As a number of you have pointed out to me this morning, this is more like it. Answering community questions on The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Bethesda Todd Howard, Bruce Nesmith, and Matt Carofano have addressed a bunch of issues with the PC version of the game, including emphasizing the return of mod tool stuff (which we already knew was happening). Key bits highlighted below.
- "Higher res textures, larger render modes" and "a bunch of other effects". I'd interpret this vague techy talk to mean not just resolution and such but also increased draw distance for things like shadows, characters, and environmental details. That would definitely be a good thing for Skyrim both looking good and taking advantage of increase CPU, memory and GPU power on high end PCs.
- "Power user" stuff relating to keyboard controls. Not quite sure what Howard means by that, but presuming that it's just more keys for stuff that would otherwise have to be locked away in menus and stuff.
- "The whole interface is much less ‘look at giant fonts!’ than, say, Oblivion," says Howard. This can only be a good thing, especially after Alec described the menus as "pure sex". I've always found Bethesda interfaces to be awkward in the extreme (reaching a peak of hideousness in Fallout 3) so anything would be an improvement.
- Mod support. We already knew this, but it's brilliant. Morrowind and Oblivion have both been given fresh life by modders, and it's going to happen again for Skyrim.
- No 64-bit version of the game. Aw, come on now. We all need a reason to get big fat 64-bit systems, now, don't we?
In conclusion: still looking forward to this. Here's a link to John's preview, just in case you missed it.