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Elder Scrolls Online to be Playable on Older Machines

By - Source: Gaming Blend | B 28 comments

ZeniMax's upcoming MMOG will be playable on 5-year-old machines.

Game director Matt Firor revealed to Game Informer that ZeniMax Online originally used BioWare's HeroEngine in the early stages of The Elder Scrolls Online's development so that the team could prototype certain aspects of the game. In the process, they began working on a new engine that's now being used to power the upcoming MMOG.

"Think of HeroEngine as a whiteboard for us – a great tool to get some ideas in the game and start looking at them while the production engine was in development," Firor said.

From the start, ZeniMax Online knew it wanted a custom engine tailored-fit for the MMOG, something "tighter and more stable" than a third-party engine, something that would give them greater control over features. He pointed out that the new engine will not only serve up unspecified social features, but the ability to run on a variety of systems.

"Our plan is to have ESO run on just about any PC or Mac – laptops included – that have been bought in the last five years," he said. "Of course the better your computer’s graphics capability, the better the game looks, but we want to be sure that just about anyone can play the game and have a great time exploring Tamriel."

For an MMO, this makes sense: you want to reel in as many gamers as possible, even those who haven't purchased a new laptop in the last few years. As Gaming Blend points out, Crysis melted eyeballs with its top-of-the-line graphics and earned high marks by reviewers, but sold poorly because few people had rigs powerful enough to run the game.

Seemingly following in the footsteps of Torchlight, that won't happen here with The Elder Scrolls Online.

In a separate report, Creative director Paul Sage talks about questing in the upcoming MMOG. He said he spends a lot of time looking at how to move questing beyond the usual business of waypoints and combat targets. He wants the end of a quest to be the end of a miniature story.

"You head into town to fight the werewolves, and then, hey, there are these people barricaded in a church," he describes. "Do you want to help them out, knowing that, if you do, something else won’t be available to you?"

"We spend a lot of time trying to work out how to give the player interesting choices like that," he added. "I’m okay with people being frustrated with not seeing the cool thing, as long as the thing they did was still cool. When both things are cool, people have bought into the experience. It’s when they don’t care we’ve lost them."

To read Sage's full interview, head here. Doesn't it seem like ZeniMax Online's ESO may be trying to take on Blizzard and the unannounced Titan project?

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  • 21 Hide
    samuelspark , May 30, 2012 2:44 AM
    jryan388Hopefully less demanding than Diablo 3. Blizzard kicked out the two biggest diablo fans I know, my two brothers, by raising the minimum graphics too much. Sure I love great graphics but moreso I love playing with friends, especially my two brothers.


    what? Diablo 3 is one of the easiest games to run. You're expecting too much outta 10 year old machines.
  • 15 Hide
    Pinhedd , May 30, 2012 3:30 AM
    So their answer to shooting themselves in the foot is to hack the whole leg off?
  • 14 Hide
    fuzzion , May 30, 2012 2:51 AM
    So in other words " Game will look like WoW "
Other Comments
  • 21 Hide
    samuelspark , May 30, 2012 2:44 AM
    jryan388Hopefully less demanding than Diablo 3. Blizzard kicked out the two biggest diablo fans I know, my two brothers, by raising the minimum graphics too much. Sure I love great graphics but moreso I love playing with friends, especially my two brothers.


    what? Diablo 3 is one of the easiest games to run. You're expecting too much outta 10 year old machines.
  • 2 Hide
    DarkenMoon97 , May 30, 2012 2:49 AM
    2D Game? :o 
  • 14 Hide
    fuzzion , May 30, 2012 2:51 AM
    So in other words " Game will look like WoW "
  • 15 Hide
    Pinhedd , May 30, 2012 3:30 AM
    So their answer to shooting themselves in the foot is to hack the whole leg off?
  • -6 Hide
    Anonymous , May 30, 2012 3:42 AM
    Awesome, Older machines have bad graphics and run at a nice FPS, New machines have good graphics and run at high fps.
  • 3 Hide
    hardcore_gamer , May 30, 2012 4:45 AM
    ShakezAwesome, Older machines have bad graphics and run at a nice FPS, New machines have good graphics and run at high fps.


    and your point is ?
  • -1 Hide
    ihavenoid4u , May 30, 2012 5:02 AM
    i cant wait 4 this game. there needs to be another ultima as well o0
  • 9 Hide
    ikyung , May 30, 2012 5:18 AM
    I would like to see the difference of min spec graphics and max spec graphics of this game before I start whining.
  • 9 Hide
    v3nom777 , May 30, 2012 5:34 AM
    Let's go 16-bit! Then all computers in the last 15 years can play it.
  • 7 Hide
    whysobluepandabear , May 30, 2012 5:47 AM
    jryan388Hopefully less demanding than Diablo 3. Blizzard kicked out the two biggest diablo fans I know, my two brothers, by raising the minimum graphics too much. Sure I love great graphics but moreso I love playing with friends, especially my two brothers.

