Pre-Order Incentives

The Rise of Isengard will be available for Turbine Points sometime, so as a lifetimer, I can just wait and get it for free. They are encouraging you not to do that with pre-order incentives including a pocket item that gives +25% xp on monster kills. They are also heaping on variations on a small set of cosmetics. If you are not a subscriber, the “Legendary Edition” is a pretty nice deal, coming with quest packs for the Trollshaws, Eregion, Moria, Lothlorien, and Mirkwood. That is just short of getting all three expansions for $50, plus $10 worth of Turbine points and all the cosmetic candy. Player-compiled Q&A here.

A +25% item seems pretty big to me. It works up to level 65, so for every character you make until they reach expansion pack levels.

: Zubon

25 thoughts on “Pre-Order Incentives”

  1. For the life of me, I can’t tell if LOTRO is a good deal or not at this point in time. As a non-subscriber (tried it @launch, was too busy with WOW still), this seems like a great deal. But on the flip side, I might be a little peeved if I was a lifetime/founder, and had to pay again for “free” content :)

  2. What a truly twisted beast the MMORPG has become.

    Something is really wrong when one of the pre-order bonuses for a game is essentially, “you get to play 25% less of our game! It’s just that unexciting, we knew you’d be happy to play less of it.”

    Seriously now. Imagine: “Pre-order Portal 3 and you’ll get to skip chapters 3 and 7! They were just filler anyway.” Or: “Pre-order Mass Effect 3 and we’ll let you skip the tutorial and start in space. No more talking to people on the ground/space station like a pleb!”

    Just blows my mind. I mean, of course I understand MMOs well enough to know what’s going on here, but when I step out of that framework and take a fresh look, it’s just absurd.

    1. I agree with this sentiment completely. I also fully understand the prevailing attitude among MMO gamers to “power level to cap as quickly as possible” and “burn through the ‘grind’ as ‘painlessly’ as possible.”

      Even the most cursory examination of those attitudes really ought to throw up huge, flashing red, warnings signs that “something” is not quite right with this picture, and yet… the industry nobs seem to think “11 million subscribers can’t be wrong…” I wonder if any lemmings also have those thoughts; “This many fuzzy butts all moving the same direction can’t be wrong…” right before they go over the edge…

      But hey, I’m completely out of the loop on this stuff anyway. I like to explore… just to explore… and I’m never in any particular hurry to have someone else play the game for me (gold sellers) or rush to level cap (a.k.a. ENDgame… there’s a reason they call it that ya know…)

      1. And then there is rested XP which is double XP gained for monster kills, I’m not sure if these stack but it would be a whopping 250% XP per monster kill.

        One of the problems with Lotro is that there is very little alternative content between 50 and 65 when it comes to levelling alts. You can enter Moria later by doing Eregion/Epic books (9-15) but how many times can you do those quests before knowing them by heart. Playing through the quests once is more than enough but if you want to get through Moria/Mirkwood on a second/third character you are going to have to repeat at least some content. I wish they made Enedwaith start at level 60, because the quests there are 64/65 which is a bit of a waste.

        I’m premium at the moment, so don’t have access to rested XP and honestly levelling an alt through those levels has been painful, my first character I didn’t level without having some rested XP. I wish they would take a leaf out of WoWs book and nerf the XP needed to level in preparation for the expansion, or do something innovative like reduce XP needed to level by 30% for alts after your first character gets to 65. I suppose they are keeping the steep levelling curve to sell more XP potions but that’ll drive more people away than maintain.

        1. “…or do something innovative like reduce XP needed to level by 30% for alts after your first character gets to 65.”

          Not actually terribly innovative – EQ2’s been doing this for years (you get a 20% XP bonus for each character you have at level cap, to a max of, I think, 200%).

    2. Actually, wouldn’t you like to be able to skip the tutorial for ME3 after you’ve played through it already and are looking to get into more of the juicy story options with DifferentShep and TheOtherDifferentShep?

      Wouldn’t you like to be able to jump right to the Portal chapter you want to after you beat it? (Oh wait you can)

      That’s a better analogy.

      Although what +xp items actually are is a bonus to all of your character’s stats all the time in a genre focused around improving your character’s stats.

    3. Well, I’m that lunatic who would find a -25% XP item a huge incentive to purchase whilst the +25% was seriously freaking me out until I learnt it *was* an actual item, so you didn’t have to us it.

    4. You missed the boat on your mind being blown by years if not a decade or more that this has been going on. Thats just in MMOs too. Actually I don’t know what I’m saying, I’m fairly certain every MMO SHIPS with this in some fashion.

      Anyway, I fail to comprehend how the OPTION to go through content faster (that you very likely have already seen with your main) could be perceived as anything but great. WoW for example has had this for a very long time in several different forms that stack, its almost a *standard* feature for games of a certain lifespan.

      1. Yeah, you’re right of course, Torcano. I mean, I dual-boxed characters to level cap in WoW using the RAF boosted XP, so I really do get the appeal of something like this.

