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Five Improvements The Elder Scrolls V Could Do With

According to Eurogamer Denmark, an inside source has confirmed the development of a new Elder Scrolls. It’s nothing more than a rumour, but it’s not beyond the realms of imagination that Bethesda is currently at work on another entry into its longest-running series. As such, we suggest five improvements that need to be made should a new Elder Scrolls hit our consoles some time in the future.

1. Varied NPC Voice Acting
We’re pretty certain there are only five different voice actors in Oblivion. There are probably more, but it didn’t feel like it. Each race had two voices; one male, one female, and after a while they became a little over-familiar. Although there were less NPCs in Fallout 3 (there had been a nuclear war, after all) Bethesda still proved that it could make a large and expansive game with a more varied cast. Hopefully in the Elder Scrolls V it will follow the same route.

2. A Better Engine
In its day Oblivion was one of the greatest-looking games going. Boot it up today, though, and you’ll find a game that looks something akin to a Monet painting that’s been left under a heat lamp. There was a time when we couldn’t pull our eyes from the ancient stone structures and beautiful glades, now we’re just looking at the terrible texture pop-in. Elder Scrolls V will have to be damn good looking if it’s to recall the amazing feeling we felt when emerging from Oblivion’s opening dungeon. Is the Gamebryo engine up to the task? Even Fallout 3 is looking dated by today’s standards…

3. A Fantastical World
With point number 2 in mind let’s consider another facet of Oblivion’s aesthetic that could have been a little better realised; the art direction. Compared to the more fantastical flourishes of Morrowind, Oblivion’s unimaginative take on Tolkien was rather dull – just straightforward swords and sorcery with little personality to claim as its own. Fantasy doesn’t need to be boring – just look at Guild Wars 2. A little more of that kind of colour and imagination would go a long way in The Elder Scrolls V. We saw some of it return in the Shivering Isles expansion pack – hopefully Bethesda lets even more of that imagination bleed through in the next full instalment of the game.

4. Real Radiant AI
The Radiant AI system in Oblivion promised to fix all of the simplistic NPC behaviour in Morrowind. It was meant to make NPCs that were more believable, making their own choices rather than acting according to scripted routines. A hungry NPC, for instance, would resort to stealing from others. It didn’t really work – although the AI was good, it didn’t alter the game in the way we had hoped. NPCs basically just had day and nighttime cycles – it was hardly a hugely advanced system. Hopefully, a new Elder Scrolls will attempt to realise the Radiant AI system in a more meaningful way. Although, as long as the AI is better than Fallout: New Vegas’s, we’ll be happy nevertheless.

5. Maintain The Core Appeal of The Series
Ok, this one’s not really an improvement, as such, but it’s vital. We’ve suggested a fair few changes, but the one thing we really want from a new Elder Scrolls is to ensure certain things stay the same. If the opening hours of the game don’t see us emerge into a huge world with potential spread out in every direction, and let us choose the direction we head in, it will be a great disappointment indeed. The Elder Scrolls is a series about telling your own stories. More importantly than anything else The Elder Scrolls V, if it does indeed exist, needs to allow its players to scribe their own narrative within its open world.

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  • sean

    Couldn’t agree more.

  • Garan

    Every thing in Oblivion looked plastic….and they should throw in some limb severing too.

  • Zeno

    Bethesda have already said that they’re completely revamped the engine…

    Otherwise I couldn’t agree more.

  • FishIsTwonk

    I couldn’t agree more with all of these points, but I think there are more important points that should be included in the game. I mean in my opinion, the last 4 are essential, the first one would be good but not essential. One things I’d love to see in a game is a choice of not only what you wear, what weapons you use and where you move. But how you wear your clothes, how you hold/use your weapons, how you move.. an example could be including a hood on your clothing, then you can put it up or down to hide yourself or just look evil I guess? Or if you want to hold the sword in your right or left hand, if you want to hold a blade facing upwards or downwards, if you want 2 blades.. I dont know how you could personalise walking/running but I assume you could.
    (Also seen a comment on limb severing.. (and vats was good imo)

  • CptFishNut

    List of Things I want to see in the Elder Scrolls V; Skyrim

    1. Set Leveling- enemies and npc’s should have a pre-set level that does not change whatsoever as the player levels up…woe to the player that wants to try to take on a den of savage ogres at lvl 1! They had better level up, have a spectacular strategy in mind, or have found a killer weapon in a random loot chest if they hope to survive.

    2. Reactive Environment- if the player swings an axe at a tree it should chip away or even get stuck-heck if they do it enough the tree should come down on top of them! Magic should also be taken into consideration-if you shoot a fireball at a bush it should burst into flame!

    3. Smarter A.I.- bandits and creatures shouldn’t just walk in circles until a player happens upon them. They should set traps and ambushes and even stalk the player! This should also apply to the npc’s (i.e. merchants and adventurers traveling to and fro).

    4. Better Racial Interaction- should the player be a puny woodelf with 0 fame or 0 infamy he or she should be treated as the scum of the earth by npc’s. If the player has evolved into a powerful Breton mage or a fearsome Nord warrior they should be feared and respected by the npc’s. Also different dialogues should be used when npc’s interact with the player’s various race selections (i.e. a dark elf should have different dialogue shot at him than say an orc should).

    5. Advanced Combat- no more slash, block, slash, block, slash, block. More advanced fighting moves should be implemented in both the player controls and the npc controls…how cool would it be to have an enemy combatent get there sword caught on your shield and then you counter with a wild thrust at their exposed midsection? Or if you shoot a lightning bolt at a mage and they block it with a magical shield? Or if a well placed arrow makes the unfortunate bandit limp into battle?