ESO: Countdown to Early Access

As the picture shows, there’s just three days left until early access for The Elder Scrolls Online begins! That’s right, those that have pre-purchased the game digitally or have pre-ordered the Molag Bal-ruled Imperial Edition will have access to the game beginning on Sunday at the following times:

North America (East):   7:00 AM EST, Sunday March 30th
UK/IE:   12:00 PM WEST, Sunday March 30th
Central Europe:     1:00 PM CEST, Sunday March 30th
Sydney, Australia:   10:00 PM AEDT, Sunday March 30th
Singapore:   7:00 PM SGT, Sunday March 30th

For more important times and release information, check out the game’s Launch FAQ here.

While you wait to enter Tamriel with your friends, don’t miss a new feature on veteran combat sharing details on what you’ll be able to do once you’re at level 50 — including details on Craglorn, ESO’s first Adventure Zone.

ESO: The Road Ahead

As we begin the final beta weekend for The Elder Scrolls Online, ZeniMax Online Studios’ president, Matt Firor, has shared an update about the game’s launch and what’s planned down the road for the game.

Here’s Matt…

In just a few short weeks, we’ll be launching The Elder Scrolls Online for PC and Mac. While it’s been quite a journey to get to this point, ESO’s launch on April 4 is really just the beginning. I want to take a moment to let everyone know what we’ve been doing since my last update and talk about what we’re planning in preparation for launch and beyond.

If you’re reading this, you’re probably one of the 5 million people that have registered for the ESO beta, and likely participated in one of our large beta tests. That’s a wonderfully large number of people who have become part of our ESO community, and it continues to grow.  The worldwide interest in ESO has led us to conduct a series of massive “scale” or “stress” betas to prepare for the numbers of players we will have at launch. These tests help us to simulate launch conditions and uncover bugs and other issues. In addition to these scale tests, we’ve had large numbers of players in long-term gameplay testing. Our long-term testing has allowed us to delve more deeply  into things like balance, progression, quests, PvP, and high-level 50+, and 50++ content. While we know uncovering bugs can be a frustrating experience for you, every issue that is found and fixed pre-launch helps make the final gameplay experience that much more polished and smoother for everyone. Thank you to all who have participated in these beta tests—your help has been invaluable. Our final PC/Mac scale test will take place this weekend and we hope you’ll join us again.

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ESO: Crafting “Ask Us Anything”

The ESO team answers your questions and delves deeper into the art of crafting. Here’s some of what you can expect from this week’s article, “Ask Us Anything: Crafting“.

How will crafted gear compare to dungeon loot and PvP rewards? I hope the crafting system won’t be there just to do something when you’re bored, but that it will contribute to the economic health of the game.

Crafted gear of the same level and same quality as gear found in the world is almost always better. For instance, if you find a level 22 sword of fine quality, but your friend crafts a level 22 sword of fine quality, the damage done by the crafted sword is going to be slightly better. However, some of the gear you find in the world will have unique enchantments or set bonuses crafters cannot replicate. Still, a crafter might be able to take that dropped item and make it even better while retaining the unique enchantment.

On the Storefront — ‘Knee Deep in the Dead’, New Vault Boy Tee, and more!

Our latest roundup of Bethesda merchandise features awesome goodies for DOOM, ESO, and Fallout.

We start with GamingHeads.com new statue memorializing the iconic cover art of the original DOOM – Knee Deep in the Dead, the statue is approximately 12.5 inches tall (including the base), is cast in high quality poly-stone, and is hand-painted to exacting standards.

Knee Deep in the Dead will be available in the third quarter of this year and is already available for pre-order at GamingHeads.com and the Official Bethesda Store. For the uber collector, GamingHeads.com also features an Exclusive Edition limited to 360 pieces featuring a light up base — it’s literally a lava lamp.

Looking for something a little less demonic? Here’s some other new items worth checking out.

  • You wanna one-oh-onsie? No I’m not impersonating Return of the Jedi’s Bib Fortuna. I’m just excited that my baby girl will be able to wear our new Vault 101 onesie.
  • Oh, you’re a grown man that wants Fallout stuff. We’ve got you covered, too. New items include our Vault-Tec Citizen Jacket and a Fallout 3 screenprint  by nationally-recognized illustrator Courtney Billadeau.
  • Yesterday we announced Dark Horse’s “The Art of Wolfenstein” collectible book, and we’re excited to share that a special edition of the book — individually numbered and signed by the team at MachineGames — is available for pre-order the Bethesda Store. With only Only 500 produced, the Exclusive Edition contains a tip-in plate, signed and numbered by MachineGames’ Axel Torvenius (Senior Concept Designer) and Tor Frick (Technical Art Director).

Last but not least, we’re excited to unveil March’s Vault Boy Tee of the Month. For one week only, get your hands on the Mister Sandman Perk shirt. And if you’re lucky, you might even win one for yourself (see contest rules after the break).

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Weekend Update: ESO Beta and more!

It’s the weekend, which means we’re in the midst of the latest beta session for The Elder Scrolls Online! If you have a beta code, be sure to join the fun. And if you can’t make it this time around, you can catch up on all the notable gameplay streams throughout the ESO community.

So what else is worth checking out this weekend? Here’s some highlights from the past week…

  • Our friends at Shortlist have put together one of the tougher Fallout 3 quizzes we’ve ever seen. Share with us your high score in the comments below.
  • Pete Hines recently took time to discuss our 2014 lineup — The Elder Scrolls Online, Wolfenstein, and The Evil Within — in new interviews with both CVG and 3News.
  • Preparing for The Evil Within this August? A new feature at Gamespot readies you for the return of survival horror with classic games and films that will condition your mind for Shinji Mikami’s newest (and most twisted) game.
  • We’ve got even more previews for Wolfenstein: The New Order — with the latest coming from 411Mania, IGN AU, Gamespot, and Nerd Reactor.

That’s all for now. See you in beta!