I generally ignore game reviews, but now that people with no financial incentive to mislead others have had a substantial amount of time to play Elder Scrolls Online, reviews which are at least theoretically unbiased are starting to come out. Judging from what I've seen, the general opinion can be summarized as "an inferior, money-sucking, half-completed beta of Guild Wars 2". A few I've looked over:

Shoddycast podcast review & written review (bemused)

MMO fan (generally positive)

Gamespot (yawn)

TES gamer (irate)

Angry Joe review (take a guess)

Francis (lololol)

The upside is that it's becoming more and more likely ESO will become free to play in the near future.

Edit- By the way, the final ESO boss fight can be viewed here. Spoilers, obviously.

3 comments

Comment from: snowmane [Member]  
Damon

We do need to bear in mind that the game is just a month old, from the date of release. Every new game, even World of Warcraft, Guild Wars, and so forth felt empty initially. I’m sure the game will improve as the continent is fleshed out, fully created, and content is added and fixed.

Of course, it doesn’t help that The Elder Scrolls Online bears the “Elder Scrolls” name, meaning that it will always be tragically buggy at launch like Skyrim, it will be only half fixed and will be still broken in places when the game is patched as much as they can, and… Oh, what the hell… You might be right, M.E.

04/29/14 @ 22:31
Comment from: Jeancey [Visitor]
Jeancey

Honestly, I don’t understand where you found these people who did hear reviews. Every person I know who has played t live game has said it is leaps and bounds above other MMOs. Will there be bugs? Of course! People always forget that WoWs launch was so awful that they had to offer weeks of free playing time there are half as many game/progression breaking bugs as any other MMO launch I’ve ever eem a part of, and I played WoW, SWTOR, STO, LOTRO, Everquest 2, and several F2P MMOs. I simply don’t understand the issues people have with ESO. The reviews I have read from respectable publications (i.e. Not crazy random people on the internet) have been extremely positive.

04/29/14 @ 23:35
Comment from: minor edits [Member]  
minor edits

As the “MMO fan” points out, most of the “respectable” reviews, like the one from PC Gamer, have been formulated based on a relatively limited experience with the game. Whose opinion is going to be accurate, someone who spent 5-6 hours actually playing the game, or someone who spent 100+ hours with it? And, like I said, his opinion of it was generally positive.

And as I alluded to, they are not free from bias. When a major game publisher releases a high-profile multi-platform blockbuster with a $200 million budget, and their ad money is keeping your “respectable” publications in business, logic dictates that there is pressure to view the product in a favorable light, and my personal experiences with trusting such reviews is evidence enough for me that their “respectable” opinions should be taken with near-lethal doses of salt.

“Francis” was included because I found it hilarious (and it was made as a joke). The only other review I provided which might be considered a “crazy random” is “TES gamer", and I provided that video because I felt the creator eloquently and succinctly explained issues I had with the game based on my experience with the beta, as well as other concerns which are corroborated by some of the other reviewers I provided. I felt no need to discriminate against him merely because he wasn’t on someone’s payroll.

Angry Joe, Shoddycast, and Gamespot are certainly not “crazy random people". And while they all had many nice things to say about the game, they all seemed to agree that the game was average. The Elder Scrolls deserves better than average.

05/01/14 @ 17:43