The 8 most ambitious Skyrim mods in development right now
It may yet be years before we get to play The Elder Scrolls 6, which means that Skyrim mods are definitely going to stay relevant for a long time to come. The Elder Scrolls modding community has always been ambitious and prolific, churning out wonderful small mods alongside giant, epic new adventures. We've already been treated to the likes of massive mods like Enderal and Legacy of the Dragonborn and other adventures on our list of best Skyrim Special Edition mods. And there are still a lot of modded adventures yet to come in Skyrim before we ever arrive in TES6.
There are some extremely ambitious Skyrim mods being worked on even in Modders haven't lowered the bar for ambition, meaning there are still more expansion-sized stories being created. Like the next Elder Scrolls game itself, some of these mods are so big and ambitious that their developers don't know when they'll actually be released. We've collected some of the biggest Skyrim mods currently in development that you'll want to keep an eye on.
Time in development: Since
Estimated release date: Unknown
Skyblivion is likely the best known of the ambitious Elder Scrolls mods in the works right now. As part of The Elder Scrolls Renewal Project, the Skyblivion team is attempting to recreate The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion as a massive mod for Skyrim. This mod is rebuilding all of Cyrodiil, along with its quests and creatures. Not just that, but the world space that the team is building is actually bigger than Skyrim's.
Work on Skyblivion started not long after Skyrim itself launched, so this one has been in development for quite a while. The Skyblivion team released a quest demonstration in early to show off its map, interface, and a playthrough of a quest. Things certainly seem to be moving along. As for which Oblivion systems are making the jump to Skyblivion, the team says it's working on underwater combat but recreating Oblivion's lockpicking isn't a high priority. I wouldn't hold your breath for Oblivion's conversation minigame either. That's probably not a common request, even though some of us foolishly like it.
Skyblivion doesn't have a known release date, but you can watch for updates on the project leader's YouTube channel.
Time in development: Since
Estimated release date: Unknown
Skywind is another mod underneath The Elder Scrolls Renewal Project umbrella. As the name gives away, this one is designed to recreate Morrowind inside of Skyrim's engine. Like Skyblivion, it's a huge undertaking the involves rebuilding an entire game world as a Skyrim mod. Morrowind definitely has a weirder and darker fantasy vibe compared with the later Oblivion and Skyrim, so it's pretty darn neat to see it in a newer engine.
It's been in the works for nine years at this point and isn't playable yet, but the team has been posting some actual gameplay demonstrations since the summer of , the latest of which you can see up above. Building Morrowind inside Skyrim has involved some compromises, however, and the Skywind team breaks down which systems will be recreated on its website.
Skywind will include Skyrim's quest markers and fast travel, for example, but the team hopes to make those options configurable. As in Morrowind, Skywind will let you kill essential characters (unlike Skyrim). The team is attempting to recreate a version of Morrowind's custom spell system too.
Time in development: Since
Estimated release date: Individual releases
Playable: Beyond Skyrim: Bruma
Beyond Skyrim isn't actually a single mod. It's a collaboration between several different modding teams, each building different Tamriel provinces as Skyrim mods. The effort to create all of Tamriel inside a single game has its roots back before Skyrim itself even launched, so Beyond Skyrim has actually been around as long as the game itself. It differs from projects like Skywind and Skyblivion because it isn't actually attempting to recreate another game inside Skyrim. Instead, Beyond Skyrim teams are building Tamriel's other provinces as they'd exist at the time of The Elder Scrolls V.
So far, the team working on creating Cyrodiil has released the Beyond Skyrim: Bruma mod, which adds the snowy city you'll remember from Oblivion, with tons of characters and quests to find there. You can find information on all the other provinces being developed on Beyond Skyrim's website.
Time in development: Since
Estimated release date: Unknown
Sure, The Elder Scrolls Online exists, but that isn't really multiplayer Skyrim. If you want to co-op through your Nord adventures with friends, Skyrim Together is one to keep an eye on. It's envisioned as a fully co-op Skyrim for two to eight players. As you can imagine, getting Bethesda's RPG to play nicely on a server is no easy feat, so Skyrim Together isn't exactly a stable experience just yet.
