Bethesda Softworks - Todd Howard Interview @IGN

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Todd Howard talked to IGN and discussed why it was now or never for Starfield and how the next Elder Scrolls will have more depth.



In describing what he would change about Skyrim, Howard hinted at the future direction of the series. "There are a number of parts of [Skyrim] where we don't go deep enough, where it's a veneer in terms of its interactivity. [...] When we think about games and what we would want to do going forward, it's okay... whatever that system is... how deep can we make it? The other thing is how AI and NPCs interact with you. That's something I think we still have a long way to go with."

Ultimately, the success of Elder Scrolls Online and the overall health of the franchise gave Bethesda the confidence to focus on Starfield, Howard said. "[E]verything takes longer than we'd like as well, but we want to make sure we get it right. Hopefully Elder Scrolls 6 -- you don't want to say that it's worth that kind of wait -- but it does stand up to the series as it has been in a really big, impactful way when it comes out."

[...]
More information.
 
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Dafela

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ESO just makes me wish BGS games would never be like them. There is no RP depth, no details, no interactions. Well if you like collectibles, forced dailies, very rude pvp and repetitive overaland with a few good stories on the top of that, there is a lot for you, but once that is depleted, there is nothing more. That game was protomed by certain groups some time ago as something better than Skyrim. As one of the best MMOs - I agree with that, there is a lot of responsibility to make it for all kind of players. But for me as RP gamer - it is just another game where you cannot roleplay your character because it is so shallow. Still it was good enough for Skyrim haters to make it as an example of great game. Even for Todd it was good enough, but for me it is just another MMO, which didn't bother to create a fantasy world which would feel real. There is always enough of power groups tearing it apart. And always when you talk about RP everyone will get that speach about dialogues, but I'm talking about mechanics, living world details, houses where to live, farming, breeding dogs, being bard, or religious knight… And all supposingly RP games or MMOs like runescape, are so annoying boring extremes…
Sorry got my depression mood again.
And ugly - some of those RP games are usually so ugly. How can I rp a pixelated character? Sorry, this is a really bad mood.
 
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JDR13

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how the next Elder Scrolls will have more depth

Howard & company are always talking about how the their next game is going to have more depth, and, so far, each game has had less not more.

I'd like to see them return to having more skills. I'm not a big fan of their perks systems especially when they're removing skills and stats in favor of that.
 
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vidder

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Howard & company are always talking about how the their next game is going to have more depth, and, so far, each game has had less not more.

I'd like to see them return to having more skills. I'm not a big fan of their perks systems especially when they're removing skills and stats in favor of that.

Hm depth != skills?
I think he is talking about NPC AI, world interaction and so on. And honestly i would gladly take more of those and get rid of a not often used or mergeable skill. Of course there is a limit to that.
 
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JDR13

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Hm depth != skills?
I think he is talking about NPC AI, world interaction and so on. And honestly i would gladly take more of those and get rid of a not often used or mergeable skill. Of course there is a limit to that.

The things you mention haven't really improved all that much.

I consider mechanics a big part of depth, and that's why I mentioned the diminishing skill system. Since Daggerfall, their games have become more simplistic with each iteration. What's left to remove or merge at this point? Skyrim was already barebones compared to their earlier games.
 
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Redglyph

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Deeper world interaction is good, but they've already got something good. It's not what people will remember most about a game, but how engaging the quests are, and how the choices on the character development and the quests have an influence on the story. And in those departments, I also have the impression they're not going in the right direction.

Fast food instead of fine cuisine, that's how I'd summarize what they do. Not that it's unpleasant of course.
 
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NFLed

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I enjoyed every single-player Elder Scrolls game until one or two dozen hours in and I always found that the writing was not interesting enough. Skyrim was the best from that standpoint but still not quite good enough compared to many other games.

In most cases I would end up "finishing" the game (the main story and most or all of the decent quests) but I have never wanted to replay any of the games and they always left me wanting more of a story-based experience such as Mass Effect, Dragon Age, Assassin's Creed, Deus Ex HR and MD, or many other games.

I enjoyed this interview quite a bit.
 
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rune_74

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I'm always excited to play more Bethesda games. At the very least I get dozens of hours of entertainment. I would love if they went back to the daggerfall amount of skills, but actually have them matter.

I personally really loved the spell making system.
 
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RikusTyr

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Bethesda "now or never", hope it's not too late. They used to make fun and entertaining games.
 
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Ripper

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Certainly boats and ships would be a nice addition.

I'm not too moved by things Todd has to say, though. I just find him a tedious PR man, these days.
 
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rune_74

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Bethesda "now or never", hope it's not too late. They used to make fun and entertaining games.

Please, they still do.

Where do people come up with this?
 
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crpgnut

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Howard & company are always talking about how the their next game is going to have more depth, and, so far, each game has had less not more.

I'd like to see them return to having more skills. I'm not a big fan of their perks systems especially when they're removing skills and stats in favor of that.

While I loved Skyrim, I'd like to see that depth again also. Bring back the advantage/disadvantage system of Daggerfall and also factions that are at odds with one another. Make completing a quest for the fighter's guild have consequences in the thieves or assassin's guild. Perhaps multiple factions wish to acquire the same item, etc.

Bring back the smaller cave-like dungeons of Morrowind. Not every location needs to be a multi-level extravaganza of similarity. Go for small and unique sometimes. TES6 will make billions. Spend millions on art diversity in advance please. Morrowind was great at this.

I'm okay with dropping war as a theme. Bethesda sucks at it, so let it go. I'd love to see TES VI focus on the scrolls themselves. I'd personally like to see the Empire strong and the factions being way more important than the provinces.
 
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rune_74

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Another cool feature that fell victim to Bethesda's streamlining of the series. I guess they thought it was too complex for Skyrim?

I'm betting it is more to do with balancing.
 
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Morrandir

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Make completing a quest for the fighter's guild have consequences in the thieves or assassin's guild.
Yes, that's my main problem with the game. I remember when I, as the Archmage of Winterhold, wanted to join another faction and got a quest to kill rats in a basement (or something like that).
Prime example of why immersion in this game doesn't work. Nothing is linked to each other, but kept separate. Having a game with interlinked quest lines is a lot more complicated (and thus more expensive) to develop. So I don't think we'll see an improvement here from Bethesda unless they totally change their strategy.
 
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vanedor

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You guys almost make me guilty that I enjoyed Fallout 4!

Bethesda games are fun to explore. Find side quests, new locations, new NPCs... For Fallout 4, base building wasn't great but fortunately (unlike in the Pathfinder games) it could be easily ignored. Factions were certainly at odd with each other. Perhaps a bit too much, imo. In the end, I did not even care completing the main story.
 
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