ESO Report: A Collection of Complaints

Having a long weekend off over the Easter break with no family engagements has been rather great. Usually I’m stuck creating the large spread for the family which involves a lot of prep plus cleaning. This year the house remained a pig-sty and I was able to get a heeeeeeeeap of time in ESO that I spent exploring, completing quests and a fare bit of crafting.

I’ve made it up to Level 38 now, yeh, only that far. Surprisingly when you’re just faffing about rather than attached to the grind it all goes much slower. I could race onwards if I wanted to but I’m still content enough to go at my own pace although that feeling is beginning to wane just a little. I don’t think you are really meant to play as much as I have been lately. Many MANY hours a day. I mucked up a ligament in my foot so I did have an excuse to just lie back for a couple of days, doctors orders, but even then I don’t think it was a great idea.

Is this the real life?

Is this the real life?

Similar Stories

When you play for so long the stories you read, hear and experience just all start melding together into one great big eso soup, and it mostly just tastes bland after a while. Everything starts feeling the same and you can’t really distinguish between those brilliant bits where the story is particularly emotional or an interesting choice and just the usual questing fare.

The issue is that ESO seems to love retelling the same sort of story over and over and while some of it is interesting it does feel very familiar. A wealth of problems with the tree hugging Elves: either people annoying them, the land rebelling against them or some sort of spiritual voodoo Another graveyard full of spirits or undead rising up, more Worm cult nonsense and being evil for the sake of it. Bandits being bandits because… I don’t know why. Oh and don’t forget a sprinkling of daedric meddling.

The next tree hugger ceremony I am seriously just going to murder everyone

The next tree hugger ceremony I am seriously just going to murder everyone

The stories themselves are well done with a lot of background dialogue and information as well as reasoning behind the problem but you just feel like they should move away from the standard more often. I am surprised at just how dark some of the stories are, they really have earned that M rating of theirs. a wealth of horrible events; torture and sacrifice, the consequence of war. Clan warfare and the massacre of entire towns. You have hunger and the skooma addicted and many other rather adult themes. This aspect of light and dark, and all manner of morality in between makes the world and experiences within feel that much more realistic within the context. It makes these stories, even if rather rote fit in as you can see the effects of actions from the past and into the future.

Just a flesh wound

Just a flesh wound

Also, Why the hell does everyone in Tamriel want to sacrifice themselves.

Dungeon Delving

I’ve taken the time to do a lot more dungeons now and it seems there are a lot more to do the further you get up with varying level ranges depending on the area it’s in. Most have been really enjoyable with great environment design and mob mechanics.The combat is fun and a little more controllable now that everyone’s roles are more defined during these structured dungeons. It still seems very flexible and I’m seeing a wide range of different builds. The combat is still more chaotic than a usual dungeon too but far more manageable.

I’m even enjoying my tanking role here more and more, far more so the using it while levelling as I have a good range of skills to take on situations. I’m actively watching animations for when to block or move and it just feels very active. Not just some immovable object staring at a giant monster crotch. Mechanics have been fine too, if a little bland at times with only involving one or two key mechanics.

The part I’m disappointed with though is just how much they seem to prioritize aoe damage, and I’m seeing this a lot more in the open world too. They just through larger packs of normal mobs at you with little diversity around this. Mostly, as a DK at the front I just throw down a few talons to hold them in place and watch the fire rain down to smite all these enemies. Rinse repeat.

Fire, the solution to all your ESO problems

Fire, the solution to all your ESO problems

I’d like to see more interesting mechanics from this trash rather than standard attacks. I’d like to see more of a mix, smaller but tougher packs here and there. I want to see trash packs that don’t die in a couple of seconds. Mostly I just want to see group members have to switch into different builds rather than aoe mashing for everything. Maybe this will happen further on.

