I’m enjoying the adventures set out in The Elder Scrolls Online, My Wife and I have moved on from StormHaven and have nearly finished the content in RivenSpire. There was a period where we had a few grey missions in StormHaven that didn’t yield much XP yet we were compelled to complete them, which brings us neatly onto today’s topic.
Went it comes to the grey missions I’d much rather enjoy the content despite not getting much in the way of XP. There is some fantastic writing and since I’m playing good money for it why wouldn’t I want to consume it.
Each zone has a number of elements that appeal to the Explorer element of my 4-part Bartle profile. These range from scenic view points to Skyshards that are dotted around the area map and tend to be discovered while questing. Of course there are crafting components that need harvesting and treasure chests to loot.
These things start to appeal to the Achiever side of me especially as you discover unique overland bosses that have achievements linked to them, plus once you have killed such bosses the icon on the map goes from black to white, the same is true for caves/dungeons and crafting locations.
It’s nice to be encouraged to explore and complete an area, rather than just jumping between quest hubs.
The recent accounement “The Road Ahead – June 4th” highlights all the ongoing changes includinge maintenance patch changes, Large updates and future updates. The full post can be found here.
First up are changes being rolled out as part of the usual maintenance patching which is focusing on balancing the Nightblade and Dragonknight classes, they are trying not to nerf or overpower the classes and altering the abilities in small increments.
The second update (2) is due to drop towards the tail end of June and brings with it some requested features like
a field of view slider, that I know will make some people happy
Also in this update will be the ability to pickup weapons and armour that you find in the world
Instances will indicate the type of instance you are about to enter when at the door (Solo, Group)
New daily PVP quests for kill enenmy classes
I’m not going to list them all here as there are quite a lot, my favourites are
“Fixed an issue where reflected projectiles would sometimes create a mirror image of themselves that did no damage.”
“Skeevers are no longer invisible while in their idle animation.”
The Longer-Term updates tells us “Further, we’re going to allow dungeons to level to the group leader.” I wasn’t alone in remarking on the lack of such functionality at launch and this level adjustment functionality will hopefully be the first in the mentoring area.
Over the weekend I played a good deal of Elder Scrolls Online, I have two main characters, one is a Nightblade and part of my Static group with FlyinPinkMunki & DokChaos which we play on a weekly basis on the Aldmeri Dominion, this toon is around level 14. My other main is a Sorcerer on the Daggerfall Covenant who alongside my wife’s Sorcerer is around level 22, we are hitting the Stormhaven content and having a right blast.
I have the same issue with War Thunder that I experienced with World of Warplanes in that I can play about 3 matches and I’m done. I’m not sure what it is that causes the problem but it’s enough to make me close the client and fire up another game.
After reading Wilhelms post about his CIV 5 games, I really fancied going back to the title. When I bought it originally I think it was via Steam sale plus I had a stack of other titles on the go and never really gave it the attention I wanted to.
Of course customising your civilization makes for laughable moments when prompted with dialogues for Welsh of The Trolls.
I’d also completely forgot how awesome the Soundtrack to the game once I’d remembered that I have it via Steam I promptly uploaded to my Cloud player for consumption at work.
Single player games often have many avenues if approach, if you play the game in a certain way you get an achievement, for example not killing any enemies, not losing any team members or completing on a certainly difficulty. What to play in a different fashion then you just head to the main menu and click New Game and try your hand at a different path, making the polar opposite choices to your last play through and most of the time this will earn a different achievement.
Massive Multi-player Online games are strange as this re-rolling only happens at the players choice and generally not to try something slightly different on the same class. This is where Classes come in as being unique in that they offer a different wedge of the skill pie, but players don’t generally want to roll a new character to make a different skill selection.
Of course the investment of time can’t be compared to your usual single player title in the same manner.
The danger with skill selection is that’s it’s easy to pick a power that doesn’t work well for your build or perhaps in a group that power becomes obsolete. In Single player games your next skill point is just around the corner, yet with MMO games it could be a day or so away.
Enter the Respec.
This is achieved differently depending on the MMO, for some it’s an externally purchasable item using real world money or some cash-shop equivalent, certain games may not even offer the service.
I tend to prefer the respecs that are done in in the game doesn’t tend to break the immersion.
The Elder Scrolls Online lets you undo all skill points that have been spent, which depending on your level and how many skills you have, it costs 100gp for each skill, so 50 skill points will cost you 5000gp.
The City of Heroes\ Villains games achieved this in-game, Terra Volta Re-specification Trial for heroes, or Tree of Thorns Re-specification Trial for villains. These Trails could only be used to earn a respec 3 times. But they were also handed out after power set changes and you earnt them via the Veteran Rewards program. In a much later update you could be bought from the market ingame.
Star Wars The Old Republic allowed you to respec once a week for free, more could cost you credits.
Planetside allowed you to unlearn a skill once every 24 hours, additionally if the skill selected had any dependant skills those were also unlearned and the points freed up. After major skill changes full respecs were given out to player for use at any time.
For reference their are games that I have played that don’t offer a respec, The Secret World, Eve Online, Planetside 2 and Guild Wars stand out as being games that never really needed the functionality or it would undermine the mechanics of the game if implemented.