Andang’s Top 10 Changes to PvP

March 26, 2012

General, Monster Play

After the disappointing Update 6 PvP changes I decided to talk about what I would want Turbine to change to make the game better.  Here are 10 changes that I think PvP is really missing.

10. Delving Boss drops were bad before Update 6 and now they are terrible. 
When they got rid of the delving currency they never really replaced it with anything.  Now there is not really any point to go into the Delving of Fror.  Delving needs to have a purpose for players to continue to go down into the depths of the Moors.

9. Players need better quest rewards.
All quests should give players infamy otherwise they are useless.  Currently there are several quests that only give you commendations and nothing else.  This is a problem because the quests that give players infamy also give more commendations making the quests that don’t give any infamy truly worthless to a PvP player.

8. Give free to play players a way to get into the Moors on Freep side.
There needs to be a way for players to buy a one-time account wide access pass to Freep side in the Moors.  I know several players that have purchased VIP just to get into the Moors on their Freep.  They really don’t like to have to keep paying money just to get really the only content that is still only VIP.

7. Give us more things to spend commendations on so that we actually have to make a choice on what we want to spend our currency on.
There are just not enough things for players to spend their money on and really it makes the cap on commendations annoying.

6. Players need things to group for when the Moors gets a little boring.
I propose that we give players PvP instances/skirmishes that allow them and NPCs to try to take over a map.  A side wins when it has all the contestable locations or when it gets the enemy sides respawn count down to zero.  This would play out a lot like conquest mode in EA’s Battlefield series but with NPCs.

5. Give a story to Creep side for players to really see what it is like to be a Creep.
We have been able to take over the enemy side in story already why not introduce one into the Moors.  This would give players a reason to the fighting in the Moors and I think it could really help pull new players into the Moors.  Also I would like to see a whole book of the Epic Story from the bad guys’ point of view.

4. Get rid of the Commendation system or at least the cap in PvP.
I mean we had a good thing going with the destiny points system that was in place before Update 6.  It also gave purpose to the delving.  While it is nice that Turbine was looking at PvP this change was not a needed one and really I would like to spend my 100,000 destiny points on permanent changes to my Creep instead of just temporary buffs for players to have.

3. A new zone would be nice.
I would even be glad if they just expanded the Moors.  I mean they could even just go further into the Misty Mountains and I would be fine with that.  Really just give us new textures to look at Turbine please….please!  It has been almost 5 years since Turbine has released a new zone for PvP and the 5th Anniversary would be a great time to give PvP players a new place to play.

2. If players had an equal amount of classes on Creep side as they did Freep side then I think the game would feel much more balanced.
Just by introducing an equal amount of classes Turbine could fix many of the gripes players have about the current state of PvP.  Also it would be fun to have more than the 6 current classes found in PvP.  They could even just get 1 class but make it more complex than the current classes, much like the RK was to the Freep characters.

1. My number one change for PvP is a really simple one.  I think if turbine tripled the amount of ranks players can achieve in the same amount of XP then you would have a better sense of progression.
It is a long way from rank 5 to 6 let alone rank 14 to 15.  This is really the only place that LotRO has a grind and I think Turbine could fix it easily just by introducing more ranks within the current structure. It would also increase player excitement if they were ranking up every couple of days in PvP and in turn would make the grind much easier to swallow.  Players don’t have to go from 1 to 75 instead they go from 1 to 2 then 2 to 3 and after a ton of baby steps they finally make 75.  This is how PvP advancement should be for players.  I am not saying to decrease the amount of XP players need to earn I am just saying make it worth their time.

So do you agree with this list?  Do you have any changes you would want?  Please put your changes and comments in the chat below and maybe your change will make my next list when Turbine makes more changes to PvP.

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About Andang

A lifelong Tolkien fan, Andang loves just about anything related to Tolkien. Andang is also a lifelong hardcore gamer with a huge love for any genre of game, as long as it is good. Andang currently writes for A Casual Stroll to Mordor and Middle-Earth Network's Gaming Team. He is also a co-host on Random Fandom, a weekly news podcast here on Middle-Earth Network. You can also find Andang on his YouTube channel and his Facebook page and if all that is not enough he has a twitter as well.

