Before we look forward to Skyrim, we first look back to Oblivion.Last week we marked the fifth anniversary of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion’s release. In this episode of the podcast, we revisit the game that served as a landmark for Bethesda. Listen as key team members recount their memories of working on the project, followed by a roundtable discussion with Todd Howard and Pete Hines.
Matt back with another update from around the web.
Up first, G4TV let us know today they’ve kicked off a new deathmatch to determine the greatest game franchise of all time. Both Elder Scrolls and Fallout are in the tournament and up against stiff competition. In the first round, the Elder Scrolls faces Street Fighter, while Fallout squares off with Civilization. To vote, head to G4TV.com and register. I recommend listening to “You’re The Best” from the Karate Kid soundtrack as you vote.
It’s been awhile since we updated you on Skyrim. For all of you looking for every bit of info between now and 11.11.11, you might find something of interest below…
- OXM UK brings their Skyrim coverage online with a preview, podcast interview with Pete, and an interview with Todd. And for those with Xbox LIVE in the UK, you can check out video interviews conducted with Todd Howard and Bruce Nesmith.
- Planet Elder Scrolls interviewed me to celebrate the site’s 10th anniversary (congrats!).
- G4TV and IGN show how far BGS have come with Skyrim in comparison to Oblivion.
- A nice user-made piano tribute to Skyrim’s theme.
- Rolling Stone leads off their feature on the biggest games of 2011 with Skyrim. Article also mentions RAGE.
- NowGamer and Game Rant discuss what’s been learend about the game so far.
- CVG discuss what they want to see in Skyrim.
Switching gears to Brink, be sure to check out The Video Game Writers, who have new features on Brink each day this week. So far they’ve talked with lead writer Ed Stern about how Brink takes notes from previous games, how Splash Damage is decreasing the learning curve and increasing the game’s fun, as well as conceptualization and replayability for Brink.
Speaking of Brink, if you’re wondering about the Ark image above, it was sent to our blog inbox from fan Tsenttachi,who created it in Minecraft. If you’ve made any Bethesda-themed creations in the game, feel free to email them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
That about does it for this round. See ya next time.
In case you’ve been staring at the trailer for the last 24 hours (we’ve been doing that too), wanted to remind you to explore our new Elder Scrolls website. Front and center on the site is Skyrim, for which you can find the latest media, news coverage, wallpapers, and more.
The site also has plenty of cool stuff from previous games in the series. You can watch game introductions and trailers, read archived team diaries for Morrowind and Oblivion, and yes, you can once again download Arena and Daggerfall for FREE.
In the community section, be sure to check out the first team diary for Skyrim, Welcome Back Elder Scrolls, written by Todd Howard. Todd discusses the excitement of returning to Tamriel after creating Fallout 3, and how both the series and team have evolved. Here’s an excerpt…
“To do that this time, we knew, like before, we had to start over. We needed to reinvent large parts of the game and its technology. We started with the graphics renderer, and how we would bring the scale of snow covered mountains, dynamic weather systems, and massive dragons to life along with the small details of how people lived; from the forks they used, to the fish they caught, and the meat they cooked. We then rewrote all the major graphics and gameplay systems including lighting, shadows, level of detail, animation, interface, scripting, dialogue, quest systems, melee, magic, and more. All of those changes made it into our internal editor as well. So much had changed that we decided to call the engine and editor by a new name, the Creation Engine and the Creation Kit. We can’t wait to see what all the brilliant mod makers do with these tools.”
Read the rest here. The diary is accomodated by our newest team photo, which I had the privilege to snap last week. If you’re wondering why they’re smiling, there’s plenty of good reasons: 1) It was Friday, 2) our happy hour was about to begin, and 3) Like you, they’re fans of the series and can’t wait for you guys to have a chance to play it.
Between now and 11.11.11, stay tuned for new updates on the site.
Continuing the love fest, we wanted to share these five pieces of concept art — created by Adam Adamowicz and Ray Lederer.
Forget flowers and chocolates. To help celebrate Valentine’s Day a little early, this week we released 10 Skyrim screenshots online. Enjoy!
Bethesda Game Studios and Bethesda Softworks
Today on OXM UK’s Facebook page, they’ve teased the Skyrim cover story that hits newsstands this Thursday. If you’re in the UK, be sure to check it out.
If you’re somewhere else in Europe/Australia, keep an eye out for these features on the game
Official Xbox Magazine — on shelves February 10th
Official PlayStation Magazine — on shelves February 16th
PlayStation Le Magazine Officiel — available now
Computer Bild Spiele — available now
Power Unlimited — available now
Micromania — available now
Giochi per Il Mio Computer — available now
Gamereactor — available now
Game Informer — available now
This morning I received emails from members, moderators, and even Todd Howard himself about this Skyrim announcement trailer tribute.
Wanted to share word on a few community contests that were brought to my attention.
The Nexus community sites (as in New Vegas Nexus and TESNexus) are closing in on reaching 2.5 million registered members. To celebrate the occasion, they’ve kicked off a modding competition on both site. The site’s administrator, DarkOne, details the competition’s rules here. Here’s an excerpt…
“Ergo the theme of this modding competition will be “The community we are in”. I’m hoping to see some great mods that cover users in the community that might have influenced you during your time here, the various sites of the community that you are a part of (it doesn’t just have to be the Nexus!) and what you like about the community.
The type of mod you make, be it a quest, a new landmass, a house or castle, NPCs, weapons, armour, etc. is totally up to you but I will look more favourably upon entries that have a quest in them because I’m a sucker for a good quest! That doesn’t mean a mod with a quest in is going to win, however, and if you come up with something really unique then I’ll probably love it! A Nexus defence mod, for example, where you defend fort Nexus from a horde of trolls with your fellow moderators wielding ban hammers by your side is something I’ve dreamt about… “
Elsewhere, TES Alliance has already kicked off their Salute to Skyrim contest. As the title indicates, it’s a competition where users are encouraged to pay tribute to Skyrim — whether it be a mod for Morrowind or Oblivion, artwork, poetry, etc.. For more details, check out the contest page on TES Alliance.
In February’s issue of Game Informer, one of the new gameplay elements revealed for Skyrim was dragon shouts. Learn more about how they work, and how the language was created from scratch in Matt Miller’s new feature up at GameInformer.com. Below is an small excerpt from the article…
“It’s in the lore,” declares game director Todd Howard. “It was like the classic barbarian battle cry. I’m not sure if it showed up in a book in Daggerfall, but it’s definitely mentioned in this pocket guide to the empire that we did for Redguard. It was the idea that the Nords had these battle cries, and they would shout at their enemies.” As the team at Bethesda began to design The Elder Scrolls V, they latched onto this little piece of mythology, and the way it could tie back to the dragons – powerful creatures that had been absent from the world for thousands of years.
Read more — including how Emil Pagliarulo worked on creating the language – here. Oh, and did we mention there’s a new screenshot and concept art!?!