In an interview with EuroGamer.net, Creature Combat Designer Maria Aliprando gave a few more details on some aspects of The Elder Scrolls Online that have been a little vague so far, including Master dungeons, PvP, and becoming Emperor (and even a small hint about the Thieves Guild).
She also spoke about the inclusion of the first-person perspective, and what they went through to make it work. She noted that they really do read fan feedback on forums, so be sure to continue sharing your constructive feedback with the team to potentially get what YOU want in the game.
“Originally, we weren’t going to do it (first-person view) for technical reasons. In the traditional, non-social Elder Scrolls games, you don’t really have the problem of monsters being behind you. Everything is spawned in front of you. So we never had to approach the challenge of, ‘What happens if somebody attacks you from behind? How do you see it? What do you see on your screen? Does your screen shake, is there an icon on your screen?’ Things like that. So we thought that we didn’t want to go that route because we didn’t want it to be “gamey” in a way. Through the feedback we were re-inspired to go back and redo that first-person. We had an old prototype that just wasn’t working out, so we went back, redid the prototype, so what we have in now is really what we’re going with. We still have a couple more animations to do; we’re doing high-res textures for our weapons (we have low-res on them right now), so you might see some footage of the weapons just not as clean as you would expect, and we’ll be doing much higher textures on those as well.”
She also spoke of the importance placed on making the game run smoothly on all systems at full FPS, whether in first or third-person, striving to make the experience an Elder Scrolls game first and foremost, as well as making it a “modern social experience.” They want the game to be Elder Scrolls that you can play with your friends, and make it tactical combat, not just rotation-based.
When it comes to endgame, ZeniMax Online Studios is very confident they have found a perfect solution in their PvP, Master Dungeons, and 50+ content.
One of the big draws to PvP will be the possibility of becoming Emperor. Be sure to watch the video for her full explanation, but basically, you can become Emperor by earning alliance points through killing opponents or healing allies. When your alliance holds all the keeps in Cyrodiil, the person with the most alliance points will be crowned Emperor. As Emperor, you will have access to a new skill line, unique to only the person who is Emperor. These will effectively make you the most powerful player on the battlefield, and provide alliance-wide bonuses as well. If you lose your Emperorship (she did not go into specifics about how you lose it), you will keep the skills you have unlocked through that, but they will be greatly reduced in effect.
When it comes to Master Dungeons, she said the game will launch with 16 dungeons and six Master Dungeons. These are dungeons that you return to after clearing them earlier in the game, but with slightly redesigned layouts, different monsters and bosses to fight, and different loot to obtain. This gives some replayability to an otherwise repetitive process, and though she didn’t confirm it, it is probably safe to assume more Master Dungeons will be added in future content updates.
Maria says in the video that by the time you hit level 50 you’ll have approximately 30% of your skills maxed out. You will then be able to hop into one of the other territories and do their story content, continuing to level up skills, and then finally you can go through the third faction’s content as well. She said each alliance’s content is between 120-150 hours, depending on how you play it, so that is potentially 360-450 hours of Elder Scrolls content for just one character.
She even hinted at a Justice System, saying that right now you can steal a loaf of break off the table and there are no consequences. But they are working on a system that will somehow implement consequences for those types of actions, and maybe even tie them into the Thieves Guild content (which will be added in after launch).
She said a lot more in the video that is definitely worth hearing for yourself, so be sure to check it out, and be sure to stay tuned to Elder Scrolls Off the Record for all the latest news, information, and our breakdown of it all.