Starting Over Already

I’ve been enjoying my time in Elder Scrolls Online the past few weeks. High Isle is such a pretty zone; I’m constantly stopping to take screenshots. It hasn’t been too bad starting out in the latest chapter either. The story seems pretty self contained so far. I’m sure prior knowledge might enchance it somewhat but I’m having no issue following along. So then why did I decide to roll another character and start in the base game?

My general rule of thumb is my first character in any MMO is going to be a practice child. It’s the one I’ll use to figure out the game and when I think I have basics down, roll a new character. I wasn’t 100% sold on the Dragonknight class after the first few levels. A melee range mage is a cool concept but after 18 levels it just wasn’t clicking for me. As I did some research around the class I found it was a very good DPS and tank but one of the worst healers. If I’m going to eventually venture out to group content I’m going to want to heal. With all that in mind the urge to re-roll got stronger and stronger.

ESO seems like the kind of game you’ll only want to run one character through in it’s entirety. I’m enjoying the quests and exploration the most right now but that’s because it’s new to me. I don’t think I’d have the same excitement retreading quests and zones I’ve already done before. I set out to make a character I could play for the long term.

I did some more research on classes this time around. After running through a good chunk of High Ilse I became enamored with the High Isle Druids and their lore. I wanted to make one of my own so I made a Breton Warden. Now me and my bear companion can roam around Tamriel and have a much better healing kit for when I eventually want to try dungeons.

My first character made it far enough in to High Isle that restarting there wasn’t appealing. High Isle aslo seemed more geared toward later game characters with dailies, world bosses, and a substantial card game which screams I’ve done everything in this game already and now I just want to play cards.. It makes sense though seeing as this is the latest expansion for the game. With that in mind I elected to experience things from the beginning and chose to start in Stros M’Kai. By the time I get back to High Isle the story won’t be as fresh.

I met Captain Kaleen and Jakarn here, two prominent characters in High Isle. I knew I’d seen them somewhere before!

Stros M’Kai is a much smaller zone than High Isle was which was probably to be expected now that I think about it. One of the things that struck me though was how much the quest structure differed here than in High Isle. In High Isle, every side quest felt like it’s own adventure with multiple quests in the chain. Here in Stros M’Kai the side quests are one off “go here, do the thing, come back” type of quests but there are more of them scattered around. I much preffer the side quest structure from High Isle. I do wonder if this will come back in the base game or if that structure will return once I’m in to Morrowind.

I’m also surprised to see that this base game started zone is just as pretty as High Isle was. I think it’s the lighting

While the zone is smaller I’m not trying to complete each zone before I move on. Finding all of the Sky Shards and Wayshrines is enough for me right now. I’m very much in to the seeing the story and doing quests and don’t want to kill my enthusiasm by trying to complete zones right now. I completed the main quest in Stros M’Kai and am off to the Orc island of Betnikh.

I Guess I’m Playing Elder Scrolls Online Now?

I’ve been searching for a new game to play for a whilenow. So much so that I was going to write a whole post about the few games I was deciding between. Then Friday happened and I had to make some decisions about what I really wanted to play.

ESO was alreading on the list of games I was leaning towards. . I’ve kept it perpetually installed because it’s giant (98 GB). It stares at me from my desktop waiting patiently to be played again. Over the years, I have tried over and over to get in to it but never made it too far. The classes confuse me and the combat is weird. But I love the story teliing and the world exploration so every once and a while I will boot it up to see if this time is the time it sticks.

The ongoing Quakecon Sale on Steam cemented my decision. The Elder Scrolls Online Collection: High Isle, which includes the latest expansion and all of the previous ones, was 35% off. Sure I could have just played the base game, which I already own, but I figured it wasn’t that expensive to pick the whole game up all at once.

This also solves one of the issues I have with MMOs I’ve repeatedly tried to get into: doing the same starter zones over again. With High Isle, and the Complete Collection in general, I can start somewhere I’ve never been before. In this case, creating a new character and skipping the tutorial, something I’ve also done a few times over the years, plops you right in to the latest expansion.

I was originally planning on starting in the base game once again but, like I said, skipping the tutorial doesn’t give you a choice. I was curious about starting other places so I did go back and play the tutorial on another character. It’s completely changed since the last time I played it. For the better, I might add. At the end, you can pick to start in any of the Chapters but the character I wanted to play was already in High Isle.

That’s where my journey begins this time around. I’m helping Lady Arabell Davaux find the missing delegates to a peace conference that’s being held on High Isle. Thanks to the few times I’ve run the base game starting zones I know what the Three Banners War is which, so far, seems to be the only prerequsit to follow the story.

Starting at the end may seem like an odd choice. I was going to jump back to the base game to get the whole story but High Isle is so pretty. I wanted to get out there and see more of it as soon as I arrived.

The plan is to push through and see if I can get used to the combat enough to really get in to the game (as long as I’m having fun of course). I have a habit of jumping ship when things are too different. Sometimes I want to play a new game without having to learn something new you know? But I have also found that sticking things out for just a little bit, even if their weird, can help get me over that hump and find enjoyment. Which is where I’m heading with ESO right now. The classes and combat are starting to make more sense now that I’ve been playing for a few days.

We shall see how this goes, I could be playing for a few more days or it could become my new game. only time will tell.