- Bethesda Game Studios, historically known for not producing remasters or remakes, seems to be changing its approach under new management.
- A document from the FTC reveals Bethesda's plans to remasters The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and Fallout 3.
- Bethesda, Microsoft, and Xbox, have yet to release a statement addressing the document.
Over the years, it's been established that Bethesda Game Studios doesn't do remasters let alone remakes. The award-winning video game development studio has either pursued sequels, MMOs, and new IPs. It hasn't circled back to re-release an older title, except maybe when we're talking about its penchant for porting The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim on everything that can run it.
But, with new management now in charge, it appears that Bethesda is making changes as well.
As detailed in a document uploaded online by the FTC, Bethesda has a full slate of upcoming games through FY2024-2025, which includes remasters of both The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and Fallout 3.
We reported on a potential remake of the fourth mainline The Elder Scrolls game currently being in development over at Virtuous Studios back in July. It's unclear if this pipeline, as pointed out by Madjoki on ResetEra, is talking about the same project or if Bethesda has since changed its plans to turn the remaster into a full-on remake.
What's clear, however, is that Bethesda's release pipeline is no longer the same.
Case in point, of the four projects (five if you include the DLC for Doom Eternal) listed under "Console/PC" for FY2020E, only Doom Eternal, The Elder Scrolls Online: Greymoor and Fallout: Wastelanders came out as expected. Deathloop was pushed back by a year while Doom Eternal's DLCs were split into two chapters, coming out in October 2020 and March 2021, respectively.
The subsequent years saw even more massive changes, likely brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Starfield, for example, wouldn't come out until earlier this month, where it saw six million players enjoy it within a week of its launch despite the sliding reviews on both Steam and Metacritic. MachineGames' Indiana Jones project, which has sat in Todd Howard's head for over a decade, is still midway through production as well, so there's little to zero chance of seeing it become available within the next two to three years. The same goes for The Elder Scrolls VI, which may or may not be ready until 2026. Finally, it's unclear if Arkane Lyon is working on Dishonored 3 after the success of Deathloop.
Still, we should take the details revealed in the official document with a grain of salt.
While legitimate, release pipelines are fluid. As we've mentioned, Bethesda has reshuffled its release schedule so much over the years that it's impossible to know which ones are still in-development and which ones have been put on the backburner.
The good news is that this is official proof that Bethesda is thinking about remastering The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and Fallout 3, presumably for the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox Series S/X.
Given the success that Rockstar Games enjoyed with the remaster of Red Dead Redemption, it wouldn't be a surprise if the two games received a similar treatment. All three games are roughly the same age anyway. Any major overhaul will require more significant investment in Bethesda's part, which it likely can't afford on the account that it has plenty on its plate at the moment.
Then again, Bethesda is part of the Microsoft Gaming umbrella now. Even if we don't factor in Activision Blizzard, which will join the fold later this year, it has more resources than ever. If we're lucky, all the said projects listed are in active development.
But, if we were to choose which projects we'd love to see first outside of the remasters of Oblivion and Fallout 3, Doom Year Zero and the sequel to Ghostwire: Tokyo, which recently passed a major milestone, are at the top of the list.