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Turns Out Skyrim Has Already Made Gobs of Money

Feel free to pass the wealth around, Bethesda.

I'm 30 hours into Skyrim, and can't even fathom when I'm going to be finally done with it.

One cannot understate how important the decision was to release The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion near the launch of Xbox 360, whose ensuing popularity changed the whole trajectory of Bethesda Game Studios.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim was hedging a different bet, launching an ambitious fantasy RPG not long after Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

Remember, this is the series that most other games have famously changed their release dates to avoid competing against, and Skyrim was flying head-first into the firestorm.

It worked, and parent company Zenimax Media announced today more than seven million copies of the game have been shipped worldwide (shipped, not sold), and the game’s “expected” to generate more than $450 million in sales from “launch units.”

By comparison, Modern Warfare 3 generated $400 million in just 24 hours. It’s unclear what timeline Bethesda is referring to, but it’s most likely over a several day period. Either way, it’s ridiculously impressive.

Patrick Klepek on Google+
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Posted by patrickklepek
I'm 30 hours into Skyrim, and can't even fathom when I'm going to be finally done with it.

One cannot understate how important the decision was to release The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion near the launch of Xbox 360, whose ensuing popularity changed the whole trajectory of Bethesda Game Studios.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim was hedging a different bet, launching an ambitious fantasy RPG not long after Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

Remember, this is the series that most other games have famously changed their release dates to avoid competing against, and Skyrim was flying head-first into the firestorm.

It worked, and parent company Zenimax Media announced today more than seven million copies of the game have been shipped worldwide (shipped, not sold), and the game’s “expected” to generate more than $450 million in sales from “launch units.”

By comparison, Modern Warfare 3 generated $400 million in just 24 hours. It’s unclear what timeline Bethesda is referring to, but it’s most likely over a several day period. Either way, it’s ridiculously impressive.

Staff
Edited by Sankis

I already have this and now you don't. Haw haw.

Posted by Cyrisaurus

It's already got my $60.

Edited by Brodehouse

Four hundred dollars, Pat?
 
Good edit.  XD

Edited by MooseyMcMan

$400 in 24 hours. So about 6 or seven copies then. (I kid!)

Never mind, looks like he already changed it!

Posted by xbob42

In related news, 3.5 million units sold in 48 hours! http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-11-16-skyrim-sells-over-3-5-million-in-48-hours (Not a big Eurogamer fan, but a big fan of good Skyrim news!)

Posted by aurahack

Best $60 I've spent this year. Skyrim is fucking incredible and it's great too see Bethesda rewarded for the enormous efforts they've put into the game. I shouldn't even be here typing this. I should be playing.

Edited by lockwoodx

Since Syrim's launch, friends on my steam list have accumulated over 350+ hours of playing time and a regularly see between half and a dozen people playing it nightly.

I'm still waiting for the bug fixes, mods, and dlc to be bundled. It took a year for new vegas, but there's plenty in the meantime to keep me busy.

Also, when I see big sales numbers these days I say "big woop" because there's about 20 million more gamers in the world now than a decade ago. What frightens me is as these AAA titles pull in some real digits, greedy corporate types who were never interested in games (only making money) will swarm the industry and try to take it over hostilly.

Edited by Phoenix87

Its about to make some more money, cause I'm buying it tonight.

Posted by wolf_blitzer85

Most definitely money well spent for me. These guys deserve every penny.

Posted by FinalDasa

Thats ridiculous, I made a joke before waiting in line on Thursday night that I would have liked to see the difference in people waiting on midnight for MW3 and people waiting for Skyrim. Of course I also didn't expect more than 20 or so waiting for Skyrim, I was wrong.

Now I'd really like to notice the difference because there has to be a split at some point. The same guys waiting in line for an 60 hour game couldn't be taking breaks to play a few rounds of MW3 could they? It is comforting to know that the MW3 sales won't rule the industry and something like Skyrim will have other developers thinking twice about making their 1st person shooting clone.

Online
Posted by ABritishNerd

@Sankis said:

I already have this and now you don't. Haw haw.

Screw you Sir.

Posted by frondoni

If you "cannot understate" something, that means it wasn't really all that important.

