The Elder Scrolls Online PC Game | PCGamesN

The Elder Scrolls Online developer hit with layoffs now that the game "runs smoothly"

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The Elder Scrolls Online developer hit with layoffs now that the game "runs smoothly"

The Elder Scrolls Online developer, ZeniMax Online, was hit with layoffs this morning. While unfortunate for those affected, Bethesda’s Pete Hines assures that these changes are down to the game no longer needing as large a workforce and isn’t down to problems at the company. 

“As is the norm for games of this type, we had ramped up a large workforce to develop a game of vast scale, and ramped up our customer service to handle the expected questions and community needs of The Elder Scrolls Online at launch," Hines said. "Now that we are nearly 6 months post launch, we have a thriving online community in a game that runs smoothly."

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Gotta have wraith: Zenimax to give pets as rewards to Elder Scrolls Online subscribers

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Gotta have wraith: Zenimax to give pets as rewards to Elder Scrolls Online subscribers

The pre-release conversation around The Elder Scrolls Online was all about that subscription - a monthly tithe of the kind so many other prominent developers had roundly condemned. 

But launch came and went, and it seemed there were more than enough Elder Scrolls Online subscribers. Now, Zenimax Online intend to sustain momentum not only with September’s Update 4, but with a series of conspicuous rewards for subscribers to flaunt all round Tamriel.

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Want to go higher? The Elder Scrolls Online update 4 will introduce Upper Craglorn

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Want to go higher? The Elder Scrolls Online update 4 will introduce Upper Craglorn

To stop veterans from becoming degenerate drunks or tiresome bores who do nothing but send people to sleep with tales of long forgotten deeds, ZeniMax Online added the veteran adventure zone of Craglorn to The Elder Scrolls Online. Those who completed its quests, delves and trials are no doubt wondering what’s next. With Craglorn conquered, what other realm is filled with things needing a good smacking?

But hold your horses (or silt striders), you’re not finished with Craglorn yet. There’s still Upper Craglorn to get through. And it’s coming this September with Update 4. 

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The Elder Scrolls Online begins its European megaserver migration today

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The Elder Scrolls Online begins its European megaserver migration today

It’s warm enough now - but once the temperature starts to drop, orcs, redguards and cat-faced khajiit will travel south to Frankfurt, where the heat from larger datacenters is perfect for nesting. The great Elder Scrolls Online European server migration will begin today at 9am EDT / 1pm BST, and be finished by 5pm EDT / 10pm BST this evening.

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What to expect from The Elder Scrolls Online's daedra-controlled Imperial City

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What to expect from The Elder Scrolls Online's daedra-controlled Imperial City

The Elder Scrolls Online is still a young whippersnapper - and you can see what our Nick thought about it in his Elder Scrolls Online review - but ZeniMax Online are already thinking about the future. At QuakeCon, the team held a panel teasing the audience with what’s to come for the fantasy MMO. 

One of the big things is the centre of the titanic PvP war that’s consumed the Imperial province of Cyrodiil. At the heart of the region sits the Imperial City - that place you probably spent a lot of time in while playing Oblivion - and the for the time being, it’s impenetrable. But that will change. 

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Elder Scrolls Online apparently has more than 750,000 subscribers

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Elder Scrolls Online apparently has more than 750,000 subscribers

The Elder Scrolls Online has had a lot of problems since launch - duplication bugsgold farmers, and stuck NPCs - but apparently that’s not stopped it from racking more than 750,000 subscribers. According to a report from SuperData, the game boasts 772,374 paying accounts.

That number should only grow with it’s recent move to the Steam storefront.

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The Elder Scrolls Online is coming to Steam today

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The Elder Scrolls Online is coming to Steam today

So, let’s assume you haven’t played The Elder Scrolls Online before today. What can we tell you? It’s okay. Very solid, like a dining table. But equally like a dining table, not something you’d want to spend an awful lot of time with unless you’ve got friends around.

Elder Scrolls Online patches have expanded its range of dungeons, but done nothing to improve on its back-and-forth quests. Try The Elder Scrolls Online for yourself on Steam, by all means. It’s absolutely fine.

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Digital colours don't run: The Elder Scrolls Online Update 3 will be a “guild extravaganza”

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Digital colours don't run: The Elder Scrolls Online Update 3 will be a “guild extravaganza”

“Update 3 is almost here," say Zenimax, “and is sure to impress your guild!" 

Time was, impressing your guild simply meant barrelling through a series of quests in your off-time from being the Grey Fox. Now, though, the Elder Scrolls is a massively multiplayer affair. From Update 3 onwards, that means flying the colours of your group at all times - whether through armour dyes or bibs emblazoned with their emblem.

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Elder Scrolls Online gains an FOV slider, lootable weapon racks and a Veteran crypt

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Elder Scrolls Online gains an FOV slider, lootable weapon racks and a Veteran crypt

The Elder Scrolls Online certainly looks like Tamriel, but one of the first signs we weren’t in Skyrim anymore came with the realisation that every bowl and bottle was nailed in place. Yes, all that power needed to be re-routed to support umpteen players on a server at once, yada yada. But no explanation could make up for the lack of physics-enabled bread rolls to bounce about the place.

ESO Update 2 is a step in the right direction: those ubiquitous weapon and armour racks just begging to be ransacked? They now can be.

