Skywind Trailer Shows New Areas, Promises Of More Soon

When I last wrote about Skywind, it was to cover the game’s ‘Slough’ trailer, which showed Morrowind’s Bitter Coast brought to life within the Skyrim engine. In the comments, what followed was an interesting conversation about the etymological root of the word “Slough”, and its geographical uses in the UK and in America.

Anyway, the latest Skywind trailer shows off the West Gash region.

Quiet down, everyone. Class! Quiet dow– Walter, I saw that. See me after school.

Skywind, as the name might have tipped you off, is a mod project which aims to port Morrowind’s world and systems to the more advanced Skyrim engine. There are already plenty of ways to play Bethesda’s most fondly remembered RPG, including the Overhaul mod and early versions of OpenMW, which aims to port Morrowind to an open source, modern and highly moddable new engine, but it’s still exciting to see parts of Morrowind running within the fancy, pretty Skyrim engine.

These kinds of videos have been released regularly for a while now, designed mainly to drum up more contributors to the project and celebrate the work of those helping out so far. It seems to be working, given that most of these engine-porting mod projects tend to collapse but Skywind hasn’t. Unfortunately, there’s nothing for you to play just yet, as an earlier release of the mod was pulled. There’s no word on when that will change, but there is apparently “a HUGE update” coming soon, “so expect to see more regular video uploads.”

44 Comments

  1. Skeletor68 says:

    Is there any possible way that Bethesda could bless these fine folk with some money, or let it go on Steam as some sort of Black Mesa unofficial creation. Could they even take a cut of sales?

    I desperately want a fully revamped Morrowind (visuals and combat only) and would pay money to have it work with all original quest lines etc. in place.

    Edit: on a separate note, where in the cycle are we for another Elder Scrolls game?

    • Garek says:

      So much this.
      I still remember the days of Morroblivion, where Bethesda explicitly didn’t want porting content from one game to another to happen. At least that doesn’t appear to be the case here.

      • Lurid says:

        Well, the problem there was that some of the assets weren’t bethesdas, but sub-contracted. They’d be in a heap of legal issues.

    • BrandeX says:

      No point.

      This is nice, but http://www.OpenMW.org is nicer.

      • thebigJ_A says:

        Forgive my ignorance, but why is that nicer? I can already play vanilla MW, and with mods to make it look far nicer. Why would I want it on a new engine that looks exactly like it did on release eons ago?

        Honest question.

        • Kazashi says:

          Long time listener, first time caller etc.

          OpenMW is nicer not in the visual sense (although one of the project goals is to be mod-compatible with Morrowind, so prettying it up will be possible – in addition to being able to modify the renderer itself), but in the sense that it is an open-source cross-platform reimplementation of the engine. This means that, aside from being able to run it on new versions of Windows and other operating systems, long after Bethesda vanishes into the dust bugs can be fixed, features can be added, and performance can be optimised. That’s the kind of nicer that appeals to me.

    • amateurviking says:

      We’re probably another couple of years out from TES VI: Morrowind was ’02, Oblivion ’06, Skyrim ’11. Probably due a Fallout 4 before. Not a peep out of Bethesda re: what they are working on at the moment sadly.

      TES Online may have upset the cycle somewhat too, although I don’t know how involved Tod Howard and the ‘A’ team in Maryland were in that, if at all.

      • RedViv says:

        Fallout 4 is probably the worst kept secret of triple-A games by now. Beth, everybody knows. Stop pretending!

      • fish99 says:

        Yeah I’m guessing the plan was that Zenimax Online was going to make ESO, but MMOs being such huge projects I wouldn’t be surprised if most people from Bethesda Game Studios got drafted to help finish it. That would explain the long silence from BGS. For purely selfish reasons I wouldn’t mind if ESO just died a quick death.

        The other possibility is they’re doing something with the upgrading/rewriting the engine for next gen and it’s taking a long time. Hopefully by the time we get ES6 we’ll finally have no load zones for interiors and a decent LOD engine.

      • Chuckleluck says:

        If fallout delayed Skyrim by a year, it’s reasonable to think we’ll see TESVI in 2016. Science!

