Tuesday, 21 June 2016 00:00

Skyrim Remaster Free for PC Owners?

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I have lost many hours to Skyrim.

I think my experience is fairly typical in that I rapidly ran off in a random direction the moment I had freedom. I achieved tenure in a mage college, became king of the vampires, took over a thieves’ guild, and been declared the champion of about five deities for various services. Skyrim is an Olympic sized wading pool, with a massive amount of content and just enough depth to play around in. I regularly go back to wander and play around in the expansive world, so I was pretty interested to hear that Bethesda is releasing a special edition version with updated graphics in October of 2016. The remastered graphics are beautiful, with much better lighting and foliage.

Packaged with the special edition will be all of the DLC ever released for Skyrim. Dawnguard and Dragonborn both added some very solid new content to run through, although Hearthfire was not my cup of tea. Console buyers will get the full Skyrim experience, including mod support. Though PCs will probably still have the most robust modding community, the next gen console release of Skyrim is going to be fully moddable, which has always been a huge draw for Skyrim.

I’ve read a good bit of complaining about this release.

A lot of people think it’s unneeded, or that it will divert resources that could go into Elder Scrolls 6 or ESO. Many argue that if they are going to remake a game, they should obviously remaster Morrowind, or Daggerfall, or whatever their personal favorite Elder Scrolls game was. Personally, I think that any remakes they make would be met with a similar reaction, and they can’t really please everyone.

The PC Gaming master race is getting quite a gift, as anyone who owns Skyrim and all of its DLC for the PC will be getting the remaster for free.

Personally I’m planning on dropping five dollars on Hearthfire since I already own Dragonborn and Dawnguard, so they have managed to get more of my money by offering me something pretty several months from now. There doesn’t appear to be any new content coming out with the remaster, but they claim that Skyrim Special Edition is very mod friendly, with most mods at least easily converted. Add on top that saves will transfer, and this seems to be a massive gift for all the fans of Skyrim. A huge number of people were worried about the release being a blatant cash grab, but if this doesn’t put that theory to rest I don’t know what will.

The feeling I get here is that Bethesda is really trying to do something while being unpleasant to as few people as possible.They are giving something really nice to PC players for free if they have already invested heavily, and opening up consoles to one of the biggest draws for Skyrim. Console players got the short end of the stick, but they are also getting the choice to play in an updated and fully moddable version of a very expansive world; if they don’t want to pay, they are missing a prettied up version of the game; the original game isn’t going anywhere. This release could be very easily ignored, but for anyone still playing, the bump in graphical quality will be welcome.

If the intent of this release is to bring attention back to a game that has been out for years, it worked for me. I haven’t thought about Skyrim in a while and now I’m really looking forward to October. Maybe someday I’ll even go talk to the Greybeards and find out what is up with this dragonborn condition I have. I should probably get that looked at.

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