Nick Konkle, Lead Gameplay Designer of The Elder Scrolls Online, is similar to many of the other developers we’ve featured on Show Us Your Rig by having three different computers. However, Nick ups the ante by cramming them all onto a single desk. He was kind enough to take the time and show off his set-up, including that one monitor he just can’t bear to part with.
"Look up, here it comes," the guy behind me whispers. There's something akin to reverence in his voice. I look up at the screen on QuakeCon's main stage to see footage of some thug pilfering the crates and boxes surrounding a shopkeeper's stand, taking care to avoid her gaze. The text accompanying each of the items is red; he's stealing. A guard catches him, and he's asked to hand over the value of the items, which amounts to a measly five gold. He obliges. The guy behind me is snickering now, and I hear a slap that must be a high-five he shared with his friend.
The perspective shifts; we're now behind the twin blades of some Nightblade slinking about the Daggerfall Covenant town of Wayrest. He sneaks up behind poor Phillic Menant, who's just strolling over to chat with the local stablemaster. The blades flash, Phillic falls with a bloody splash, and the crowd around me collectively leans forward. This is something new; something unexpected. "We'd like to encourage everybody to start killing NPCs in the game," says Paul Sage, ESO's creative director, just as we see an archer fire an arrow through an NPC enjoying the morning air. And the entire crowd goes wild.
Earlier this month, ZeniMax, owner of id Software and John Carmack’s former employer, sent formal notice to Oculus claiming key technology its virtual reality headset relies on were developed by John Carmack while he was still employed by ZeniMax. ZeniMax claimed that only with its help, Oculus founder Palmer Luckey “was able to transform his garage-based pipe dream into a working reality," and it wanted compensation. Today, the company officially filed suit.
Apologies for once again using that one photo of John Carmack wearing his Oculus goggles, but it's pretty much the perfect illustration for this story - if only he was frowning rather than flashing a cheeky grin. So yes: Oculus have responded in a statement to Zenimax's claims that John Carmack took "technology and know-how" belonging to them when he left id Software/Zenimax for Oculus VR - and, blimey, they're not holding back. "We are disappointed but not surprised by Zenimax’s actions and we will prove that all of its claims are false", the statement begins, before providing a full point-by-point rebuttal of Zenimax's assertions. You'll find it below.
ZeniMax Media, which owns id Software and Bethesda Game Studios, sent formal notice to Oculus claiming key technology the virtual reality headset relies on were developed by John Carmack while he was still employed by at ZeniMax. ZeniMax claims that only with its help, Oculus founder Palmer Luckey “was able to transform his garage-based pipe dream into a working reality," and now it wants compensation.
An economy-crippling bug caused The Elder Scrolls Online to disable its Guild Banks on North American and European servers early Friday. Developer Zenimax has already put together a fix in the latest patch, but some users are complaining that they’ve been trying to warn developers about the problem for weeks.
Psst. Hey you, looking to score a Beech Lightning Staff of Flame in The Elder Scrolls Online? I know of a place that could hook you up. The fan-run TESO Elite Forums has set up an unofficial marketplace, where you can post the stuff you’re looking to buy or sell. The marketplace has even been endorsed by developer ZeniMax Online.
The Elder Scrolls Online will feel familiar to both Elder Scrolls and MMO players, but not wholly—character building, for instance, uses a system adapted from both games. These tips will set you on a prosperous journey from level one to 10, with little time wasted and a character build you can be proud of.
The Elder Scrolls Online has been officially playable by the pre-ordering type since Sunday. Look for the first of our review impressions later this week, but for now, we expect most players will share this observation: the UI is too sparse. ESO seems ashamed of its MMO mechanics, hiding damage numbers and useful information such as experience gains.
A new dev play video for The Elder Scrolls Online has popped up, this time focused on the types of content that groups can look forward to. Zenimax Online makes a point of saying that it's not going to force us to play with other people if we don’t want to, but there is an awful lot of cool stuff waiting if we do.
Playing The Elder Scrolls Online will require a monthly subscription fee, as confirmed in an interview with Gamestar. "Going with any other model meant that we would have to make sacrifices and changes we weren't willing to make," ZeniMax Studios Game Director Matt Firor stated in the interview, elaborating with a bunch of reasons why he believes TES isn't a good fit for free-to-play.
President Todd Hollenshead has left id Software, according to Bethesda. Hollenshead was well-known as part of the id team since 1996, where he worked alongside John Carmack, and as the long-haired MC of Quakecon in Dallas.
While we certainly saw a whole lot of online spell casting and ogre-clobbering in The Elder Scrolls Online at E3, there was a noticeable absence at the event. Deathclaws didn’t roam the show floor like they normally do. The food trucks weren’t serving the decadent squirrel on a stick, and Fallout 4 was nowhere to be seen.
The Elder Scrolls Online remains a big question mark in the eyes of a lot of Elder Scrolls fans. How will the immersive, interactive world of Skyrim and Oblivion translate to an always-online multiplayer experience without losing their character?
While I was in the USA to see The Elder Scrolls Online I chatted to game director Matt Firor and lead gameplay designer Nick Konkle about their experience making the game, the thinking behind the class and combat systems, and why they've kept first-person mode under wraps for so long.
You can also check out my hands-on from earlier today for a detailed breakdown of all the game's biggest features.
Interweb supersleuth Superannuation notes that a domain registrar associated with Square Enix picked up the warfornosgoth.com domain late last week, prompting speculation that somewhere, somehow, a new Legacy of Kain game is in the works (Nosgoth is the setting for the series). OXM noted an entry for a "Legacy of Kain videogame animation pitch" on artist Richard Buxton's LinkedIn profile listed back in 2011, and picked out some vampiric storyboard artwork from his online portfolio. A game, a film, a HD rerelease of all the Legacy of Kain games? All hands to the rumour mill.
While you could sum up Valve's plans for Linux compatibility as "full Steam ahead," it seems that not everyone is as sold on the OS's role in mainstream gaming. Yesterday, John Carmack questioned the wisdom of development studios working to make their games run natively in Linux. He tweeted, "Improving Wine for Linux gaming seems like a better plan than lobbying individual game developers for native ports. Why the hate?"
Carmack later expanded on his comments in a thread on Reddit's r/Linux, saying, "I don’t think that a good business case can be made for officially supporting Linux for mainstream games today."
Tom was lucky enough to interview Maria Aliprando, Nick Konkle and Brian Wheeler a few weeks ago. They're the gameplay and PVP designers for the Elder Scrolls Online.
Watch the exclusive interview after the jump. You might want to grab a beverage too; it's a whopping 17 minutes long, and includes heated debates about about fire and frost and all kinds of mystical things.
The Elder Scrolls Online has been announced! In the coming months we're going to gather every nugget of information about the game and post it here, as a constantly growing repository of facts and analysis. Whether you're for or against an online adaptation of the single player-dominated RPG series, The Elder Scrolls Online has the potential to be a great MMO on its own terms. Bethesda and Zenimax have assembled an experienced team, and - to hear them tell it - the game has been in development for several years. Keep checking back for more info as we get it.