5 million people signed up for the Elder Scrolls Online beta, Bethesda announced today through the game’s official Twitter channel. It’s unclear, however, how many of the 5 million have actually played the beta.
“That’s a wonderfully large number of people who have become part of our ESO community, and it continues to grow,” The Elder Scrolls Online director Matt Firor said in a blog post on the game’s website. He also addressed some of the feedback Bethesda has received so far and detailed how the studio has adjusted the game as a result.
He said some players raised concerns about the beginning of the game being too “constrained.” Firor said the game was structured this way so new players would not become overwhelmed, but explained that adjustments have since been made in response to the feedback
“After exiting the modified, more streamlined tutorial in Coldharbour, new characters now wake up in the first major city of their respective Alliance as opposed to being forced to go through the starter islands,” he said. “We’re adjusting the level curve around those cities so that you’ll have plenty to do and discover without running into enemies that are too powerful at the start. If you want to go back and experience these islands (which have been re-leveled to provide a regular content experience) the option is there, but players who prefer can just start exploring the rest of Tamriel.”
Bethesda has also addressed feedback regarding The Elder Scrolls Online’s combat system.
“We continue to identify ways to make melee combat feel even more substantial. In addition to many tweaks and changes to animations and audio, we’ve added player collision with NPCs, which means your character will no longer be able to run through NPC enemies,” Firor said. “This is a frequently requested feature that we think succeeds in making melee combat more visceral and exciting.”
Changes to the game’s tutorial and combat aren’t the only adjustments Bethesda has made during the game’s ongoing beta, Firor pointed out.
“These are just some examples of the changes we’ve made as you join our final beta test this weekend. If some of your feedback hasn’t been addressed, it doesn’t mean it was ignored or we felt it unimportant,” he said. “We are continuing to implement changes and will make adjustments that improve the overall player experience as long as the feedback is coming. That means through launch and beyond.”
Finally, Firor assured fans that Bethesda has enough server infrastructure to support the launch of The Elder Scrolls Online in April. Datacenters in North America and Europe will support millions of players, he said, going on to explain that Bethesda even has “overflow servers” at the ready in event that even more players than predicted join in.
“If player demand overwhelms our planned capacity and a queue has to be formed, we will offer waiting players the option to begin playing right away on an overflow server,” Firor said. “The overflow server is meant to be a temporary place where you can begin your adventure as you normally would–gain experience, items, achievements, etc. The character you create and everything gained as you temporarily play on an overflow server will transfer back with you when you log in the next time on the main megaserver.”
Though you’ll be able to group on the overflow servers, other social features like PvP or access your friends list and guild will not be available during these sessions, Firor said.
The Elder Scrolls Online launches April 4 for PC and comes to Xbox One and PlayStation 4 in June. Bethesda recently defended the game’s $15/month subscription fee, saying that the game’s “significant” expansion content justifies its cost.