So now that the NDA has been lifted, I can talk about Fight Club...er...Elder Scrolls Online. I've been in nearly every beta session since November, so I've gotten a pretty good feel for what the game is going to be like. This weekend, March 14-16, is the final large-scale beta before Early Access starts. Since the NDA is gone, I'm going to grab some screenies and try to throw them up here with my thoughts.
EverQuest 2 is my MMO of choice. Though I do occasionally put some time in on The Secret World, Champions Online, or whatever the F2P MMO of the month is, I always come back to EQ2. My first real MMO was the original EQ (ignoring a horrible first experience with Ultima Online...*shudder*), so I have a special attachment to the world. Cheski once asked me why play a game that's ten years old. Well, for starters there's a ton of content. I mean an epic TON of content to explore. The graphics aren't next gen, but they actually hold up...and some of the environments are just plain beautiful. Sony is going to be switching up their subscription model soon, which means you get premium access to all their titles (Original EQ, EQ2, Planetside 2, Dragon's Prophet, DC Universe Online, and the upcoming EQ Next) for a single monthly fee. Why play? I'm paying $15 a month to play HOURS AND HOURS of content, instead of $60 each month for a shiny, brand new title that I might be done with after 10-15 hours (*cough cough* Bioshock Infinite *cough cough*).
So why go into a dissertation on EverQuest 2 in a post about Elder Scrolls Online? Look at Star Wars: The Old Republic. It, too, had a big name to live up to. It, too, had a massive budget, big name voice actors, YEARS and YEARS of development time. It, too, had huge competition from WoW, EQ2, Guild Wars, etc. Within a couple months of release, it was reviled by the gaming community at large. I'm just saying...ESO had better be something ultra-special if it wants to compete.
My review to come this weekend.