Friday, March 27, 2015

Getting Started in ESO (or WTF is the minimap?)

Alrighty, so you bought the ESO box, you've installed, downloaded the 25gb or so of patches, made a toon, did the tutorial and now you're out and about and hitting m every 5 seconds because you don't have a minimap! Also, you might have some guards after you because you mis-clicked and stole something. Well, I'm here to help!

No, there is no way to enable a mini-map, you need an addon for that. But, the addon system is very user-friendly, and heck, there's even a program like curse for wow to keep track of 'em and install them for you. It's called Minion and you can find it here. It's pretty self-explanatory, go to find more to find addons, installed is the addons you already have, ect.

If you don't want an addon-manager, you can download addons from such sites as esoui (I've gotten a couple from there, no horrible doom thus far). Download 'em, unzip into Documents/Elder Scrolls Online/live (or liveeu)/AddOns  (path is for Win 8.1 and default install, your path may vary), and load up the game.

Once you've got the game going, just go to the addons option in the main menu. From there you can enable and disable individual addons, enable out-of-date ones, all the normal things. If you want to change the settings of a particular addon, you want to check in settings, not addons (that threw me a bit at first).

Now, the most important part, what addons do you want? Well, I can't read your mind, but I can tell you what I'm using, starting with the two that solve the no mini-map and stealing issues.

First off, we have No Accidental Stealing, which does what it says on the tin. Or, to be more specific, you can't steal unless you're already sneaking (and you probably always want to be sneaking and hidden when stealing unless you like running from the guards).

Second, MiniMap by Fyrakin. Yes, now you have a minimap! And you can even mess around with transparency and make it look all pretty.

Beyond that, there's a ton more. I have Foundry Tactical Combat, Esohead, Lorebooks, SkyShards, Wykkyd's Quest Tracker (love this one!), Inventory Grid View (another highly recommended one because the default inventory is not so good), AI Research Grid, and a bunch of others. See...

As you go along, you'll likely find things you think could be made easier to manage, and hey, there's probably an addon for that, just like in WoW! (And I have no economy addons because I have no reason to, not because they don't exist).

So go forth and play! After all, if you don't like the addon, you can always uninstall it, no harm no foul.


  1. I actually recommend playing without the minimap for a bit. It is a change, and you'll be pulling up the map often. But I found that not having the minimap immersed you into the world more, made you navigate using landmarks and recognizing scenery. I thought removing the minimap actually made the game better.

  2. When I was playing over the summer, I was without a minimap the entire time, and while I got to the point that I could navigate quite well in landscape, I had some issues in cities. I navigate in RL via a combination of landmark recognition and maps in my head (and am damn good at it), but in game I have a bit of trouble. The minimap makes cities much easier for me to figure out since I'm not pausing at every intersection to verify which road. It's also something that the friends I got to try the game complained bitterly about, so I figured it was a good thing to write about.

    Probably doesn't help my learning areas that I'm playing three toons, one in each covenant. Damn ESO, making all their classes fun in different ways and also making the world so big and pretty! :)