    • Artist says:

      IF Bethesda/ ZeniMax would officially support any mod-project the whole concept of community modding could collapse. They could create an example that clearly shows that modding is actually work. Work that should be paid for. By them. Because mods hugely add to the shelf-value of any game – for free. Big $$$ worth of value.

      As long as modders believe its legal for companies take/accept/ignore their work and benefit from it everything is fine. But that also means they have to keep up the bluff and cant officially support mods. Because that could show that they accept that its actually work – done for them without them paying. A can of worms better to avoid.

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      phuzz says:

      Part of the problem with selling it would be, who on the mod team gets what cut? They might not even be able to track down all the people who contributed, and paying people from all over the world would be an accounting nightmare.
      If you’re not paying the mod team, then it would look pretty rude for Bethesda to take the money themselves, and I suspect that this is at least part of the reason Black Mesa was released for free.

      Still, it would be nice for Bethesda to help them out in other ways, most notably by promising not to shut them down.

    • gi_ty says:

      I too am itching for a new Elder Scrolls fix. However being as spoiled as we are at the moment with good games I am rather glad I don’t have a new one right now. If you are really wanting some new content for Elder Scrolls though I can say I had a fair amount of fun in the ESO beta solo questing. There are some really great locations and some neat lore expansion. I plan to play it through once its a lot cheaper to do so.

  2. Wowbagger says:

    Personally i’m getting a little tired of remake after remake of ‘classic’ games. These people are obviously talented designers/programmers, so maybe they should pool their efforts into creating something new and lovely instead of rehashing old ground.

    • mpk says:

      I can sympathise with that. Back when it was upscaling from the pre-3D days (Doom’s 2.5D for instance), or even Black Mesa’s attempt at reimagining HL1, it was kind of interesting and exciting. Nowadays it seems that there’s as many people remaking old games in new engines as there are new games in old engines – I’m also not a fan of the splurge of 16-bit style games we’re currently on the receiving end of.

      The fact is that having spent umpteen hours traipsing through Morrowind originally, there’s nothing going to tempt me to download this mod, just to do it all again.

      Although! A caveat to that: I do wish there was a way in which we could explore game worlds without the game rules. Having the world of Morrowind recreated and preserved as a historical monument, that we could walk through and observe, without interacting with the environment, would be really interesting to me. I think this would be especially important for defunct MMO games (or even ‘funct’ ones). I’d love to walk through WoW or Warhammer Age of Reckoning’s world and see the little vignettes take place, and watch NPCs go about their day.

      EDIT: Morrowind. Morrowing is a whole nother thing.

      • Wowbagger says:

        I completely agree with your additional points – I spent far too much time in Morrowind already as a spotty teenager and it can live on in my memory from there quite nicely.

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          Earl-Grey says:

          I can’t help admiring this as a museum piece, like a painting of sorts.

          After spending countless hours in Morrowind back in the not-so-distant day the thought of going back fatigues me.
          Like completed work projects, I like seeing my finished product but the thought of doing the work again makes me shudder.

          I appreciate these pretty videos much more than I think I’ll enjoy playing it, is what I’m saying.

          Also, it does look fantastic, all possible credit to the people working on this, bravo.

      • Nanth says:

        Having Morrowind preserved as a monument-space wouldn’t be too difficult: it would be relatively easy to make a mod that disables the player’s ability to interact with the world and set enemy hostility to zero. Or you could go into the game, get a permanent chameleon enchantment, and just wander around unnoticed.

    • meepmeep says:

      I’ve heard there is actually something of a growing scene where programmers develop new games. It’s a bit out there, I know, but seems to have a cult following.

      • RedViv says:

        Yeah, many of the fine mod people of the TES series actually took to some site called “Kick it to start” or something like that. Quite obscure, but it is out there!

    • drewdupe says:

      I don’t think they are making it for you. They are making it for themselves and people who are interested in the project. I personally wish them the best and can’t wait to see what comes of it.

      • Wowbagger says:

        Well obviously – i’m not deriding their efforts, only stating an opinion on these things in general.

    • FriendlyFire says:

      I’ve not looked at Skyrim modding (or TES modding in general), but do bear in mind that very often modding skills are not really transferable to actual game development. In my arguably limited modding experience (I’ve only modded a few games, and only one to the extent that I’d consider myself knowledgeable), most mod teams would be unable to make a game due to the lack of actual programmers. We had plenty of scripters, people who knew how to edit the games’ data formats, and we had modellers and texture artists, but programmers were extremely rare.

