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One of the funniest moments of E3 2018 came when Todd Howard announced during the Bethesda showcase that Skyrim was launching on yet another platform: Alexa. It had a trailer and everything, and pretty much everyone applauded the developer's willingness to poke fun at themselves with something so ridiculous. Well, it turns out the joke is on us. Skyrim: Very Special Edition is available now, and apparently it's actually a pretty great experience.
We're big fans of developers being willing to have a bit of fun at their own expense. Skyrim launched back in 2011 for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 and, since then, it's been ported in one form or another to just about every platform imaginable. Back at E3 2017, Bethesda announced that the game was also coming to the Nintendo Switch and PlayStation VR, causing even more good-natured rumbling about what platform could possibly come next.
Then, at this year's E3 showcase, Todd Howard revealed Skyrim: Very Special Edition, a version of the game that runs on Alexa courtesy of voice commands. The trailer, which everyone assumed was a joke, even had a great performance from Keegan-Michael Key, of Key & Peele fame. In the trailer, Alexa would explain the situation at hand and Key would speak commands such as "I eat all of the cheese," "drink a potion" or even various dragon shouts. It was a fun goof, and even ended with a nod to the next platform Skyrim will appear on: smart fridges.
While that last bit was presumably a joke -- though now we're not sure about anything -- it turns out the other announcement concerning Skyrim on Alexa was legitimate. The game, which is available on any Android device capable of loading the Alexa app, can be enabled and played right this very minute. Once the game is loaded, all you have to do is say, "Alexa, open Skyrim" to get the ball rolling. From there, it sounds like the instructions are pretty intuitive, but we imagine experimentation will be a big part of the fun.
To be clear, all of this is still being done with tongue firmly planted in cheek. We haven't had an opportunity to boot up this latest version of Skyrim ourselves but, based on what we're seeing around social media, the scenarios are lighthearted and, like the original trailer, the app pokes fun at Skyrim in general.
Even the description for the game is pretty humorous, including features such as "encounter people who constantly need your help," "guard your knees against arrows," "fatally harm mudcrabs," "walk straight up a mountain instead of going around" and, of course, "die."
We were already on board with Howard's E3 joke but, since they had actually made this wonderfully silly game, we're starting to think the guy might just be a mad genius.