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18 Responses to “Andang’s Top 10 Changes to PvP”

  1. mmicnova Says:

    you make some very good points and i would like to discuss a few of them from a freep perspective, if i may.

    8. Give free to play players a way to get into the Moors on Freep side – this will strongly unbalance the moors in the first 2 weeks, after which more creeps will start to appear since more players will have a taste for it. i buy vip once in a while but almost never go to the moors. there’s just never anything to do. there are some quests which i avoid because i know i won’t play long enough to get any good rewards, and it takes me forever to even find a group and start battling creeps since the area is more or less deserted (on a not-so-small server, gilrain)

    5. Give a story to Creep side for players to really see what it is like to be a Creep – how about an introductory area for creeps, the same kind that freeps have? when i made a creep i was just kicked in the moors with no idea what to do. i would love to start playing a creep in a logical way as i am growing just a bit weary of the “good” side.

    3. A new zone would be nice – this is something that appears regularly as a demand from the player base to turbine. i can only imagine the great fun it would be to hunt freeps as a sabertooth in a setting like forochel…

    2. If players had an equal amount of classes on Creep side as they did Freep side then I think the game would feel much more balanced – this goes hand in hand with what i said previously, give me more options please :) there are so many mobs in PvE area that have potential to be creeps.

    1. My number one change for PvP is a really simple one. I think if turbine tripled the amount of ranks players can achieve in the same amount of XP then you would have a better sense of progression – this is something i totally agree with as a freep. i want those little icons next to my name to change as often as possible, otherwise i can’t really show off how cool i am. and if you think showing off isn’t important, just think of all the players that were running around with wyrmscale cloaks or hele armor back in the day. we need to show how cool we are, and where we’ve been, and what we’ve done, that’s why titles are there too!!

    if LotRo would be more pvp oriented, with a well structured creep side and a means for all freeps to go to the respective area(s) and do battle, well, it would be a dream come true. i know i would never grind again, i’d just battle creeps with my raid mates or battle my raid mates with my creep mates :D and all just to show the world how cool i am :D


  2. Andy Says:

    I’ve often suggested free weekends so people can tryout the creep classes before they sink TP’s into one they dont like. No reason a free weekend couldnt be offered to f2p freeps. Obviously not more than once a quarter otherwise there’s no real call for vip on freep side at all.

    Token based play time on the moors could be another option. But that has 2 downsides I can see to it. The first is you could hit the moors and waste half your time riding about trying to see if there’s action happening. And the second is that as a token it would be another item in the store that could be placed on the pile of new things that cant be bought from TP earned in game, without abusing the rep token and alt creation/deletion combo.

    I’d like someway for turbine to allow f2p’s into the moors but at the same time pvp is really all that vip’s have left thats truly vip only.

    Questwise it’d maybe be an idea for them to add in more quests to the creep side, however have them set on somekind of daily randomization thing so that for those that exclusively play a creep dont always know what quests they’ll be given by an npc.

    Maybe have a tower set as a daily target that gives more infamy than the rest, quest shared on both sides so the fights dont end up bogging down at one particular place (or pillar).

    A new zone could be designed with the daily target thing in mind with various differing locations. Mountain stronghold with overhangs that obscure part of the attacking route from arrowfire for example. Basically locations that will steer people away from the ball up “tactic”.


  3. Bloodspill Says:

    I agree with a lot of things on the list, new area and a better storyline for creeps would be great. I definatly agree with needing a better sense of progression, being stuck at the same rank for almost a year now I feel like everyday is a grind with minimal reward.

    My main gripe with PvP currently is the lack of actual PvP, someone can rank up without ever taking on another player and I personally think that is wrong. I belive something in the Moors should be achievable only by PvP such as rank, sure let people get stronger and more viable by questing but lets have some indication that a person has put time and effort into fighting for their chosen side. Freeps in particular need more of a reason to fight rather than just take keeps and flip sides to do the same things on creep.

