#LOTRO: Helms Deep NDA Lifted

November 4, 2013


Sapience has posted on the forums that the NDA that was clamming up folks about their time in the Helms Deep beta program has officially been lifted.

I was part of the beta program but I only logged in a few times total so I am by no means the person that can explain to you all the details with the new expansion.

Do any of you have items and opinions to share about the changes. I know the class changes are a huge deal but I’d also be interested in any updates to mounted combat and of course how does Helms Deep system work?

We do have an opportunity to ask Turbine some questions directly so if you have any burning questions head over to this post and leave your question in the comment!

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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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16 Responses to “#LOTRO: Helms Deep NDA Lifted”

  1. Taeniel Says:

    I was also in the beta, but didn’t have as much time as I would’ve liked to play through it. The new trait trees are definitely going to take some studying, and I found as a Hunter that I really missed my Improved Swift Bow — that skill has been part of my rotation since I was a wee baby Hunter, and without it, there’s this weird lopsided hole in my play. I suppose I’ll get used to it eventually.

    I avoided the epic because I wanted to stay away from spoilers, and I haven’t yet had a chance to play the mass battle system either. It’s definitely a really big change, and I expect that like with most changes, there will be those who love it and those who hate it.


  2. Pasduil Says:

    Strange lack of blog posts since the NDA was lifted.

    In comment threads and forums people gave the impression they were dying to tell all the minute they were allowed to.


    • Joshua Says:

      Well, it’s not secret that Merric and Goldenstar are both a bit burned out on LOTRO. Which is entirely understandable, given how much time they’ve devoted to playing it, writing about it, and podcasting about it over the years.

      There’s also, perhaps counter-intuitively, not that much to say about changes this sweeping. How any given person will feel about them is ultimately a matter of taste. So it’s hard to make any statements about Helm’s Deep that are even remotely objective. Harder than usual, even.


    • Grayman Says:

      I’m not following all the blogs so I don’t know how much of the Beta vitriol has spilled over to there, but on our kinship forums there are already a few posts from people who are leaving the game. They refer to the class overhaul as a deal-breaker. Most aren’t providing highly detailed reasons; they’re simply stating that in their opinion the changes are too severe and too limiting, especially for end game players, and that they’re not having fun playing their toons under the new system.

      In the Beta forums there were literally hundreds of complaints that people felt guilty not being able to tell their friends what was coming, and I suspect that now that the NDA has been lifted that’s what they’re doing(telling their friends) as opposed to posting on public blogs.


  3. baue8673 Says:

    So, not to be a doom and gloomer, but is there more to this expansion that I am not seeing? Right now it seems like 10 levels and epic battles. For a fairly significant price. Am I missing some instances down the road they have promised? Or some more regions?


  4. Vraethir Says:

    There are a lot of posts in the LOTRO forums detailing a number of changes. Between the Class Guides that the testers created to information on Housing, LI Legacies, Relics, How the Trait Trees work, Crafting changes, Threat changes, etc… All of them are found within the main Game Discussion forum subset.


  5. Gorfaroth Says:

    So far as I’ve seen, the major discussion is not about the beta, it is whether people will continue on live for HD.


  6. Brynhildn Says:

    There’s a lot that is getting changed, not all for the better. The threat/Warden changes combined with no gear being locked in slot during combat means the tank has to:

    1. Correctly ascertain what level of DPS they need to hold threat and how many slots they need to allocate towards DPS gear
    2. Predict how much damage they can take, how much healing is available and allocate gear towards survivability.

    If either of these is off, problems arise and the group potentially wipes. No offtanks swapping to tank sets, no swapping Warden carvings to manage power as gambit rotations fluctuate. There are balance issues too regarding how much time it takes to tier up a gambit line and by extension maintaining the buffs Warden is balanced around.


  7. Tinker Says:

    I was in beta and feel the lose of my characters’ skills very deeply. As for BB: I remain totally underwhelmed. This is the first expansion that I have not pre-ordered. Will likely get HD with TP’s. Sadly, most of my kinnies have left the game in the past year and the ones who plan on checking in for HD will probably not stay once they see the changes. Am concerned this is going to be another ‘New Game Enhancement’ (NGE) debacle ala SWG, with similar fail results. Though I cannot imagine WB or Turbine will ever apologize the way Sony did. More’s the pity.


