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Skyrim's Most Ambitious Mod Ever: Beyond Skyrim

Beyond Skyrim is a collection of modding teams attempting the impossible: to recreate nearly every single province in Tamriel. Here is their story.

The size and density of Skyrim was already staggering, but a collective of modding teams is aiming to make it even bigger. "Beyond Skyrim" is more than a single modding project. It’s a cooperative collective of modding teams, each tackling massive chunks of Tamriel landmass. In this in-depth video, we take a closer look at the huge undertaking, its inspirations, and its potential perils and pitfalls.

The ambitious project began before Skyrim was released, when various modding teams were stepping on each others' toes. The proposal was made to approach this next Elder Scrolls game differently, with a spirit of cooperation and sharing resources. Beyond Skyrim is the result, creating a web of various teams working individually on their own areas of the world within some loose guidelines.

In all, Beyond Skyrim hopes to capture seven distinct areas of Tamriel. Each one will have its own visual assets, voice acting, music, sound effects, NPC routines, and more. It’s no wonder that so far the only project to have reached a playable state is Beyond Skyrim Bruma, an area that includes mountainous regions and one major city.

Naturally the modders share concerns about the project being shut down by Bethesda, and its all-volunteer workforce has a significant rate of turnover. The project is likely only to live as long as Skyrim does, so once The Elder Scrolls 6 releases, interest in a Skyrim mod project is likely to fade. For the time being, though, it's a massive and impressive undertaking.