Housing has been added to ESO. It’s not exactly what I imagined a while ago, but I am glad its here and overall I like the implementation. I haven’t figured out everything yet and I am still only starting to build my first house but there are a few things I would like to see added at some point in the future – so this is a wishlist.
1. Integration with the guild list.
I spent a bit of time exploring peoples houses to get inspiration for my own house, and having a column in the guild list that shows whether you have permission to access that members house would be very useful. This may be something that can be added through a plugin.
Additionally being able to see which house they have set as their primary residence, perhaps by hovering over the permission icon would also be helpful. Being able to sort by this field or filter results in a really large guild is nice functionality too … I probably wouldn’t use it that much, but if they add something like this, they may as well add it in.
2. Multiple Houses
I haven’t gotten a second house yet, and I haven’t seen anyone who has. I also haven’t explored other ways to invite people into a house. At the moment I use either, visiting primary residence or porting to someone, while they are in their house (through friend list, or guild list) – but what if I want to visit someones house, that isn’t their primary residence, when they are not online?
Using the same guild/friend list functionality mentioned above seems the easiest way. They could also add a house option to round wheel that is used to initiate dueling, that lets you invite non friends into the house on a temporary basis.
3. NPC / Pet / Mount Paths
At the moment, you can place your assistants (and mounts, pets, etc) in the house but they are very statuesque, they don’t move around and they don’t do anything. It would be nice if you could set them in a resting pose – lying down, standing, sitting, etc and then also add a path for them to walk around your property.
The path places the responsibility on the user to make sure they aren’t walking into walls or swimming into the ocean, but an even more elegant solution would just be to have the NPC’s wonder around the property and random times, performing random interactions with the items in the house. Many of the pets already have small animations that aren’t triggered when they are placed in the house and it would be nice to see the it little cub chasing butterflies or doing something besides just standing dead still.
4. Interactive objects
Currently you can turn the lights on and off and interact with a few other objects. I would like to see this expanded so most objects that have a purpose, can be used for that purpose. So interacting with the chopping block, would start you choping wood, interacting with a broom would start you sweeping.
If NPC’s do gain some sentience and are walking around the house, they should be able to interact with the objects too.
Furthermore, certain achievements could have unique interactions – like a Master Fisherman’s boat, could be sailed out to a unique fishing spot to find that ultra rare fish (which is another achievement itself and needs the master fisherman achievement and a house with the water access).
5. Object profiles
Entering house editor mode lets you move items around. I would like to see a limited version of the editor mode taken outside the house. Not the ability to move things around, but to be able to select an item and view its properties. So if you spot a vase you like you can switch to this mode (similar to housing editor, without the editing capability) and see what style is used to make the vase and then go off an make your own vase.
This could become a very powerful feature, where if you want to see what style clothing one of the NPC’s is wearing you can bring up their profile and see details about the NPC there.
Other details could also be added, giving each NPC a backstory, showing where they were born and what happened to them before you clicked on them. Relationships between characters could be added, showing how different NPC’s are related to each other. Stats about the character, varying from their age, to how many times you have killed that NPC or the last time you interacted with them. What loot they are carrying. The list goes on – and the data contained within could be used to generate a number of quests related to housing.
This could also be useful to see other player details and each person can control how much additional information they want to display in such a view. From creating a backstory for their character to allowing people see their achievements. It would also be interesting to see your own characters relationship with each character – like if you have grouped with them before, to if they have killed you in a duel or in Cyrodil a number of years ago.
6. Alternate characters in house
I would like all your other characters to be present in the house, roaming around as NPC characters, doing chores and interacting with the pets and objects as the existing thief and banker npcs might do (it they weren’t just statues). With their different personalities driving their actions inside the house – the drunk personality sleeping and drinking and shouting at the other NPC’s, the commander getting the pets to line up in rows and sit in unison.
You should also be able to select the individual characters from inside the house, and their interaction would allow you to switch to using them as your primary – meaning the house becomes a character select screen in a way.
Speaking of the character select screen, it would be useful to be able to port directly into the house from the character select screen or resume your previous location. it would also be nice if the background of the character select screen matched your house.
