The Elder Scrolls Skyrim: Special Edition
November 7, 2016
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The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim was released on November 11th, 2011 by Bethesda Softworks. This is the fifth installment of the Elder Scrolls series and is the sequel to The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion. Skyrim is a vast
open world with many adventures and places to explore. Skyrim has managed to maintain its lifespan as a widely played game due to its thriving community and thousands of modifications created by users. On October 28th, 2016, Skyrim got a remastered special edition with new graphics and improved stability. This rejuvenated a community that was starting to get stagnant.
Here is a list of some of the interesting changes:
- 64-bit support
- In-game mod support (Even on console)
- Added Dynamic depth of field
- New shaders for water and snow
- Improved effects and visuals
One of the most important parts of this remaster is the game running on a 64-bit engine on PC. What this means is the ability for the game to run more stable and be able to handle more objects on the screen at once. This is important because Skyrim is home to one of the most popular modding
communities for any video game. The standard version of Skyrim had the tendency to bug out and create instability due to huge amounts of mods players would install. This was mainly occurring due to the games 32-bit engine and thus is not much of a problem thanks to the 64-bit engine. A 64-bit engine helps the game become more stable because it allows the game to access more RAM than before, thus increasing performance.
Another important part of the remaster is the added support for mods (especially on consoles). This is something new for consoles as they don’t have many of the luxuries that PC users have. The only problem is the both the PS4 and the Xbone both have data limitations on how many mods they can have installed on their game. While PC would never have that sort of limitation. This is great for modders as now their mod can reach much more people and more players can enjoy the user created content. If it wasn’t for mods, many people would not be able to enjoy Skyrim or even play it due to how many bugs vanilla Skyrim contains.
While mods on PC are not a new thing, there is now a first-party mod manager that can be used to manage mods downloaded from 3rd party sites or downloaded from the newly added in-game mod browser where you can download mods from the Bethesda website. Another limitation for consoles is that console mods can only be downloaded from the Bethesda website. Although Bethesda’s website contains many mods for the players to download, it is not the preferred hosting site for modders. Most modders favor the Nexus website over other sites that host mods for Skyrim. So thus less of the popular and more well-known mods would carry over to consoles.
Though there are some small things to note about this remaster for Skyrim. No new quests or DLC was added to the game so we have the same story and content that was in the standard version which isn’t necessarily a bad thing with a huge game like Skyrim. But with the same content, we have the same issues that standard Skyrim has as there was little to no fixes in the games huge list of bugs. A minor issue that was actually added to the game because of the remaster was the inability to earn console or steam achievements if mods were installed. Although these issues are present in vanilla Skyrim, mods work together to fix most of them up.