Skyrim Together doesn't have a full release yet, but you can try out an older, less stable version if you're dedicated. Skyrim Together previously released nightly builds of its in development version, which you can still learn how to access in the Together team's tutorial up there. That version of the mod has quite a few caveats on what is and isn't synced between players. Quest progress and dialogue are not, for instance.
The modding team has moved away from that version of Skyrim Together though and are now developing a version referred to as "Reborn" and "Tilted Online" that's designed to work for co-op Fallout as well. Skyrim Together is now in a somewhat unknown position. It faced a major setback after apologizing for using code belonging to Skyrim Script Extender back in As of late , its lead developer has now taken an indefinite break. Skyrim Together hasn't been totally abandoned, but it appears to now be in the hands of the modding community at large.
Time in development: Since
Estimated release date: Unknown
Apotheosis is another large expansion mod, this one set across the 16 realms of the Oblivion wastes. Its latest trailer up there does the best job of communicating what a beautiful and creepy world it's creating. On top of the new areas, Apotheosis is spinning an epic quest about fighting and bargaining your way past a host of Daedric princes. Apotheosis has been in development for several years now, at least since its first appearance in Unfortunately its original demo version is no longer available, but the full mod is looking closer to completion all the time. You can see more details in their latest progress update.
Three more expansion-sized mods
Here are another three work in progress modding projects for Skyrim that are worth keeping an eye on:
Olenveld - This is a large quest and location mod based on the island Olenveld in Skyrim, with an adventure based on the history of the island found in a lore book in game.
Lordbound - Another expansion-sized mod boasts 40 quests, 50 dungeons, voice acting, and its own soundtrack. It's set in the Druadach Valley separating Skyrim from High Rock.
Odyssey of the Dragonborn - This giant mod is a follow up to the extremely popular Legacy of the Dragonborn, adding another museum to go on quests for across several new areas of Tamriel.
Lauren loves long books and even longer RPGs. She got a game design degree and then, stupidly, refused to leave the midwest. She plays indie games you haven't heard of and will never pass on a story about players breaking games or playing them wrong.
What are the best Skyrim mods on PS4, Xbox One, and PC?
Skyrim refuses to stay gone for long. The Special Edition landed on consoles and PC and finally brought mods to both PS4 and Xbox One.
Then at the end of , the 10th anniversary edition brings the best Skyrim mods to the current generation, as well as brand-new content to PS5 and Xbox Series X/S.
If you need a quick refresh on how to get skyrim mods, it's fairly easy. Just hit up the official site and filter by your platform of choice. From there you can download to your console (provided you have a Bethesda.net ID).
But what mods to choose? We've trawled through the plus available mods for consoles and found a wide range of additions to improve the base game. Some fix problems, others introduce new magic and weapons or make life just that little bit more convenient for the adventurer. A few introduce entirely new locations and quests.
Let us know if you're enjoying other mods and we'll check them out and update as we discover more.
What are the best Skyrim mods on PS4 and Xbox One?
True Vision ENB
This mod allows you to use ENB shaders and presets to bring Skyrim's visuals inline with current standards. There a lot of options to choose from which can impact game performance, so it’s worthwhile using some presets to get you started. Check out the likes of True Vision ENB for more tips.
Apocalypse - Magic of Skyrim
The Apocalypse mod ads spells to Skyrim, from everyday basics to terrifying destruction-based hexes. Each spell comes with its own little bit of lore and adds a bit of pizazz to Skyrims otherwise fairly vanilla spellcasting.
Not a magic fan? Then check out the Immersive armour and weapons mod. Each item comes with its own lore and there are a bunch of new sets and individual items you can add to the game. This mod is perfect for those of who you have already smithed the top armour sets about hours ago.
Realistic needs and desire
Unlike the Fallout series, The Elder Scrolls don’t yet have a hardcore mode. The Realistic Needs and Diseases mod solves that issue. You’ll need to sleep, eat and manage your diseases as you’ll encounter some pretty severe debuffs if you get sick.
There’s plenty of food to be found in barrels and fresh water to drink in the towns and wilderness in Skyrim, but be sure to dress appropriately and prepare for trips up the mountains where resources are scarce.