Posted by lucianotassis

I love Elder Scrolls, and I think Bethesda deserves all this success! This is the sign of more games yet to come, no doubt! :)

Posted by Winternet

I give double thumbs up to all Skyrim-is-doing-well news.

Posted by Jimbo

Stoked that this paid off for them, even with its PC problems. Would have sucked if this had been a big step down from Fallout sales. I feel like anything which shows that not all games need to have guns / linear design in order to sell big numbers is a triumph at this point.

Online
Posted by stinky

i am convinced being finished with Skyrim is a decision not an outcome of gameplay.

Posted by RedRoach

Even if you don't like Skyrim, this is fantastic news for the gaming industry as a whole. Hopefully other publishers will take note that you can be more creative and different, you don't have to be a generic 1st person shooter to be successful.

Posted by dagas

Shipped doesn't mean much. I don't doubt that it will sell but saying that it has shipped so and so just tells you how many copes they think it will sell. Many games have shipped a lot and then not sold and been placed in bargain bins. People should just stop using the term shipped and stick to sold, but since sold is always lower they won't. Just like the bogus "dynamic contrast" of 20 million:1 on TV's these days when the true contrast is maybe 1000:1.

Posted by phrosnite

I heard Skyrim has sold 3.5 million copies in 48 hours...

Posted by Superfriend

Give them more money! Seriously if there is any company out there that deserves it, it´s Bethesda. I hope they spend all the money they make on developing a new framework for TES 6. Make it BIG, triple the world building staff and make the biggest game they´ve ever done. Even if it takes them 10 years, I don´t care.

You can always release a Fallout 4 to bridge the gap.

Online
Posted by Supercancer

I made a bet with a friend that, even though I was hyped for Skyrim, MW3 would outsell Skyrim on Steam.

I lost. :(

Posted by thetrin

Skyrim almost as successful as MW3? It seems my faith in humanity has been restored.

Posted by Lunar_Aura

I hope they get sold. So far, this is is the best RPG I've played of its kind. Bethesda deserves it this time, and that's coming from a guy totally allergic to (now almost) anything they make.

Posted by Krakn3Dfx

Tempted to buy a PS3 copy in addition to my PC copy for when i want to sit on the couch and play. it's the rare game that I contemplate buying on 2 platforms, but this time i may actually do it.

Posted by Talis12

i would say that Skyrim is the COD of RPG's but Skyrim doesnt deserve to be offended like that.. im deffo happy for them because the game is a master piece

Posted by maxB

I was surprised how.many of my friends knew what it was and more surprised that they bought it

Posted by mosdl

Hear me out Bethesda - make a scifi version of Skyrim. Open rpg world set in a Deus Ex/Blade Runner universe and you can charge me anything you want.

Posted by Trauma2007

The "dude Bros" got their game and we got ours. Thank you humanity for making me think were not completely beyond hope!

Edited by TheMasterDS

I heard Bethesda murdered the high king, with its voice.

Posted by CornBREDX

Games like this only come around once every thousand years. Have to be ready for it.

On a more serious note, I am glad a good game can do well in such a harsh, over saturated market. It's so hard to find good games these days but I think this year has finally delivered on the promise of "next gen" or whatever.

That's just my opinion, but it feels like the big franchises that I prefer hit their peak this year. I think I said that before somewhere else, but meh... for once I like an elder scrolls game.

Posted by TheMasterDS

@mosdl: Watch the Prey 2 stuff from last E3. It's only being published by Bethesda, but it's exactly what you're asking for. Well, roughly anyway. Maybe a little more focused on being a bounty hunter and acrobatics than this I guess. Also no dragons.

Posted by natetodamax

@aurahack said:

Best $60 I've spent this year. Skyrim is fucking incredible and it's great too see Bethesda rewarded for the enormous efforts they've put into the game. I shouldn't even be here typing this. I should be playing.

I agree completely.

Posted by natetodamax

@TheMasterDS said:

I heard Bethesda murdered the high king, with its voice.

I used to be into game studios murdering kings with their voice, then I took an arrow to the knee.

Posted by Claude
@TheMasterDS said:

@mosdl: Watch the Prey 2 stuff from last E3. It's only being published by Bethesda, but it's exactly what you're asking for. Well, roughly anyway. Maybe a little more focused on being a bounty hunter and acrobatics than this I guess. Also no dragons.

