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.

Reader Comments

  1. I’m stoked for this patch. First thing i do every day is check to see if the patch is there yet (ps3) realistically though, the beta testers are reporting all sorts of problems and a release within these three days seems unplausable.

    If you’re reading this Dev’s, we’d be happy to see the fixes even if it takes a while longer than planned 🙂 And is a fix comming for the Alduin’s Wall quest? where Esbern and the lady won’t proceed if you’ve solved the bridge puzzle pre-quest?

    keep up the good work! thanks

  2. I played Skyrim 1.4 beta for 90 mins today, with no blue screens or crashes. That is a first for me – previously versions had a mtbf of about 10 mins. Was showing slight signs of memory leaks towards the end (initial image rendering of new rooms slowing down) but this is a night-vs-day change. I have NVidia/Windows7 64-bit. This is the version that Bethesday should have released with!

  3. Thanks alot.

    But please consider to fix the bugs within the Mages Guild Questlines, e.g. the not-appearance/not-interaction of Gavros Plinuius within ‘Unreveling the Unseen’ ….

  4. PLEASE sombody!!
    If anybody else is having this problem please reply, My main character with over 150 hrs of gameplay has become unbearable to play. When i pull up the favorites menu it takes about 6-10 seconds to respond then when i try to select somthing it takes another 5-8 seconds to register. It takes forever to load when i first get on and the rest of the playing time. My bookcases still dont work in the windhelm home, or the weapon stands. I am begging anybody that may know whats wrong or how to fix it to respond. I am playing on the Xbox360 and i only have two more achievments for this game and i would already have them if i could play this character.


  5. is the stones of barenziah glitch where you already have all 24 stones before getting them appraised by Vex…therefore making the no stone unturned mission impossible to continue going to be fixed? or should I start over for a 5th time on my PS3 version. The PS3 version is definitely the most addictive and frustrating game I have ever played, but thank you for all the hard work to fix all the hundreds of glitches

  6. I do hope this patch happens quickly for PC because I would really like it to hit the xbox soon i shld be thanes riften dag nabbet! 🙁 also i don’t think it matters at this point as I’ve beaten the game but I hate that i could not get the dragonpotion to work prior w\esbern..dead bodies in windhelms palace sucks too.

  7. Bethesda: “We don’t feel like testing this patch, as usual. We’ll just give it to PC players in the form of a beta and let them test it for us, so we can release it on all platforms. After all we allow our customers to pay us to be beta testers instead of doing the work ourselves.”

    • You are aware that different PC users have different hardware set ups? This is the easiest way for them to fix it for everyone without having to have PCs with every possible set up and configuration imaginable.

      I am sure if you’d prefer, Bethesda could just release patches that work for them and not care if they work for anyone else.

      Personally, I like that they are willing to come to us for help and not just release a patch that may or may not work for everyone.

  8. When are you going to patch the Glory of the Dead quest so the Companions line can be completed? Or the bug in the Book of Love quest so that someone can get married?

  9. I still have moments of bug in Oblivion. Anyone here expects Skyrim stable for 2012??
    Was a beautiful wedding, Bethesda + id software. Basically the “father of openworld rpg” and the “father of fps”. I cant imagine the face, of a kid born from 2 dildos and lots of problems.
    Is the end of times.

  10. Thanks Bethesda for finally fixing the Master Criminal Achievement Bug even if it is 10 areas instead of 9 as the achievement says. Finally i’ve got my last achievement for skyrim. 🙂 I’ve made every quest i guess and more. I dont had much other bugs (~220 hours playtime) I guess its cause i do not cheat. XD I’ve only used 2 mods (German signs and XXX) I’ve only had a bug with that woman in Solitude which wont take the amulett from the headless man and with some questitems i cant drop or which wont removed after quest finish. Oh and since last update i see sometimes dragons falling dead from sky, atleast i guess its from last update. Not a big bug cause its funny somehow. XD

    Anyway, great game! Now its time for Creation Kit. I will make mods!!! 😀

  11. Gee … if I had the CK that was supposed to come out this month, I could probably mod out the umpteen hundred bugs that this “patch” is not even attempting to fix!

    I’ve been in LOVE with the TES series since Morrowind. It always took me away, but all these bugs has SO killed the immersion for me. Skyrim is NOT fun! It is completely frustrating. I’m hoping w/the CK I can fix as many bugs as possible and then start over. NOT the kind of replayability that I had in mind.

    Normally, I would not be so negative, but as a professional software tester, I cannot HELP but wonder … what kind of testing did you guys do before releasing this game??? It really DOES feel like you guys threw it out here so the players and modders could test it for you. SO disappointing

  12. call me crazy but Bethesda behaves as if it has like eight employees. for real. in terms of like beta testing and time it takes to roll out updates and etc etc. i mean kudos if so those are like the eight richest people of all time. but WTF.

