Camelot Post Discuss Concerns Surrounding ESO's Payment Model
The original announcement regarding the financial model for The Elder Scrolls Online was met with mixed receptions but now that players are free to share their experiences, has that opinion changed?

The general response to pay-to-play announcements is always the same, regardless of the actual game. On one hand you have those that are willing to pay for extra quality, a quality that’s not usually tied to free-to-play titles, and on the other hand the players that are never willing to pay a monthly subscription. Occasionally a few smaller voices can be heard, debating the pros and cons but for the most part MMO gamers are in one field or the other.

Personally I feel the group supporting the general increase in quality provided by the pay-to-play genre is growing smaller with every poor release. Titles like Star Wars: The Old Republic have proven that hype and backing from a strong IP are not always enough to carry a pay-to-play title to success but can The Elder Scrolls Online succeed where ToR failed?

Now that the NDA has lifted players and journalists alike are free to share their thoughts and opinions on the game and as is normal with a closed beta, the opinions are mixed. Many players and outlets are reporting that it’s an experience true to The Elder Scrolls franchise while others are saying it’s a typical MMO experience, lacking the excitement needed to warrant a monthly subscription but what do we here at Camelot Post think?

Sadly I wasn’t given as much time in the beta as many of you but I did sample enough to get a general feel for the game. The character creation and introduction to the world were both amazing, managing to duplicate the excitement of playing a new Elder Scrolls game perfectly. There are epic moments, great NPC interactions and plenty of combat in just the first 30 minutes of gameplay and it almost had me convinced. That was until I stepped out into the wider world.

Once the introduction sequence was over I was thrown into Tamriel expecting a fully fledged Elder Scrolls experience, letting myself forget the required restrictions and restraints needed for an MMO to work. Sadly however the ugly face of MMO mechanics showed itself before too long and I was reminded that it’s just not possible to offer the trademark freedom of Elder Scrolls in an MMO.

Sure, there was a large map that I could explore to my hearts content but I faced problems with level restrictions before too long. Don’t misunderstand my experience, I really did enjoy many elements of the game but as a package, I do not think it will survive for long in the pay-to-play market.

I have no doubt that The Elder Scrolls Online will still make for an incredibly successful MMO under the free-to-play banner but if it manages to retain a subscription model 12-14 months after release, I’ll print this article and eat it.

What about you? If you’ve tried The Elder Scrolls Online would you be willing to pay for it once its released?

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3 Responses to “The Elder Scrolls Online Will Struggle To Survive In The Pay-To-Play Market” Subscribe

  1. Vote -1 Vote +1Pois
    February 17, 2014 at 4:53 pm #

    I agree, after having played 20+ hours in the Beta I couldn’t recommend this game to any friends let alone buy the game myself. It’s a step back from Guild Wars 2 and Tera and is riding on the TES lore and high profile voice actors. Take those 2 away and you’re left with a game that would fail to rival some free to play games. If the game manages to maintain its subscription model 6 months after release I will be impressed, and if ZoS actually recoups its development costs I will be even more impressed.

  2. Vote -1 Vote +1Northil
    February 17, 2014 at 7:20 pm #

    I played 3 whole days almost on the last beta, and while I only saw PvE what I saw was amazing. Sure, there were some bugs, but overall the game feels like a. Elder scrolls game. The problem with Star Wars is that Star Wars fans are not necessarily game fans of a particular series. Many of those who complain are nomad MMOs with little to no love of the elder scrolls series. Gameplay and world is a combination of morrowind, oblivion with skyrim mechanics. The linearity exists. In first and mid levels on purpose, to get new players used to controls and game. What sets this game WAY above Tera or GW2 is, beyond the excellent graphics and world itself the excellent first person perspective immersion. Skill sets exist only as shortcuts to be implemented in battle as secondary — similar to using various boosts in the s ingle player games. The music system looks great, and the blurring of NPC with PC is fantastic. This is a game for elder scrolls gamers who want to play together with others and explore Tamriel. We would also like the free to play trolls to be left out of our collective experience. Out of the millions of elder scrolls fans, even a portion will suffice to keep the game going as a sub. It’s not only about quantity. Quality matters too. This is a quality game, and anyone who doesn’t feel immersed in, cannot really be an elder scrolls fan who likes to share his gaming with friends. If you’re looking for just an MMO, go elsewhere. If you want elder scrolls game that’s here to stay, this is it.

    • Vote -1 Vote +1Frostfire20
      February 18, 2014 at 9:38 pm #

      I disagree. I played PvE and PvP. I was in on the January beta too. I agree it’s a good game, and it certainly has its niche.

      But your argument has several flaws. First, as far as I can see, the graphics of this game are no different than the graphics of any other game. It’s all about the setting you play on. The first person immersion really grabbed me, but I found myself switching to third person for the wider FOV, both in and out of combat. The FPS FOV is really small, like 80 degrees.

      Second, I do not believe skill sets exist to be used as secondary attacks, or “boosts.” The skill system is DEEP. Skill points are few and far between. The whole point of combat skills are to bridge the gap between console players who use 1 or 2 skills, and pc players who have 30+ keys mapped out and/or clickable a la WoW. In short, your regular hack-and-slash attacks are secondary, people will rely on their skills to get the job done.

      Thirdly, this isn’t just a multiplayer Skyrim game. If it was, no one would pay the $15 a month because they’re all used to a flat $60. This is an MMO heavily influenced by Elder Scrolls. People who play MMOs are going to pay that outrageous fee.

      I play MMOs, but I am not one of them. (I actually don’t like most, if not all, MMOs because of the level grind to cap out. Reason being: I used to play Runescape, which is the most grindy-est game of them all.

      Bottom line, this is going to be an MMO. Yes, it’s Elder Scrolls, but it’s still an MMO. I’m a broke college student, I don’t have the cash to shell out for a monthly sub. With all the controversy surrounding it, I’m interested to see how many people buy into it.

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