Come April 4th, the world of the Elder Scrolls will finally meet online game in it’s first MMO iteration. However, in previous months the game has had several outings in the form of closed Beta’s and more recently a semi-open Beta. Though they were all under NDA, several unflattering accounts and videos have nonetheless been circulating and the game has managed to garner a somewhat negative reputation.
Now, slight disclaimer here, I’ve played the Beta’s and I have loved every one. To me, the Elder Scrolls Beta’s have given me exactly what I’ve always wanted from and Elder Scrolls game. The world of the Elder Scrolls, the gameplay, the lore, but with a way to play it with friends. Keep in mind, I’m no MMO buff, but I am an Elder Scrolls fan. However, my enthusiasm for the game seems to put me in the minority if YouTube and internet forums are to be believed.
A wide range of complaints have been levied at the game, ranging from problems with the lore to the game being too much like a standard MMO or too little like a standard MMO. After several Beta tests, stress tests and much user feedback, Zenimax has decided to act on some of the complaints. They have detailed the changes planned in a post on their blog. Here’s a quick summary of the changes:
- The Coldharbour tutorial will be “streamlined”.
- After completing the tutorial, players will be placed in the first major city of their respective alliance.
- The level curve in the cities will be adjusted for beginner players.
- The initial starter islands will still be available to visit, with adjustments to levels.
- Players will be able to explore more of Tamriel much faster.
- Animation and audio adjustments to combat in order to make it more substantial.
- Players no collide with NPC’s, meaning you can’t just walk through them.
- They have used beta testing to load balance servers properly, with large data centers in NA and EU.
- They are also adding overflow servers in order to be prepared for potentially large launch.
- Anything you do on overflow server will move to production serves once things settle down and you can get back on them.
- Overflow servers won’t allow PvP and Friends/Guild Lists, but you can still party up.
- Bug causing lag in Cyrodiil has been fixed.
- They are also already working on post-game launch content, the first of which is an adventure zone call Craglorn. It is group based end-game PvE.
They also speak of several other changes on the back end they don’t list. It is unknown how well these changes will truly address the complaints so far, but the game launch is not far off. The game will retail for $59.99 and will also require a $14.99 monthly subscription with the first month free.