Smooth Launch for Turbine

I shouldn’t be surprised with a smooth MMO launch, but I still am. The Lord of the Rings Online: Shadows of Angmar launched yesterday and from all appearances it was quite trouble free. I have heard some tales of new account registrations being slow, but other than that it seemed to go without many problems at all. The availability of boxes on store shelves might not be as plentiful as one might hope, but I don’t know if that qualifies as a negative.

There was a queue when I logged into Landroval last night, being 14th in line. I was logged in within 3 minutes. I ran around a lot, trying to see how many people were playing. It looked pretty good to me. Plenty of people.

Several people have covered the launch and I wanted to link you to those posts as well as highlight a little from them.

First up is Tobold and his latest journal.

Yesterday was the official release of Lord of the Rings Online, and over here in Europe it went medium smoothly. The servers stayed up, there wasn’t too much lag, and installation and downloading the latest patch went fast enough. But the website on which you had to create your account and enter your CD key was totally overloaded, and hard to impossible to access.

Next we have Michael Zenke at MMOG Nation.

I was sure that LOTRO was nothing more than a cheap knock-off of WoW with a hobbit-skin cover. By the 17th, during an argument with my comrade in the Cesspit, I found myself reconsidering my opinion. At the end of the month I had already apologized for an ill-given ‘award’. Last week, my will caved. Today, though I still have the sneaking suspicion I’m never going to see much of the world Turbine hath wrought, I stand before you apologetic, impressed, and excited. I don’t have a crystal ball, but Turbine finally might have a hit on their hands.

The Ancient Gaming Noob has some updated information on the subscription plans.

I was actually a bit surprised to see that if you take the $9.99 a month founder’s subscription plan, you can actually get a further discount on your subscription price if you pay for 3, 6, or 12 months at once.

The Common Sense Gamer had this to say:

I logged in last night with my Captain and did about 3 or 4 quests and then called it a night. I didn’t get to level 16 with that effort, but I was just happy to be progressing again. The town of Bree was just full of people and the whole world looks to be well populated.

As for me, I really didn’t play much last night, I was just observing. This has to be good news for Turbine, as a bad launch can be really hard to get over. I look forward to seeing where they take us on this ride.

I suppose I should give my review of the Special Edition box.

Full Game on 2 DVD’s – Yes, good. I have a DVD player. I did the repair to get the high res files added, went quickly.

30-days of free online play – nothing to say here, also included in the regular box.

Free 10-day Buddy Key – good for my wife to use some day I guess.

The “Beyond the Shadows. . .The Making of The Lord of the Rings Online” DVD – A collection of videos that show how Turbine brought the Books of J.R.R. Tolkien to life. Hear from the game’s designers and see their work from concept to completion. – This is actually pretty good and alone is probably worth paying the extra $10.

The Lord of the Rings Online Soundtrack – In-game soundtrack of the Shire, Rivendell, Bree, Thorin’s Hall and Angmar. – Well, it’s not as good as the original World of Warcraft soundtrack, but I think it’s better than the Burning Crusade soundtrack.

Exclusive In-Game Item – “The Glass of Aglarel” – Carrying this in-game jewel will increase your Hope to aid you against the effects of Dread brought on by the Witch-king and his minions. – I haven’t actually activated my full account yet as there are still a few days left on the beta account so I really have no opinion. From what I have read it is a +1 Hope for 5 minutes with a 2 hour cooldown.

A Full Color Special Edition Manual – Didn’t even look at it, oops.

Exclusive map of Middle-earth – Very disappointed. Small piece of paper, folded in 4. Hard to even read it.

– Ethic

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7 thoughts on “Smooth Launch for Turbine”

  1. I was able to get on in a reasonable time last night, which surprised me a bit. The server list showed some servers with waits to get on, but my own seemed okay.

    I did run into a lot more lag than usual and an oddity where I would run past a certain point and suddenly be 10 feet back, running towards that point again. It seemed to be the seam between two zones, as I could trace that behavior along a line that followed the bank of a river. That lasted for about five minutes and then cleared up.

    I was out in open country where there were not too many players. I wonder how things went in the noob zones on night one.

    In the special edition, the color manual is actually a decent book. But if that is a special feature, I am not sure I want to know what the standard manual looks like.

    And that map in the special edition… I guess the best thing I can say is that I did not really need another map of Middle Earth.

  2. Yup. There was a brief hiccup of service late last night for a couple of servers (Elendilmir and some other). The login servers were just absolutely smashed. But it was solved in an hour or so.

    Other than that, performs just like in beta, obviously with the additional lag and things that a buttload more players bring with them.

    So, yup. I can be cynical, but I have to take my hat off for this one. It’s been a very very smooth launch so far. Very little to fault, so gg Turbine. Probably one of the best launches of a thing of this kind I’ve seen. So far, at least.

  3. There’s definitely plenty of people… boy is there plenty of people on Silverlode server.

    If you’re a claustrophobic then stay out of the prancing pony!

  4. Wilhelm said: I did run into a lot more lag than usual and an oddity where I would run past a certain point and suddenly be 10 feet back, running towards that point again.

    At least it cleared up after 10 min :) A friend of mine still plays Vanguard (god knows why) and that kind of thing happens so much that he is now “used to it”. I find that strangely depressing: to see my friend playing an obviously bugged out game (swimming on rocks just because they fall below sea level?).

    I’m glad Turbine had a good launch, not because I play LOTRO, but because the MMO world doesn’t need any more negative feedback as they seem to have enough already. /cheer turbine

  5. There was another short queue last night on Landroval (14 people, 3 minutes) but once in game it was pretty quiet around Thorin’s Hall. I am curious to see how the crowds are after the pre-order access gets shut off.

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