Elder Scrolls Skyrim: Now with More Awesome, Dragons Included
As if the teaser trailers weren’t enough to whet your appetite, Bethesda Studio’s Todd Howard talks Skyrim and other Bethesda goings-on in an interview with IGN. Asked of everything from combat system, to NPC interactions, to the nature of some possible DLC, Todd Howard provided a few answers in regards to Skyrim.
Have you ever thought the NPC interactions were ludicrous? I did. Since when did you ever stop, in real life, and stare at somebody for a solid ten minutes a mere inches apart while discussing something potentially life-ending? The answer is never. And if you did, I would assume that we have found a glitch in the Matrix or something like that. Thankfully, Skyrim will no longer have that. “The main change is that dialogue is all done ‘real time,” says Howard. “The game world does not stop, the view doesn’t zoom in, it’s just another type of interaction you can do with the world. We wanted to remove the feeling that you were entering a different ‘mode.’”
Thank God, because I was starting to feel like a couple pixels were going to be staring at my soul if I sat there for another five minutes.
In regards to actual plot, little was asked of and little was revealed. We do know that Bethesda’s aim for Skyrim was to make it a stand-alone installment in the Elder Scrolls series. “We didn’t plan any big buildup to Skyrim,” Howard says, “…we want each game to stand on its own, so time-wise, we’re a good 200 years after Oblivion.” Howard went on to say that references to previous Elder Scrolls games will be included, but it is not essential to have played earlier titles in order to understand Skyrim.
In terms of difficulty level, Howard likened Skyrim to Fallout 3, the blockbuster post-apocolyptica title that taught you everything from swatting giant mole rats with a stick to vaporizing a whole entire military compound. “Skyrim works similarly to Fallout 3,” Howard said. “We want peaks and valleys, where sometimes you’re really challenged, and other times you feel really powerful. The trick is telling a player in a wide open game, without locking stuff off, that ‘this area is too hard for you, come back later.’” Sounds fair enough, especially when you’re at level 5 trying to run away from three Super Muties. I had a hunting rifle, I could’ve taken them down!
Perhaps now you’re wondering just how massive of a game Skyrim will be. Well, says Howard, it’s going to be similar to Oblivion. “…it has about the same amount of geography and content as Oblivion. I say ‘about’ because the scale always changes some… It has a different flow when exploring.”
Finally, think of all the fun you’ll have destroying things (violent little bugger, aren’t I?). Howard revealed that in Skyrim, you’ll get the chance to decide just how you’ll get to play with your opponent, depending on the kind of equipment you have at hand. “…we wanted to slow down the pace a little,” says Howard, “and give the player some more interesting choices in how it played based on what he was using – whether that was a sword and shield, two handed weapon, or he was dual wielding. You can also use the shields to “bash” enemies, which staggers them. The balance comes from creating openings and exploiting them. You can also power attack, by holding down the button. That uses stamina, but does extra damage and staggers also.”
I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to get on the nearest horse, grab a bow and quiver, and go darting off into battle. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is to be released on November 11, 2011 in the U.S.
Read the full interview with Todd Howard here at IGN.