Or at least, according to lead designer Todd Howard. Hearing that a particular franchise is being made ‘more accessible’ isn’t always a good thing for longtime fans of the series because it poses the threat that something they’ve liked about the series will be changed. Some gamers like complicated games. Making them simpler for other gamers doesn’t exactly appeal to this ‘hardcore’ audience. That’s why Mr. Howard was careful to say that The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim wouldn’t be watered down or simplified for anybody, it would just be less confusing:
“We want to remove confusion, that’s what I’d say. As opposed to making it more accessible, we’d like to remove confusion for anyone who’s playing. What we’re trying to do now is lead you into it more… In our games or others’ games, they give you a character menu and say, ‘Who do you want to be, what powers do you want?’ [the players think,] ‘I don’t know, I haven’t played yet!’
I’d say Bethesda is walking a fine line. The difference between ‘not confusing’ and ‘easy’ isn’t very easy to delineate, but that doesn’t really matter as long as the series fans are kept happy. Whoever thinks that perfectly deep and satisfying game-play can’t come from simple controls and concepts needs to think it through. The Elder Scrolls V will be available on November 11th for HD consoles and the PC.