Skyrim roundup: Vampires, DLC news, QuakeCon/Gamescom, and more!

In a few hours, fans at PAX Prime will finally be able to play Skyrim for the first time. Until then, we wanted to share the latest Skyrim news from around the web.

Earlier this morning, Microsoft announced that the first two pieces of game add-on content for Skyrim will be releasing exclusively on Xbox 360 — 30 days before they’re available anywhere else. When we have more details on the content, we’ll let everyone know.

Elsewhere, don’t miss Dave Oshry’s Skyrim preview posted yesterday at RipTen. The preview is significant, as he’s the first person we know that encountered vampires in his playthrough. Read the four-page preview here.

Fun fact: Pete Hines is actually dragonborn. At least that’s my explanation for how he survived all the interviews he did at Gamescom.With more than 275,000 attendees in Cologne last week, Pete used the power of the voice to conduct countless interviews with sites like Gamespot, ComputecDestructoid, and FBC.

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New CE pics of Alduin, the World Eater

I’ve got good news and bad news…

Bad news: I no longer have the 12″ Alduin statue from the Skyrim CE on my desk. Womp Waaah!

Good news: I’ve got new pictures, courtesy of our expert marketing artist, Lindsay Westcott!

If you want your own statue, visit the official Elder Scrolls website for pre-order info. And when I get more CE goodies to share (hopefully at my desk), I’ll share pics on the blog.

The Races and Faces of Skyrim

Long hair. Short hair. No hair. Dirty faces. Dirty beards. War Paint. Crazy eyes. Argonian eyes.

Like Bubba from Forrest Gump, we could go on for days talking about the different customization options you’ll have with Skyrim. But instead, we decided to share the preset options you’ll have when you start your adventure. Above is a sampling of choices you can make for the men and women of Skyrim… the Nords.

Check out the other nine races after the break (or by visiting our Flickr page).

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PAX Prime Plans!

With PAX Prime 2011 kicking off on Friday, we wanted to share details on what we’re planning.

At our booth (#1314), you won’t want to miss your chance to play RAGE, as well as presentations of Prey 2 at the top of every hour. On top of that, fans will be able to play Skyrim for the first time!

But wait, there’s more! At 3:30 pm on Saturday, Todd Howard will be giving a special presentation of the game in the Unicorn theater. Seating is expected to be limited, so you will definitely want to line up early. As a bonus, everyone that attends the demo will receive a ticket which can be redeemed at our booth for a Skyrim plush helmet — just like the one being modeled by our lovely 2008 PAX statue, Burnadette.

If you’re not able to get the helmet at the presentation, you can also visit our Skyrim food truck to grab one. Located at 9th & Pine (across from the Paramount Theater) from 11:30 to 3:00 pm Saturday, the truck will feature the following foods fit for a Nord:

To see where else the food truck is headed… visit GamesRadar.

Journalists in Skyrim: New character screens! (Updated for Argonian fans)

More press had a chance to check out Skyrim during this year’s QuakeCon, and each journalist that attended left with a unique screenshot — that of the character they created while previewing the game.

Now these screens are starting to go up at the various outlets, giving you a better look at the numerous permutations the Skyrim character creation allows. Plenty more are set to go up, but check out released screens at the following places:

When Vault Boy Met Ally

When I recently moved into a new office, many of my colleagues joked that I was just moving a toy chest. Vault Boy bobbleheads, Darth Tater, Solid Snake w/kung fu grip, the always entertaining Exorcist-inspired music box… the list goes on and on.

And now I have a new toy. Today at my desk sits Alduin statue número uno. Created by the IP Factory, the 12-inch statue comes with our newly-announced collector’s edition.

We’ll have more on the CE soon. In the meantime, I’ll be sitting here imagining Vault Boy using dragon shouts against Alduin.

QuakeCon 2011: Skyrim hands-on previews (Updated)

UPDATED 8/9: In addition to Todd’s stage demo at E3, we’ve various press folks go hands on with the game for the first time. Below are some of the initial previews making their way online. As we find more, we’ll keep you posted.

