Bethesda’s heavyweights can teach each other a thing or two.
Bethesda’s RPG franchises Fallout and The Elder Scrolls have been a big deal for fans of the RPG genre for a long time, but with recent releases in the past decade or so, the two franchises have hit mainstream popularity. And with both the franchises getting more attention and under more scrutiny than ever, Bethesda are under a great deal of pressure to deliver big time whenever they release a Fallout 5 or The Elder Scrolls 6. And perhaps the best place they can look for inspiration and improvement is their own games. There’s a lot the two franchises can learn from each other.
There was a lot of stuff that Fallout 4 did that did not sit well with fans, such as the dialogue wheel and what many thought was an excessive streamlining of its RPG mechanics, but there were some things that it did that worked rather well. For example, the fact that the game rewards you for exploring its map at your own whim, giving you XP rewards for discovering undiscovered locations, just made so much sense. And given how The Elder Scrolls games have always focused on exploration as one of their main focal points, it would make sense if Bethesda decided to include this same mechanic in the inevitable Elder Scrolls 6 as well.
Conversely, Bethesda can look at the perfect way in which Skyrim accorded players an incredible amount of freedom, not just in terms of exploring, but also in terms of roleplaying, in that the game didn’t thrust a backstory upon you and you can do whatever you want in the game, and try to incorporate that in any future Fallout games. It’s also worth noting that Fallout titles were known to feature the same kind of freedom that we see in Elder Scrolls games before Fallout 4, so hopefully Fallout 5 will revert back to that status quo.
There’s still a ways to go before Bethesda come out with another Elder Scrolls game, and longer still before we get Fallout 5, but hopefully Bethesda will, first and foremost, look inward at what their very own RPG heavyweights have done right so often in the past and incorporate that into their future titles.