When Bethesda originally announced their decision to delay The Elder Scrolls Online for PS4 and Xbox One by about six months, they said the hold-up was partially due to them “working to solve a series of unique problems specific to those platforms. Integrating our systems with each console manufacturer’s networks – which are both different from the PC/Mac system as well as different from each other – has been a challenging process.”
As part of an interview with CVG (via GI.Biz), Pete Hines, Bethesda’s VP of PR and Marketing, elaborated on those platform-specific problems by saying, “When you take that exact same system and you go to a console manufacturer, fundamentally the way it works under their architecture is different than the way that we do it.”
It was then stated by CVG how the different architecture is surprising, given Xbox’s connection to PC, to which Hines responded:
It is and it isn’t, because it’s not an open system, it’s a closed system. It’s not just an ESO thing – they have rules and regulations that govern all games, if you’re going to do something it has to work a certain way. It doesn’t matter the way that we want to do it – it has to fit their requirements.
I’ll give you an easy example: payments. When we do stuff on PC, we manage it ourselves, it goes through our store, we manage the whole thing. When it goes through somebody else, that someone is doing all of that – taking your money, charging your PayPal, and then transferring that information to us. This is just inherently a different process than the one that we have, where it’s our store and we just have to make sure our system works. It’s the same thing on PSN – you have to just make sure that all of that stuff communicates. When you start adding up the pile of things and everything that we learned from launch, it was clear that we needed to take the time to do this right, because it has massive ramifications if it doesn’t work right for the consumer experience.
Anyone who owns the PC/Mac version of The Elder Scrolls Online by the end of June will be able to transfer their character(s) over to either console version when released. As well, they can pay $20 to add a full digital version of the game on either PS4 or Xbox One with your character transfer(s), and another 30 days of included game time. This upgrade was addressed by Hines, who says they worked with Sony and Microsoft to work out some sort of offer for making consoles owners wait:
We’re not happy about [the delay] – obviously we [would] much rather have the console version out in June. But [the upgrade offer] seemed like the right thing to do, and we did spend a little time working with the console folks to try to come up with some kind of a thing so that the folks who couldn’t play it could buy the PC version and then add a next-gen console version later for a lot less money. That seemed like something that was worth working on before we announced the delay.
Have you tried the PC version? What do you think of it? Let everyone know in the comments below.