Elder Scrolls Online AMA Answers Questions On Combat
The Elder Scrolls Online team at ZeniMax has released an “Ask Me Anything” explaining in more detail the combat that players can expect in the new MMO. The bi-weekly series encourages fans to ask them, well… anything they might be curious about pertaining to the eagerly awaited game. Past installments have been more about factions and lore, but this week we get to the real meat of gameplay and find out how our characters will move around, attack, heal, and gear up.
Perhaps the most interesting bit of the Elder Scrolls Online post involves a question about the “holy trinity”. Will we need dedicated tanks and healers when doing a dungeon run? The response was cheeky, as they just cut and paste an email they had gotten from an internal tester. While the tester did miss having a dedicated tank, his group of four was able to take down the bosses in the Fungal Grotto.
“With four players making independent choices in abilities and gear, three of the four made builds that defied the standard templates—and yet felt perfectly viable in actual play. The players were each able to build a character to their own taste with class abilities as a supplement, rather than the rigid defining aspect to the character, and have effective characters.” Elder Scrolls Online AMA March 11
Basically, they want players to play the way they want with the team makeup that they want to play with.
Healers: Let Them Wear Plate
So how does this work in practice with Elder Scrolls Online? In our brains, warriors should always without fail wear heavy armor, and healers should have lighter armor that is full of magic (or magicka) right? Well, yes and no. You can mix and match your armor as you see fit. You can make your own fighting healer with heavy armor or a magical warrior with lighter armor. Trippy.
The same rules apply to weapons too. When asked if a healer could use a greatsword, the answer was “Yes!” kind of… “Each weapon has a unique set of abilities that can be unlocked as your skill increases.” If you are a healer, you have healing spells but your weapon has its own spells associated with it. If a healer is using a greatsword, that weapon might not have healing spells but they can still use their own spells. But get this: you can switch weapons. “You can equip a back-up weapon and swap between the two in combat. So you can have one loadout with a restoration staff and healing abilities, and then swap mid-combat to a greatsword with damage abilities.”
Other questions involved the soft targeting system, which seems pretty typical of an MMO, and leveling up with PvP (you can). One person wanted to know how to stop people from “stealing kills and XP,” and it seems that guy has nothing to worry about. “There is no reason to steal kills. We grant XP to both people for killing, and we have a looting system which makes it so both parties benefit from kills.” Good to know, but no surprise there, as other online games have gone away from a tagging system too.
As a fan of the series and an avid MMO player, I eat up any Elder Scrolls Online information I can get. Right now I am daydreaming about my greatsword wielding caster/healer who will be able to dodge mele attacks. Jack of all trades? Master of Nothing?