ESO and FFXIV: The siren call of summer expansions

Does anyone else hear it?

Can anyone else feel it?

Summer… it’s here. And carried on the wind is the smell of sunshine, pool parties, and MMORPG expansions.

June is shaping up to be an especially busy month for the MMO industry. Elder Scrolls Online is releasing its first expansion, Morrowind; FFXIV is coming out with its second expansion, Stormblood; Black Desert Online is launching on Steam; Elite Dangerous is coming out on PS4; RuneScape’s got an expansion; and Secret World Legends is happening. Oh, and there’s also E3 and any possible announcements contained therein.

Of course, standard disclaimer, I’ve got plenty to do in my games as it stands, but I cannot deny that I am weak-willed when it comes to an expansion launch — even if I’m not playing the game. And I am feeling tugged toward both ESO and FFXIV, a situation that I did not predict but could very well be fueled by all of the coverage and hype going on.

Morrowind is especially appealing because that was the only Elder Scrolls game to date that I actually liked and played for any length of time. Plus, it’s a perfect start point for new characters, there’s that housing system to check out, and a pet-based class? It’s like they’re checking off my wish list. ESO also remains one of the big MMOs that I still have yet to give a fair shakedown, as I’m just not sure I can get past the combat, console-esque UI, and generally blah armor models.

FFXIV? I’ve been mulling over a return for a couple of months now. My character was on the cusp of Heavensward, and that’s when everyone said the story gets good. I genuinely miss the community and the dungeon runs (especially as a healer). Red Mage looks pretty sweet too, even though it lacks bears. BEARS. On the minus side, there’s the general hodge-podge of FFXIV annoyances I’d have to overlook and a subscription fee to contend with.

So what’s the plan? Do neither? Do both? Pick one? It’s a big summer ahead, and I wouldn’t mind a change-up of my MMO stable, especially since my other anticipated releases — Project Gorgon, Sea of Thieves, LOTRO’s Mordor expansion, GW2’s second expansion — are coming no earlier than fall at best. It seems like a perfect time to try on ESO for real or to give FFXIV another go.

I’m at a loss, really. I could see myself enjoying either of these, but I could also just be jealous with that time and keep investing it into LOTRO, GW2, and to a lesser extent, SWTOR. Anyone else hearing this siren’s call, or have you already made up your mind?

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6 thoughts on “ESO and FFXIV: The siren call of summer expansions

  1. Bevan Davies (@Dnote_Z5) May 26, 2017 / 9:25 am

    I jumped into Morrowind this week, well, I haven’t actually got any of the new content, but I am enjoying being back in ESO. I figure the three weeks until FFXIV’s Stormblood comes out is sufficient time to get my fix of it.

    Once Stormblood hits though all of my spare time will be spent in that. Really want to try the changes to the combat system, especially the Bard (my main), plus I want to get the Red Mage to cap, I think it might become my new main if it is fun. Also the combat changes might be enough to finally make me play Tank and Healer, something I’ve found quite boring to date in FFXIV.

  2. Tyler F.M. Edwards May 26, 2017 / 11:33 am

    I’d recommend giving ESO a try, but not because of Morrowind. It looks to be a decent expansion, of course, but while you can jump straight into it, I’d say it makes more sense to explore the base game at least a bit first. There’s just so much content there, and I get the impression you’ll want to at least do the Dunmer zones before jumping into Morrowind.

    This is why I’m in no rush to pick up the new expansion. It all looks cool, but there’s no need to rush there when there’s still so much in the base game for me to experience.

    Also, if you want to be a pet class, you’re probably better off rolling a sorcerer than a warden. They can have up to two permanent pets and one temporary pet, whereas the warden has just one permanent pet, and the rest of their “summoning” skills are just standard spells with animal-based animations.

  3. Dolvic May 26, 2017 / 12:21 pm

    If you decide to try ESO, I’d suggest looking at some of the add-ons. A lot of them can help with the US issues like adding a minimal or a better quest tracker. A few them need to be updated for Morrowind but they are worth checking out.

  4. Dolvic May 26, 2017 / 12:23 pm

    UI issues. Stupid autocorrect.

  5. Tyler F.M. Edwards May 26, 2017 / 12:37 pm

    Also can I just point you’re suddenly gung-ho about an expansion that’s basically all Elves all the time? 😛

  6. Galactrix May 26, 2017 / 8:56 pm

    If the original Morrowind was your favourite Elder Scrolls game, then ESO’s take on Morrowind might appeal to you. Set over 700 years in the past compared to the original game, ESO shows a younger, fresher island of Vvardenfell.

    I’m also finding it to be a great place to start a brand new character, as I made a Warden and am using Vvardenfell as my starter zone. In fact, they even made it so any new character you make starts in Vvardenfell by default, making it kinda like a prequel to the rest of the game’s main story, which I think they’ve done well.

    I haven’t played it yet on my existing characters, but I imagine it works well as a sequel to the main story too. Or you could play it concurrently. I really like how it just works in any order, in their spirit of the “one Tamriel” go anywhere do anything philosophy.

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