Thursday, 15 June 2017 11:41

REVIEW: The Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind (Xbox One)

Written by Keith Dang
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Welcome back to Vvardenfell. The Elder Scrolls Online Morrowind is a reimaging or an old classic, it brings a MMO factor to the title. The Elder Scrolls Online launched in 2014 and it was a well done massively multiplayer online role-playing game or what you would call a (MMORPG).

When you eventually get going in the game for the first time, you will create a character to play with and enjoy investing your time in. You can have up to eight characters on the server so you can experiment with all the classes if you like. The character customization section is full on as you would expect from The Elder Scrolls, and you can alter your character in every which way or form. When you're happy with your character, you'll start your adventure. Once you start, you will begin by doing a tutorial, which is a good thing if you are a new player to the franchise. Your newly created character will be escaping with a group of slaves before being dropped off at Seyda Neen.

Playing the game is easy to get used to if you are a veteran of Elder Scroll games and  first timers are eased into it with the tutorial. You can choose from two views in which you can play the game in. First person or third person. I preferred the behind-the-character view (third-person) as you can see if something is chasing you. This also gives you a sort of 360 view of your environment. As you gain abilities, you can easily map them to buttons or to your control pad for easy access when you are in combat. Your meters are clearly visible etc (magic, Health, Stamina) and navigating the map is easy as well. You can also track your quests you're tasked with, with the direction arrow on your control pad and cycle though your quests on the fly.

Morrowind Screenshot5
There is also a bar on the top of your screen that will show you which way you need to head to travel to your current quest. As you play, the game will also assist you and gives you button prompts for those times you're trapped by displaying what button you need to push to get out of it. The item and inventory menu are well organised and it’s not hard to find items, equip armour and equipment. As you find items and equipment, you're shown their positive and negative stats compared to the gear you are currently wearing. Allocating attribute points is easy as there are only three categories which you can add them to, Magic Health and stamina. Skill points can be morphed into better stats and different abilities.

Graphics wise this game is gorgeous, you can see the grittiness of the cities and the buildings, but once you're in the wilderness, the landscapes are stunning. From the water lapping the shoreline to the trees, bushes and grass, to the pier and tavern lights shining in the night. The landscapes in the background are also stunning, especially when you look at them when the sun is setting or rising. The texture are so detailed, it's borderline realistic. The detail in the armour and the weaponry are super detailed, you can see the joints in the pates of steel, which is what I like about it, they don’t look like they are brand new but instead all buffed up. The sounds are very immersive and it will suck you into to the world, from the hustle and bustle of the cities to the sounds of the wind and the wildlife in the wilderness. The sounds are brilliantly done and work well when you're casting spells or using your weapons when attacking enemies.

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Questing I found fun and very addictive and can mostly be done solo, but being a MMO you would think that solo’ing a quest is hard. Not in Morrowind, you don’t have to be grouped to complete a quest. For example, if your quest is to kill a monster all you have to do is hit the monster once and you will get credit for the kill and be able to loot the quest item. I found that I was constantly exploring without a horse even though I had one, as you can find random items in nooks and crannies thoughout the world. Crafting items is abundant as well as the occasional chest that you find lying around, but you have to be good at lock picking. I did have a issue with the limited amount of items you can carry, as most often than not I would loot everything and pick up everything only to find when I had a good item drop I had a full inventory. But I guess that teaches you good item management I suppose. Speaking of crafting items, you can find crafting stations in most of the major cities as well as a crafting quest when you start that teaches you how to craft items.

NPC (Non Player Characters) interaction is great as they mostly speak to you so you're not just reading dialog text all the time, though I did find myself reading the text faster than the NPC was speaking. In the towns you still have the option to steal items or to attack guards, but there is an option where you can switch this off so you don't kill innocent people. Once you attack a guard, you will have a bounty on your head, though it will drop over time, but if you are caught, you can either run, pay the fine or attack. The game also has an in-game achievement system which is totally different and won’t add to your trophies or gamer score. Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind carries the standard MMO expansion expectations with an all-new character class. The Warden is a hybrid class, built to deal damage, heal, and even tank depending on how you build out your character. You can have a bear companion with this class when you can command to aid you in battle. You can have pets that just tag along which don’t do much aside from keeping you company. There is also an in game currency system, known as crowns, which lets you purchase in game DLC.

Morrowind Screenshot2

There are PVP modes in Morrowind and it’s as easy as joining a queue, but you will be in for a long wait before you get to play. The activity finder is a great way to find multiplayer type things to do like Battle Grounds, Alliance War and Dungeon Finder. Once you join the queue it’s just a matter of waiting for the game to find a slot that you can fill. There are a few modes you can play such as Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag and Domination. Once you've hit level 10, you can then participate in those modes. Before you enter the battle you need to select what you want to do in the battle ETC (Damage, Healer or be a Tank)

Final Thoughts

Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind is a fantastic game where you can lose yourself for hours just by wondering around. If you don’t like or get bored of a certain area, you can get on your mount or do what I did and just walk everywhere. The quests and things you find are abundant and I found I never got bored. Levelling up is fun as well as the PVP and the multiplayer aspect of it. If you are a fan of the Elder Scrolls, defiantly give this a go.

Additional Info

  • Review Score: 4.0 / 5.0
  • Release Date: Out Now
  • Platform: PC, PS4, XBOX ONE
  • Developer: Bethesda Game Studios
  • Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
  • Genre: Action / Adventure, Role-Playing