E3 might be a bit quieter this year, with Sony and Electronic Arts opting to skip their annual press conferences, but there should still be plenty to see. Nintendo and Microsoft are still holding their usual conferences, and so is Devolver Digital. The latest publisher to confirm their presence at the big convention in Los Angeles is Bethesda.
Bethesda’s E3 Showcase kicks off on Sunday, June 9th at 5:30 PM Pacific / 8:30 PM Pacific. Bethesda’s 5th annual E3 presentation promises “an in-depth look at DOOM Eternal plus much, much more.” The theme of the show is “Be Together,” and in that spirit, Bethesda plans to invite fans to the show. Official details on how to apply for a chance to attend the show will be revealed soon.
Fallout 76 was arguably one of the most disappointing games of 2018, and Bethesda has been feeling the heat. In addition to the bizarre nylon bag controversy, they’ve been dealing with numerous prominent bugs, negative reviews, and mediocre sales numbers. There have even been reports of game shortages in Australia, despite low sales.
The game’s disastrous launch coupled with alleged shortages spawned rumors that Fallout 76 will soon be ditching its $60 price tag in favor of a free-to-play model. Naturally, this would be an upsetting revelation for people who just bought the game at full price in the last couple of months.
So is there any truth to the rumor? According to Bethesda, the answer is a resounding “No!” The publisher’s official Twitter account responded “There is no truth to this rumor” when confronted by a disgruntled fan. While I wouldn’t be surprised to see an eventual price drop, Bethesda currently has no intentions of removing the price tag altogether.
Merry Christmas, Fallout fans! Bethesda has announced that anyone who logged onto Fallout 76 in 2018 will receive a free copy of the Fallout Classic Collection. The Fallout Classic Collection includes Fallout, Fallout 2, and Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel. The collection will be delivered sometime in early January and is available for all Fallout 76 players, whether they’re on PC, Xbox One, or PlayStation 4.
Fallout was originally released in 1997. While it’s aesthetically similar to the modern Fallout games, the original Fallout was a turn-based RPG with an overhead camera. Fallout achieved critical acclaim and was hailed as one of the best RPGs available for the PC. Fallout 2 came out one year later and also achieved critical acclaim, but it was criticized for its numerous bugs (some things never change). Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel came out in 2001. It forwent the former games’ RPG elements and was instead a strategy game with massively improved combat.
After Fallout 76‘s lackluster reviews, the numerous bugs, and “NylonGate,” it’s hard not to see this as some sort of mea culpa. Giving away the collection for free is a nice way to keep the brand image healthy and keep players interested in Fallout 76 while the team irons out some of the game’s problems. This may not be the best apology, since the collection was originally a pre-order bonus for Fallout 76, but it’s still a nice gesture to fans who have stuck with Bethesda during Fallout 76‘s…fallout.
Fallout 76‘s release has been rocky. Reviews haven’t been kind to the game, saying that it’s underdeveloped, sterile, and far too buggy—even by Bethesda standards. Bethesda has been doing damage control since the game’s release, but one certain mishap got them in a lot of hot water. Those who preordered the special Power Armor Edition were promised, among other things, a special Fallout-themed canvas bag. What they got was a nylon sack.
While the other extras, such as the Power Armor Helmet, came as advertised, the carrying case was specifically stated to be a “canvas West Tek duffel bag.” Naturally, this unannounced change could have been cause for a lawsuit. The Power Armor Edition was almost $200, meaning that its contents should have been worth that price tag. Bethesda stated that, while they had planned to include a canvas bag, they had to switch to nylon due to “unavailability of materials” and “[t]he bag shown in the media was a prototype and was too expensive to make.” Originally, to make up for this, Bethesda offered players 500 Atoms, which is about $5 worth of in-game currency. Naturally, people were upset by this, since sturdy canvas bags aren’t just worth $5 more than nylon sacks.
The public outcry was loud enough that Bethesda has now decided to create replacement bags similar to the ones originally advertised. Those who ordered Fallout 76: Power Armor Edition and received the nylon bag can go to Bethesda Support and submit a ticket to get a replacement bag. Players only have until January 31 to reach out to Bethesda, though, so if you ordered the Power Armor Edition and want your promised canvas bag, act quickly.
