Waiting for ZeniMax Online Studios to give you a more in-depth look at the Elder Scrolls Online? Well, get a load of this.

Posted today, the nine-and-a-half-minute-long “Introduction to The Elder Scrolls Online” intersperses in-game footage with developer commentary and does more to tantalize players than all previous PR efforts combined. Among the juicy tidbits talked about are:

  • You can go anywhere, whether it’s a territory from a previous Elder Scrolls game or somewhere you’ve never been before. This is emphasized by the scenic vistas of Skyrim, Morrowind, and Cyrodiil seen throughout the video.
  • Combat style is very Elder Scrolls-ish — left click to attack, right click to block, with power attacks and special abilities mixed in.
  • Although you’ll have a character class, it’s more of a starting point than anything. As you progress, you’ll be able to choose perks to let you customize your character further — even to letting you potentially become a werewolf or vampire.
  • Quests are fueled by exploration, rather than rigid theme-park-iness. As Paul Sage puts it, it’s “not what do I do next, it’s which one of these things do I do next?”
  • You’ll be remembered by NPCs when you perform heroic deeds for them. “Wait.. I know you!”

But words can do only so much. Check out the video above to get your first real look at what’s shaping up to be an amazing game.

Jason Winter has held several positions in the tabletop and video-gaming industry since 1996, including writer, editor, marketing coordinator, and game designer. He's the former editor of Beckett Massive Online Gamer and almost considers himself competent in PvP. In addition to his work with Gamebreaker.tv, he also blogs about video games at http://jasonwinter.wordpress.com.
  • http://www.facebook.com/brianoconnor27 Brian Ø’Connor


  • http://www.facebook.com/rammur65 Roger Means

    all i can say all the doubt i may have had is now gone lol.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Joey-Bard/751967449 Joey Bard

    What is this third person! First person is the only way to play Elder Scrolls.

    • http://www.facebook.com/rammur65 Roger Means

      heh so not true i play in both lol i hear they will have both in this also

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1723022436 David Bell

    Awwww… skeet skeet skeet skeet

  • http://twitter.com/QuietNine Quiet

    wow. i am SO stoked for this game, but… that was some of the worst combat animation and movement ive ever seen (like, NWN-mmo bad). everyone looked very stiff. hopefully they continue to work on this in development.

  • michael fountain

    im still skeptical 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1339406775 Matthew Riddle

    The title of this article felt a little misleading, because although the game is shown, we never actually see someone play the game, ie: my definition of gameplay. We don’t see the left click attack, hold charge attack, right click block, although we see a bunch of characters attacking monsters.

    This is very much a trailer, but I argue there isn’t any gameplay at all.

    • Duckman33

       Quite obviously from your comment you didn’t watch the video, or the entire video. There’s combat gameplay footage as well as group gameplay footage, etc.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1339406775 Matthew Riddle

        I watched 90% of the video. The majority of footage is not even from the player’s view, but pans of combat between multiple players and a monster or monsters.

        Maybe your definition of “gameplay” footage is video of combat, but my definition of gameplay is video of someone playing the game, either in 3rd person view or 1st person view. In the video, you see very little, if any of this.

        • http://www.facebook.com/AlexanderKristianArmstrong Alexander Kristian Armstrong

          You do see gameplay, it is from 3rd person view though.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Smursta Fredrik Eriksson Flink

    So this is Rift and GW2s lovechild? nothing new.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=731108011 Andrew June

    Ebonheart Pact Represent

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=627845789 Joel Colby Debord

    Looks Great.  Just hope they don’t make the same mistakes other mmo’s have made.  I’ll most likely be checking this game out.

  • HartsHope

    shit just got REAL !

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=754168227 Len Hobbel

       what got real? poo  its always been real…hmm

  • Sharuko

    Looks amazing, and with Firor running the show I am at ease.  Still not going to hype myself up.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jonathan.hornsby.7 Jonathan Hornsby

      You’ve finally moved on from dry humping Tera? I”m proud of you.

  • Dean Scott

    They lost me at “perks allow you to become a werewolf or a vampire or summon special pets.”

    sigh… the cool thing about becoming supernatural in elder scrolls games is that it usually takes a quest chain to become one or exploring a dungeon and being infected by a supernatural being and then turning into one a few days later.

    not leveling up and spec’ing into a supernatural being…

    edit: it seems also that from that video they are really taking a lot of tips from gw2. I wonder if they will release a construction kit for teso for mods and things like armors and such like the other TES games.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=754168227 Len Hobbel

    I bet i know what WOWIES will say  WOW CLONE….  sigh ROME was a CLONE of WOW right i know….  this does look nice

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=754168227 Len Hobbel

    Did I see a siege  I mean a REAL siege  I have not sieged since Lineage 2  ohh my  thats all lineage 2 had going for it was the massive castle sieges…and insane graphics even to this day Lineage 2 graphics are better then WOW for sure and better then many games…SIEGES though? hmmm

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002038208867 Dan Winborne

    Im a huge elder scrolls fan… and tbh, it looks like garbage. However, theres a silver lining. This will fend off the bro-media gamers and make the community richer for the long run. Im hoping…

  • http://www.facebook.com/frank.hollandsr Frank Holland Sr

    Once you get to level 50 thats when the game really starts….
    Sorry lost me right there, no thanks

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/W76UOX2IDTRMMYTPASSJDLXLRM Bob

      That’s when I stopped listening. If this is going to be the same old Wow style gear treadmill and they ignore the leveling experience or block access to content because of your gear, I’m out. I’ve played that game for years and got tired of it.

