"We've been working on this for a while," says project manager Eric Buhlman of bringing Elder Scrolls Online to Stadia. The devs behind the port are assuring fans that playing one of the most active MMOs in the cloud should be a versatile, accessible, smooth experience.
The Elder Scrolls Online Stadia port benefits from crossplay between Stadia and PC, and Buhlman says it was a crucial aspect of the development process making sure players on both sides have a smooth experience.
"From the dev perspective, there are some challenges there. One of the benefits we had was that we were working on the integration alongside Google building out pieces of the platform. So that gave us a unique opportunity to solve some of those challenges together," Buhlman explains.
The $10/month subscription to Stadia Pro includes the base Elder Scrolls Online game as well as the Morrowind expansion. All other expansions, including the all-new Greymoor chapter, will be available at launch as paid add-ons. Cross-progression with PC means players' accounts will transfer over seamlessly to the Stadia version, complete with their characters and all owned content.
While Buhlman describes Elder Scrolls Online performance on Stadia as "roughly" comparable to console, the biggest strength of the streaming service as it relates to any game is its versatility. For the first time ever, you can play Elder Scrolls Online on your phone, something I admitted to Buhlman was hard to imagine.
"The first time I saw it on a phone was a really cool experience. The UI scales really well right out of the box. It's a hard thing to imagine until you see it," Buhlman says. "It's smooth. It's working."
The devs also see an inherent benefit to new players looking to get into Elder Scrolls Online for the first time, as Stadia eliminates intimidating downloads and hardware requirements.
"For new players, it's going to be incredibly easy to get into the game. No huge downloads, you can play it anywhere," Buhlman assures.
"As far as the concept of player choice, Stadia definitely helps us with that, with our existing players. I think it's going to be really cool to see how our existing PC players are going to jump in and use Stadia on-the-go, and maybe switch back and forth as well."
The Elder Scrolls Online launches on Google Stadia June 16.