Chief among the topics was Update 10, of which the team spilled a host of details. The update will go to the test server next week, and promises to contain new armor sets, standardized power pools, the removal of dread on the landscape, a big change to Wardens, and the second half of the instance cluster. Turbine also said that while Update 10 won't have a new book in the epic story, Update 11 definitely will (and it'll be "super-sized"). Update 11 is also slated to add a whole new region to the game that includes mounted and standard combat.
We've got the beefy Q&A transcript for you after the jump, so check it out!
A1: We are removing dread from defeat on landscape. Fate's potency is increasing. Power pools are being standardized. Both the new instances/raids and existing Scaling Instances are receiving new loot. New armour sets are coming in, along with First Age legendary items. Wardens are being switched to use agility as their main stat (there will be a grace period to allow you to get gear).
Q2: Any news of when you are going to release the second part of the instance cluster?
A2: Update 10.
Q3: Can we please get an ETA for Update 10?
A3: It will be on Bullroarer next week!
Q4: When are the class updates planned to happen?
A4: We are laying the groundwork now (and there's lots of it). Later this year, we'll see the big changes.
Q5: Will class updates also bring updates to creep classes?
A5: We need to see if the freep changes entirely explode in a fiery train wreck first.
Q6: My Kinship doesn't show up in MyLotro, will be any fixing for us?
A6: We're aware that some kinships have this problem. We're actually looking into some major changes for this year.
Q7: Will housing get a much-deserved revamp?
A7: This is also on the docket for later this year. We're testing out some ideas now and we'll see what shakes out.
Q8: Can we please have some competitions for the community to design cosmetics for our characters and war-steeds?
A8: We would love to! We are working with the various parties needed to set something like this up.
Q9: With the DG and ITA clusters both getting scaled, are you planning to regularly scale more old content in future updates?
A9: We're always looking to give old content new love and you can look forward to seeing more of this in the future.
Q10: What about server transfers? Any news on making it easier?
A10: I spoke to customer service about this and they recognize it as a gap in our service offerings. They're currently investigating ways to make it as easy as a name change. No details, but it's being looked at.
Q11: Will Galuhad's Kinship proposal ever be considered?
A11: That's a tall order (and a great proposal). Kins need a lot of work. That work sits behind the class work and housing. After we bang those things out, if I'm not summarily executed, I would like to get kins to where they ought to be.
Q12: What are your plans to improve server stability and prevent lag spikes?
A12: Performance tuning is an ongoing process. It's something we work on with every patch and update. It's a difficult problem with no simple solutions.
Q13 Will we have our faction rep mounts appearance for use as war-steed cosmetics?
A13 At this time, there is no plan to re-visit rep mounts as war-steed cosmetics.
Q14: Are there any plans to update the character models and animations?
A14: I spoke with our art director, here's what he said: "Tinkering with avatars can be risky. Players become very attached to the 'look and feel' of their character. It's very personal. That said, we are discussing the best way to make upgrades and changes. We'll be very interested in player feedback and suggestions as to how to go about making such dramatic changes. But yes, it's something we're currently investigating."
Q15: Any idea when the destiny point perks replacement will be implemented?
A15: This hasn't been forgotten. We're trying to get these back in a good spot rather than slapping them back in somewhere clunky.
Q16: Are the beard shaving and beardless Legolas Sapience community update videos still in the works?
A16: Yes! At least the Legolas beardless one. Turns out making the shaving one was more challenging than I expected.
Q17: What's the reasoning of effectively removing player interrupt skills from the game?
A17: We standardized the times to make it more of a mechanic to react to an event, instead of just allowing constant spam. Now it requires an active decision.
Q18: Will Update 10 include a new epic book?
A18: Update 10 will not include a new epic book, but there is a super-sized epic being worked on for Update 11!
Q19: What can we expect for loot in older scaling instances in the future?
A19: Older scaling instances can expect to see their loot revamped with the oportunity to get rare through legendary gear.
Q20: How about seasonal changes in the homesteads?
A20: It's something we'd like to do in both homesteads and major towns, but we'll have to see.
Q21: Are there new mounted combat things on the horizon?
A21: We're looking at some exciting things for the new region. We have some tricks up our sleeves.
Q22: Will we ever get an option to change race?
A22: We don't have any plans to add this.
Q23: I just want to tell Rockx that I take back everything I said about the Captain shield. I'm in love with my new shiny.
Q24: Will we be able to buy more wardrobe space anytime soon?
A24: It's something we're looking into. There are technical issues around storage and inventory.
Q25: Would you guys make the Ost Dunnoth gear medallions/marks purchasable?
A25: Yes. It's already in the works.
Q26: Can we get some info on the landmass?
A26: It will be comparable in size to Great River. It will support mounted and unmounted combat.
Q27: Any chance of more war-steed items not from the store?
A27: Yes. We'll talk more about it after Update 10.
Q28: Will Update 10 eliminate forced emotes?
A28: No, but players will have the option to opt out.
Q29: Will hunters get more survivability, akin to the survivability of almost every other (non-tank) class?
A29: Future updates to classes will make things like this a choice but not a given.
Q30: What does standardizing power pools mean?
A30: Power pools will seem less random between similar classes. This will clear the way to make overall class updates easier in the future.
Q31: What was the reason for getting rid of symbol drops in Durch and Twins? They actually created a lot of raid activity.
A31: We wanted to reserve major rewards for completing an instance. It also lets us standardize how these things are earned. They're still available on challenge mode.
Q32: Will this [new] region come with Update 10 or Update 11?
A32: Update 11.
Q33: Will the forced emote opt out be in the store or not?
A33: It will not be in the store. It will be a free option for all players.
Q34: There is a lot of talk about balance on the 'Moors. Are you currently looking into this for better balance between sides?
A34: There's always a lot of talk about balance in the 'Moors. It is built to shift back and forth. Next month we'll bring a PvP dev to talk more about it.
Q35: How many people from the art team hide in the restroom to doodle possible looks for Minas Tirith?
A35: Two people just said seven. So we'll go with that.
Q36: Other classes don't have to give up DPS to survive, why do Hunters have to do so?
A36: With upcoming class changes ALL CLASSES will have some difficult choices.
Q37: Is there an ETA for a revamp to the forums? What's been done to the main LotRO site looks really nice.
A37: No ETA, but yes there are many changes coming to the forums and community sites. Soon. The real one, not Sapience soon.
Q38: Please tell us more! What do you mean all classes have to choose?
A38: We'll talk more in future chats.
Q39: Can we expect to get Second Age [legendary items] relatively easily once First Ages arrive on the scene?
A39: Second Ages will be available for marks, medallions, and/or seals.
Q40: Sapience hasn't made a reference chart for developer #vagueness yet has he?
A40: I can barely understand when they speak English, I can't translate that stuff!