First Look: Creation Kit and Skyrim Workshop (Updated)

Update:

The Creation Kit is on track for release on Tuesday!

The Creation Kit and Skyrim Workshop (mods.elderscrolls.com) are nearly here! To get PC players ready for its release, watch our preview video and check out a new diary from Production Director Ashley Cheng.

Here’s Ash…

With each game we release — Morrowind, Oblivion, Fallout 3, and now Skyrim — modders continue to use our worlds as a canvas to build the most incredibly creative and fun mods in gaming. The fact that Morrowind’s modding community is still going strong 10 years after its release is a testament to how essential our community is to the success of our games.

We’re big believers that if we go the extra mile and make our games as moddable as possible, the game will only be better for it. So the gameplay of “do whatever you want” extends to “make the game do whatever you want.” As we were building Skyrim and its tools, we made it a goal to try and keep the transition from our previous titles to Skyrim as smooth as possible for modders. More importantly, we want to make it easier for more people to enjoy mods. So we teamed up with Valve and created the Skyrim Workshop. We couldn’t be more pleased with how it’s turning out. Mods are a big part of what makes our games special, so we urge everyone to try it out. We’re going to keep looking for ways to get mods to more people, and hopefully one day to our console audience.

With Skyrim Workshop, you can browse and search for the latest or highest rated mods, subscribe to any that interest you, rate your favorites and post feedback. Once you’ve subscribed to some mods, start the Skyrim launcher and you’ll see your subscribed mods automatically download. The launcher will even check if a mod has been updated and grab the latest version.

If you want to try making mods (and we think everybody should), the Creation Kit will be a free download via Steam under Tools. The Creation Kit has lots of new features, including the ability to build archives. Plus you’ll want to check out the Creation Kit Wiki, our online documentation and help file, for more details.

Of course, you’ll still be able to use popular fan-hosted mod sites like Skyrim Nexus to find great mods to play. We did not change any functionality to exclude the way mods worked previously. We even added a few features to help out — for instance, custom INI files can now be packaged into mods so you don’t need to backup your INI files anymore.

And we’re not done. Neither is Valve. Give us your feedback on the Creation Kit and Skyrim Workshop in our forums. We both have updates in the works, so give us your thoughts.

Big thanks to programmers Ken Cockerham, Mike Lipari, and Shannon Bailey for getting the Skyrim Workshop up and running with Skyrim. And special kudos to Joel Burgess (who originally brought up the idea of using Steam Workshop) for shepherding this process along the way.

We’d also like to give big shout outs to Valve. We are all big Valve fan boys. Thanks to David Sawyer, Josh Weier, Pieter Wycoff, Kurtis Chinn, Tom Bui, Alden Kroll and Jason Holtman.

Finally, we’d like to thank all the modders who volunteered to beta test the Creation Kit and Skyrim Workshop. Your feedback has been invaluable.

We can’t wait to see your work!

Skyrim lands on Conan O’Brien, front page of the Wall Street Journal

On last night’s episode of Conan, longtime sidekick Andy Richter shared a segment about his magnificent voice work for Skyrim. Too bad he wasn’t a member of the cast… apparently it increases your shot at landing an Oscar nomination.

Elsewhere, today’s front page of The Wall Street Journal includes a feature about players taking the peaceful/pacifist route when playing Skyrim. The article includes quotes from Todd Howard and Felix the Peaceful Monk creator, Daniel Mullins.

Skyrim around the web

We’re back with more of our favorite Skyrim videos, comics, awards, and more. One of my personal favorites this month was  live-action tribute, Fus Ro Dah!!!!. Watch it above..

Elsewhere on the web, check out these Skyrim-related goodies…

Last but not least, visit Game of the Year Picks Blog to check out an updated list of the GOTY awards Skyrim has received. By their count, the game has won 190 GOTY awards — making it the third Bethesda Game Studios title to be named their “Big Winner”.

Now on Steam: Beta Update for Skyrim (Updated)

Update 2/2: With the 1.4 update available, we have disabled the beta update. Thanks to everyone that participated.

Update 1/30: A third beta update (1.4.21) is now available on Steam. The update features one new change:

  • Fixed bug related to hitching between cell boundaries.

