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December 2nd, 2012, 19:29
That's exactly the thing detractors often miss. TES is about massive size, implicitly emergent play, strongly simulated worlds, and complex, deep history. It's less about strong narrative through characterization (Bioware style), explicitly emergent play (Minecraft), or strong balance of systems (the better combat so many people want).

I do think that Bethsoft tackles a number of goals for each game that expand their scope and ability, but retain focus on what makes a TES game a TES game. So while I've seen narrative, combat systems, and crafting systems improve incrementally, they aren't the guiding maxim: "Live another life, in another world." Things like exquisitely balanced combat mechanics run up against the hugeness. The dev teams try, but always in the confines of TES's MO. As Pete Hines always harps: "We make 'em big, people."
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