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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harvain View Post
    That's assuming a lot. I personally don't think LOTRO has any form of whale problem and I don't believe that is the reason why any "Casual Player" is driven from the game.

    A good example: EG7, overall publisher for LOTRO, shared some stats for LOTRO back in Dec 2020. LOTRO with over 41,000 Monthly Subscribers was making $10,000,000 USD Yearly purely based off Subscriptions.

    Whales "might" exist in LOTRO but tbh it's not the main focus on LOTRO's drive to get money. To give an example, for LOTRO to make as much money on whales than said over 41,000 Monthly Subscribers bringing in $10,000,000 USD Yearly back in Dec 2020 you would need 1,000 Accounts spending $10,000 USD a Year to equal the same amount of money.

    Yes, there are things like Housing which DOES cost a lot but this is a purely optional feature like everything else they offer. There is nothing being offered on the LOTRO Store or Market that is a must have item or items and not having such basically ruins your experience whether you are a New Player (2 hours or less) or have been playing LOTRO for any amount of time.



    There are many factors that would make a casual player not remain with LOTRO. Some example:

    - Player is not into the Lord of the Rings.

    - Player is not into LOTRO's combat mechanics.

    - Player is not into playing LOTRO due to being in a location in the world where they encounter high latency constantly. (This would be a factor for many people as LOTRO Servers are purely hosted in the Eastern United States of America as of August 2021)

    - Player only has a set amount of time to game and eventually stops plays purely due to time constraints.

    - Player has an account issue and cannot get Customer Support. (This honestly is a HUGE factor in what doesn't help keep people around as LOTRO is basically now known as a game where you best be able to solve your own problem(s) or you are doomed)

    - Player encounters something in the game that makes them not enjoy it anymore. (This could be anything really. For example, some players HATE the Current Legendary Item System and once they encountered it made the game less fun and playable for them)

    - And so many other factors that the list could go on forever.



    Summary: There are many factors that hinder Player Retention for LOTRO and there is no specific factor that stands at the forefront that ensures any newer, casual, experienced players would stop playing.

    I will say that tbh, Game Connection would be the biggest factor than everything else as if your connection is bad, then it is hard or impossible to play LOTRO.
    I think the biggest issue is the early pay wall and constant mtx. That's generally the only issue i've seen when i try to get ppl from my generation who are LOTR fans to play this game.

    An issue that even the dev team is aware of, since our business model hasn't really changed with the times or aged well.

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by wrath247 View Post
    I think the biggest issue is the early pay wall and constant mtx. That's generally the only issue i've seen when i try to get ppl from my generation who are LOTR fans to play this game.

    An issue that even the dev team is aware of, since our business model hasn't really changed with the times or aged well.
    Yeah, overall LOTRO itself is the reason why people do not play this game, don't remain with the game for long or are among those who play for a time before leaving for a time and returning.

    If an account invests money for VIP, Expansions, etc it "can" increase the chance for someone sticking with the game but doesn't mean it will keep them here.

  3. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Harvain View Post
    There are many factors that would make a casual player not remain with LOTRO. Some example:
    [...]
    The model for the game is confusing and a bit expensive without sale, imo that's the biggest turnoff for new casual players.

    For Elder Scrolls online, you can get the base game and latest expansion for $60 right now.

    For Lotro, there's the expansion trove ($60) + Minas Morgul ($40) + Three Peaks ($20) + you have to buy VIP/or quest packs to level through areas not covered by expansions. Not to mention there is constant monetization thrown in your face while playing, pretty much everywhere on menus has some kind of buy button near it.

  4. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Name1ess View Post
    The model for the game is confusing and a bit expensive without sale, imo that's the biggest turnoff for new casual players.

    For Elder Scrolls online, you can get the base game and latest expansion for $60 right now.

    For Lotro, there's the expansion trove ($60) + Minas Morgul ($40) + Three Peaks ($20) + you have to buy VIP/or quest packs to level through areas not covered by expansions. Not to mention there is constant monetization thrown in your face while playing, pretty much everywhere on menus has some kind of buy button near it.
    Ditto.
    And nost stuff in the Lotro store is also expensive.

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Laurelinarien View Post
    Ditto.
    And nost stuff in the Lotro store is also expensive.
    sad truth tbh, the fact they even still have cosmetics or unlocks not account bound feels so dated when compared to other MMOs.

  6. #31
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    The speed crafting alone is worth it
    “Then something Tookish woke up inside him, and he wished to go and see the great mountains, and hear the pine-trees and the waterfalls, and explore the caves, and wear a sword instead of a walking-stick.”? J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

  7. #32
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    136
    If you want to pay you should buy life sub vip account or account on black market.

