[TSW] [ESO] Tokyo Certified and Final(?) ESO Beta Weekend
TSW was running a weekend promotion where scenario runs netted 50% more “oreos” that one uses at the Council of Venice vendors. I still needed to get to 80 for my Tokyo certification, so I popped in over the weekend and ran the Hotel trying out a new build that’s a play on my build that I use in nightmare dungeons for AE heavy fights, but with a bit less damage and a bit more self-healing in the passives. It uses an Assault Rifle instead of a Blade, so it’s got a lot more of the whole “reach out and touch someone” going for it.
I finished the run with 13/15 survivors alive. It was due to a bad decision on my part — the “juggernaut” was the 2nd random event and I spent far too much time killing it instead of protecting my survivors. Ah well. I still ended up with a total of 89 oreos after the run, so I had the 80 I needed for the cert. I went and bought that, watched the cutscenes that followed, and now I’m ready for Tokyo to open up. I also got the 10.1 custom belt as the quest reward, which is a slight improvement over my 10.0 custom belt, so. . . . saved myself the 20 bullion for an upgrade later, I suppose. All for a whopping +14 to my attack rating. Oooooh.
On the ESO front, it was their final beta weekend. At least, I’m pretty sure it was the final one. Anyway, they opened it up as though everyone had pre-ordered the Imperial Edition, so one could now create a character of any race in any faction, as well as creating an Imperial. They also featured their new “streamlined” tutorial and the ability to skip the tutorial and simply start in your main city at level 3 if you so chose. I of course had to create an Imperial (or 4) and also muck about with skipping and not skipping the tutorial, as well as making race/faction combos that weren’t part of the original vision of the game. You could also buy a horse for 1 gold, but it wasn’t really that fast (only a 15% speed boost) and I was always hopping off the harvest, then having to take the time to re-mount, so overall it really didn’t seem to be any faster to have it than not. Maybe if I were simply running across a zone and not stopping every 10 feet to harvest. . . . .
Imperials appear to be designed as a tanking race. Racial bonuses are for the 1H + Shield weapon line, then also include health regeneration, armor increase, and total health boost. Which is not to say that any class/play-style can’t benefit from these things, but it does appear that it would be “that much more” for tanking. I ended up trying out a Nightblade as a stealthy dual wielder, which worked quite well. I also tried a tanking Sorcerer in heavy armor and using the sword-n-board. It also worked well, but was kind of overkill defensively when taking the Lightning Form defensive buff into account. Also, while 1H + Shield has taunts in it, it seems to be a single-target line more than anything, while part of tanking is the ability to pick up adds, so in the future, I’m thinking that any tank characters I make will need to use the weapon-swap ability gained at level 15 to be able to change back and forth between the styles. 2H for AE trash/adds and the 1H + Shield for single-target bosses perhaps?
Anyway, as before, I really just dinked around since everything will be wiped for launch. One thing the new tutorial has that I didn’t like was that your only option to “arm yourself!” was with a sword. Granted, the drop rates of other weapons from the easy mobs in the tutorial was much higher than before, but it was still annoying to not be able to start the game with my preferred weapon for a character, and sometimes make it all the way out of the tutorial without getting that “right drop” and having to craft one with an alt and pass it through the bank.
On the bright side, one can very easily make it to level 4 in the tutorial now (even with the entire skipped room where you used to climb ramps to get through/out of the mines), as opposed to starting at level 3 when skipping it. On the other hand, you’ll be level 7 if you go back and do the starter areas regardless of whether you start them at level 3 or level 4, so it really doesn’t mean anything. Really, the only reason to do the tutorial now is to get all the lockpicks in the barrels and baskets and urns. But, with that said, it still makes a lot of sense to run down to the docks from where you start and then go back and do the starter islands. Sure, they rebalanced the area around the cities to be doable at level 3-7, but it still felt more like it “should” to go back and do the starter islands 1st. Ebonheart Pact starts you way on the other side of the city from the docks, so it’s easy to get distracted by the quests in between, but Aldmeri Dominion starts you in a boat at the docks and the Daggerfall Covenant is at the top of the stairs that head down to the docks, so for those 2 factions it’s easy enough to go back without distractions. Too bad the game itself doesn’t really point you that direction. . . .
As other have also noted, there were a ton of phasing bugs this time around also. They prevented advancement in the Daggerfall Covenant on Behtnik Island and could prevent advancement in the Ebonheart Pact if you chose to defend the fort instead of the docks in Bal Foyen. They also affected a side quest in Aldmeri Dominion, but at least didn’t prevent advancement for them. And of course if you defended the docks in the Ebonheart Pact you moved on to Stonefalls without incident also. I’m hoping that these bugs will be resolved before the game launches for real in 2 weeks, else there are going to be a lot of very unhappy people.
Even so, I’m still looking forward to actually playing the game and not simply “dinking around” killing time until my progress won’t be wiped.