The Elder Scrolls Online Horns of The Reach - Battlegrounds Update

The upcoming Update 15 and the Horns of the Reach DLC for The Elder Scrolls Online that launch later this August will add some new PvP features to the game. In particular, the players will get the chance to play Chaosball, an entirely new Battlegrounds game mode, and fight on a new 4v4v4 Arcane University Arena. Be advised, however, that the Morrowind expansion is required to participate in the new PvP content. Here's a bit more on these new Battlegrounds features:


When Update 15 and the Horns of the Reach DLC game pack update arrives, you will be able to play a brand-new Battlegrounds game mode as part of the regular Grab Bag queue: Chaosball.

In Chaosball, your goal is simple: capture and hold onto the “ball" for as long as possible to earn points for your team. The team that reaches 500 points or has the most points when the timer runs out, wins.

Of course, holding onto the ball is not as easy as it sounds. While the other teams try to steal it from you, the ball itself will hit you with a healing and shield debuff and cause irresistible damage to you and nearby teammates that increases over time. Hot potato!

While carrying the ball, you can use your character's abilities to defend yourself and stay alive, but you can't drop the ball or pass it to your fellow players. That means that whoever carries the ball has it for life--as long or as short as that may be! This challenges your team to bring new and unique strategies to the Battlegrounds and places greater emphasis on traditional PvE roles like tanking and healing.

Even by Battlegrounds standards, Chaosball matches are especially fast-paced and, well… chaotic, making it a perfect addition to the current rotation of game modes.


The other big addition to Battlegrounds included with Update 15 is an exciting new map we've also added to the Grab Bag queue: Arcane University.

This new arena is set in the crumbling ruins of Cyrodiil's once great institution of learning, long since decimated by the Soulburst and the Daedric occupation. The university, which stands in the shadow of the White-Gold Tower, is a challenging Battlegrounds location for both warrior academics and learned heroes alike.

Arcane University is slightly larger than the three original Battlegrounds maps, and it brings dangerous urban-based close combat via crumbling buildings and other line-of-sight breakers in tandem with heavy vertical elements.

When inside the university itself, you can use stairs to climb up to the building's middle level and a series of portals (similar to those found in Ularra) to teleport to the upper level. This will allow you to ambush the enemy teams below and move safely from one side of the map to the other. If you're clever, you can even find places on the upper level where you can utilize abilities like the Sorcerer's Bolt Escape to quickly travel from one side to the other, helping you elude enemy pursuit.

Be warned, however, as these useful portals also have a dangerous side-effect: they can turn you into a ticking time bomb!

For the majority of the match, the portals can be found with a glowing blue light, but at certain random intervals, they will glow red instead. If you use a red portal, you'll receive the “Mark of the Worm," and your character will explode after a short period of time, causing massive damage in a large radius. This damage will hurt you and your teammates, but it will also harm nearby enemies, making this environmental hazard both a danger and an opportunity.

Are you about to be overwhelmed by enemy combatants? Make the ultimate sacrifice by acquiring the mark and turning yourself into a human bomb! Is a teammate trying to return the flag or protect the ball? Acquire the mark and use it to ward off pursuers. Even better, why not double down and use the Alliance War Proximity Detonation ability for an even bigger bang?

Regardless of the game mode, the portals will ensure that every Battlegrounds match in the Arcane University will be an explosive one. Look out!