.
    My guess is that, just going off the game's current overall scale, Far Harad would be a CardoSwan zone immediately south and east of Umbar - provided that Umbar also ends-up CardoSwan-sized. It wouldn't be like "off the map edge" - it would end up closer to current Middle-earth. Think of it as the distance from Fornost to say Caranost. I also want to see a massive South- but I'd be fine if that translated into like a bunch of CardoSwan's built adjacent to each other.

    Cheers!
    Landroval player; I am Phantion on the forums only and do not have a corresponding character in-game with that name on any server. Cheers! :)

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  25. #925
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phantion View Post
    My guess is that, just going off the game's current overall scale, Far Harad would be a CardoSwan zone immediately south and east of Umbar - provided that Umbar also ends-up CardoSwan-sized. It wouldn't be like "off the map edge" - it would end up closer to current Middle-earth. Think of it as the distance from Fornost to say Caranost. I also want to see a massive South- but I'd be fine if that translated into like a bunch of CardoSwan's built adjacent to each other.
    Well, but I mean: there is no need to rush, truly. So why condense that way? Also, if they really want they may give us some glimpses of certain biomes or regions without ever truly going into them in foreseeable future. Think Caras Gelebren being just a part of Swanfleet and not entire Eregion. Ideally, Far Harad should indeed be far, and if they ever go that way - which would be during the "cavalry of the Mark in the deserts of far South" in Fourth Age - then they can extend the map too, I;m sure many of us are crazy about seeing portions of Middle-earth at least a little bit further beyond the bounds of the map. If Mordor is 3 expansions of land - or more? we don't exactly know that yet! and one could also count Black Gate, which would be a region - then there is absolutely no reason to do Umbar in one expac, some condensed Far Harad as mini expansion or quest packs, and Near harad as one expac. Also, Rohan is one kingdom that's smaller than Gondor and and it was 2 whole expacs plus two quest packs. Gondor? Lots of quest packs, though it didn't have expansion and was a bit more condensed than usual, and it's not even finished yet.

    Connect Umbar to Gondor in a way that feels like it's a long distance, not a walk in a park. Then, eventually, they can build Eastward, where they can have both lone quest packs or 2 expansions worth of Harad maybe - or at least what constitutes the kingdoms to which the story would take us (with some CardoSwan treatment, yeah, I hope to see a lot of that treatment East and South). If time allows, there is even more of the South to tap into Like Far Harad, Near Harad, so further Eastward and South, even beyond the map.


    PS: CardoSwan is still tiny though. Compare the sizes here. (I like that map, it has nice zoom to better visualize things!). The whole Eriador is most likely smaller than the entire landmass directly South of Mordor and that's without going into the Second Age map (which does show/try to visualize what we know of Arda beyond the bounds)
    Last edited by TesalionLortus; Feb 02 2023 at 01:50 PM.

 

 
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