Welcome to Jester's Trek.
I'm your host, Jester. I've been an EVE Online player for about six years. One of my four mains is Ripard Teg, pictured at left. Sadly, I've succumbed to "bittervet" disease, but I'm wandering the New Eden landscape (and from time to time, the MMO landscape) in search of a cure.
You can follow along, if you want...

Friday, April 18, 2014

Picture of the Week: Dem bones!

OK, this just made me laugh:


One of the mid-level ESO quests turns you into a skeleton. And it's not just skin deep, either. While you're a skeleton, you're a lot tougher than average... but healing spells don't work and you don't regenerate health. It's a very clever little twist on the standard Elder Scrolls vampire/werewolf tropes, because you can keep this quest running for as long as you like...

...and while it's out there running, you're still a really tough skeleton that can't be healed and doesn't regenerate health. A few people seem to have taken the game up on this bargain and are playing a bit as a skeleton. And when the quest is over, if you just want to go skin deep with it, the game rewards you with a little token to skeletonize yourself.

And the quest itself also isn't just skin deep. ESO doesn't have a morality system that I've determined, but about 10% of the quests do have moral choices in them and this is one: a village has made a Faustian bargain with one of the Deadric Princes, Clavicus Vile, that turned out really really badly for them.(1)


As the end decision and moral choice of the quest, you can either enforce that bargain forever (blue) or break the bargain and release the village from it -- with potentially even more disastrous consequences for the village (red).

This is the sort of really interesting game play choice that I just love in a game.

I couldn't help but sit in this room for about 10 minutes and watch other players pass through, curious as to which choice they'd make. During the period I watched, it was running about 50/50. A few of them reached the room and sat there for a minute, clearly thinking about it, before deciding. You know the quest designer is doin' it right when that happens. Hopefully over time, ESO will develop a reputation system for its NPCs. Or maybe it's there already and I haven't encountered it yet.


(1) Hint: in a previous game, a group of vampires made a bargain with Clavicus Vile asking him to end their vampirism. He sends the player into their lair to kill all of them. Because that ends their vampirism, right? Clavicus Vile could be an EVE player.

15 comments:

  1. And to give that scenario from an Eve perspective, you are the Dev controlled by a null see cartel, deciding on the fate of the bulk of your subscription base, giving them 2 choices: Continue to exist in a "village called high sec" which has been turned into hell, or choose to live under slightly better conditions in a place called sov null sec, where you serve a different set of RMT masters.

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    1. You should see a psychiatrist

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    2. Mr. Piranha, a Mr. Spiny Norman asked for you, calling from Luton Airport...

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    3. do us all a favor and play ESO instead of EVE.

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    4. 3/5 on the Dinsdale Bingo.

      Nothing to see here, move along.

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    5. Dinsdale is a CFC plant, for the sole purpose of making everyone who plays this game seem irresponsible for having him online as opposed to a padded room.

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  2. Isn't it established in canon that skelettons need to be supported by straps, lest they would simply collapse? And skelettons have always been among the weakest foes in TES.

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    1. I am not sure about the canon, but these are not your normal brainless necromantic skeletons. The whole thing is the effect of a deadric pact and direct influence of Clavicus Vile.
      While a normal skelli summoned by a necromancer might be weak something created by a deadric prince might be quite different.

      I had a lot of fun thinking about the ethical dilemma behind the whole thing, I played the quest with a friend and his solution was quite simple; they are already dead so ending their suffering is obviously the right thing.
      But they aren't, they walk they talk, they plead with you for their desired outcome and half of them want to go on the other half want their torment to end. You can only decide for all of them.
      A dilemma worthy of Clavicus Vile.

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  3. Hey Jester - I've been enjoying your blog for a few months now. Do you find yourself thinking you'd rather be playing eve than eso? I started eso a week ago and so far I'm finding it the least enjoyable fantasy MMO I've tried (DAOC, WOW, GW, Rift, SWTOR, GW2). Does it get more engaging as you level up? Maybe I'm just enjoying eve too much this time :)

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    1. Read Jester's entires on ESO: step out of the beaten way! Go in the opposite direction of everyone else, explore the map, get in trouble, and so. ESO rewards you for not following the crowd.

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    2. I did read those entries, I specifically spent time running all over the place. Maybe it's a poor class choice (imperial dragonknight sword & board in Glenumbra). I'll try something different in another area.

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    3. So far, I'm really enjoying ESO. It hasn't pushed EVE out of the way entirely for me but I'm enjoying it a lot. And yes: DON'T get too focused on the quests, particularly the main quest (which is actually pretty terrible).

      Vegetarian Thanksgiving, baby: work those side dishes.

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  4. No comments on the dupe bug thing that was going around?

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    Replies
    1. Yeah, I'm going to talk about that tomorrow or the next day.

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