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Give Me a Reason to Play in 2024

  • peacenote
    OP, I really appreciate the style of your writing and how your post unfolds. I had a different and yet similar experience as I evolved through the game, although I perhaps was around a bit longer since I started in beta. Also, my order was Quests -> group PVE -> PvP. :)

    I also agree that rewards for time spent in game, and rewards for completing (and re-completing!) challenging content, need to improve.

    Anyway, I've worked my way through multiple MMOs, and I also feel that part of what you are describing is the actual evolution of an MMO as it grows and expands. When it starts, those who start around the same time are all learning together. Everyone is engaged, and willing to try new content, and has enough friends around that it's easy to be tempted to try something new for the first time - be it PvP, a dungeon... whatever. When new content is released, you haven't necessarily "finished" the old content yet.

    But the longer the MMO exists, the greater the skill gap and time spent in game between new players and veteran players. New players are overwhelmed by the choices and content, and veteran players have done and repeated everything 17 times over. As veteran players, we look fondly on times past, just as we might look back on our childhoods, and it's difficult for the devs to compete with those rose-colored glasses. It's also really difficult for the devs to keep pumping out content that continues to attract outside players while engaging the veteran folks the way they were engaged when they first started playing. Veteran players want brand new content that feels fresh and different but also want everything they have grown to enjoy in the game, a feature list much greater than when ESO began, to be updated and expanded. Players get used to a new set of motifs, new leads, new story content, new companions, new houses, new dungeons, new trials... it never ends.

    A lot of what you said resonates (especially regarding AwA and how problematic it was for replayability) but for some things I do have a different take. Unless you're talking about pre-Crown store, I don't completely agree that the rewards we get are not valuable because of the content in the Crown store. My character can only use one of almost anything at a time... skins, mounts, pets, titles... (dyes of course are a different story), so I don't quite get the point of saying a title is a bad reward because you can only wear one. I remember when, years ago, I missed buying the ice horse, and rushed to buy it when it arrived in a flash sale.... only to realize years later that things are always on rotation and they always come back. But purchasing that ice horse didn't take away from my enjoyment of earning indriks in game. I love the indriks. :) It is almost impossible for ZOS to make a "better tier" of cosmetics for rewards earned in game that appeal to all. Even the Apex mounts are abhorred by those who dislike flashy. Personally I think what matters is having enough variety for in-game paths, and, unfortunately for ZOS, this variety needs to be type of rewards and also type of content. Only give skins for hard achievements and people will be upset. Only give skins for easy achievements and people will be upset. But I think that the whole community needs to understand that it's not a realistic goal to collect all cosmetics, and due to the fact that we all have different tastes, it is possible that something you really want will be available via an avenue that is annoying or unattainable for you personally. That in and of itself shouldn't devalue the rewards we do get. I just don't agree that because we can buy skins or mounts, the skins and mounts we earn in game aren't meaningful or good rewards. They are all different. I do agree, though, that if a title or skin or pet or mount is a sole reward, that it isn't a decent motivator, especially if one isn't interested in such things, and we need more than just cosmetics as rewards.

    I also disagree that content should self-fund. As someone else pointed out, the whole model of an MMO is to encourage you to do other activities (preferably, time consuming ones) to fund the activities you enjoy most. Typically that's assumed to be end game raiding and PvP in an MMO, which gets a little confusing in ESO since this game has more players than usual who aren't interested in that content, but still. You can't just jump into an end game trial on day two of playing ESO and be successful and that is by design. To a point, just simply completing the content is its own reward, as groups of 12 can spend months trying to clear a trial or complete a specific achievement.

    I do think that ZOS really shot themselves in the foot with implementing AwA and then adding a new class essentially back-to-back. Because now they've set the expectation that when you continue to play, you should have enough new content to keep you occupied each release even if you have only one character, whereas before, the game was built to encourage the idea that you can start anew on a new character and have a whole host of challenges, to keep the game going. We got new character slots with new classes for a reason. But AwA devalued a new class as new content for many, and greatly reduced the revitalization that a new class often brings to an MMO.

    Some of finding something new to do is on the players themselves. I'll wake up one day and say "you know, I'm gonna make a new PvP build on my Warden, that should be fun" or "I'm going to update my Magplar's DPS build so I can bring it to trials as a fill" or "I wonder if I can solo this new dungeon with Isobel... I'm going to try!" Even without character specific achievements, I leveled a support Arcanist and a DPS Arcanist and kept myself occupied this year doing that, while working on achievements in Blackrose Prison and working with my trial group in vCR + 3.

    If you aren't motivated to log in and can't think of anything to try or tackle in all of Tamriel, you really may be burned out. Until a player has mastered all classes and all roles in all content, theoretically there are always avenues to explore. Expecting ZOS to generate enough story content, or enough new functionality, to fill up all of one's playtime each year just isn't realistic in a game of this size and scope. I agree that some of the formulas feel stale, and ZOS would do well to think of ways to combat this, but I think some of this is just the problem of a mature MMO.
    My #1 wish for ESO Today: Decouple achievements from character progress and tracking.
    • Advocate for this HERE.
    • Want the history of this issue? It's HERE.
  • Smokehit
    Soul Shriven
    To OP- I’m in the same boat for a different reason. I don’t mind there not being “incentive” because it is a fun game and possibly the best game of its kind currently. But the reason I can’t bring myself to play anymore is because of performance issues with pvp servers in Cyrodiil, Imperial city. The pvp in this game in my opinion is the the most fun aspect of the game since pve content is mind numbingly easy.

    Im tired of seeing new content when all of there content runs laggy and under performs. I think they should fix what they have, not continue to add to it.

