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ESO Tales of Tribute: Why Cause Controversy in the Community, 2023?

The release of Tales of Tribute in Elder Scrolls Online brought with it a wave of anticipation and excitement among the player community. However, the reception turned out to be mixed at best and negatively critical at worst. This guide dives deep into the reasons behind this lackluster response to the new game mode, focusing on aspects such as gameplay, rewards, and overall engagement. By dissecting the issues and suggesting potential improvements, we aim to shed light on why Tales of Tribute fell flat and how it might be turned into a more engaging and appealing game mode for Elder Scrolls Online players.



ESO Tales of Tribute: Why Cause Controversy in the Community, 2023?


Understanding the Controversy

Upon the announcement of Tales of Tribute, it quickly became a topic of mixed reception within the ESO community. The game mode was met with varying degrees of skepticism and disappointment. This was not due to the concept of a card game itself, as other games have successfully incorporated card games, but rather due to the divergence from what players were anticipating. Many players were expecting significant updates to PvE and PvP gameplay, such as new classes or gameplay changes. The announcement of a card game left some players feeling unfulfilled and let down by the lack of substantial updates they had hoped for.


The Rewards Dilemma

One of the major points of contention with Tales of Tribute was its reward structure. The rewards offered in the game mode needed to be on par with the time and effort players needed to invest. In comparison to other game modes like Battlegrounds and the Imperial City, the rewards for Tales of Tribute felt lacking.


Players expressed their frustration at the discrepancy between the effort required to succeed in the game mode and the rewards they received. Unlike Battlegrounds and Imperial City, where players could earn valuable currency like Alliance Points and Tel Var Stones, Tales of Tribute offered rewards that could have been more appealing and often failed to motivate players to engage with the game mode.


Gameplay Analysis

The gameplay of Tales of Tribute involves engaging in card battles with opponents, utilizing patrons, and accumulating prestige points. While the concept of patrons and card battles added a layer of strategy, the length of the games became a significant concern.


The games often took too long to reach the required prestige points for victory, which led to a sense of tedium and prolonged gameplay sessions—in comparison to the relatively short matches of Battlegrounds, Tales of Tribute's extended matches contributed to player frustration.


Potential Solutions

To address the negative reception and improve Tales of Tribute, several potential solutions have been suggested:

  • Adjust the Prestige Requirement: Reducing the required prestige points for victory could result in shorter matches and a more engaging gameplay experience. A reduced prestige requirement could make the game mode more appealing to players looking for quicker and more exciting matches.
  • Revise Reward Structure: Enhance the rewards offered in Tales of Tribute to make them more valuable and competitive with rewards from other game modes. Introducing a dedicated vendor with unique and desirable items could motivate players to participate in the game mode.
  • Shorten Match Length: Consider reducing the time it takes to complete a match, making the game mode more accessible and attractive to players with limited playtime.
  • Add Seasonal Content: Introduce seasonal Furnishings, trophies, and cosmetic items that players can earn by participating in Tales of Tribute. Seasonal content adds excitement and encourages players to engage with the game mode regularly.
  • Communication and Feedback: Encourage open communication between developers and the player community to gather feedback and suggestions for improvements. Regular updates addressing player concerns can foster a more positive perception of the game mode.


Tales of Tribute Tips & Tricks


Unlocking the Card Game:

To access the Tales of Tribute card game, head to Gonfalon Bay in the main city of High Isle. You'll find a paper near the bridge that initiates the quest. Follow the quest into the gaming hall and speak with Braggas to begin the in-game tutorial. This tutorial will teach you the basics of the game, unlocking your ability to play Tales of Tribute.


Card Anatomy:

Each card in Tales of Tribute has specific features that define its gameplay:

Gold Cost Some cards require gold to be played. This cost is at the top of the card and represents gold earned through the card game.
Health Pool (Agent) Agent cards have a health pool. This represents their durability. When it reaches zero, the agent is eliminated.
Immediate Effect (Left Side) This describes the effect the card has when you play it.
Combo Effects (Right Side) Combo effects grant additional abilities if played after specific cards of the same suit.
Patron Suit The top-right corner shows the patron deck the card belongs to, indicating synergy with other cards of the same patron.
Artwork The middle of the card features its artwork.


Board Icons:

Understanding the icons on the play mat is essential:

  • Yellow Circle (Gold): Represents gold earned each turn. Used to buy cards and patron abilities.
  • Blue Icon (Prestige): A win condition. Earn prestige to reach 40 prestige points to win the game.
  • Red Icon (Power): Used for various effects, including dealing damage to opponents' agents.
  • Cooldown Pile (Used Cards): Where cards go after use in a turn.
  • Deck Icon (Draw Pile): Your draw pile containing cards yet to be drawn.



Patrons are unique decks with special abilities. Activate a patron's ability once per turn. Favouring a patron unlocks its better effects.



The communal deck that balances card availability. Buy cards from the tavern with eso gold to add them to your deck.


Card Types:

  • Starter Cards: Basic cards that begin in your deck based on your chosen patrons.
  • Gold Cards: These provide gold when played.
  • Action Cards: Perform specific actions and have gold costs.
  • Agent Cards: Have health pools and stay on the field, providing ongoing effects.
  • Contract Cards: Provide immediate effects but leave the game after use.


Sequence of Play:

  • Choose patrons.
  • Draw cards.
  • Play cards, use gold, and activate patrons.
  • Buy cards from the tavern.
  • Use patrons' special abilities.
  • End your turn.


Win Conditions:

  • Reach 40 prestige points.
  • Have all four patrons favouring you.


Obtaining Cards:

  • Play through the Tales of Tribute questline.
  • Earn cards through gameplay activities in ESO.
  • Upgrade cards using World Boss drops.
  • Tribute victory coffers and secret maps lead to unique cards.



Tales of Tribute's negative reception within the Elder Scrolls Online community highlights the importance of aligning player expectations with the content being introduced. While the card game concept was an interesting addition, it needed to deliver the engaging gameplay and rewards that players were hoping for. By addressing the reward structure, adjusting gameplay mechanics, and implementing player feedback, ZeniMax Online Studios has the opportunity to revitalize Tales of Tribute and make it a more appealing and enjoyable game mode for ESO players. Through ongoing improvements and community engagement, the potential for a successful and engaging Tales of Tribute is within reach.

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