back to article Skyrim update makes dragons FLY BACKWARDS

The highly anticipated The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim update rolled out this week and while it has fixed a number of known bugs, players are still reporting major setbacks with the game. Developer Bethesda's update for Skyrim takes the game to version 1.2 and was supposed to fix various problems, including major lag and game …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Errr, make stuff up much?

    Patch notes, for people who would prefer actual research:

    I particularly enjoy "Fixed occasional issue where a guest would arrive to the player’s wedding dead".

    Anyway, yeah, the patch both mings and munts, and dragons are very broken.. I managed to kill a very confused one at max range with firebolts (not easy), and the corpse just floated away, rather than dropping out of the air. Boo!

    1. Martin Lyne

      Mine continued to fly around whilst technically dead. Then warped off into a mountain. I chased it to find it back at half health. "Killed" it again. If flew backwards at about Mach 1 and never returned.

      Dragons were fine for me last week.

      (PC, Steam version here)

  2. DrXym Silver badge

    Hoping they have it by fixed by XMas

    I have a copy but strictly speaking it's a Christmas present so it's still in its wrap and I'm making do with Fallout New Vegas for the time being.

  3. hexx

    maybe it's a feature, dragon mk2

  4. David Webb

    It's a great game, it's just a shame Beth suck at supporting their games (they never fixed major bugs in Oblivion for instance the vampire bug - PS3) so rely on their fans to sort out the issues, they claim it's a new engine, which is a lie, try using a Xonar soundcard on Oblivion/Fallout and you'll get CTD's, the same CTD's happen in Skyrim.

    I dunno, I want to support the company because I enjoy the games, but on the other hand, should I really support a company that doesn't support it's loyal fanbase properly?

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    One word

    Boo Hoo!!!!

    1. Jonathan 10

      But isn't that two words?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    You know a game is BIG when...

    ....a patch bug makes headlines. Love it, moar plz!

  7. Trygve Henriksen


    Reminds me of all the bugfixes for TES: Arena... and every other TES title, too, when I think about it.

    Of course, back in the days of Arena, we had to manually download and apply the patches, so I guess there has been some progress...

  8. Alex C

    Cheers for the article

    I've bought this but won't bother to install it till it's stable - something experience has taught us with Bethesda releases is that they usually take a while to work through the bugs.

    Articles like this are very helpful - thanks.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I would suggest the very least, backing up some pre-patch save files to another directory, just in case.

    The game has a lot of very weird broken things going on at the mo, with dragons, textures, resistances, and Bob-knows-what else.

    Given how epic it all is, and how many hours it eats, you might not want to start again, if it turns out that one of the problems affects save files- be paranoid.

    Me, I am going to stop playing until the patch is pulled/replaced, as the game (which used to run in a frame in Ultra mode for me) runs and looks like crap now. I will wait until it's restored to its full glory, as it's a whole lot of fun, and I don't want to play a half arsed version of such a lovely game.

  10. BristolBachelor Gold badge
    Thumb Up

    dragons FLY BACKWARDS

    Is that ALL dragons, or only the occasional runt of a swamp dragon? (My thanks go to Errol and Terry Pratchett)

    1. Caltharian

      Errol didnt fly backwards, he rearranged his plumbing and flamed backwards to become the first jet propelled Dragon!

      1. BristolBachelor Gold badge

        So jet propelled things do not fly?

        I hope you don't tell that to the airplanes; I shudder to think what would happen once their illusions are shattered /

  11. JonP


    A few bugs in a game this complex are probably to be expected, but when the patch breaks stuff too it's not so good - they should've spent an extra week making the patch right (or at least not wrong). Yes people were moaning, but a week wouldn't make much difference - then again it's nearly xmas so maybe that had something to do with it...

    Anyway, it is a great game (OK the NPC AI could be better, but...) and to be fair i've hardly noticed any problems with my copy (xbox version) - think it's maybe frozen a handful of times over, well, quite a few hours of play.

  12. LuMan

    Yeah, but in all fairness....

    ...dragons aren't real. They're mythical beings. Nobody *really* knows how they fly. Maybe these dragons are well smart and have perfected the reverse-method of dodging arrows. I know that if I'd invented dragons I'd have 'em flying sideways as well. And upside down. Just for the hell of it!

    1. Martin Lyne

      These ones clearly aren't superior. I frequently find them flying into trees/mountains, making no progress. Seems direction facing and velocity are not linked in the AI. So it thinks "I'm flying east!" but its body actually makes it fly west.

      When they die they fly off at warp speed to the horizon too. If it weren't such a brilliant game otherwise then, strangely, I wouldn't mind so much. But being brought our of immersion to try to aim an arrow directly in the to rapidly approaching rectum of a flying, fire-breathing reptile..