I can tell you that I’ve played The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim on many, many consoles over the past seven years, and if you’re like me, you need something new. You need more Elder Scrolls, and there’s no amount of smart fridge ports that will truly satiate that thirst. We got a taste at E3 2018, where Bethesda revealed The Elder Scrolls VI, but they told us to keep in mind that it’s set for a next-generation release. They’ve recently come out to suggest that, in all likelihood, it won’t exactly be a PlayStation 5 launch title, either.
Speaking with Elder Scrolls Online director Matt Firor and marketing head Pete Hines, GameSpot asked about the timeline of new games from the Goliath of a publisher. Firor referenced Starfield, another E3 announcement, and that it will be developed and launched before Elder Scrolls VI. He added that given the timeline of Bethesda Games Studios releases, we may have to wait a couple of years before we see anything major.
Firor was later asked if the world of Elder Scrolls VI would be eventually included in The Elder Scrolls Online, replying, “I don’t even know what the world is going to be like when it comes out; there will be a different console generation by then, I’m sure. Who knows. But I know we’re free and clear for a long time.”
Do you think The Elder Scrolls VI will be worth the wait? What would it even be like on next-generation hardware? Hit the comments below to let us know what you think!
Bethesda is gearing up to launch Fallout 76, an online-only softcore survival game that shakes up the traditional formula of the series to offer something new. Ahead of its launch, Bethesda’s giving players the chance to participate in a “Break-it Early Test Application,” or “B.E.T.A.” that gives you access to the full game. In preparation for this, Bethesda has just released the game’s opening cinematic, and they’ve also outlined when the B.E.T.A. is coming to various platforms.
The game’s intro recaps the events of the catastrophic war that left the world in ruins and shows the dedication and opening of Vault 76. The vault dwellers are then tasked with a special mission: to rebuild not just walls and buildings, but hearts, minds, and ultimately America itself. You can set out on this journey soon, as the B.E.T.A. kicks off next month.
As previously announced, the B.E.T.A. hits Xbox One first before coming to PlayStation 4 and PC a little while later. When it launches, it will only be available during select hours. Here’s Bethesda’s breakdown of how it works:
We’re excited to announce that our B.E.T.A. (Break-It Early Test Application) will arrive first on Xbox One on Tuesday, October 23, and one week later for PlayStation 4 and PC players on Tuesday, October 30.
During the B.E.T.A. one of our primary goals is to stress test and break the game. As such, the servers will not be running 24/7; instead, they’ll be online during targeted timeframes so we can get as many people as possible playing at the same time. Why? Because that’s the best way to put all our systems to the test and see how they respond.
On any given day the game might be up for anywhere between four to eight hours. Focusing as many players as we can into these windows is our prime objective. Then we’ll fix what we need to fix and do it again and again from the start of B.E.T.A. until a few days before launch. We’ll give you as much heads up as possible because we need you to log in during these times and play the game. We’ll also keep you posted through our official @Falloutand @bethesdastudios on Twitter as well as the Bethesda.net forums and our Bethesda.net Status Page to learn when servers will be online.
The B.E.T.A. gives players access to the full game, and your save file will transfer once the game officially launches. Fallout 76 hits store shelves on November 14th.
At E3 2018, Bethesda announced that The Elder Scrolls: Legends would be coming to home consoles in an effort to expand its audience. At the time, the game was confirmed to support cross-play between all systems. But Sony, in particular, has been avoiding cross-play like the plague for some time, so it seemed surprising that a card game from The Elder Scrolls would be one of the titles to support this feature across all platforms.
When speaking to Game Informer on this topic, Pete Hines of Bethesda once again confirmed the game would be cross-platform for all systems. However, the interviewer cut him off to make sure this applied to all consoles, as it had been assumed the PS4 would skip out on this feature. Hines made it a point to express how important this feature is to the game, and that Bethesda would not release it on any platform that will not support cross-play:
“It is our intention in order for the game to come out, it has to be those things on any system. We cannot have a game that works one way across everywhere else except for on this one thing. The way the game works right now on Apple, Google, Steam, and Bethesda.net, it doesn’t matter where you buy your stuff, if you play it on another platform that stuff is there. It doesn’t matter what platform you play on, you play against everyone else who is playing at that moment. There’s no ‘Oh, it’s easier to control, or it has a better framerate on this system.’ It’s a strategy card game. It doesn’t matter.” — Pete Hines
With this new information on the table, the first thought is that Sony either has to change its stance on cross-play, or the game might not release on the system at all. When asked about this, Hines vaguely responded without singling anybody out, but the message was clear.
“We continue to talk to all of our platform partners. But those [terms] are essentially non-negotiable. We can’t be talking about one version of Legends, where you take your progress with you, and another version where you stay within that ecosystem or its walled off from everything else. That is counter to what the game has been about.” — Pete Hines
Hines was then reminded by Game Informer that Sony also declined to support cross-play on the insanely popular Fortnite, to which he simply said that he “was aware.” He again reiterated that while he wasn’t singling anybody out, The Elder Scrolls: Legends has to support this feature to fully realize their intentions with the game.
So it sounds like Sony needs to finally support this highly requested feature in games on their system. While competition is healthy to a certain extent, their current practices are hurting them more in the long run. People are now less likely to play online multiplayer games like Minecraft, Fortnite, and now The Elder Scrolls: Legends on PS4 simply because their friends have a different system. Hopefully, this will be a big enough deal to make Sony realize what they’re missing out on.
What do you guys think? Will this make Sony change their ways? Will they ever join the other companies in supporting cross-play? Let us know what you think in the comments below!
Rebooting a franchise can create a tricky situation when it comes to names. Should you stick with the name of the original, slap “Remake” at the end, or change things up? In the case of the historic demon shooter series Doom, Bethesda and id Software opted with the all-caps “DOOM” to distinguish this new iteration. Its success made a sequel a safe bet, but some fans were surprised by the decision to name it DOOM Eternal.
So what prompted this subtitle for the sequel to the reboot? Speaking with IGN at QuakeCon 2018, Executive Producer Marty Stratton explained. As it turns out, id was somewhat worried about brand confusion after “DOOM 2016” became the popular way to refer to the reboot.
“You hear us say it all the time, we call it Doom 2016, and the internet has called it Doom 2016. We go back and forth on whether it was a mistake to call it Doom. I still don’t think it was a mistake, because we really were kind of drawing a new line in the sand… coming out and saying ‘we’re going to do Doom 2,’ we would have ‘Doom 2: Year of Release Date.'” — Marty Stratton
Creative Director Hugo Martin added that naming it DOOM 2 would create problems with search engines. Instead, the marketing and creative teams had a meeting to deliberate on a name “that had meaning and spoke to what we were doing with lore and how we want people to feel about the game.” In the end, DOOM Eternal was the winner. Martin also compared the naming decision to Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy, as each entry has its own distinct title despite being part of a connected story.
A few days ago Bethesda and id Software gave us our first look at DOOM Eternal. The latest demon-killing adventure features the same adrenaline-fueled action you expect mixed with new enemies, worlds, and game modes. There’s still no release window in sight, but we know it’s launching across all major current gen platforms, including Nintendo Switch.
Switch obviously isn’t packing the same kind of hardware as PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, which means it’ll take a bit of extra effort to bring DOOM Eternal to Nintendo’s hybrid console. Some fans have been wondering if this means they’ll have to wait a little longer for the Switch version of the game, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. Speaking with Eurogamer, executive producer Marty Stratton shed some light on id’s Switch plans.
Eurogamer: Will the game launch on Switch at the same time as PC, PS4 and Xbox One?
Marty Stratton: “That’s the plan right now; we’ll see. We’re still a way away from launching but we have made the decision to make Switch a, what we call internally, ‘first class citizen’.”
Eurogamer: So you’re developing it internally?