Balancing and Bugs

Now that I’ve gotten further up in the levelling process I’m seeing and experiencing a lot less polish in the quests, mechanics and in the world. I seem to have at least a few quests each day that I’m unable to complete mostly because the enemy to kill won’t spawn. Of course this happens after spending 15 minutes doing the lead up quests so your left waiting around for several minutes or more wondering if it will or won’t come out. If they do work expect at least a half a dozen oddly named bots standing over a dozen corpses waiting for the next spawn… it’s ridiculous.

All right, who stuffed up the captains invitation

All right, who stuffed up the captains invitation

I’ve spent a lot of time falling as well, through the world to the depths of nothingness. I counted 5 times on my Saturday play alone which firsts requires a relog from the blank blue screen. then a /stuck from the freefall I load into. I’ve been stuck in a lot of loading screens lately as well that require a relog, only to probably get stuck in the same one again if I’m trying a particular instance. I’ve also been experiencing a lot more of this weird bug where the game seems to log me as offline, lets me still chat and interact but unable to teleport or enter any other doors or instances.

So long cruel world

So long cruel world

The other part I’ve noticed is just a lot less polish in the questing. Missing environment pieces. weird or missing animations. Disjointed dialogue that even seems to flip between 2 or more voice actors for the one character. I believe that all this will be sorted out eventually but I have to say the level of polish in the content is becoming a bit of a concern. I understand it’s just another MMO that seems to have been rushed out a little early, and there is a lot of content here, more so than most new mmo’s but still.

Now this might sound like I’m already over the game. A mix of rather cranky critiques on some of the more important parts of the game but I’m still enjoying the game quite a lot. The pacing has been excellent, I’m delving it crafting a lot more again and still exploring the entirety of a map as well as every nook and cranny, and I’ve been engaging in a good mix of content styles and enjoying each type immensely. I’m just at that stage where I’m starting to think more about the mechanics of the game, it’s functioning and the various parts I like and dislike but so far, I’m still very much in the positive.

#ESO #Issues

7 thoughts on “ESO Report: A Collection of Complaints

  1. As an outside observer I’m very interested in seeing how people playing TESO feel about it and how those feelings change and develop as the first impact of “!New GAME!” begins to wear off. I am completely not surprised at all to hear that content in the mid-high level range is shaky and bugged. In my experience, if a new MMO is supremely polished in the starting areas the later areas will be less so, but if, as I believe was the case with TESO, the starting areas have a significant number of bugs, chances are the later areas will be barely finished at all. The classic example of this was DAOC, which launched with no content at all above about level 30 in a 50 level game, the devs rushing frenziedly to build it before the players could level up and see there was nothing behind the curtain.

    This is the sort of thing that a F2P or B2P MMO can ride out, to an extent, GW2 was buggy as hell in the mid and higher tiers for a good while after launch but the ever-open door meant people could wander off to other games and then come back to see if it had been fixed without nay appreciable effort on their part. Resubbing just to see if the game is more playable than it was six weeks ago is an entirely different emotional deal.

    Speaking of GW2, I took the trouble to page back through your blog and look at what you were saying about that game three or four weeks after launch. While there were some quality-of-life issues mentioned, the overall tone was hugely positive. Of course, TESO could do the opposite of what GW2 did for you and many others – stick to its design brief, fix the bugs, polish up, improve and grow. Going to be interesting, as it always is with subscription MMOs, to watch what happens when the free 30days finish, and the next couple of renewals after that.

    • I’m interested myslef in seeing how it works out for people. How the content goes for me and others later on, the breadth of updates and how the subscription works out. It is an interesting mmo case study. Personal, I don’t think the later areas are more bugged then the early ones, it’s the same but there updates to fix these bugs are working from the beginning up. With my burst of play I think I caught up to the bugged stuff again.