  13. Chad H.
    IT Angle

    But the big question is...

    Is the Main Quest now completable?

    Bugs that prevent the completion of the MQ (getting Esbern, and the first combination puzzle in the final temple) are inexcusable - especially the final temple "Right combination as displayed in the temple doesnt work" one - thats not even a conflict, just its sloppy.

  14. Graham Marsden

    I'm flying backwards for Xmas...

    ... Across the Irish Sea...

    (With apologies to Spike Milligan!)

  15. Not_The_Droids

    Good to know...

    My son's birthday is tomorrow, he's getting Skyrim (PC version) - and a new video card. Is the PC version OK to patch, or should we hold off on patching it?

    Yellow fizzy drink, because he's also getting an 8-pack of Mountain Dew for his video gaming marathon tomorrow night.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      re: "Good to know..."

      A lot of the really nasty problems are on the PC version. Check out the official forums:

      ..for more details.

    2. Crofty616

      I've been playing it every spare minute i have on the PC, and havent really come across anything game breaking, ive had a few crash to desktops, and now quicksave every 5 minutes out of fear, but other than that its worked pretty much perfectly for me (bug wise)!

  16. Goat Jam

    The worst thing is

    that you can't play the game without the patch because Steam insists on installing it and won't start the game 'til you do.


  17. FrankAlphaXII Silver badge

    At least its not Fallout: New Vegas. Even with the patches the game's still bugged like crazy. Daggerfall, Morrowind, Oblivion, and Fallout 3 at least fixed most of the issues by about the 2nd or 3rd patch.

    And as much as I love Bethesda, they can't blame New Vegas' issues on the engine. Creation, Skyrim's engine may be "new", but its still based on Gamebryo. And quite a few other games use it, Cryptic's Star Trek Online runs on Gamebryo as does Atlus' "Catherine" and neither have big issues with bugs. Im not saying they're bug free, but their QA really really needs improvement. How did a tester, much less an entire QA team NOT see the dragons flying backward, as well as broken spells and broken enchantments while they were testing the patch?

    Its Bethesda's QA team (yet again) needing serious help. Their QA lead needs more people, when you only have about 50-100 Professional Testers working on a codebase as big as these games are you're bound to run into problems.

    1. scarshapedstar

      Offline mode?

      I'm already patched and happy with the results (except I've been forced to switch to default button mapping but I've already adapted) but it seems like starting Steam offline should do the job.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      You can

      There is a way to go back to 1.1 but that requires STEAM to stay in offline mode until a new patch/update comes out, or otherwise it will update the game to 1.2 again.

      Here are instructions how to go back to 1.1 on STEAM:

    3. Ian Yates

      Too late now, but if you use Steam in off-line mode, it doesn't force the patches on you.

      This is a reasonably hack for single-player games, but obviously won't work for online ones (though, arguably, everyone online needs to run the same version for fairness).

      I'm waiting to buy Skyrim in the new year - principally because that's when my 3D monitor arrives, but also because historically Bethesda and v1.x are not a good mix.

      I had far too many stress moments where Oblivion crashed and saves wouldn't load.

  18. Eric Hood

    Installed to 360. Textures fixed. At least things look better now. Sadly did not find any backwards dragons. Kinda disappointed. I was hoping to see the look on its face when it tried to take a dump.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Made me smile. Whats with all the downvotes in this thread?

  19. JP19

    par for the course

    Buggy game released before it was ready gets buggy patch released before it was ready.

    Sadly nothing new here - move along.

  20. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    Honestly people, you should really know how it works by now

    All you Skyrim players are nothing but beta testers.

    I'll check out the game in a year or two, when Bethesda has got its act together and the major bugs have been ironed out.

    And don't tell me I'm exaggerating - how long did it take to get Baldur's Gate working properly ?


  21. Dadz

    dragon physics

    One dragon near the hot springs refused to come down and fight - even after I hit it with a fireball scroll. So, I looted the treasure chest it was supposed to protect, and carried on. It insisted on hovering, which is unrealistic; the energy required to maintain a hover is too great. According to this Dragon Physics article dragons attack villages mostly to eat their wooden buildings.

    The dragons in Skyrim are a bit bigger than the estimate provided; additionally, the calculations should be done by an expert in ornithopter physics.

  22. Dick Emery

    Don't let Steam update

    Run the game once installed from the tesv.exe then get yourself off to and install some of thee mods that fix a lot of issues (including the 2GB limit on memory). If you run it from SkyrimLauncher.exe initially make sure you are not connected to the internet just to run the setup options. Then from then on run either the tesv.exe file or one of the modded launchers.

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