Marty Stratton: No. We’re actually working with Panic Button again, but before, we made the game and then we brought it to Switch, and now we are making the game with Switch in mind. It’s nice to know the platforms we want to hit up front.
Eurogamer: Graphically it sounds like you’re doing even more with Eternal but you said it will run at 60 frames per second – on Switch as well?
Marty Stratton: We don’t run at 60 on Switch. Doom 2016 didn’t run at 60 on Switch, it ran at 30, and really it was no sacrifice to the experience.
Eurogamer: But on all the other platforms it will run at 60?
Marty Stratton: Yeah – that’s always the goal. The engine has an interesting way of flexing. It flexes around 60 fps. Sometimes game engines flex around other metrics but for us we try to set the line at always trying to maintain 60.
Panic Button has proven themselves as more than capable when it comes to porting games to Nintendo Switch, and this time around they get to work on it right from the start. There will be some sacrifices (like a lower frame rate) on the portable version of the game, but if all goes to plan, it will launch alongside the other versions on day one.
Fallout 76 is completely unlike any other game in the series, putting a huge emphasis on multiplayer gameplay. There are still a lot of unanswered questions regarding some aspects of how online play will be integrated, and Todd Howard took an opportunity at QuakeCon 2018 to highlight some of the features.
One thing that usually plagues online games is griefing. Sometimes there’s just one player that is there to do nothing other than to ruin your experience for their pleasure or benefit. There are many ways that developers have dealt with griefers in the past, which usually results in a temporary or permanent ban from the server. However, Bethesda is taking a more unique approach to griefers in Fallout 76.
In the game, PVP initiations are referred to as “slaps.” Todd Howard compared the term to slapping somebody in a bar to see if they want to fight back. The same is true in the game. If somebody in Fallout 76 slaps you, there will be an option to engage in battle. If you choose “yes,” a PVP battle will begin. If you choose “no,” gameplay will continue as normal.
However, it is still possible for a player to kill you if you’ve selected “no.” In this instance, the player who ignored your request and took you down will become a “wanted murderer.” The player will receive no rewards for killing the player and will be punished by having a bounty put on their head.
The murderer will then appear on the map as a red star. Any other players that are hunting the bounty will be invisible on the map for the murderer. This makes it to where griefers will receive no rewards and are at a high risk to lose their items to other players.
Howard also revealed some other features of the PVP mode. Higher level players will, of course, give you better prizes for defeating them. You will also be able to seek revenge if you are killed in player combat, giving you a chance to score double the loot if successful on a second try.
Thankfully, there isn’t a whole lot to lose upon death. Instead of losing all of your loot, you’ll only drop the building materials you’ve gathered for your base. Thankfully, there are plenty of places you can store these items near your base, so make sure you’re not holding on to too many things!
But if PVP really just isn’t your thing, Bethesda is also including an option to turn off “slaps” entirely. This will allow you to enjoy the online fun of Fallout 76 without having to worry about other players interfering with your session.
Fallout 76 is coming November 14th to PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. An open beta of the game will be held sometime before then, which will release first on Xbox One.
What do you guys think of the new PVP features in Fallout 76? Do you think Bethesda is dealing with griefers properly? Are you excited to engage in combat with other players? Let us know what you think in the comments below!
Bethesda has been showing the Nintendo Switch a lot of love recently. They have released ports of 2016’s DOOM and 2017’s Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus, and they recently announced that DOOM Eternal would be making its way to the Switch as well. In an interview with Variety, id Software studio director Tom Willits suggested that the studio is “evaluating” a version of the upcoming open-world shooter Rage 2 for Nintendo’s console, but the studio is not sure if the Switch has enough power to handle the game.
When asked about a Switch version of Rage 2, Willits stated:
“We’re looking at the tech on that right now, and we’re still evaluating that. We stream everything, and we’re just looking… because everything is open, everything’s available, so there’s no level loads. We are looking at that now, but we don’t know.” — Tom Willits
So, it seems like id Software is worried that the Switch can’t handle Rage 2‘s massive open world and lack of loading screens. However, it sounds as if that fails to be true then the game could make its way to the Switch sometime in the future.