  8. Stormwaltz Says:

    I’ll just cut & paste what I said on Massively:

    I’ve been in the beta since August. In my opinion, my six year-old Lore-Master has been ruined, and I will be uninstalling when Helm’s Deep goes live.

    I’ve enjoyed playing the LM all this time because they were a generalist class – and, by the game’s own notation, an “advanced” class. The LM is a Swiss Army knife or astromech droid; able to handle everything, but not easily. You needed skill and experience.

    Forcing mandatory specialization on a class I loved for generalization, requiring me to pick which 33% of the skills and traits I’ve used constantly for the last six years I get to keep… it’s just too much.

    This was not an easy decision for me. I’m a lifer, I’ve purchased all the expansions until now, and I’ve bought Turbine Points many times. LotRO has been my go-to MMG since Oct 19, 2007, and I’ve sunk over 1400 hours into it.


    • Kanati Says:

      That about how I feel, except I’ve put more hours and fewer years into the game.

      The LM isn’t alone. Same goes for the Captain, the Burglar, and the Hunter but it was the Minstrel that got especially mauled by the Devs this time around. That said, I think anyone that played/plays a FOTM build of most classes will not notice much difference.

      I wasn’t against the skill-trees as a system, but a lot of the attendant class-changes seem half-baked, wrong-headed, or downright malicious. Lots of stupid, counterproductive, decisions like trying to make less used traitlines more compelling by nerfing them while buffing the traitlines “everyone” uses. This would seem to be exactly the wrong thing to do unless Turbine is setting the scene for making each class have just a single trait line rather than three in some future update.

      I was going to give my take on the classes that were changed for the worse (in my opinion), but others have put far more effort into documenting the changes. I doubt I have anything of worth to contribute to the discussion.

      So, Adapt or Ragequit?
      Obviously, everyone can make up their own minds for themselves after the Update hits, but I’m going to damn LOTRO with faint praise: I guess I’ll keep playing, for a while longer.

      That has more to do with the amount of time I have invested in my characters and the lack of alternative MMOs that interest me. With this update, LOTRO has become a second-tier, solo-only, casual game for me. I’ll faff around a bit and continue questing and leveling alts, so this isn’t one of those typical ragequit parting shots that one so frequently finds in the terminally toxic official forums, but I’m now past caring if Turbine ever fixes this debacle.


  9. Goreamir Says:

    They just need to get rid of the double point penalty for traiting outside the specialization. But I’m staying in the game. I know, a collective sigh of relief that I’m not leaving. Turbine can rest easy now. The world can rest easy actually. I’ll remove tongue from cheek now.


  10. Avatar of andyb
    andyb Says:

    I played some of the beta very early on so it might have changed by now but I wasnt a fan of the class tree at that time.

    Partly because it reminded me of back when they were revamping the warden and kept removing and adding skills so you suddenly found yourself underlevelled for a skill you’d adopted as your bread and butter in combat.

    And partly because they seemed to have just culled the existing skills to spread out across the gap to the new cap.

    Now I know that was early beta and they might have added in stuff that was new but going by past expansions there won’t be more than a single skill that is entirely new to the game and with the way the tree demanded points just to get some of the stuff I was put right off.

    One of the things I didnt like with RoR was that when you dinged there was nothing new to learn from the class trainer barring the upgraded skills that you’d been using for ages so wouldnt have anything shiny to play with. For RoR you dinged max level and got nothing but a hytbold grind, not good.

    It’s a shame to see them move away from the system they had as it had a uniqueness that worked well and the change seems like change for the sake of it rather than making the game more open or accessible.

    On a plus note they have given helms deep a better sense of scale than you got from the movie so thats something. And they do seemed to have learned from the volume of skill points the horse got which made the MC tree’s a joke.

    However with the persistent latency issues for mounted combat and what I saw of the class tree I’m not sure if I’ll have the desire to actually play the live game there.

    Happy with my decision not to buy until a sale.


  11. Avatar of Sullo
    Sullo Says:

    I’ll be very interested to see if the rumored Housing Chest Changes actually pan out, and what the cost of additional storage will be. (I’m referring to this post in the forums: http://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?529727-Helm-s-Deep-Housing-Chest-Changes). Can anyone who is in the beta confirm this?


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