As you may know, the pre-order bonuses for ESO was announced this week. This has received mixed feelings. Here are the two parts that seem to be causing grief amongst fans:
1) Pre-orderers can play as any race in any alliance.
2) Pre-orderers of the Imperial Edition can play as an Imperial while anyone else will not be able.
I personally dislike both points as they seem to each undermine a point about the game.
The first destroys any hope of role-playing and immersion for dedicated fans like myself. For example, why on earth would the Dominion, fiercely anti-human, allow a Nord or Breton to join their ranks as an equal? It makes no sense. Now, the Ebonheart Pact, it makes sense they'd let anyone join since they're made up of Man, Mer and Beastfolk. But the Dominion and, to a lesser extent, the Covenant? I know it'll be immersion breaking for me, and judging by the backlash on ESO forums and websites accross the web, I'm not the only one.
And of course, the Imperial Edition alone allowing you to play as an Imperial. This, more than anything, infuriates me. This undermines the entire concept of the Elder Scrolls series' main objective: the freedom of choice, to make any character you want. Now, for the first time in the series' history, you will be race-restricted. If you don't buy the more expensive version, you will be barred from creating a character of your choice. All races should be available to all players regardless of whether they pre-order or buy a certain version of the game. This is nothing but a shameless cash-grab by Zenimax Studios. I have no doubt they forced Zenimax Online to do this in an effort to make a few more bucks. While I'm sure Imperials will be available to everyone in the future, likely when the game goes free-to-play as Zenimax promised it would, the fact that you'll be restricted at launch is troubling.
Subscribers, people PAYING to be allowed to play a product they ALREADY BOUGHT, will have to pay 20$ more to get the full game. The game hasn't even launched yet, and already we're seeing troubling signs. I'm having second thoughts about the game. Not because "the game sucks" like many a troll tries to pull off, but because of the cash-grabs by Zenimax Studios.
What are your thoughts on this?