Pre-Order Skyrim, Get “Premium Quality Map”

You're looking at The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall, there, biggest and sluttiest of all the Elder Scrolls games

VG24/7 have reported an announcement from Bethesda that pre-order customers of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim will come with a “Premium quality map” (presumably of the game world, rather than Ireland or somewhere). What with the endemic loathing of pre-order bonuses in this industry, I’m guessing that this is going to cause a good deal of conflicted soul-searching, and what makes it even worse is that while Morrowind had one of the greatest paper maps of all time, the paper map that was released for Oblivion was both colourless and useless. What will we be getting with Skyrim? We just don’t know.

EDIT: OK, we do know a bit. VG24/7 just updated their story with a picture of the map, with copies of Skyrim balanced annoyingly on top. Click through the jump to see it. Also, to see how the PC version is at the back. Boo!


  1. brian says:

    I miss the days of getting free cloth maps with Ultima games :(

    • Wizardry says:

      Yeah. Paper maps suck.

    • Diziet Sma says:

      I’ve still got mine. Keep meaning to do something nice with it. I’m a sucker for maps whether fantasy or real.

    • Richard Beer says:

      This does nothing for me. Where’s the bonus horse armour?

    • Tyshalle says:

      Yeah, seriously, I wouldn’t wipe my ass with paper.

    • MrThrope says:

      I still have my Baldur’s Gate 2 cloth map somewhere.

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      Out of interest, does anyone know how cloth maps are made? That is, if I were an indie developer who wanted to order a few hundred, where would I go? It’d be a perfect Kickstarter extra.

      I was searching for that sort of information a while ago in a moment of idle curiosity, and I think I found someone who would do printing on cut pieces of cloth, but wasn’t quite sure it was the right thing. Mostly wondering how much it costs.

    • Text_Fish says:

      TillEulenspiegel, there must be a company that print teatowels to spec. Wouldn’t have thought that would break the bank.

    • something says:

      link to
      not only has what you want but also features a disturbing, mentally ill woman in a purple unitard as their mascot.

    • dhex says:

      regarding diy cloth maps: anyone who can do tea towels could do a fairly decent cloth map. the last time i priced something like that (not related to game maps, sadly) it was in the $9 USD per unit range for a single lot of 1,500 pieces. so doing 100 or so would be significantly more expensive per unit.

    • Betamax says:

      According to Bethesda’s blog the map will be made of “high-grade material that has a feel similar to burlap” with the paper map being restricted to those who don’t pre-order. Fair enough I say!

      link to

    • BloodPukeSalvation says:

      @TillEulenspiegel: i have no idea… but my first thought is to contact whoever it is that makes cloth napkins, etc for restaurants? i cant recall eating anywhere fancy enough to have anything beyond a solid colored cloth napkin but i’m assuming there are places out there with custom printed cloth napkins.

      you could also contact a tshirt company to see if they would do a custom order like that. perhapse you can acquire the material and give it to them to do the screen printing.

    • florble says:

      Hey ‘something’

      Thanks for mentioning our site for a good place to get tea towels printed up. The Clever Baggers Ltd Can indeed print tea towels with designs on them like maps. The best part is that we can print just one if you like or even millions if you really like maps! We can print full colour photographic quality prints onto a range of textiles available from our site. Just find the tea towel or whatever you want printed on the shop, click the requjest a quote button and somone will get back to you very quickly with a link to purchase online…. Put ” rockpapershotgun ” in the discount code box at the end of checkout to get 5% Off… :-)

      Thanks again!
      The Clever Baggers & Dotty AKA mentally ill woman in a purple unitard

    • UK_John says:

      I have just been contacted by my UK web retailer saying that while the 360 and PS3 pre-orders will get burlap maps, the PC version will not. I had ordered the PC version from the, and of course, cancelled my order!

  2. JFS says:

    Will there be soul-searching? I thought pre-ordering Skyrim was pretty much a given for just about every gamer that’s remotely interested?
    Oh, and by the way: I like Ireland’s geography.

    EDIT: Okay, now if there’s GFWL the situation is not so clear anymore.

    • jon_hill987 says:

      Is it Games for Windows LIVE or is it just Games for Windows? With the last word covered up it could still use Steamworks like New Vegas.

