Why bear mounts in The Elder Scrolls Online will become a reality.
Just to be clear, there’s been no official word from ZeniMax Online Studios (ZOS) that bear mounts will be made available in The Elder Scrolls Online. Likewise, there’s been no information datamined from the game that even hints the devs are working on such a project. That said, I’m positive we’ll see bear mounts in ESO.
Why am I so confident? Well, it’s not just a case of wishful thinking (let’s hope not — my wishful thinking track record has been pretty abysmal. Skyrim movie anyone?). I’d like to charge across the battlefield on the back of a rampaging bear as much as anyone, but emotions aside, I actually have three sound reasons why we’ll have the mounts in-game.
Reason #1: It’s Lore Friendly
The Elder Scrolls franchise has a rich and detailed mythos filled with history and heroes. Fans of the game series take The Elder Scrolls lore very, very seriously. If something doesn’t jive, the Community gets upset and the devs hear about it. The issue of lore is why we’ll never see Dragon mounts in ESO for instance.
Bears though, are a totally different animal (pun intended). In fact, bear mounts are quite lore friendly as evidenced by the writings of Nuulehtel of Skywatch, Royal Advisor of Queen Ayrenn. In the lorebook titled The Rise of Queen Ayrenn, Nuulehtel writes:
Much has been made of our Queen’s adventures in Tamriel by bards and common broadsheet scribes. Yes, it’s true that she once rode a bear. That she hunted the frost trolls of Skyrim, delved into the depths of a Dwarven ruin, and crewed with a pirate captain of Cyrodiil.
If a Queen Ayrenn rode a bear, there’s no reason lorewise why we can’t as well.
Reason #2: We Already Have Bears
The second reason why we’ll have bear mounts in The Elder Scrolls Online is because the animals already exist in-game. It’s not as if the devs have to totally design and create a brand new creature — all the heavy lifting is done. Not to minimize the hard work that goes into design, but with the concept art and 3D modeling already completed, it shouldn’t be too difficult to simply slap a saddle on the back of a bear and get on with it. Hi-Ho Silver, Away!
Reason #3: Show Me The Money
The third (and probably the most compelling) reason why we’ll have bear mounts in The Elder Scrolls Online is the amount of money that can be made in the Crown Store. Love it or hate it, the cash shop is now an integral part of the game’s business model.
As of now, ZOS has released just two premium mounts in the Crown Store: the Nightmare Courser and the Senche Leopard. The leopard was a limited item sold during Welcome Back Weekend, but both it and the Courser cost 2,500 Crowns — almost 3 times the cost of a standard horse. In real money, this equates to roughly $25.00 USD, and based on the number of leopards and Nightmare Coursers I see on a daily basis, it’s safe to say that players are willing to spend a lot of money for a cool looking ride.
Lore. Design. Money. All signs point to ESO bear mounts. I can’t say for certain when it’ll happen, but it will. I’m convinced my character will be riding on the back of a bear at some point in the future.
So what do you think? Do you believe we’ll see bear mounts in The Elder Scrolls Online, or do you think I’m crazy? If bears were made available, would you buy one? Let your fellow readers of the Skyrim Fansite know what you have to say in the Speak Your Mind section below. Until next time, fellow travelers!
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Shane Scarbrough is the founder of the Skyrim Fansite. He's a business owner, video game journalist, and role playing game aficionado. When he's not working he enjoys reading, writing, and playing video games. He's currently on his third playthrough of Skyrim, and is playing as a Templar in The Elder Scrolls Online. You can find Shane on Google+ and FaceBook.