Yesterday Turbine released the first build of the Update 15 Beta. As always, I headed to the test server to explore the landscape. This time though I found something I did not expect.
Aside from Pelargir, the landscape seems extremely similar to Western Gondor which is a big disappointment. It is Beta so things could change but everything appears to be in a near-complete state based on the level of detail in the zones. This similarity is most apparent in the landscape itself which looks nearly identical to the last part of Gondor.
The final-looking maps indicate that this is basically how the landscape will appear in the final version. While the landscape itself is not a disappointment and looks really good, the fact that it is extremely similar to previous areas is a big disappointment as believable diversity of landscape has been a strength of LOTRO the last several years. Sadly this strength seems to be absent from this build of the Beta.