Category: "Elder Scrolls"

AKB's Auto Korrect Blog: 20th Anniversary Blues

  11:15:00 pm, by AKB   , 965 words  
Viewed 16613 times since 08/19/14
Categories: Elder Scrolls, UESP, Rants
What it all comes down to

You know what I hate? Complaining. Yes, I understand the intense irony of that claim, but it's absolutely true. I know that most of my blog posts are nothing but barely concealed rants about the smallest details relating to the series, ranging from complaining about swimming mechanics to lengthy tirades over a simple question, but that's not the kind of person I truly like to be. I don't like complaining about things I don't like, I think it's unhealthy for the mind to be focused on the negative. So in a daring move to free myself from these corrupting impulses, I spent the last few months meditating on any blog topic that would not revolve around some niggling little issue. So after that prolonged absence, I have returned with more minor issues to drone on about. Today, specifically on my mixed feelings about the twentieth anniversary of the Elder Scrolls franchise. See the rest after the break.

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News Roundup

  08:59:00 pm, by   , 168 words  
Viewed 11152 times since 08/15/14
Categories: Elder Scrolls, News

The new dye system seems to be receiving a generally positive reception from fans.

Some payment complications have arisen for ESO subscribers which may force some to remain offline for a short time. ZeniMax is working to address the issue and has issued assurances that all affected players will get their full 30 days' worth of playing time.

Update 4 has been promised for September (see the video below). Players will be able to continue the saga of Craglorn, this time in Upper Craglorn, where they will find a new Trial, group challenge, quests, difficulty modes, and the new Dragonstar Arena.

At Raptr, a PC online gaming site which publishes the top 20 games their roughly 22 million users are playing every month, ESO dropped from #8 to #20 from May to June, evidently due to the release of the new Wildstar, and fell off the list in July. TES V: Skyrim has shown the opposite trend: it was not in the top 20 in May, then jumped from #19 to #14 from June to July.

SuperData: Over 750,000 ESO subscribers

  04:30:00 pm, by   , 119 words  
Viewed 18287 times since 07/18/14
Categories: Elder Scrolls, News

According to SuperData, there have been 772,374 subscribers to ESO as of June. If all of those subscribers renewed their subscriptions beyond the first free month, Bethesda and ZeniMax would take in $11 million a month. However, the number of subscribers who have opted to keep paying for the game has not been disclosed.

The report also notes that ESO is challenging perceived market trends, as subscription revenue from MMOs has been decreasing since 2010, but they speculate that the influence of ESO has already caused other new releases to embrace a subscription-based model, and there will likely be more of them in the future.

It remains unclear whether Bethesda and ZeniMax will maintain the subscription fee, but the online debate continues.

Review of The Hero's Guides to The Elder Scrolls Online

  02:03:00 am, by Alarra   , 711 words  
Viewed 12372 times since 07/02/14
Categories: Games, Elder Scrolls

 The Elder Scrolls Online team has recently announced that from now to July 6th, if you buy The Hero’s Guides to The Elder Scrolls Online from the Bethesda store, you’ll get one free month of gameplay of Elder Scrolls Online with it.   The Hero’s Guides is a set containing three lorebooks and a small portfolio that has Alliance War art and the copy’s number (from the limited run of 10,000) in it.  I recently purchased it and read them, so I’m reviewing them (spoiler-free) to give you an idea of whether you think it’s worth the steep price. 

 Agents and Reagents: The Bounty of Mundus – The journal of Gargrell Sorick, an apprentice at the Wayrest Apothecary.  Apart from the introduction and last few pages, the book follows the same format: illustrations of the different alchemy ingredients, listing their effects as seen in-game and some extra background info on them (such as how to harvest them).  I rate this as my second-favorite of the three.  Mostly this book will appeal to those really interested in lore and those who might want to use a little background info for fanfiction or RPing.

Gathering Force: Arms and Armor of Tamriel - A book describing the armor and weapons used by each race, written by Longinus Attius, an Imperial Fighters Guild hall steward.   Like the first book, it follows a set pattern: a color picture of a champion from each race, and a couple pages with sketches of the race’s armor and text describing what materials they use and how they’re designed.  Also like the first book, this will only appeal to those who are super-interested in these little details of the world.  This was my least favorite of the three books.  Though it has more named characters than the first one, they have no depth whatsoever and in most cases aren’t even mentioned apart from their picture.  At least in the alchemist book we get an idea of the personalities of the three major characters.

Kyne’s Challenge: A Hunter’s Companion – The tale of a group of mostly Nord hunters and their adventure across Tamriel, as they attempt to fight as many different beasts as they can in order to pass along the information to more inexperienced Fighters Guild members.   This is easily the best of the three books.  It’s an actual narrative rather than a collection of information, it is longer, has deeper and more engaging characters, and has some interesting plot twists along the way.  It’s definitely an enjoyable read.

Overall, the quality of the materials of the books is pretty good: they have soft faux-leathery covers, gilded or deckled pages, ribbon bookmarks, and so forth, with very nice illustrations.  However, all in all, the content of the three books is nothing spectacular.  The Kyne book was a good read, far better than the others, but the other two books were something of a disappointment, and the Kyne book alone does not make up for those.  It was interesting, however, how some of the things in these guides tied into each other and also into the Improved Emperor’s Guide to Tamriel that came with the Imperial Edition of ESO (for example, Flaccus Terentius, the author of the Emperor’s Guide, makes an appearance in the Kyne book).  In my opinion they did fit the “Elder Scrolls” feel, more so than the two Greg Keyes novels, I thought, and they did provide some extra background information.  However, if you’re just looking for a fun story, I’d point you toward the Greg Keyes novels (The Infernal City and Lord of Souls) instead.

Final verdict:  If you’re really into the lore and background information, and can afford it, it might be worth a look, and now would be a good time to do it, with the 1-month-of-ESO deal.  I like having them – books and Elder Scrolls are two of my favorite things – but I would’ve been far more satisfied if it would have cost a more reasonable amount.  Despite the good quality of the items, the content in them is not worth the $100 price tag.

If you’re interested, head on over to the wiki - I’ve recently finished the pages for the books, and they contain detailed synopses in case you wish to know exactly what happens in each one.

The Selectives Lorecast

  12:02:00 am, by   , 92 words  
Viewed 9834 times since 06/30/14
Categories: Elder Scrolls

This recently-started podcast series focuses on the finer points of TES lore. The first focused on discussing the Unreliable Narrator, that annoying/wonderful little dilemma which makes editing the lore section absolute hell.

The second was just uploaded. I've only just started it myself, but special guests include Lady Nerevar of TIL and Michael Kirkbride. Topics include Lorkhan - my favorite topic in the lore! I'm on the edge of my seat ... mainly because I'm looking forward to the video, but also because Kirkbride's ever-present cigarette has sent me into a raging nicotine fit.