    • lonewolf80 says:

      There’s no LIVE logo yet, so until I see that…it’s just GFW… which might mean the game isn’t using GFWL.

    • JFS says:

      Pah! Mr Smith edited the post. It wasn’t my invention that there was the dreaded “Live” at the end. But you are of course right, there is still hope.

    • UnravThreads says:

      That’s Games for Windows. If it was using Live, you’d be seeing an orange border AND the word ‘Live’ where the ‘For Windows’ is.

    • JFS says:

      Yes, I know. We all do by now. It’s all Smithen’s fault for getting out “GFWL!” in the first place.

    • simonh says:

      I’ve got no problem with giving out-of-game collectibles to preorderers, it’s the in-game items, particularily in MP games, that annoy me. Also, additional in-game items in SP-games just feel incredibly manipulative and weird, but not really unfair.

    • Bureaucrat says:

      Eh. I’m remotely interested, but not pre-ordering. Elder Scrolls games generally need a good 6 months of modder effort to make them worthwhile, and if you’re waiting that long, you might as well wait for the inevitable GotY version and/or Steam sale.

  3. Duffin says:

    Well I KNOW I’m gonna end up getting it even if reviews are only lukewarm… so I may aswell just cave in and get the pretties right?

    • Nick says:

      The majority of reviews will be nothing but arselicking praise, carefully failing to point out any flaws. 9/10 10/10 best game evar.

      (don’t get me wrong, I’m really looking forward to it, but honestly..)

    • Robert says:

      But to be fair, that’s my reaction as well.

      I get it, start it up, go “OMG< THIS IS AWESOM" and call my friends to tell it's awesome. Then after a couple of hours I get bored and put it in the closet. As this is what happened with the last 3 Elder Scrolls games. I spend more time making characters then playing them.

    • noodlecake says:

      Well of course they get “asslicking” reviews if you call giving any top quality game 9/10 ass licking. Oblivion had lots of flaws but it was really pretty ambitious and also successful in lots of ways too. I had at least 100 hours fun with it. Skyrim looks like it’s going to be much better. So I expect the reviews will be good. :)

  4. Rinox says:

    That Daggerfall map brings back memories.

    • Daryl says:

      I thought that was the map for Arena? I could be wrong as I haven’t played either game in who knows how long though.

    • Unaco says:

      It is the map from Daggerfall. Mistaking it for the map from Arena is easily done, however, as they are very, very similar to each other. Here’s the Arena map to compare…

      link to

    • Tergiver says:

      I suddenly have a strong desire to play Arena again.

  5. Oneironaut says:

    I’m pretty sure that’s the games for windows logo, not live. I haven’t bought a retail game in ages, but going by this picture, the word live would be visible even in the section of the box that is shown.

    link to

  6. Octaeder says:

    Well, we can only see the Games for Windows logo and not the Live suffix that suggests bad times ahead. The Brink boxed copy (which I had to get, because it’s still purchasable on Steam in UK) had the same thing but was Steamworks not Live.

    I assumed after New Vegas went Steamworks, Bethesda had seen sense and dropped Live entirely.

    Edit: Damn, ninja’d by Oneironaut

  7. Teddy Leach says:

    No, that’s not a GFWL logo, just the Games for Windows logo, which plenty of games have without having GFWL.

  8. Abundant_Suede says:

    This is actually the sort of pre order bonus I support, as it doesn’t involve cutting up and parceling out actual in-game content to try and contrive some sort of value for pre-orders at the expense of the game experience. I’m perfectly fine with pre-order and collectors editions being graced with nice, but non-gameplay relevant, physical tokens of the game. It’s only when players are forced to play different versions of the game depending on where/when they bought it, that I take issue.

    Of course, it remains to be seen whether they’ll be doing that as well.

    • jon_hill987 says:

      They no doubt still will. Get Sword X exclusively at Best Buy! Get Magic Spell Y only at Gamestop! Live anywhere else in the world? No bonuses for you!

    • Bhazor says:

      Yeah but the mod community will pump out clones of these extras just to spite them.

    • 200proof says:


      at least in this game you could make those items if you wanted, via mages guild

    • simonh says:

      In most SP-games, like New Vegas and Dragon Age, the pre-order and store-bonuses are usually very easy to find online and install anyway.

