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[Preview] Elder Scrolls Online: PAX East 2013 Impressions

BillMurphyBillMurphy Managing EditorBerea, OHPosts: 2,362MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

We took The Elder Scrolls Online for a spin during this year's PAX East event and today we're offering our impressions.

The first thing I noticed about how I was playing ESO was that I was trying to play it like it was any other MMO. My sort of preconceptions about the game, that it couldn’t possibly play like an actual Elder Scrolls game, had me trying to just go through the typical MMO motions. However, what I soon began to realize is that ESO actually does play like an Elder Scrolls game. Instead of trying to play the game like MMO X, it was actually best to just play ESO like I was playing Skyrim or Oblivion. You have to sort of switch mindsets a bit, and once you do that it all gels together quite well.

Read more of Michael Bitton's The Elder Scrolls Online: PAX East 2013 Impressions.

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Comments

  • DaemonweaverDaemonweaver MostaPosts: 100Member Uncommon
    I have seen a couple of reviews from PAX that describe the combat as a bit floaty and weightless. Certainly the clips that were shown along with 1 report (clips were not from PAX but released stuff we have all seen before) show the combat to be a bit dull with very little reaction to blows from mobs or player toons. I will reserve judgment till I get to try it out but I hope it is better than it looks and sounds so far. I am only talking about actual combat not skill progression etc as that sounds really cool. 
  • modusmodus Unknown, ONPosts: 55Member Uncommon
    I am optimistic, but would not be suprised in the slightest if this game turned out to be another stinker.
  • DoogiehowserDoogiehowser ParisPosts: 1,873Member
    Originally posted by modus
    I am optimistic, but would not be suprised in the slightest if this game turned out to be another stinker.

    IP's like these no matter how average turn out to be will have legions of fans playing it regardless. However, from whatever i have seen and read it won't be a stinker..well except for those who wanted a sandbox ES game. Those people can be ignored ;)

    "The problem is that the hardcore folks always want the same thing: 'We want exactly what you gave us before, but it has to be completely different.'
    -Jesse Schell

    "Online gamers are the most ludicrously entitled beings since Caligula made his horse a senator, and at least the horse never said anything stupid."
    -Luke McKinney

    image

  • PanzerbasePanzerbase Chicago, ILPosts: 423Member
    And I'm hearing direct opposites on many of these points, that it is not living up to the name, that the character creation is asinine and needless with current implimation, and the closed world is telling of the departure from it's Skrim roots. My estimate is one of too much hype and too one too many biased opinions in the favor of the game. I guess money is the universal language of the world, well money under the table. 
  • BillMurphyBillMurphy Managing Editor Berea, OHPosts: 2,362MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon
    Originally posted by Panzerbase
    And I'm hearing direct opposites on many of these points, that it is not living up to the name, that the character creation is asinine and needless with current implimation, and the closed world is telling of the departure from it's Skrim roots. My estimate is one of too much hype and too one too many biased opinions in the favor of the game. I guess money is the universal language of the world, well money under the table. 

    OR, Mike liked the game.

    /rolleyes

  • jtcgsjtcgs New Port Richey, ILPosts: 1,777Member

    Umm, the entire article is more of a "let me try to convience people this is like TES" instead of "This is what I saw in the game".

    Not a good sign seeing as how you just actually played the game...HOW is it like TES? What did you actually SEE? o.O is Zenimax feeling so much heat by the parent company because of the backlash that they are paying for articles to as fluff pieces to try to change the games perceptions?

    Tell us HOW and WHY its actually like TES if you expect that...worse yet, why do it on THIS site where there are a majority of DaoC fans that actually WANT IT to be non-TES.

    “I hope we shall crush...in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country." ~Thomes Jefferson

  • DoogiehowserDoogiehowser ParisPosts: 1,873Member
    Originally posted by BillMurphy
    Originally posted by Panzerbase
    And I'm hearing direct opposites on many of these points, that it is not living up to the name, that the character creation is asinine and needless with current implimation, and the closed world is telling of the departure from it's Skrim roots. My estimate is one of too much hype and too one too many biased opinions in the favor of the game. I guess money is the universal language of the world, well money under the table. 

    OR, Mike liked the game.

