My friends have been trying to get me into Final Fantasy XIV and World of Warcraft many times, I always get these things that eventually prevent me from enjoying either of those.
I enjoy atmospheric games that focus on storytelling so when I have to focus on meta and keep close attention to cooldowns and wth limit breaks it really takes away from what is actually happening. In FFXIV and WoW your attention is 90% in what cooldowns are active and what are not I've felt, in ESO there isn't really cooldowns of anything so all the skills that you have active and available can be spammed how you please.
WoW and FFXIV both are just big open areas with cool models and interesting details but almost no interactability and if you do have some interactability it's with gathering but even then the graphical limitations make it feel gruesomely cartoonish, in ESO fishing, hunting, treasure chests, alchemy plants, provisions and TREASURE (pickpocketing and stealing are so good!) aspects of immersing yourself to the world your character inhabits.
Imagine a completely voice-acted MMORPG and trying to compare Morrowind-esque interaction mechanics dumbed down to save storage still being used in 2014 (FFXIV), of course you want to be presented the best version of what you want to convey. I find FFXIV's story so god damn personality-centric that it hurts, ESO's story, quests and interactions all feel brought through the lens of scarcity and war, many problems are presented with a lot of detail and choices in i.e zone quests actually do matter, unlike from what I've seen in the linear one-lined linear side quests of WoW.
I asked twice when I got ESO if it's worth the 20€ from friends and nobody could answer me. Tamriel Unlimited is very dependent of what you want to pick and how easy you want your travels to be so I picked Stamina Sorcered dual-wield build, it's served me so well and I'm making so much decent gold that resetting skills isn't a problem either if I do want to try another weapon or even a new character aswell. Being unemployed isn't and shouldn't be an obstacle for any game, but currently you can choose this or play the very dumbed down trial version of FFXIV or just WoW and the horror stories of the money used to that are numerous and more well told than I ever could.
But I think the most important aspect of ESO is adventure, something neither FFXIV or WoW could give me properly. WoW has me be part of Horde and whatever I do I must always feel like I'm part of a bigger stride towards a specific goal. FFXIV is me being one of the most important characters in the story and this is all of the players at the same time. ESO is me being on a side but not bound to it, defeating Molag Bal but not destroying him, aiding citizens of the Empire and Ebonheart Pact but also killing them if need be, robbing them when I feel like it and so on. Talk about travelling aswell, long are gone the times of Morrowind where you could jump across the map indeed of the Elder Scrolls, but I never neither found flying through the air on a mount to be central to my sense of adventure either. If I can take a blimp I'll take it but riding through Tamriel on horseback through VERY detailed terrain hits better than flying through aging round mountains and cartoony trees of WoW or in a very selected and specific zone for flight in FFXIV, just let me not be able to choose at all in that case, immerse me in other ways.
I write this because ESO is what hole my last playthrough of Skyrim left me wanting, it is that same experience through a new way to observe. I can even say that going to Skyrim might feel slightly emptier aswell because I don't have sets, styles, dyes, nearly every single zone of Tamriel, crazy quests, memories from older games and worlds that keep on building. ESO feels very warm to me who bought Skyrim in 2011, that's what it still feels like the further I play. It's great that Zenimax is making the greatest attempt to bring so much to ESO through their work instead of making an emulation of what Skyrim could be as an MMORPG, they're shaping it into this boogaloo of daedras on the run and you waking up in Coldharbour and wondering your place in this world, that's what Morrowind starts you with atleast.
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© Post "Honestly, what an MMORPG." for game The Elder Scrolls.
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