    • Vinraith says:

      Honestly though, usually preorder bonus items are game-breaking, overpowered crap anyway.

    • Abundant_Suede says:


      Entire Games are easy to find online and install. Doesn’t mean that’s how most consumers want to conduct business with these publishers.

    • Starky says:

      Abundant_Suede you missed his point…

      All those pre-order items are available LEGALLY and legitimately from the modding community. It isn’t in any way piracy.

      They (the item makers) just make an item using the same model (which is part of the modding tools and allowed), with the same stats and name it slightly differently.

      So that “Sword of Smiting” becomes the “Sword of Foe Smiting” – which is a perfectly legitimate thing to do given you can’t copyright facts, statistics, or game rules/mechanics.

    • Abundant_Suede says:

      If that was his point, I did indeed miss it. Usually , when one refers vaguely to “finding something online”, it has a different connotation. Unlike the poster before him who specifically referred to the mod community on the same subject. I assumed since he was posting after that statement, he was referring to something different, and not just repeating the same thing someone else had just said.

      Regardless, I dislike the practice, and these pre-order or dlc incentives are not *always* easily modded or recreated in a toolset, assuming there is a toolset. Beyond, that, it’s simply the principle.

  9. mjig says:

    I hate in-game preorder bonuses.

    I don’t mind feelies for preorders or collector’s editions.

    • Octaeder says:

      Yeah, physical items for pre-order / collectors editions are alright. After all, it doesn’t have an impact on the actual game. I’m still quite enamoured of my Anno 1404 special edition, which came complete with a compass and bloody almond seeds.

  10. pipman3000 says:

    i don’t care unless the pre-order box contains INFINITE DRAGONS

    • LionsPhil says:

      I, too, would gladly pre-order for the power to destroy the Universe.

  11. povu says:

    Looks like the same boring brown map that came with Oblivion (Which came with the normal copies of the game, too!) instead of the awesome colourful detailed Morrowind one: link to
    Extra high resolution: link to

    • Schadenfreude says:

      What I loved about that Morrowind map is that all of those little Xs did in fact mark the spot (or a spot).

    • John P says:

      Man, just looking at that map brings back the wonder of Morrowind. The exploration, the danger, the atmosphere. The things Oblivion totally missed. I hope they can bring it back with Skyrim, but somehow I expect the user-friendliness of big budget modern games will destroy that hope. Instant fast travel to anywhere, level scaling, and right-this-way-sir map markers are awful, awful things in a game of this kind.

    • JFS says:

      I am more than a little enticed to whip out Morrowind again just because I looked at the map. Ah, the olden days. And I didn’t even have that map, it didn’t come with my DVD-case GOTY edition of Morrowind, and yet it still revives fond memories.

    • sasayan says:

      I used the paper map constantly as it was often more informative than the ingame map.

  12. Theoban says:

    I’m still looking for my damnable Morrowind map that I had on my wall for years before I moved country. I’m sure I have it somewhere. I want to stick it up on my bedroom wall to finally ward off any chances at sleeping with a Lady.

    • Ian says:

      Or attract one who likes maps!

    • Starky says:

      I think there is a higher than even chance that any lady you found that liked maps, would probably like ladies too.

    • Thants says:

      Wait, lesbians like maps? Is that a thing now?

  13. Schadenfreude says:

    I hope it’s useful like the Morrowind map, but they’ve most likely just stuck with Oblivion’s ‘helpful’ compass markers. Took all the fun out of orienteering that did :(

  14. TuesdayExpress says:

    My favorite Bethesda map is still the one that came with my copy of Redguard. Some (all?) preorders came with a fantastic rolled map on heavy yellowed paper that had then been lovingly charred along the edges by the dev team playing with zippos. Gave it a found-treasure-map feel. It was an endearing touch.

  15. Jumwa says:

    That’s a better kind of pre-order deal. I hope they don’t sully the Elder Scrolls with the kind of nonsense that seems to be growing more popular these days; i.e. in game benefits particular to where you ordered it from.

    • Antsy says:

      *cough* horse armour *cough*
      I agree with you though. I find pre-order bonuses to be more deterrent than incentive. Especially when split amongst various stores.

    • Jumwa says:

      That should’ve been a free download like their DLCs for Morrowind.

