The first time I played The Elder Scrolls Legends was at PAX East this year, at which time I called it “a brown, clunky, cash-in” and while must admit that I do feel a bit warmer towards it now that I’ve been playing the beta, I stand by those words.
Elder Scrolls Legends suffers from what most Bethesda games suffer from: it lacks personality while having decent gameplay. When compared side-by-side to Blizzard’s Hearthstone, a game from which it takes many of its mechanics (perhaps those are from Magic: The Gathering, I don’t know), it just looks so lifeless. The one and only playing field is just a dull brown scroll, with most of the screen being similar shades of brown. The cards themselves have decent artwork, but the colours tend to be a bit muted. Worst of all this game features awful voice acting—which seems to be a Bethesda staple at this point.
Uno on Xbox 360 was a magical wasteland filled with strangers chatting it up on their Xbox Live Vision Camera, sometimes with their dicks out. As a man who is known to enjoy dicks from time to time, I quite liked that. Sure, sometimes you’d see a dick or two that you’d rather not, and sometimes someone would be wearing a Nazi or KKK uniform, but most of the time it was just chill people being social.
Ubisoft decided it would be a great idea to make a new Uno and hype it up as having voice and video chat, playing off the nostalgia of Xbox 360 owners. Guess what? Somehow Ubisoft managed to completely fuck it up.
Anyone that knows me well knows that I love Hearthstone, considering I’ve spent at least $300 on card packs and expansions to the game. I’d even guess that it was my most played game in 2015, so for me to say that I think Gwent may be able to pull me away from Blizzard’s juggernaut franchise is a big deal.
First off, let me say that I was never really big into card games prior to Hearthstone. Friends tried to teach me Magic the Gathering and other physical card games, but I could never get into them. I’ve also never played any of the Witcher games, but the same could be said forWarcraft titles. I went into my preview of Gwent with a bit of apprehension, thinking I’d need to have played the series to understand and enjoy it. That, thankfully, wasn’t the case.
Bethesda seems to be on a streak of trying to cash-in on already saturated markets. First it was The Elders Scrolls Online, and now it’s the Hearthstone-like card game, The Elder Scrolls: Legends. Publishers can’t help but see the amount of money that World of Warcraft and Hearthstone rake in and not want a piece of the pie, but they don’t understand that everyone has already had their fill.
Legends had its first gameplay revealed just before PAX East 2016 with the announcement of a beta, and I was excited. I love The Elder Scrolls, and I love Hearthstone, so maybe this would be my new addiction?
Sad to report, that most likely won’t be the case.