LOTRO Community Site Changes Coming

April 26, 2013

LOTRO News

Sapience has been giving us hints of changes to the my.lotro site that have been in the works and he has posted a listing of what updates we will see. The expected timeline of this update is mid to late May.

This below is a copy and paste from Sapience’s forum post of the changes coming.

Forums

The forums are going to be upgraded to a slightly newer version of VBulletin.
Changes will include:

  • The forum styling/appearance will be updated.
  • We will be adding a new forum home page that includes forum category navigation and feeds of recent turbine announcements/recent player discussions.
  • The reputation system will be discontinued.
  • Forum performance will be improved.
  • The forum layout and the number of forums will be streamlined to reduce the number of forums and sub-forums.
  • Our bug reporting system is being revamped. We will update the bug reporting links as soon as the new system is available.

Lorebook

The LOTRO Lorebook will be discontinued. Official Guides will be relocated to LOTRO.Com website. If you have created a guide and wish to save it, please copy it from the lorebook in the next few days. We will be creating a new “Player Created Guides” forum for you to post your guides in.

MyLOTRO

Several MyLOTRO components will be moving to LOTRO.com or retiring. Details are as follows:

  • The current player blog functionality will be discontinued. We are investigating ways of bringing blogging to players in the community site, but in the meantime existing player blogs can be exported for use at a later time. Exporting your blog will create an XML file containing all your blog entries, comments, and images, which can be imported into a variety of blogging platforms.
  • Character and guild data will be discontinued. Please note that this will also impact any systems that rely on character data including PVMP leaderboards, Character Signatures, and API functionality (data.lotro.com).
  • The Character Copy tool is being revamped and migrated to LOTRO.com.
  • The LOTRO referral system is being revamped and migrated to LOTRO.com. Please note that if you currently have active referrals, you will continue to accrue bonus points from your existing referrals, but you will be unable to redeem bonus points from your referral wallet or add new referrals until the new front-end of the referral system is launched.

LOTRO Lotteries

The LOTRO Lotteries will receive a slight refresh and a new widget that should make them easier to find and enter. Our current expectation is the new system will be available with the launch of the new community site.

Goldenstar’s Thoughts:

I have not much to comment on the forums other than I hope it works better for me. I’m one of the ones that frequently has a log out problem and it seems to happen most often when attempting a forum post.

The lorebook going away is a good and bad thing. The lorebook could have been so great if the data from inside the game was kept current and populated. It would have been a great out of game source for in-game data. Since it really couldn’t meet this role, I think it’s probably best it go away. I will point out the part that if you have any guides you submitted and want to keep, make sure you copy it now!

We already had news that the blogging would not continue at least not in its current form and not at new site launch. I’m also not upset about the character and guild data moving off but that may just be me. I know they had several problems with the character/kinship data not working for some folks. Mine always worked but I didn’t have much reason to go look at it, honestly.

I’m very happy to hear the lotteries aren’t going away! I keep forgetting about them lately but I know there’s lots who love them and why not? Who doesn’t love winning things and free stuff!

Join the discussion on the forums here!

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About Goldenstar

Goldenstar's primary happiness in games is anything that involves festivals, parties, cosmetics and pie. If there's any time after those things to kill bad guys, so be it.

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29 Responses to “LOTRO Community Site Changes Coming”

  1. Maliosi Says:

    I REALLY hope they save Sapience’s history of soon! :D

    And wonder what will happen with signatures, that was always a nice little feature…

    Reply

  2. Legotho Says:

    I’m despairing of this: forums are two a penny. The technology to run them is nothing special, and I don’t care who runs the “official” LotRO forums. If Turbine didn’t provide them, we’d soon move over to the best of the multitude. However, the Lorebook (and the other in-game data) is something that _only_ Turbine can provide, and they’re killing it off.

    While I can understand that providing a forum as far more of a PR requirement that the Lorebook, and that’s why one’s being improved, and the other killed off, technically, they’re exactly the other way around.

    Reply

    • Tule Says:

      I always felt that the lotro-wiki.com was always a better site overall for the information in the lorebook. The lorebook did have the nice google maps feature, but they didn’t keep that up to date.

      Reply

      • legotho Says:

        But that’s because the Lorebook’s been under-performing for years. It’s got direct access to the in-game database, so it *should* have all the text for all the quests, and the prerequisites, and follow ups. As well as that, it should have information on all the in-game items.

        Lotro-Wiki’s a superb effort, but it requires maintenance by dedicated players. When a new area is released it requires people to manually capture everything, and then isn’t exhaustive: it just records what they’ve found so far. When an existing area is revamped, it requires people to work through it again, carefully noting the differences, which is far harder than working against a blank slate. The Lorebook should have made all of this trivial.

        Reply

  3. Byrcha of Landroval Says:

    So, we’ll lose any user-defined content from people who are no longer around to copy it? And we lose the lorebook as an out-of-game reference? That is most unfortunate.

    Reply

  4. Tomsil Says:

    You can copy content from the Lorebook yourself for archiving purposes.
    Use the MediaWiki Export functionality for that:
    At http://lorebook.lotro.com/wiki/Special:Export

    Reply

  5. Peter Says:

    This makes me wonder if something I saw on the forums might have some truth to it: many people were wondering if all the out of game interaction with the game servers causes lag. Thus the character functionality is going away (sigs, char stats/progress, leader boards, etc). However, I do think they could have come up with a compromise: maybe just extract that data once or twice a day on a schedule instead of having it constantly refresh. Best of both worlds (unless it caused massive lag at the extract time). Whatever, we’ll learn to live without it.

