The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited is stuffed with interesting places to visit, as you'd expect of such a gigantic massively multiplayer online world. From the frozen wastes of Skyrim to the harsh deserts of Hammerfell, you can't fault the game's environmental variety, but nothing quite equals the strange majesty of Morrowind. Players could already traverse and explore a chunk of the province in the base release, but The Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind opens up the island of Vvardenfell - the land's most famous region.
Vvardenfell was the setting of The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind - a title that's still considered by many to be the best entry in Bethesda's role-playing series - and it's been faithfully recreated for this lengthy expansion. ZeniMax Online Studios has done an amazing job of taking the weird, almost alien feel of Morrowind and plopping it into its MMO, and as such, fans of the original game are sure to be hit with a powerful wave of nostalgia.
Indeed, it's the setting itself that steals the show here. Vvardenfell remains a fascinating location full of towering mushrooms, strange creatures, and volcanic ash storms. The map itself is supposedly the biggest PvE zone of the game so far, and at times it certainly feels like it. The island is broken up into varying environments, from swampy wetlands to rolling green - albeit mushroom-infested - countryside, and each area has its own distinct feel. As a whole, it's a joy to explore, and the aforementioned weird wildlife makes each adventure that much more interesting.
However, outside of the fresh location, the expansion is essentially more of the same. The land is littered with quests, both big and small, and there's a core storyline for you to follow throughout your journey. It took us around 30 or so hours to see and do just about everything, and there are plenty of optional questlines to get lost in. In fact, we'd go as far to say that Morrowind features some of the best written and best executed side quests in The Elder Scrolls Online.
As for the main story itself, the expansion offers up an intriguing tale that revolves around Vivec - a living God whose divine energy is being siphoned away by an unknown force. Naturally, it's up to you to get to the bottom of the mystery as you embark on an adventure that takes you to every corner of Vvardenfell. It's a solid plot with some nice twists, but a couple of later quests do feel needlessly padded. Still, for fans of The Elder Scrolls lore, there's a lot to enjoy here.
As is the case with the base game, Morrowind accommodates for both solo players and those who prefer to play in a group. Even if you're totally new to the MMO, you can jump straight into the expansion with a fresh character thanks to the title's magical level scaling. And, for players seeking some competitive action, there's the new battlegrounds PvP component, which features typical team-based challenges like Capture the Flag and Team Deathmatch. These relatively short skirmishes provide a good way to get stuck straight into clashes with other players, although at the time of writing, there are some balancing concerns. The level scaling system still applies when it comes to battlegrounds, but it's not quite enough to stop newcomers from being kicked to bits by veterans who have more potent abilities and far better equipment.
Last but not least, let's talk about the Warden - the game's first additional player class. Unlike the four existing classes, the Warden doesn't necessarily have to focus on defined playstyles thanks to three varied skill trees. The first boasts a range of abilities that see you summon animals to the battlefield in order to aid you. The second features numerous effective healing spells, and the third focuses on icy magic that protects you from a bunch of different incoming attacks. Given the breadth of skills available, a Warden can either be very specialised, or surprisingly well rounded. It's not the most exciting class in the game, but it definitely brings something new to the table.
The Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind is a very enjoyable expansion to an already rock solid role-playing experience. Featuring some fantastic questlines, this is a welcome return to the island of Vvardenfell - a wonderful location which has been lovingly recreated.