    Don't tell you 'll be hack or other it's wrong i know many people who bought account and they are still on the game.

  8. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by wrath247 View Post
    I think the biggest issue is the early pay wall and constant mtx. That's generally the only issue i've seen when i try to get ppl from my generation who are LOTR fans to play this game.
    No, it's that they don't understand what a micro-transaction is. Everything is too expensive. Quest packs and expansions, for instance, are still at their original prices for when they were end game. That's not sustainable.

    In addition, the focus on gear in instances and the p2w store made a lot of casual players leave. You can no longer get a casual group with reward gear and do a T1 instance. A lot of folks fled because of that.

    The server consolidation was clear proof we lost a lot of casual players. So is the increasingly empty forums, they used to be far more active.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Froyo_K_Baggins View Post
    No, it's that they don't understand what a micro-transaction is. Everything is too expensive. Quest packs and expansions, for instance, are still at their original prices for when they were end game. That's not sustainable.
    .
    This is so true. It's not new player friendly at all. Even me, I wanted to beef up my second account, but the cost is just too high.
    "Grandchildren are God's reward for not killing your children when you wanted to."

  10. #35
    I do not think in its present condition with the train wreck that are legendary weapons, the horrid grind through 130 levels (unless you're a whale and want to buy valars and what not), the low QoL of the game, it is like they are putting minimum effort and hoping for max money. I hope the new company makes some positive changes but for me it is too little, to late.
    Hogrid, Landroval

  11. #36
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    Monetization is an ongoing discussion. SSG hasn't stated any solid plan(s) for such as it mostly comes down to nobody for SSG really likes how it is but also don't know how it should be adjusted.

    Various opinions by members of the community have been given over the years and with some using examples of other games and how they do it. Say for example the Elder Scrolls Online and doing a base purchase for the game (regardless of what version) that you own going forward. This was all well and good for how the ESO was handled but to point something out ESO changed what it's model would be after only 9 months after the game had launched on April 4th 2014 having X amount of content at said time and then when it fully switched on March 17th, 2015 to it's overall current model.

    Compare that to LOTRO which spent April 2007 to September 2010 (3 years and 5 months basically) before it switched it's model from a purely subscription based model to the current overall F2P + Subscription + All must buy Expansions for X amount of time before they are available for LOTRO Points Model we have. LOTRO has as of August 2021:

    - 130 Levels to play through with a Level Cap Increase coming in 2021.

    - 24 Quest Packs (more if you include the Expansion Quest Packs if a person wouldn't buy the Expansion itself and Bilbo Quest Pack).

    - 8 Expansions with the 9th coming in 2021.

    - 7 Races to choose from for what a Character's Class can be with a 9th Race, the River Hobbit, confirmed for being a future race in the Post-Gundabad Era of LOTRO (Anduin River Hobbits, Smeagol's ancestors and descendants).

    - 10 Classes to play with various ways they each play and an 11th Class, the Brawler, coming in 2021.

    - An upcoming Revamp for the Legendary Item System where the Current System will be phased out over time and the New LI System eventually becoming the main Legendary Item System the game will support and use going forward here in 2021.

    - SSG overall having become more resolute at keeping LOTRO going as long as possible and as of July 2021 having an overall 2 Year Road Map for Development for Post-Gundabad while leaving room for both what the Parent Companies want to see for the game and changes in what players like/dislike for what content is doing well or not well.

    - And much more that can't be listed here even while mentioning many Systems that are abandoned, issues the game has had for year, etc.



    It would be hard to put a price to what LOTRO has and will have here in 2021 and before being 15 years old in April 2022 and what the best Monetization Model that would be unique to LOTRO as it is a unique game onto itself and no other game can truly be its comparison.

    LOTRO's current Monetization Model pending any sales, gives it the maximum amount of profit from a single account looking to get all the current content in the game even if said account buys the cheapest ways to get everything content wise purely in terms of Quest Packs & Expansions. Any new Monetization Model would for the short and long term not equal the current model's profit min/max values. This is where it'll be a while before SSG makes a decision as many discussions, meetings, etc will have to occur to develop the plan for the new Monetization Model.

    A Subscription will remain in some form which will be a key area that determines how the Monetization Model will happen. Currently as of August 2021 just being VIP with a $14.99 USD a Month Subscription gets you 75% of LOTRO's Landscape Content along with various Instances and Raids for the Quest Packs included with VIP. This doesn't include all the various bonuses a VIP gets for each character.