      I just looked back as well haha. Funny how I can just see that slide into negativity. I’m also rather shocked about updates to content and quality of life that was apparently coming soon was sometimes over a year late. Many of those things gw2 still doesn’t have like saving builds. No wonder I got jaded, there is only so much you can lead people on, especially to the pvp before they snap.
      I don’t know about eso yet. It has problems but I don’t see the same sort of broken expectations happening. Mainly because I don’t have that many as yet but also because Zenimax really haven’t claimed to give the world just yet. We shall see how well they listen to feedback in the weeks and months to come, going from pre release that aspect does seem positive. Whether it can grow though, and in a meaningful way is the hard part

  2. The bugs, the bugs! It’s like Starship Troopers in ESO.

    It does feel like if you scratch the surface there’s not much there. But dang if that surface isn’t pretty and fun. Quests might be rote but they are better than fed-ex quests (like the crouch/hunting ones). Curious as to what happens when the quests end but that isn’t for a long while.

    • It is rather enjoyable I just think I overdid it with all in row.
      they are definitely than your standard quests. I also like how you can mostly stealth around in quite a few to avoid combat completely
      I don’t see it running out for a long time. There are three factions after all and I’ve only nearly finished one, two of which you can do for veteran ranks and an increased challenge

  3. I mentioned in passing the other day that I was noticing that “everyone” in Tamriel is somehow cursed by some past event, so I guess that was my nod in agreement toward your “these stories are all seeming to be the same.”

    I guess I’m lucky in my avoidance of bugs though. The worst I’ve experienced it quest mobs that don’t spawn (either to kill or to talk to in order to advance the quest) but I can usually log out and back in and resolve that’s enough to resolve it. And for the ones where it wasn’t enough — every one of them has now been mentioned in a patch note as having bee fixed, though I’ve not necessarily gone back to the lower areas they’re in to actually see. I have not ever fallen through the world, not even once. In guild chat and Mumble I occasionally hear people mention they’ve fallen through, but it’s not common, so for you to get hit 5x in one day does seem really excessive.

    I’ve also noticed as you have that as you get higher up the “challenge” in the trash mobs is that there are more of them, not that they necessarily do anything differently. I have noticed that healers stay in the back and heal themselves as well as the mobs in their group so they’re definitely priority targets, and the other mobs do use some rudimentary tactics, but… yeah, the easiest character I have right now combat-wise is my AE-focused DK, Run in, spam 4-5 abilities and trash is all gone regardless of how many mobs were in the pack. Conversely, my rogue-built sorcerer can take 1-2 mobs no problem, but as the packs are getting bigger it’s becoming a bit more of a concern as to what kill order to use, praying for that Crystal Fragments proc to go off, etc. Though he’s getting close to the next levels of abilities which I think will really make his build take off, but right now things can get a bit frustrating with him at times. Not hugely so though. I still find him a blast to play and I’ll admit that having to think a bit more tactically with him in order to take out those 3-packs instead of just spamming AE’s is it’s own sort of fun little challenge. OTOH,. I’d never take him into even a public dungeon solo, where my DK will run into those and kinda laugh as the people she sees in passing take out 1 mob in the time it takes her to kill a pack of 7. . . .

    Of course, the DK’s level 35 and pretty much has her entire build worked up, while the sorcerer is still only maybe 2/3 of the way to his at level 20. I am hoping that when I get him “built out” that he’ll really feel like he’s come into his own then also.

    Either way, I’m still having a blast playing ESO now matter which character I’m on (I also have a healing nightblade and an AE focused templar mage-type to boot) and I’m putting in a lot of hours — to the point where my wife is starting to complain she doesn’t see me much anymore. . . . .

    • haha, yep everyone seems cursed by at least one quest

      I think it was because I was playing for so long in a row for me to see so many bugs. I also tend to what to climb just about anything and everything that looks climeable and when I do that it often bugs out.

      I’m the same with my DK as your sorc. I mainly went for the tank role which makes these packs quite hard to deal with. I still can but it is far more challenging. I am working on building that role now but still a few levels to go with the destro staff. I have absolutely no problem with the bigger solo bosses though.

      I’m still having a lot of fun too although, I really want to do more of the dungeons. I seem to have been missing them until now but they are a lot of fun

  4. Pingback: [ESO] MMO Tropes in re: ESO | Nomadic Gamers

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