Features, Games

The Elder Scrolls Online, or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Console MMO

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It is absolutely no secret that I love the Elder Scrolls series of games. I have given more hours of my life to that series, way back since its first title “Arena”, than I would care to admit.

Traversing the provinces of Tamriel brings this gamer unmitigated joy. The scope of freedom that you are given in these games is enough to completely take over your life. Skyrim was an absolutely beautiful game. The province of Skyrim was huge, beautiful in its coldness, and open ended. I am still finding things in that game after over 400 hours of playtime.

And then, at E3 they did it. It was annouced that the Elder Scrolls Online was coming to next gen consoles, along with a great looking trailer narrated by one of my favourite actors, Michael Gambon. I actully leapt up from my chair and cheered at this announcement. But all was not well in MMO land.

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MMO’s are one of those things that can divide fans. When the Elder Scrolls Online was first annouced, there was a lot of backlash against it. People concerned that an MMO would spell the end of the traditional Elder Scrolls series, a vocal section of people rallying against the game mechanics when details first came out, people worried that it would destroy existing lore of the series … some fans weren’t happy.

And when they announced that it was coming to consoles, that seemed to add fuel to the fire of those that were unhappy. People hated the idea that a PC MMORPG was going to be put onto consoles. How dare Bethesda do such a thing! It was going to ruin the game even further by giving it to the “Console casuals”. It was as though Molag Bal himself had rained fire down upon the PC players.

Elder Scrolls Online MMO Game PC Consoles SCreen Gameplay

And yet, here I am, a PC and Console player, very excited to be able to play a proper MMORPG on the next console that I choose to buy.

MMORPG’s haven’t done very well on consoles. That’s no great secret. Only a handful have made it to consoles, and the incoming Final Fantasy XIV, coming to Ps3, is one of the lucky few. I have always been disappointed by the lack of representation of MMORPG’s on consoles, especially on the Xbox 360. (The very fact that FF XIV isn’t coming to Xbox 360 is a bone of contention with me.)  I always secretly, in the back of my mind, wished that Blizzard would port World of Warcraft to consoles, knowing that there was no way that was ever going to happen.

Elder Scrolls Online MMO Game PC Consoles SCreen Gameplay

Surely, with so many console owners, an MMORPG or two on them is a natural progression? I like to think so. There are a lot of people who play consoles, who love RPG’s. Having a huge and persistent world and being able to play that with a controller in front of your TV would be an absolute joy.

So the fact that Zenimax have been so daring in saying “Yes, we are bringing Elder Scrolls Online to the next gen of consoles” could not please me more. And the PC gamers have nothing to fear, the console players will be on seperate servers to you. I certainly hope that others will join me in stating that yes, having an MMORPG like Elder Scrolls Online is indeed a very good thing, and will be joining me on day one to traverse the entirety of Tamriel, fight for the ruby throne, and take down Molag Bal and his hordes of horrors from the plane of Coldharbour in Oblivion.

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Jonas Alexander

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