A Thought on Mods as Patches

I was woring on an article about Skyrim when another topic came to mind, one which is inseparable from the Elder Scrolls franchise these days: mods.

Mods Are Great Except For One Thing…

In the article I’m writing I criticize some aspects of Skyrim’s gameplay. It immediately crossed my mind that most people would respond with, “Well there’s a mod that fixes that.” I take a serious issue with this attitude. More specifically, I have a certain amount of—dare I say—disgust with the notion that flaws in a game are trivially excused because the community can correct any issues with mods.

A mod that fixes a problem in a game does not excuse the game from having that problem in the first place and does not protect the game from criticism.

Please don’t misunderstand: I think mods are absolutely fantastic. My problem is not with mods themselves. It is with this common notion that community-made mods give developers a free pass on their screw ups and give them a cheap way to deflect a lot of legitimate critiquing.

Maybe I’m just being a bitter old man on the porch yelling at “those damn kids on my lawn!” Anyway—I wanted to get that off my chest before finishing my article about Skyrim in the next couple of days.

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