ZOS director says The Elder Scrolls Online will keep releasing content for as long as players stick around

    
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What’s the life expectancy of any MMORPG? Certainly there are games that have been around for decades, but those are edge cases at best. ZeniMax Online Studios director Matt Firor certainly seems surprised by The Elder Scrolls Online’s lifespan of seven years, and he doesn’t foresee the game ending its update cadence until players decide to leave.

“The community will tell us when the game is starting to be done and they have not at all yet. We’re still, in many ways, growing. ESO is a worldwide game. We have people from almost every country in the world logging in at some point. It’s huge and it’s very, very much played by a disparate group of people. It’s not just ‘hardcore MMO fans’… People are going to keep playing it and we’ll keep making content for them as long as they’re around.”

As for how player numbers look for the game, Firor doesn’t go into specifics but does mention that there’s a “healthy mix” of new players, regular players, players who come in to play certain pieces of content, and those who churn out but return years later, while noting that ESO has added “millions of players” every year since 2014.

The interview further talks about the swelling multiplayer and MMO genre, the upcoming Console Enhanced edition of the game, and the studio’s strategy with keeping players and releasing content expansions. It’s a brief but insightful interview that’s worth any fan’s time.

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Kvarin Sunermidst

They really need to unify the accounts across platforms. No reason for this not to exist, seeing as they own all the data that exist within their own server clusters.

Not saying everything needs to transfer, but CP and purchased items from the crown store definitely should exist across platforms.

MilitiaMasterV
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MilitiaMasterV

Maybe put the craft bag as a purchase-able instead of a forever-fee and you’d get more people who stuck around/paid for the game. I know I almost gave up without it the first time, but was bored enough to pay for a year. Then stopped playing/paying…and left for awhile. Came back but am not paying because my stipend of crowns from being paid for a year can pretty much pay for all the DLC except maybe 2, so I’m just waiting on deals to buy the DLC using my crowns. Leaving me with a mostly functional game if I just ignore a whole range of the items you drop in it and destroy them/don’t pick em up. Yeah, it would be nice to have expanded storage and whatever, but I tend to purchase PERMANENT access to things like that, not RENT IT from you, so the craft bag is kind of a ‘OK, that would be nice, but crafting really isn’t that fun on here…’.

Just a thought…

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Mallus

^ This 100%, the crafting bag and extra banks slots are a deal breaker for me as a FTP player.

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Bruno Brito

What’s the life expectancy of any MMORPG?

The way i see it: It depends. A lot of games are monetized and develop content and focus in such ways that are unsustainable long term. But at the same time, most MMO studios have little to no side project that helps them keeping up, so those same MMOs are potentially kept going for long periods of time.

It’s a really weird limbo to be on, where smart monetization would be way more healthier for the cash flow and the game as a whole, but it would require the executives to have restraint when exercising their creativity trying to dime us.

I like to use Allods as an example, because Allods was the prime WoW clone, and it was a really solid one, it could have been a F2P powerhouse. Instead, it established itself as a incredibly P2W title, and nowadays it struggles to break beyond the 10k players, it’s P2P server not achieving even the 100s. It survives entirely on whales.

So, for me, it depends. I don’t consider games like Allods or SWL to really be “alive” as much as they are kept on a lifeline to cashgrab a bit more because keeping server up doesn’t cost much.

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Arktouros

What’s the life expectancy of any MMORPG?

From a business perspective I’d say the answer to this is long as it doesn’t become immensely more profitable to do something else then there’s no reason to stop supporting/developing an existing product.

The only reason games that have been around for decades have been edge cases is because MMOs as games were edge cases over 20 years ago. I mean there was like 4 prominent titles by this point in 2001 (only 1 has shut down) and Anarchy Online/Dark Age of Camelot are coming up on their 20 year anniversaries this year. In 2024 WOW will likely be the first MMO that’s remained relevant to the current MMO market but it’s always been an outlier in terms of performance.

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squid

I downloaded/install ESO a couple weeks ago intending to get back into it to hold me over until New World, but then I remembered that I’d have to sort through and install all the mods to fix the interface and just lost interest.

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rc13047

It literally took me 30 mins to get up and running to a good standard with no UI bugs, then adding in other addons as and when i remembered I needed them. It’s easy with something like Minion.

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SmiteDoctor

Lmao, download minion, get your addons and play.

You make it sound like you have to tweak a mod list for Skyrim.