But that’s not the headline news for the unfortunate subset of players left nauseous by fixed fields-of-view. They’ll be more interested in the new FOV slider for ESO’s first-person mode; something Nick desperately wanted in his Elder Scrolls Online review.

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Elder Scrolls Online devs rework its endgame, "want it to be more exciting to get to level 50"

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Elder Scrolls Online devs rework its endgame, "want it to be more exciting to get to level 50"

The Zenimax team are feeling a little downtrodden. Our Nick’s Elder Scrolls Online review probably didn’t help. But they’re living with it.

“I know sometimes there is as much criticism as there is praise out there in internet-land for the game," they write. “But that shows a passionate fan base that cares about the game, which is very important to acknowledge."

Acknowledge, and address. Zenimax plan to start with the game’s Veteran system - and provide more compelling things to do in Tamriel past level 50.

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The Elder Scrolls Online's first Adventure Zone, Craglorn, has been opened up to the veteran masses

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The Elder Scrolls Online's first Adventure Zone, Craglorn, has been opened up to the veteran masses

The Elder Scrolls Online’s first major piece of post-launch content is now live, after two months since launch and our pretty disappointing Elder Scrolls review. Veteran adventurers can now explore the new region of Craglorn - the first Adventure Zone - where they can wander around new delves (hopefully finding fewer players camping spawns), participate in a new storyline and dabble in the 12-player trials. 

While ZeniMax’s focus for the rickety MMO has been end game content, there’s also been a number of bug fixes and tweaks across the board. 

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MMOs are stagnating and need to stop relying on Pavlovian trickery

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MMOs are stagnating and need to stop relying on Pavlovian trickery

The modern MMO is a curious dichotomy. It’s a risky genre in flux: subscriptions are out, free-to-play with microtransactions is in, and the threat of declining player retention looms over the games like a giant blade waiting to fall. Yet MMOs struggle to do anything new. They go through the same song and dance, aping design and features from games covered in cobwebs. 

It’s a genre that should be so broad that few MMOs look alike, but barring a few exceptions like PlanetSide 2 and EVE Online, they all share so much DNA they could be the product of rutting cousins. When you fire up a new MMO, the sense of “been there, done that" is so pervasive that it begs the question: “why are we doing this again?"

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Elder Scrolls Online patch unsticks stuck NPCs, makes a hard knock life harder for werewolves

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Elder Scrolls Online patch unsticks stuck NPCs, makes a hard knock life harder for werewolves

Do you find that the good people of Tamriel run away from you mid-conversation? Or stand rigid, as if pinned in place by poor pathfinding? There are two possible explanations.

a) You’re a werewolf. The world is terrified of you, and this latest patch is only going to make things worse.

b) It’s just the bugs. In which case, this latest patch is only going to make things better; Nick was affected by a load of the pesky things his Elder Scrolls review?

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How to become emperor: The Elder Scrolls Online's first king spills his secrets

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How to become emperor: The Elder Scrolls Online's first king spills his secrets

The Elder Scrolls Online’s centrepiece is its PvP, which makes a huge, open battleground of Oblivion’s Cyrodiil. And right in the middle of that, in the White Gold Tower in the nucleus of the Imperial City, sits an emperor thousands of other players have put there.

How does one do it? Become emperor? Not through poison, persuasion or gunpowder plot, says the Elder Scrolls Online’s first king.

“The best advice I can give to anyone who aspires to be emperor is to join a group or a guild."

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Elder Scrolls Online devs talk absent Thieves Guild and Dark Brotherhood quests: "We aren't trying to be evasive"

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Elder Scrolls Online devs talk absent Thieves Guild and Dark Brotherhood quests: "We aren't trying to be evasive"

The Elder Scrolls Online’s stealth quests are disastrous. Its one-way-in, one-way-out houses are populated by instantly hostile guards to sneak attack. Pray they don’t respawn before you’re done rummaging in the quest-marked hotspots.

Rubbish. But there’s hope in the shadows - Zenimax have said their first words on the missing Thieves Guild and Dark Brotherhood questlines since launch, where were sorely missed in Nick's Elder Scrolls review.

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ZeniMax Online says sorry with five days of game time for The Elder Scrolls Online players

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ZeniMax Online says sorry with five days of game time for The Elder Scrolls Online players

The Elder Scrolls Online has had a rocky start. Broken quests, a plethora of bugs, gold spammers and black market shenanigans, it’s a bit off-putting. “The Elder Scrolls Online is frustrating. It has moments of sheer class, but they’re consistently tainted by bugs," said Nick in his Elder Scrolls review a couple of weeks ago. 

ZeniMax Online says it’s dealing with the problems and that far fewer players are complaining about bugs, though that might just be because a lot of players have fled. The developer wants to thank those that have put up with all this guff by offering five days of extra game time. 

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Elder Scrolls Online patch 1.0.6 takes the fight to gold farming bots

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Elder Scrolls Online patch 1.0.6 takes the fight to gold farming bots

Zenimax have deployed their sixth patch in their effort to step up the fight against an endless torrent of bots and gold spammers, while also squashing some bugs in the process; which are a huge problem in my Elder Scrolls review. Highlights of Patch 1.0.6 include a fix for Nightblades becoming stuck, the implementation of timers on loot acquisition from delve bosses and cash on delivery parcels actually requiring cash to accept (instead of netting the item for free).

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