From the Official LOTRO Forums:
Please join us this weekend to preview an Update 18 build. We welcome your feedback and would particularly appreciate feedback on the difficulty of the new instances, the PvMP performance override option, and availability of mobs when trying to complete quests in Far Anórien.
The following release notes are for the Bullroarer public test server only and may not reflect the final list of changes or updates included at release.
These notes are not final and should be viewed as a work in progress and subject to change.
The Eyes and Guard Tavern is open!
The character database has been wiped. You can re-copy your live characters using the transfer wizard on your live launcher.
The Epic book quests for this update will not be available during this open beta session
The new Battle of the Pelennor Fields instances and Featured Instance system do not yet have their rewards hooked up
German and French localization has not been completed for U18 content and features
In this build details will not display on character faces in character select or character generation
Resource nodes have not yet been placed in Far Anórien
Important Note: Please be aware that the build you are seeing here is a work in progress and is by no means the finished Update 17.2 product. There are items that are not yet complete. There may also be items missing from this initial list, this is not intentional and will be added as we progress.
This update includes the new region of Far Anórien and three new scaling instances in the Battle of the Pelennor Fields instance cluster. With Update 18 you can now advance to level 105. All scaling instances and skirmishes can now be played at level 105, however Epic Battles will remain capped at level 100 for now. We have added a rotating Featured Instance to Instance Finder for character above level 99.
Eyes & Guard Tavern:
- Sarumango now lets you level up to 105.
- Eldorudo now has armour and jewellery for level 105 characters.
- Rock now gives out festival tokens.
- Player characters can now advance to level 105. Monster player characters are now level 105.
- You can now access the Far Anórien region of Middle-earth
- The Instance Join panel has been updated to feature the new instances of Update 18 – The Battle of the Pelennor Fields. These new instances: Blood of the Black Serpent, Quays of the Harlond, and The Silent Street can be found under the Pelennor label in the Instance list.
- For characters level 100 and higher, the Featured Instance can be accessed through the Instance Finder Specific Tab and will award extra rewards once daily for completing the listed instance. The Featured Instance will change weekly.
- There’s a new “PvMP Performance Override” option on the Graphics page. This option is turned on by default. With the option set, entering monsterplay areas will automatically set various advanced graphics and UI options to lower values temporarily to improve PvMP performance. Your settings will be restorted up leaving monsterplay areas.
- There is a new option in advanced graphics “Avatar Texture Compositing”. Disabling this option reduces facial details displayed in game and may improve client performance
Quests and Festivals:
- Reduced the timer on Bingo Week 27, ‘Bingo’s Scattered Thoughts’ (from eight minutes to two).
- Legolas and Sigferth in III.13.1 shouldn’t fall through the floor anymore.
- Elladan’s hair color should now match wherever he shows up in III.2.15.
- The enemies in III.13.8 should no longer become unattackable if the player vanishes during combat.
- It should now be impossible to wedge yourself between the stairs and the red barrier wall during III.2.8.
- New dyes have been added to the seasonal festivals! Look for four new exclusive dyes available in the Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter festivals this year. In each festival, two of the new dyes will be available for festival currency, and two will be available for Mithril Coins. The dyes available for Mithril Coins this year will be available for festival currency next year, and vice versa.
- The Glorious Beer-mug trophy is now available to barter during the Anniversary festival.
- During seasonal festivals, festival tokens can now be bartered for each other by visiting the Token Exchange vendor at the Party Tree in Bywater.
Combat and Skills:
- The effect of Block, Parry, and Evade ratings on your avoidance chance and partial avoidance mitigation have changed. The caps and rating contribution have all been modified so that you are much more likely to partially avoid an attack, and partial avoidances mitigate more damage, while your chance to fully avoid an attack is reduced.
- Characters that wear medium armour will need less mitigation to reach their mitigation cap than heavy armour wearers do.
- The formula for converting physical/tactical/ranged mastery to damage bonus percent has been changed to remove diminishing returns – you can now get more damage bonus for higher mastery points to a level-based cap. The mastery cap increases above level 100.
- NPC formations, such as Corsair Captains and their allies, should path more smoothly relative to one another.
- Burglars can now use bows.
- Burglars now recieve 5 Tactical Mastery for every point of Agility.
- This change was in 17.2, but it looks like the release note didn’t make it: Hunter Guide skill confirmation dialogues now have a countdown timer that indicates how long the player has to accept the travel.
- Swift Blade now counts towards the Champion deed “Swift to Anger”.
- All types of archers now advance the Captain deed “Precise Ally”.
- The Unique Gem of Faith and Unique Rune of Courage give less partial avoidance mitigation.
- You can now loot individual items out of open crafting nodes without getting dismounted.
- You can now use ó, as in Anórien in various search fields.
- Fixed an issue where fishing rods were not visible while fishing if the main-hand equipment was hidden. Cosmetically hidden fishing rods should now become visible while fishing.
- Items that can’t be sold to vendors but have a monetary value no longer show their worth in examination tooltips.
- Crafting tutorial quests Introduction to Weaponsmithy and Introduction to Woodworking now offer more crafted weapon options to fulfill the quest.
- Horse-lord armour and jewellery recipes are now available from Hytbold barter vendors.
- You are now able to barter Hytbold tokens for Wold, Norcrofts, Entwash Vale, or Sutcrofts rep by talking to Rinwald.
- Non-unique special class quest items such as Ashen Gorthorog Horns will now stack up to 100.
- Fixed various cosmetic problems around weapon glows.
- Fixed a few minor UI problems in the Social/Fellowing/Open Fellowships tab.
- Client load and memory usage should be slightly reduced around Minas Tirith and greatly reduced in the Minas Tirith Epic Battles. This work is ongoing.
- Store – Opening the store should no longer cause client crashes.
- Store – After completing a PayPal transaction, the pop up window should now close.