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Default Elder Scrolls Online - Should It Go Free-to-Play?

July 19th, 2014, 14:46
IGN wonders if The Elder Scrolls Online should go Free-to-Play, and debates the pros & cons of doing so. So what do you all think are they right about the MMO game?

From the moment it was announced the next entry in The Elder Scrolls series would be an MMO, the prospect of the game demanding a subscription fee has been an intensely debated topic. Huge swathes of people proclaimed ESO was dead in the water if it launched requiring a monthly fee, while a smaller subset quietly countered that such a move was needed for the title to succeed. When it eventually was confirmed that, yes, the game would require a monthly subscription, the debate seemed to intensify rather than lessen, and has continued to do so ever since launch in the face of console delays and a mixed reaction to endgame design.

The truth is, I don’t know if ESO will ditch its sub fee. No-one does. Steering toward the issue in a recent interview with creative director Paul Sage I was told “no comment”, so unfortunately I’ve no more official insight than you guys. But as Star Wars: The Old Republic’s first crack at its free-to-play conversion shows us, such a change is far from straightforward. To that end I spoke to Trion Worlds CEO Scott Hartsman and Gameforge CEO Carsten Van Husen - two gentlemen with a wealth of experience in both MMOs and F2P conversions - to find out whether ditching the sub fee really is the right path for The Elder Scrolls Online to take, or if it’s a fallacy that such a move can change the game’s fortunes.
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July 19th, 2014, 14:46
Who cares at this point? It's a boring game that has made TES world seem small and petty.
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July 19th, 2014, 15:07
It's an interesting article from an industry perspective. The article doesn't focus too much on ESO, rather its financial direction compared (at the time) to the direction of the industry and where the MMO industry currently sits in terms of subscription vs micro transaction. I think most of us are aware of the micro transaction situation and that appears to be the future for MMOs (and everything else).

I noticed ESO just arrive on Steam is now available at a sale price of $30, compared to the launch price of around $90 or $100 (in my region). While that doesn't directly relate to the subscription/micro transaction debate, it might be an indication of how well ESO is doing financially overall.
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July 19th, 2014, 15:26
The real question for me would be : will the ditching make it become a better game ? Sadly I fear the response is quite obvious.
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July 19th, 2014, 15:28
Supposedly, they had ~775K subscribers in June - which isn't bad at all.

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/20…cribers-report

They have a very impressive plan for its future, with more content than I can remember any other MMO having in such a short time.

This is before the console release.

The future might not be as bright as some of us were hoping, but it's looking much better than I feared.

The haters who know little or nothing about the game are probably annoyed with this, but there'll be another big MMO to hate soon enough, I'm sure.
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July 19th, 2014, 15:31
Originally Posted by Ovenall View Post
Who cares at this point? It's a boring game that has made TES world seem small and petty.
Everyone cares.

What needs to go free in that game is horses. No need to change anything else.
No, I still won't play it.

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July 19th, 2014, 17:04
I personally can only say from experience, the game does not have enough value for a monthly fee. And it needs a year of serious work; I quit because I had the feeling not playing ESO in the ideal shape it could be. I am sure to try it out in a year again.
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July 19th, 2014, 18:51
There will always be a place in the genre for sub fees. As they mention at the end of the article, whether or not people are willing to pay it is dictated by the game quality. They should look to address concerns of current costumers before thinking about overhauling the payment model imo.
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July 19th, 2014, 18:54
Played it for a few weeks. It's not that it's a terrible MMO, but the entire time I played the MMO experience seemed like a zillion MMO experiences I've had before. If you're an MMO fanatic or never really got too into an MMO until ESO, I can see the draw with this game.

But for me, I've had enough of go there, get 10 of this or go into that dungeon and kill the bad boss. Never reached the end game, or even came close to that, so I can't comment on end-game stuff. I did enjoy the lore of the quests, which I thought were at least several 'rungs' better than the what you'd find in WoW.

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July 19th, 2014, 21:03
What's so funny about all this is that nobody ever mentions Final Fantasy 14. It's a sub-based game that does phenomenally well (after its revamp, at any rate), and continues to do well. It does well because it's really well made - they put serious thought into making the game fun the second time around, and it shows. The critics of ESO's sub model don't seem to have torn FF14 apart for it.

Like everyone has said, F2P won't fix a crappy game. Crappy games are crappy, and while I haven't yet played it, many reviewers say it's boring and uninspired. I am curious, though, and I might be willing to pick it up if there was a really good sale. The ONE factor that would keep me from doing so is doubt over whether it'll go F2P. If I knew for sure they never would, I might break down and try it.
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July 19th, 2014, 21:26
Nothing still tops Everquest for an mmo. Almost 20 yrs later and companies still crank out mmo's that just flat out suck, like Elder Scrolls. Stick to what you are somewhat decent at, and let your betters run the mmo market.
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July 20th, 2014, 00:20
Originally Posted by Ovenall View Post
Who cares at this point?
All those playing it …
It's a boring game that has made TES world seem small and petty.
… who don't find it boring?

pibbur who likes it and hopes it remains a subscription fee game

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July 20th, 2014, 16:52
I still like it and am still subscribed. However,because of how busy my summers are' I have no time to play and the news is more intriguing then any game for me right now so when I get home I watch that instead of playing games.
I will tell you that it has been fairly interesting watching my wife get sucked into it because its her first mmo and she plays it nonstop with her mother online.
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July 20th, 2014, 23:15
TESO makes you realize how much of an achievement Skyrim was even with all it's flaws.

As some have mentioned, the success or failure of TESO is extremely relevant to the future of big, open world single player RPG's which most readers here care about.
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July 21st, 2014, 01:27
Originally Posted by Reyla View Post
TESO makes you realize how much of an achievement Skyrim was even with all it's flaws.

As some have mentioned, the success or failure of TESO is extremely relevant to the future of big, open world single player RPG's which most readers here care about.
It's true…so many of us want open world games and there aren't quite as many coming out as I'd like to see, personally.

An achievement Skyrim might have been, but it was sooo broken when it came out. Modders fixed most of its problems before Bethesda did. Bethesda kinda drags its feet on fixing bugs and I think that's always been the case…
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July 21st, 2014, 11:25
Shrug, it'll stay sub as long as Zenimax thinks it's profitable enough that way, and if they don't feel it is anymore it'll move to F2P.
Just like Rift or any other F2P conversion game.
I expect Zenimax to be big enough to make their own decisions.

And nah I decided I won't play it either way, I was never a fan of taking the TES series multiplayer anyways.
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