    /rolleyes

    Well...your previews, reviews and columns will never be complete without someone accusing you guys for taking money 'under the table' for every MMO you are excited about. lol

    "The problem is that the hardcore folks always want the same thing: 'We want exactly what you gave us before, but it has to be completely different.'
    -Jesse Schell

    "Online gamers are the most ludicrously entitled beings since Caligula made his horse a senator, and at least the horse never said anything stupid."
    -Luke McKinney

    image

  • BattlerockBattlerock Youngstown, OHPosts: 1,393Member
    I wish we could get back to real talk instead of just constantly trying to sell up and coming games. So you got 2 hours of play time in. You liked it. It felt more single player rpg es than an mmo. Its not as immersive as skyrim. In 2013 all games that are using a poplar ip are fast cash grabs until 6-9 months after launch. At that point is the game picking up momentum or washing out.
  • CthulhuPuffsCthulhuPuffs Henderson, NVPosts: 363Member Common
    Originally posted by Doogiehowser
    Originally posted by BillMurphy
    Originally posted by Panzerbase
    And I'm hearing direct opposites on many of these points, that it is not living up to the name, that the character creation is asinine and needless with current implimation, and the closed world is telling of the departure from it's Skrim roots. My estimate is one of too much hype and too one too many biased opinions in the favor of the game. I guess money is the universal language of the world, well money under the table. 

    OR, Mike liked the game.

    /rolleyes

    Well...your previews, reviews and columns will never be complete without someone accusing you guys for taking money 'under the table' for every MMO you are excited about. lol

    Thats because they get excited for EVERY MMO. I dont think I have ever once seen a Columnist from this site come back with a less than stellar review(preview) about every AAA MMO that has come down the pipe.

    Bringer of Eternal Darkness and Despair, but also a Nutritious way to start your Morning.

    Games Played: Too Many

  • MikeBMikeB MMORPG.com Community Manager Queens, NYPosts: 5,720Administrator Uncommon
    Originally posted by jtcgs

    Umm, the entire article is more of a "let me try to convience people this is like TES" instead of "This is what I saw in the game".

    Not a good sign seeing as how you just actually played the game...HOW is it like TES? What did you actually SEE? o.O is Zenimax feeling so much heat by the parent company because of the backlash that they are paying for articles to as fluff pieces to try to change the games perceptions?

    Tell us HOW and WHY its actually like TES if you expect that...worse yet, why do it on THIS site where there are a majority of DaoC fans that actually WANT IT to be non-TES.

    I saw all the same stuff we covered extensively last week, so I didn't want to rehash it. It was the same build. Going into this I had one real goal in mind: find out if TESO actually felt Elder Scrolls. To me, it doesn't matter what the game is like if they boned this up. They would be missing the point. People are excited because they want to play Elder Scrolls...online! If it was just a standard MMO with an ES skin it would be a bust and so that's really what I wanted to find out.

     

    You can run around and pretty much do what you want. The character creation is just as deep (if not deeper) than the singleplayer titles. The customization is too (skills, weapons and such). And the combat really embodies the spirit of Elder Scrolls combat. However, the whole package doesn't feel as good as say, Skyrim, but as I noted in the article, that's OK. There's no way it could have been.

     

    No one is paying me, or us, for anything. Feel free to discuss the article, but let's leave the conspiracy theories at the door. I don't know if ESO will pan out to be an awesome game in the end -- but I do feel that they're doing an admirable job on geting the 'Elder Scrolls feel' right based on what I played at PAX, and that really frees up the rest of the stuff to even matter for me.  That's what the purpose of this article was. We've got tons of straight information coverage for you to pore over and it's all from the build shown on the floor.

    Michael "MikeB" Bitton
    Community Manager
    Twitter: @eMikeB

  • DauzqulDauzqul Detroit, MIPosts: 1,405Member Uncommon

    ...and they release the typical screenshot: a warrior standing in front of some mysterious object - with an endless world to explore in the background. These types of screenshots always scream exploration and adventure. However, reality always proves that these deceptive backgrounds always end up being either invisible walls or impassable mountains or waters.

     

    I am so sick of being limited to "the path".

     

    I haven't played TESO, but I'm almost certain that this is going to be another SWTOR.

     
  • BadSpockBadSpock Somewhere, MIPosts: 7,974Member

    I'm assuming there was/is an embargo on being able to show us gameplay videos?

  • RyowulfRyowulf Greensburg, PAPosts: 668Member

    The game might be great, but I remember the pax talk about SWToR too.  I'll believe it when I play it.  

    One thing that bugs me and the preview makes worse is your limited race choice.  I mean if you are playing the game solo then you can pick and play the race you like the best.

    But if you are going to play with friends or be in a guild (this is an mmo afterall), you are very likely going to have to pick your 2nd or 3rd  or even a race you don't much care for.  Having racial skill lines and stuff just makes your choice all the more important.  The min/max types will pick the op races while other will go for looks and lore.  Again not a big deal if you weren't locked into a faction, but as you are it is.

    I can't see how putting road blocks into the start of the game is going to help it sell more boxes or keep people around longer.

