Home Gaming Bethesda drops The Elder Scrolls Online subscription fees

Bethesda drops The Elder Scrolls Online subscription fees

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70

TESO

Try your very best to conceal the shock and surprise that you don’t have – but Bethesda’s Elder Scrolls MMO is dropping its subscription fees. It took a little longer than we’d expected (we gave it six months), it’s finally happened – you’ll no longer have to pay a monthly fee to kill things and carry out fetch quests in Tamriel.

Rumours have of course been floating about for a while that the game would be dropping its subscription fees, but Bethesda’s finally confirmed it. As of March, the game’s getting rebranded as The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited – which includes all the extra game content released to date.

It won’t be wholly free-to-play – you’ll still have to buy the base game obviously. The same will be true of the console versions of the MMO, which will be out on PS4 and Xbox One in June this year. You will, however, still need active PlayStation Plus or Xbox Live subscriptions to be able to play.

Those who like throwing money at Bethesda can opt in to pay for something called ESO Plus,which offers members exclusive in-game bonuses, a reoccurring allotment of in-game crowns and access to all downloadable content (DLC) game packs for the duration of membership. Those who’re sporting paid-up subscriptions will have their remaining time converted to ESO plus.

What are these crowns?

“Crowns are a new “virtual currency” being introduced with the release of The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited. They can be used to purchase in-game items, services and content via the Crown Store interface in the game. Crowns are available for purchase separately and are included as part of an ESO Plus membership.”

Here’s how ESO Plus subscriptions will work:

30-day Membership:

  • 1500 crowns at the start of each 30-day membership period
  • Access to all downloadable content for the duration of membership
  • Exclusive character progression bonuses for the duration of membership
    • 10% bonus to experience point gain
    • 10% bonus to crafting research
    • 10% bonus to crafting inspiration gain
    • 10% bonus to gold acquisition

90-day Membership:

  • 4500  crowns at the start of each 90-day membership period
  • Access to all downloadable content for the duration of membership
  • Exclusive character progression bonuses for the duration of membership
    • 10% bonus to experience point gain
    • 10% bonus to crafting research
    • 10% bonus to crafting inspiration gain
    • 10% bonus to gold acquisition

180-day Membership:

  • 9000 crowns at the start of each 180-day membership period
  • Access to all downloadable content for the duration of membership
  • Exclusive character progression bonuses for the duration of membership
    • 10% bonus to experience point gain
    • 10% bonus to crafting research
    • 10% bonus to crafting inspiration gain
    • 10% bonus to gold acquisition

As I said, it’s not at all surprising. From the onset, most thought the MMO was doomed if Bethesda kept insisting on a subscription-based model. So few MMOs are able to exist on the model, with just the exceptional ones – like World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XIV reborn able to convince players to shell out a monthly fee.

It doesn’t help that for the most part, The Elder Scrolls Online is rather generic high fantasy stuff – making that $15 subscription seem like a slap in the face.

What do you think? Are you more likely to play TESO now that they’ve nixed the subscription?

Last Updated: January 22, 2015

70 Comments

  1. RitterBruder

    January 22, 2015 at 07:37

    now they have my attention

    Reply

    • Jaded_Reprobate

      January 22, 2015 at 07:39

      that makes 2 of us

      Reply

      • RitterBruder

        January 22, 2015 at 07:41

        I must say, personally, i have never understood the whole pay subcprition thing, you fork out R500 buck to buy te game and then R200 every bloody month give or take !, its like milking the cow, until ther is no more cow left

        Reply

        • Jaded_Reprobate

          January 22, 2015 at 07:49

          i kinda get the whole paying for the upkeep of servers and such… it does take money to keep that infrastructure going…. but it is a slippery slope…

          Reply

          • Hammersteyn

            January 22, 2015 at 07:51

            Zeni Max slipped it seems

        • HairyEwok

          January 22, 2015 at 08:25

          I won’t mind paid subs IF they do it right. I want my sub to be time based not day-to-day based. Charge me on the time I’m playing not the month that just goes by.

          Reply

          • Lothy

            January 22, 2015 at 12:25

            doubt this will happen. Out of curiosity, is there any game out there that offers a time based model?

