ESO – Stonefalls

My plan to rotate among the MMOs I’m playing? Yeah, not quite there. But I am doing pretty well playing ESO for ~2 hours a few times a week. In theory, I should be able to slot in FF14 no problem. I just need to actually do that.

I’m trying to better divide my time among various hobbies so ramping up slowly is more sustainable in the long run. I picked ESO to get onto a schedule with first, because a friend plays. Not like my other friend who plays LoTRO (that I can never seem to meet up with or even see online; we have very different play times), this friend is on frequently, and we overlap schedules!

So I’m leveling up, following the zone guide, which is fantastic. Open it up holding X (I play ESO using a controller, even on Stadia/PC), peruse the various categories, and hit X to keep exploring. What this does is select the next item in an unfinished category and highlights the general vicinity.

For instance, here is my zone guide for Stonefalls. The top category is “Main Story Quests” and I’ve done 16/16. Under that is “Wayshrines” and I’ve found 14/14. Next is “Delves” and I’ve completed 6/6 – completing a Delve means exploring and defeating the boss somewhere inside (Delves are designed for solo play so this is very doable). Under that is “Points of Interest” and I’m only 16/18, and the next PoI I haven’t done is “Brothers of Strife”. So that’s next, it is highlighted in the map and I can make my way there.

Generally, a PoI is completed by doing 2 or 3 quests in that PoI. In typical fashion, the first quest unveils part of a story that the followup quests concludes. The quest chain in Brothers of Strife involved gathering materials for an investigation in a historical event, and then actually participating in that event.

I really like the quests in ESO, they are a cut above the usual fare of gathering items (flowers, bear skins, what have you) and returning. For example, one I did earlier was “King Aphren’s Sword“. It starts with an NPC needing help recovering a sword. Except it was split into 3 parts, so you need to fight your way to three areas in order to gather them up. Every time you recover a piece, a ghostly girl appears with short scene about the past.

After getting the 3 pieces, you venture into a tomb and confront the ghost of King Aphren. It turned out he spent all his time running the kingdom and ignored his daughter, but you can help him make amends by giving her the sword. What about that guy that started the quest in the first place? Well you can decide whether to help him or help the King. I decided to help the King out of sympathy, plus the original NPC needs a lesson in sub-contracting his work out without advanced payment. 😉

I wrapped up enough of the zone guide to move on (finishing the PoIs, then finding the Striking Locales, Set Stations, and Mundus Stones. I’ll come back for the Skyshards and Library Books another time; the rest I view as optional – the Public Dungeons, World Bosses, World Events). Time to pick off a handful of quests in my journal, then move to Deshaan, the next zone, and continue the original story line!

I think this location is quite striking. We have a beautiful waterfall on the left, amidst a grassy hill and some trees. And in the distance on the right is a lava waterfall, flowing through a rocky volcanic mountain. Right now I have my non-combat pet dog out, photo-bombing (ok, not really since he’s tucked away in the corner) in the lower left corner. 🙂

The game looks and plays amazing on Stadia, which still causes me to pause in wonder when I remember I’m playing in a browser tab and don’t have any of the ~100GB of files on my PC that ESO consists of. The PS4 version looks/plays well too, but I’ve mostly dropped those chars in favor of the PC version (shared with Steam, Stadia) due to my friend, plus the enormous convenience of being able to play when I’m visiting family.

I’m still logging into the PS4 version, at least this month, because the daily reward on the 21st is… 100K in gold!! I’m sure the multi-millionaires don’t care and likely prefer the collectable items (mounts, pets, housing stuff, wearables) but I’m still at the point where 100K comes in handy. IT takes around 45K in gold to fully train a horse, and while I’m really just playing one char, I’d like to have a nice buffer for possibly training up the horse on another. This is ideal, because it doesn’t take long to log into a char and quickly train for the day at 250 gold a pop. So while I’m leveling up my Templar I could easily be training the horse on an alt, Warden for instance, not that I’ve already made one and am parked at the horse trainer with spare cash from previous daily rewards. 😀

Over on the PS4, I finished my horse on my main and am nearly done with training on 2 other chars. This gives me a lot of options for future play and takes very little time. So every month I see the big reward is a pile of gold, I make a note to grab the daily rewards!

2 thoughts on “ESO – Stonefalls”

  1. I had no idea ESO had an internal checklist like that. That pleases the completionist part of my brain. Maybe it’s silly, but that alone make we want to give ESO another try.

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