  3. rabbit says:

    maybe a question which has already been answered many times – but aside from porting the game world over (woo!) , what about the rest of morrowind’s systems? will the old armour system be brought in? the larger skill tree? old quests?

    • amateurviking says:

      As I understand it, everything bar the roll to hit combat mechanics will be coming over intact as Creation is basically Gamebryo with knobs on.

      I hope so anyway.

  4. Loyal_Viggo says:

    I’d love to visit the West Gash… well, all Gash’s really, but that would take a long time and be very tiring.

  5. Axyl says:

    *snigger*

    West Gash. :D

    I’m 33 years old and that is still funny. :D

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    JiminyJickers says:

    As awesome as this looks and as much as I love Morrowind, I can’t get excited over this. So many times before people have started these projects and never finished them off.

    If this one does eventually bring the entire Morrowind into Skyrim, I will explode with excitement, but I’m not hopeful.

  7. deadly.by.design says:

    All of this makes me wonder what’s happened to Andoran: Prologue. :(

  8. ain says:

    Why would I play Morrowind in the Skyrim engine when I can have the real thing instead?

    • Distec says:

      Well, you don’t have to. There.

    • deadly.by.design says:

      The stat-based “hit them but not really hit them” combat was one of Morrowind’s weak points.

      At the time, I was okay with it. Now? I’m pretty sure it would annoy me.

  9. Keasar says:

    I’m a little sad that Rock Paper Shotgun has yet to mention the sequel to the absolutely brilliant and excellent Oblivion mod Nehrim called Enderal by the modgroup SureAI link to sureai.net

    Nehrim for Oblivion was a marvelous total conversion mod that was set in a whole new world. The gameplay was remade to be more of a classic XP based RPG system, the entire game was voice acted by german actors and I am not kidding when I say that game had some of the coolest dungeons I have seen in a RPG. One story dungeon I went through early in the game took me about 2 hours or so. Massive with such cool art. Highly recommend it for everyone to check out.

    They have so far released a few teasers regarding their mod like two showing their beautiful enviroments: link to youtu.be and link to youtu.be

    Also a teaser for their class system: link to youtu.be

    There are also a lot of gameplay previews but they are all in German so far, still worth to watch cause god this is gorgeous: link to youtube.com

  10. Chuckleluck says:

    IF SKYWIND HAS QUEST MARKERS I WILL BURN VVARDENFELL TO THE GROUND

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      lurkalisk says:

      Oh dear… I never even considered that…

    • Grygus says:

      Couldn’t you simply disable those? I think they were optional.

    • thebigJ_A says:

      So long as they revamped the directions people would give.

      “Go five miles SSE past that one cave of thousands and take the third left… oh did I say left I meant left-ish but not quite all the way left. Now look out for THE daedric ruin I won’t name cuz there’s just the one dontchaknow. The cave of Ashuirbeeniebopupal will be just past it. Or a mile past it. Or was that the cave of Ashuirbonnyguptapal?”

  11. Dorchadas says:

    Ugh, I’m torn. The visuals are much better and even Skyrim’s faffing around with nerf weapons is better than Morrowind’s “run up next to each other and swing until someone falls over,” but the best part of Morrowind is the dialogue and story, and without the ability to include The Less Generic NPC Project, I’m not sure I’d like Skywind better than I do modded Morrowind.

  12. TheBudgetGamer says:

    This is definitely a worthwhile endeavour as many players of the Elder Scrolls games still look back fondly upon Morrowind. Although I believe the game engine for the Elder Scrolls franchise could seriously use an update its nice to see people remaking the Morrowind map and fleshing it out for play in Skyrim.
    Anyway, I run a PC gaming blog @ http://www.thebudgetgamer.ca
    I would appreciate if you guys could check out my articles and let me know what you think. It would be greatly appreciated, thanks.

  13. CPKPreachaKilla187 says:

    I have created a Skywind group on Steam to get more visibility for the project, maybe even new contributors.

    The group was created today, so there isn’t a load of members yet. I am going to reach out to as many people as possible, so be among the first members. link to steamcommunity.com

    (long live Skywind!)
    Thanks, -CPK