        • Lothy

          January 22, 2015 at 12:25

          Well servers, staff and infrastructure need to be paid. So whether is subs or a F2P model, additional money over and above your initial outlay needs to come from somewhere.

          Reply

      • Hammersteyn

        January 22, 2015 at 07:47

        3 😀

        Reply

        • Exalted Overlord Geoffrey Tim

          January 22, 2015 at 07:47

          “3 :D”

          Looks like a dude about to get teabagged.

          Reply

          • Hammersteyn

            January 22, 2015 at 07:48

            Oh snap!

          • Jaded_Reprobate

            January 22, 2015 at 07:49

            LOL!

          • Admiral Chief

            January 22, 2015 at 07:51

            Matty perhaps?

            Oh no, wait, then it would have been #:D (for teh afro)

          • ReaperOfSquirrels

            January 23, 2015 at 08:53

            3 😀
            3:D
            3 🙂
            3:)
            3 😐
            3:|
            3 🙁
            3:(

  2. Mandom (Umar)

    January 22, 2015 at 07:38

    So surprised…NOT. I personally wouldn’t buy this, from everything I’ve seen it looks so……generic and boring…
    http://fc01.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2010/324/7/5/suprised_yoi_by_behappy3-d338k8s.jpg

    Reply

    • Roc

      March 11, 2015 at 19:47

      it does look generic and boring, but luckily I gave it a chance because it is a really good game. Give it a shot, you might like it

      Reply

  3. Lothy

    January 22, 2015 at 07:40

    Sad day for me. I really enjoyed playing TESO and wished that it had succeeded in growing and keeping the paid model. I think the constant bugs and delayed console release was a huge issue resulting in this… Perhaps its time to start playing again and see all the changes.

    Reply

  4. Admiral Chief

    January 22, 2015 at 07:52

    I’d like to give it a bash. How is the latency from SA?

    Reply

    • Charl van der Merwe

      January 22, 2015 at 11:01

      250 ms, the usual to most european servers.

      Reply

      • Admiral Chief

        January 22, 2015 at 12:02

        Kewl, thanks

        Reply

  5. Kensei Seraph

    January 22, 2015 at 07:55

    I might actually give it a try now.
    If I remember come March.

    Reply

    • Hammersteyn

      January 22, 2015 at 08:02

      Depends on the price of the base game. Still not a proper sequel in my eyes

      Reply

      • Kensei Seraph

        January 22, 2015 at 08:14

        Agreed.

        Reply

  6. Hammersteyn

    January 22, 2015 at 07:55

    Ha ha subscription fees for an MMO…
    http://media.giphy.com/media/8bRT73y3u0GMU/giphy.gif

    Reply

  7. Allykhat

    January 22, 2015 at 08:00

    Come June this will be in mah PS4! Been waiting for this announcement since launch of the game!

    Reply

  8. Rock789

    January 22, 2015 at 08:03

    Totally shocked!! Never saw this coming!! I mean, who would’ve even suggested such a thing?! The sheer balls of doing this after everyone believed they were…

    Oh wait, pretty much everyone knew this would happen… Never mind. 😉 🙂

    Reply

  9. Blood Emperor Trevor

    January 22, 2015 at 08:08

    MM-NO.

    Reply

  10. Vogiir

    January 22, 2015 at 08:10

    I used to sub. I dont mind them going to the B2P business model. I just hope the crown system will work like the gem system in guild wars 2.

    Reply

  11. HairyEwok

    January 22, 2015 at 08:11

    I CALLED IT! I friggen called it the day I played the beta. No person in their right mind would pay subs for that gameplay.

    Reply

  12. RinceThis

    January 22, 2015 at 08:20

    So what happens to all the people who have already paid their subs?

    Reply

    • Hammersteyn

      January 22, 2015 at 08:21

      It says in the *ahem* article Those who’re sporting paid-up subscriptions will have their remaining time converted to ESO plus.

      Reply

      • RinceThis

        January 22, 2015 at 08:27

        I was talking about up till now.

        Reply

        • Hammersteyn

          January 22, 2015 at 08:41

          Ah, my mistake

          Reply

    • HairyEwok

      January 22, 2015 at 08:22

      They lose that sub money and if they have a sub still running after the F2P rolls in they get crowns for it.

