Interview: Skyrim Rocks

This week members of BGS pointed me to a fascinating read at Geo-HeritageScience — a blog from London resident, Jane Robb. With Bachelor and Master’s degrees in geology and years of work in the geoscience field (she current works  as a Communications Officer at Geology for Global Development), she definitely has a thing for rocks.

But she also enjoys spending free time playing videogames. During her adventures playing Skyrim, her passions collided, and she began to hypothesize about the location of specific rock deposits across the game’s regions. Here’s an excerpt from her post:

Here are the eight different kinds of rocks found in Skyrim. Not all of them are actually real however so the ones I will be discussing today are iron ore, gold ore, moonstone ore and malachite ore. Some notes: malachite is actually an ore in itself (of copper) and you do not get an ore of malachite; moonstone is a mineral and corundum is real (a mineral) but is found in Blackreach which is underground and cannot be shown on the Skyrim map.

“Here are the eight different kinds of rocks found in Skyrim. Not all of them are actually real however so the ones I will be discussing today are iron ore, gold ore, moonstone ore and malachite ore. Some notes: malachite is actually an ore in itself (of copper) and you do not get an ore of malachite; moonstone is a mineral and corundum is real (a mineral) but is found in Blackreach which is underground and cannot be shown on the Skyrim map”

Be sure to read the whole article at her blog, and then come back and check our our interview below. Modders should take particular notice!

How did you come to play Skyrim? Does your geology background factor into the games you choose to play?

I was initially introduced to the gaming world by my boyfriend several years ago as before I had never touched a console. I was instantly hooked. I mainly loved watching him play but then along came Oblivion. My boyfriend recommended it to me as he knew I loved fantasy (I read lots of fantasy novels and watch films) and I fell in love with the game. Needless to say I was then totally excited for Skyrim to come out, and completed the game and the first DLC in half the time it took him to play!

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Dishonored: Awards & All the text that’s fit to print

After picking up the Action-Adventure Game of the Year from the VGAS, Dishonored has continued to possess the hearts and minds of critics. Announced earlier today, Dishonored received four nominations from the Game Developers Choice Awards, including Best Game Design, Best Visuals Arts, Best Narrative and, overall Game of the Year. For more, visit the awards’ official website.

In other award news, we’re two weeks away from the 16th Annual DICE Awards, where Dishonored is nominated for five awards. Nominations include Outstanding Achievement in Game Direction and Adventure Game of the Year.

Additional web highlights to check out include:

  • PC Gamer – What if Dishonored was an early 80s text-adventure? PC Gamer fantasizes about such a prospect.
  • Electric Playground – Learn what’s on Harvey Smith’s mind in a new interview for the EP podcast
  • Unleash the Fanboy– Recounting favorite moments of 2012, the site recounts “… the intoxicating view of the Victorian, steam-punk city of Dunwall.”
  • PC Games N – Read how the game’s Heart changed robzacny’s approach to the game, and creating a “balancing act between moral vanity and damnation”.

With so many things to love about Dishonored, OXM UK recently put together a wishlist for a Dishonored follow up. Read the article and share your ideas in the comment section below.

ESO Update

With our new trailer and beta sign up for The Elder Scrolls Online, there’s been plenty of excitement this week surrounding the game — including new interviews with key members of the development team at ZeniMax Online Studios.

In addition to our latest episode of The Bethesda Podcast (featuring Matt Firor, Jo Burba, and Paul Sage), be sure to check out these sites:

  • MMORPG –Following our Beta annoucement, creative director Paul Sage took to Skype for a live interview with MMORPG.com. Watch it here.
  • Curse — In a new video, the Curse Entertainment team shares five reasons you’ll want to play ESO
  • NBC News — Game Director Matt Firor discusses the significance of beta and the excitement of bringing the MMO genre to the Elder Scrolls’ fanbase.
  • 3News.co.nz — Firor discusses the game’s timeline in TES lore, storyline, and more.
  • TESOF — Read a new editorial on how gameplay mechanics in ESO will be successful
  • Game Informer — Ben Reeves discusses ESO lore with Paul Sage and Rich Lambert
  • PC Gamer — You’ve probably already watched our Alliances at War video, but we all got a kick out of their fantastic headline for Lead Loremaster, Lawrence Schick.

After all that, don’t forget to check out the latest on ElderScrollsOnline.com this week. Highlights include Part 2 of their Ask Us Anything for the Daggerfall Convenant, new Developer Questions of the Week, and new social media avatars and wallpapers.

Elder Scrolls Online: Sign Up for Beta Today!

Big news for Elder Scrolls fans. You can now officially sign up for the Elder Scrolls Online beta program! Visit http://signup.elderscrollsonline.com/ to provide your information.

If selected, you will be one of the first people to embark upon the newest Elder Scrolls adventure, and help us beta test The Elder Scrolls Online. Please be aware that this is just beta sign-ups. The first beta test will begin soon—watch our official website, Facebook, and Twitter for an announcement about the first round of invites.

And in honor of opening beta sign-ups, we have released The Elder Scrolls Online – The Alliances Cinematic Trailer. Watch the trailer above.

Finally, Nick and I visited ZeniMax Online Studios to learn more about the beta program for our latest edition of The Bethesda Podcast. Featuring Matt Firor, Paul Sage, and Jo Burba, the podcast details specifics of the beta and includes questions submitted to @bethblog on Twitter.

Grab the podcast episode via any of the following methods:

Skyrim Roundup

Happy Inauguration Day! If you’re looking for a break from all the coverage on TV, there’s tons of Skyrim stories and videos worth checking out — beginning with fatawesomefilm’s spoof of inventory management in Skyrim. Watch in the embed above.

For more Skyrim highlights from around the web, visit these links:

Lastly, modders will want to check out Hritik Vaishnav’s mod, HD Enhanced Terrain, which was recently highlighted on Polygon. Check out the video below, and download the mod at Skyrim Nexus.

 That’s all the Skyrim news for this week. Later this week we’ll roundup all things Dishonored.

ESO: Alliances at War

In The Elder Scrolls Online, the Aldmeri Dominion, Daggerfall Covenant, and Ebonheart Pact are embroiled in a full-scale war, but that was not always the case. What led each alliance to feel that war was the only option? What are their reasons and motives for fighting? Who are the key people and groups involved? In our latest developer video, “Alliances at War”, Loremaster Lawrence Schick answers these questions and more.

For more on the game’s alliances, visit ElderScrollsOnline.com.

The Dragonborn Comes in February (and Dawnguard & Hearthfire, too)

PC and PS3 fans, prepare to cast off. Next month, you will travel to Solstheim, home of Skyrim’s latest add-on, Dragonborn. PS3 fans can expect an expanded itinerary – with stops at Fort Dawnguard and Castle Volkihar – before heading back to the home of your dreams. Details below:

PC: On Tuesday, February 5th, Dragonborn will be available on Steam, including the English, French, Italian, Spanish and German versions of the content.

PlayStation 3: Dragonborn will be the first add-on arriving on PSN in February. Hearthfire will release next, followed by Dawnguard, and all three should be out in February. The 1.8 update will also release, just prior to Dragonborn. We’ll keep you posted as release dates get finalized both on our end and with Sony for each and its various languages. Last but not least, each one will be 50% off during their launch week on PSN.

Over the last year, it’s been a treat for us to work on new content for Skyrim, and we’re excited that it will soon be available for everyone to explore. Thanks for all your support and sharing your adventures with us.