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Microsoft lawyer skips ahead to "Elder Scrolls 16" release, apparently coming in 2026

Sky-brimming over.

Artwork of the Dragonborne warrior from The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, readying their shield on a snowy mountaintop
Image credit: Bethesda Softworks

Microsoft's lawyer made a bit of a slip last night, casually stating that "The Elder Scrolls 16" will release in 2026. Needless to say, this is incorrect.

The court case between Microsoft and the FTC came to a close yesterday, after several days of testimonies, revelations and Sharpie-related blunders.

During the proceedings, Microsoft's lawyer took to the floor in a bid to clear up a bit of a misunderstanding surrounding Bethesda's Elder Scrolls series. However, in doing so, they perhaps made things a touch more confusing.

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As transcribed by The Verge, Microsoft's lawyer tried to offer some clarification between two Elder Scrolls games.

"When you were asking about Zenimax and asked [the FTC lawyer] to find a game that was most similar to Xbox, he mentioned Elder Scrolls. That is incorrect," Microsoft's lawyer began. "There are two Elder Scrolls games, one is online called Elder Scrolls Online - that is a multiplayer game, it is on PlayStation today."

Microsoft's lawyer then went on to state that the FTC's lawyer had instead been referring to "The Elder Scrolls 16", whose "projected release is 2026 as a single-player game".

Obviously, Microsoft's lawyer was referring to Elder Scroll 6, rather than 16.

However, even that 2026 date seems unlikely. After all, just last week, Xbox boss Phil Spencer stated that the latest instalment of the highly-anticipated RPG series was still "five-plus years away".

So, according to Spencer, we would be looking at a 2028 release date at the very earliest.

When further questioned directly about Elder Scrolls 6, Spencer reportedly said he "didn't even know which Microsoft platforms it'd be on", adding: "It's so far out it's hard to understand what the platforms will even be".

A final decision on the FTC vs Microsoft case is expected as early as next week.

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