So Elder Scrolls online is apparently still a thing yeh? I haven’t heard much talk around it for a while except for the rather dismal reports from null.. about the hours played on raptr. It’s another one of those times, like Wildstar where I think most people saw it coming but not many find delight in it happening. This is a genre I love and while I might rant rave and even troll occasionally (Hi gw2!) I still love it and want everything to kind of succeed, at least enough to see it continue on with a healthy population.
Even though you don’t hear about it very often ESO still is updating, not at the originally planned 1 month but still at a recent pace and it has introduced quite a few new pieces of content as well as new mechanics. This 1.5 update on the test server now seems to be a big and rather important one though. Maybe the game change it needed to turn this big ole ship of fail around.
The biggest change here has to be the removal of Veteran Points. There will still be Veteran Ranks but the way to earn them now is just with regular experience. Before it was just quest grind but now any activity is useful so this will make Leveling these far more flexible.
Veteran Ranks was the primary decision behind me quitting. I didn’t want to be stuck behind even more quest filler to optimise my character and the horror of levelling another character through all that again was just terrifying. It was a terrible restrictive and lonely experience too as it often further stopped you from playing with friends or a guild if you wanted to make progress.
Veteran Ranks are getting a bit reworked for this new system as well with quite a bit of the grind being taken away. There will be a flat experience amount per rank that seems` pretty reasonable and the character gains from each level are being reduced by 33%. While gear will still have gear huge difference at these Levels at least this will do well to lessen the issue in PvP.. probably not but at least people can get ranks easier now.
The other big change is for Dungeons to now have a scaling system that is set by the players. Normal Dungeons will scale only above their introduced level but scale up to Veteran Rank 12 and all existing Veteran Dungeons will be able to scale from VR rank 1 to 12. Many solo instances are getting the same treatment as well. This is massive. Beforehand there was only a couple of dungeons available at each rank, sometimes one or none and this really limited what you could play.
With its scaling as set by players it also makes it much easier to play with others once you reach level cap as you’re not having to be within specific ranges for content. It also creates a lot more options for cap and also ways of leveling and getting gear. Mobs will drop on level equipment and with the VR getting changed to experience they now have a worthwhile end game and not a continuous treadmill.
There also is quite a few big content additions across the game world. More crafting additions, quest chains and dailies for the Undaunted group, new max level dungeons and also low-level improvements to the delves.
Apart from this there is a truly massive amount of fixes and balance changes. absolutely stunned.
It does make a me a little sad as if I wasn’t into Archeage at the moment I would probably be going in to check it out once more and maybe make an actual effort of gaining some VR Ranks. It was an average game before and still is in parts due to leaning on the boring side but with all these big changes it gives far more options to avoid the stuff I didn’t like before. You know, the endless, soul-crushing quest grind.
It seems to me like they are trying to make those large fundamental changes that Diablo 3 made for its console launch in order to get a more favourable response from its players. A game crippled by bad decisions that annoy and frustrate enough to lose its players gets changes with enough interesting additions to draw back in its older players. And it could work. Now lets see this console release Zenimax or at least a press statement, it’s been a while.