Like a variety of Elder Scrolls followers, I have been hungering for the discharge of The Elder Scrolls 6 for years. I really like Oblivion, which got here out in 2006, and I really like Skyrim, which arrived in 2011. There have been solely 5 years between these two video games, however we’re now 11 years into the hole between TES5 and 6. And we have nonetheless bought not less than a number of years to go. The watch for extra singleplayer Elder Scrolls has been pretty excruciating.
So for the previous couple years I have been a bit aggravated about Starfield coming forward of TES6 on Bethesda’s schedule. I used to be positively taken with a Bethesda recreation with spaceships and planets as a substitute of horses and cities, however what I needed greater than something was extra Elder Scrolls. Give us that first, I believed, and then make your little house recreation.
However one thing humorous occurred once I noticed the trailer for Starfield final June. I out of the blue realized: Oh. By no means thoughts. I am going to take Starfield first, truly. And the extra I considered it, the extra I realised I am completely blissful to maintain ready for TES6. Even when I’ve to attend one other 5 or ten years.
The reason being, merely, that I need a contemporary begin. I need to step into a brand new recreation world that is not tied to a half-dozen video games that got here earlier than it. I need to learn a journal and see a reputation and never instantly Google it to see if it is a identify from one other recreation that got here out years in the past. I need to see one thing on a map and never must alt-tab out and browse a bunch of wiki pages to refresh my reminiscence on what that place is and why it is vital. I feel I’ve come down with a situation known as Fictional Lore And Historical past Fatigue (FLAHF). I need a recreation set in a totally new place, with a clear slate, the place it isn’t drenched in references to a ton of different issues that got here earlier than.
That is one thing I have been feeling lots these days, and never simply with video games. I contemplate myself a Star Wars fan, however once I watch an episode of The Mandolarian I at all times wind up seeing movies a pair days later titled “781 Issues You Missed In That Episode Of The Mandalorian, You Dumb Shit!” And I am like, what? What did I miss? The Mandalorian shot some guys and Child Yoda ate one thing he should not have. Was there extra?
And what I missed was one thing like, oh, the man within the bar ingesting the purple drink in that one scene? That was Buttso Glarblort! You recognize Buttso, who appeared within the 1993 Star Wars novel Inheritor to the Ewok and was referenced in a deleted scene from Season 3, Episode 4 of Clone Wars the place he was additionally ingesting a purple drink in the identical bar! And he is a Sith or one thing! It is a pleasant easter egg each fan of Star Wars instantly acknowledged, and for those who did not, you are not an actual Star Wars fan.
With these decade-spanning fictional universes, be they Marvel, Star Wars, or The Elder Scrolls, these of us who have not consumed and digested and memorized each final scrap of leisure from the previous 30 or so years, I wind up feeling like a bit like a stranger within the worlds I really like. And sometimes when the creators of those universes attempt to tie every thing collectively it is so clunky and cumbersome, like once they felt a necessity to elucidate—in maybe the dumbest scene ever put to movie—the place Han Solo bought his final identify. Positive, it may be satisfying to catch a reference in a recreation or present or movie that solely longtime followers will spot, however there’s one thing to be mentioned for loosening the stranglehold on the previous and simply forging forward with one thing utterly new.
I’ve spent over 200 hours in each Oblivion and Skyrim, however in relation to the overwhelming quantity of lore and historical past of the world, I’ve forgotten way over I bear in mind. The concept of moving into The Elder Scrolls 6 and having to as soon as once more take a refresher course on the geography and the eras and the seasons and the races and languages and every thing else that is piled up through the years feels exhausting. I am blissful to delay that exhaustion in favor of a completely new setting in Starfield. (It would not damage that the brand new setting may have spaceships and robots.)
I need a contemporary begin in a brand new world, the place I do know precisely what each different participant is aware of, which is little to nothing. I am not saying I would not be stoked if TES6 had a shock launch right this moment. I am certain I might play the shit out of it and overlook Starfield was even a factor. (I am additionally fairly certain Starfield goes to be brimming with easter eggs for different Bethesda video games.) However I am much more taken with absorbing new lore in a brand new world if it means I haven’t got to recall all of the previous lore from the previous world that goes together with it.