  • Kotaku — “It’s amazing”
  • 1Up — “Bethesda has crafted such a large and all-encompassing realization of the Elder Scrolls universe in this newest installment, that dipping your toe into the pool only results in your entire leg being dragged into the water by the game’s vicious undercurrent.”
  • Game Informer (more here) — “Overall, Skyrim played great. The framerate was fluid, the combat satisfying, and the world beckons more exploration.”
  • Eurogamer — “RPGs send you into menus more than almost any other game genre, so it’s weird that more thought doesn’t go into inventory design, but as I play around with powers, weapons and items to lighten my load it becomes clear that Skyrim is a welcome exception.”
  • Destructoid — “After spending an hour aimlessly exploring a very tiny area of Skyrim’s world, I’m convinced Bethesda will deliver on Oblivion’s promise while outdoing any previous ambitions.”
  • Gamespot – “Our hands-on time with Skyrim left us with the impression that Bethesda isn’t trying to reinvent The Elder Scrolls formula; instead, it’s taking what was great about the previous games and adding some interesting new content on top of it.”
  • Neowin — “Even though we only saw The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim for just a few minutes it’s clear that Bethesda Game Studios is going all out to make this latest game in this long running RPG series the best yet.”
  • IGN — “The view from a snow-choked cave mouth to distant mountains wreathed in a drifting cloak of cloud is clear and detailed.”
  • G4TV — “Skyrim did not disappoint, and I’m eagerly awaiting getting back into that world to wreak some havoc.”
  • GameSpy – “Frankly, it’s a little exhilarating.”
  • AusGamers — “…this is probably the most tantalising hour I’ve spent with a game in a long time…”

And in case you missed it, read how one woman went into labor during Todd’s Skyrim presentation.

Golden Joysticks: Vote for Skyrim, Fallout: New Vegas, and Brink

The UK’s biggest gaming awards, The Golden Joysticks, have announced their shortlist nominees. Fallout: New Vegas is nominated for two awards — Ultimate GOTY and Best RPG. Additionally, you can vote for Skyrim in this year’s One To Watch category as well as Brink in the Best Shooter category.

To learn more, visit the Golden Joysticks website.

QuakeCon 2011: Skyrim Collector’s Edition Announced!!!

For months many of you have asked for details on whether or not there will be Collector’s Edition for Skyrim. At the end of a rousing QuakeCon presentation, game director Todd Howard confirmed its existence.

The limited collector’s edition for The Elder Scrolls® V: Skyrim™ will be available for Xbox 360, PS3, and Games for Windows and can be pre-ordered now through participating retailers in North America, Europe and Australia. Like the regular release of the game, the Collector’s Edition will be available on 11.11.11

In addition to including the highly-anticipated game, this premium version of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim also includes:

  • 12” Alduin Statue: Created in conjunction with the IP Factory, this collector’s only statue stands 12” tall and is made of high quality PVC. Modeled from actual in-game 3D digital files, it showcases Alduin, the World Eater. He stands perched atop one the game’s many dragon walls that teach the player the lethal language of dragons.
  • ‘The Art of Skyrim’ coffee table book: Featuring over 200 pages of striking, full-color illustrations, sketches and models, this stunning 9 3/8” x 12 1/8” coffee table book showcases the characters, creatures, environments, and weaponry of Skyrim. With a foreword by game director Todd Howard and commentary from Bethesda Game Studios artists, readers will be guided through the game’s iconic visual style.
  • ‘The Making of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim’ DVD This documentary DVD contains exclusive, behind-the-scenes footage, including interviews with the Bethesda Game Studios team as they take you from concept to creation and provide insights into the story, gameplay, setting, legacy of the Elder Scrolls franchise, and much more.

The Collector’s Edition will be available through pre-order and it retails for $149.99 (US), €149.99 (Europe), £129.99 (UK), and A$199.99 (Australia). If you’re interested in purchasing, we recommend you pre-order asap, as the it will be available in extremely limited quantities.

Pre-Order up at Amazon.com, GameStop, Walmart and Best Buy — more listing to come!