Lessons Learned from Skyrim

Please Stand By

The internet has been abuzz with rumors of a possible Fallout 4 announcement by Bethesda coming up in December. It’s been two years since their last big release (Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim) and over five years since Fallout 3 came out, and fans are eagerly awaiting news of the latest game in the Fallout series.

With all of the excitement over a new Fallout game, I’ve been thinking more and more about Skyrim’s release. There’s a lot to be learned from Skyrim, both good and bad, and I’d like to share some of my thoughts on what lessons I hope that Bethesda has learned from Skyrim, and what we can hope to carry over to the Fallout universe.

Ironing out the Bugs

Skyrim is a beautiful game, but was plagued with bugs at launch. While there weren’t (as far as I recall) any game erasing bugs, there were several instances of storylines (mainly side-quests) being broken by malfunctioning quests shortly after the games release. Whether because an NPC never spawned, or an item never dropped, many of the first people to play through Skyrim were unable to complete some quests, and I can only hope that Bethesda will have learned from Skyrim and that Fallout 4’s release will be much smoother.

It would also be nice to finally see a fix for the various clipping issues that have been afflicting older games like Oblivion and Fallout 3, but then what would a Bethesda game be without objects hovering above tables when you try to pick them up?

A Game Built for PC

At the time of Skyrim’s release it was easy to overlook things like the awkward menus and inventory systems because of how much fun everyone was having, but in retrospect it’s very easy to see that the PC version of Skyrim was held back by its console counterparts. This CANNOT be the case with Fallout 4. The PC version of Fallout 4 will need to be designed from the ground up to support play with a mouse and keyboard. The cumbersome menus in Skyrim were by no means game-breaking, but were completely unnecessary, and if PC gaming is ever going to move forward, we cannot hold them to the same standards of console games.

A Whole New Wasteland

Tamriel has always been a fascinating place, and if Skyrim was any indication, whatever the location of Fallout 4 ends up being, I have no doubt that it will just as fun to wander about aimlessly in as the wastelands the came before it. World building has always been a strong point in Bethesda games and I’m curious to see what locale Fallout 4 will call home. With the iconic Washington DC and Las Vegas already done, where do we turn next? Both Fallout 3 and New Vegas reveled in American culture, which leads me to wonder if the next game in the series will go beyond the borders of the US.

While still technically part of the United States in the Fallout Universe, a post-apocalyptic Canada could make for a neat setting and give Bethesda an excuse to throw a bunch of new snow effects into another game. Also: Robots with Canadian accents and Polar Yao Guai!

We may (or may not) be hearing more about Fallout 4 as soon as early December. It’s been pointed out that Spike’s VGX Award Show may be an ideal place to unveil a new game, while others have decoded a message in Morse code on a possible Fallout 4 teaser website that reads ’11-12-13′ which means we may hear something on the 11th of December. Even if it’s just a teaser trailer, proof that the game actually exists will be enough to get a lot of people excited, and I’m looking forward to the internet’s reaction come the 11th.

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