On the PTS (Public Test Server), The Elder Scrolls Online is testing a new endeavors scheme which is causing much concern in the casual player community.
The Endeavors system allows players to earn a currency called Seals of Endeavors through in-game activities that can be used to purchase items from the current crown crates in the Crown Store.
The article introducing Endeavors said there would be a variety of Endeavors so players could earn while true to “Play Your Way™”.
The number of daily or weekly Endeavors you can complete each day or week will vary, so be sure to check what the cap currently is and work out which of the available Endeavors you’d like to take on. This is to ensure that everybody, regardless of their play style, has an opportunity to earn the new currency without having to complete activities they don’t necessarily enjoy.INTRODUCING ENDEAVORS, A NEW WAY TO ACQUIRE CROWN CRATE ITEMS
Continuing along this theme, The Elder Scrolls Online has also four marketing “pillars”.
Currently, what is marketed and the endeavors that appear on the live megaservers is fairly consistent with each other.
During ESO Live July 10, 2023, they announced the patch notes for Update 39 which is scheduled to release in August (PC) and September (PlayStation, Xbox). One of the new features mentioned was “New Endeavor Activity Types”.
New Endeavor Activity TypesPTS Patch Notes v9.1.0
We are introducing multiple new Endeavor types in Update 39, all of which may now show up in your daily and weekly Endeavor activities, offering you new ways to earn Seals of Endeavor.
Samples of the New Endeavors
I reviewed the 10+ pages of related discussion on this topic on the official forums and summarized the community reactions below.
- New items added like Tales of Tribute
- Encourages players to repeat old content
- Additional dungeons might make it easier to complete stickerbooks
- Some endeavors are clearer (eg. Harrowstorm, Geyser vs “World Event”)
- Come a long way from consume food/drink or use Ultimates
- Not Play your way
- Disruptive to players’ “daily routine”.
- Not new endeavors, but existing endeavors with restrictions added (Specific Dungeons, Specific Trials, Grouping with Guildmate)
- DLC Heavy (require ESO+ or DLC purchases)
- Forces people to group more.
- Flood of inexperienced players / do not want to be there into dungeons like Fang Lair when they aren’t capable of doing the dungeon.
- Players would no longer be able to reasonably complete on one day
- Dungeon endeavors didn’t match up to the daily pledge
- Makes endeavors less appealing and harder to get
- Makes endeavors more like a chore
- New players will be locked out based off their difficulty and being a DLC they don’t have.
- Increases the time commitment to do
- More challenging for people who play off-peak times
- Grouping with guild mate too restrictive
- Seals too low for the effort involved
- solo queueing for dungeons will be worse, more fake tanks, healers
- Less accessible for older and/or disabled players
- Trials don’t belong in daily endeavors
- Disadvantage for players playing off-peak times
Taking into account the four ESO marketing pillars, introduction to Endeavors text, and the community reactions, I gathered the data to do some analysis.
There were several comments about issues with accessing the content. In this category, I looked at three factors: Accessibility, Paywalls, and Level Restrictions affecting new players.
Over the past year, The Elder Scrolls Online has been adding new features to make the game more accessible to players with disabilities. These include mythics that permit one-bar builds, screen narration and more. Based on the data to date, there is a valid concern here. The significant increase in DLC dungeons and Trials, for example, would force players into sweaty and frantic button-mashing content if they wish to not miss out on their seals of endeavors.
Paywall references to content that is unlocked with real money in order for the player to access. The first year metrics collected for Endeavors suggested that over 90% of the Endeavors were able to be completed within the Base Game locations.
To date, the PTS metrics indicate a shift to less than 50% of Endeavors can be completed within the Base Game locations.
I asked myself what are the impacts on new players? The notable ideas that came to mind our lack of endgame gear, lack of knowledge of mechanics, and smaller social spheres (friends, guildmates, etc.). With the dramatic increase in group content, notably dungeons, a new player with a limited social circle would be left to use the group finder or spam group requests in zone chat. Why? The group finder has level restrictions for the dungeons.
|Level 10||Fungal Grotto I, Spindlecluth I, The Banished Cells I|
|Level 12||Darkshade Caverns I|
|Level 14||Elden Hollow I|
|Level 16||Wayrest Sewers I|
|Level 18||Arx Corinium|
|Level 20||City of Ash I|
|Level 22||Crypt of Hearts I|
|Level 24||Direfrost Keep|
|Level 26||Tempest Island|
|Level 30||Blackheart Haven|
|Level 32||Blessed Crucible|
|Level 34||Selene’s Web|
|Level 36||Vaults of Madness|
|Level 37||Elden Hollow II|
|Level 38||Wayrest Sewers II|
|Level 39||Fungal Grotto III|
|Level 40||Spindleclutch II|
|Level 41||The Banished Cells II|
|Level 42||Darkshade Caverns II|
|Level 43||Crypt of Hearts II|
|Level 44||City of Ash II|
|Level 45||ALL DLC DUNGEONS|
|Level 50||ALL VETERAN DUNGEONS|
Based on group finder access, a new player would be unable to use group finder for nearly 1 in 5 Dungeon Endeavors.
Difficulty of endeavors is pretty subjective and depends on the skill level of the player. For this section, I used The Elder Scrolls Online target audience of the content: Group versus solo.
Looking at the data available to data, there is a significant increase in difficulty for completing endeavors. Only 13% of Endeavors to date is targeted for solo players.
The increased shift to group content may also make it difficult for players who play during off-peak times and the population base is smaller.
Conclusions and Recommendations
Given the very limited amount of data so far, we should remain calm and see what transpires in the remaining PTS Patch Cycles. However, there is significant data to suggest players will be affected by these changes.
Hopefully, the data is skewed by the fact the Undaunted Celebration is currently on the PTS and the endeavors offered are complementing the event. Worst case scenario, the game could shift from “Play Your Way™” to “Play Our Way or enjoy the Fear of Missing Out™”.
If you feel you will be affected by these changes or you like these changes, let the developers know.
Update: ZOS Clarification
Hi all, we’re following up on some of your feedback regarding the current Endeavors being tested on the PTS. For us, the function of the PTS is not only for the community to see and test content early, but it’s a way for us to test ideas in a number of ways.Official Forums
We want to stress that the way Endeavors are currently arranged on the PTS is for testing purposes. However, when they are on the live server, they will be curated along with existing Endeavors to ensure there is flexibility in the kinds of Endeavors offered to players of various skill levels. As such, you should not see all five daily Endeavors tied to only completing dungeons, for example.
The same can be said for Endeavors that are tied to specific Chapters or content. The goal is not to make all the Endeavors for the day or week tied to owning a Chapter. The Endeavor changes on the PTS are designed to add more diverse ways to earn Seals on the live server, while also maintaining that everyone has a number of options to do them each day/week while playing the game.
We hope this helps provide some clarity on the thought process regarding the Endeavors currently on the PTS. We are listening and relaying your feedback to our teams, so please continue to share your ideas and input. Thanks all.