    It'll be a long process for what will occur and I personally think SSG will get themselves into 2022 and past the Post-Gundabad Updates for both Gundabad and the Legendary Item ongoing Revamp Updates to get things settled before any true Monetization talks would see work done to change things in LOTRO for a new Monetization Model. That is if such even occurs in 2022.

  12. #37
    Monetization will definitely not change significantly before Gundabad, it's too big a thing to handle at the same time as making a new expansion. That said, I don't think it'll be something where we will wait to wholesale replace the entire model - my goal is to get a plan that gets us 70-80% of the way there, get that out the door, then work on the rest. So 2022 is much more feasible. We're still having those discussions - and atm I actually have to finish putting the group pitch together for leadership to approve - but I'm hopeful that we'll have a decision on overall direction within the next month or two. Getting it to happen will certainly take longer, but like I said, 2022 feels feasible.

  13. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by Raninia View Post
    Monetization will definitely not change significantly before Gundabad, it's too big a thing to handle at the same time as making a new expansion. That said, I don't think it'll be something where we will wait to wholesale replace the entire model - my goal is to get a plan that gets us 70-80% of the way there, get that out the door, then work on the rest. So 2022 is much more feasible. We're still having those discussions - and atm I actually have to finish putting the group pitch together for leadership to approve - but I'm hopeful that we'll have a decision on overall direction within the next month or two. Getting it to happen will certainly take longer, but like I said, 2022 feels feasible.
    Bravely into the unknown LOL. Things like Gacha (Hobbit gifts are a kind of these) work very well in South East Asia (Japan, South Korea, China, etc.). They seem to work in the USA somewhat. But less well in Europe. But the LOTRO community is a little bit strange (from a demographics point of view) and just because something works for Blizzard does not mean it will work here. I don't envy your task of keeping the players and company leadership happy and still find something that will actually generate the expected results.

    My best input (based on nothing but the type of people I've met playing the game -- which is often very different than those on the forums ) NOTE: this is based on most players, not the few who raid, or do PVP, etc.

    - LOTRO Players are less likely to buy something just to pretend they are uber
    - LOTRO Players might buy things to avoid activities that feel like they are banging their head against the wall - but will be angry that they were forced to do that.
    - LOTRO Players will buy things to look better - or make their house look better. - clothing, weapons, house items, NOTE: you may need to come up with mid range house option to get more people buying.
    - LOTRO players will buy things to make their life easier (better horse, more storage space, etc.)
    - LOTRO Players will buy things that let them explore new places/quests (but only if they can continue to level easily)

    Now lets see people improve the list I'm sure I have forgot a lot of things.

    BTW the current approach of having to buy LOTRO Points or other things is probably not great for impulse buying. You need stuff that costs $3-$10 and can be done with a credit card/pay pal to get the impulse buys.
    May the winds of fortune sail you,
    May you sail a gentle sea.
    May it always be the other guy
    Who says, "this drink's on me."

  14. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by SavinDwarf View Post
    Bravely into the unknown LOL. Things like Gacha (Hobbit gifts are a kind of these) work very well in South East Asia (Japan, South Korea, China, etc.). They seem to work in the USA somewhat. But less well in Europe. But the LOTRO community is a little bit strange (from a demographics point of view) and just because something works for Blizzard does not mean it will work here. I don't envy your task of keeping the players and company leadership happy and still find something that will actually generate the expected results.

    My best input (based on nothing but the type of people I've met playing the game -- which is often very different than those on the forums ) NOTE: this is based on most players, not the few who raid, or do PVP, etc.

    - LOTRO Players are less likely to buy something just to pretend they are uber
    - LOTRO Players might buy things to avoid activities that feel like they are banging their head against the wall - but will be angry that they were forced to do that.
    - LOTRO Players will buy things to look better - or make their house look better. - clothing, weapons, house items, NOTE: you may need to come up with mid range house option to get more people buying.
    - LOTRO players will buy things to make their life easier (better horse, more storage space, etc.)
    - LOTRO Players will buy things that let them explore new places/quests (but only if they can continue to level easily)

    Now lets see people improve the list I'm sure I have forgot a lot of things.

