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[Column] The Elder Scrolls Online: Making it Feel Like TES

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe Land of AZPosts: 16,619MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

Ever since the announcement of The Elder Scrolls Online, players have been clamoring to make sure their voices are heard by developers that they want TESO to perfectly capture that "Elder Scrolls" feel. We've got a few thoughts to share about how that's happening so be sure to check it out before leaving your ideas in the comments.

One of the main reasons Matt Firor and Paul Sage told us they’ve waited so long before showing off Elder Scrolls Online is that they wanted to make sure their game could show up on the scene and be known immediately as an Elder Scrolls game.  A lot of people might just think that turning Tamriel into an MMO is no small task.  Put some multiplayer architecture behind the Skyrim engine like a few mods have tried, and let it loose.  But that isn’t Zenimax Online’s goal.  Their goal is to bring the world of Tamriel into the MMORPG framework while still retaining specific facets that make games like Morrowind, Oblivion, and Skyrim such massive gaming hallmarks.  They want to make an MMORPG that fans of the genre will immediately grasp, but they also want to make an Elder Scrolls game that Bethesda fans will agree with and adopt as one with the series.  I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t want that job of playing mash-em-up.

Read more of Bill Murphy's The Elder Scrolls Online: Making it Feel Like TES.

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Comments

  • GwapoJoshGwapoJosh Auburn, INPosts: 991Member Uncommon
    Great write up!  But you forgot the most important thing to bring the TES fans pouring in..  First Person View Combat!!!

    "You are all going to poop yourselves." BillMurphy
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  • WhitebeardsWhitebeards TokyoPosts: 778Member
    First Person combat is confirmed for TESO along with over the shoulder view.
  • JakdstripperJakdstripper logan lake, BCPosts: 2,126Member Uncommon

    for me it's the incredible first person combat that has always drawn me to the TES games. nothing more immersive than a acurate and responsive first person combat view.

     

    it's what i loved most of DF, and the only reason i played MO for so long.....they reminded me so much of Oblivion.

     

    also horses that stay in the world when you dismount, instead of magically disappear to go into your inventory or back on your hotbar. i don't care if theyare not killable (they should if possible) they should still remain in the world pretty much where you dismounted. If you log off dismounted than your horse should be automatically be stabled at the closest stable, or the last stable you used.   

     
  • RocknissRockniss Youngstown, OHPosts: 1,034Member
    This actually at the core feels like an impossible task. I just don't see how I could ever become as immersed as I am right now in Skyrim.

    **** let's not hype this up to much to become something it can not become ****

    This is not going to have the TES feel, rather it will be an mmorpg with TES qualities, let's set this up for success not failure.
  • BadSpockBadSpock Somewhere, MIPosts: 7,974Member

    I agree with your list, except the werewolves/vampires bit - I could care less about that.

    Most important thing to me is that the combat and progression are good.

    I want to mash people and NPCs in the face with a Shield as I did love so much in Skyrim - so if the progression of the Block skill and general character progression + combat is as good as Skyrim, I'll be a happy camper.

     
  • WhitebeardsWhitebeards TokyoPosts: 778Member
    Originally posted by Jakdstripper

    for me it's the incredible first person combat that has always drawn me to the TES games. nothing more immersive than a acurate and responsive first person combat view.

     

    it's what i loved most of DF, and the only reason i played MO for so long.....they reminded me so much of Oblivion.

     

    also horses that stay in the world when you dismount, instead of magically disappear to go into your inventory or back on your hotbar. i don't care if theyare not killable (they should if possible) they should still remain in the world pretty much where you dismounted. If you log off dismounted than your horse should be automatically be stabled at the closest stable, or the last stable you used.   

     

    It depends upon the engine really and how well it can take the load.

    In Fallen Earth mounts stay in world but it also turned heavy populated areas into slide show.

  • ste2000ste2000 londonPosts: 4,705Member Uncommon

    Some good point there, particularly the Crafting that Zenimax seems to have completely overlooked.

     

  • BadSpockBadSpock Somewhere, MIPosts: 7,974Member
    Originally posted by ste2000

    Some good point there, particularly the Crafting that Zenimax seems to have completely overlooked.

     

     Posts like this make my blood boil.

    How can you justify saying this?

    No one knows exactly how the crafting is being implemented, only that during their play time all the previewers said that crafting mats drop and can be found everywhere on and in everything.

    Which points to the exact opposite of your pointless, baseless troll comment.

    I'm no ESO or Zenimax defender, but come on.... unless you have some body of evidence to support your statement I (nor anyone else) has yet seen?

  • SovrathSovrath Boston Area, MAPosts: 18,460Member Uncommon

    I'm afraid I'll have to disagree about the thievery. Oh sure, it would make it more "Elder Scrolls" for those people who played that way but short of instancing the silly process, what is it going to look, like when 32 people are all stealthing up to one npc?

