Greetings everyone—it’s time for another update from the ESO development team.
Since our last Road Ahead post, we've launched Update 1, which featured Craglorn and a whole bunch of bug fixes, tweaks, and smaller systems changes like Death Recap. Along the way, we’ve continued to fix problems by releasing weekly maintenance patches, and we’ll keep doing so in between our larger Updates.
Off the top, I want to start by stating the obvious: ESO is a living, evolving game, and it will continue to be one as long as you, our community, continue to support it. Thanks so much for being involved with the game—for your enthusiasm and for posting your thoughts and ideas on the forums, Reddit, and social media. I know sometimes there is as much criticism as there is praise out there in internet-land for the game, but that shows a passionate fan base that cares about the game, which is very important to acknowledge.
Let’s take a look at where we are and where we’re going:
Class Ability Status
We take extra time with class and ability balance issues and bugs, and we have to be very careful not to do too much too quickly or balance can swing wildly. All your feedback is taken seriously, and we’ll continue to work on character build and balance issues on an ongoing basis.
Here are some of the class changes that we’re working on as part of regular maintenance patches:
- The Dragonknight is still a bit stronger than intended, and we’ll be making some small changes over time to the class. Our intent—no matter what you read on the internet—is not to nerf DKs into Oblivion (so to speak), but to continue tweaking them until they are in line with the survivability of the other classes.
- We also know that Nightblades are reporting they are underpowered. I know all about this, as my main character is a Nightblade, and I’ve been running into some of these same issues myself. Again, just like the DK, we’re not going to make wholesale changes quickly; instead, we’re going to make small, incremental adjustments until NB class abilities fall in line with other class abilities.
- Also, I sincerely apologize for not having the Biting Jabs change documented in a patch note when Update 1 went live. This was an oversight, not a nefarious omission by design. We have clearly documented many other ability nerfs in the past—we just missed this one in the massive Update 1 patch.
- Ultimate spamming is a problem in PvP. We’ll address it on an ongoing basis.
The European Megaserver
We are hard at work on migrating the EU megaserver to its final home in a European datacenter. This move should be made sometime during the summer, and we’ll let you know as soon as there’s more info to share.
We are now two-thirds of the way through the 90-day duration PvP Campaigns we launched with, so we’re starting to think about additions and changes to the Campaign system, as shown by the new shorter-length Campaign we launched with Update 1. We’ll post some additional information and thoughts on the forums to bounce ideas off the community, so stay tuned for that. Some of our ideas include more short-term Campaigns or alternate rule sets—we want to shake things up a bit, but we’re going to make sure everyone knows what we're doing before we change anything.
Some of you have been reporting connection errors when logging into the game – we’ve fixed a few problems relating to this over the last two weeks, and the maintenance update on Monday should have taken care of the rest of them. Please contact CS if you still get error 301 when logging into the game.
Public Test Server (PTS)
Our Public Test Server allows us to test new systems and areas before they’re launched on the live server. It’s where we held the earliest closed betas before ESO was available to the public, and it’s where we continue to test our patches and updates before they’re deployed to the live server.
As our PTS community can tell everyone, the server has had its own account system for many months now. I'm very happy to announce that any player with an active ESO account can now patch and play on PTS using the normal ESO launcher. Just open the launcher settings and select "Show Public Test Environment", and you can download the PTS version of the game to test out new features when the server is up.
PTS will be available from time to time as we test major updates (our four- to six-week patches), complete with templates that let you create high-level characters. In fact, it’s open right now with Update 2, featuring the Veteran version of Crypt of Hearts. Every active subscriber is invited to play and give feedback on PTS.
Update 2 is now available on the PTS, and is tentatively scheduled to go live on the main game servers the week of June 23rd. Here are some of the new features players can look forward to:
- Crypt of Hearts, a new Veteran Dungeon created for Veteran Rank 12 characters. Continue the Crypt of Hearts story and learn the secrets of Nerien'eth the Lich.
- Field of View slider—a much-requested feature that lets you tweak the FOV while playing in first-person mode.
- More object interaction. You can now pick up and equip weapons and armor that you find lying around in the world.
- More ongoing bug fixes and combat polish. See the Update 2 patch notes for the full list.
We have lots more planned for ESO beyond the above—Update 3 is scheduled to arrive sometime in July. It will focus on player customization systems like armor dyeing, guild insignias and tabards, and it will also be the start of the rework of our delves (smaller dungeons) to make them much larger and give them more worth exploring.
We’re also starting to re-work many quests in the game so we can greatly reduce the chances of you being separated from your party in different "layers" as you explore Tamriel. This is an ongoing effort, but you’ll see the problem alleviated over the course of the summer. We’ll also introduce more Veteran Dungeons, another area of Craglorn with an all-new Trial, and much, much more. Stay tuned for details.
We've been looking closely at the Veteran system, and we want it to be more exciting to get to level 50. In order to take on the Veteran system, we have to use an approach that addresses several key components:
- Itemization – we’ll add gear that’s harder to acquire but more worthwhile. We're looking at gear that will make others envious when you’re wearing or wielding it—both in appearance and in stat boosts. To do this, we’ll adjust soft caps so that they don't kick in quite as quickly. We have to be very careful about how much we adjust numbers, because the greater the variance, the more people can hurt their intended builds.
- Veteran Ranks - we're looking at giving you more "points" to spend when you hit a Veteran Rank. This is at a very, very early stage, but essentially, we want to keep the great customization you have for your character from 1-50 and allow you to continue augmenting it in meaningful ways. Our goal is to let you have many more fun character development decisions post level 50.
- More content - We're going to continue providing more content on a regular basis. Veteran Dungeons, areas like Craglorn, Trials, and etc. Further, we’re going to allow dungeons to level to the group leader. This means you'll be able to go back and play any dungeon to get rewards appropriate for your group leader’s level.
That’s all for this Road Ahead. Once again, thank you all for your enthusiasm and support. There’s a lot to look forward to in the coming months, and we’ll continue providing updates like this one so you know what’s ahead! See you online!