Skyrim first came out in 2011. In 2016, it was re-released on the PS4, Xbox One, and in a new version for PC as the “Special Edition,” with an engine upgrade to bring its tech in line with Fallout 4.
Then, in 2017, the Special Edition came to Switch, with new optimizations to get it running just right on the handheld platform.
That’s a lot of releases for the game in a relatively short amount of time, and it’s wildly successful.
It also has a really obvious bug in its first five minutes, and it’s the only bug in the game that actually, truly bothers me.
I know that Bethesda games are infamous for bugs and glitches.
Sometimes their games just even crash outright.
But this particular bug happens in the opening moments of the game…and it’s managed to survive across several patches and re-releases.
That lady just slides right over there to push the guy down. And it’s super obvious. And right in front of the player.
Is it too random to try and reproduce? Maybe, although it happens to me pretty much every time I start a new game on any platform. Is it something inherent to the scripting system and it just can’t be fixed? Is it so difficult to fix that it wouldn’t be worth it?
NPC’s sprint around to get into place all the time in Bethesda games, but it’s usually not so egregious as having them slide into place to continue an animation. I know that this stuff is hard. And I guess in a way this bug lets you know what you might be in for.
But the rest of the opening is so carefully structured that it’s weird how it bobbles its first impression.
I still love the game and have played it for hundreds of hours. But this is like misspelling three words in the opening line of your senior thesis, or falling flat on your face at the start of a big track meet. Or another third metaphor.
Here’s some other things to click on: