Skyrim Details Emerge: Creatures, Races and AI

Todd Howard inundates us in a flood of new information about Bethesda’s upcoming RPG, Skyrim, which looks to be more lifelike than ever before.


In a recent interview with German website Gameswelt, Bethesda's Todd Howard shed light on a number of new details about the studio's upcoming epic fantasy RPG, Skyrim

Howard went straight into the details about the changes and improvements being made to the game from its predecessor, Oblivion. 

Reiterating a point from previous interviews, Todd Howard said that Skyrim would contain over 120 dungeons, with at least 100 points of interest—or side encounters. Among these encounters will be ones with the Nine Divines and the demonic Daedra, some of whom offer unique quests. The game's dungeons will span from small 15-minute ones to massive lairs that could take up to two hours to clear. 

Traps are also said to offer more interaction, and found in more areas. They will also serve as puzzles for the player to navigate. 

When asked about the game's alchemy skill, which was long considered tedious by players, Howard said that Alchemy has been given a revision, described it as working differently than Oblivion. Crafting skills like alchemy and cooking will be presented in special menus. There will also be raw and cooked variations of each food. 

Asked about the game's wildlife, Howard said that much of Skyrim is populated by mammoths, wolves, deer, elk and rabbits. Mammoths, he said, can be found near giants. 

The game's radiant AI for NPCs will include new animations that have them performing various mundane tasks, like cooking, working on leather, blacksmithing and other kinds of jobs. 

In addition to guilds (which were in the previous games), Bethesda will be providing new gameplay mechanics for warriors, wizards and stealth players to better serve players' individual tastes. 

Howard finally added that the studio doesn't have to make as many choices between how many polygons or memory they put into the environment versus the characters thanks to the game's next-gen graphics engine.