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Reader Comments (26)

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 11:30AM Mr Angry said

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Lockboxes are an excellent example of how short sighted greed can drive away players and fragment those left.

I kill a mob, I've earned my loot, I don't need to pay Turbine to get it, the work I put in was the payment for the item.

I feel appalled that they add unique items to this, to really pull in those people without restrain to over extend financially, especially the younger players.

This is gambling, a lottery you pay for, and works around gaming restrictions. It's treating customers as numbers.

This and the selling of armor with stats just shows that the direction and greed exhibited by this once straight shooting developer, and alienating their customers.


The problem with LOTRO is that they spent too damn long working on items that didn't engage their players, their own flights of fancy which were not community requests, and now have to play catch up on the balance sheet by offering crap like this.

I hold Kate Piaz directly responsible for this new nadir in LOTRO developments, unless there is someone else we should be addressing?

We've waiting sooo long for fixes, and all they trumpet is new stuff that you can buy, rather than fixing the game you already paid for. This game limps towards Mordor now, looks like the dark lord has victory within his grasp.

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 11:46AM (Unverified) said

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I like most of what LotRO does, but not these boxes. There should be some way to open them without ever paying. I do hope at the very least they're in addition to and not in place of normal drops.

I'd rather they just sell the unlocked boxes in the store for the cost of the key, a grab bag like other stores do, so that if you're not interested you don't have to be bothered with the process.

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 1:06PM aurickle said

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@(Unverified)
They'll tell you that you can open them without ever paying, and they'd technically be right. One of the things that's good about LotRO's system is that you can earn points by playing and not spend a dime.

However, I find the lockbox system disingenuous because it requires you to spend your hard earned points on a random outcome. Sure, you might get something great but you're far more likely to get something you don't care about. The only way to know which is to spend your points.

If I'm going to spend my points, I want to know what I'm spending them on. Period. Any lockboxes I get are getting deleted.
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Posted: Feb 13th 2012 11:49AM Deliverator said

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Go Free To Play! It's the future!

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 12:19PM Space Cobra said

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"The boxes, which require a special key to unlock for its tantalizing prize, have had their loot tables improved and can even drop additional keys for future boxes."

"Wow, I just bought a key and my prize is....more keys!!!"


Feed the addiction, Turbine! :P

Posted: Feb 14th 2012 1:42AM Cyroselle said

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@Space Cobra Indeed!


Randomly, this reminds me of my most favorite cartoon episode of all time, The Real Ghostbusters, 'The Devil to Pay'. Skip to 14:11 for the relevant part, but honestly the whole episode is pretty fantastic.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmSQGx4i0b4&feature=related

And behind Door #2 is...
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Posted: Feb 13th 2012 12:53PM Greymantle said

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I wonder what it must feel like to fail with a IP like LOTR. This game could have been so much more and I don't mean the store.

I hope some day we get another company that gets a shot at a LOTR MMO after this one fades away.

Posted: Feb 14th 2012 2:03AM Cyroselle said

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@Greymantle It's actually a very nice game with a decent community, and you can easily gain the store currency through regular play, and swiftly through calculated deed grinding.

Adding to this, your 'Turbine Points' are tied to your account, not your individual characters, and you can make, as a free player, a total of 2 characters per server.

So to expedite TP gain, I made 4 characters across 2 servers, with one as my main, and the others TP farmers, and gained the TP needed to buy my main's riding skill in just a few hours.

The restrictions on the free player account are a little annoying though, so I'll spend a little RL cash on some extra bag space to permanently upgrade my account from free to 'premium'.

I do like the deed system though, it's like 'achievements, but you can unlock class skills as well as store currency and titles though them, and extra crafting recipes have a chance of dropping from regular mob kills.

It makes a nice off-game next to my RIFT play. :D

It could, however be ruined by an exploitative cash shop, I'm hoping this doesn't happen.
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Posted: Feb 13th 2012 1:25PM Plastic said

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Oh well, I was holding on to a little bit of hope that they would reverse direction with the lootboxes, but the fact that they responded to the negative player reaction with...more lootboxes, just solidifies my resolve to never play this game again.

I'd love to delude myself into believing that the increased drop-rate for keys will be significant, but given the fact that Turbine refuses to release any real numbers, I'm lead to believe that hoping for a key to drop will be akin to waiting for a stat-tome to drop.

The good news is that there are quite a few alternatives out there now days, so it's a lot easier to move on to a different game than it would have been a year or so ago.

