Elder Scrolls Online: Greymoor

Game review by
Michael Lafferty, Common Sense Media
Elder Scrolls Online: Greymoor Game Poster Image
Challenging yet repetitive elements in gorgeous adventure.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

While players can complete quests and level up to gain new skills, weaponry and armor, there isn't a strong positive message. This is about killing non-playable characters, wildlife, and monsters. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

There are no positive role models. There are characters that may appear friendly or benign, before they commit acts of betrayal or are murdered. 

Ease of Play

While the navigation system is easy to use, the battles can be quite involved, and the game presents challenges that scale to the level of the character. That tends to scale fights toward a normal/hard difficulty level rather than easy. This isn't a game that caters to the casual player. 

Violence

While you'll find bodies that eventually fade away, there are other aspects of the game that are very violent. When a player becomes a werewolf, the transformation involves the character bending over and exploding in a fountain of blood. The werewolf form is on a timer, and to maintain the form, the player has to feast on those he or she has killed. Vampires can bite the necks of others and turn them into vampires. There are images of enemy vampires or harrow fiends feasting on the dead. Vultures will also pluck at dead bodies. Additionally, there's a focus on combat with melee weapons, magic, or ranged weapons, which will cause blood to spill from enemies when they're hit.

Sex

Player characters can dress provocatively, particularly the female characters. What may pass as armor may not cover much or seem overly protective. 

Language

While the language isn't overtly foul, there's the intent in using different words. For example, one non-playable character will tell you that if you're not there to help, you can "hork off." The word 'bastard' is also used. 

Consumerism

This is the latest installment in the Elder Scrolls Online franchise. Players can spend real money to purchase items that can be used for cosmetic items.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Non-playable characters can appear drunk, and some settings involve taverns and pubs. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Elder Scrolls Online: Greymoor is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows PCs. This expansion features werewolves that players can turn into, exploding into the furry form through a bloody transformation and feasting on the bodies of those they have killed in order to maintain their state. Vampires can also feed on players. The game's combat-driven, mainly through completing quests, and that involves killing enemies through magic, using ranged weapons (bows), swords, or other means, resulting in blood from your targets. Non-playable characters can be seen as drunk, and some sections appear in taverns. The word "bastard" can be seen in dialogue, along with intended profanity that's adjusted to not be completely offensive. Additionally, some outfits, particularly for female characters, can be rather revealing, and leaves little to the imagination. Players can also dive into a gathering/crafting element and players can buy (for crowns - which are accrued through a subscription, or they can be bought for real-world cash) houses to decorate.

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What's it about?

There's an ancient evil beneath the ground of Western Skyrim, and with ELDER SCROLLS ONLINE: GREYMOOR, the new lands are awash with supernatural creatures that are preying upon the citizens. Introducing two new areas -- Western Skyrim and Blackreach -- ESO: Greymoor drives players through a storyline that's rather dark, and includes assassinations, and rituals to drain or transform the people of the land. This expansion adds werewolves, vampires and witches to the world, includes a 12-player dungeon and caters to those in search of treasure with the new antiquities system. The story will drive players through the world, and allows players to partner with other players to complete tasks, or fight in a combined battle without actually becoming part of a party. While Greymoor does offer gathering and crafting, this is a game that's mostly about combat, leveling and putting together complimentary skill sets that can be devastating to the foes faced. 

Is it any good?

Strap on your armor, grab your weapons, and get ready for battle. Elder Scrolls Online: Greymoor is the latest expansion in a combat-heavy fantasy world that offers stunning vistas that are occasionally disrupted by texture breakdowns. Allowing players to take on the roles of a vampire or werewolf (yes, eating your fallen victims to maintain the werewolf form is nasty), solve mysteries, search for treasure, level up, and more. The storyline does evolve and carry players through the world, and the questlines are entertaining, unless you are running them with multiple character classes, at which point they become predictable and redundant. 

But what Greymoor does provide is high adventure in a world that requires a lot of travel time, its share of creepiness, some great challenges and a lot of visual eye candy. The music and voice acting are nice supports to the visuals. And, to its credit, the world is big enough to allow players to level up in different ways to experience the areas of the world without having to repeat questlines to the point of apathy. Some of the visual elements are repetitive (no matter how slowly you go into a body of water, there's seemingly always a huge 'cannonball' splash), and there's a lot less flexibility in exploring the world than what you'd expect from such a large scale adventure.. But what makes Greymoor worth the time invested are the story arcs. They are enjoyable, and keep you engaged as you roam the map accomplishing your tasks. While there are some stumbles, mainly in the tech department, and some repetitive play, Elder Scrolls Online: Greymoor is still one of those titles that wil appeal for fans of the franchise.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about violence in video games. Is the impact of the violence in The Elder Scrolls Online: Greymoor affected by the amount of blood and gore in the game? Would the content have the same impact if there wasn't any blood or gore included?

  • What are some of the warning signs that someone is trying to learn too much about a player online? What information isn't acceptable to give to strangers? How can you be safe during online gaming?

Game details

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For kids who love role-playing games

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