Todd Howard has come forward after “The Elder Scrolls 6” was a no-show at the Xbox and Bethesda Showcase this past weekend, confirming some of the fans’ worst worries about the game’s current state of production. “The Elder Scrolls 6” was first revealed in 2018 with a teaser trailer that displayed a basic title on a mountainous setting. There have been more “Elder Scrolls 6” leaks since then, including information on the game’s claimed geography and political structures, but no new official material has emerged.
Instead, Bethesda Softworks has devoted a significant amount of time and resources to Starfield, the studio’s highly anticipated space adventure that has been compared to Fallout or Skyrim in space. Starfield was announced in the same year as “Elder Scrolls 6” and in a similar manner. The Bethesda logo and scary pictures of space were all it took to get fans interested in exploring the universe with the tried-and-true Bethesda gameplay model. This past weekend, Starfield finally released gameplay footage, but many “Elder Scrolls 6” fans were left disappointed.
Unfortunately, according to Bethesda’s Todd Howard, who recently spoke with IGN, the long wait for “The Elder Scrolls 6” could be even longer than previously thought. Howard revealed that “The Elder Scrolls 6”, which was placed on hold to focus on Starfield, is still in pre-production four years after it was first announced in an interview that also confirmed the existence of Fallout 5.
Howard assured fans that he feels their pain, saying, “I wish [games] came out faster, I really do…” The unfortunate reality is that AAA video games—especially with advancing technology and graphical complexity—require a long development cycle, a fact further touched on by Howard. “They do take a while… we’re trying as hard as we can, but we want them to be as best as they can be for everybody,” Howard said.
Because Starfield has been pushed back from 2022 to 2023, it will have been in development for more than seven years and out of pre-production for more than five. Given that “The Elder Scrolls 6” is still in pre-production and won’t receive any additional attention until after Starfield is released, it’s feasible that Skyrim fans won’t get their sequel until the late 2020s. It’s difficult to blame fans of “The Elder Scrolls” for being disappointed, if not outright distraught, by this news, given that Skyrim was released over a decade ago and “The Elder Scrolls 6” was announced about half a decade ago.
While the latest news on the development of TES 6 is depressing, Howard has already compared Skyrim to Starfield, so while a return to Nirn and Tamriel may seem far away, there will be 1,000 worlds to explore in Starfield while you wait. Hopefully, the wait for Elder Scrolls 6 will not be as excruciating as it appears to be right now. Perhaps the extended pre-production for “The Elder Scrolls 6” will result in a tale that is even more detailed and fascinating than its predecessors.