Powerful witches performing a ritual in one of the new Harrowstorm dungeons for ESO.
The latest paid dungeon DLC for Elder Scrolls Online, Harrowstorm, released for PC/Mac yesterday on February 25th. Notably, Update 25 also rolled out to those servers for all players, for free.
The Harrowstorm DLC in ESO introduces two brand new four-player dungeons in the form of Icereach and Unhallowed Grave to kick off the year-long Dark Heart of Skyrim storyline, alongside new achievements, collectibles, and gear sets.
Last night I played through both of the new dungeons on the default normal settings (both also have Hard Mode and Veteran options) with my CP170 Warden tank. I had a DPS Templar friend with me, but the other DPS and the healer in both dungeons were random players from the dungeon queue. During Icereach I don’t think a single person ever got downed once at all, but in Unhallowed Grave we had a handful of full party wipes — it was a much longer, more difficult, and far more interesting dungeon.
In fact, the only redeeming qualities for Icereach were probably the setting with its vast, snowy vistas teasing the upcoming locales of the Greymoor expansion, and the final boss fight against four witches. Everything else was a linear slog through trash mobs and straight-forward boss fights.
Unhallowed Grave on the other hand was throwing something new at us at every turn from the inventive boss fights, difficult platforming segments that utilize the grappling hook introduces in the Dragonhold DLC, and even hidden bosses and special achievements tucked away off the beaten track. It felt like a real adventure and reminded me of the excellent dungeons found in both Wrathstone and Scalebreaker.
I’ll have more details on the Harrowstorm dungeons soon, but for now suffice it to say that both are worth doing just to say you’ve done them, but only Unhallowed Grave is actually fun in a challenging way. If you want more details about the new sets and other additions, you can find that over on the official website.
Wielding the powerful new shield added in the Harrowstorm DLC for ESO.
As part of Update 25 everyone has to re-download the entire game due to how dramatically it’s been updated. Everything from load times to framerate and overall stability has improved, which should translate to performance gains across the board for most players. For my personal PC I’ve never suffered much with ESO, but that isn’t the case for a lot of people.
When I went through both of the new dungeons I never noticed any performance issues. In fact, I noticed overall loading times were much faster in ESO and even with lots of players on-screen during open world content outside of dungeons things ran well. This is purely anecdotal, but worth noting nevertheless.
Also as a free addition for everyone in Update 25, there are new PvP rewards for Cyrodiil: The Knights of the Circle Armor and Weapon Outfit styles. You can get these by purchasing a Knight’s Resolve or Knight’s Rebuke from a War Researcher in Cyrodiil using Arena Gladiator Proofs.
Like all DLC that isn’t a big chapter expansion, Harrowstorm is free to all ESO Plus members, or can be purchased in the crown store for 1,500 crowns (which translates to $15) and will release on PS4 and Xbox One on March 10th. There is still no release date for the Google Stadia version of Elder Scrolls Online.