    Or if they allow players to break into a house, what happens when 25 players find themselves in the same place? ARe they going to allow everyone to raid that chest by the bed making the entire thing a thievery vending machine or do they allow first come first serve and just replace the stuff every 24 hours. If that npc house gets stolen from every day is that npc house going to start "fighting back"?

    Just one of the issues that mmo's have when they try to incorporate single player mechanics.

    And same with vampires. is one npc gonig to be the blood bank for 50 vampire players?

  • BillMurphyBillMurphy Managing Editor Berea, OHPosts: 2,365MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon
    That's a good point Sovrath... so I suppose as long as it's in in SOME form, even just the Thieves Guild, I could be happy. 
  • achesomaachesoma Portland, ORPosts: 1,000Member Uncommon

    I agree with the list.  Especially the crafting.  I'm a firm believer that crafting should make players rich not poor.  The top gear should come from crafting while the best recipes come from dungeons.

    One thing I'd add to the list is open world exploration.  Not being able to travel to other faction zones is a real turn off for me.  One of my favorite end-game activities is world map clearing. 

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  • umcorianumcorian Boston, MAPosts: 466Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Sovrath

    I'm afraid I'll have to disagree about the thievery. Oh sure, it would make it more "Elder Scrolls" for those people who played that way but short of instancing the silly process, what is it going to look, like when 32 people are all stealthing up to one npc?

    Or if they allow players to break into a house, what happens when 25 players find themselves in the same place? ARe they going to allow everyone to raid that chest by the bed making the entire thing a thievery vending machine or do they allow first come first serve and just replace the stuff every 24 hours. If that npc house gets stolen from every day is that npc house going to start "fighting back"?

    Just one of the issues that mmo's have when they try to incorporate single player mechanics.

    And same with vampires. is one npc gonig to be the blood bank for 50 vampire players?

     

    Very good point.

    That will kill the feel of an ES game. Instead of being a legendary-style thief, you're like a rat trying to scurry for a piece of cheese before the other rats get there.

    Thievery HAS to potentially play a huge role in an ES game. How to do it without a hundred people robbing a town blind every 5 minutes is anyone's guess.

  • UNH0LYEV1LUNH0LYEV1L Summerville, SCPosts: 412Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Whitebeards
    First Person combat is confirmed for TESO along with over the shoulder view.

    Oh thank god that over the shoulder view will be available.  I absolutely hate the clunkyness and limited field of view that first person provided in all of the Elder Scroll Games.  Couldnt stand Darkfall for the reason that the over the shoulder view sucked.


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  • ShakyMoShakyMo BradfordPosts: 7,207Member
    I'm sure I saw somewhere that enchanting works the same as tes single player, soul gems, soul traps the lot, but they've changed alchemy as the gathering would be too much of a performance hit in a mmo. I assume smithing will be simmilar to skyrim, no reason that couldn't work in an mmo.

    I'm more concerned about the importance of crafting. I hope it is as important as it us in tes single player (and Indeed daoc & uo where firor and sage come from). But the game has instanced raiding, and that's never worked well with crafting, crafting always suffers as raid types assume they should have more shineys than everyone else.
  • ShakyMoShakyMo BradfordPosts: 7,207Member
    Darkfall uses first person with ranged and third person with melee doesnt it?
  • azzamasinazzamasin Butler, OHPosts: 3,058Member Uncommon

    Agree 100% with Bill on having access to "alot"™ of dungeons to explore.  It is the main feature I adore about TES games.  Getting lost in an almost endless open world is the best thing about the RPG's.  I dont particularly care for other features the single player games uses like First person Combat, the crafting, the lore or the storylines so any of those can be different if it makes the game better as a whole.

     

    What Elder Scrolls features do you hope make the game that haven’t already been touched on?  So far it would have to be player housing and endless open world freedom to explore which is meaningful.  Give me those things and I am a happy camper.

    Sandbox means open world, non-linear gaming PERIOD!

    Subscription Gaming, especially MMO gaming is a Cash grab bigger then the most P2W cash shop!

    Bring Back Exploration and lengthy progression times. RPG's have always been about the Journey not the destination!!!

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  • azzamasinazzamasin Butler, OHPosts: 3,058Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by UNH0LYEV1L
    Originally posted by Whitebeards
    First Person combat is confirmed for TESO along with over the shoulder view.

    Oh thank god that over the shoulder view will be available.  I absolutely hate the clunkyness and limited field of view that first person provided in all of the Elder Scroll Games.  Couldnt stand Darkfall for the reason that the over the shoulder view sucked.

    Over the shoulder is fine for out of combat, but in SKyrim once you go into combat stance the camera goes over the head.

     

    For me it would be a near deal breaker if the camera remained over the shoulder, its not as immersive and the camera rotating over the head once combat starts.

    Sandbox means open world, non-linear gaming PERIOD!