    Reply

  6. Ravanel Says:

    On the one hand, the website really needed updating. Many parts were not working properly (for Europeans) for years: it felt like a big mess to me that didn’t get cleaned. Now it does.

    I’m not really fussed by Lorebook going away. In my opinion, the lotro-wiki has always been easier accessible for editors and more up to date. The character data going away is a big shame, though. I know of many people who like the PVMP stats website or the LOTRO stats check. Especially the former can be an incentive alone to play the game (how well did I do today in PvP?).

    I hope we’ll not loose tons of good info with the Lorebook going away. Anyone archiving is welcome to post their stuff at lotro-wiki!

    Reply

  7. Malacon Says:

    So instead of finally fixing their broken network they strip away user resources. Brilliant. While modern games are going above and beyond to provide game data offline to keep users using, Turbine in its usual disconnection from reality deems all outside game activity irrelevant.

    As mentioned the Lorebook had limited value but at least it was there. Better than nothing. Sad part here is they had 6 years to fix it. Six years to rebuild their broken backend network which has had problems since beta and yet they didn’t feel we were worth it.

    Oh well. One more nail in the coffin.

    Reply

  8. Thorcar Says:

    It is going to be a big loss to the PvMP community to lose the Black Appendage stat site. Vyxe has done a great job keeping that site running even after he has stepped away from the game.

    Reply

  9. Malhirviel Says:

    Overall I think Sapience does a pretty good job of responding to players when they have valid concerns, and ignoring people who are just complaining to complain. But I think he did not handle the situation with the forums very well.

    It is VERY clear that the forums have problems – slow load times, double-clicking required to visit a link, frequent logouts, etc. And yet he persists not only in asserting that there is no consistent problem, but proceeds to put down CSTM for “get[ting] their information from sources that might not be reliable or … repeating rumors they’ve heard.” He then complains that CSTM has never “reached out to [him]” about this issue. Well, jeez – is CSTM supposed to e-mail him every time they want to comment on something? The purpose of a fan site is for fans to be able to discuss their experiences with the game. And if fans are reporting having difficulty with a particular portion of the game, then it probably means that area is especially problematic. People typically don’t complain (as much) about things that are working well!

    I’d be very curious to hear an explanation from Sapience about his statement that, “only a small percentage of those who use the forums (regardles[sic] of what percentage of actual players that is) experience the issues reported.” What information is he using to make that claim? I have experienced these problems from the first day I used the forums, but I have never posted about them, or filed a ticket, because I figured it wouldn’t really do any good. That means my experiences (and, I’m sure, those of countless other people) are not represented in whatever information Turbine has about this problem. They may just not have a clear picture of how big the problem is.

    Whatever the case, it seems counterproductive to respond to a request to fix an aspect of the game with assertions that that aspect of the game is not problematic, but without providing any evidence for their position. It feels like they’re calling us liars, which doesn’t do anything for community relations. It would actually have been better if they’d said something like, “we know it’s a problem for some people, and we’re going to revamp the forums sometime in the future, but our top priority right now is addressing in-game issues.”

    For those who are interested, the quotes above come from this thread: http://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?&postid=6759946

    Reply

    • Tule Says:

      There are forums used in some versions of Bullroarer, and on Palantir, that are the old style of forums. And it was a noticeable and huge difference in performance when switching between beta game forums and the real forums. Basically their forums were great until they did the first revamp to the current system and they never recovered from that.

      I am very sure that the game developers know how slow the new forums are but the web sites are managed and run by a completely different department.

      Reply

  10. Hugestaff of Windfola Says:

    Unhappy about loss of sigs and rep, but more so about losing character stats, I have a couple of apps that depend on it, seems like they will become obsolete, and I found this very useful, as I could examine someone else’s setup and learn about ways to improve my own. I’m SOOOOO thrilled that they’re investing in referral system though, users have been screaming about that for years ;-)

    Reply

  11. Goreamir Says:

    If the lorebook is going, I wonder if this includes our character stat sheets (which were horribly outdated anyway) and the interactive map. If the map is going bye bye, I hope someone who knows the technical aspects will create their own map site like this one that has been defunct for a few years now:

    http://arda-online.com/map/

    Reply

    • Fatwise Says:

      Not quite as pretty as arda online, but still useful, and up to date: http://dynmap.ruslotro.com/

      Reply

      • Goreamir Says:

        Yeah,I’ve seen that site. I just like exploring the google maps style view of the game occasionally, especially when they add new territory to it. It’s the actual overhead view of the landscape basially. Is uses google maps technology, and there is a similar site with a WoW map, also very out of date.

        Reply

  12. Kidnova Says:

    I hope the money they save by stripping out all of the useful functionality of the community site and moving to the cheapest forums available will be put to good use on squashing in-game bugs. Once can hope right?

    Reply

  13. susan Says:

    any improvement to the forum will be most appreciated, the last few months have had such an increase in lag to the point that just getting to General Discussion can take minutes and infinite patience

    Reply

  14. Avatar of John
    John Says:

    We want to invite all MyLotro bloggers to export their MyLOTRO blogs and bring them over to thier free MyMiddle-earth blogs. Much of the community is already here for Casual Stroll and it is a great way to host your blogs in a fan run community.

    Reply

  15. Cadronas Says:

    Really happy that the dirty rumours of the lottery being scrapped is not true. Really disappointed however that the PVMP leaderboard is going. Was great to track my progress and know where I stand in terms of the wider player pool.

    Reply

    • TSU Says:

      Also happy that Lotteries will remain…I started using my.lotro and forums only because of this.
      I am devastated that we will be losing the Stats! Really don’t understand why…
      Oh well is will not impact on my gameplay as such but moreso ‘work’ time where I use them as excel training tools!

      Reply

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