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Hurbster

Yes, a month ago I replaced about 7 mods with Bandits UI, should have done it years ago.

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Vanquesse V

I’m still pretty mad at addon libraries got detached from the addons themselves without any automation to do the heavy work. When an addon depends on a lib that depends on a lib that depends on a lib things are getting mighty silly. ESO has also had a history of really slow migration of addons to newer versions on major updates, even for top5 most popular addons.

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nomadmorlock9

I personally prefer the shared libraries. Otherwise every addon has to contain the same repeated data over and over taking up more memory, etc. I just returned to the game after a couple years. Started up minion, uninstalled all the old files, reinstalled the ones I wanted being sure to add the libraries needed for each and was done in 15 minutes.

Several we’re not even needed now such as Awesome Guild Store since they added the same functionality into the base game.

Having a blast.

MilitiaMasterV
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MilitiaMasterV

Or you could, y’know, play the game as it was intended without add-ons (Which in ye olden times would be called cheating.)…

I’ve been playing just fine without a single add-on. The only thing I’d really like an add-on for is the market prices, but there’s off-game websites for that even..so I’m not bothering.

Other than that, something that points to where treasure maps are, because I tend to just ‘cheat’ and look em up using a off-game website now anyway after figuring a good few of them out on my own…but right now I’m not even doing maps because I need to save champ points for the boxes give better stuff thing, and I’m not ESO+ so most of the trash just wastes space anyway.

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Bruno Brito

Or you could, y’know, play the game as it was intended without add-ons (Which in ye olden times would be called cheating.)…

God no. ESO and overall ES/Fallout series without modding is just insanity.

MilitiaMasterV
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MilitiaMasterV

I mean, most games ‘could be improved with quality of life modding’ but things that ‘make it easier on you’, are also intended to remove challenges you would otherwise face, making things ‘easier’ on you, but removing the sense of accomplishment when you succeed it without ‘help’ from some other source.

It’s like going in and deleting the huge champion health bar back in the days on GW2 would’ve made the game fun, but it also would’ve made them…not champions?

I get why people do it, but they are just making things ‘easier’ on themselves and denying themselves the reason they are often playing to begin with…to challenge yourself.

I mean, if you don’t want a challenge, sure, that’s OK too, but I’ve found with ‘cheats’ that allowed you to one-shot stuff, things get real boring, real fast, and you lose interest. (I had ‘god mode’ and ‘one hit’ and all sorts of ‘warez’ stuff way back when…I got over that kinda stuff…)

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Bruno Brito

but removing the sense of accomplishment when you succeed it without ‘help’ from some other source.

That’s extremely subjective. These “Sense of accomplishment” buzzwords don’t mean anything for me, when all i want is a polished experience. Hard, epic games are fun and all, but they’re not something i wanna play all the time.

Using drawing as a metaphor, i don’t think everything you produce must be a masterpiece and take a humongous ammount of time, nor do i think simpler stuff won’t give you the satisfaction.

Also, ESO is not harder without addons. It’s just extremely inconvenient and time-consuming.

MilitiaMasterV
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MilitiaMasterV

You’re just making the same type of arguments I used to use to rationalize the usage.

It’s OK, I understand.

I will grant that games creators nowadays are just purposely making things that aren’t intended as a ‘challenge’ so much as a way to waste your time, so I can see the reasoning behind wanting to be over and done with it quicker, because they are just barriers to get over to ‘the fun’ we used to have from games, which are put in place to make sure they keep receiving their money steadily and you keep paying them because you think you’re having ‘the fun’.

But that’s more of a disconnect between humanities’ overarching greed, and our gullibility in falling for the same old story over and over and over again, just told in slightly different formats. Humans don’t learn from history. They just keep failing and repeating it…

As an artist, you can probably understand better how art wasn’t intended as a monetarily rewarding experience to begin with…it just lead that way…because people placed value upon that which inspired them to new heights.

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Bhagpuss Bhagpuss

” Certainly there are games that have been around for decades, but those are edge cases at best. ”

Are they, though? Are they really? Go do some counting one day. I have. You’ll be surprised.

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rc13047

TBH I’ve just returned as a player who has played now and then since launch and it’s in a very good state in-game. I’m currently all over the map doing stuff and there’s nowhere I don’t see people – and I’m not including the last expansion in that statement, even though I have it, as I’m currently doing psijic order stuff