MMO’s are games that are meant to reward large time investment with huge immersive worlds and satisfying content that you can play with friends. While some of this is achieved more often than not you’ll find yourself grinding levels to access certain content, truly exploring the world freely doesn’t happen until you are well invested.
I’ve never been able to fully get myself into an MMO because of this, even when a large group of my friends are playing with me — the reason why is The Elder Scrolls games have ruined them for me. The exploration and freedom that a game like Skyrim gives the player right from the beginning is unparalleled, there are still people playing that game everyday discovering new things. With the community making mods at a ridiculous pace the game feels like it gets more patches than a standard online game too.
Levelling and growing stronger is certainly an aspect of the games, but it doesn’t hinder enjoyment or block casual players from seeing anything. I would also challenge and say that the towns and general environments feel far more populated than World of Warcraft, even in its prime. There always interesting characters to meet and have interesting chats with that will lead to discoveries of the main story or just the lore about the whole world that has been created over these 5 games. Often if you even boot up the most current MMO you are bound to have to read through endless text blurbs to get any kind of lore, that’s no way to get someone interested in the game.
Morrowind and every game I have played in the series have made me feel like I am on some grand adventure, MMO’s give me that feeling initially until I realize that the grand mission is kill a certain amount of animals in each environment I walk into.
I sincerely hope that The Elder Scroll Online doesn’t fall into the same traps of a standard MMO, instead gives you the same experience filled with rich detailed story and exploration, only now your friends can join you.
In the meantime you can pick up The Elder Scroll Collections and experience endless amounts of content in absorbing environments that no game can rival at this point — I strongly recommend it.