Explorer’s Pack - Unexpected Pre-order Bonus

By: Ambuaz in: ESO News and Updates

ZeniMax Online finally announced bonuses that a player will receive for pre-ordering Elder Scrolls Online. There are 2 variants of the game available for pre-ordering:

standard edition

and imperial edition. Both editions will provide you with following bonuses:

Explorer’s Pack:

  • Early access to the game – from the 30th of March
  • Your characters can join any of the alliances, no matter which race you choose.
  • Scuttler pet
  • Extra Treasure maps that can be found during your explorations

The digital collectors’ edition will offer you some extra features:

  • New Imperial race
  • Imperial horce
  • Mudcrab pet
  • Rings of mara: Complete the Ritual of Mara with a friend and receive an experience bonus when you play together.

The physical collectors’ edition also includes tree souvenirs:

  • Printed map of Tamriel
  • Emperor’s Guide to Tamriel (a 224 page illustrated guide to the game)
  • A Molag Bal statue

Most of these bonuses are pretty standard but two of them are really unexpected. I mean new Imperial race and the removal of faction locks. Atropos from Tamriel Foundry published a really good article about it and I would like to add some new thoughts about the removal of faction locks as this is the most unusual part of the bonus for me.

Let’s start from some information about Explorer’s Pack from official website of the game:

[ If players pre-purchase the game through The Elder Scrolls Online Store (https://store.elderscrollsonline.com) or pre-order at any participating retailer, they'll receive the Explorer's Pack, a digital bundle that includes: ] — The ability for the player's characters to join any alliance, no matter which race you choose — The Scuttler, a tiny but loyal vanity pet — Four bonus treasure maps that will lead the player to loot.

The world of Elder Scrolls Online is based on Alliance war. Three alliances are fighting against each other and each alliance consists of 3 races. Developers created a system where each race is connected with certain faction. It was their “policy” right from the announce in May 2012.

But the Explorer’s Pack that comes with a pre-ordered game allows to choose any race regardless of the alliance. And this bonus is not about only one character. Read: “The ability for the player's characters”. Thus all your characters may benefit from it.

To receive Explorer’s Pack you need to pre-purchase ESO. But is this the only way to get it? I don’t think so. My guess: it will be possible to purchase Explorer’s Pack after the release. It is not pre-purchase only bonus. I think every player will be able to buy this pack from digital shop of ZeniMax. If this Pack is not available to all people after the release there will be two groups of players: one group can choose any race for any faction and the other can’t do it. And this will be the really really unfair.

I will not go further and talk about how the Pack will influence gameplay. I will not also talk about reasons to lock and then unlock factions. But I would like to know your opinion. What do you think about Explorer’s Pack? Do you like that faction locks will be removed?

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  • Comments ()

    1. Stormfyre 05 february 2014, 22:45 # 0
      What do u mean? u get the explorer pack with both the standard and the imperial editions.
      1. Ambuaz 14 february 2014, 13:01 # 0
        Yes, it is a pre-order bonus.
      2. Jeffrey Gundersen 14 february 2014, 12:32 # 0
        Looks that way. Personally I am psyched about it. It means that we have a better chance of playing against balanced factions. One faction wont be over powered because of the inherent benefits of a particular race. It is the best news possible.
        1. Lucas Huntington 26 february 2014, 16:46 # 0
          I think this is really cool! I like the fact that it is currently only available to pre-orders. I'm hoping they DON'T open it up for anyone to buy post-launch, because the novelty and rarity of this is the main reason it is so appealing to me. Plus, that would make it more likely that all of the factions will just become a mish-mash of the races that wouldn't represent it. I guess I just like the idea that it stays semi-exclusive. A good portion of the online gamers I know are planning on pre-ordering anyway!!!
          1. Jonathan Russo 03 march 2014, 07:05 # 0
            Kinda sad it's pay to play, i though Bethesda would know better than to be another World of Warcraft.
            1. George Olive 06 march 2014, 03:10 # 0
              Anybody know what hour on March 30 it will open?
              1. Lance Carmichael 08 march 2014, 03:28 # 0
                This game is being ruined from the get go. Please understand that I am a huge fan of elder scrolls I loved oblivion and skyrim. But making imperials a pay to play class is straight bull crap and allowing any race any faction for preorders is destroying content of the game. I don't want to pay a subscription and be forced to pay extra just to get all the races. If the marketing team are worried about making money back trust me it will come with time. You must trust your investment into the game. The game is solid for the most part missing only a real auction house that I can see at the moment. The games truly has the potential to be one of the greats, but with this pay to play exclusive race and any race any faction you are clearly showing that you are planning to fail. Basically hurry and recoup our money because this is one is a flop. Making players pay a monthly subscription fee and make us put with this pay extra for content crap is a low blow to those loyal to the series and a deterent to those who are new and looking for a real good mmo. Now with that said here is what I suggest make imperials available to all factions from the get go. This would allow the aldmeri dominion to have a real tank style class and offer an additional class to break the monotany for the factions. Get rid of the any race any faction for preorder before you ruin the good name of this game. Offer something vanity in place or maybe some low level starting gear in place of. Please realize I do not wish to bash the game but I see a fail in the making with this kind of marketing scheme. Please please change this before you ruin the game.
                1. Frankie Blankenship 10 march 2014, 01:31 # 0
                  Move on. I don't mind. Horses are faster. Imperials are cool. I have money. Next.
                  1. Shandaara Forceborne 11 march 2014, 15:37 # 0
                    I don't agree. Races should have stayed locked to factions. However I can see how being restricted out of race-specific traits may not be optimal either. Also, not every Redguard has to agree with Dagerfall alliance policies or had to be born there. Still, I'd go with restriction for the sake of immersion.

