The Elder Scrolls Online: first gameplay footage shows combat, playable races, PvP and more

Bethesda's latest trailer for The Elder Scrolls Online may have just changed my mind about the game: I was a little lukewarm on the idea before - now I am rather Dovah-keen. The video shows off the first proper gameplay footage (rather than the environmental fly-by videos we've seen previously) and talks us through the MMO's features. You can read our earlier in-depth Elder Scrolls impressions here , or hit the jump and see the trailer for yourself.

Here are the headlines: there aren't any shards - everything takes place on one single server, or "megaserver" as Bethesda have dubbed it. You can play as nine different races and there's oodles of customisation and specialisation on top. Perks sound particularly interesting - and extremely broad, too - determining everything from vampiric powers and pets to how you replenish your mana on the battlefield.

Combat, meanwhile, is said to be in line with traditional Elder Scrolls action, with attacks and blocks tied to mouse-clicks rather than hotkeys. That said, the video doesn't convey the sense of brutal kinetic connection you get from a Skyrim ruckus; it looks very much like MMO hotkey combat, even if it isn't.

The entire thing takes place 1000 years before the events depicted in Skyrim, and all of Tamriel is at your disposal. The Imperial homeland of Cyrodiil has an extra special role, however: it's the setting of the game's PvP component. A time of uncertain succession, players of any level can take to the field in massive battles, besieging forts, smashing them with ballistas, and eventually claiming the emperor's crown for their own side.

Sounds like there's plenty to do, anyway - certainly enough to keep the Dragonborn from getting dragonbored.