Bored of the repetitive NPC chatter? The Interesting NPC mod adds a tonne of new NPCs with unique dialogue, quests and lore. The voice-acting is of a high standard, with the odd funny line here and there.
Skyrim Redone is for those of who really want to shake things up. This mod offers a complete overhaul of Skyrim’s major systems, player skills and stats. It also comes with a better Sneak package including a grappling hook and new gear. This mod could seriously break your game, so we’d advise getting rid of other mods before you begin.
Modders patch the bugs that Bethesda doesn't
We're not saying Bethesda games are notorious for being buggy, but Bethesda games are notorious for being buggy. Which is why you need the Unofficial Skyrim Special Edition patch.
Updated regularly, this mod aims to fix as many bugs and glitches in Skyrim Special Edition as possible, from text and NPC bugs to quest and gameplay problems. You can read a full changelog here and it's huge, which is why the authors are asking you to help them by reporting any bugs to them. They're doing you a massive favour with this patch, so let's all get involved and spread the love.
Visit the award-winning Forgotten City
Returning to Skyrim isn't just about returning to familiar places. In fact, if you've trampled around Skyrim for hours in a previous console life, why not visit an entirely new area and try original quests?
The Forgotten City mod is an award-winning expansion to Skyrim offering up 8 hours worth of new adventures. Full of puzzles, dilemmas, great storytelling, an original score and multiple endings, it's a fantastic and worthy addition to The Elder Scrolls world. You only need to be level 5 or above to experience it, so we recommend checking it out at the very least to see what a dedicated modding community can build.
Craft all 85 scrolls in the game
The problem with magic in Skyrim is that it takes an age to level up and get the best spells, and it uses an absolute wedge of magika for the really cool high-level spells.
Well, this Scroll Crafting mod is the only thing budding Gandalfs need, empowering players to create pure magic build characters from the off.
It caters to 85 craftable scrolls and creates a player dungeon in the College of Winterhold, which brings with it a new perk system, complete with inscription table and chest to keep your scrolls and materials safe. Oh, and there's the ability to create paper rolls for scroll crafting and a crafting book to ensure you have everything you need to cook up a batch of magic for your adventures.
Cheat your way to success with the Cheat Room
There's a fairly decent chance that you could be playing Skyrim: Special Edition having played in the world of Skyrim many times before. This is a best-selling PS3 and Xbox game, after all - and if that's the case, you may want to give yourself a leg up. For that, there's The Cheat Room - which does pretty much exactly what you'd expect it to do, to be honest.
The cheat room keeps things nice and simple - this Xbox One exclusive mod gives you access to a single room and gives you access to a spell that you can cast to teleport yourself in there. Inside you'll find every item in the game, plus triggers that can let you duplicate items, level yourself up, learn every shout, add money - all that good stuff.
On top of that, the room even offers you access to special triggers that'll let you modify the game in ways similar to how PC users with console access can - change levels, spawn characters, change relationships, change your character's appearance - whatever you want. Useful!
Use new Elemental Destruction magic
Destruction magic is the main damage-dealer for mages in Skyrim, but the base game only comes with three different types: fire, frost and shock. If you're building out a pure magic character for your adventures, you're going to want a little more oomph to your open palms.
Which is where the Elemental Destruction Magic mod comes in. It adds 30 Earth, Water and Wind Destruction spells to the game, along with three weapon and three armour enhancements and a Dragon Priest mask for each element.
You don't get all of this for free though. You'll need to level up your destruction skill to get the better magic, and all spells need to be bought or found. Faralda at the College of Winterhold sells all the spells but there's also a chance you'll find enchanted weapons with these new spells as loot. Be warned though; enemies will also have the ability to use these spells too - they're not strictly for the player.
Invite sassy Sofia along as your new favourite companion
The Skyrim companions are a generally nice bunch. They don't say a lot, but there's no denying they're useful in a fight and can carry all that extra loot when you're deep in the darkest of dungeons. But you know, they lack the personality to really create a magical rapport as you wander across Skyrim.
