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Skyrim To Receive Strong Mod Support

This man is actually chasing the dragon

Following a couple of not so great patches, Bethesda have cheered me up immeasurably this morning by sending word that in January they will be releasing the Skyrim Creation Kit.

PC players will be able to download for free the same development tools we used at Bethesda Game Studios to create Skyrim.

That would be enough to make me punch the air quietly in triumph but it’s not all. The tools will tie in to the Steam Workshop, allowing for easy upload, collection and browsing of mods. When I read that bit I did a small celebratory dance. Mid-way through I stopped though, convinced that this was a cynical move to control modding by making it exclusive to a specific platform.

Prefer to use existing modding sites? Not a problem. You’ll still be able to upload/share/access Skyrim mods on fan-created mod sites.

Dancing again. Full details below.

I’m just going to dump all the text further down. Want a summary instead?

1) Creation Kit in January.

2) Steam Workshop integration for mods, including the ability to queue up desired files from any web device for automatic download at your next play session.

3) Incremental update next week to fix problems from 1.2, including magic resistance.

4) Regular updates, concentrating on code fixes first of all but moving on to quest and balance issues by January.

Now, here are words that I caught as they fell from a horse’s mouth.

Please do not completely eliminate such sights

Creation Kit — Beginning in January, PC players will be able to download for free the same development tools we used at Bethesda Game Studios to create Skyrim. In tandem with the Creation Kit’s release, we will roll out a new Wiki and videos to help you get started. It also features something we think you’re going to love…

Steam Workshop – We’re excited to share news that we’ve been working closely with Valve to integrate Steam Workshop into the Creation Kit. Using the Workshop, you’ll have free user content with the push of a button. The Creation Kit will bundle your mod and upload it to the Workshop, where everyone can browse, rate, and flag mods for download. You’ll be able to do this from any web device, including your smartphone. Like a live Netflix queue, when you fire up Skyrim, mods you flagged will be automatically downloaded and installed. Everyone here is really excited about the opportunities and possibilities this opens up for our entire community.

Prefer to use existing modding sites? Not a problem. You’ll still be able to upload/share/access Skyrim mods on fan-created mod sites.

Continued Game Updates – This week we released update 1.2 across all platforms, and we’ll be releasing an incremental update next week. We anticipate it will be up on PC first, and then hit PS3 and Xbox 360 later in the week. Among other things, the update will fix issues like magic resistance not calculating properly and the rare, amazing backwards flying dragon. Once the update is released, we’ll share the full release notes.

After the holidays, we’ll continue to release regular updates for the game — through full title updates, as well as incremental “gameplay updates” to fix whatever issues come up along with rebalancing portions of the game for difficulty or exploits. We plan on having a lot of these, not just a few. Overall, you should expect updates to be hitting the PC and Steam earlier and more often, as that’s a process we control. Console updates will follow, as they must be certified and processed by those manufacturers.

We all know this is a huge game, and everyone has a different experience. We’ll continue to do everything we can to make the game better and better for as many people as possible every day. We’ve also realized that with the millions upon millions of people playing Skyrim, we need to treat our updates with greater care. If we get too aggressive trying to fix a minor issue, we run a risk of breaking something larger in a game like this. To be safe, we are prioritizing code side fixes right now over data fixes. Quest and balance issues are usually data, and those will start rolling in a large way with the January updates.

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