We've jokingly told people that – come 11/11/11 – Skyrim is going to devour the remainder of our mortal years. We're afraid, though, that we may have meant it without, you know, meaning to. See, in addition to the harrowing prospect of “unlimited dragons,” Bethesda's latest biggie-sized slice of role-playing nirvana is coming packed with a never-ending supply of procedurally generated quests.
“The vibe of the game is that it’s something that you can play forever,” Elder Scrolls mastermind Todd Howard told Wired.
In short, the game's Radiant Quest system will be able to put together an endless supply of quests based on numerous factors like location, nearby characters, and your status with factions like The Thieves Guild or The Dark Brotherhood.
Granted, the format for these procedural quests sounds like a fairly rote “Kill X number of monsters” or “Collect X number of disgusting giant spider legs without attempting to crush your monitor with a shoe” type of affair. However, Howard also added that these quests will purposefully send you off the beaten path, so you'll likely discover more than just a roving herd of twitchy, eight-legged murder machines.
In that respect, he noted, Skyrim's inherited a healthy dose of Fallout 3's exploratory DNA, which is pretty much the cherry atop a sundae the size of Mt. Everest for us. Speaking of, want to know something else Skyrim-related that feels absolutely endless? The remaining 24-hour wait until we can friggin' play it. Arrrrrghgghghg.