    I think you have adressed the main issues, I could only add smaller things which would be nice but only once major things are fixed. For example lack of a creep mailbox, not being able to examine other creeps and bugs that have been in the Moors for years.


  4. scott Says:

    I love the idea of spending TP one time for a permanant access to the moors on the Freep side. Maybe 1000 TP? I was VIP forever (ok 3 years) but I’m Premium now and I have every quest pack but 2, every skirmish but 2 and I just bought the premium wallet. The only thing I’m loosing by not having VIP is moors access. I don’t see the point of VIP anymore, and I have two rank 6 toons. The moors is a grind, I would rather level an alt, but I would grind for TP to get moors access if that was available. The VIPs would scream however if Turbine ever did that I think.


  5. CJ Says:

    Def agree. These are all reasons I gave up on PVP in LOTRO and love PVP in SWTOR: more commendations for you time, faster ranking, choice of world or instanced PVP. PVP gear in LOTRO was still too much of a grind (and luck-based) last I played.


  6. Avatar of oaric
    oaric Says:

    I’ve played lotro for awhile now (2+ years) but am only new-come to PvP – just started up a month or so ago. While I was resistent to the idea of PvP for a long time, I’ve come to find playing creepside is a blast, and I totally enjoy collecting my hobbit feet, dwarf beards, and so forth.

    I agree pretty much with all of these points, especially No. 8 and 1. The server I’m on is seeing a slight decline in freep activity to some extent (from what I gather from the old-timers), so boosting the player base’s ability to try out freepside would be a benefit. And as a former VIP-turned-Premium (with the occasional month sub to unlock stuff for new alts), I would definitely buy the ability to dabble in freep-play if I could, as I have enjoyed dabbling with creepside.

    Regarding #1, definitely agree. I’m in the middle of my R5-R6 level, and man its taking forever. After that, I basically have no hope of actually ranking again for the rest of the year, as I’m more of casual PvPer. More level/rank benchmarks would at least give me the impression that I’m continuing and progressing, even if there was little inherent change in doing so, and invigorate my motivation to play more.

    One suggestion I would have: somehow modify the deed system to make it seem like you’re progressing faster – i.e., currently, slayer deeds are advanced by kill shot only – my friend has a defiler, and the guy basically never gets any kill shots on freeps (as a BA, I personally don’t suffer this, and in fact the kill shots are prob skewed more to me). Maybe extend credit to everyone in the group/raid or something, then increase the number needed for each tier (as it is, the idea of killing an RK, for example, 500 times pretty much means I’ll never accomplish that deed)… again, giving us the idea of quicker progress will makes us feel like we’re accomplishing something.


  7. Rinvan Says:

    While I don’t play in the moors, a new PVP zone would be great. Hopefully something new is finally coming in Rider of Rohan.


  8. Dan Says:

    As someone who has only recently started trying out a new creep on the Moors, I think the biggest problem I see is the fact that the commendation costs for new skills is sooo high that there is a disincentive for playing at all, because progress essentially seems hopeless. I can rank up much more quickly that I can buy skills that actually suit my rank. As a result, I feel relatively weak and PvP is hopeless.


  9. Dirhallith Says:

    Since many of your listed topics are discussed almost ad nauseum recently on the forums, I’ll just hit your first point.

    I think what Turbine tried to go for was the same scale we get in leveling our characters up (from 1-75 as it stands now) and I have a feeling that scale translated poorly to PvP ranks. I don’t believe that the solution is to have it so we’re ranking up every few days (that can take the fun out of it for some people, and the ability to even set goals for oneself in PvP – not to mention taking away what’s special about high ranks), but I do think some of the gaps between higher ranks needs to be scaled back a bit. If the solution is to add more ranks on top of 15, then great, but the grind really is crazy to get to Tyrant/Captain-General.


  10. Ian Says:

    Turbine have had 5 years to make the Ettenmoors into a more enjoyable and engaging place. I dont see any evidence to suggest the next 5 years will be any different.


