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Todd Howard: Games as a service 'doesn't mark the future'

"Anyone who has ever said 'this is the future and this part of gaming is dead' has been proven wrong every single time."

Bethesda Game Studios head Todd Howard isn't convinced we're seeing the end of single-player gaming as we know it.

Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz at GameLab in Barcelona, Howard said the perceived shift away from narrative-driven, lone wolf efforts "doesn't mark the future" for Bethesda, and seemed unconvinced by those who feel brave enough to pronounce single-player games dead in the water. 

Some will no doubt disagree, and will point towards the growing number of 'games as a service' titles as evidence to the contrary. 

Indeed, just yesterday we saw Ubisoft talk about its own decision to move away from "finite" experiences, with a view to keeping players engaged for longer. 

Meanwhile, Bethesda has also added some fuel of its own to the fire, with the studio's next release Fallout 76 being unveiled as shared-world survival title. Howard, though, doesn't think fans should read too much into the studio's purported multiplayer pivot.

"Corporately we've done a mix; people forget sometimes. Elder Scrolls Online is one of the biggest online games in the world, we have Fallout Shelter which we keep updating, and Elder Scrolls: Legends," said Howard. 

"Anyone who has ever said 'this is the future and this part of gaming is dead' has been proven wrong every single time. We like to try it all. For a long time we wanted to try a multiplayer game and we had this idea. We shouldn't be afraid. We should try it."

Howard's sentiments have been echoed by other notable figures, with Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick also refuting the notion that single-player is going the way of the dodo. 

You can hear more from Howard by checking out the full interview over at GamesIndustry.biz.

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