We really appreciate the feedback from our Steam Beta. We anticipate the 1.4 update going live this week for all on the PC and being sent to the console manufacturers. The Creation Kit won’t be far behind.

Update 1/26: A new version of the Beta Update (1.4.20) is now live on Steam. It addresses the following:

  • Fixed occasional audio issue that would play sound effects louder than intended
  • Master Criminal achievement/trophy unlocks properly in French, German, Spanish and Italian
  • Fixed issue where dragon priest masks would not render correctly
  • Fixed issue where player would be unable to become Thane of Riften if they purchased a home first

Original Post: Skyrim is using Steam’s beta functionality to give users an early look at the 1.4 Update currently in development.

What does beta mean? This patch is still in development. Apply the update at your own risk and only if you are affected by issues listed in the fix notes.

Be sure to back up your saved games or simply be careful not to overwrite your existing saves. If you decide to opt out of the beta program, your old saves will still work with the current release of Skyrim (v 1.3).

To get the beta, you need to do the following:

  1. Log into Steam
  2. Click on Steam in the upper menu
  3. Select Settings
  4. Under the Account tab, go to the Beta Participation section and select Change.
  5. A drop down menu will appear. Select Skyrim Beta.
  6. Select OK.
  7. Steam will now restart. After Steam restarts, Skyrim will be updated to the Beta version currently available.

If you decide you don’t want to run the Beta anymore, redo steps 1 – 4. At the drop down, select NONE – Opt out of all beta programs. Let Steam restart, and Skyrim will automatically update itself back to the latest released version.

To provide feedback on the beta update, use our beta forum.

Skyrim voice actors collect Oscar noms

The nominees for the 2012 Academy Awards were announced this morning, and two Skyrim voice actors were amongst those honored in the Best Supporting Actor category.

Christopher Plummer — voice of Skyrim’s Arngeir — was nominated for his work in “Beginners,” while Max von Sydow — Esbern himself — was recognized for his role in “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.”

Congrats to them both!

News on the Creation Kit and Game Updates

It’s been a few weeks since our last update on Skyrim’s status, so we wanted to share details on what we’re working on.

The Creation Kit and Steam Workshop are nearly ready. We’re currently working with members of Valve and our modding community to do some final testing, and we’re on track for a public release near the end of the month. We think Skyrim modding is one of the game’s best features, and we have the best modders of any game. It’s been a lot of exciting work for us, and we can’t wait to unleash it.

Skyrim’s 1.4 update is currently undergoing testing on all three platforms. The update will include fixes and optimizations for the most common issues people have been reporting (see below). We’re hoping to finalize this next week, and submit it to the console manufacturers for certification, as well as release on PC.

Our current update plan for the PC is to first release our updates as “beta” versions through Steam. This is something you’ll be able to opt into through Steam and back-out of if needed. This is an extra safety check for everyone going forward and should expedite and improve our updating process for our PC users. We’ll have more info soon on how this will work.

Echoing what we said back in December, we’ll continue to look into issues that are being reported and subsequent updates will follow. You have all supported Skyrim in a huge way, and we’ll be supporting all of you, and continue to make the game better.

After the break, check out the current changelog for 1.4.

Continue reading full article ›

AIAS Nominees Announced

Today on Gamespot, the nominees for this year’s Interactive Achievement Awards were announced. We’re excited to share news that Skyrim was nominated in six categories (including Game of the Year), while id Software’s RAGE is up for Outstanding Achievement in Visual Engineering.

Below is the full rundown of nominations…

Skyrim – Game of the Year, Outstanding Achievement in Story, Role-Playing/Massively Multiplayer Game of the Year, Outstanding Innovation in Gaming, Outstanding Achievement in Game Play Engineering, and Outstanding Achievement in Game Direction.

RAGE – Outstanding Achievement in Visual Engineering

Join us in congratulating the teams at Bethesda Game Studios and id Software on their well-deserved nominations.

Skyrim Awesomesauce!

Welcome back for another roundup. Plenty of fun happenings Skyrim happenings around the web! We start with Skyrim: 2012, a fan video created by GoBroPros that shows what happens when Skyrim and real life cross over. The video has some pretty great post-production effects and definitely had folks smiling around the office. For more fun stuff, check out these links…

In other news, Skyrim has received a few more awards around the web, including Game of the Year from RipTen, EGM, Examiner, and The Escapist.