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Turbine promises yearly LOTRO expansions

Jeffrey Steefel, executive producer at US developer Turbine, has said that the company intends to deliver yearly expansion packs for the growing MMO Lord of the Rings Online.

Jeffrey Steefel, executive producer at US developer Turbine, has said that the company intends to deliver yearly expansion packs for the growing MMO Lord of the Rings Online.

The ambitious plan was announced during Codemasters' Connect 2008 event, in which Steefel unveiled the first true expansion to the game, The Mines of Moria, due for release this autumn.

"Our focus is to be consistent with what players have already seen us do with the game — continually update content with a lot of new, rich, deep and meaningful content on a regular basis — and that's something we are going to continue to do," said a confident Steefel.

"We're going to have an expansion to the product on an annual basis. So we are going to be keeping up the pace of this game, this game will be evolving, growing and expanding constantly."

Already a success in Europe via Codemasters, and in the US with Midway, Turbine is targeting Russia, China and Korea next.

"The franchise is very successful in North America and thanks to Codemasters [and all of the consumers] has been unbelievably successful in Europe. The franchise is growing everywhere and now we're going to be growing it around the world. We have really big launches in Asia this year," said Steefel.

"We're only just getting started on the franchise, it's not even been a year — but it's going to get bigger and better," he added.

Rival MMO developer Blizzard, responsible for the 10 million-subscriber title World of Warcraft, also previously indicated that it intended to release an expansion pack every year.

The Burning Crusade was launched in January last year, and while the second expansion, Wrath of the Lich King is due this year, no firm release date has yet been announced.

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