The game that first teased us three years ago but has since eluded us: The Elder Scrolls VI, here's the little info we do have:
It’s the summer of 2018, June in fact, and you are just minding your own business. Suddenly you get a notification from YouTube – it says: ‘The Elder Scrolls VI: Official Announcement Teaser’. Your heart tenses, the mind races and your smile widens; the time is nigh! 36 seconds of Nordic music scoring a soaring skyline view of a mountain range. Pretty neat! Now three years on and not a peep or a whisper has been heard from TE6, the time was most certainly not nigh. We thought Redfall may have been the answer to end our tense intrigue, but that turned out to be a separate game entirely. A YouTube profile named ‘Monsieur Dupond’ has even been commenting on the video day-by-day in logbook style telling Bethesda their thoughts. They are nearly on day 1000. Fans are even calling for ‘Dupond’s Logbook’ to feature in the new game - at least we wait as a community. Either way, the release of the 10th Anniversary Edition of Skyrim, which you can read about here, inspired us to take a look into The Elder Scrolls VI, so below we try to delve briefly (we are working off scratchings here) into what we know so far!
Where is the game apparently set?
As educated conjecture would have it, the 6th Elder Scrolls game will be set in either High Rock or Hammerfell, the land of the Bretons and Redguards respectively, taking place shortly before the tales of Skyrim. The NPC’s will be talking about how in Skyrim they have straight swords! Straight. Swords! Curse the gods! Players around the world are already devising map layout ideas, imagining the Alik’r desert and the lore regarding the Ansei and Yokudan warriors; people are already deeply invested in this game. Details are nebulous on this front yet we do know a location has been firmly agreed within the back-benches of Bethesda.
Where is the game at now?
The concrete information regarding development progress we do have comes from Todd Howard, the game’s director, who stated a few months back that the game is still very much in the design phase, settling on ideas and such. Sure, that may be a bit disheartening to learn that the game is likely years away still, but at least we know that The Elder Scrolls VI is on the road as it were, only it has many bends to negotiate first. Given what we know about the gaming industry and typical timelines, we might expect TE6 at the very earliest in late 2023 – Bethesda’s Sci-Fi behemoth Starfield seems to be stealing the limelight for now.
A reason for hope
Here we touch on a sanguine point; Starfield and The Elder Scrolls VI are intertwined in development with the latter arriving second, meaning that the lessons learned from Starfield should be inculcated into The Elder Scrolls VI. Practice makes perfect – and perfect is precisely what we want. Both games are being used on analogous versions of the Creation Engine 2, a ‘new tech base’ that is moulded to be donned by the ‘technological suites’ of each game; the best tech from Starfield could find itself integrated into The Elder Scrolls VI, making the game not only of the most anticipated games of the decade(s), but a trailblazer in the mechanics it uses. I can finally get some sleep if I consider it in this light!
The Elder Scrolls VI is said to be a GamePass exclusive at least for the initial stages of its lifespan, but such details are at this time mostly superfluous. Skyrim is still played by hundreds of thousands if not millions even a decade later, and each has their own vision of what TE6 will look like in regard to political context, location and gameplay. Bethesda have announced that they are currently re-thinking and altering their strategy in how this medieval open-world title will tell its story, hinting that the longevity of the game will take precedence over all else. Todd Howard is keen to have a game that is playable ‘for a decade at least, at least.’ This is encouraging for those apprehensive about a similar Fallout 4 to Fallout 76 transition as clearly nothing is hurried here, TE6 knows it has the voluminous and numerous boots of Skyrim to fill but is expressing no rush to do so. To that we would say that patience is a virtue, good things come to wait and any other axiom that could inspire you to remain hopeful – The Elder Scrolls VI, it is coming, but seasons shall pass, wind shall guide and far horizons will have to move closer first.