Elder Scrolls Online was released back in April 2014. It is a B2P Model with purchasable DLC. To celebrate 7 years, they are currently giving a “free game trial” to everyone between March 31 – April 13. This means, you have access to the base game along with 500 free crowns.
Crowns is the cash shop currency purchased by real money, it is used for gacha boxes, DLC content, pets and mounts alike. While you receive 500 crowns during this “free trial”, it’s not enough to buy much except the starter pack as most items are over 1500 crowns.
Elder Scrolls Online is a Action Combat MMORPG, however, the controls are simple which is your mouse buttons gives two attacks and hotkeys. It isn’t a sophisticated action combat game such as Black Desert Online, Blade and Soul or Vindictus.
So here comes the million dollar question, is Elder Scrolls Online still worth playing in 2021 or should we find another game invest time in playing?
I jumped right into this MMORPG, putting in over 55 hours during this Free Play period. As I saw, it still has a healthy 20k population base on average.
The combat for this action combat is pretty smooth. Skills and animation flows from one skill to another, at times it does feel a little slow paced. It is not at the level of Black Desert Online, but it is well above average in the market. I would put it just below Blade and Soul in terms of the Combat System alone.
F2P Friendly ★★★☆☆
While the Cash Shop does not have any gear or enchantment you can purchase directly, so I wouldn’t call the game P2W. However, some gear are locked behind a paywall due to only accessible when purchased certain DLC only. This can pose an issue to players who only purchased the base game. However, majority of the gear are tradeable which does soften the blow.
I have never given anything lower than a 1★ and I really don’t want to start, but ESO’s UI system, is just completely terrible and was super close to being a 0★. One of the worse UI designs by far I have ever encountered. I rather be spammed by Chinese notifications all day then the current UI system ESO has. It feels a direct port from a Console UI and then dumbed a bit more down. It’s not only frustrating to have a complete overlay when looking at your EXP bar, map, inventory or character stats. I also don’t need a random keystroke dismounting you when you are checking something.
While the game is supported by addons, they are limited to what you can really do and unless the addon redesigns the entire UI. I had to get an inventory addon to turn my inventory into a grid based as opposed to the stock list version. This was the 2nd deal breaker for me which was cutting it very close to quitting and this review never materializing.
I am not a fan of the gore dark medieval base art style, but doesn’t mean it’s not good. The art is beautiful in it’s own right but just not something for me. As a game that is 7 years old, it has aged pretty well at this point, although, I do believe it needs to be re-touched.
While my main reason to play games is to PVP, lots of PVP, and what attracted me to even try ESO was the PVP content it proposed. However, after spending so long levelling, I jumped in a battlegrounds match and it was not what I thought it was at all. It was mages spamming 1 AOE skill, warriors spamming some cleave skill and Dragon Knights spamming fire breath, over and over. That’s not fun at all. While story mode levelling was fun to a degree, I just can’t continue if end-game PVP is going to be like this. With the 150 hours as the average rate you need to play to reach max level, I am not too sure if I am ready to invest that time in to be disappointed.
The game feels like it has so much potential with your builds, but after doing a bit more research, they are just a few skills everyone will always take as they are the cream of the crop. Feels like, they are very little diversity. This was the main deal breaker for me.