Over the last few days, we have shared with you brand new information about Bethesda and Zenimax Online’s The Elder Scrolls Online – which is set for release on PS4, Xbox One, and PC in 2014. On Aug. 22, Nick Konkle, Gameplay Designer at Zenimax, talked with Examiner about the differences between Skyrim and ESO – specifically in terms of gameplay and combat.
The most obvious difference between the two games is that one is a massive multiplayer online title and the other is not. That aside, Skyrim and The Elder Scrolls Online differ in several ways.
“The obvious starting point was we were going to put other people in the game, which is a persistent world,” Konkle said.
He continued to share that the main difference between the two games comes down to how the game is played and the combat system. Though combat will be handled differently, Skyrim fans will find it familiar.
“I think the main differences are between the gameplay and combat. Skyrim revolves around picking the correct spell or weapon for the situation. You would pause to do this and you can’t do that on a server. You can’t have a bunch of people pausing at the same time. So the main change we made to the combat was giving you that loadout bar of your favorites.”
Aside from these changes, the development team wanted Elder Scrolls Online to feel “very similar to Skyrim both in the combat and the content.”
When asked about how the development team wanted to make The Elder Scrolls Online differ from other titles of the franchise, Konkle shared that the main thing Zenimax wanted to add was scale, other players and to deliver a true Elder Scrolls experience.
Of course, the release of Skyrim influenced ESO and the team adapted elements of Skyrim into their game.
“It’s interesting because the development of this game was going on parallel to the development of Skyrim, and we knew that. We always knew that when Skyrim came out, that it was going to have a massive impact on how people perceived the Elder Scrolls game. It of course, ended up happening that way. It came out and had all of these really compelling new elements to it and we had to adapt our game for that."
He continued to add, "up until that point, the main thing we wanted to add was scale and other players. Outside of that, we just wanted to make this feel like an Elder Scrolls game. I think that was the main challenge because back in 2006, what was an MMO and what was an Elder Scrolls game were very far apart.
Recently, MMOs have started to come close to unifying the genres with online RPGs. I think it’s exciting to be a part of moving that together because there isn’t any reason why online games shouldn’t be as great as consoles games are now. The technology is there and is catching up. I think just trying to get it to feel legitimately like an Elder Scrolls game, when so many people are playing it, was the main thing we wanted to bring,” Konkle concluded.
Earlier this week Zenimax discussed the impact the success The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim had on the development and expectations of The Elder Scrolls Online.