The Elder Scrolls Online Will Fail
If you’re a regular reader of my articles here at Camelot Post you’re probably well aware that I am extremely excited about The Elder Scrolls Online however, that does not make me blind to the potential issues that could mean The Elder Scrolls Online will fail. Previously I have discussed the challenges facing The Elder Scrolls Online and I believe the developers are going to fail at least a few of these challenges, resulting in a game that’s nothing like an Elder Scrolls title. ESO is my last hope for an MMORPG game to keep me entertained past the honeymoon period and if it fails, I can’t see anything else in the genre appealing to me again.

So despite the fact I’m excited and I really want ESO to succeed, why am I so convinced it’s going to fail? Multiplayer support is arguably one of the biggest requests from the Elder Scrolls community but until now Bethesda have never really supplied anything that can support more than a single player experience. However, I think the majority of players hoping for a multiplayer aspect were looking more for a cooperative experience, rather than a massively multiplayer one.

The very definition of an Elder Scrolls game, what lies at the very core and keeps players returning game after game, freedom. It’s a best selling franchise that spans decades and despite massive leaps in technology, the fundamental aspects of the game remain the same. Offer the player as much freedom as possible, freedom to explore some of the most in-depth worlds to ever grace the video-game industry.

Whether you explore the world, embark on the epic main quest line or collect treasures and Daedric artifacts, every player has their calling. The beauty and appeal of an Elder Scrolls game is that calling, it’s different for every player and is limited only by imagination.

An MMO game is entirely different. Players are funneled into linear quest lines, linear objectives and fairly shallow progression. We recently wrote an article discussing the mechanics involved in exploring dungeons and that article gives evidence to my claims. It sounded unimaginative, lackluster and typical of the MMO genre, not words I would associate with any of the titles from Bethesda.

Many other aspects that I’ve discussed in the past also fall into the category of being counter productive in an MMO Game. A game that hopes to keep players returning day after day must balance time vs reward, another mathematical equation that doesn’t exist in typical Elder Scrolls games. Practically every title allows players to obtain a massive variety of rewards and artifacts in a very short amount of time, if they choose to do so. This free approach cannot work in an MMO game.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not simply ranting about ESO. Bethesda are one of my most loved developers and I seriously hope they can pull it off. However, we’ve all seen big names enter the MMO world and very few of the popular IP’s ever manage to deliver. This isn’t always the fault of the developers. Anything with such a big following is bound to be met with certain expectations and quite often these expectations are not possible to meet. This is my main concern as an potential player of ESO. I hold the franchise in such high regard I’m not sure Bethesda would ever be able to reach that bar with an MMO. Do you think The Elder Scrolls Online will fail? Leave a comment below.

Tags:

Connect with Blaine Smith on Google+

15 Responses to “Why The Elder Scrolls Online Will Fail” Subscribe

  1. -2 Vote -1 Vote +1dimitriy
    July 9, 2013 at 9:16 am #

    Hello I read your article, it’s sad how wrong you are. You state that Bethesda has no experience with multiplayer support right? Well newsflash, Bethesda is NOT developing the game, Zenimax Online studios is. Bethesda is the publisher. Please note that the core of ZOS was made with the foundation and ideology to make a MMO first but to make it in the elder scrolls universe.

    • +1 Vote -1 Vote +1Blaine
      July 11, 2013 at 8:37 pm #

      Bethesda, Zenimax Studios, Zenimax Online, they’re all part of the same ownership and even share founders across the 3 companies. Past projects have also shown that it’s common for talent to switch among the 3 for a variety of projects. They also all work in the same building. So let’s reword it to this

      “ZOS has no experience with large-scale multiplayer”. My point still stands :D

      • +3 Vote -1 Vote +1Jack B. Nimble
        January 31, 2014 at 7:37 pm #

        Blizzard had no prior experience with large-scale multiplayer in the form of MMOs. Your point is moot.

  2. +2 Vote -1 Vote +1Jacob
    July 23, 2013 at 1:31 pm #

    I think that you make very valid points in your article, and I agree with you: I don’t want the game to fail, but it has a good chance to do so. Bethesda, technically embodied by Zenimax here, has had no experience porting a single player RPG like the elder scrolls to the multiplayer experience. I am hoping for the best and if the game does not result in failure, will be rejoiceing for the breakthrough action that TES has brought to the gaming community.

  3. -15 Vote -1 Vote +1Lol
    July 23, 2013 at 1:37 pm #

    (click to show comment)

  4. +1 Vote -1 Vote +1Valtharius the Mad
    July 24, 2013 at 6:35 pm #

    Go to Point A – Get Quest to go to Point B and collect a given number of objects or slay a given number of mobs.

    Go to Point B – Collect/Slay then go back to Point A for reward.

    Sometimes go to Point C, D and E for other things.

    Wash – Rinse – Repeat

    This is why I stopped playing MMO’s and only play single player RPG’s. If I want a true multiplayer experience, I will grab my dice bag and DM’s screen and play a live game.

