Ask Us Anything: Variety Pack 11

The developers of The Elder Scrolls Online give us another peek into the world of TESO in yet another edition of ‘Ask Us Anything”. This edition has no specific focus, though there are more than a few questions concerning guilds, lockpicking, and PvP.

Continue reading to see the whole thing for yourself, and let us know what you think in the comments below.

If you’re looking for more information about The Elder Scrolls Online, you’ve come to the right place. Every two weeks, we pull questions from fans like you right out of our inbox and off of our social media pages, and we have a brand new batch for you today. Read on to learn more about ESO. If you have a question that we haven’t answered, drop us a line at, tweet it, or let us know on Facebook or Google+.


When entering a Campaign with your guild, is there a number of members that are allowed to join after the limit of players within the Campaign has been reached? – Ando Amaranon

Yes, campaigns feature a soft cap to limit the number of participants from one alliance. There’s room for overflow that will allow you to join your friends or guild members in an otherwise full campaign, but eventually there is a hard limit to that. You’ll be able to join campaigns with your friends, but we want to ensure that an alliance can’t bring too many additional combatants in and hurt the overall balance.


I have a question about guilds. Can a character in any alliance join any NPC guild? For example, do you have to be in the Aldmeri Dominion to join the Mages Guild, or do the alliances have their own guilds? – André Sommer

You don’t have to be an Altmer to join the Mages Guild. Characters from all three alliances can join the Fighters and Mages Guilds. Neither of these guilds take sides in the ongoing conflict in Cyrodiil. They prefer to focus their resources towards solving problems that are, in their eyes, more important, such as fighting Daedra and recovering lore on the brink of destruction.


I remember you guys saying that you can have both a first name and a surname. Will you also take into consideration allowing a fixed list of prepositions or middle names, or do you think it’s too much? Characters like Mjoll the Lioness and Argonians have multi-word names. – Phane

You can use more than one space in your character name, so the examples you picked are all viable. In fact, the current limit is a maximum of four hyphens, apostrophes, or spaces in total, so you can come up with all kinds of names, like Nh’yen the Ter-Grol. This should be especially convenient for players who want lore-based names for their Argonian or Khajiit!


I’ve played many multi-player games, and 99% of them are eventually plagued with the same enjoyment-killing problem. What is this problem? Kill-stealing. You know, jerks who like to go into areas where people are farming or trying to level and kill-steal them relentlessly. Does ESO have a plan to implement something to prevent this? – Emily

Fighting the enemies of your alliance—NPCs as well as PCs—should be something every aspiring hero jumps at the opportunity to do. We don’t intend to limit helpful behavior in Tamriel by lowering the experience or loot you can take away from a hard-fought victory. If you help someone kill an enemy he is already engaged with, all you can do is take away some of the pride he might have felt by winning the fight on his own. He’ll still receive the full amount of experience and loot. If you did enough damage (or provided enough support), you might get some experience and loot of your own, too. And if the two of you decide to group together, both of you will get even more…


In Variety Pack 10 you said that when you die in PvP, “you can respawn at a keep your alliance owns (as long as it isn’t under attack).” When is a keep officially under attack? Will it suffice for a single player to scratch on the door for the status of the keep to switch to “under attack”? – Ando Amaranon

A keep is considered “under attack” when significant damage has been done to a section of the keep (for example a wall or a door). A few scratches aren’t enough to declare the keep as unsafe or to alert the whole alliance. If a capture flag is being transitioned from one alliance to another, the keep or resource is also considered under attack.


When you are picking a lock, will another player be able to kill you while you’re trying to open it? – Brenden Warren

Tamriel is a dangerous place. If you let your guard down while you focus on lockpicking, you might get attacked. Enemy NPCs might do this anywhere in the world, and hostile players will love the opportunity to surprise you in Cyrodiil. But then again, you never know what loot might be in that chest … maybe it’s worth bringing a friend to watch your back?


Will we meet an ancestor of M’aiq the Liar? – Jan S.

We were lucky enough to meet someone with that name just the other day, and when we asked him the same question, this was what he answered: “In the development of every project—and you can consider a family tree as a sort of project—there comes a time when you have to make certain decisions to either build your own legend or help others to do so. But then again, why did the mouse steal the cheese?”


How does the lockpicking in ESO work, exactly? Please elaborate. – Toni Ćelić

When trying to pick locks in ESO, you’ll see a set of tumblers. Using lockpicks that you carry in your backpack, you’ll need to force them down into the correct position. If you pay close attention, the game will give you visual and audio hints as to where the right position for each tumbler is. But you’ll also have to fight against the clock and open the lock within a given time. And then there’s the hostile environment you might be in (see above). For a quick glimpse at lockpicking watch the “Exploration and Gathering” video at 1:15 min.


When we first come across a keep, will it be free for the taking or held by the Imperials? – Dominic Hoggart

Omnis cyrodiila est divisa in partes tres … In the beginning, all of Cyrodiil is divided into three equal parts controlled by the alliances. Depending on the area the various keeps, mines, farms, and other objectives are in, they’ll be guarded by troops of the corresponding alliance. Of course, we expect this to change quickly, and from that moment on it will always be up to you to defend the objectives in your area and attack and capture your enemies’.


In Skyrim, you can get a vampire follower named Serana. I know she and her family were born in the First Era, so is it possible that she might be included in the game? – dovanator

Probably not, unfortunately: as you may recall, Serana was imprisoned in a stone coffin in Dimhollow Cavern from sometime in the First Era until the time of Skyrim in the Fourth.


Apart from being the emperor (for a short time) are there any other ranks one can gain in PvP? For example, can I become a Captain or General of my alliance or get recognition for the amount of enemies I have slain? Will friends and enemy players be able to see how successful I have been in PvP? – Jenny Sart

You can gain many military-themed titles from the PvP ranking system. There are also lots of achievements to earn and leaderboards that show how many Alliance Points you’ve earned in a campaign. The leaderboards update every 10 minutes or so and are filterable by class, alliance, and overall rankings.

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