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We played The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood – playtest, opinion [PS4, PS5, XOne, XSX, PC, STADIA]

We played The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - playtest, opinion [PS4, PS5, XOne, XSX, PC, STADIA]

We had the opportunity in mid-April Play a pre-release trial for the latest DLC To The Elder Scrolls Online titled Blackwood, where for several beautiful hours we were able to discover the magical world that the developers from Zenimax Online Studios are preparing for us. Recently, we were again invited to the well-known lands of Oblivion, where we had the opportunity, under the supervision of the developers themselves, to find out more details about the upcoming expansion.

Arena for new ideas

The world we will traverse as part of the latest adventure was created based on the achievements of two already older parts of the cult series, The Elder Scrolls: Arena from 1994 and The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. The eastern side of the prepared grounds uses cities and other enclosed locations that we had the opportunity to visit in the first scripts of The Elder Scrolls, but all the surroundings of these places are a completely new and original vision of the designers from ZeniMax Online Studios, who allowed themselves a bit of creative freedom. This is due to the fact that the source material described or presented such problems in a very laconic way – it is known that 27 years ago technology did not allow to create such a huge world, so only in TES: Blackwood you will see what they were not able to create the authors of the original Arena.

The western part of the kingdom is of course inspired by the fourth main part of the legendary saga, but in this case we can recognize it from a period of up to 800 years before the events of TES IV: Oblivion, when the cities of the Empire and the Aragonese were important trading partners, they were not necessarily friends with each other – At least sometimes. This large time frame gives the developers plenty of wiggle room in the environmental narrative, as they presented as an example during a joint session the example of a cave located near Leyawiin.

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In limbo, a large part of the city was flooded and devastated by water, as were the surroundings and underground dungeons, but thanks to the upcoming DLC ​​we will finally visit these places during their greatest glory, as there are only these caverns, single ponds, and all the corners of the city that were inaccessible To it someday open at our disposal. For loyal fans of The Elder Scrolls fourth movie, it will be a very unforgettable and exciting journey through memories and a chance to check their own thoughts on how a big life home like Leyawiin worked in the past.

Your friend as your new friend

As I mentioned in my post since mid-April, the Kompania provided by ZeniMax Online for the game is meant to fill in the gaps in real players when we want to play ourselves or simply don’t have anyone to go on an adventure with, but they don’t have will replace it with us. In order to give them a bit of personality, they are each set up for two side missions that reveal a bit of their past and closer our collaboration more – a companion can praise or criticize us for specific actions on the battlefield or during a normal walk. Since they are similar to our living companions, they will be subject to the same rules in battle as the real players, so their resurrection will cost us the same effort and resources as in the case of our teammate we joined. Team.

As for the other NPCs, in Blackwood we can meet people we’ve already come into contact with in the base version of the game or during the add-ons. Here, during the session, a certain doubt arose in me. Since each player can travel in the world of The Elder Scrolls Online according to their individual preferences, some logical inconsistencies and gaps may appear in the timeline of events as we learn. The creators reassured me, however, that the whole thing was created in such a way that the NPCs would interact according to the way we meet, so if you meet someone in Blackwood for the first time, they’ll treat you that way, but if you’ve met before, they’ll get to know on you and respond appropriately to your actions.

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A challenge for everyone

Moreover, in the example of Der Zenthar, the authors showed me how useful companions are during combat. If, for example, a dungeon like this is too difficult for you when playing alone, you can always take a companion with you, just like when traveling with a live player, facilitating clashes with ghosts and other dark monsters. The same is true of the worlds within the Gates of Oblivion itself. This will be a kind of new dungeon, but it will always give us a random starting point so that we can explore it in our own way. Of course, when our traveling companion enters this place through the same portal as us, he will end up in the same place, so we will avoid the useless search through vast corridors.

When it comes to the combat itself and the level of difficulty that the developers want to offer us, we have good news for everyone. In the right company and with the right preparation, even beginners will be able to follow the plot, enjoying its secrets without spilling blood, sweat and tears in very intense fights – although they will be a bit demanding anyway. For veterans, a number of secrets have been created to discover whether on the surface of an ordinary map or in the lands hidden in the Gates of Oblivion, where a battle with a small, medium-sized boss can be quite a challenge. In this way, the creators want to please their old fans, who demand the best impressions from them and fight to get the last juices out of them, as well as fresh fry who just want to get acquainted with a new adventure in their favorite. Globalism.

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In short, a lot of fun will be waiting for us, a lot of new mechanisms that we will meet, a nostalgic journey into the past through well-known territories and interesting criminal intrigues back to Hell itself.

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