I think Dishonored is supposed be a little like that too.
Posted by Korwin
@Voxel

@TheMasterDS said:

I heard Bethesda murdered the high king, with its voice.

I used to be into game studios murdering kings with their voice, then I took an arrow to the knee.

So you know a few game studios, am I supposed to be impressed?
Posted by MaFoLu
@Korwin said:
@Voxel

@TheMasterDS said:

I heard Bethesda murdered the high king, with its voice.

I used to be into game studios murdering kings with their voice, then I took an arrow to the knee.

So you know a few game studios, am I supposed to be impressed?
Activision, destroyed by a dragon. Hard to believe, isn't it?
Posted by BraveToaster

Most of the games released this year that I have played were let downs. I still have a few more games to finish before I make a GOTY decision, but Skyrim may be my pick.

Posted by caduceus

@Voxel said:

@TheMasterDS said:

I heard Bethesda murdered the high king, with its voice.

I used to be into game studios murdering kings with their voice, then I took an arrow to the knee.

Hilarious!

Posted by Subjugation

@Voxel said:

@TheMasterDS said:

I heard Bethesda murdered the high king, with its voice.

I used to be into game studios murdering kings with their voice, then I took an arrow to the knee.

Oh look, another wanderer come to lick my father's boots.

Posted by DarthB

Damn I really fucking wish I had the time to play this game right now. Having a kid takes a lot of time, jesus christ balls. I guess it just means I'll be getting the GOTY edition next year. Go Skyrim!!

Posted by Sjupp

@stinky said:

i am convinced being finished with Skyrim is a decision not an outcome of gameplay.

Sounds like a very sound way to put it.

Posted by MacEG

Pass the wealth around?

Posted by yinstarrunner

It really surprised me when i saw people who im sure aren't really into video games talking about going to the midnight launch of Skyrim. These are the type of casual games who only know how to play CoD and not much else. Im impressed that any single-player fantasy RPG could get such mainstream appeal these days. Im not sure if its just right place, right time with the release of Oblivion on 360, but im very happy for bethesda and very happy with skyrim as a game.

Posted by wardcleaver

@dagas said:

Shipped doesn't mean much. I don't doubt that it will sell but saying that it has shipped so and so just tells you how many copes they think it will sell. Many games have shipped a lot and then not sold and been placed in bargain bins. People should just stop using the term shipped and stick to sold, but since sold is always lower they won't. Just like the bogus "dynamic contrast" of 20 million:1 on TV's these days when the true contrast is maybe 1000:1.

This is where I am always confused. I am assuming that the retailers are not buying Skyrim, or any other video game, on consignment. Therefore, to Besthesda, shipped = sold, right?

Posted by Christoffer

Thank you, humanity. I believe in you again.

Posted by Zelyre

@Metaltron said:

@Brodehouse

Your a fucking idiot....it read $400 million.

Next time try not to "look" like a dumb ass. XD

Quoted to prevent editing. I must do what I can to preserve chuckle worthy posts.

Seriously though, there are tons of people playing this. My friends list on Steam all reads Skyrim, even into ungodly hours of the night. For ever one person playing CODMW3 multiplayer, there are 3-5 more playing Skyrim.

Posted by n8

I love fake statistics.

Posted by jasonefmonk

@thetrin: You should re-read that part of the article, Skyrim will might make with it's first production run what MW3 made in the first 24-hours.

Posted by Veektarius

@wardcleaver said:

@dagas said:

Shipped doesn't mean much. I don't doubt that it will sell but saying that it has shipped so and so just tells you how many copes they think it will sell. Many games have shipped a lot and then not sold and been placed in bargain bins. People should just stop using the term shipped and stick to sold, but since sold is always lower they won't. Just like the bogus "dynamic contrast" of 20 million:1 on TV's these days when the true contrast is maybe 1000:1.

This is where I am always confused. I am assuming that the retailers are not buying Skyrim, or any other video game, on consignment. Therefore, to Besthesda, shipped = sold, right?

Yes, you are right. The company makes money based on what's shipped. However, the total amount of money they make probably has a stronger relationship to how quickly those copies are sold to end users than to how much is shipped. After all, it's only once the shelves start getting bare that more need to be shipped.

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