The CVG site has up a talk with Turbine's Jeffrey Steefel, looking out to the future of Lord of the Rings Online. It's a good discussion of not only the issues facing the game in the coming months, but the entire subscription-based MMO marketplace. The site asks some tough questions and Steefel has some good answers: like, why is an expansion for a primarily patch-supported game even neccessary?
The Turbine Executive Producer was upfront about their reasoning: "At the end of the day so much is going online, but retail is still very important. It's still a place where people learn about games, it's a place where if you're not on the shelf, at least from time to time, somehow there's implication you're not viable." Steefel also touches on how they keep their community as convival as it is, the 'world vs game' problem very MMO faces, and the ever-present console question. In his mind, the problem isn't how to get MMOs on consoles. The problem is, why aren't the big three helping companies like Turbine to get their products onto couches?