oblivion game of the year edition skyrim v
"It was, like, completely blue sky. [Executive director] Todd [Howard] said, 'Sit down, and draw a bunch of cool weird s***, and we'll look at it and decide what's worthwhile, and what's really stupid, and we'll take it from there. We want bad-assery. Vikings versus Conan, classic Frank Frazetta, and it's going to be set in Skyrim, and this is a place that's going to be a lot more brutal and gritty: draw a bunch of stuff." Few games do atmosphere like The Elder Scrolls. Sure, you come for the elf bothering and swinging axes into orc's faces but you stay because the place feels so real - another world to live another life in.
Unfortunately, much of this initial concept art ended up on the cutting room floor, with Adamowicz estimating that "probably about 90% of that [early work] didn't get used." Skyrim's lead artist Matt Carofano uses the podcast to explain how Skyrim's visual style will be very different to that of other Elder Scrolls titles:
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