This is a game that has been on my radar since it was released, however when it was announced I had no intention of buying it due to the subscription that was required. Don’t get me wrong it wasn’t because of the subscription, but mainly because I couldn’t afford to pay that amount of money out each month, and I don’t think that I was the only one. However, I was drawn back to the game when they announced that they were no longer going to be doing the subscriptions and it would be a simple ‘Buy the Disk and play the game’ model… With your standard Micro transactions. Again, I don’t think I was the only one who changed their mind when this was announced.
One of the many things I love about this game, is after doing the initial prologue etc you are free to go where ever you want, you can roam the lands to your hearts content, although if you’re just starting out I suggest doing missions and levelling your character up, stick to a region and do the missions there first before venturing to other areas. Because there is a very good chance you will cross the border into another area and find yourself as a level 10-15 facing a horde of level 35-40 monsters… As Joon did… Didn’t end too well… Brave Sir Robin moment was needed…. Saying that though, if you are in a Guild with Friends, and you’re all out adventuring together, there can be safety in numbers against certain higher level beasts… However, some higher level beasts will destroy you all….
This games open world is vast… and I mean HUGE! I have only tickled the surface of the world in Auridon and Grahtwood and a little bit in Cyrodill for the PvP… Which i’ll get onto a bit later in the review.
I think I must have played this game for at least 30+ hours and have only just done most of Auridon (the stuff that’s showing on the map anyway) so the content and missions are there to play, and another thing I love about this game is that everything can be done with your Friends. Each of the missions (other than the solo quests) in the game are playable with Friends or anyone else for that matter who is at the same stage, or at least mission as you. You can see other players in the world which gives the settings a nice sense of atmosphere. The towns are beautifully designed and the houses/buildings have that wonderful medieval feel to them. They kind of remind me of the houses from Bowerstone in Fable 2.
There is good variety when it comes to missions within the game, some are short and easy and it’s just speaking to people, others can be more demanding with clearing out caves/mines, so there is a good variety within the game meaning that there is always going to be something different to do… Unless you speak to 2 people who have the same type of mission one after another 😛
The dark anchors within the game are a very good way to get some good new gear for your character as well as some XP along the way. Each anchor within the game is a different level and will give you items for that level. However, I will advise to never try and take on an anchor around or above your level when there is only 2 or 3 of you. Evils come thick and fast and you will quickly find yourself over ran. The basic idea behind the Anchors are that you take on wave after wave of bad guys and earn some good stuff, normally when these start if you are in a surrounding vicinity you will hear the sounds of the horns going off and you will see the main frame of the anchor in the sky so they are not hard to miss.
Along with Anchors there are Group Dungeons and Group Bosses for you and your Guild to take part in. Dungeons usually contain 3 stages each of which has a boss at the end which does require teamwork and coordination as these bosses are hard… When you complete them though it is very satisfying and there is a sense of achievement.
Another thing I like with this game although it can be annoying is that when you have a marker set and its showing in your compass, 9 times out of 10 an as the bird flies route wont suffice… mainly because you will have a big mountain in front of you which you can’t climb and have to walk around. So you have to plan your journeys to make sure you know where you’re going and how to get to the marker. Or if you are like me, just wing it and see if you can get there on blind luck… Might take you a lot longer, but who cares? Just enjoy the scenery… Also, I would highly recommend getting a horse… If you haven’t unlocked Wayshrines in different areas it can make for a very long journey and horses can help with this!
I have found the PvP in the game to be quite annoying. This is an element that I want to enjoy and play regularly but I have come across problems with it that I find when getting into combat make it unplayable and quickly find myself going back to do missions in another area. What I have found when getting into combat is that people have been able to hit me from a distance they shouldn’t be. I will be several metres away from an opponent and they have been able to swing their sword and hit me even though they are no way near me and it gets frustrating. I think I’m going to have to level up a bit more and get some better armour and I’ll review the PvP side of things properly.
There have been other issues that I have come across with the game as well, such as he constant message of ‘This maybe an unusually long load time’ and being booted from the servers, this I’m hoping will get better as things stabilise with the servers, but it is kind of annoying, especially when you’re trying to respawn and you’re sat there for up to 5 minutes waiting to load back in… (Yup, I have waited 5 minutes before… Maybe even longer at times…)
There have been people who I have seen compare this game to Destiny, and I think that there have been some comments that have been quite right, and I feel that there are elements of the game which you can compare. Such as the Anchors being similar to the public events….The one thing I will say in regards to this game to Destiny, is this is far better planned out. Specially when it comes to the Anchors, each time an anchor starts off it will have different enemies spawning so it makes it different each time.
I have found that the looting system within the game is brilliant as well and not like the aforementioned game above. Everything is always different when it comes to the weapons and is useful. There is always things that are the same such as health, magicka and stamina, however these are useful and I find there isn’t much of this type of item that I am destroying or selling.
The emotes in the game are absolutely fantastic. There is such variety with the different things that you can do, from the different dances from the races, to doing push ups and playing the lute… Makes for such enjoyment in an already enjoyable game.
In conclusion I find this to be a brilliant game, however there are some glaring issues within the game from NPCs not showing and you being unable to speak to them or they start attacking you and you fight back. There are also problems as stated above with being hit when you shouldnt, but other than that the game is brilliant and there is plenty for you to do in such a vast open world.
Joon is going to give Elder Scrolls Online an 8.5. Brilliant game, but there are some issues.[yasr_overall_rating]