First things first: I got my bear. This, as many players will attest, is the most important part of being a Warden. I had my doubts about this class choice on my return to The Elder Scrolls Online, as most pet classes I’ve played in other MMOs have featured pet AI that was sub-par at best. Mercifully, though, Pudge the Bear is a smart boy… or is at least smart enough to not interfere.Choose My Adventure reading public, I also joined up with the Psijic Order and respeced over to the Beast Caller skill line. In doing both, I found things a tiny bit underwhelming at the start, but eventually I found reasons to stay engaged with these two choices.
First order of business, since I was already in Artaeum: join up with the Psijic Order and see what its initial quest line involved. The Order’s opening quest sounded simple enough on paper, as it tasked me with running around the isle of Summerset to seal up breaches in time. But first, I had to find a magical relic to help me locate these temporal fissures known as the Augur of the Obscure.
Intrigued by the Doctor Strange-esque item, I set out to retrieve this Augur. Turns out this wasn’t just some bauble or trinket that gave your character a new animation when pressing F to interact with something; it was apparently a sentient object, which had planned its own escape from where it was being stored only to be captured again.
It also was extremely amusing in its interactions. It would have been so easy for the Augur to have a holier-than-thou attitude, but instead it sounded amused at the simplicity of the human mind, like a parent watching a toddler as it begins to grasp its world.
The endearment of the Augur’s personality was a good counterpoint to the underwhelming routine of the actual sealing of temporal fissures themselves. Basically, I just darted around on horseback to interact with a shiny thing. I’m not really sure what I was expecting, but I was hoping for a little bit more spice in the proceedings. Still, I had the Augur’s amusing anecdotes about the locations I was exploring to keep me engaged.
The biggest takeaway from the whole experience, though, was the simple joy of exploring Summerset. Doing so, naturally, led me to a couple of wonderful side quests to complete. It also led me to some pretty stunning sights, as is par for the course out here in The Elder Scrolls Online.
Ultimately, though, the first Psijic Order quest gave me an item I wasn’t particularly interested in and a skill line that seems to lend itself more to healers than it does DPS. The following quest in the Psijic line looks to be more of the same, only in three different zones than one, so I’ll probably shelve that for now.
With all of that said, I did have more than a few moments to dip my toes in the Beast Caller skill line pool as I did these quests. At first, I was pretty underwhelmed, with most of the abilities appearing to just be more of the same as my prior skill line choice only with a Destruction staff instead of a bow. Over the course of play, though, things began to unfold into more interesting abilities and I found a rotation that gave me a small sense of the impact I was looking for.
Most of my attacks usually focus around an alpha of stamping the base of my staff on the ground to burn an area, unleashing a bunch of bugs to hurt foes in front of me, and summoning a Cliff Racer down on my first target. After that, it’s click-click-click the left mouse button until things go flop. Eventually, I added the frosty armor ability and traded out the self-heal for a PBAoE of ice spikes, which all combined into turning me into a bit of a DoT hurt machine with slightly more survivability.
There are a few concerns I have with regards to the Beast Caller line I’m following, however. For one, it definitely doesn’t seem to do well in protracted fights, as my Magicka drain begins to show. Additionally, I’m forced to drink a health potion during these long battles, which always feels like an admittance of failure to my silly brain than a regular tactic for some reason. These problems were their most prevalent during a certain boss fight in the primary quest line I’m following, which saw me fall over dead several times.
Even so, this particular selection of buttons to push has slowly grown on me. It feels like a late-blooming kind of class choice that might have some more impressive abilities further down the line; I’ve already morphed my Wall of Hurty staff skill to cover a larger area, so that’s already switching things up. I’m also slowly beginning to work out how to maneuver and play this build effectively, as well as work out the best methods for surviving long battles in ESO in general.
Basically what I’m saying is, thanks for the suggestion!
To that point, it’s time for some more suggestions. As I mentioned previously, I have some funny money to burn — a little over 2,100 Crown Store points, to be precise — and being a compulsive shopper, I tend to dislike having excess income burning a hole in my pocket. So I turn to you readers for ideas on what to do with them.
What should I buy from the Crown Store?
- A new outfit. Dress up your big fella. Treat yourself. (31%, 40 Votes)
- A new mount. That Dwarven War Horse is so gauche. (19%, 24 Votes)
- A house. It'll probably be a bit small, but you'll also have a house. (50%, 63 Votes)
Total Voters: 127
Next up: I once more crave more contact with other players of the game. I’ve written about the joys of the drop-in/drop-out gameplay loop of ESO, but I’ve also recently opened up the Dungeon Finder tool. While I’m not the PvP’ing type, I’m also not entirely against flailing (and failing) in the general direction of whatever the Battlegrounds queue has in store for me. So, where should I find that human touch?
How should I play with others in ESO?
- Dungeon Finder. Enter the queue and see what the bigger dungeons offer. (46%, 62 Votes)
- Battlegrounds. Bad at PvP? Suck it up, buttercup. (11%, 15 Votes)
- Delve diving. Wander the map, enter random Delves, and help folk out. (43%, 57 Votes)
Total Voters: 134
Polls will close once again at 1:00 p.m. EST this coming Friday, February 15th. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m desperate to stop writing about ESO and get back in to playing it. Boy, this game has gotten under my skin in the best possible way.