    MMO’s are boring eye candy.

    • -2 Vote -1 Vote +1Adronicus
      July 24, 2013 at 8:30 pm #

      I hate questing. I’d prefer to kill mobs all day over the run around tasks.

      One thing I did like was the public quest zones in Warhammer Online. That was a pretty cool idea that kept the area confined and anyone could participate in the event.

  5. -5 Vote -1 Vote +1USuck
    July 29, 2013 at 10:07 am #

    (click to show comment)

  6. +1 Vote -1 Vote +1alphatwo
    August 2, 2013 at 7:55 am #

    no hope for mmorpgs well maybe i can inspire you to look at one that is being developed by an independent group. the name is called Citadel of Sorcery being made by MMOMagic Inc. Check it out at least o.o

  7. -7 Vote -1 Vote +1Anon1
    August 12, 2013 at 12:34 pm #

    (click to show comment)

    • +1 Vote -1 Vote +1Blaine
      August 12, 2013 at 6:44 pm #

      I’ve had my fair share of experience in the online world. Have played most big releases over the last 10 years and plenty of lesser known MMO games as well. I fully support ESO and I’m really hoping it succeeds. However, I’m not blind to the fact that beta testers are already discovering large problems :)

  8. +2 Vote -1 Vote +1Johnny
    August 29, 2013 at 11:01 am #

    I am excited for the game. I enjoy most MMO’s. And even if this one just has the “guts” from other MMO’s with the Skins of my favorite RPG, it should still be good. Although, Gamers themselves have change, we aren’t 13 anymore, we have jobs and bills so a monthly fee will not keep me playing for long. Really I just wanted a friend or two to be able to join my world in Morrowind. More like Diablo style, group of friends in an instanced open world.

  9. -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Havock
    December 29, 2013 at 2:36 pm #

    Bethesda ignored the biggest clue to what Elder Scrolls players really wanted when they shut down Skyrim multiplayer mods. They interpreted the interest in multiplayer game-play to mean fans wanted WoW in a Elder Scrolls world. They promised the world, including Skyrim-like game-play but it is nothing like The Elder Scrolls or Skyrim. Its just another useless hamster wheel. Elder Scrolls fans will not enjoy it. I didn’t enjoy the beta one bit. Unfortunately someone convinced Bethesda to create an MMORPG.

  10. -1 Vote -1 Vote +1MrMe
    January 28, 2014 at 10:04 am #

    This game is little more than a restructured version of GW2 and from what I hear from beta leaks the “RVR” area is little more than an instanced area. Basically instead of like GW2 where you have WvW dynamics where one whole server is put up against another server instead they instance players to different servers at random to keep rvr populations even, so it wont be everyone vs everyone ever. They just reverse engineered it.
    The combat videos show choppy animations and an honestly horrid combat system that looks like you crossed GW2 with Neverwinter, only Neverwinter is less choppy.
    Now they are counting on Elder Scrolls fans to carry this game on IP alone which will be hard since most of them bailed after finding out that its going to be a GW2/DAOC clone. So most of the advocates now mind you are ex DAOC vets, who make up a grand total of about 200k players AT BEST. So unless DAOC is gong to take over the market something it couldnt do in its prime then I say this game is doomed. The PVE is also basically ezmode so they wont stand a chance against Wildstar or EQN, the PVP is garbage so I wont play, WOW players wont play a game with no world pvp and no pve, no sandbox elements, no crafting to speak of really, no housing.

    Other than Argonian skins there is really no reason to play this game.

  11. +1 Vote -1 Vote +1Annoyed
    February 19, 2014 at 12:38 pm #

    Eber thought it’s not about you TES Players? There existiert other people who just could have Fun with an mmo like this …

Leave a Reply

Veteran Content For ESO To Get An Elder Scrolls Makeover

One of the biggest problems with creating a community-based social experience from a traditionally single player franchise is bridging the […]

What Zenimax Need To Avoid When Monetizing A Free-To-Play Elder Scrolls Online

It would be naive for me to assume The Elder Scrolls Online will retain a subscription model in coming years […]

How Zenimax Can Safely Monetize A Free-To-Play Elder Scrolls Online

It’s not so much a matter of if but of when. Practically every pay-to-play MMO launched in recent years has […]

A Deeper Look At The Elder Scrolls Online’s Veteran Dungeons

In the latest developer feature from Zenimax Online Studios, the team offers additional insight into one of the games most […]

Zenimax Offer Further Details For Elder Scrolls Online Console Launch Delay

The Elder Scrolls Online continues to enjoy its time in the MMO spotlight but recent news surrounding the console release […]

Latest Elder Scrolls Online Update & AMA Left Me Feeling Disappointed

Following E3′s exciting demonstration of an exclusive 3v3 PvP mode, Zenimax Online Studios have released a small update and a […]