Elder Scrolls Online Ditches Mandatory Subscription on PC, PS4, and Xbox One

ESO Tamriel Unlimited costs one-time fee, but online play is free thereafter; Premium subscription still available.

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Bethesda's online entry in the Elder Scrolls franchise, Elder Scrolls Online, finally has a release date for its Xbox One and PS4 versions: June 9. And along with that announcement, the developer also revealed that the MMO will no longer require a monthly subscription to play.

Now dubbed The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited, the game will include all of the content from the current game "plus all the updates and content additions, including the exciting new Justice and Champion systems." A one-off payment for this baseline game is required, but online play will not be locked to subscriptions thereafter.

The PC version of Tamriel Unlimited will go live on March 17, and current players will be automatically shifted over. If you've already purchased the game, you won't need to buy it again.

Of course, there's still a benefit for those who want to maintain their paid subscription; ESO Plus is the name of the game's premium service, and it will include: "exclusive in-game bonuses, a monthly allotment of Crowns to use in the store and access to all DLC game packs while a member." Crowns will function as Tamriel Unlimited's premium currency.

As with other online games, Xbox owners will need an active Xbox Live Gold subscription and PlayStation owners will need a PlayStation Plus membership. Bethesda will be discussing the game in more depth at noon ET (9 AM PST) on its Twitch channel.

Rumors were recently circulating recently that the long-running World of Warcraft would also transition to a free-to-play model soon, but Blizzard clarified that that's not the plan for their own MMO quite yet.

Justin Haywald on Google+

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