Bethesda only wants Elder Scrolls Legends on consoles with cross-play

The Elder Scrolls: Legends is a card game which is surprisingly popular on PC and mobile devices. Not only that, but upon release it garnered positive reviews. Just like Hearthstone, it involve turn-based matches where you have to one-up your opponent by playing the right "creatures" at the right time. The title costs no money because it's available as a free-to-play experience across a variety of platforms.

Beforehand, consoles were left out of the loop, but that's changing soon. According to Bethesda at E3 2018, The Elder Scrolls: Legends is coming to Xbox One and other platforms in 2018. However, there seems to be a new twist in the story due to a comment made by Pete Hines, Bethesda's senior vice president of global marketing and communications, at QuakeCon 2018. During an interview between Game Informer and Hines, the Bethesda executive said that The Elder Scrolls: Legends would only come to platforms that support cross-play and cross-progression.

It is both cross-platform play and cross-platform progress. It is our intention in order for the game to come out, it has to be those things on any system. We cannot have a game that works one way across everywhere else except for on this one thing. The way the game works right now on Apple, Google, Steam, and, it doesn't matter where you buy your stuff, if you play it on another platform that stuff is there. It doesn't matter what platform you play on, you play against everyone else who is playing at that moment... Those are essentially nonnegotiable. We can't be talking about one version... where you take your progress with you, and another version where you stay within that ecosystem or it's walled off from everything else... that's our stance.

This doesn't seem like it's a problem for Xbox One and Nintendo Switch because the two allow cross-play and cross-progression with titles like Minecraft. If you purchase a texture pack on Xbox One, you can use it on Nintendo Switch and vice versa. Sony decided to forgo the latest version of Minecraft because the company didn't want to allow cross-play. The "Bedrock" edition is available everywhere except on the PlayStation 4.

Hopefully this pressure from Bethesda will lead to a change in the console maker's policy. However, due to the fact that The Elder Scrolls: Legends is a popular free-to-play card game, it might not have the same impact as a threat of blocking Fallout 76. We'll keep you posted as soon as we know more about the situation and what Bethesda ultimately decides on. However, it's still great to see a major publisher taking a stand in support of cross-play.

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Asher Madan

Asher Madan handles gaming news for Windows Central. Before joining Windows Central in 2017, Asher worked for a number of different gaming outlets. He has a background in medical science and is passionate about all forms of entertainment, cooking, and antiquing.

  • That’s awesome at all, but I’d prefer they put their money where their mouth is and support Play Anywhere. That’s another way to support gamers and be platform agnostic.
  • Agreed. Fallout 76 supporting Play Anywhere would be the best thing to happen to Windows gaming in years.
  • I can imagine that Sony may miss out on this game due to them not wishing to have cross console platform games. A loss for the fans.
  • Ms seams to be very focused on deliberately taking down walled gardens. To invoke trust they took away theirs first by putting their services and apps everywhere. The next step was play anywhere, cross play, cross progression, Xbox live achievements on other platforms like android. Even movies and TV's recent news takes down walls. Pwa even brings this to apps. And i believe that it was uwP across windows that got all of this started. The single hold out in their camp would have been groove due to how the music industry functioned. So groove is gone. That is starting to make sense to me. Apple recently said they are not in music to make money. I bet if Spotify created something kin to movies anywhere apple would be behaving like Sony. Of course they did jump on movies anywhere but as an entertainment co they are more about the music. Hard to decide.
  • Sony is missing out once again, I doubt Bethesda is the only one that will take this stance as it's easier to make one version of the game for both consoles as there is no longer any properitary hardware involved in terms of the SoC / Architecture such as power pc, cell etc. Plus it's much more cheaper as well.
  • Exactly, it's only really architectures they have to recompile for now. Just look at how many platforms Fallout Shelter is on.
  • And so it begins. I like this.
  • This is a half arsed effort really, if they really wanted to take this stance they would do the same thing with Fallout 76. But I guess they aren't really THAT dedicated to crossplay, especially since they know they're going to sell more copies of FO76 on PS4 than Xbox (more consoles in the wild, it's pretty much a given for this game).
  • Exactly. It’s just a PR boost at this point. Nothing more.
  • well, it's more likely to play this game cross devices (mobile, portable consoles, consoles) than Fallout since it's more casual.
  • Precisely that's what you would want with less casual games, saving your progress, customization, and playing with anyone from any device. It's common sense. Which is what Sony lacks, and it's sickening to see publishers sucking up to them even in this bizarre stance Sony has. But moves like this are the little sparks that end up burning the whole forest. It takes one big title to break it all. This is not it, but wait and see.