In Defence of The Mordor Bundles

Hey Everyone, The Bearded Minstrel Here!

Before anything else,  I want to apologize for this week's absence of posts. Things have been a little hectic for me in real life, but all is good. Regular posts should resume this week. So let's jump into the 100-pound elephant into the room- The Mordor Expansion Packs and Prices.

To start of, it would be an understatement to say that the release of the expansion prices, release date, and contents of the 3 available packs, has created a rift between the community. On one side you have the individuals who believe the prices are too steep for what you are getting and on the other side you have the individuals who are willing to pay anything for new content and are looking to support SSG; we in the gaming community typically call these individuals, insultingly so, "Whales".

My blog was meant to focus on the story-telling found within the Lord of the Rings Online but I feel compelled to weigh in on this particular conversation by providing my view on the matter in hopes of bringing some clarity and understanding to both sides. So here goes!

1) The Ultimate Fan Bundle is too expensive


This is the number one complaint from what I can tell. People generally agree that $40 for the base game is fine, but some argue that the $80 Collectors Edition is a little egregious for what it is and the $130 is insane markup for what is provided.

Let's go ahead and break down what SSG calls "The Legendary Fan" bundle contains:

Post-Notes: Comments have been made that I forgot the Aria of the Valar. I Did not, they are in all the bundles and for the sake of comparison, it is built into the $40 base expansion.

  • Mordor Expansion - $40 value
  • High Elf Race - (Assuming Price would be same as Beorning on launch- 1,000 LP)
  • Bonus Character Slot - 595 LP
  • Exclusive Alliance Mount - (This mount is account-wide, and likely comes with Warsteed cosmetics, as such lets use the Steed of Bree mount price of 2495 LP)
  • Exclusive Mordor Mount - (This mount is account-wide, and likely comes with Warsteed cosmetics, as such lets use the Steed of Bree mount price of 2495 LP)
  • Exclusive Alliance Cosmetic - (Again, account-wide, let's use the basic price of a account-wide cosmetic bundle of 995 LP)
  • Exclusive Mordor Cosmetic - (Again, account-wide, let's use the basic price of a account-wide cosmetic bundle of 995 LP)
  • Ten Extra Shared Storage Slots - 595 LP
  • Month of VIP Access - $14.99
  • 2 Essence Reclamation Scrolls - (Bound to character, 295 each x 2 = 590LP)
  • 3 Relics - Assume these are Tier 10 or Tier 9, store price for 1 is 550LP x 3 = 1650
  • Wearable EXP Accelerator - Let's use the Shield of the Hammerhand as our default price at 995 LP
  • 2 Titles (Default price of title at 95LP x 2 = 190)
  • Housing Teleport - We don't know what this is, but let's give it a price of a regular return skill at 295 LP
Total, we come out with $54.99 and 12,890 LP Which as of today would cost $120.98 (The 11,000 LP Bundle + 1600 LP Bundle)

This brings the total potential price of the ultimate fan bundle to $174.97.


Look, am I making a fair bit of assumptions? yes. But I am using existing data for my estimates. The number is not a random BS number SSG decided to come up with, it is clearly one in which they weighed existing prices of items and titles and fairly provided as much as they could. It is an extremely fair price and one that I am willing to pay for things that are effectively optional.

2) High-Elves should have been included with the base expansion.


This is true. I cannot argue against this. I can see one side that would say High-Elves are a cosmetic addition and not really part of the Mordor expansion itself, but we are being idealistic. The truth of the matter is that this was a high-point expectation for people and it being part of the base expansion would have been appreciated and was undeniably expected by most fans.

3) The Release Date Is Too Soon! (July 31st, 2017)


I can see both sides. Some people who played the beta think the game is unpolished and not ready for release. I don't see many complaints regarding the content, but instead the balancing of classes. The biggest problem here is that, having played the beta significantly myself, it was experienced as either a 105 or 115 character with perfect legendary items, all class trait points, and raid gear. Unfortunately, the beta was never meant to be a beta to test out the balance of classes. It was meant to be a test of the content, the land, and the stress of the server. Class tuning can be done in patches and, if it makes leveling impossible, emergency hotfixes, in SSG's case, it does not need to delay the release of content they have been working on diligently for a very long time.

So. Where do I stand? 

Would I have liked to pay less for the ultimate bundle? sure. absolutely. I would have also liked to have paid less for


You probably get the point. The reality is that these collector's edition are meant to sell things that have little real monetary value to fans who DEEM them to have value. 

SSG took a bundle of content at roughly $180 dollars and scaled it down to $130. There is no rip-off here.

Should High-Elves have been part of Mordor Expansion? Yes. I feel SSG might have missed the mark here. But a business is a business.

Should the game have come out sooner? I played the beta. I tried the quests, it's ready to go. Could my champ be stronger? Could my minstrel have a better healing output? Yes. They will fix this in time.

I hope I don't offend anyone. I want to make sure that we have the facts before we claim that we are being ripped off and that SSG is ridiculous. They are a fair company and are giving us the best value for our buck while they also make a profit that they need to keep their business going and us, as fans, enjoying their world.

See you in Middle-Earth!

- The Bearded Minstrel.


Comments

  1. I feel that the agitators in the community are mostly shills and those that have projected their expectations on to the expansion like they were the majority. As usual it is the detractors that have the biggest voice because those of us that love this game aren't going to be upset.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Feeling that you're getting a fair deal is a perfectly legitimate POV. So is feeling you're getting ripped off.
    The real problem I'm having, are all those nimrods telling dissatisfied players, that they can just go and find some other game, or STFU. That's just sheer idiocy.

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  3. So, a token (no pun intended, swear) of my time. Or my 5 cents.

    I've been playing LoTRO on and off since 2011. Never got to level to max level during a certain expansion, but bought all of expansions and bought LP a couple of times. Also subed for a couple of months recently.

    So, coming from this PoV the prices ARE steep, even the 40USD option is steep. So, yeah, maybe for the hardcore fans the prices were ok. But the game want to have more players, isn't it right?

    Since the announcement of the expansion I was a bit frustrated with those. I don't care about the High-Elves but they not being in the basic pack is ridiculous, for instance.

    In the end, I will just wait for a sale and buy it half price. And that's my point, because of SSG decisions that's what many people will do. Not to mention that they didn't even try to hype the exp... The game already feels too much for a new player (having to buy god knows how many expansion, if you know what I mean). So having this prices discussion all over the game community just hurt them.

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