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What's next for Return to Moria?

Tasmû udshik sha Zahar! It feels good to be back in a mine!

Greetings fellow Dwarves and Dwarf-friends. It's hard to believe it's been over four months since The Lord of the Rings: Return to Moria™ has launched. In that time, Epic named us one of the year's Legendary Titles and our players have rated us above four stars at both the Epic Games Store and Playstation 5. More importantly, I’m still waiting for someone to correctly translate the Khuzdul phrase at the end of the credits.

But as Durin’s folk would say "Igat rabbâ!” meaning “back to work.” That’s exactly what the teams here at Free Range Games and North Beach have been doing. We have been poring over your feedback and crafting our second title update. We don’t have an exact day for the launch yet, but we expect it in a matter of weeks– between the end of March and beginning of April.

Today’s blog is just a taste of news on the update. But don’t despair! This Friday, March 8, we will be hosting another Forge Side Chat in our Discord to talk more about it and take your questions. Plus we are partnering with the Nerd of the Rings YouTube channel to stream a live play of the update and really show off the changes, fixes and additions. Look for that stream closer to the update’s launch.

So what is exactly in this second Title Update? Here are the top highlights, with even more to discuss soon. I’ll try to limit the number of exclamation points, but if you can’t tell the team is excited.

  • Solo players can pause the game!

  • New decorations for your base including rugs, new lamps, and furniture!

  • Change the difficulty of the game, including modes for large groups, solo players and story-focused players!

  • Reworked building and stability and added all new building blocks that fill in a lot of gaps!

  • More sound and VFX, especially in combat.

  • More quality of life and bug fixes than can I list, including fixing bad seeds for Orctown, Baranzinbar, axe fragments and muznakan; Dwarves won't starve while you watch the credits; better multiplayer connection stability; everyone can get achievements not just the host; and a lot more!

Ok who was I kidding? That was all the exclamation points.

Oh and one more big one. On the Epic Game Store we will release the Alpha Preview of our biggest feature update. SANDBOX MODE. It’s an early playable of a whole new way to retake Moria. Think of the game as you have it now as the Campaign. When creating a new world you can now choose to make it a Sandbox. This strips out the linear narrative and lets the procedural generation go wild. Only the Doors of Durin and Dimrill Gate are where you would expect it. Everything else is remixed, scrambled and placed in Khazad-dum’s various Levels and Deeps. There are new kinds of environments, a whole new, non-linear way of experiencing the mountain’s biomes, new weapons and armor recipes to discover and a renewed focus on the survival part of survival-crafting. And of course the deeper you delve, the harder it gets.

Hear more about this new mode and why it is an “alpha preview” along with the roadmap for getting it out on consoles in our upcoming Forge Chat in Discord.

New items to help make your base a home.
Some of the new weapons and armor.
A sample of one of the Elven Biomes in Sandbox Mode.
Dare you venture deeper in Sandbox Mode?
An example of what the difficulty options will look like. (final UI may differ)
Where you’ll be able to find the Alpha Preview of the Sandbox Mode on PC at release.

Finally we know there are a lot of questions about other major community requests. First, we will have more information on the Xbox version after this update is live. Unfortunately that means it will not make the projected timeline of Q1 2024. It's still coming, it's just going to take more time, we want it to be terrific and will share more details as soon as we can.

We also know features like crossplay, dedicated servers and other platforms are on people’s mind. We are still evaluating the best way to execute on these which means it wouldn't be right to promise them yet. But we are still working on the right way to do these things.

Ok, that’s it for now. Tune in on Discord for more and I can not wait until you get to play this update.

[Editors note: Don’t worry if you can’t make the live Forge Talk on Friday, we’ll be recording it and posting it on our YouTube channel the following week!]

4 commentaires

Joseph Pociask
Joseph Pociask
09 mars

This all feels like a great next step! I'm still hoping for something like a 'Lord of Moria' mode, wherein NPCs can be assigned to fill tasks as we direct the progress and lead the armies. If the Orcs can send patrols and have camps, it feels in the realm of the possible for dwarves to manage this too?


John B. Owens II
John B. Owens II
08 mars

I feel like I am 10 years old and its christmas day! :) So excited!


08 mars

No Steam. No Buy.

I'm sure the Epic Check was fat. Now to actually start selling the game.


08 mars

Steam release when?

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