What do you guys think? Would you like to see Rage 2 come to the Switch? Do you think the Switch can handle it? Sound off in the comments below!
Game developers and publishers have often been opposed to used game sales in the past. Who can remember the introduction of the online pass by many publishers last generation in an attempt to curb the practice? However, Bethesda may have pushed the issue one step further by threatening legal action against a game reseller on Amazon. According to Polygon, Ryan Hupp, the reseller, received a letter from Vorys, Bethesda’s legal firm, demanding that he take down his listing for a new, secondhand copy of The Evil Within 2.
The letter stated that Hupp must take down the listing or Bethesda would take legal action against him arguing that the listing was not from “an authorized reseller,” making the listing “unlawful.” They also argued that there was “false advertising” in the listing due to Hupp’s description of the unopened game as “new.” The letter also included a phone number for recipients of the letter to call, indicating that Hupp is likely not the only one to receive such a notice from the publisher.
Hupp did take down the listing, but he responded to the letter with an argument stating that game resales are protected in the US by the First Sale Doctrine. This law states that customers can resell games (as well as other copyrighted items such as books or DVDs) as long as they are not significantly altered from their original form. However, Bethesda claims that the sale would not be covered under the First Sale Doctrine because it would lack a warranty, making it “materially different from genuine products.” The letter went on to state: “Unless you remove all Bethesda products, from your storefront, stop selling any and all Bethesda products immediately and identify all sources of Bethesda products you are selling, we intend to file a lawsuit against you.” The letter also stated that such a lawsuit would seek “disgorgement of profits, compensatory damages, attorneys’ fees and investigative and other costs.”
Speaking with Eurogamer at QuakeCon, Pete Hines, senior vice president of marketing and communications for Bethesda, offered the publisher’s side of the story. According to Hines, Bethesda’s issue with the listing was that it was described as being “new” on Amazon, and customers (and Bethesda) have no way of knowing if the game is truly new or if it has been played and then shrink-wrapped after-the-fact; he said that it would have been fine if the game had been listed as “used” or “pre-owned.” He later stated:
“We are not trying to stop anybody selling a used game, we would never try and stop anybody from selling a used game. We do have an issue with people representing they are selling a new copy of the game when we have no ability to tell it is actually new, so we aren’t going to allow somebody to say ‘this is new'” — Pete Hines
Personally, I can see where Bethesda is coming from on the issue; for many customers, seeing a game listed as new on Amazon tells them that the game is coming straight from the publisher via official channels, which may not be true. However, Bethesda probably went overboard with their reaction to the listing. Perhaps a request to alter the listing to use the “pre-owned” description would have better.
So, what do you guys think? Do you agree with Bethesda, or do you think that the reseller was in the right? Let us know in the comments below!
Bethesda’s 2016 reboot of the Doom franchise (appropriately titled DOOM) was an instant hit with fans and critics alike, and during E3 we learned that a sequel is in development. The brief E3 teaser showed nothing substantial, but Bethesda promised a big reveal at QuakeCon, and they have delivered! Today Bethesda pulled the curtains back and gave us tons of new gameplay details and footage.
One of the biggest takeaways from today’s event is that DOOM Eternal will not be confined to a single location. Instead, you’ll be able to travel to multiple worlds (including never-before-seen ones) on your demon-slaying adventure. It’s even possible to become a demon yourself in order to invade a friend’s campaign. Here’s a breakdown of some of the new content you can expect in Eternal:
Unleash the overwhelming power of the DOOM Slayer. With updated armor and an arsenal of new and improved equipment, including a shoulder-mounted cannon with flamethrower, extendable blade, and a new dash ability, you’re faster and deadlier than ever. Destroy every demon in your path with an upgraded array of guns and mods, including the Super Shotgun’s new Meat Hook attachment to pull yourself point blank with the faces of hell.
Rip More, Tear More
Obliterate more demons than ever before, each with their own attacks and abilities. Fan-favorite classics such as the Pain Elemental, Archvile, and Arachnotron make their return, while a horde of totally-new demons join the roster including the DOOM Hunter and corrupted Marauders. DOOM Eternal’s “destructible demons” system takes your power fantasy to new levels by ensuring that every trigger pull has never felt better.