                    Seeing how many games go hybrid model, I expect (not too happily) that this game will not be an exception. After introducing f2p I expect ESO to restrict the race selection to specific allliance (behind a paywall anyway). At least this way the majority of players (f2p) will be from the faction they are supposed to and those who are not will blend in the crowd.

                    I don't think this is a game-breaking change anyway…

                    (I find the 5-day early start more unfair because as far as I know retail stores offer 3-day early start only and this puts everybody who wants to pick their name and have bought the game from retail store at huge disadvantage. For me this was one of the deciding factors why to buy digital version over retail copy. And I would like to buy it at store to support them… ...ohwell..)
                    1. Hans Mann 17 march 2014, 11:36 # 0
                      I hope explorer's pack stays restricted to pre-order, or atleast have limited number of the pack. would be weird seeing too many mixed races in the different pact. as most races would rather die then betray their own. i cant picture a nord agreeing to be ruled by arrogant high elfs with god complexes or high elfs being ruled by… well… ANY other race.:p Ofc every war has its traitors, but i suspect traitors would be in very few numbers…
                      1. Apple.Snowsong 20 march 2014, 01:25 # 0
                        I have a question about the prerorder Imperial Edition. If somebody buys the Imperial Edition, will the Horse still only be one gold coin ingame, like in the BETA, or will it come free ingame with that edition or will it costs thousands like the other horses ingame? If the Imperial Horse costs too much ingame like the others, what would be the point of getting the Imperial Edition? — so i guess it comes free with the Imperial Edition including free to get that Horse ingame. Is that right?
                        1. Ambuaz 20 march 2014, 04:48 # +1
                          Yes, Imperial Horse will cost 1 gold.
                          1. Apple.Snowsong 20 march 2014, 07:50 # 0
                            YAY! :D That's great! Thanks for the quick answer Ambuaz! BTW I do like that the Explorer Pack lets people play any race in any faction! I really love the creative freedom in Elder Scrolls games! It's so fun to let your character be whoever you want, and go wherever you can with it. :D I am happy about getting the Monkey Pet for participating in the BETA trials too! :o) I really loved being in the BETA trials. Other then getting booted off the servers sometimes (which we were testing the NA server for then) and falling through a few a few world spaces and getting stuck, even on reloading, which i am sure will be better on release; i found no other real bugs myself. The game is amazing! The character creation is magnificent! I tried several different races and alliances to test them out and I loved every minute of playing each one! ESO does have that special Elder Scrolls feel, that makes it so magical! :o) I think this game is going to be very successful and fun and will be played for years to come! :o)
                        2. Jos van Iersel 29 march 2014, 20:42 # 0
                          Email for Early Access says:
                          «The ability to play as any race in any alliance»
                          Does this also include the Imperial when it is not the Imperial Edition?
                          1. Apple.Snowsong 30 march 2014, 00:16 # +1
                            Hi Jos van Iersel. No, I believe you can play any race in any alliance with the Explorer Pack, only if you can have that race as a player character, and only those with the Imperial Edition can create an Imperial character. So with the Standard Edition and Explorer Pack, you can play any race that you have, but not Imperial — since currently you would not have the Imperial Race to create to play one with at all. Current knowledge is, that you would need to get the Imperial Edition and Explorer Pack to play an Imperial in any alliance, but you will have all the other races and could play any other race you have in any alliance with the Standard Edition and Explorer Pack.

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