      Reply

  13. Hammersteyn

    January 22, 2015 at 08:20

    At least the other 12 players still playing might get some company now.

    Reply

    • Shas 'O Norm

      January 22, 2015 at 08:27

      Thought there were only 7.

      Reply

    • Roc

      March 11, 2015 at 19:49

      there are over 400 people in my guild, and at least 100 online at most times. Trust me, it’s a good thing you don’t have the usually over population of dickbags that act like their 12 and turn trade chat into a locker room

      Reply

      • Hammersteyn

        March 12, 2015 at 07:53

        Wow that’s good to know. I want to check this out but I’ll wait for the PS4 release.

        Reply

  14. Captain JJ Saga

    January 22, 2015 at 08:21

    Whether the subs are there or not, it’s still a terrible excuse for an elder scrolls game.
    I won’t bother, the Witcher 3 is coming and there are better MMO’s if that’s your thing.

    Reply

  15. Shas 'O Norm

    January 22, 2015 at 08:27

    I won’t hold my breathe for WoW to do the same. Although I’d like a F2P WoW.

    Reply

    • Galbedir

      January 22, 2015 at 13:10

      Wow is doing so well lately on their current payment model, I doubt there will be any change for years.

      Reply

    • Roc

      March 11, 2015 at 19:50

      wow just announced they are offering a token system

      Reply

  16. schitsophrenic-toothbrush

    January 22, 2015 at 08:30

    Hmmm I wonder what in-game items can be purchased with crowns? Will the non-plus members be able to obtain in game “crowns” without purchasing them? I am not the biggest fan of purchasing a game and still have to spend money on in-app purchases.

    Reply

  17. Ottokie

    January 22, 2015 at 08:36

    Just a bit to late, the TERA addiction already has my soul 😛

    Reply

  18. Captain JJ Saga

    January 22, 2015 at 08:39

    Bethesda really went and screwed Elder Scrolls up with this one.

    Reply

    • Roc

      March 11, 2015 at 19:51

      I disagree. I’ve been playing elder scrolls since daggerfall and I am a huge fan of the series. All of the lore is in the game, the gameplay is just different and its set 1000 years before skyrim. If you are the type of person with a short attention span that skips cutscenes and doesn’t read lore books then you will not enjoy this game. If you like to read all of the little pieces of lore and books scattered around then you will be in heaven

      Reply

  19. UltimateNinjaPandaDudeGuy

    January 22, 2015 at 08:41

    Played the beta and it bored the living hell out of me. Bleh make it F2P and I might try again.

    Otherwise I am just waiting for the next SP TES game.

    Reply

  20. Schalk Engelbrecht

    January 22, 2015 at 09:14

    With the announcement TES6: Argonia they probably realised the game won’t last much longer. Most will still be playing Skyrim until then : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yADrtfAmLTo

    Reply

  21. Wyzak

    January 22, 2015 at 09:21

    Who could have foreseen this? Oh yeah everybody.

    Wait another 6 months and they’ll drop the buy before you play part as well.

    Reply

    • Captain JJ Saga

      January 22, 2015 at 09:24

      I’ll get it if it’s free, otherwise it’s still a waste.

      Reply

      • Wyzak

        January 22, 2015 at 09:41

        I doubt I’ll play it even if it’s free. I played the beta and it was boring as heck. I was hoping for a multi-player elder scrolls game, but it ended up being a MMO with hints of elder scrolls.

        Reply

        • Captain JJ Saga

          January 22, 2015 at 09:47

          I actually won that beta thing twice. Over two following weekends.
          Played it for a few hours just to ensure myself that it’s not just me.
          And it was boring as hell, I cpmpletely agree. And you’re 100% with that it’s just an MMO with hints of Elder Scrolls. They were just trying to coin in on the name, it’s sad and it’s also made me lose a lot of respect for Bethesda.

          Reply

          • Wyzak

            January 22, 2015 at 09:58

            A true elder scrolls game with multi-player would be epic. But this isn’t it.

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 22, 2015 at 09:59

            I feel exactly the same. To be able to have a friend or two run around with you, would be great.