    • Morticono

      well, just dont go playing an mmo ;P  Game looks great cant wait ;)

  • Morturion

    Here’s hoping it won’t take an arrow to the knee …

  • http://twitter.com/WadeDMcGinnis Wade D McGinnis

    The second I heard classes my interest dropped and the looming fear of WoW clone kicked in…

  • protrolly

    looks good pay to play or subs is the make or break now

  • Daniel Downs

    I hope the Argonians don’t look that ugly :/

  • http://twitter.com/mrSchwabe Schwabe

    Call me when they make a real Elder Scrolls multiplayer game, and not some WoW clone.
    —signed: an Elder Scrolls fan

  • jayremy

    I worry if the combat wont meet up to the action gameplay expectation that GW2 far under served upon its claim. I really hope there is more of a dodge through movement mechanic, aimed and projectile (physics) based attacks and not so much standing still getting hit and playing rather to a more scripted feel.

    I really like the way Vindictus was designed and would like a more elaborate MMO of that style combat with better class design, more of an open-world content design and more real customization without being a grindy P2W-ish game.

  • DoctorOverlord

    Nice to hear some more details about this game.   It sounds very promising. If they pull this off, it could really help the MMO genre evolve eve further away from the flawed mechanics of the past.
    I had a bit worry when they said  “Level 50 is where the game opens up” but at least PvP is open to all levels.   Maybe they want to avoid all the complaining GW2 has gotten about ‘no-end game’ from people who don’t see it’s not about the level cap it’s about playing the game.  They are defining the end game clearly and maybe they can make it work without the bait-and-switch gameplay seen in other MMOs.

    The mega server does sound interesting.   I wonder if we’ll be able to actually see all characters on the server like one does in EVE or if it clever use of a kind of overlapping servers where you may not be able see all the people that are not in your group.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kevin.cox.5817 Kevin Cox

    i’m reserving all judgement until more information is released. Enough info to at least allow a consumer to make an informed enough decision towards buying or not. 

    As it stands right now, i’m not impressed. 

    Right now the color palette just seems boring and bland when compared to the bright, artistic displays of GW2 or WoW. These games are like books in a sense. The first sentence has to grab the reader. Likewise the look of the game has to jump out at a player and right now it just seems….depressing with a darker color palette though there is definitely more to be seen. 

    Combat appears to be stiff so hopefully the animations get smoothed over but even if they don’t, if it’s as intuitive and as visceral as they’re making it seem, stiff animations may be forgiven. One of my biggest fears comes from their claim that they designed their character models so that hundreds of them can be on screen at once. 
    In an MMO I don’t really care how much I can customize my toon if what I do do to it consistently looks like garbage because they cut down on the poly count. 

    What I do believe they’ll succeed on with no doubt whatsoever is telling a brilliant story. I’ve always loved ES because out of all the fantasy RPGs i’ve played, their lore is the most realistic and the most well thought out. It’s easy to follow and easy to immerse yourself in without having the need to literally be a scholar on the content. This gives me hope that questing in ESO won’t be such a bore like it is in other MMOs (with the exception of GW2 but i’m still skipping text for the most part) but that also depends largely on how well the combat system is executed.

    Right now I see nothing that says it’s worth more than F2P

  • http://twitter.com/kirzanSix Michael Coulombe

    I don’t want to be “that guy” and I usually am completely against “that guy”… but aren’t the models, textures, details really bland/old? It looks like a trailer for an EQ2 expansion. I dunno… I don’t care much about graphics. I just expected Zenimax to blow our minds. And yeah I know it’s very early development, but they wouldn’t go through all the trouble of modeling a bunch of races and armor just for a 9 minutes “trailer”. The base has been laid.

    Now onto combat. Holy shit are they ever going to lean away from 3-hit combo + block for melee? It’s boooooooring!! Specially with games like Dishonored (ZENIMAX AGAIN) and Chivalry who prove that a parry system based on skill and timing is so much more fun and rewarding. “Hey you can block with your 2-hander! but it’s gonna absorb like 10% damage”. NO! I want to block when I have a shield, and timing based skill parries when I “block” with a weapon! Please!

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Brandon-Evans/1603660859 Brandon Evans

      The water looks very similar to Skyrim,  but being an MMO they do have to cut back on the graphics, I have a mid-level gaming pc, used to go all out but have a family now so no more high end rigs.  I also work in computer repair and most people that come in wanting to play computer games don’t have a machine that can run them.  The more demanding the graphics the smaller the customer base gets.  That being said the game is a year from launch and still far from done.  Also graphics are important to the gamers, no doubt, but game play, mechanics etc. are the game, graphics is just the paint.    