    Subscription Gaming, especially MMO gaming is a Cash grab bigger then the most P2W cash shop!

    Bring Back Exploration and lengthy progression times. RPG's have always been about the Journey not the destination!!!

    image

  • Mariner-80Mariner-80 Winchester, VAPosts: 347Member

    The thing that will make it feel "Elder Scrolls-like" to me is the question of whether I can play TESO 100% solo (if I so choose) and still feel llike there's a complete game there for me. The MMO aspects of the game are fine (and I'll probably participate in some of that content), but it's the single-player aspect of the original games that I am going to miss the most if it's no longer there. Most MMOs take the "sure you can level up by yourself, but the good stuff, the dungeons, is for player groups only" approach. I hope TESO doesn't follow the MMO "the best content is for groups only" herd.

     

    If ZeniMax provides a rich SP experience that's heavily enhanced and garnished by multiplayer content, I'll be happy, but if they attempt to go "halvesies" -- i.e., sewing a "half-MMO" to a "half-SP game" together like some kind of Frankenstein's monster -- I'll be disappointed and probably give the game a pass.

  • KalstarkKalstark fishkill, NYPosts: 63Member
    Originally posted by BadSpock
    Originally posted by ste2000

    Some good point there, particularly the Crafting that Zenimax seems to have completely overlooked.

     

     Posts like this make my blood boil.

    How can you justify saying this?

    No one knows exactly how the crafting is being implemented, only that during their play time all the previewers said that crafting mats drop and can be found everywhere on and in everything.

    Which points to the exact opposite of your pointless, baseless troll comment.

    I'm no ESO or Zenimax defender, but come on.... unless you have some body of evidence to support your statement I (nor anyone else) has yet seen?

    haha who needs proof or facts these days? its only "opinion" that matter

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  • GwapoJoshGwapoJosh Auburn, INPosts: 991Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Whitebeards
    First Person combat is confirmed for TESO along with over the shoulder view.

    Can you link that?  Last thing I read they said that they were going to try and add fpv like the other games (where you can see your arms and weapons).

    "You are all going to poop yourselves." BillMurphy
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  • ThomasN7ThomasN7 87.18.7.148 1, NJPosts: 6,690Member
    If they can get first person combat work like the single player games then this might make more people happy.
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  • SovrathSovrath Boston Area, MAPosts: 18,460Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by umcorian
    Originally posted by Sovrath

    I'm afraid I'll have to disagree about the thievery. Oh sure, it would make it more "Elder Scrolls" for those people who played that way but short of instancing the silly process, what is it going to look, like when 32 people are all stealthing up to one npc?

    Or if they allow players to break into a house, what happens when 25 players find themselves in the same place? ARe they going to allow everyone to raid that chest by the bed making the entire thing a thievery vending machine or do they allow first come first serve and just replace the stuff every 24 hours. If that npc house gets stolen from every day is that npc house going to start "fighting back"?

    Just one of the issues that mmo's have when they try to incorporate single player mechanics.

    And same with vampires. is one npc gonig to be the blood bank for 50 vampire players?

     

    Very good point.

    That will kill the feel of an ES game. Instead of being a legendary-style thief, you're like a rat trying to scurry for a piece of cheese before the other rats get there.

    Thievery HAS to potentially play a huge role in an ES game. How to do it without a hundred people robbing a town blind every 5 minutes is anyone's guess.

    The only way that I can think of that would work would be to make it part of a series of instanced quests. Of course that mitigates the whole "open world" idea and you have 500 players all talking about how they robbed "Prince Lyle" but I suppose that isn't any different from everyone running up to x npc and collecting the quests they offer.

  • ShakyMoShakyMo BradfordPosts: 7,207Member
    Thieving could work like the sabotage missions in tsw.
  • ElikalElikal ValhallaPosts: 7,906Member Uncommon
    Good list, I would name "WORLD SIZE" as my number one, however. No really, I think any Elder Scrolls game was huge, and making at least most parts of Tamriel at launch and the whole piece later means, TESO has to be frigging huge. It simply has to be, to conjure up the Elder Scrolls feeling for me. Something like 5-10 times WOW at launch. :)

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  • EntinerintEntinerint brooklyn, NYPosts: 843Member Uncommon

    Combat, interactivity and Freedom are the things that set TES apart from its contemporaries and make it unique and highly successful.  These things mentioned in the list are mostly just fluff.

     

    The race-locked factions (where you can't explore other faction's lands) and static non-real-time combat that ESO currently has makes it VERY far from n actual TES game.

     

    They are trying to improve it but if the last gameplay video is any indication they have a LOT of work to do.  Also, friendly fire needs to be ON for RT combat to have any meaning.  Otherwise it's just a spamfest.  Therefore FFA PvP is necessary (just like how you can attack anyone in TES games you should be able to attack anyone in ESO - with just consequences to keep it from becoming a gank-fest).

     
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