    Yeah, I hate to be a dick, but I think your brothers need to get a job or something. Sell some crack a few times a week maybe?

    Diablo III is EXTREMELY easy to run.
  • -4 Hide
    Anonymous , May 30, 2012 6:03 AM
    im with whysobluepandabear
    get a job, any pc worth 600$ + should be able to play it.

    who didnt expect low graphics from Majong? They are an indie company run by wannabe's. I personally see graphic quality as a REQUIREMENT for a good game in todays age(since its not hard to get a decent engine).
  • 4 Hide
    vrumor , May 30, 2012 8:12 AM
    Wow never thought id see someone complain about D3 reqs being too high. BWAHAHA I agree with the other 2 guys about get a job, holy crap.
  • -8 Hide
    neiroatopelcc , May 30, 2012 8:19 AM
    samuelsparkwhat? Diablo 3 is one of the easiest games to run. You're expecting too much outta 10 year old machines.

    It really isn't

    Upon startup it'll lag - on any computer. It'll eventually go away, but even on an i7 with a geforce 580 it'll lag initially.

    And once in a while it'll lag in game too - probably because of how poorly battle.net is running.


    I've got an older rig with an i7-920 and a hd6950 card and the first combat experience is always a slideshow. That is poorly run.


    So though it works okay in most cases it isn't always fluid - and I had the same 'what the beep it's a 2006 game' when I started it just like when I tried wow the first time and thought 'what the beep it's a directx7 game' (running an 8800gtx at the time)
  • 4 Hide
    alhanelem , May 30, 2012 8:27 AM
    what happened to gameplay being more important than eyecandy?

    i would rather play a good game that looks outdated than a "next gen" game that was really shitty.
  • 1 Hide
    neiroatopelcc , May 30, 2012 8:29 AM
    alhanelemwhat happened to gameplay being more important than eyecandy?i would rather play a good game that looks outdated than a "next gen" game that was really shitty.


    get a wii
  • 4 Hide
    Kryan , May 30, 2012 11:41 AM
    Quote:
    I've got an older rig with an i7-920 and a hd6950 card and the first combat experience is always a slideshow. That is poorly run.


    Diablo 3? are you serious? You, sir, need to learn about graphics card updates, broadband connections (latency > bandwidth), and general computer maintenance.

    I have a Phenom x3 Black edition, a 6870 and 4gb of ram and I run Diablo 3 on ULTRA and notice NOTHING, as far as graphical lag is concerned. (that's MY version of an older rig...)
  • 2 Hide
    Kryan , May 30, 2012 11:43 AM
    alhanelemwhat happened to gameplay being more important than eyecandy?i would rather play a good game that looks outdated than a "next gen" game that was really shitty.


    and yes, if gameplay is what you're after, go get a wii or play WoW (if you're not bored to death of it already) ...

    a game nowadays must have both great graphics AND fantastic gameplay:

    Skyrim, Fallout 3, Half-Life 2, etc.
  • 1 Hide
    neiroatopelcc , May 30, 2012 11:48 AM
    KryanDiablo 3? are you serious? You, sir, need to learn about graphics card updates, broadband connections (latency > bandwidth), and general computer maintenance.I have a Phenom x3 Black edition, a 6870 and 4gb of ram and I run Diablo 3 on ULTRA and notice NOTHING, as far as graphical lag is concerned. (that's MY version of an older rig...)

    I know about those things. I've got the 12.3 drivers (those without faults), a 30/30 Fiber connection, a Phenom X4 with 8GB memory and 4 LAN adapters as gateway (2008r2) and I still have the problem.
    So does my best friend, and so does 100% of the people I've spoken to in this regard.
    It's good at you are the exception, but just because you've got luck doesn't mean there isn't an issue. The graphics subsystem occassionally introduces unwarrented and noticeable latency and the preloading is done very poorly and thus makes the first contact with mobs a slideshow.

    Any well - ultra is fine, but it still isn't looking good. I see diablo 3 as sort of a torchlight 1.5
  • 1 Hide
    redemptionse , May 30, 2012 11:57 AM
    Quote:
    I know about those things. I've got the 12.3 drivers (those without faults), a 30/30 Fiber connection, a Phenom X4 with 8GB memory and 4 LAN adapters as gateway (2008r2) and I still have the problem.
    So does my best friend, and so does 100% of the people I've spoken to in this regard.
    It's good at you are the exception, but just because you've got luck doesn't mean there isn't an issue. The graphics subsystem occassionally introduces unwarrented and noticeable latency and the preloading is done very poorly and thus makes the first contact with mobs a slideshow.

    Any well - ultra is fine, but it still isn't looking good. I see diablo 3 as sort of a torchlight 1.5

    I can't say I've experienced this either
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