Lead gameplay designer Nick Konkle and Bethesda marketing manager Peter Hines said that ZeniMax –– Bethesda’s parent company –– has been in talk with Microsoft, but a online access fee still seems to be the way it will be on Xbox One and PS4.
"We have been in talks with Microsoft about that very thing, and seeing whether or not there's any room to change their minds about that, for folks who are only playing The Elder Scrolls Online and don't want to pay for an Xbox Live Gold subscription, just to pay for The Elder Scrolls Online,” Hines said.
As of right now, both PS4 and Xbox One require a fee for online play, while gamers will also need to pay to access The Elder Scrolls Online itself.
"The answer right now is that's the way it works, but it's something that we're aware of and we keep pushing on, to see if there's something that can be done,” Hines said.
The Elder Scrolls Online game director Matt Firor said any other model besides charging a flat monthly fee for the game could cause game developers to make sacrifices that they “aren’t willing to make.”
"Charging a flat monthly (or subscription) fee means that we will offer players the game we set out to make, and the one that fans want to play. Going with any other model meant that we would have to make sacrifices and changes we weren't willing to make," Firor said.