Saturday, 13 June 2015

Elder Scrolls Online Review (Xbox One)

There is something very familiar about Elder Scrolls online. The three alliances involved in the war resemble those realms in Dark Age of Camelot, so too is the design of the multiplayer.
First of all, if you're just expecting this to be an online Skyrim, you're not going to find it. This game covers all of Tamriel and is brilliant because of it. The story is fairly similar in a way to previous games but play the same missions in different settings across the Alliances. We've played Daggerfall covenent and Alteri Dominion so far and both are equally good in their own right. They have their own unique landscapes and inhabitants. Daggerfall is closer to the nature side of the enemy scale and Dominion is more demonic.

The classes are slightly different, as you'd expect to find them in an MMO, you have four classes to choose from. We've played the Sorcerer, which uses Thundercasting, Daedra summoning and dakr magic as its three base skills. From there you can choose to go up other paths that you fancy, weapon skill trees such as Healing staff, duel weilding weapons etc and crafting skill trees. Also, you are entitled to a skillset for your alliance and chosen race, which can give you an edge over other races. The combat is virtually unchanged from Skyrim, letting you play 3rd or 1st person, is still refined a little more to be a bit more responsive than its older brother.
Questlines are great. The fighters and mage quest lines are back then there are mini questlines you can do which will ultimately push on the story when you gain levels. Only problem so far is that because the world is so open sometimes people can do the objective you're waiting for, now you have to wait for it to reload or try find another that is similar. It can, however, work to your advantage, sometimes you can walk in to a mini boss foght towards the end as long as you get a hit in, you get credit. Saving you time.

The world, as beautiful as it is, has a dark side. At the time of writing Zenimax and Bethesda are working on the fixes for invisible NPCs which can kill you without taking damage and loading errors which boot you off the game. These are minor inconviences when it only happends a few times in a session, but can lead to frustration later.
Voice system is a great feature that Destiny was missing, but public voice can become intrusive and annoying. Guild chat on the other hand lets certain ranks join a chat channel where only the guild can hear you no matter what alliance they're playing in. You can also set up an officers chat also, if you so desire.
Another thing we were worried about was guilds, not many people on Xbox get the concept of them. They have been well recieved and you can have five active on your account at once, belonging to just one at a time. This is great if you want to try join an guild of every alliance for PvP reasons. Problem is you need to grow to 50 members to buy guild traders and bigger bank vaults. Which in itself will prove to be an gargantuan task.

PvP itself is a massive war of something you may find in Game of Thrones. There are keeps, towers and other buildings to conquer. Keeps are the most important. To take these down, you have to be in a small army and use seige weapons to take down the walls. Once inside, it becomes a game of capture the flag. Where your army can capture the base of your alliances flag and gain the keep as their own, letting a guild of their own claim it as their frontier keep. You can fast travel using wayshrines inside keeps, just like PvE, to get to battles faster.

The more keeps you have the better the rewards at the end of the season. Each campaign can last upto 30days at the end we would get an reward based on individual player scores and the domination of the alliance.

Soundtrack is amazing, tou can come across songs from Skyrim, Morrowind and Oblivion as well as the music of the game itself. Creating an epic score that not many games can rival.

Graphics are a beefed up version of Skyrims. But maybe to sacrifice for the scale of the game, they can sometimes look a little suspect.

Overal 8/10
Graphics 7/10
Soundtrack 9/10
Gameplay 8/10
PvP 8/10
PvE 8/10

Once the bugs are fixed (like any MMO) this will be the master of the console, rivaling online games like Destiny and Borderlanda for your attention.

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