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Internal Bethesda 'Skyrim Game Jam' sizzle reel features dragon mounts, giant mudcrabs

Xav de Matos, @Xav

Let's pretend you work at Bethesda Game Studios. Congratulations! You've just shipped The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, a game that would go on to win multiple 'Game of the Year' awards. You're tired, probably haven't seen your family in months, and you have a week off. What do you do? Work on Skyrim, of course!

During his DICE 2012 keynote, Bethesda Games Studios game director and executive producer Todd Howard discussed an annual tradition at the company: a game jam, where staff are allowed to create anything they want on company time for one week. This year, the only stipulation was creating something within the recently released Skyrim.

In a sizzle reel presented to attendees, the public was shown what the minds at Bethesda could create. On the list? Mountable dragons, epic mounts (like flaming horses), giant mudcrab bosses that rival any other games, a new skill tree focused on lycanthropy, Kinect-enabled shouts (like this!), the ability to build homes, adopt children, use spears, and much more.

Howard was quick to note that the features shown in the video -- which were all running within the game -- were experiments. "How much of this stuff sees the light of day? To be determined. Could it be in a future DLC? We don't know. Could various parts of it just be released for free? We don't know."

And what was id Software's John Carmack doing that week? "[He] shot a rocket into f***ing space!" Howard said, showing actual footage of a rocket Carmack sent out of the earth's orbit. We'd still rather have dragon mounts. Check out the list of 'Game Jam' features after the break.

  • Seasonal foliage
  • Flow based water shader
  • Spears as weapons with a new animation system
  • Kill cams for ranged combat (follow the arrow!) and magic
  • New stealth options like water arrows and assassinations
  • Guards relight areas
  • Paralysis runes
  • Moving platforms and hanging structures in dungeons
  • Water current in dungeons
  • Dark dungeons, requiring you to light your path as you progress
  • New companion options like switching combat style, getting them to train and even craft for you
  • List favorite followers in the game's menu
  • Build your own home from scratch
  • Adopt children
  • Combine magic to create new attacks
  • Goblin enemies
  • 'Way Gate' fast travel
  • Epic mounts like a flaming horse
  • Mounted combat on horses
  • Dragon mounts
  • 'Soul bug' familiar
  • Kinect-enabled 'shouts'
  • Enhanced water effects
  • Footprints in the snow
  • Verlet surfaces for non-rigid objects ...
  • ... Like fat giants!
  • Ice and fire arrows
  • Werebears!
  • Lycanthropy-specific (werewolf) skill tree
  • Become a flying Vampire Lord
  • New Vampire imp minions
  • New Mudcrab animations
  • Giant Mudcrab enemy

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