Enter Sofia, the modded companion with attitude. Fully voiced, forever sarcastic, boastful and a tease, Sofia will liven up your adventures with her custom dialogue and rebellious spirit. She's great fun and is likely to become your new BFF as you kick it across the wilderness together.
Improve the NPC AI across the board
Bethesda's radiant AI system for its open world games was pretty state of the art when it made its debut back in Oblivion, and while it has been upgraded and still impresses in some ways it's probably quite fair to say it's not quite as impressive now as it used to be. Luckily for us, some fans have been beavering away trying to improve the AI of the citizens of Skyrim.
The Immersive Citizens mod is available in both PS4 and Xbox One variants. It improves NPC behavior across the board, making them more unpredictable in their actions and making them react to things like weather and other external stimuli.
Most importantly, this mod also changes how NPCs react to combat and being under threat. NPCs will evaluate dangerous situations and if they think they're about to be crushed they'll try to run away to a safe place, usually a building within a city. If you're using it with some other types of mod be aware there may be clashes - they're listed in detail on the Immersive Citizens mod page.
Claim these lethal Power Greatswords
Surprises are cool so let's not spoil anything here. The Power Greatswords mod adds four new two-handed blades to the game for you to use, and it's fair to say they are pretty damn lethal.
As well as not saying exactly what they do in terms of damage, you're also going to have to find them in Skyrim (although if you know the game it's not that tricky). The Big Blue Greatsword, BloodNord Blade, and Blue Night Greatsword are found near an NPC witch, and the Dragon Greatsword well, the clue's in the name. Good luck hunting them down.
Fight for your life with hardcore difficulty and mortal wounds
Difficulty in Skyrim is a bit warped. Higher level enemies are deadly, but they can also take an absolute age to kill. Whacking a hagraven 50 times just isn't fun.
This Hardcore Difficulty mod adjusts the unfair Legendary, Master and Expert settings. At Legendary difficulty you'll be dealing 4 times the normal damage - but so will your enemies - meaning fights are a lot tenser and deadly. Combine this with the Mortal Wounds mod, meaning you won't regenerate health, and combat becomes a much more thrilling experience in Skyrim.
Speed up that EXP bar for faster levelling
Earlier on we've listed a few cheat mods that let you cheat in a more outright and brazen way, but if you want something a little lighter-touch, perhaps just increasing the leveling curve of the game across the board is more your speed.
The Faster Levelling mod does just that - no fuss, no messing about - it just increases the rate at which your skills level up, making your skills advance over twice as quickly as they do in the vanilla game. While other mods give you access to this kind of feature-set alongside other potentially tempting cheats that you might not want to use, this mod just does this and only this - removing the temptation.
It's available in both PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions.
Visit Conan and hear the lamentation of the women
This is perfect for all the Conan fans out there. The Conan Hyborian Age mod adds a new dungeon and quest to Skyrim, based on the movie and featuring replica movie props and the big man himself - although you can't play as Conan, he's just an NPC.
It's a great package, with the quest featuring original battle music, Conan lore on the loading screens, new bosses and enemies and the kind of attention to detail that shows a real love for modding and the source material.
Calm down annoying animals
You know how it is. You're on a quest, fully focused on reaching your objective, adjusting your plan of attack in your mind, when out of the blue a bunch of friggin' mudcrabs start giving it large. I'm not starting any trouble, so what's up with these aggressive little sods having a pop at me?
The Less Aggressive Animals mod calms everyone down. It neuters some of the most annoying creatures in Skyrim; mudcrabs, skeevers, wolves and spriggans. And it also makes bears, horkers, giants, mammoths and sabre cats more cautious. They won't attack on sight, but they will defend themselves if you get too close. Now you can go about your dungeon raiding business without sneak attacks from the local wildlife.
Carry more loot
Fact: there is never enough space to carry everything you want in any RPG. You start off with good intentions. "I'll only carry what I need and my favourite weapons," you tell yourself. But within half an hour you carry everything on the off chance some old biddy in the next town will gift you an amazing weapon if you give her a mundane item. And you're paranoid about anything you leave behind in case you need it 67 hours later. The next thing you know you're walking like a slug and sifting through your backpack throwing out all kinds of junk.