    • Ham Says:

      LOTRO was always specifically billed as a PVE game. PVP is a nice side dish but will never become the main focus of the devs.

      To be fair though, Turbine is doing a wonderful job with PVE plot from the perspective of a Tolkien fan.

      I have this grand dream that, once the story is complete, Turbine will go back and spend time from the bad guys’ perspective, and then PVP could really blossom! I’ve always hoped for some shared areas. How cool would it be if the creeps could invade a freep zone one weekend a month? :)


      • Tony Says:

        I wish they’d build areas with that in mind, but that PvE focus you mention there makes that impossible. Many people on forums have screamed at the top of their lungs if someone even suggests such a thing is possible because they see PvP as the devil.

        Turbine seems to have managed this from the “well, we know which side wins already” angle and I’ve never really agreed with that. We’d obviously never see an invasion in the Shire, but as we head south and east that becomes less true.

        I personally do think there should be at least one area that combines PvP and PvE more fully aside from the limited extent that it’s done in the Moors. And if people hate that? Oh well, Turbine can build another PvE only zone or something… but it’s not like there aren’t plenty already.


  11. Tony Says:

    I know recently that Rift added many more ranks to their PVP recently and it seemed to go well overall. Hitting those things somewhat regularly is a huge incentive… Even if it takes as long to hit the huge milestones as it does now, interspersing more ranks into the existing ones (even doubling the amount) would go a long way to getting me to bother again.


  12. Andy Says:

    It has always seemed a bit odd that you can gain rank in pvp by not actually doing any pvp but by questing in an actively hostile environment. To me pvp rank should be a badge of honour that you’ve earned through blood sweat and time.

    More ranks do make sense if the level caps gone up although if the ranks are named rather than numbers it could start to get slightly silly once you get to the higher ones unless they redo the names from the ground up.

    If it isnt broken 2 things must be done

    1. resist the urge to fix it
    2. dont poke it until it does break

    Moors pvp is a good solid foundation so it has plenty to build on without ruining the current content.


  13. Lao Says:

    Okay so I have a couple of thought trails here. Firstly, someone mentioned about tokens for creep play. How about of they had a token based on being in combat. So lest say that you have an hours token which counts down only when your fighting. Think it would work well.

    Secondly about ranks, I agree that ranks 1-4 are easy, I got to R4 in 3 days but now I need 9k rep to get R5 and I’m literally dreading it. Let’s just say for round figures that it’s 1 million reknown for rank 15. How about increasing the amount of ranks available so that the existing players on R15 become R20 and it gives the players a more realistic target. That way there is still a bit of a grind, the people who already done it don’t lose out and the rest of us have more realistic interim targets to achieve


  14. Gothnon Says:

    There’s no reason at all rank 15 shouldn’t be made more attainable for all now that we have audacity. Audacity has will scale, r15 won’t. But turbine will leave ranks as it is IMO for one reason only- they store. They want you to BUY those things in the store rather than earn it. This is the number one problem with this game now- things that would make sense if a subscription was all we needed to play, but now that everything in the game essentially is itemized and has a price tag, you won’t see it happen. Rank 15 is a goal few will achieve, but the store makes that goal largely irelevant anyway. Unless of course you think it’s worth trying to achieve those skills/traits locked behind those ranks, spending likely years worth of time to do so, versus paying 5-10 dollars. It should be obvious what turbine would prefer you do…play the game less, spend more…


  15. Argus Says:

    For me… real PVP games can be found in FPS games, were player “rl” skills count, and not how long you have played and gained top gear etc… but each to its own taste… LOTR was never intended as a PVP game as well.

    When that is said, I notice an elitisme in the pvp gilrain server, were those who have played there for ages and have achieved high ranks on the freep side, rarly or almost never bother to form teams. It seems they want to be the only one with the high ranks, I cannot find another explanation. While on the creep side there is excellent cooperation how to beat up the freeps (no wounder, since the lack of teamwork there)…

    So playing a creep is great fun for me, but freep side is plain solo grinding and hard when the creeps gang up on you, and none of the freep side want to help out, but hang back protecting their precious high ranks :-)


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