Category: "News"

Todd Howard Interview & ESO Update

  06:58:00 pm, by   , 120 words  
Viewed 3953 times since 06/15/14
Categories: Elder Scrolls, News

GameStar, a PC gaming magazine in Germany, recently sat down with Bethesda Game Director and Executive Producer Todd Howard. The twenty-minute interview largely focuses on discussing The Elder Scrolls. Topics include Germany (home to the second-largest TES community), game development and platforms, the trend toward open-world games, and how TES III: Morrowind saved the company.

Edit- Also, on their blog, Zenimax just revealed that the launch content for the PS4 and Xbox One versions of ESO will include most if not all of the updates they release between now and then, including Craglorn. They also discuss some other improvements to the game they are planning.

The new 1.1.5 update to ESO implemented a host of minor quest bug fixes; see here.

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Peter Hines on the ESO Subscription

  09:24:00 pm, by   , 260 words  
Viewed 3047 times since 04/01/14
Categories: Elder Scrolls, News

Bethesda's Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations, Peter Hines, made some comments earlier regarding Elder Scrolls Online, which, if you're looking to buy, will cost you roughly $55-$145 USD depending on where and what edition you purchase. See here.

I thought some comments related to the monthly $15 subscription fee required to keep playing the game after 30 days were remarkable. But I've done enough remarking lately. So I'll just leave it to Hines and let you fill in the gaps:

"If you don’t like the game, of course you’re not subscribing to it [...] You get the game, you get your first month ..."

"[If] for example, you love Skyrim, you played it for 125 hours, but after three or four weeks you were done, then you can do the exact same thing in Elder Scrolls Online."

"You can buy it, play the hell out of it for four weeks and go ‘Eh! I’m done. I did everything I wanted to do [...] now I’m out.’ Then you’re out."

"The initial purchase is exactly the same as any other PC game because you don’t have to pay for the subscription until your 30 days is up."

“If there are ten million subscribers after a month, then [I don't have to worry]. If I have just ten people playing the game, then that’s a different scenario and we’d have to do something [...] In between there are literally a billion different possibilities [...]"

"I don’t see us learning something that’s like ‘we never saw THAT coming!' We do so much testing. But I don’t know. I think it’s TBD.”

Blog Update

  06:03:00 pm, by Daveh   , 175 words  
Viewed 5973 times since 01/30/14
Categories: News

As you may have noticed the blog has been given a minor, and long overdue, update:

  • Upgraded b2evolution from 2.x to 5.x
  • Minor changes to the default skin to make it match the UESP theme
  • Some setting tweaks

One thing I must say is that despite jumping 3 major versions of the blog software the update was the easiest and most straightfoward process of anything web-related application I've done...hats off of the b2evolution development team. Editing the skin was similarly trivial. I usually loathe upgrades as it seems even trivial ones can break terribly and leave you hunting forums in the depths of the web for the one person who experienced the same error as you. MediaWiki in particular is bad with upgrades turning something which should take no more than 30 minutes into a week long adventure.

Everything appears to be working but it anything is broken or there's more apps/widgets that should be installed let me know. The skin can be similarly commented on (I can give access to edit if anyone is particularly interested).

UESP Forum Turns Four!!

  11:52:56 pm, by Cactus   , 548 words  
Viewed 36323 times since 23/11/09
Categories: Games, Elder Scrolls, News, UESP

It's just closing up on the fourth anniversary of the forums now. Our girl, she's growing up.:>>

We celebrated this year by holding a few competitions in writing, art, and even a competition for the Mod-team's avatars and signatures. We didn't have quite as many entries as I'd hoped, but it was still fun going through all the entries and choosing the best. Well, fun and difficult. Everyone who entered brought something different and interesting to the table, and at times it was a tough choice. We finally came up with our decisions and posted them earlier today. We even rewarded the winners with a superficial and temporary appointment to Tea Part Mod.&#59;)

The writing was the worst to judge. Every single entry was really really good. Masser wrote an interesting action story involving the enslavement of Argonians by other Argonians. Dragour wrote an exceptional piece about a runaway Telvanni wizard that had a really good ending. Vivec's Tears wrote a great poem about Oblivion vs. Morrowind that I found quite amusing. Urthdigger wrote a very funny piece about the Neravarine fighting the head of House Redoran. And finally r brought his usual intelligence and style to the table in the form of an essay written from the point of view of a Mages Guild scholar. If you didn't catch the link before, you can find all of these writings by clicking this link.

Regarding signatures and avatars, you can just swing on over to the forum and check out the winning entries for yourself. The winner for signatures was Nyk45 and Nyk also tied with Reaper67 for the avatar win. They're really quite good, so please check them out.

While this isn't a competition, it does involve the whole forum. As a bonus to the other festivities we had the idea for Mod interviews. Having no one else to do them for us, we decided to them ourselves. Every mod came up with a series of questions for all the other mods. With five of us, it quickly grew to be a really huge deal and the interviews were huge. In addition, we made a special thread so anyone on the forum could ask us questions. We took those, the tons of questions from the other mods, and compiled them into five in-depth and often very funny interviews. PLEASE, go check these out as they're worth a read. Warning, you'll need some time, so pull up a comfy chair and grab a bowl of crisps and enjoy!:p

And finally there was the art competition. I mention this last because in my opinion, this was the most outstanding entry of all, and I think it deserves special mention. It's a photo taken by user Yeepo and titled "A Knife in the Dark." Hopefully everyone reading this will recognise that reference.
A Knife in the Dark

I'd like to close by saying thank you to EVERYONE who participated in any way, whether you entered into a contest or just asked us a question. So, a shoutout goes to:
Vivec's Tears
Vivec's Tears
Dark Lord
Guy No. 2
The Dog Whisperer
and of course the Mod Team, aka Team C:

In the News -- Backups!

  09:01:10 pm, by Daveh   , 335 words  
Viewed 21845 times since 10/13/09
Categories: Misc, News

A piece of news that caught my eye and interest recently. A snippet from the official customer letter:

... Regrettably, based on Microsoft/Danger’s latest recovery assessment of their systems, we must now inform you that personal information stored on your device – such as contacts, calendar entries, to-do lists or photos – that is no longer on your Sidekick almost certainly has been lost as a result of a server failure at Microsoft/Danger. That said, our teams continue to work around-the-clock in hopes of discovering some way to recover this information. However, the likelihood of a successful outcome is extremely low. ...

Wow! The short story seems to be that Danger, a MS owned company that makes the Sidekick and stores all their user's data, decided to upgrade their network storage system which somehow failed and they don't have any backups losing all data stored in the process....

Blink, blink....

I had to read it a few times to make sure I heard it right. While I'm sure there are undisclosed details to the failure to basically summarize what went wrong:

  • They were working on a system that was essentially bought for $500 million (!) in February 2009
  • They didn't make a backup before working on the system despite what seems to be a pretty significant procedure
  • They didn't know their existing backups were unusable until it was too late

There have been similar stories in the past few years of large web sites or companies having a critical failure of some sort and not having the backups to restore things resulting in a huge set back or even the company going under. I'll be writing about what I've learned through trial and error (mostly error) about backups from running the UESP in the future. Our backup strategy is far from perfect but apparently it's miles better than companies orders of magnitude larger and stories like this make me feel a little better about losing a whole day of data from the UESP's database hard drive failure in July.