  13. Is there anything in the works about the bug causing combat music to cease playing when your armor rating is too high? says it occurs when armor is very high in the 900s range, but it’s happening to me at 570-700 armor.

  14. I’m very happy with PS3 graphics, please don’t break the resolution on the next update. Some shadows look ugly though, specially the ones inside my Whiterun home. Oh yeah and Ebony Helmet does not display a shadow, it’s like my shadow is missing a head haha.

  15. So, are savegames from 1.4.x beta backwards and forwards compatible or not?
    Backwards: a savegame from 1.4.x beta will work with 1.3.
    Forwards: a savegame from 1.4.x beta will work with 1.5 and other future releases.

  16. Lol you must be waiting to Jan 31st at 11.59 PM to launch the damn mod tools. Otherwise I do not understand -considering today is 28th and no mod tools have been launched- the reason you haven’t launched the tools yet. They are the key for Skyrim to survive years to come.

  17. This isn’t really in response to any particular person but I’ve noticed that there are a few players that moan about the game apparently being released as a ‘beta’ and are annoyed that the game should need patching at all.
    And yet nobody complained (or complains) that Minecraft has seen patch after, patch. No, apparently for Mojang that’s a sign of caring for customers. But for some reason there are players who think Bethesda can not have it that way. Why? 🙁

  18. What? Again. WTH? Prefer the console market!? Again! WTH!?!? Ridiculous? Calm down people!
    January or Feb? 1,2,3,4 more days of waiting for years of joy!!! Calm down!

    PS: Moth +1

    • Lol you’re telling us to calm down yet your choice of wording and grammar shows YOU are the least calm.
      But on topic: it is clear Bethesda prefers the console market; development on 360 first, 360 (timed) exclusive dlc, delayed CK for PC copies, no 64-bit executable, very poor optimisation, no PC-specific UI, low-res and poor quality textures, etc etc etcetera..

      • It might not be that they “prefer” the 360 market it could just be that Microsoft has them bought out, knowing MS I wouldn’t be too surprised by that.

      • Some of your points are rather flawed though.

        1. If you’re gonna publish something on both consoles and pc, it would be silly to develop with the pc in mind. If a game will run on the consoles, it will run on most gamer’s pc’s. If they did it the other way around, they’d be making things difficult for themselves because they’d then have to start scaling everything down for consoles.

        2. I sometimes wonder if I’m the only one that noticed how a while ago microsoft released information regarding their ‘games for windows’ project, and how games needed to be playable with a gamepad in order to get that stamped on the cover. That’s the reason for all the so-called console UI’s that all modern games seem to use nowadays.

        The CK delay and the poor optimization (though Skyrim, out of the box, ran more smoothly and my current pc than Oblivion did..) seem most likely to be the result of Bethesda rushing to get the game released on 11-11-11. I’m not sure how console-love could have any influence on that..

        Anyway, I am a pc gamer who is (also?) not too happy about how console-requirements are keeping games from getting everything out of modern pc’s, who severely dislikes (timed) exclusives of any kind and who can’t wait to get his claws on the CK, but stating assumptions as truth kinda bugs me. ^^

  19. I am encouraged by the fact that so much work is being done, but is there no way to know what is happening on a 24 or even 72 hour basis? Some Are waiting patiently to start a new game Knowing things will flow smoothly. More frequent updates, even vague date references would put our minds at ease.

  20. When are some of the quests going to be fixed? Im specifically talking about a glitch with the Companion’s questline and there is no workaround or way to get it fixed. I have even sent Bethesda a letter about it. I cannot find Aela the Huntress anywhere to give her back her shield. She is not at the guild hall or Bleakwind Basin where she is supposed to be on the map. I’ve been carrying around her shield all this time and I can’t continue any farther. I want to be a badass werewolf!

  21. I hope Bethesda delivers the 1.4 update and the creation kit before the month is out. On the 19th I appreciated the update, but now on the 29th it is getting old.

  22. If I ever take things off the shelves in my houses and place something on them, the objects fly off the shelves on onto the floor whenever the room is reloaded.

  23. If anyone is running Windows XP with a Nvidia card and is getting continual freezes change “Max pre-rendered frames” from 3 to 0 or 1.

    This solved all the freeze, CTD and BSOD problems I’ve been having.

        • Omg The Creation Kit won’t be far behind.
          If you can’t keep a promise dont post about when its going to be released. Instead of making promises you can’t keep why not just not say anything…..

    • Agreed… I knew Bethesda wouldn’t release the CK during the norm of January. I will bet all my money that it will be 31st at 23:59 until it’s released.

  24. “We anticipate the 1.4 update going live next week for all on the PC and being sent to the console manufacturers. The Creation Kit won’t be far behind.”
    Did January get a week longer?

  25. Thanks Bethesda for the new update! I just installed the Beta Patch last night and came across the hitching when the storekeepers sister was leading me out of town to begin the Golden Claw quest with a just created new character. Great to see this update fixes this. Yaaay! 😀

  26. I would really love to be able to play.But for some reason the steam client wont finish the install.Every time i try to log on the site crashes and says i have to update it.Tried that and i still crash and get another update request.Has anyone run into this issue and found a way to resolve it?