  • DoogiehowserDoogiehowser ParisPosts: 1,873Member
    Originally posted by CthulhuPuffs
    Originally posted by Doogiehowser
    Originally posted by BillMurphy
    Originally posted by Panzerbase
    And I'm hearing direct opposites on many of these points, that it is not living up to the name, that the character creation is asinine and needless with current implimation, and the closed world is telling of the departure from it's Skrim roots. My estimate is one of too much hype and too one too many biased opinions in the favor of the game. I guess money is the universal language of the world, well money under the table. 

    OR, Mike liked the game.

    /rolleyes

    Well...your previews, reviews and columns will never be complete without someone accusing you guys for taking money 'under the table' for every MMO you are excited about. lol

    Thats because they get excited for EVERY MMO. I dont think I have ever once seen a Columnist from this site come back with a less than stellar review(preview) about every AAA MMO that has come down the pipe.

    MMORPG.COM is not just one entity. There are many people who work there who are gamers just like you and i. And i do'nt see what is wrong with getting excited about every new MMO, i am the same way. Intital excitement is very natural.

    But  this  'they are being paid to be exicted' is getting a bit old.

    "The problem is that the hardcore folks always want the same thing: 'We want exactly what you gave us before, but it has to be completely different.'
    -Jesse Schell

    "Online gamers are the most ludicrously entitled beings since Caligula made his horse a senator, and at least the horse never said anything stupid."
    -Luke McKinney

    image

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

    However, reality always proves that these deceptive backgrounds always end up being either invisible walls or impassable mountains or waters.

    I am so sick of being limited to "the path".

     

    This. The thing I really love/loved about Skyrim/Oblivion is that if I saw something in the distance, I knew I could get there and see what it really was.

    In Skyrim, even every mountain peak held secrets to find.

    If ESO has little boxed-in GW2 style zones or WoW-style impassable terrain it will fail to capture that Elder Scrolls feeling for me, and likely countless others.

  • TalulaRoseTalulaRose Long Island, NYPosts: 480Member Uncommon
    The typical negativity that infests MMORPG like a plague has already begun.
  • CoolitCoolit FalkirkPosts: 468Member Uncommon

    No question this is my favourite IP of all time and I just hope they don’t mess this up like Bioware did with SWTOR. I have to be honest I'm not looking for the next big thing here I just want Zenimax to produce a solid game that is true to the ES lore (which is amazing) and I'll be more than happy. It seems to be shaping up pretty well though from what you’ve said :)

  • MikeBMikeB MMORPG.com Community Manager Queens, NYPosts: 5,720Administrator Uncommon
    Originally posted by BadSpock

    I'm assuming there was/is an embargo on being able to show us gameplay videos?

     

    I was solo. No gameplay vids, sorry!

    Michael "MikeB" Bitton
    Community Manager
    Twitter: @eMikeB

  • NC-JohnNC-John burlington, WIPosts: 113Member

    By nature I try to avoid the type of articles, no offense to staff at MMORPG.com.. love the site always fun to hear different view points from the staff. I just can't see anything that excites me about this. I'm approcahing this not as a fan of TES but just a person who loves MMO's in general. I think the only true way for this game to get an honest review, is to let it release and let players who have been at this MMO hobby share an unbiased view point without much passion for or against. also only a true hands by each person can really tell the tale of how this will be.

    Always a problem with articles from anyone really, allot gets past the common sense filters if people are a fan or have been allowed special access as a reporter. sometimes just letting press in on a game before beta even causes this kind of skewed type of viewpoint, no offense again to the staff here, love you guys for all the hard work and allowing us access to new games.

    Well let it release, once countless players report back I will hold my cash close to my wallet on this puppy until 5 months in after release.

    "Not even a cray super computer can make this game run well. Thats what happens when you code an MMO in pascal. " - miglor

  • uller30uller30 MILWAUKEE, WIPosts: 114Member
    I'm glad you posted a objective article for he game. I don want to see they are paying us x amount to day how sweet this game is or don't buy it it's not ES. I want to hear I did not follow a quest but had fun it's not mmo X of the flavor or a knock off of some tittle. What I want are new games with a new feel not a rehash of old stuff reskinned for that year. I bought SWTOR for Star Wars and mmos and beliving in Bioware mistake I won't go back to again. I will wait to betas it looks good I also want to know how they plan to allow for older rigs to play and what's their end game ideas.
  • ThomasN7ThomasN7 87.18.7.148 1, NJPosts: 6,690Member
    Even the mmos that have failed miserably have still got good first impressions. All this is deja-vu in such a bad way for mmos. Sounds really nothing exciting because it sounds like the same mmo we have had for over 10 years but with a slight twist to it. We'll see I guess but won't be suprised if it fails miserably.
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  • Balkin31Balkin31 Citrus Heights, CAPosts: 224Member Uncommon

    Honestly this is what it comes down to "Does it play like or close to like the single player games" 

     

    We know some MMO traits will be required to make the game capable of existing in a multiplayer enviroment so I would completely expect to see some of this. But the meat of the game must play and feel like a Skyrim or Oblivion game for fans of the single player titles to get in and ultimately stay with this game!

