Standing Stone Games is getting with the times with regards to loot boxes for The Lord of the Rings Online. In this case, “getting with the times” means making its loot boxes less exploitative and more — though not completely — in line with the goals stated by Turbine years ago when LotRO first went free-to-play.

Executive Producer Rob “Severlin” Ciccolini laid out the company’s plans on the forums yesterday, laying out several bold notions, including “There should be no gear in lootboxes that you don’t have a chance to acquire by playing the game” and “Gear that comes from a new Raid at the highest difficulty, or the equivalent raid completion gated vendor, will always have more power than comparable gear that comes directly from lootboxes.” Considering how things used to be, this is the absolute least SSG could have done to fix it.

Severlin encourages people to “let us hear it” if SSG strays from these “meta-rules” in the future. That said, the last time someone tried to point out LotRO going back on its word regarding selling gear, Turbine said that it didn’t remember making promises about them and then said it would never sell end-game gear. So take all this with a grain of Shire salt.

These new loot boxes, as well as changes to Embers and Ashes of Enchantment, will go live with Update 23.

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