As the Slayer, allow real players to invade your campaign as demons for a dramatic and unpredictable twist anytime you’re playing the campaign. Or join the ranks of the damned yourself as you become a demon and invade a friend or other player’s campaign. Invade others either by yourself or with another player, as part of a hunting party, to give the Slayer a true taste of Hell.
We’re Not on Mars Anymore
Rip and tear across epic, never-before-seen worlds. Witness the tumbling skyscrapers of Hell on Earth; battle through an invasion of the mammoth BFG 10,000 on Phobos; and discover the ancient secrets of the DOOM universe. With idTech7, every environment is brought to life in unprecedented detail.
At this point, there is still no official release window for DOOM Eternal. What we do know is that it’s coming to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and yes, Nintendo Switch. It seems the Switch port of DOOM performed well enough to justify Bethesda’s continued support.
The next entry in Bethesda’s beloved Fallout franchises is shaking the formula up. Fallout 76 is an online-only softcore survival game launching this November, but you won’t have to wait that long to try it out. Bethesda has announced a “Break-it Early Test Application,” or B.E.T.A., that kicks off in October. They also recently posted an FAQ page to share more info on the upcoming early version of the game.
Much of the FAQ is fairly standard info, such as how you can sign up for the B.E.T.A. and access it when it becomes available, but there are a few interesting tidbits. In particular, the last question is “Is the B.E.T.A. going to be the full game and will my progress carry over to launch?” As it turns out, the answer to both of these questions is yes! Those who pre-order Fallout 76 will be able to hop into the full experience right away, and Bethesda will incorporate their feedback into the full release.
Additionally, Bethesda recently confirmed that Fallout 76 will not be available on Steam. Company reps have confirmed that the PC version of the game (and the B.E.T.A.) will only be available on Bethesda.net.
At Bethesda’s E3 conference last month, they announced that a sequel for 2016’s Doom titled Doom Eternal was under development. However, we didn’t get much information from the game aside from a title, a brief teaser, and a promise of a gameplay reveal at QuakeCon in August. Recently, Bethesda released their schedule of events for QuakeCon, including information about the event’s keynote address.
QuakeCon’s keynote address will take place on August 10th at 11:00 AM CT, and it will feature updates on Quake Champions, Rage 2, The Elder Scrolls Online. Arguably the biggest announcement of the presentation will come from Marty Stratton and Hugo Martin from id Software, who will be presenting the gameplay reveal of DOOM Eternal at the keynote. The agenda for the weekend also includes a Fallout 76 panel and Q&A on August 11th and other events throughout the weekend.
If you ever think you’re good at video games, nothing shatters that perception like checking out the speedrunning community. These talented and dedicated fans have games down to a science, and events like GDQ showcase just how incredible they are. Outside of these events, speedrunners are always working to perfect their game and set new records, and Fallout runner tomatoanus has just done exactly that.
Rather than besting just one game, tomatoanus has strung five games together: Fallout, Fallout 2, Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas, and Fallout 4. Once you’ve subtracted the loading times (as is the case on the official speedrun records website) you get a completion time for all five games of 1:29:47. You can watch the whole run by clicking above, and if you’re interested in finding out more, you can read a handy FAQ on the runs.
In the weeks leading up to E3 2018, Bethesda unveiled the next entry in the popular Fallout franchise. Fallout 76 is an online-only “softcore survival” game set shortly after the end of the nuclear war that devastated the earth. During their E3 presentation of the game, Bethesda announced a “Break-it Early Test Application,” or B.E.T.A., would be made available before launch, and today we have new details!
Bethesda Community Administrator Jurrasica stopped by the forums to give everyone an update on the upcoming B.E.T.A. today, revealing that it will begin in October. Anyone who pre-orders the game at a participating retailer will eventually be given access to the B.E.T.A., but Bethesda is going to start out small and add more players over time until everyone has access.
