Thanks to Ethic for bringing this to my attention.
In a LOTRO dev chat hosted at Warcry, the follow exchange happened:
WarCry: Meeko: Any chance that some of the epic instances in volumn 1 will be eased as not so many people are around to group with who are interested in doing them… or a way to hire npc’s to help complete them in future?
Orion: Funny you should ask this. Book 8 will see the first change along these lines. Chapter 11, Orthongroth is already set this way. Moving forward – post Book 8 – we are taking a different approach. My recent work has been focusing on providing both solo and group version of the Epic instances to allow players to choose the way that they want to complete the overall epic story.
Orion is Allan Maki, who I find variously attributed as a Content Designer and a Community Manager for Turbine.
I’m pretty excited about this. I’ll admit at this point I play LOTRO as a single-player game, just to get lost in Tolkien’s world when the mood strikes me (the beauty of a Lifetime Membership). I’d love to do the Epic Instances alone, where I could take my time and enjoy everything that’s happening instead of skipping through in-game cut scenes and quest verbiage so as to keep up with whatever manic group of power-levelers I happened to have PUGged with.
Bring it on, Turbine! Can’t wait for more Epic Instance to offer a solo version!