Which is where the Ring of Increased Carry Weight comes in. It actually gives you two rings; one with an extra 1, carry weight capacity, and another offering an extra million. Yeah, that should do it. Buy the ring from Belethor's place in Whiterun and horde away like the little magpie you are.
Find your way more easily
Sure, you've got a map, but that doesn't list a lot of the smaller places in Skyrim. And lots of roads, paths and intersections are just completely unmarked. How are you meant to find your way around?
Enter the Point The Way mod, which litters the world with signposts and directions, making your travels a damn-sight less frustrating. Simple, and incredibly useful.
Let's talk about our feelings
If you're going to be spending hours in Skyrim you're going to want to hear more varied conversation. The inhabitants of Whiterun aren't that chatty and you'll soon hear the same dialogue repeated over and over again.
The Relationship Dialogue Overhaul is here to save your sanity. It adds over 5, new lines of dialogue from 42 different voice types, for friends, spouses, rivals and followers - the people you overhear all the time, basically. Friends will recognise you more often and have more to say, followers will comment during combat, and the mod corrects mistakes with the original dialogue as well as using speech that has been hidden away in-game. It's one big social mod and you should use it to make the world of Skyrim come alive.
Exploit the capitalist system
There you are with a backpack full of goodies after a long day adventuring. You're going to sell them and make a fortune, and then use that money to buy some sweet-ass armour. Then you get to the local merchant and realise the dude behind the counter can't even begin to afford your goods.
Which is where the Rich Merchants of Skyrim mod comes in. It increases the amount of money a shop has, meaning it can afford to buy all that loot you've been chugging around for days, dangerously close to your maximum inventory weight. Sorted.
Light the way better with the Lampposts of Skyrim
Sometimes the smallest change can seriously up your immersion, and Lampposts of Skyrim is one of those mods that not only increases immersion but actually features a smart change that adds something to the game in ease-of-use terms, too.
Put simply, this mod adds lampposts to many of the roads around Skyrim. It doesn't exactly make sense that officially-laid roads near towns would be pitch-black at night, and so this mod fixes that. This helps with immersion but also is useful - these lampposts make it easier to travel at night and help you to stick to or keep away from the roads depending on your inclination.
There are PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions of the mod available.
Restore a whole bunch of missing content
For whatever reasons, there's a whole bunch of content hidden away in Skyrim's code that just never made it to the final game. The Cutting Room Floor mod restores a lot of it, bringing back NPCs, locations, and finishing up some questlines that you would otherwise never see in the vanilla version of the game. Now you'll feel like you're getting the full Skyrim experience.
Turn Skyrim into a survival game
Frostfall: Hypothermia Camping Survival is one of the highest-rated mods for PC Skyrim for good reason. It essentially turns Skyrim into a survival sim, with three new mechanics based on camping, cold water and hypothermia. You can tweak these to your own specifications, and go as hardcore as you like with them.
It also adds new spells, an endurance skill, snow and ice effects and disables fast travel if you want to play really hardcore. If you're looking to immerse yourself deeper in the world of Skyrim, Frostfall is an absolute must.
More crafting options for thieves and archers
Crafting is actually pretty good in Skyrim, and very useful for most builds. But for those of us who like to play it a bit more stealthily, there's not a lot to craft for our weapon of choice - the bow - and you can never have enough lockpicks, right?
Sure enough then, Ars Metallica helps solve that problem. It basically lets you craft more arrows using common resources, as well as making lockpicks and providing skill advancement for using the forge itself.
Burp and fart more
We're all for more realism in games. The beauty of the Immersive Indigestion mod is that the person who created it really put their all into it: "some of the sounds I created myself using my own indigestion." That's dedication for you.
So with this mod NPCs will now burp and fart when they are around you, usually when they are exerting themselves, such as when swinging weapons. That's it really. A guffing and grumbling mod. Excellent.
Now this is a mod. Falskaar adds a whole new land mass to Skyrim, complete with NPCs and dungeons to explore with its 26 new quests.
There's over 20 hours worth of game here according to the creators, as well as additional spells and a new shout, to round out the package. It's not so much a mod as an unofficial expansion pack to the game. Go get it.
