"big proponent personally" of making sure they're ready to roll out a "high frequency" of new content post launch.
The studio anticipates gamers will "chew through content quickly," and so want to ensure there's a "constant stream of goodies" pouring into the online world of TESO.
Ultima Online is part of Sage's development background and he's learnt that players are "more engaged" if you keep updates frequent, as big pauses lead to big dips.
"We watch everybody in the market, but I'm a big proponent personally of making sure we keep a high frequency of content releases," Paul Sage told . "A big part of our plans is the future of the game. We always want to make sure there is something new right around the corner. Our plan is to have new content coming out on a really frequent basis."
"We want to make sure that people are really into the game and get to experience a lot of new things. We will have a lot of content at release, but I know that players are amazing in their ability to chew through content quickly, so we want to make sure there is a constant stream of goodies coming to them."
"The more frequently you update, the more the players like it. Players are more engaged. I think it is an issue of trust in a lot of ways. They know there is going to be a lot of new content coming in," he continued.
The storyline in TESO at launch may draw to a close but Zenimax will spin new yarns. "We've talked about Molag Bol stealing your soul at the start of the game, but that's a launching point. You'll wrap up the main story in The Elder Scrolls Online at release and that leads into an even bigger story," Sage teased.
Beta testing the MMORPG has led to some significant alterations to the UI, like adopting a more Skyrim-esque compass instead of their bulkier minimap. "In the latest beta, we are testing out the replacement of what used to be our mini-map with the compass, which is a little bit more Skyrim-like," explained the creative director.
"The mini-map was a little bit bigger and bulkier, but the other thing was the mini-map could sometimes almost have you connecting the dots between locations. We wanted to test out what a compass would be like, so we ran this through the beta testers to see how they reacted. They reacted very positively to it. More importantly, watching their patterns of play, we wanted to see if they followed the straight line of a quest or if instead they explored more."
He concluded: "What we found was they did explore more, which is what we were going for."
The Elder Scrolls Online releases on PC in Spring 2014, with plans for Xbox One, PS4 and Mac.
Elder Scrolls Online post launch content out on "really frequent basis"
13 August 2013 | By Simon Priest