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Zenimax Online promises Elder Scrolls Online won't be buggy

Beta test will help MMO break free from franchise's glitchy reputation, says dev

While its games are widely loved, Bethesda's big franchises have grown a bit of a reputation for bug problems, most recently in games such as Fallout 3 and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

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But speaking to our chums at Edge, The Elder Scrolls Online game director Matt Firor said he hopes a long beta test will help ensure the reputation isn't continued in his promising MMO - perhaps Elder Scrolls' most ambitious, and thus tricky to polish instalment to date.

It's also worth noting that Elder Scrolls Online is being handled by Zenimax Online, an entirely separate developer to the one responsible for the single-player games.

Firor said: "[Laughs] It's not only that, but there's also many different types of tech problems when you create an MMOG. Account creation, servers, latency. The critical difference with MMOGs, though, is that you have a long beta test where you build up to thousands and thousands of players, and you tackle those problems as you run into them there."

On the subject of what truly makes the project an Elder Scrolls game, Firor said: "Lore. Even now, I come across lore that I didn't know existed. It's just so deep. People play games for different reasons, but the people who respond to Elder Scrolls the most like to get immersed in a world so that they feel they're living there. They like to have freedom of choice to do what they want to do, and that's the part that resonates with us the most.

"This is what makes the IP so great for an MMOG already: people already know it's the kind of game where they can head out and explore and be rewarded for it. That's the one thing that player will learn immediately that's different about us: if you see something in the distance, you can go and investigate and be rewarded for it."

The Elder Scrolls Online is one of 20 games up for the E3 2012's Most Anticipated gong in the CVG E3 2012 Awards.

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