      To be fair though, at least Bethesda learned their lesson and gave up on that kind of minor DLCs. I can’t help but notice other certain companies are still putting out singular pieces of armour or gear and charging for them as separate DLCs these days STILL. I noticed, most recently, that Fable 3 had a set of armour and a dog costume as individual DLC packs for instance.

    • Antsy says:

      It’s funny you mention Fable 3 actually. I nearly bought it the other day on steam while looking for something to play and when I saw all that DLC it was no longer an option. I’ll just wait a year or two for the inevitable GOTY edition.

    • Jumwa says:

      I desperately want to play some Fable 3 in co-op with my significant other, but the saddling of Games for Windows Live upon it is a huge turnoff, and the silly sale of minor little DLCs is a minor one to add to the reasons why I’ll just wait for it to go on sale for $5 at some point.

  16. Heliosicle says:

    Its a bit like a family photo, PS3 is the child so it goes at the front, 360 is as tall as Dad but he’s younger so he goes in front of him, and Papa PC stands at the back resenting his children.

    • Abundant_Suede says:

      Actually, theres a kind of balance to that arrangement, in marketing sense. PS3 gets front to back priority, The PC version gets “left to right” priority (which, because of the way we read, we tend to view as “first”), and the 360 takes “center stage” in either arrangement, flanked by the others.

      It’s kind of elegant. Depending on the way you look at it, you could read the arrangement as favoring all 3.

    • Justin Leego says:

      PS3 priority means that this is an image for the EU masses.

    • Jimmeh says:

      I laugh and spill my drink!

  17. mbp says:

    As a point of historical accuracy I think we should clarify that while Morrowind did indeed come in a lovely box with an exquisite paper map, the in-game map was crap. This sorry state of affairs was compounded by the complete and utter inability of any resident of the place to give the most basic of travel instructions.

  18. Foosnark says:

    This is one of those things where, when cleaning up or moving, you think “I can’t throw this away” and shove it in a box to be ignored for the next 8 years, at which point you think “I have no feelings for that game anymore” and throw it away.

    • Fwiffo says:

      Ding ding! And this is why I don’t buy limited editions or even boxed copies anymore.

  19. Out Reach says:

    Oblivion had a free map :\

  20. Ridnarhtim says:

    I can see Games for Windows – I am praying there is no Live on the right side of that box.

  21. SexualHarassmentPanda says:

    Cloth map or GTFO

  22. povu says:

    Extra info they posted:

    Early copies of the game (worldwide) will feature the premium map — it’s a burlap paper and a much nicer quality than the map included with Oblivion. If you don’t pre-order, there’s a chance your copy of the game will include a map that’s more akin to what was included with Oblivion.

  23. Betamax says:

    link to

    Link to the blog that confirms a burlap high quality map for the pre-order bonus, with the more typical paper map being included with normal copies of the game.

    Love free maps, including the Oblivion one (although Morrowind’s was better in a lot of ways). Really all games with a huge new place to explore should include a map (would love to see a Galaxy map included with ME3 for instance).

  24. ericks says:

    It looks like a printout of the ingame map, like it was for Oblivion.

    I’ll pass, it would just make me miss Morrowind’s map even more.

  25. MythArcana says:

    I think that says it all right there. In every game ad, commercial, or banner these days; the PC is ALWAYS last. When they start putting PC first, give me a call.

  26. Juuuhan says:

    Well, not that I don’t enjoy maps, (In fact I quite enjoy to get them with games) but I find this to be little redundant.

    If this is a try to get people to buy the game, surely they could throw something better than a quality map, since people who already pre-ordered it won’t care too much if they get a good quality map aswell and people who still haven’t decided won’t make their decision based on a map alone.

  27. mollemannen says:

    no dragons? man i thought you were gonna get dragons :/

  28. Grayvern says:

    Doesn’t Bethesda get more money from steam/ digital purchases than retail though, so surely this actually negatively affects their revenue, I want a cloth map but I’d rather that Bethesda ended up getting more of my monies.

  29. MadMatty says:

    Ultima 5 or 6 had an actual cloth map which beats Oblivions by quite some measure….also Elite 2 had a huge 1,2 x 1,2 meter (or close) map of the closer regions of the galaxy (the ingame map wouldve been over 140 x 140 meteres in print)