    BTW the current approach of having to buy LOTRO Points or other things is probably not great for impulse buying. You need stuff that costs $3-$10 and can be done with a credit card/pay pal to get the impulse buys.
    Lots of players seem to have problems buying from the Lotro market where cash purchases are handled. I will buy the last 3 you mentioned if the price is right. I have all the shared vault, wardrobe space and cosmetic slots opened. I would buy more carry alls for a more reasonable price and/or more slots. I also buy most new content when it comes out in the Lotro Store but the latest update for somebody who doesn't raid is very expensive. Maybe you might consider next quest pack to sell them separate and a discounted bundle.
    What I do not like is the hobbit present and loot box gambling. I like to see what I get for my "money". Since hobbit presents normally have nothing "big" in them it doesn't disturb me as much except for the festival goodies. Putting these seasonal items for limited time in the store or in Lalia's market for mithril and I would buy multiples but I will not buy rolls.

  15. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by Harvain View Post
    Monetization is an ongoing discussion. SSG hasn't stated any solid plan(s) for such as it mostly comes down to nobody for SSG really likes how it is but also don't know how it should be adjusted.
    It would be hard to put a price to what LOTRO has and will have here in 2021 and before being 15 years old in April 2022 and what the best Monetization Model that would be unique to LOTRO as it is a unique game onto itself and no other game can truly be its comparison.
    There I have to strongly disagree. For instance, I got bored and began leveling my housing alt a while back. I just skilled Mordor on him. Why? Because it's still 2495LP for something people race through. At max, it should be 500 LP. There, easy.

    The same is true for all the other areas. No zone should still be priced anywhere near the cost it was at when it was new and the level cap.


    On the other hand, one micro-transaction I've requested repeatedly is that I'd pay 1MC to get NPCs, both good and evil, to shut up in a quest I've done so many times before.

  16. #41
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    Jan 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by Froyo_K_Baggins View Post
    There I have to strongly disagree. For instance, I got bored and began leveling my housing alt a while back. I just skilled Mordor on him. Why? Because it's still 2495LP for something people race through. At max, it should be 500 LP. There, easy.

    The same is true for all the other areas. No zone should still be priced anywhere near the cost it was at when it was new and the level cap.


    On the other hand, one micro-transaction I've requested repeatedly is that I'd pay 1MC to get NPCs, both good and evil, to shut up in a quest I've done so many times before.
    But that's based purely on your opinion for what things should be and why it is an ongoing discussion and things haven't been adjusted. SSG has to go through all the proper channels and are for how to go about Monetization with Producer Raninia stating such in his latest post on this subject.

    Edit: You also used the example of "People race through" when referring to Mordor. That is for some players. Not everyone plays content at the same pace. There are players who have been playing regularly for years and never have and never will be at the endgame content of LOTRO at any point. This is a factor in Monetization as well, you get the largest amount of purchases usually within X amount of time and then beyond that is X amount of purchases which over time can equal or surpass the initial launch purchases. This applies for any form of product.

    Quote Originally Posted by Raninia View Post
    Monetization will definitely not change significantly before Gundabad, it's too big a thing to handle at the same time as making a new expansion. That said, I don't think it'll be something where we will wait to wholesale replace the entire model - my goal is to get a plan that gets us 70-80% of the way there, get that out the door, then work on the rest. So 2022 is much more feasible. We're still having those discussions - and atm I actually have to finish putting the group pitch together for leadership to approve - but I'm hopeful that we'll have a decision on overall direction within the next month or two. Getting it to happen will certainly take longer, but like I said, 2022 feels feasible.

    Personally I haven't discussed anything else for what the LOTRO Store has as it is all optional items to get beyond Quest Packs and Expansions.

    Yes, I agree older content being Quest Packs & Expansions should be priced better. Newer content should have X pricing and then X amount of time after release = % of price going down.

    The main thing is where should the pricing be at where it is very fair for older content and those % drops as content gets older and it's pricing goes down for the newer content in LOTRO.

    Some people would and have argued that all of Eriador or the Volume I Epic Quest Regions (Angmar, Enedwaith, Eregion, Evendim, Forochel, Misty Mountains, North Downs and Trollshaws) should be free and the first spot a brand new account should be required to buy either a Quest Pack or Expansion is when the player goes to Moria for the Moria Expansion which starts the Volume II Epic Quest. Then others have stated that the Moria Expansion should also be free to all accounts on top of Eriador (listed above quest packs) and giving the player the start of the Volume II Epic Quest and a better experience when starting with the Legendary Item System (personally maybe in the Post-Legendary Item Revamp this would make more sense). These example are a LOT of content which could draw players to LOTRO, help retain players longer, and many other benefits but would drastically shake up the current model.



