The ESO’s latest Q&A talks phasing, PvP, and more
The latest edition of The Elder Scrolls Online’s Ask Us Anything series is live on the game’s official website. In it, you’ll find a focus on Cyrodiil and PvP, as the well as the answers to questions about fast travel and sweet rolls.
In terms of PvP, one thing to note is that zone level scaling will bump everyone up to max level (50). ZeniMax says that “you’ll be able to remain competitive, but a true level 50 will have the advantage of having more skills and abilities than you.”
There’s also a bit of info on layers and channeling in TESO, including answers to questions about gameplay choices and how player actions will affect the ability to play with people who make different choices.
As far as I know, phasing – the way it’s done in WOW by Blizzard – is NOT a form of instancing. It might feel similar in effect, but from what I remember a Blizzard developer’s words on the forums, it’s fundamentally different:
Instancing does a separate load of the zone (a dungeon, a room, a whole map as it’s done in the form of “channels” in some games)… whereas phasing is more like the “death state” in WOW, where the game doesn’t do a separate load for you but just changes some flags as to what you’re seeing, such as objects, NPCs and players.
By the looks of it, TESO will have both: It does have channels, which are in essence instances (that will work like dynamic servers here)… And then it has phasing – they call it layering – which would keep you in the same “loaded area” with your friend, but you’ll see different things.
Myself, I think phasing is really cool when done subtly and care is taken to keep the players together as much as possible. I also don’t mind instances when they’re used for dungeons or isolated personal story “rooms”. What I’ve always disliked is channels (many different loads for a map), but seeing as the game is not using separate servers, it’s pretty much obligatory… And seeing as it’s got some plusses as well (like getting to play with like-minded players or whatever you’re in the mood for), I’m really willing to keep an open mind.