Todd Howard Prefers Not to Remaster Morrowind, Fallout 1

Bethesda is also big enough that it doesn't have to outsource development.

News by Matt Kim, .

You all know the meme, what system isn't Bethesda's Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim available on? First appearing on PS3, PC, and Xbox 360 consoles Skyrim has since been remastered and re-released on PS4, Xbox One, Switch, and VR. But Bethesda's Todd Howard says that you shouldn't expect to see older Elder Scrolls games like Morrowind receive the same treatment.

In an interview with The Guardian Bethesda director Todd Howard says that he'd rather you play Morrowind in its original form. "I'm happy that you can play Morrowind now on an Xbox One, as it's backwards compatible. I'm really happy that Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo, and others are making it easier for people to play [older games] as they were played at the time. I actually prefer that over remasters," said Howard.

The closest you'll get is Elder Scrolls Online Morrowind apparently.

Howard goes into some specifics about why a Morrowind remaster isn't in the cards and it sounds like it comes down to just how the development cycle went for Skyrim compared to Morrowind. "For Skyrim remastered, we had done some work on it but it was already pretty visually close. But for something like Morrowind, my personal preference is not to remaster it." Howard cites that he feels similarly for requests asking for remasters of Fallout 1, saying that players can just play the original on PC the way it was meant to be played.

The Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind first came out on PC and Xbox in 2002. Directed by Todd Howard, Morrowind was a popular western RPG that set the stage for Elder Scrolls on consoles. It was followed by Elders Scrolls 4: Oblivion on PC, Xbox 360 and PS3, and of course Skyrim.

The Guardian interview touches on other development tidbits from Howard and Bethesda. For instance, even though Fallout: New Vegas proved to be a big success after Bethesda outsourced the game to an external development team at Obsidian, it's unlikely future Bethesda games will outsource big games in the future. This is because Bethesda has grown so much that such a move is unnecessary.

Skyrim continues to be one of the most popular PC RPGs. You can find our complete Skyrim guide with walkthroughs, tips, and secrets. Or you can find our list of best Skyrim mods in case you want to spice up your adventure with some creator content.

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Comments 9

  • Avatar for hdthroh #1 hdthroh 2 months ago
    I had been away from gaming for a long time before playing Morrowind. It completely blew my mind. It was everything I wanted from a video game RPG growing up in the 80s. I still think about it far more than I should.
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  • Avatar for WiIIyTheAntelope #2 WiIIyTheAntelope 2 months ago
    I actually went back and played Morrowind after it got added to BC. To say that it has not aged well is a huge understatement. Everything just feels so incredibly clunky, you'd think the game is about 10 years older than it actually is. If there's any game that needs a remaster, that's it.
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  • Avatar for MetManMas #3 MetManMas 2 months ago
    It's fine if Todd Howard doesn't want to do a full-on remaster of Morrowind, but the game could still be better in the console space. The Xbox One X's emulation might make the game look and run better than it did on the original Xbox, but it still doesn't change that it's a vastly inferior version of the game. A proper modern console port could add better load times, better resolution, better draw distance, a less terrible UI. Like, it doesn't have to have shiny new textures or a brand new engine, just bring it more in line with the unmodded PC version!

    As for Fallout 1 and 2, I don't need fancy remakes of them either, I just want a way to play the original games on my tablet. You know, like I can with Planescape: Torment and the other Black Isle (and sometimes BioWare) RPGs.
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  • Avatar for allaiyahweyn #4 allaiyahweyn 2 months ago
    The last two ES games had a very generic quasi-medieval generic fantasy world. Bethesda needs to take us back to the alien Wonderland. If not through a remake then at least through a direct sequel to Morrowind.
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  • Avatar for nimzy #5 nimzy 2 months ago
    The big thing about outsourcing development is creative control. Bethesda have only made two Fallout games since they acquired the IP. Allowing another third-party spinoff to be made essentially results in a 50/50 split between first- and third-party games. That kind of parity risks the third-party studios being able to decide what is and isn't Fallout.

    (That New Vegas is a cult favorite while 3 and 4 are less popular is also something of a sore spot.)
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  • Avatar for MetManMas #6 MetManMas 2 months ago
    @allaiyahweyn Yeah, that's why I was hoping for Black Marsh. A society of sentient lizard people in the swamp who worship trees would most certainly be alien.

    Though from what little we've seen of Elder Scrolls VI so far I'm thinking the new setting will actually be High Rock (again) or Valenwood.
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  • Avatar for Dorchadas #7 Dorchadas 2 months ago
    I know a remaster would never make it as great as modded Morrowind can, but even just implementing some of the changes from Morrowind Graphics Extender like grass and increased draw distance, and some of the changes from the Morrowind Code Patch like fixing the unarmored bug and the various ways changing mods during a game will ruin your save would do wonders.
    @MetManMas Valenwood would be great unless they Oblivionize it. Cities high in the branches, the Green Pact, giant walking trees, maybe make the main plot something about the Bosmer trying to raise the Wild Hunt to overthrow the Aldmeri Dominion? I'd play the hell out of that.
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  • Avatar for MetManMas #8 MetManMas 2 months ago
    @Dorchadas Yeah...I liked Oblivion 'cuz it still had some neat stuff, but it and Skyrim definitely felt a lot more safe. It's not to say there's no cool weird stuff in either one, but Morrowind was definitely much more up front with its more bizarre features. Like, you could buy armor carved out of bug exoskeletons and fast travel on what looks like a giant flea right from the first town! Edited July 2018 by MetManMas
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  • Avatar for elliasharris #9 elliasharris 4 days ago
    Deleted 4 days ago by elliasharris
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  • Avatar for elliasharris #10 elliasharris 4 days ago
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