An impressive Skyrim multiplayer mod enters closed beta soon, with an open beta to follow.
The eye-catching Skyrim Together mod is more than someone's pipedream - it's a functional mod that currently lets up to eight players play together in Bethesda's hugely popular fantasy game.
The mod is the work of a group of talented software engineers who have spent some time tinkering with Skyrim in order to get multiplayer working. The closed beta is for those who back the project on Patreon. The open beta launches immediately after the closed beta, which the modders said wouldn't last long in an announcement post on the Skyrim Together subreddit.
In the video, below, a group of four players explore Bruma, an area added to Skyrim as part of the popular Beyond Skyrim mod (Skyrim Together works with other Creation Kit mods). The mod appears to run smoothly and remains stable throughout. The user interface displays your co-op friends' health bars in the top-left corner of the screen. At one point, the group encounters an NPC who calls out for help as she's being attacked. You can heal friends with restoration spells, for example, and see when they level up.
There are some key limitations, however. Dragon events don't work (well, they work up to the point where the dragon lands). And certain quests, such as those quite obviously meant for just one player, probably won't work properly, either, the developers said in a post on reddit. The modders won't change quests to make them co-op friendly, but each player should be able to talk and interact with objects and NPCs in the normal way.
Skyrim fans have, as you'd expect, been quick to compare the Skyrim Together mod to The Elder Scrolls Online and the recently-released Fallout 76 - a multiplayer Fallout game that suffered an horrendous launch. Interestingly, Skyrim Together includes its own launcher because Bethesda objected to releasing the mod via the Steam Workshop, but (Bethesda is happy with the mod otherwise, according to the team).
So, if you've given up on Fallout 76 but still have faith in multiplayer in Bethesda games, perhaps it's worth giving Skyrim Together a shot.