    I would resubscribe to ESO plus if they game played smoothly in pvp even if top end potions and food buffs out costed my rewards
    Edited by Smokehit on March 1, 2024 5:38PM
  • Shadowbinder7
    ZOS developers if you happen across this thread please make sure you’ve read through and consider what people are saying… don’t just monetise please, I appreciate profits are important but the crown store is such a boring flat money sink… focus more on rebalancing and improving gameplay, enriching the gaming experience, adding more lore, revamping/refreshing pvp. This will net more long term profit in the future anyway by keeping a larger growing player base and not boring off the seasoned players.

    Please don’t let eso stagnate and fall flat until it’s shut off. I can speak especially for the lore lovers, more so than those who simply play it for the MMO aspect or pvp aspect… none of us want this despite the games many faults and room for improvement
  • Neoauspex
    Dune not out yet
  • TaSheen
    Neoauspex wrote: »
    Dune not out yet

    Eh. Not interested. I read the entire Dune saga many years ago now. It was.... okay. I really don't have any interest in it as a game.

    But even in books, the heroes make mistakes, and there isn't always a happy ending.

    PC NA, PC EU (non steam)- three accounts, many alts....
  • DreamyLu
    Not sure if it can be of any help, but me for example, ESO isn't my main game and I must say, as a back up game, it's perfect. It did teach me a new way to play: full freedom!
    I don't care about achievements and do only what I like to do based on mood of the moment. Only one rule: if no fun, no do (the word "grinding" doesn't exist anymore). It's sooooooooooo good!
    However, of course, it's possible only because I have a main game in which I play "normal".

    It was really a new experience such an approach of a game for me, and I so much enjoy it that if ESO should stop some day, I would search for another game allowing to keep a "holiday place" aside of my main. :D
    Edited by DreamyLu on April 12, 2024 3:58AM
    I'm out of my mind, feel free to leave a message... PC/NA
  • huntgod_ESO
    This abusively time wasting anniversary event is certainly giving me reason to not want to play or at least to not support ZoS. Wish I'd not subbed for the year so I could let my sub lapse...doubt I will do a year sub again, even though I've done it since they offered the year sub.
    --- HuntGod ---
    Officer of the Unrepentant
  • Urvoth
    Stamicka wrote: »
    LunaFlora wrote: »
    have you tried the infinite Archive?
    it got added with update 40 and is a new type of arena that has bosses from all over the game like Lord Warden, The Serpent, and Prior Thierric.

    Yes, infinite archive wasn't my style really. It takes a long time for the enemies to ramp up and I don't find any of the class sets particularly useful. I prefer my arenas to have a clear beginning and end rather than testing me to see how long I survive.

    When there's a clear beginning and end, speed is what matters and I feel good about seeing my time improve as I familiarize myself with the arena. Speed hardly matters in infinite archive and I have no desire to engage in a tank test, especially without good rewards. The idea was cool on paper, but I really wanted to see something more like a modern version of Maelstrom (Vateshran doesn't count it is nothing like vMA).

    I was really hoping it would be an actual dungeon crawler instead of just an infinite arena. It really had so much potential but ZOS took the lesser effort route like usual unfortunately.
  • N00BxV1
    Stamicka wrote: »

    I lose more gold and resources than I gain doing what I enjoy in this game. PvP/BGs require that I use expensive tripots, then I don't really get rewarded for participating in these activities. I also have to make builds which can also be costly. Doing trial progressions require potions and builds as well which also cost gold. This is completely unacceptable, I should gain more than I lose doing activities in this game.


    I also experience the same problem and completely agree that the majority of activities in the game do not reward enough Gold/Currencies/Resources.

    I enjoy Tanking Random Veteran Dungeons with random people using the Activity Finder. It's pretty much the only thing that I do every time that I play the game these days. And it literally costs me more than I make each day just running these dungeons. When I run out of "good potions" I then have to use "trash potions" which affects my performance, or I just logout which surely can't be what the company wants. I help dozens of people with their dungeons every time that I play the game but it just costs me more than I am rewarded...

    I do not enjoy running around mindlessly picking random flowers nor do I have the time to do so. And unfortunately I'm not in a Trading Guild because I don't have much to sell to other players since dungeon gear is bound to group...

    The only activity that rewards a reasonable amount of Currency/Resources is Crafting Writs. And it only takes about 2 minutes to do a set of Crafting Writs (on PC with automation addons) to earn ~5K Gold plus other Resources. But it takes several hours running Veteran Dungeons and selling everything that I loot to vendors to even come close to earning that much Gold. How is this okay and fair!? (It is not fair.)

    We need to be rewarded more Gold/Currencies/Resources from all activities in the game. And not just being forced to doing Crafting Writs or depending on a Trading Guild for income.
  • Anifaas
    I cannot find a reason to make this my main game in 2024 because I feel as though there are 1) too many unaddressed bugs and 2) there’s not enough engaging content. Most of what new chapters offer is so painfully easy that there is no challenge for me at all. It just seems like each chapter is about collecting new cosmetics, and the stories are very safe, bland and repetitive.

    However, I find ESO makes for a great second or third game alongside of a AAA game like World of Warcraft. Playing WoW for the challenge, the exquisite dungeons and raids and the epic battlegrounds is really, really fun but can be tiring. That’s when I flip to ESO for a nice casual, cosy experience. And the best part about ESO is now that I have all the things that I desire I don’t need to buy anything more or subscribe. I feel like I have the best of both worlds.
  • Neoauspex
    TaSheen wrote: »
    Neoauspex wrote: »
    Dune not out yet

    Eh. Not interested. I read the entire Dune saga many years ago now. It was.... okay. I really don't have any interest in it as a game.

    Narrative completely aside, my biggest issue with ESO is that no matter how big the world is exploring it always feels cheap because of fast travel. Exploring Arrakis appears like it will be... challenging.
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