We told you a few days ago that Bethesda had come up with a one of a kind quest for their fans in the lead-up to The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. The challenge was simple enough: give birth to a child on the game's release date, name them 'Dovahkiin' after the protagonist, and help yourself to an "unknown reward." Not a small thing to ask of prospective parents, but now the developer has revealed just one part of the prize, and it may have you thinking twice about adding to the family. If the child is born, and named as they have asked, then they will be blessed with a Steam key, granting them access to every Zenimax/Bethesda title. Past, Present, and Future.
Before you abandon your computer to talk your significant other into reconsidering their previous stance, we should give a little context here. If you've never heard of The Elder Scrolls, then you will likely read this story and laugh at its ridiculousness. If, however, you are familiar with one of the greatest RPG franchises in past and modern gaming, then you know just what a fantastic experience to expect from Skyrim.
Honestly, how many games can be generating this amount of buzz before any fan has seen a single second of gameplay footage?
There is no underestimating the die-hard Elder Scrolls fans, or just how well-known the franchise is to gamers around the world.
Let's make one thing clear: we sincerely doubt that anyone is going to plan a pregnancy around what will amount to a few hundred dollars worth of prizes, and give their child a name that will be making grade school a daily pain. But desire isn't the only factor that needs to be taken into account.
We should point out that it appears the publishers themselves haven't even decided what the final reward will be for 'Conception Quest' completion. They obviously are aware of how much they're asking, since the first prize they're revealing would be a dream come true to Bethesda fans.
"If anyone is seriously considering this, we’ve got a few ideas in mind for a collection of quest rewards. How’s this for a shower gift: a Steam key that will grant you, and presumably Dovahkiin him/herself, every ZeniMax/Bethesda game – past, present and future – for life. Once your child eventually achieves cognition – and grows old enough to play intense video games – we think it will agree that this key blows away a pink pleated onesie. As for the rest of the loot, we’ll leave it as a surprise."
You read that correctly, the lucky family will get access to every Bethesda/Zenimax title for the rest of their lives. In case you don't recognize just how much is implied by that statement, allow us to remind you that aside from the Elder Scrolls and Fallout 3 maker, Zenimax Media are also the proud owners of id Software, makers of Quake, Doom, and the upcoming RAGE. We don't know how much thought they've put into this so far, but you see our point.
If you're thinking what we're thinking, then they must have some big ideas to let this one slip so early. Regardless of the prize, it seems that people should be seeing this as a sweepstakes or lottery, not a marketing or cash-grab like other cases of people tattooing logos on themselves for a quick buck.
There are certainly huge fans of TES who have already named their children after characters, and are anticipating Skyrim more than any other title. Because of that, Bethesda wants to really do something special with their next hit.
Think of it this way: somewhere out there, a fan of The Elder Scrolls is hunched over their computer monitor, taking in every single detail about Skyrim that they can find. While a small addition to their family is slowly and secretly taking shape, their thoughts are completely occupied with dreams of waiting in line for the game's release, and calling in sick for a few weeks to lose themselves in the teased world of dragons, giants, and undead.
But on November 11, they won't be lined up outside GameStop - they will be at the hospital. While their friends will be Facebook-ing their delight with finally having the game in their hands, and tweeting their progression through the game's story, our fan will instead be living a life of diaper-changing and eardrum-shattering screams.
No dragons for them, just months until they will have a good night's sleep, let alone time to play a video game. Rather than have this story end so sadly, Bethesda is willing to show that they care. Give your child a name from the game series you so dearly love to prove you're a fan, and you'll never have to pay a cent for one of their games ever again.
You will have paid more than enough, and gotten the privilege of celebrating the newest entry in your own epic story alongside the game's publisher. If only other publishers would show the same level of commitment to their fans.
When you think of it that way, this kind of seems like a fantastic idea, doesn't it? There is little chance of it happening, and even if it does it will barely cost Bethesda a penny. But it could just mean the world to one family out there, and that's the whole point.
We'll find out if there is a lucky winner or not when The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is released for the Xbox 360, PC, and PS3 on November 11, 2011.
Source: Bethesda Blog