Add new spells
This one is strictly for the mages. The Phenderix Magic Evolved mod adds + new spells to the game, making mages the most powerful class in Skyrim. Spells are varied and creative, with a whole new range of archetypes including poison, darkness, spirit, blood and summoning.
Want to summon any creature in Skyrim? Now you can. Want to continue to dual-wield weapons while using magic as a power? Oh yes. Also, you can turn an enemy into a chicken. If wizarding is your thing, you need to be all over this.
Brush your shoulders off
Skyrim's not exactly the place you're going to get a suntan, but it's only on the higher hills and peaks that the snow feels deep underfoot. Weather effects aren't really reflected on your character, unfortunately, which breaks the illusions somewhat.
So this simple Rain and Snow FX mod is a really nice way of adding a layer of snow to your hero's shoulders or have water drip from your adventurer's clothes when they clamber out of water. A very nice little touch.
Cheat and carry everything you could possibly want
Sometimes you've got to act like a spoilt child and have everything now.
The minimally-named Cheat Mod gives you a container in the Warmaiden's forge in Whiterun, where you will find of every crafting ingredient. It also gives you strongboxes with , pieces of gold and a ring that boosts your carry weight by ,
Wield Sauron's mace and other legendary weapons
Every fantasy role-playing game owes a lot to JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, of that there is no doubt. Now you can partially recreate some of that original magic by using the LOTR Weapon Collection mod, which as its name suggests adds weapons from the classic stories.
Here you'll find Sting, Sauron's mace, Wraith greatswords, Legolas' bow and more.
Try an entirely new alternate start
Playing Skrim for a second time but want a completely fresh start? The Live Another Life mod allows you do exactly that. You will not be on that wagon, heading for the chop before a dragon attacks and throws everything into chaos. Oh no, this cuts out the entire Helgen sequence, meaning you can choose your race and get exploring Skyrim as soon as you begin.
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Skyrim Mod Adds Witcher as Playable Race
By Michael Brandon Ingram
A newly released mod for The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim features the addition of a Witcher race based on the series of the same name.
The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim has become one of the most easily recognizable titles in the modern gaming world. Skyrim has seen several releases over the ten years since its release, bringing the world of Tamriel to most modern consoles. One of the most popular elements of the Bethesda RPG that has helped to sustain its large, passionate fanbase has been the wide variety of mods, as many bring new experiences. One recent mod looks to supplement the world of Skyrim with the stylings of another of gaming's biggest RPGs.
Skyrimmods run the gamut from adding loads of new spells and weapons to the game to bringing in popular characters like Resident Evil: Village's Lady Dimitrescu. A recent mod featured on PCGamesN looks to combine the world of Skyrim with CD Projekt Red's similarly massive RPG franchise, The Witcher. The newly-released mod features a Witcher race added into Skyrim, complete with full customization that allows players to create their own take on the iconic Geralt of Rivia or create a Witcher all their own.
RELATED: Skyrim Player Uses Mods to Turn the Game Into Star Wars
The Witcher race features some fairly powerful bonuses compared to the vanilla game's races, regenerating stats like health and magicka times as fast as other races. The race also boasts enhanced damage for unarmed combat, with the Witcher race's punches being three times as strong as that of other races. The mod also adds the Witcher franchise's Aard and Igni signs, with the modder intending to add more in the future.
The mod's creater, RobA, suggests pairing the Witcher race mod with a previously released Skyrim mod titled "A Witcher's Adventure". The previous mod adds a plethora of features from the Witcher franchise, including more of the game's signs, weapons, and monsters, with even a main questline for the mod inspired by The Witcher. The Witcher has been a popular subject for Skyrim modders, as the two games' high fantasy worlds mesh well with one another.
Even ten years after The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim's initial release, the franchise's passionate playerbase continues to keep the series' flame burning in anticipation of the sixth Elder Scrolls title. Bethesda has continued to provide players with new ways to experience the world of Skyrim, with Skyrim VR offering unparalleled immersion into the world of Tamriel. A hilarious audio version in the form of Amazon Alexa's Skyrim: Very Special Edition is also available.
