Rise of Isengard – what will I get?

I preordered Rise of Isengard, LotRO’s next expansion, as soon as it became available. However, I still don’t know what I’ll get.

Three features are listed:
1) 3 new zones
Dunland, Gap of Rohan and Isengard. With those, we’ll get lots of new quests. Storywise and questwise, I will get something new and hopefully, it’ll be fun. I really like Enedwaith but greatly dislike Mirkwood. So hopefully, at least one of those new zones will be more like Enedwaith.

2) 10 new levels
I really enjoy levelling in MMOs. I love alts. In LotRO, however, this seems to be different. I like the game but I don’t enjoy the combat system as much as I do in other MMOs. It just seems slow compared to WoW or Rift. Still, I don’t mind those extra ten levels for my main character.

(3) A new 24 player raid)
A one-boss-raid. – I don’t get why that’s listed as a feature for the expansion. It was supposed to be added for LotRO’s 4th anniversary but didn’t make it into the game in time.
Massively mentions this here: What is coming, however, is a long-awaited raid against a giant dragon. The raid was scheduled for a previous update but had to be delayed for further development and testing.

So, we basically get 10 new levels and 3 new zones to quest in and, of course, a few new skills and changes to the classes. They will also reduce the different stats on the items to make the system easier.

Call me spoiled but… is that really everything? Why no new features? Something fresh and new to keep us playing the game instead of “more of the same”? A new hobby/profession? Housing overhaul (I do not want to believe that they were serious when they introduced this housing design)? Anything else?

We’re 2 months away from the expansion and only know about those few things. I’ve been following the official forums but there’s no news about anything else. There are optimistic players who are sure that there’ll be tons more. And pessimistic players who say that there won’t be anything else. I’m in between. So far, I can’t and don’t want to believe that this is really everything there is. On the other hand, if there was that much more coming and new features etc., then Turbine would’ve used all this stuff to promote their expansion.

If only I knew what the beta testers can see… *insert long dramatic sigh* Maybe they read the players’ fears and are laughing because they’ve already seen the nice amount of stuff coming with the expansion that Turbine is keeping from its playerbase to surprise them (or because they’re not sure it will be done in time).

GamesCom is coming soon (less than a month now) and I hope we’ll see something more then.