     

    So far to me it sounds as if this is true but I will only know for myself once I have played it.

     

    So I am remaining cautiously optimistic.

  • buegurbuegur Belle Fourche, SDPosts: 458Member
    I can see that the recent releases of games not living up to expectations really has made a lot of peeps pessimistic.  From what I have seen these developers have listened to our complaints and made changes to make the game better.  Will it be Skyrim or morrowind, of course not, and it shouldn't be an exact copy either.  This is a MMO in a different time period where the factions are at war, so comparing that period to the ones played by the ealier renditions is just plain silly.  Why on earth would I play Skyrim if it played exactly the same as Morrowind?  I would suggest keeping an open mind and see what they come up with and see if it has the ESO spirit along with new game play. 
  • jtcgsjtcgs New Port Richey, ILPosts: 1,777Member
    Originally posted by MikeB

    I saw all the same stuff we covered extensively last week, so I didn't want to rehash it. It was the same build. Going into this I had one real goal in mind: find out if TESO actually felt Elder Scrolls. To me, it doesn't matter what the game is like if they boned this up. They would be missing the point. People are excited because they want to play Elder Scrolls...online! If it was just a standard MMO with an ES skin it would be a bust and so that's really what I wanted to find out.

     

    You can run around and pretty much do what you want. The character creation is just as deep (if not deeper) than the singleplayer titles. The customization is too (skills, weapons and such). And the combat really embodies the spirit of Elder Scrolls combat. However, the whole package doesn't feel as good as say, Skyrim, but as I noted in the article, that's OK. There's no way it could have been.

     

    No one is paying me, or us, for anything. Feel free to discuss the article, but let's leave the conspiracy theories at the door. I don't know if ESO will pan out to be an awesome game in the end -- but I do feel that they're doing an admirable job on geting the 'Elder Scrolls feel' right based on what I played at PAX, and that really frees up the rest of the stuff to even matter for me.  That's what the purpose of this article was. We've got tons of straight information coverage for you to pore over and it's all from the build shown on the floor.

     If that is the case, then this game cant be like TES.

    Both you and Zenimax havent actually delt with the REASONS legions of TES fans are in an uproar. Adding 1st person does not add to it being like TES...how many other MMOs have that? a ton...they are not like TES.

    The REASONS need to be addressed, just "saying" it feels like it, does nothing to address the issues. You are in a postion to bring these things to them, to REPRESENT the community.

    The issues being spoken about on virtually every single TES website, from the offical site, the fan sites and the modding sites is simple.

    Race/faction locks. closed faction lands (no, allowing us to go there at 50 to play in an instanced version is not opening them). PvP in an invisible closed off neverland with no threat to homelands. funneled level content all forcing everyone to the same place. Pretty elves. Lore changed to fit DaoC style gameplay...and now, limited crafting where you can only master 2 or be bad at it all...as well as the possibilty that skill points are limited allowing for forced class structuring via FotM for best outcomes(a question left unasked when reporting on the topic).

    None of these things are TES, they (most) are DaoC design structures that did not need to be used as there are OPEN WORLD MMOs with OPEN RACE CHOICES and OPEN FACTION CHIOCES even with the ability to switch after character creation as well as MMOS that allow full training in ALL crafting skills to the max, and yes, we have had an MMO with NO LEVELS as well and now we have an MMO that scales the player to the content. We all know there sure are MMOs out there that doesnt place PvP in some safe zone while trying to tell us the WORLD is at WAR but allow us to bring that war to our enemies doorsteps (No I dont mean FFA PvP).

    By using designs we know are out there that FIT TES  there would be no need for changes to the lore nor for some reason getting rid of alien looking elves which I still cannot figure out for the life of me.

    Its been said before, it will be said again, if this game WAS LIKE TES that would mean if it had DIFFERENT skins and npc/places names people would say the game is a ripoff of TES...which is NOT the case because its a ripoff of DaoC and is not reminiscent of TES.

    Personally, I would LOVE for the game to be like TES. I am not against it just to be against it...but if this is DaoC in a TES package, I am going to be pissed because I am a massive TES fan that KNOWS TES can be made into an MMO and still be what TES is. There is NO NEED to make such massive sacrifices that vastly limits gameplay. So tell me, HOW is this game so much like TES with what has been released the last few weeks that takes away the communities ACTUAL ISSUES with the game?

    “I hope we shall crush...in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country." ~Thomes Jefferson

  • DavisFlightDavisFlight Talahasee, FLPosts: 2,556Member
    so it fee,s likees necause of the combat?  you know, the worst part of the es seies??? great, that combined with all th e instancing and phasing means itll be q bad mmo and a bad es game.
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