          • Wyzak

            January 22, 2015 at 10:31

            Been waiting for one since I played daggerfall.

          • Lothy

            January 22, 2015 at 12:30

            I dunno hey, I really enjoyed the game. Got to VR12 (before they made it easier) and got max gear. Main reason I stopped was I couldn’t raid during the week due to time restraints. PVP was also really epic!

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 22, 2015 at 13:17

            How many of the other Elder Scrolls games have you played though?

          • Lothy

            January 22, 2015 at 13:27

            some morrowind, oblivion and skyrim

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 22, 2015 at 13:41

            Okay, so you’ve played quite a bit. Most people who seem to like Elder Scrolls Online are people who aren’t big followers of the series. I’m not saying TESO is a bad MMO, I’m saying it’s a bad Elder Scrolls. As far as MMO’s go it’s probably not bad at all, but it just doesn’t feel like Elder Scrolls to me and I’ll always compare it to Morrowind, Oblivion and Skyrim.

          • Lothy

            January 22, 2015 at 13:55

            See the irony is I do find some similarities. But I also went in knowing that this is an MMO 1st and an Elderscrolls game next and because its an MMO I knew that some elements were gonna be changed. I also went in there unbiased and enjoyed the game, I had a auction house guild, did crafting, pvp and eventually the high level content. Maybe what made it better was joining a really good guild with comms. Being able to log online and basically get into a group quickly was awesome.

          • Captain JJ Saga

            January 22, 2015 at 15:10

            Yea, I can see how that could be nice. Well, maybe it’s something I can look into. I love anything open world fantasy and so far the only MMO I’ve been able to get into was Neverwinter, but there were always connection issues.

  22. Ragnar The Vengeful

    January 22, 2015 at 09:28

    I might consider this after I’m done with the Witcher.

    Reply

    • Captain JJ Saga

      January 22, 2015 at 09:31

      I think Witcher 3 is going to be so big that by the time we finish it we can get Elder Scrolls VI

      Reply

  23. Dutch Matrix

    January 22, 2015 at 09:41

    No. Because Skyrim….

    Reply

  24. schitsophrenic-toothbrush

    January 22, 2015 at 10:08

    On the topic of online play..Is destiny worth buying? I have a 4mb line and I don’t know how the online experience will be with the lag and all. I want to buy it for the PS4. Advice will be great!

    Reply

  25. string_slinger

    January 22, 2015 at 11:04

    Yes. Love Tamriel, gonna get 2 copies for me and the wife and get grinding. But, wish I’d known this when it was 40% off on Steam Sale over Christmas…*facepalm*

    Reply

  26. Sageville

    January 22, 2015 at 11:09

    I bought the PC version to give it a go on release with the 30 days free…. that gameplay…. was not worth subscription fees…. very underwhelming….haven’t picked it up since the free days lapsed, but since it’s free now I may give it a go once I’ve cleared my backlog…. so basically never.

    Reply

  27. Ceyber, The Metal Rabbit

    January 22, 2015 at 12:09

    Seems there’s some weight to those TESO 6 rumours… from the wiki (along with a few random articles):

    “The Elder Scrolls VI: Argonia is the sixth installment of the game series The Elder Scrolls. It will be created by Bethesda studios and will be close to the roots of the game series from before. Main story and characters are yet to be confirmed. It will be for Xbox one, PS4 and PC and will be due March 2016.”

    But, you know, take it with a pinch of salt… pile.
    -_-

    Reply

  28. ReaperOfSquirrels

    January 23, 2015 at 08:45

    Sounds like they’re making the game “Pay to Win” with the crowns crap… but will need to see what’s in that store before actually knowing.

    Still not buying it.

    Reply

  29. Roc

    March 11, 2015 at 19:45

    I recently bought this game over the weekend. I played the beta, and while I liked the game and enjoyed the lore I just didn’t think the game was quite good enough to warrant a 15 dollar sub fee every month. Well, now that I have been playing it sub free, it’s like night and day theres no pressure to play the game since I’m not paying for it and it’s actually a decent game with exceptional voice acting and the storyline is actually quite decent if you’re not looking for a song of ice and fire and you understand that video game stories are not supposed to be pulizer prize winning efforts.

    Reply

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