Since October 23, it is available to all players of The Elder Scrolls Online Clockwork City, the new DLC after Horns of the Reach. Again a goal dedicated to all fans of the old chapters of The Elder Scrolls, and extremely intriguing, which allows us to enter the domain of the last of the Tribunal: Sotha Sil.
Starting The DLC Quest
Let's start from the new line of missions that is a bit the hub for most players who will soon find themselves catapulted into this mechanical city. I started with a sore note: after turning to Mournhold "waiting" for me to intercept an NPC calling me for some mission, I decided to go wayshrine directly into Clockwork City, to find there the NPC that sends me directly to Mournhold to talk with his master. Other tour, other wayshrine.
In the dialogues, however, I enjoyed a certain amount of quality right from now on, with references from the NPCs to my past businesses such as the completion of Orsinium, DLC is far from obligatory for players. In this way I found and perceived my gaming experience as personal and unique, a small touch of class that points out the purpose of this MMO to strive for the quality of single player RPGs.
Returning to the mission, we will soon find ourselves as Alice follows the Barrel to see how deep his lair is.
The Mechanical Town
As soon as we make our first real entrance, we face an artistic work, items and furnishings of undeniable thickness. Every container, animal, library, static element has been studied and worked with care. Trees, steampunk architectures, "water" puddles with custom sounds and unpublished NPCs give an opulent glimpse into the engaging commitment to making the player's engaging experience.
Unfortunately, however, the new area, about the size of Hew's Bane (Thieves Guild), fails to make itself felt alive and authentic. The fortress is for a very large part (about two-thirds) scattered with spawn scattered pseudo-casual, making the city a real narrow and claustrophobic one. A real sin given the level design, the most articulated I have seen so far on TESO, and that could be highlighted. Suspended walkways, multilevel underground tunnels, and many connections between different levels (often with elevators) make the city and the travels extremely vertical, although greater generosity on panoramic views would further benefit, such as large windows or minimal parapets from to see other players move on different levels. Throughout this maze, it is rarely lost, reinforcing the effort of developers at the artistic level and level design.
Despite this, finding such a complexity again and then physically seeing the map a large part of the town area reduced to a desolate area with mob without apparent reason to be there, leaves a dull heart to potential unexplored. And perhaps he thinks that there should be a little more on the world and quest building to make it up to the complexity of the map. Globally, the bronze and metallic appearance that permeates the setting is very reminiscent, in the open areas, of views seen in Fallout or Borderlands.
A Dark Presence
The main theme of the mission will be solving a dilemma that is causing upheavals in the realm of Sotha Sil. We will soon be catapulted at the center of the action even if the narrative is often linear, without even the slightest branches of the DLC Orsinium. In fact, developers have confirmed that Clockwork City is at the Thieves Guild or Dark Brotherhood level in terms of history.
The underlying motives of our actions in history seem to be coherent and there are no particular forcing. As usual many choices are made difficult and not trivial. Unlike Orsinium, fortunately, there is no sense that our choices are irrelevant and that narration proceeds however on pre-established tracks. In summary, you can expect higher quality at the expense of the amount compared to other DLC on the mission-only plan.
Clockwork City also opens the gates of a new Trial. Do not expect long and panoramic routes or structured trials, Asylum Sanctorium consists essentially of three rooms, two for miniboss plus the central one. However, here is the strong point of this endgame content, that is, the choice of how to deal with them is completely arbitrary. One by one, only one mini-boss and then the other two or all three together, requesting to tailor their strategies.
This will remind many players of the encounter they have seen in the past. Moreover, even the assonance of the name between Asylum Sanctorium and Obsidian Sanctum is very indicative, do not you find it?
A noteworthy but important note. We say that every DLC costs about € 15. Well, with this additional paid content the perception is that ZeniMax is continuing to create barriers to entry for new players. Last year's action to counteract this was the Gold Edition and Guilds and Glory packs of 4 DLCs for 5500 Crown (exactly 34.99 euros), which saved 50% compared to the sum of individual launch prices.
I feel confident that a similar thing will be repeated to gather subsequent DLCs, and that they will be included in a new Gold version at the same time. The question, however, is: Does ZeniMax leave the previous DLCs available to all TESO holders free of charge? Or will the price be reduced individually? And if they were simply left in the Guilds and Glory pack as it is? Doing so would only jeopardize entry barriers for all players who want to get closer to the game.
On the other hand, there are no particular barriers to exit: players no longer have to pay a monthly fee, they access the game more or less casual, alternating intense gaming periods with others almost completely abandoned when they are exhausted content. This could bring the title to float without ever returning to the spell of the launch period, with few players stopping once the game has been tried but a dribbling of many others who take a break, during which they may find new games and more stimulating. What do you think about it?