Bethesda Commits To Single-Player, But "Be Patient" For Elder Scrolls 6, Bosses Say

"Everyone should be very patient."

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Bethesda usually plays its cards close to the vest, but it outlined some long-term plans at E3 2018 by announcing both the long-rumored Starfield and The Elder Scrolls 6. With both games on the horizon, producer Todd Howard and marketing boss Pete Hines are committing their studios to single-player experiences, but again urging patience in the same breath.

"We've been talking about it for a decade, we started putting things on paper five, six years ago, and active development was from when we finished Fallout 4, so two and a half, three years," Howard told The Guardian. "Everyone should be very patient [for Starfield and Elder Scrolls 6]. It's gonna take a while for what we have in mind to come out."

The more immediate release will be Fallout 76, which is an always-online multiplayer game. That said, single-player games aren't going anywhere in Bethesda's company culture. "Single-player is still a thing; it might continue to grow or evolve, but it's part of who we are, and we still think there's room to be successful," Hines said. "That doesn't mean that we should keep doing things the way we did five or 10 years ago--we've got to continue to change how we approach it."

Howard added that he understands players concerns that single-player games are becoming less prominent, and says it would be his concern as well.

"Games have gotten so big and interesting that they've moved beyond the toy/entertainment space," he said. "It's not just a diversion from their regular lives; for a lot of people it becomes an important part of their lives. I think we see that across a lot of games now, where people are getting joy and personal pride out of the time they spend in them ... Games are unique in that. They can put you in a place; they transport you. That's why we've always done big, open-world stuff: it's what a game does really well. We like technology, we like storytelling, we like art. But saying, 'Hey, look what we made the game do'--that is, on a day-to-day basis, on a week-to-week basis, the most rewarding."

All that means the company's long-term plans are pretty well set, which echoes what we've heard before. In June, Howard told us that he already knows the release date for Elder Scrolls 6, but that it would be "foolish" to say it now.

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