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How Fallout 4 Will Be Better Because of Skyrim's Technical Issues

Bethesda has learned from Skyrim's bugs and is making Fallout 4 better as a result.


The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim launched in 2011 to critical acclaim, but players sometimes encountered bugs during their playthroughs. Developer Bethesda had trouble working with the PlayStation 3, specifically, having to deal with issues in the game that delayed DLC for the PS3 version for months. Bethesda has learned from the rough state of Skyrim, however, and is aiming to apply those lessons to the upcoming release of Fallout 4.

According to a Game Informer interview with game director Todd Howard, the studio better understood how to deal with bugs and problems following the release of Skyrim and its subsequent DLC. Specifically, it learned what to prioritize for the launch of Fallout 4, should that game face similar issues. "I think we've gotten way better there," he said. "For us, [the player's] saved game is the number one thing. If the game crashes that's bad, but it is nowhere near as bad as someone's saved game being hosed. That's our scenario that we will do anything and everything to avoid. We made a lot of progress given how Skyrim went, but we did it during Skyrim. This just builds on that."

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It was a while before the developer had really formed a method for addressing those issues. "It probably took us a month or two before we really had a handle on it," Howard explained. "All of the updates we did on Skyrim, and all of the DLC--once we sorted [the bugs out] we had a different process for how we checked the content out."

Bethesda isn't known for smooth launches of its games. Fallout 3, for example, had a number of visual bugs on PS3, and The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion was noted for technical issues in GameSpot's review.

Fallout 4 will be released on November 10 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. If you preorder Fallout 4 on the Xbox One digitally through the Xbox Store, you'll get a code for Fallout 3 on Xbox 360 in 7-10 days. Later this year, Fallout 3 will be playable on the Xbox One via the console's upcoming backwards compatibility functionality.

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