7. Grow items inside the house
Each house could come with a bunch of quests related to growing a tree or pet, so the more of the quests you complete, you get to watch your pet/plant get bigger. It could also have die if you did not log in a feed it.
This could be related to an achievement, to would encourage players to log in continuously – reaching 100 days of growth, 300 days of growth and spawning quests every few days that require you to fetch some element the plant/pet needs to keep maturing.
8. Storage capacity
Each house owned could increase your bank capacity by a relative size. So an apartment might give you 10 bank slots, while a manor would give you 100 extra bank slots.
This would encourage people to own multiple homes. Extra reward slots might be available if the house is fully furnished.
There are currently testing dummies available and it would be useful to be able to dress them up in an old armor set. This could also test the resistance that set gives, allowing you to compare your DPS without the set to the DPS with the set.
I would also like the see the option for display only mannequins, where you can remove a set from your inventory and display it on the dummy. If at a later stage you decide you want to use the set again, you can retrieve it from the dummy.
This allows you to save space, but also showcase some motifs you have earned and crafted. Costumes can also be applied to the mannequins, and they can be set into various poses, so that you can use them to setup photo shoots with your various older armors and if your alt characters are present in the house, they can be posed with the dummies.
10. Treasure chests and hidden gifts
It would be nice to place items from your inventory in packages, that can then be placed around the house property in hidden locations (and possibly opened with a puzzle, or keyed to only open for specific players) so that visitors can find the items you have left for them when they visit.
This encourages visitors to explore all areas of the house and also encourages people to visit the house. It is also a nice feature for guild events.
Additional expansions for houses – like jetty’s, dungeons, hidden rooms. Bigger houses have more expansion options and some expansions are dependent on features for the house – a jetty for example, cannot be added to a land locked house.
People are already very familiar with the design of the various houses, so having a completely new section added to the house, in a semi customizable way adds some variation to the different houses. Plus who doesn’t love a hidden trapdoor and secret rooms.
12. Additional houses added at various stages
A pirate ship, a cave dwelling …
13. House NPC’s (Butler, Stablemaster, Steward … or just a single one)
An NPC similar to the banker or merchant that will look after the house or parts of the house.
They could receive your mail, so all the materials received from the crafting passives can be accessed from a single point, without having to log into multiple accounts – since all the NPC’s could located in the house already.
They could assist with crafting, allowing you to use less resources to craft items. Also allowing for shorted research times. They might be able to fetch additional items, in the same way the existing crafting passives do.
They could feed horses automatically to increase mount speed/stamina/storage.
There could be the option for visiting NPC’s and messengers to find you at your house and drop off quests or items for you (if you have the relevant Dark Brotherhood passives enabled).
When visiting houses of people in your guild, it would be nice if there were a way to leave a comment for them – to let them know you have been there, or that you like a particular item in the house. You could obviously just send a mail, but since mails must be deleted their is no permanent way to record these comments, so a guestbook for the house might be a nice addition.
15. Tracking house activity while offline
I mentioned an ESO app before, and this is another area where it would be useful for ZOS to have such an app. You could get a notification if someone comes to visit your house while you are offline. It could even provide limited chat functionality. A security system for a house in a sense.
If not an app, it could just be seen in the guild history … player xxx visited player xyz’s residence. Although I do like the app idea better.
16. Resting bonus
After spending a set time in the house, you could get a small resting bonus … that perhaps just increases your XP/AP gained for a limited time, since you haven’t been earning much AP/XP while you have been in the house.
This along with the renting out houses below, allows for passive increase in XP, meaning you are constantly leveling (albeit at a much slower rate), even when you are not necessarily out killing things and completing quests.
17. Rent out multiple houses
Having a number of houses is expensive, so it would be nice to be able to rent them back out of NPC characters and get a small return on the investment. The more equipped your house is the more money you get back.
Perhaps this should only be available once you have the landlord achievement, and once you are renting you occasionally get quests to repair items in tenants homes or solve various problems for them.
This could allow people to gain XP without ever having to fight in battles and crafters can earn a living just doing what they love.
18. Access to the guild store/guild bank
While using the banker in the house environment, it would be nice if the relevant NPC could access the guild store/guild bank. So you can get full service while in the house.
This would allow you to park your alt characters in the home, where they can do crafting and live out their lives until they are called into action.