    • StigtriX

      I actually think it looks rather promising :)

      The styles is there, there’s no overdone bloom etc. , the models look good and colour pallet is awesome! I was disappointed with SWTOR and GW2, so I really hope this will become a better experience. The biggest plus is that the graphics engine is NOT HeroEngine. Zenimax only used it for testing:”Think of HeroEngine as a whiteboard for us – a great tool to get some ideas in the game and start looking at them while the production engine was in development”.-  Matt Firor, game director Zenimax Online Studios

  • http://www.facebook.com/miljan.stanojevic.503 Miljan Stanojevic

    MEGA Server!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_JD5RIAPTFFZFIF3DCNYVVG7NIQ Kyle Bohannon

    ive never played any of the elder scrolls games. ive seen videos of them, i should give them a whirl

    • http://twitter.com/Stone_LX9 Stone LX9

      Never played an Elder Scrolls game?  Go now, pick up Skyrim! Do it!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Brandon-Evans/1603660859 Brandon Evans

    The biggest thing I see from here is combat mechanics being a little bland, no action bars and its not like your going to be able to pause an MMO to select another skill or weapon.  On the other hand I can see this being released on the PS3 (360 if they want to spend the dime fixing network issues).  Which the only way any MMO is going to match or exceed WoW is to be available on console.  I’m not saying this will happen but the gameplay mechanics sure seem like they would fit just fine on a controller.  There are a lot more people with PS3’s then gaming PCs.  Just sayin.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jonathan.hornsby.7 Jonathan Hornsby

      If by action bar you mean a hot bar with skill slots, that is in the game. Five slots for class skills, a slot for an “ultimate,” and a “R” slot for items.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Kyle-Eggers/100000868131517 Kyle Eggers

    Elder Scrolls doesn’t have set classes, that is the best thing about the games, and the breaker for the MMO.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jonathan.hornsby.7 Jonathan Hornsby

      Incorrect. Skyrim doesn’t have set classes; the Elder Scrolls
      series does however. Go play Oblivion or Morrowind if you’ve forgotten.


      Back in the older games you had set classes that were in
      effect a short list of preferred skills, called major skills, and only these
      skills counted for progression. For example the old school Sorcerer (a personal
      favorite since Morrowind due to the class’ flavor text) had the then six
      schools of magic and heavy armor as major skills, with all others demoted to
      minors. No weapon skills, no crafting skills, no enchanting or sneaking or lock
      picking. You could still do this things of course, and in theory master those
      skills. However you could only level by using magic and heavy armor. Only ranks
      in those skills counted.


      You had to specifically opt into a custom class, and even
      then all you did was pick a combat preference (warrior, mage, stealth) that
      gave a minor boost to your stats (the old games also had stats like strength and
      intelligence) relating to that role, and then chose your own major skills from
      a list.


      Point is having  class
      system in TESO isn’t a deal breaker for long time fans, and in fact quite few
      of those fans consider the “only health/magicka/stamina” and “just use all of
      the skills” classless system of Skyrim to have been unnecessarily dumbing down
      the game. In this regard TESO is a welcomed return to form. After all a hallmark
      of the RPG is making character choices that mater; not being completely lacking
      in tough choices and able to just freely do anything you want. Being able to
      make any kind of character you want to play is cool, having one character that
      is a master of everything is not.

    • http://twitter.com/Stone_LX9 Stone LX9

      Skyrim didn’t have classes, but the Elder Scrolls has had classes in the lore for 20 years.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Ruel/1460327749 Mike Ruel

    Mega server should be good…so long as the mega server doesn’t crash on launch.

  • Leith MacLean

    i hope the combat is more intense like guild wars 2 or even mount and blade combat, combat like that makes the game way more interesting!

  • Morticono

    Looks great this game;)

  • Orlando Jimenez

    Its a Good game. But it sucks that once you choose your race you stick with your race. You can’t go and do different missions that are not involved in your race. 

  • Orlando Jimenez

    Hopefully it won’t be like Vindictus

  • http://twitter.com/Nathiest Nathiest

    Sounds great, looks terrible.  

  • http://twitter.com/Thaguf Thaguf

    Looks great, my goal would to become a werewolf. :D

  • http://www.facebook.com/editapps.php#!/profile.php?id=745604179 Rsm3180

    after the GW2 disappointment and the way blizz has been making WoW a cake walk thereby makeing the community worthless soulstealing shit, then there was Rift with it’s “wtf is this talent/soul system and you can no haz mods!” in the beginning; I am way too mistrusting of any new MMO made available. I want smooth gameplay animation and action systems with a solid friendly,non deuch baggery community. Graphics don’t have to be amazingly mindblowing. MMO’s are social, there must be repurcustions for your actions. I personally DON’T want a any race any class any ability style build system. A caster is a caster, a melee is melee, etc.  when you try blurring the lines it fucks up  everything. TESO shows promise in some areas and looks like shit in others, I will remain hesitantly optimistic. We shall see.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001292538879 Wesley Trimble

    did I just watch the GW2 MMO Manifesto video?