ZeniMax Online game director Matt Firor has posted an update to the Elder Scrolls Online web site indicating the long-awaited massively multiplayer online game The Elder Scrolls Online will be released on April 4, 2014. It's coming to OS X and Windows first, with console versions to follow in June.

The Elder Scrolls is a series of action-oriented role playing games set in the fantasy realm of Tamriel, populated by humans, elves, orcs and fantastic creatures, magic, sorcery and other tropes of high fantasy games. The series dates back to 1994. It's gotten progressively more ambitious and high-budget, culminating in 2011's launch of Skyrim.

The Elder Scrolls Online has been in development for several years, but was first announced in spring of 2012. The game is a prequel of sorts, set centuries before the events in past Elder Scrolls games like Morrowind, Oblivion and Skyrim. Players join one of three factions which vie for control of the emperor's throne. Multiplayer combat was introduced to the Elder Scrolls games dating back in 1997 with the release of Battlespire, but this is the first proper MMO set in the Elder Scrolls world.

Firor noted that "just about every one" of the four million people who have signed up for the beta will get the chance to play the game at some point prior to launch. Because ZeniMax is expecting worldwide demand for The Elder Scrolls Online to be high, they're staggering the launch, with the Mac and windows version to appear first, on April 4, 2014, then the PS4 and Xbox One version to follow in June.