    Not saying the above example can't or shouldn't happen either fully as explained or in some form of it but changing the model up has to be done smart and ensures that LOTRO does profit from it, not nickel and dime but where it works well for Players and LOTRO short and long term. Profit also doesn't mean money either, LOTRO can profit from more players getting more content, increasing the chances of money being spent even if X amount of players only use ingame earned LP.

    Monetization has several aspects that need improved with obviously Pricing being a key area but how items are described, how Players interact with the LOTRO Store & LOTRO Market, what items LOTRO offers that can improve a character short or long term (This being a key spot. Having better information and examples of if a player buys X item what it does, some visual example in terms of a picture and small video of said Item and it's effect(s), etc), Housing/Clothing/Horse Items with much better ways to view them (a possible way to help here would be having a LOTRO Store Area in the game where all available items in the LOTRO Store have them viewable. This would make getting say a specific housing item easier as a player would know that X item is this large, can go in these spots, etc) and many other ways that myself, others and SSG could come up with.

    Mostly it comes down to if there is to be change, how do the Players and LOTRO both benefit the most from said changes. LOTRO is a large game even before newer content is coming before 2021 ends.
    Last edited by Harvain; Aug 12 2021 at 09:29 PM.

  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harvain View Post
    There are players who have been playing regularly for years and never have and never will be at the endgame content of LOTRO at any point..
    Wow, you just described me to a T. Whenever a character of mine gets to level cap, I get bored and work on a lowbie. For example, last week my champ hit 130 just as he got to The Yore or what ever you call it, and I haven't touched him since. I'm on an RK in Eregion right now.

    It took me maybe 10 months to get my champ there .
    "Grandchildren are God's reward for not killing your children when you wanted to."

  18. #43
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    Feb 2012
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    862
    Quote Originally Posted by SavinDwarf View Post
    Bravely into the unknown LOL. Things like Gacha (Hobbit gifts are a kind of these) work very well in South East Asia (Japan, South Korea, China, etc.). They seem to work in the USA somewhat. But less well in Europe. But the LOTRO community is a little bit strange (from a demographics point of view) and just because something works for Blizzard does not mean it will work here. I don't envy your task of keeping the players and company leadership happy and still find something that will actually generate the expected results.

    My best input (based on nothing but the type of people I've met playing the game -- which is often very different than those on the forums ) NOTE: this is based on most players, not the few who raid, or do PVP, etc.

    - LOTRO Players are less likely to buy something just to pretend they are uber
    - LOTRO Players might buy things to avoid activities that feel like they are banging their head against the wall - but will be angry that they were forced to do that.
    - LOTRO Players will buy things to look better - or make their house look better. - clothing, weapons, house items, NOTE: you may need to come up with mid range house option to get more people buying.
    - LOTRO players will buy things to make their life easier (better horse, more storage space, etc.)
    - LOTRO Players will buy things that let them explore new places/quests (but only if they can continue to level easily)

    Now lets see people improve the list I'm sure I have forgot a lot of things.

    BTW the current approach of having to buy LOTRO Points or other things is probably not great for impulse buying. You need stuff that costs $3-$10 and can be done with a credit card/pay pal to get the impulse buys.
    As someone who plays Gacha games and more modern MMOs; I'd have to agree. Since this is just a discussion, and not concrete plans for whatever happens in 2022, will give my opinion on this.

    Firstly, yeah if you want to get ppl to buy more frequently that generally requires pricing things low. From an economic/financial pov, increased prices does not automatically generate more income, also you have to consider the consumer's willingness to spend or their utility from purchasing said product. The being that increasing the price reduces their marginal utility and the pool of possible consumers relative to world market prices.

    Ik ppl don't agree with making older content free, or at least SOA and Moria, and don't like the idea of pricing things cheaply because they're afraid it'll ruin the game. But from just a practical pov, every gamer will compare our business model with current business models. That's just a fact. Which reduces the possibility or likelihood they even try or suggest this game to other players (Majority don't even know this game exists).



    Secondly, is the market perception. Consumers/gamers today are more acquainted with buying cosmetics and including old expansions as part of subscriptions. For the latter every MMO does it, and with the former there are games that literally just survive on cosmetics while giving new content for free.

    So, and you ppl can't keep insisting otherwise, when ppl have that perception with them and carry it to trying LOTRO (on the 5% chance they've heard about it) it does carry negative views towards the game. Which is a shame because for an old game it's held up pretty well in some aspects.

    It also doesn't help that the store is immediately shoved into your face a few hours into the game. Or that cosmetics are priced high, this includes housing for premium. Making the overall barrier to entry into the game on several aspects, ludicrously high by today's standard.

 

 
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