Skyrim has forged a legacy that will be tough for The Elder Scrolls 6 to match, and it is clear that Skyrim fans will continue to keep the game active for years to come.
The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim is available now for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox , Xbox One, and Switch. The game's Anniversary Edition will release on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S on November
MORE: The Elder Scrolls 6: The Khajiit Deserve Better Than They Got in Morrowind, Oblivion, and Skyrim
Intrepid adventurers playing The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim have more than exploration available to them. Here are the best and worst romances in the game.
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The Forgotten City
The Forgotten City is a mysteryadventurerole-playing game developed by Australian developer Modern Storyteller and published by Dear Villagers with additional support from Film Victoria. It is a full video game adaptation of the critically-acclaimed The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrimmod of the same name. Initially released in as a mod, the full game was released in July for the PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows. A cloud-based version launched in September for the Nintendo Switch.
In both the full game and the mod, the story of The Forgotten City explores the existential relationship between humanity and its laws. The game begins with the protagonist waking after being rescued from floating down the Tiber River by a woman named Karen. Karen asks them to look for her friend, Al Worth, who disappeared whilst investigating some nearby ruins. As the player explores said ruins, they are sent towards the era of the Roman Empire towards the now-restored city. As the plot progresses and the player continues exploring it's elaborated that the city is under the conditional protection of the gods, where if anyone is to commit sin, all citizens of the city would be equally punished and turned into gold in a system referred to as the Golden Rule (originally Dwarves' Law). These gold statues, depicting previous inhabitants and residents, can be heard by seemingly only the player whispering towards them. The specific sins that are criteria for the Golden Rule to be enacted are not clear to any resident of the city, with numerous records of contradictions. The player is able to re-enter the portal they had entered from and restart the time loop if the Golden Rule is ever enacted, allowing them to keep both physical and mental objects such as important items and information.
The plot was significantly altered from its original story in the mod; with the setting of a Dwemer ruin being shifted towards that of ancient Rome as well as much as the script being updated and rewritten. Multiple endings were both added and expanded from the original story.
Each character in the game has a strong background story and argument, complicating the decisions players make in the game. In the future, the developer plans to provide expansion through mods.
The long development progress of The Forgotten City, spearheaded by lead developer and writer Nick Pearce, began from the beginning of Skyrim's release in Prior to this, Pearce has stated that his inspiration for creating mods came back from his experience with mods from Fallout: New Vegas, specifically New Vegas Bounties by Someguy The Forgotten City took over hours for Pearce to develop, and was his first ever major development project. After the mod released to critical acclaim, he begged for internships and was rejected by numerous AAA gaming studios in both the United States and Australia. The mod later released on console releases of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim: Special Edition, remaining one of the top Xbox One mods for the game.
In , after the release of the mod, Pearce quit his day job as an Uber driver and hired several other developers to form Modern Storyteller. The resulting development process took four and a half years, with much of the harsh development conditions laboured by Pearce himself to avoid crunching fellow developers, with Pearce working hour weeks to the point of hallucination. During the process the original mod was entirely overhauled; the setting was changed and numerous improvements were made, such as professional voice acting, unique gameplay mechanics, an original orchestral score. In the end, the original script was doubled from roughly 35, words to over 80,
Both the mod and the full video game received critical acclaim upon release, itself being one of the first video game mods to receive any official accolades outside of the modding community, specifically being awarded by the Australian Writers' Guild. The mod had garnered large success within the modding community, remaining one of the top mods for the game and becoming one of the most curated items on Mod DB itself.
IGN awarded the game a 9/10 stating: "The Forgotten City does a fabulous job exploring interesting moral quandaries through excellently written dialogue and characters." Luke Holland of The Guardian gave it 4/5 stars, writing that despite minor technical issues, "The Forgotten City is a tremendous achievement, a labyrinthine little sandbox packed with interpersonal mysteries", which "unravel further and further with each pass."
- ^"Home". forgottencitygame.com.
- ^Whitehead, Thomas (September 23, ). "The Forgotten City - Cloud Version Is Out Today On Switch". Nintendo Life. Retrieved September 24,
- ^Macgregor, Jody (June 18, ). "The Forgotten City is a popular Skyrim mod that could make a great game".
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