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 1:41PM TortoiseCan said

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I don't like this idea as it is very easily abused and is morally wrong. It's basically like opening up a casino in middle earth. I really feel like they should reconsider allowing these items to be purchased in the LOTRO store - or at least set some limitations on them - like only charge 25TP and only allow one box to be opened per day.

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 2:44PM smartstep said

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@TortoiseCan

Forget it.
If you still think that Turbine will change it's direction with Lotro then yo're very naive.
Either suck it up or leave.

I suspect you're one of players that like game alot and not like what Turbine does with it ,but well just cause of that ,Turbine will not change their business strategy.
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Posted: Feb 13th 2012 1:49PM Seffrid said

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If you're paying a subscription for the game you're automatically getting Turbine points some of which you can allocate to the keys if you want to. If you prefer not to use them for the keys then you can still get the keys as loot drops.

If you're not paying a subscription but you reckon to use the cash store you can get the keys that way, or if you prefer not to do that then, again, you can still get the keys as loot drops.

That just leaves those people who don't subscribe or use the cash store and who think they're entitled to everything for nothing, and even they can get the keys as loot drops.

So what's the problem again? I guess it's the rarity of the loot drops that offends the "I want everything for nothing NOW!" brigade.

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 2:15PM SocksForYou said

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@Seffrid I'm happy to spend cash in F2P games but I can't stand these types of sales ploys. They're tacky as hell.

I haven't played LOTRO since it went F2P, but in Star Trek Online you're constantly looting these lock boxes from enemies, and anytime someone unlocks one with a special ship the game broadcasts a server-wide message.

It feels like I'm in a sci-fi themed casino or bingo hall.
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Posted: Feb 13th 2012 2:26PM Plastic said

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@Seffrid

The concerns that some of us have toward lottery systems, specifically the gambling aspect of it, is not negated by the availability of the occasional "free" pull at the lever.

If you have no problem with voluntary gambling, that's fine, but please understand that a large group of us do see it as an unsavory business practice, enough so that it is typically heavily regulated in most countries and states, even those lotteries that are voluntary and may even hand out free tickets to the occasional passerby.

I think it is very disingenuous of you to dismiss us as entitled players who simply "want everything for nothing." That couldn't be further from the truth. Some of us have kids who play this Teen-rated game, and it's very disheartening to know that they are being exposed to this type of money-making scheme in the lands of middle-earth.

Again, you may have a completely different opinion on the harms of gambling, and that's totally fine, but let's not try to paint those of us who do have a problem with it as simply being entitled a-holes.
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Posted: Feb 14th 2012 2:06AM Cyroselle said

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@SocksForYou That's gotta be a little weird. Goodness the RP people must hate that!
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Posted: Feb 15th 2012 5:25AM (Unverified) said

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@Seffrid : I play LOTRO. I don't subscribe, but I've spent money on points to buy quest packs, expansions, skirmishes, crafting guild access and riding skills.

But I'll uninstall the game before I ever spend a PENNY on this garbage. Turbine need to ask themselves whether they want to be a game developer and make a profit from providing entertainment, or whether they want to be a scamhouse and make a profit luring sucker marks into rigged casino games.
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Posted: Feb 13th 2012 1:54PM Titula said

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I dislike this idea as I disliked the Turbine Store introduction and the constant ads in-game killing my immersion and the only mails I receive from Turbine are ads to buy stuff from their Store. As a life-timer I feel betrayed by their choices and with no clear explanations from them I'll have to reckon they went F2P to grab more money, not because they were financially unsound. I pre-ordered Rise of Isengard as soon as it was announced but now I stopped playing because I don't feel like *supporting* them anymore as long as they break their promises by introducing armors and lottery (an Asian F2P speciality btw) and let us wait 1.5 year for decent updates. The world has changed... Turbine is not the Turbine from 2007 anymore and not "powered by its fans" at all as they don't care about their community, only about paying clients now.

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 2:44PM Ceridith said

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If I wanted to gamble I'd play online poker.

Turbine's F2P money making tactics are getting sleazier with each patch.

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 2:50PM Samael said

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Thankfully I stopped playing this game when it went F2P.

This is the problem with F2P games and item stores. They eventually fall into this pattern. F2P will be the bane of video games in general. I wonder when everyone will stop be "enough is enough."

Turbine had promise, but they squandered it.

Posted: Feb 13th 2012 4:00PM Seffrid said

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@Plastic and SocksForYou:

Why are you taking me to task over lottteries (and my approach to voluntary gambling)? I haven't even mentioned them.

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