Reacting to TESO: Morrowind

The Elder Scrolls Online’s slow march to its June 6th expansion release continues ever onward, with more and more information being drip fed to the hyped up masses as we get closer and closer to the day we return to Morrowind.

Our Editor in Chief here at MMOGames, Nick Shively, recently had the opportunity to visit the headquarters of ZeniMax Online Studios for a behind the scenes look at The Elder Scrolls Online’s upcoming Morrowind expansion.

TESO Morrowind: What Makes an Expansion?

So The Elder Scrolls Online just announced its first expansion, and naturally it’s already found itself entangled at the center of the game community’s drama du jour. Now as much I love to get into the ol’ whining on the internet, in this case, I find the drama a lot less interesting than the potential questions it raises.

The Elder Scrolls Online Gets an Expansion

Yesterday the Elder Scrolls Online announced its first expansion, Morrowind. I’ve long had a complicated relationship with the game, having played off-and-on since the very first beta we weren’t even allowed to tell anyone was happening. The relationship meandered off and on since then, from deciding to pass on the game at launch to eventually returning after, against all…

The Increasingly Troubling Monetization of The Elder Scrolls Online, Part 2

It’s time for another bout of Isarii vs Monetization, the epic, windmill-tilting saga of one man shouting into a gale force of increasingly common industry practices. Today we return to The Elder Scrolls Online, a game uniquely dear to my heart as the original starting point of this whole internet wordsmithing thing, which has continued its ever-trundling encroachment into a quagmire of whale-hunting cash shop fuckery.

Why MMO Cosmetics Matter

There’s a popular conception among the MMO cognoscenti that irrespective of circumstance, monetization involving cosmetics is never a problem. There isn’t a fundamental issue with that line of thinking – I would expect everyone could agree on a general tiering of monetization egregiousness with competitive pay-to-win as a capstone and a variety of other methodologies cascading into generally the same order with only a minor degree of variance – but the idea that this lesser evil can never be problematic isn’t one I can fully agree with.

Raising the Gear Cap in a Scaling World

It’s been almost a year since The Elder Scrolls Online last upped the gear level with the addition of the Imperial City last July, and we’ve seen some broad changes to the way content is delivered since then, most importantly through the continuing proliferation of level scaling technology, which culminated in the recent announcement that scaling will be coming to all of Tamriel. Will these changes introduce challenges to the next gear cap raise? This one thinks they will.

A Return to Tamriel and Podcasting News

Although I normally try to stick to content that leans more towards article content than blog content, today’s post is going to be unabashedly bloggy. I’ve been up to a lot stuff recently that hasn’t shown up on The Errant Penman yet, so I bundled it all up into a single post tackling it all at once. Read on for an MMO update, fan site work, and links to podcast appearances both past and future!

Plotting the Future of ESO’s Endgame

The Elder Scrolls Online community has been incensed with conversation focusing on the game’s current endgame, its shortcomings, and what the future will hold. Sparking new life into debates over the two pillars of the current endgame design – the Champion System, which is widely criticized for its rampant power creep, and Veteran Ranks, the unpopular post-level cap levels which were already promised to be in the process of being removed from the game – was the news that before it gets better, things are going to get worse, as the VR cap will be raising once again to VR16 in Update 7.

A Farewell to TESO

Even after writing this post, I still question whether or not I should press the publish button. Leaving a game you care for is hard, but explaining it to others without coming off poorly is much, much harder. My intent here is not to bash the game, its creators, or to lobby for change, but…