Mostly it can be summed up into: What the heck are they thinking?
When I first looked at the different packages my first reaction was astonishment which then changed into disappointment and a bit of anger. I’m not really disappointed with the game since I like it as a whole. Sure it has some big problems (non-legendary Legendary weapons and the corresponding grind, boring and neglected pvp, watering down the game, and most importantly the lag and bugs that are becoming frequent) but no game is perfect. When it comes down to it, I like running around Middle Earth. But, I’ve found it more and more difficult to enjoy the game in the face of Turbine’s increasingly, glaringly obvious greed (or perhaps this is better directed towards WB). I love Tolkien and his work so it upsets me to see it twisted and used by a greedy company. A fair bit of what they do is antithetical to his work in my humble opinion. Yes, I know companies exist to make money and that yes, they should make money. But I suppose the better ones don’t plainly display their greed and usually at least back up the price with a good product and/or customer service. Turbine has always lacked in customer service but lately its product is becoming shoddier as well. I feel they’re being awfully bold to be charging the prices they are given the current state of bugs we’ve seen lately.
They released a video Riders of Rohan Teaser Trailer along with this pre-order announcement:
Okay, so there’s some mounted combat, which I didn’t find too exciting looking unfortunately, and a few shots of new areas. And what else? What about endgame content? Instance clusters and raids? Class updates? New class skills? Crafting? How many quest hubs? I’ve seen the arguments that Rohan will be three times the size of Moria!! Okay, so… that doesn’t mean much? Moria was vertical as well which made it feel even larger but this land will be flat. Also I can look to areas such as Dunbog or Forochel and find a large area with lots of dead space. When I look at that video I sure see a lot of space… a lot of open space with not a lot in it. I’m thinking they need all this open space for the mounted combat. And perhaps areas are not finished (yet with a September release date, I find that quite worrying in regards to polished content.) So size tells me nothing.
Aside from the lack of information, I’m struggling to see why the legendary edition is worth $70, which would buy you a whole new game such as Guild Wars 2. They seem to be charging a lot more for a lot less In the past we’ve had new game mechanics introduced: Moria and its legendary weapons or Mirkwood and its skirmishes, shared storage and wardrobe. Yet those expansions weren’t this expensive. I believe RoI’s top tier package was $50 and people got a lot more goodies. Let’s take a look at the extras on the legendary edition:
- Armour of the Eastemnet – It’s sorta cool but I can do without it. Not paying $30 extra.
- 6th Inventory Bag – I’d wanted this and was glad to hear of its arrival, but I can do without it. I honestly think this should have been in all pre-order versions as supposedly this was one of their incentives to get people to pre-order. Instead this is just like the expanded wallet. “Oh we’re listening to our fans and what you’ve asked for is finally coming!” *a few weeks later* “Here is it but you need to cough up money for it! Hurrah!” Apparently you can buy this as a stand alone account-wide purchase for 995TP. More about that later.
- Crystal of Remembrance – It would be nice to have an extra major legacy, but this pay to win stuff turns me off. You receive no extra points on your weapons to spend on this legacy, so really they’re a glorified legacy replacement scroll or stat scroll. This will also be available in the store. The store version will be per character though whilst if you buy the preorder, you get one per character I believe.
- Exclusive Rohan Content – Now this is the only thing that makes me go hmmmmm, because this content eventually leaves you with a skill for your warhorse. We’ve not heard what it will be and a lot of people are worried about it being a pay-to-win skill for our horses.
All in all, this expensive edition doesn’t look that exciting and has left quite a few people upset that Turbine is charging so much for even more in-game advantage. But many of us are upset at the $40 for the basic version because at this point it seems we’re being sold a glorified quest pack.
So why is Turbine going against somewhat industry standard for expansion pricing? How can they justify the increasing costs in the store? Jadzi on the official forums made some great points:
What bothers me is that here we have a pretty clear-cut comparison between RoI and RoR, which make many of the same kinds of offers. Yet, one is exponentially more expensive, despite giving comparatively less. It just feels like we’re being charged a premium without getting much to show for it.
Moreover, how on earth is it justified to charge 495 for Bags 4 and 5, then suddenly double to 995 for Bag 6? Yes, vault upgrades get that high, but at least those are relatively consistent, and inch up by 100 TP per box. How did we just suddenly jump to 995?
And Crystals of Remembrance? 995 a pop? Why? Scrolls of Delving are 195, while Star-lit Crystals and Empowerment Scrolls are 495? What is the justification for these sorts of pricing jumps?
For all of the negative that I’ve ranted about, the one thing I’m positive about is Turbine’s ability to make a great looking area with a good storyline. They most definitely did that in the Great River area. I was really pleased with it. I think that’s what makes this all so difficult. I don’t want to give in to their greed but I want to keep playing in Middle Earth. So I’ll wait. I’ll wait for more information. It seems that’s what most are doing. Let’s just hope it’s forthcoming and that they can show us that this is all worth it.