  27. Sorry, Gstaff, but something is amiss:

    You are answering to Dingus (10:57 am) and Oroga (10:57 am) on the 30th of January:

    We anticipate the 1.4 update going live next week for all on the PC and being sent to the console manufacturers. The Creation Kit won’t be far behind.

    …and I guess that timestamps are based on US East Cost time, so my Monday is still your Monday (30th of January).

    …then you answer to Dingus (12:06 pm)

    We’re planning to release the final update on PC this week.

    We should take that by “next week” you mean “this week” and this is a typo from the previous update?

  28. Don’t promise the Creation Kit in January (or with launch for that matter!) if you can’t deliver. Empty promises make for angry customers. ><

  29. Hello Gstaff,

    Thank you for this Clarification.

    To be honest, I am a bit disappointed
    with the CK not being released this month.

    But you know, I will remain optimistic about it. Others are expressing their frustrations but I feel that is not a way to talk to anyone who is, regardless of standing, not obligated by any means to put out this great feature. I would rather have good, working content than some kit that was rushed based on anxiety of the community.

    Thank you for your hard work, and keep those updates coming!


  30. How long do we have to wait for the CK? This is getting silly Bethesda. Way to shaft your original fanbase (PC gamers) to favor console gamers.

  31. Whilst I agree that encouragement should be shown for positive moves (allowing folk on Steam to beta test) I wish people would stop with the verbal equivalent of sexual favours whenever someone points out an issue with the game or with the behaviour of the company.

    Do you think Todd Howard will phone you up and arrange a date of you jump in white knighting on this blog? Jeez.

    • Ugh, I’m half-asleep.
      Basically what I mean is stop attacking people who feel cheated or who are expressing frustration. That’s what moderators are for.

  32. I really appreciate you guys releasing a PS3 fix, but please release it. Skyrim is incredible, and incredibly complex, I know, but playing it has become nearly unbearable. Sometimes I can play for an hour, sometimes for 30 seconds before it freezes or the framerate is reduced to 1 fps or less. I have almost 200 hours logged on 1 character, while in law school, so this should tell you how amazing the game is (even though my grades are better off without a fix). I just want it to work.

  33. I for one cannot say enough good things about Bethesda. I am so ready to play with the CK, but I can wait a little while if it means it will be a better tool when it IS finally released. I will play on nothing BUT my PC and I am running the 1.4 beta patch and so far so good. No crashes, no losses. So far I’ve found very few bugs and nothing at all I couldn’t work around (with the exception of still having “Talk to Delvin” (in Markarth) in my quest log even though I’ve already talked to him). I even tried killing him, but guards showed up out of nowhere to haul my sorry butt off to jail and he was still registered as essential so…. oh well, just reload and let him live and go on my merry way. Thanks Bethesda for once again taking over my life with a truly F’ing awesome great game!

  34. I was looking forward to the new construction set but now, not so much. I’m not even sure why, to be honest.

    I played Daggerfall off and on for nearly a decade;
    I played Morrowind off and on for several years;
    I played Oblivion off and on for a couple of years;
    And now Skyrim… I’ve already lost interest in it. I’m not even sure why that is.

    Having said that, Daggerfall didn’t come with a construction set; Morrowind was shipped with it; Oblivion had it as a separate download shortly after the game was shipped; Skyrim’s version is still not released and that makes me question why (or is it because everything must be fully integrated into Steam these days)?

    Whatever the reasoning, it’s really unfortunate that it has taken so long. Interestingly enough, a community-made editor was already created and released for modding Skyrim.

    Ah well. These things happen.

  35. This is a load of crap, I have been the biggest fan of TES series and for the last 3 years me and my friend I have been playing a storyline “I” created with the construction set starting in Morrowind continuing into oblivion all the way through Oblivion and I was planning on continuing my storyline into Skyrim buuuut…its based soley on user created content, without the dev tools my storyline wouldn’t exist and couldn’t be possible and so both my friend and me have been waiting to play Skyrim until the Creation Kit comes out so we can follow our storyline and characters.

    I have been checking on steam and Google like 5 times a day every single day for 3 months now and they promised soon and I thought that meant after a couple weeks and then a month went by and they said “starting in January” and so I thought that meant the first couple weeks of January, boy was I mistaken now its the day before the last and still nothing, I’m really starting to get upset at Bethesda because I really need the creation kit before I even want to play this game and I am sick of waiting.

  36. Okay everyone dont forget that steam the master of all messups and late dates and well everything that makes my computer slower to be honest, is integrating itself into this. the possibility that the very long wait is steams fault is about 80%. steam is the bane of pc, and yet at the same time we need it. i have faith that the team in bethesda is working hard at it. and thankyou for the beta bethesda. sorry for my bad spelling.