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With the new Combat changes in ESO, I don’t recognize my MMORPG

The . The Elder Scrolls Online will receive update 33 with the DLC Ascending Tide on March 15, 2022. This will bring some combat changes to the game. MeinMMO author MiezeMelli is critical of the changes. You can find out why in this article.


You can play the new DLC Ascending Tide (Update 33) from March 14th on PC/Mac and Stadia and from March 29th on Xbox and PlayStation.

With the next update, all skills will scale with the higher offensive resource, i.e. both Magicka and Spell Power, as well as Stamina and Weapon Power. You can read more about the planned changes in our article on the Combat Change in ESO Update 33 Ascending Tide.

The developers’ main argument for these changes is support for different playstyles. They hope that this will give players more build choices.


Unfortunately, I see this going in a different direction, because the attributes magicka and endurance seem to be losing more and more importance.

Hybridization of item sets reduces set diversity

The developers started hybridizing the item sets with the 32 Deadlands update. This is where they started breaking up the specialization on the Magicka and Stamina attributes. Extensive changes were made to the sets.

The change is supposed to offer a freer choice for players. However, this change also reduces the unique selling points of many sets and makes individual sets almost the same. In a way, this will Number of possibilities not increased, just generalized.


The developers want to ensure that each set is interesting for different ways of playing and thus encourages diversity. Unfortunately, when I played the game myself, I saw exactly the opposite.

In addition, the item sets also represent an important part of the content of ESO. This adjustment is strictly speaking taking content from the game that has been added to the . in recent years. This is not my concept of diversity or freedom.

Combat in ESO is gradually being completely transformed

Also with the 29 Flames of Ambition update, ESO experienced a major change: the overhaul of the Champion Points system. Since then, patch after patch, magicka classes have been blurring with endurance classes. With the new champion points you play in the ESO Meta as a Magicka DD with daggers instead of a flame staff on the front bar.

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That alone felt weird for many endgame players, including me, since previously Stamina DDs used the daggers, or more generally the Two Weapons skill line, to deal physical damage. However, there was a phase in the past in which Magicka DDs played with two swords on the front bar.

Nevertheless, the dagger meta changes an important detail in the fight, because with them a magicka DD necessarily goes into close combat. This isn’t necessary with a Destruction Staff, since the light attacks can also hit from a longer range.


With the upcoming update, all skills and thus their strength should simply scale with the highest offensive value, regardless of whether it’s magicka or endurance.

This is how one developer explains this change of course:

This means that any ability that used to scale solely through Spell Damage and Max Magicka now scales dynamically through Weapon Damage and Max Stamina, and vice versa. This is to maintain the identity of many playstyles by strengthening ability costs as a limiting factor in how regularly you can use abilities. But you should worry less about how powerful this ability is depending on which attribute path you’ve chosen.

Gilliam (ZOS Combat Team) via ESO Forums


Unfortunately, I can only disagree with that, because if the attributes magicka and stamina no longer have any meaning, then there will be no stamina characters and magicka characters. Seen in this way, these identities are bisected.

The combat system loses interesting complexity

For me, the complex combat system and the specialization with the appropriate set and skill selection was very interesting. By merging the different buffs for magicka classes and endurance classes, it will probably be relatively easy to coordinate groups.

For me, ESO loses an interesting claim on the player. I think it’s good when at least the difficult content challenges me as a player. It also pushes a group to really engage with its members and their characters.


Aside from the fact that it bonds on a social level, I think it’s fantastic when you’re presented with a tricky task as a group. Through joint considerations (I also like to call it “theory crafting”), how to set up the group and what tasks each individual takes on, a stronger bond is automatically created.

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Of course, this will not be completely eliminated with the upcoming change. However, it will no longer be necessary to deal with the way your group members play in the way you did up until now. Ultimately, this is only beneficial in non-binding random groups.


But I find it especially in such a familiar game with strong community cohesion regrettable that with this step the communication of a group becomes less relevant. After all, ESO is an . and for me it’s all about playing together.

I also fear that this will not be the last step in this direction.

Changes have an effect once again, especially in the endgame

When it comes to customization, the developers mainly argue that they want to give players more freedom in choosing item sets and abilities. The problem with this idea, however, is that there has been no restriction on the selection at all since the release.


There are actually only restrictions due to the prevailing ESO meta. And it’s only in the endgame that this becomes really relevant. In general, you can choose race, class and skills independently. That’s definitely enough for solo content.

The strength of skills only really becomes relevant in group content. And even if you want to complete veteran dungeons with hardmode, you don’t have to stick strictly to the meta. Strictly optimized characters or groups are usually only found in the really difficult end content.

By that I mean the ESO Raids or Trials. And then actually only when it comes to the most difficult raid achievements: the triples or trifectas. For these achievements, the raid group must complete a hardmode veteran raid within a given time without a group member dying.


These achievements include:

  • Like Clockwork (Title: Tick-Tock Tormentors)
  • The Path to Alaxon (Title: Griffin’s Heart)
  • Godslayer of Sunspire (Title: Godslayer)
  • Pristine Siegebreaker (Title: Kyne’s Wrath)
  • Soul Savior (Title: Planebreaker)

But you have to know that only a tiny part of the community moves in this area of ​​ESO content at all. For example, only 0.09% of ESO players have the achievement “Godslayer of Sunspire”.

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So the restrictions imposed by the different strengths of the abilities really only affect a very small part of the community. And you will never be able to remove this restriction on the selection of item sets and abilities.


There will always be certain combinations that are stronger than others. And it is precisely this testing and optimization that motivates us to create the final content and compete with other players.

So the majority of the community is not really affected by the different strengths of the different playstyles. Solo content is often far too easy for experienced players since OneTamriel added open-world scaling.

As a result, some players are even forgoing their champion points and armor when questing to make it a bit more challenging.


ESO generally changes the combat system too massively

ESO’s combat system has always been a huge plus for many players, and for some it has even been a deciding factor in choosing this .. For me personally it has always been an important foundation in ESO.

The adjustments over the last year are increasingly leading to the elimination of the Magicka and Stamina attributes and the traits associated with them. For me, ESO changes exactly what I loved so much about the . for years.

Especially with the plan to no longer scale the strength of abilities with one of the two attributes, either Magicka or Stamina, shows for me quite clearly the endeavor to gradually unify the two attributes.


So I’m afraid that if this development continues like this, I might end up not enjoying the game anymore. Having been a passionate ESO player for such a long time, this is a bit depressing.

How do you feel about the hybridization and the planned combat changes? Have you been playing ESO for a long time and just started and haven’t really noticed the changes? One feature that every type of player can look forward to is the upcoming card game in ESO.