        Although it’s obviously not a new phenomena, I think I was so struck by this specific example for two reasons: Firstly, it’s linked to pre-ordering, which I’ve never seen before (though it’s probably not new) and strikes me as especially shady somehow, although that’s probably not fair to Turbine. Secondly, I’ve been away from MMORPGs for quite a while now, so my perspective has changed a bit.

        A couple years ago when I was heavy into WoW I might have just let this pass as a neat pre-order bonus. But compared to the attitudes in the games I play now (TF2, Minecraft, Terraria), this feels very alien indeed.

    5. I agree completely. I just don’t get the “destination” folks. I’m definitely a “journey” person myself, and I always thought that LotRO was a journey-type of game.

      However, I am using my 25% exp trinket simply to get through the content that I’ve done before a bit faster because I rerolled on Laurelin, so I am thankful for it. :P

      So I guess Turbine really is offering this thingy for altaholics. I know a lot of people tend to roll different classes in that game.

  3. Do we know how many Turbine Points it is likely to cost? Is it reasonable to assume that that buying it for TP would cost in the ballpark of $30, same as buying the base edition for cash?

  4. I am not sure I want the pre-order stuff, its a shame the +25% XP item doesn’t apply to quest XP. Turbine gave everybody +25% XP(for free!) for the 2-3 months before Mirkwood released & it wasn’t very helpful if you were level 50+. My captain alt is about to hit the grind in the 30’s so I will have to decide what to do.

  5. While I share people’s reservations about accelerated xp the fact that it is a pocket item that you can remove makes it ok by me. No need to use it if you are on your first run through and want to enjoy the scenery.

    As a lifetimer who only plays occasionally I earn more Turbine points than I can spend. I will almost certainly be able to get this for free with Turbine points.Nevertheless I am very tempted to pay cash for it. Partly for the goodies and partly to let Turbine know that I still exist.

    1. The point is that, optional or not, it’s effectively using the ability to skip through the entertainment you’ve paid for as an incentive to buy it in the first place.

      It’s somewhat analogous to the fast-forward button on your media player of choice: yes, it’s good to have it, but could you imagine it being used in promotional material as an added incentive to buy?

      1. Uh HELL yes. Thats why I bought a DVR.*

        *And what little TV I do watch now other than live sports I refuse to watch without fast-forward. So ya, pretty huge feature

  6. I’m going with the middle option, if I didn’t already have Mirkwood I’d go with the legendary option, that is a great deal and sure to get more people interested or at least tempt some free/premium players to get more invested in the game. The cosmetic items seem to be the best designed in the game, plenty of detail, hard to resist getting the white ones for my captain, but wouldn’t mind the green ones for my warden but not going to pay an extra $10 for the privilege.

  7. I’m a lifetime member and I purchased the “Legendary Edition”. I don’t feel ripped off at all. As someone always well behind the curve in regards to leveling, the 25% XP bonus is pure gold to me. Maybe I will actually get to the level cap at my “I wish I was as fast as a snail” pace. The mounts are a nice bonus as is the 1000 TP. Besides all that, I love LOTRO and I feel it is worth spending the money on.

    The 25% XP bonus will not make that HUGE of a difference. It’s nice, but it won’t make me out-level areas like crazy. It is only a bonus to the monster kills, not the quest XP. It helps, yes it does – but I don’t feel like it allows for “skipping” much of anything.

    1. Well I’m sure you might go back and “un-life” if you knew it was going F2P and you’d end up buying Legendary Editions of things anyway, right?

      Its pretty obvious the items are designed purely to screw over lifetime subs (which they probably have a huge surplus of not making enough money for them ;)).

      And guess what? They won – it worked :P

      1. Nope, I have no regrets at all with my cost vs enjoyment with LOTRO. Best money I’ve spent on MMOs since Guild Wars.

        I don’t *have* to buy anything with my account, I choose to.

        1. I feel exactly the same way. As a lifer, I also bought the Legendary edition. The way I see it, I’ll use those TPs eventually on some pretty item or another.

          1. Hmm I think I misunderstood the situation here, so buying the Legendary edition on top of your lifetime sub is going to get you the items as well as some TP?

            I guess what would determine how much value ther is for you here is how long/how much you’ve played that sub. For example if you would have paid as much in sub fees since getting lifetime, then pretty much anything on top is gravy I suppose.

  8. The 25% XP boost item says on it that it is good until the release of Isengard. Grumble…

    Update: Response on forums is that it is not correct, the item works until you reach level 65. No matter how long it takes.

  9. 25% is pretty big, especially since LoTRO is fairly generous with exp boosts as it is. I think that’s because LoTRO, of all the games I’ve played, is the most linear. I have 4 max level chars there, plus 2 more just inside of Moria I mentally couldn’t go further on because I dreaded the punishing LI system (which has since been changed). Every single one followed roughly the exact same zone grind. There is only one place to play for early 30s and so on. When the 60-65 run was opened up, it took me under 2 days (without boosted exp) to get my first char to 65 and playing fairly casually, and under a day for my second because I now knew where to go.

    If it was a pocket item that opened up completely new leveling zones, I’d be much happier with it. =)

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