Elder Scrolls Online is one of the most popular MMORPGs on the market today, but despite their high popularity, it may surprise many players to find out that their backend hardware isn’t exactly the greatest. The developers have been planning a server hardware refresh for over a year, and recently, ESO Studio Director Matt Firor took to the forums to let players know how the migration has been going.
There are a lot of MMOs that have been around for decades at this point, and while Elder Scrolls Online hasn’t made it to their 10-year anniversary quite yet, that doesn’t mean that their datacenter hardware isn’t celebrating its 10-year anniversary. The latest post by Game Director Matt Firor updates players on the refresh of their hardware, which they originally mentioned over a year ago. The refreshed hardware came in response to several service failures that ESO has dealt with over the years.
We'll be updating all datacenter hardware to ensure we have a modern infrastructure and to support the game for many more years. This is not new/more megaservers and is unlikely to have a direct impact on performance, but will ensure that outdated hardware failures do not occur.— The Elder Scrolls Online (@TESOnline) January 28, 2021
The official post states that players won’t necessarily notice any performance increase, but it will allow Zenimax Online Studios to provide a more resilient service. The updated hardware have been in use on the PTS since update 34, and Firor is happy to report that things are running smoothly. They plan to roll out the hardware refresh to the rest of the NA Datacenter on May 3rd.
“In most cases, we are still running on 2012-era server hardware and it needs to be updated before components start failing more than they are. So, we are literally swapping out (“refreshing”) all hardware in our two datacenters.
This will not result in any appreciable performance gain in-game, but it will result in a more reliable service overall that needs fewer unplanned maintenances.
This was originally planned for last year, but the pandemic pushed back the timelines as it has become difficult to acquire new hardware because of global shortages.
It’s worth noting we installed and transitioned all the hardware for the PTS a few weeks ago, before the U34 PTS update, and we’re happy to report it has been working very smoothly. This was our major test case to ensure that everything would work as expected.”
-Matt Firor, Studio Director, Elder Scrolls Online Forums
In essence, what does this mean for you, the player? Aside from less server issues, probably not much. There should be no noticeable performance gains, but players won’t need to worry about unexpected downtime marring their playtime any longer. Currently, only NA Servers will be part of the refresh, but Firor goes on to say that the EU Datacenter refresh is planned as soon as they are able, but due to Pandemic shortages, there is no estimated refresh date currently available.