Sunday, 25 August 2013

The Rise & Fall Of The Elder Scrolls Online

I'm not really into MMO games that much. I'm not really a multiplayer person anyway to be honest. I'll always pick a single-player experience over a shared one any day.

But I have to admit, I was looking forward to the Elder Scrolls Online. Imagine an ES game with your friends. With strangers. Imagine an ES game with more of a living and breathing world than any Elder Scrolls game had ever had.

I love the series anyway and while the thought of an ES MMO didn't get me immediately psyched, I grew to really like the idea after a while.

That was until recently, when Bethesda announced that the much anticipated game would launch at a standard RRP retail price of $60/£50 yet also charge users per month too. Yep, you're gonna have to shell out $60/£50 and then another $15 on top of that EVERY month just to keep playing.

Let's work this out.


But we can't forget the cost of PSN and XBL if you play on a console.

Xbox Live will cost $60 a year while PSN Premium will cost $50. Either way the cost to use the game for the first year will be practically $300 on both platforms. And from then on in, after the first year, you'll still be looking at between $230-$240.

That's one hell of a fucking cost to use one, yes ONE, game. In fact that pricing regime boggles my mind. It also boggles everyone else's mind too. No one seems to understand why the decision to include a cost per month was made.

Do Bethesda not realise that they just shot themselves in the head? They've betrayed their fan base and customers.

What really - REALLY - pisses me off though is when any developer/publisher thinks they can charge a fee to buy the game and then charge customers AGAIN to actually USE the game they JUST BOUGHT.

When you buy something, you're handing over your hard earned money so you can obtain the use of the thing or service you're purchasing. But when you hand over your $60 to buy the ES Online, that $60 has only given you the right to take the game back to your house to pay another fee, this time of $15, to actually use the game.

It's like the $60 is the first stage - or level.

Level 1: Pay $60.
Level 2: Take the game home.
Level 3: Pay $15 to actually be able to use the game.
Level 4: Enjoy until the next month when you must pay another $15.

It's pointless and it sucks. It's a terrible way to market any game. I know MMOs cost more to run as they require constant attention over a long period of time, but either charge $60 and add in in-game purchases and things or simply charge $15 a month. Doing both is a ridiculous amount of money to expect customers to pay. And, quite frankly, it's shameful.

But in the end, what does it matter? It's not out yet and you can always cancel any pre-orders you have. We're not obligated to buy this game. If paying that much is ridiculous, which it is, then we shouldn't do it. At the end of the day only Bethesda lose out. And they will do. Because paying $60 for a game only to have to pay an extra $15 per month afterwards is ludicrous.

What do you think about the extra monthly fee? Will you be buying the Elder Scrolls Online? Leave your comments below!


  1. I left that presentation with my eyebrow quirked at exactly the right angle to impart how little I was impressed, and it was with that eyebrow still firmly arched I sat down to play the game last week. elder scrolls online

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