The Elder Scrolls Online would be a 'lesser game' if free-to-play, Bethesda argues

The Elder Scrolls Online is the rare MMO that will launch with a subscription fee. Surely, the company would attract a larger audience by going free-to-play? Bethesda VP Pete Hines defended his company's decision, saying that restricting the audience was intentional. "We're not trying to make a game that everybody who plays games will automatically buy," he said. "It is a certain kind of game. There's no shooter elements. There's no aliens."

Hines says that making TESO free-to-play would make it a "lesser game."

"We're not going to make a lesser game that might be more palatable," he told Gamespot. "We want to do the version that we think is the best game and the coolest experience. And that means putting a lot of people and a lot of content creators towards having stuff that comes our regularly; every four weeks, five weeks, six weeks. Big new stuff that you want to do.

The scale of the content will be much more significant than what other F2P MMOs are offering, Hines argued. "It feels like regular and consistent DLC releases," he added.