Jurrasica also noted that Bethesda will be answering questions from fans during the upcoming Fallout 76 panel at QuakeCon. In the meantime, they’ve also set up an FAQ to answer all of your B.E.T.A. questions.
Have you ever thought that there are just too many darn ports of Skyrim? I know I have, and I bet Bethesda has too. Heck, they made a whole trailer making fun of how many times they’ve released the game. But they immediately went on to make that joke trailer a reality. So are we finally done seeing Skyrim ports every year? Is Bethesda finally going to stop cashing in on their most popular title? It’s hard to say for sure. But if you want the company to stop, you may not want to buy any more copies.
According to the lovely Todd Howard, Skyrim was released on so many different systems because of its sales and popularity. This is fairly obvious, which is why some people are so annoyed that it keeps happening. Many gamers accuse Bethesda of taking the easy way out by cashing in on their most profitable property. As it turns out, that’s exactly what the company is doing. If you want the publisher to stop releasing Skyrim, Todd Howard says you should stop buying it:
“Even now, the amount of people who play Skyrim seven years later — millions of people every month are playing that game. That’s why we keep releasing it. If you want us to stop releasing it, stop buying it.” — Todd Howard
The man certainly doesn’t beat around the bush, and I think we can all appreciate that level of transparency. Honestly, this is why most games are ported to modern systems. They were popular when they released, so companies release them again to make some quick money. This is often thought of as a cheap sales strategy, but it can actually be a really good thing.
Most people don’t consider where their money is going when they buy ports of older games. They don’t cost that much to create and release compared to a new game, so developers usually make a decent profit from them. This money then goes back to the team so they can work on their next project. In Bethesda’s case, the sales gained from the many releases of Skyrim are probably funding The Elder Scrolls VI, which is what everybody has been clamoring for in the first place.
Ports also help new fans gain an appreciation for the franchise, which will inevitably increase sales for the next title in the series. This will also help fans make new friends and have conversations about a game they were unable to play before. The expansion of the gaming community is never a bad thing.
So in the future, if you have an urge to complain about a game being ported, think about why it’s being released again. Usually there is a massive audience for these types of releases. Otherwise, most developers wouldn’t waste their time and energy on them.
Todd Howard talked about many other things with Geoff Keighley at Gamelab 2018. They discuss a wide range of topics, such as E3, Howard’s legacy, The Elder Scrolls: Blades, the release of retro games on modern systems, and much more. You can read the full interview over on VentureBeat.
What do you guys think of the countless ports in today’s gaming culture? Do you think they have more of a positive impact on the community? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!
Skyrim is one of the most popular games of all time, and that’s evident from the way Bethesda has (quite successfully) released it time and time again on new platforms. With a new version of Skyrim seemingly coming out every year, Bethesda decided to play up the joke by making a playable version of the game for Alexa. However, by doing so, they unwittingly ported the game to the most bizarre platform yet: the toilet.
Kohler, a manufacturer best known for their plumbing products, recently launched a fancy smart toilet with more features than any bathroom-goer could possibly need. The Numi toilet also happens to be compatible with Alexa. As such, it’s now possible to play the Alexa version of Skyrim on a $6,000 toilet. Or, you know, you could just use your phone.
Bethesda originally launched Skyrim in 2011, but the mega-popular RPG is still hitting new platforms and making headlines to this day. Bethesda finally brought the world of Skyrim to a Nintendo platform, Switch, last year. It’s a good port, but it lacks a key feature that is central to many players’ experience on other platforms: mods.
Is there any hope for this to change in the future? Eurogamer recently caught up with Todd Howard to discuss the possibility, and he dished out some mixed signals. On one hand, Howard says he would “love” to have mods available for Skyrim on Switch. On the other hand, he says it’s “not something we’re actively doing.” Howard went on to explain that Bethesda’s Switch team has been working on Fallout Shelter, which has surprised him with its quality.
Switch fans shouldn’t expect to have mods available to them anytime soon, but it at least appears to be on Bethesda’s radar. Hopefully Bethesda titles continue to perform well on Switch in the future, prompting them to invest more in developing for the platform.