In an interview with The Official Xbox Magazine, Bethesda VP of Marketing Pete Hines stated that Bethesda is currently in talks with Microsoft to remove the requirement to pay for Xbox Live Gold in order to play The Elder Scrolls Online.
“We feel like most people such as yourself currently pay that subscription not to pay a game, but to play all games online.
“So in that sense, when I’m playing Call of Duty online I don’t feel like I’m paying my monthly Xbox Live sub for Call of Duty – I’m just paying it because that’s a thing that I do, and whatever game I’m playing at the time is the one that benefits.
“Having said that,” he went on, “we have been in talks with Microsoft about that very thing, and seeing whether or not there’s any room to change their minds about that, for folks who are only playing The Elder Scrolls Online and don’t want to pay for an Xbox Live Gold subscription, just to pay for the Elder Scrolls Online.”
Currently, Microsoft hasn’t budged on this requirement, but that doesn’t mean the folks responsible for ESO will stop trying anytime soon.
“The answer right now is that’s the way it works, but it’s something that we’re aware of and we keep pushing on, to see if there’s something that can be done. We’ll let you know if there’s movement there.”
Bethesda is facing the same situation with Sony’s next-gen platform, as ESO will also require a PS+ membership to play the game. While Sony has been flexible by stating some MMOs will not require the PS+ sub, (DC Universe Online, Planetside 2), ESO doesn’t fall in that list. In a statement to UsGamer, a Bethesda employee confirmed that Bethesda is facing a similar situation with the sub fee for PS4.
At least we can hang out hats knowing that while the developers over at Zenimax want us to pay for the content, they do not want us to pay twice. Stay tuned to ESOTR as we’ll keep you updated as news comes out regarding these developments!