I have to admit that my gaming time has been severely lacking lately. I’m interviewing for a new job (my current contract expires end of April), getting outdoors to spend time with my horse, and generally enjoying the non-gaming life. However, when I *have* been playing, it’s been Elder Scrolls Online.
I think I really did myself a favor by going in ‘blind’. I didn’t read many reviews, I barely played the beta after encountering a progress-halting bug. All the comments I’ve read stated that the PvP was really enjoyable but the PvE is the same-ol-same-ol and I was slightly jaded by that feedback. I even heard several times that it feels nothing like an Elder Scrolls world. I honestly, truly, don’t understand what game these people were playing or how they were playing it. I guess that’s the beauty of games — we all experience them differently. But so far, I feel like questing in TESO has been the most engaging and interesting experience of any MMO in a LONG time. The stories are varied, interesting, and interconnected. There isn’t some linear path to take — exploring feels meaningful and valuable. I feel rewarded. Leveling is slow, which is refreshing and gives the game that kind of enormous feeling scope that I felt in Skyrim. The lore is familiar and everything about my play experience is reminiscent of Skyrim or Oblivion, and I think it’s quite a good game.
My biggest hangups so far are around the skill-based classes. I am terribly bad at building classes in this fashion, and I tried to make a healing Templar but ended up hobbling myself a bit because I can’t really complete some level-appropriate quests. I have been using a Restoration staff, but apparently that’s not great for damage output? I don’t really know what I’m doing wrong but I am almost tempted to reroll except I know I’m only level 8 and I have a ton of skill points to receive in the future that will help make my Templar stronger. But if anyone has Templar tips, feel free to lay them in the comments. =)
Here’s some screenshots. It’s really a beautiful game.