Free Skyrim Dawnguard beta highlights Bethesda as industry’s best?

By Posted 4 Jun 2012, 09:50

Following on from the amazing Dawnguard gameplay trailer for Skyrim that Bethesda unveiled recently, the company has now revealed that a beta test program will be available, giving select members the chance to preview Dawnguard before it releases first on Xbox 360 this Summer.

Firstly, if you haven’t seen the Dawnguard trailer, you really should watch it back again here. Basically there is going to be a massive new questline for the Dawnguard, a group of vampire hunters, or the vampire species themselves.

As most of you are aware, Dawnguard is going to be a timed-exclusive on the Xbox 360, meaning that Xbox 360 players will be able to play the new content a month early before the DLC releases on PS3 and PC. If that wasn’t good enough news for Xbox 360 owners, the just-announced beta gives Xbox 360 an even earlier opportunity to play Dawnguard, with one exciting twist.

Unlike any other console betas that come out, Bethesda has announced that those selected are essentially getting a free copy of Dawnguard, saving them 1600 Microsoft points in the process. We’re not sure about you, but that is some generosity there from Bethesda and a fantastic way of rewarding players for their help in testing the unreleased new material.

Obviously every single Skyrim player on Xbox 360 is going to be interested in this, so there is going to be a lot of disappointed users when they find out they didn’t get in. To be in with a shot, all you have to do is fill out Bethesda’s application form on the Dawnguard beta website here. You’ll be asked some general questions, such as your total playtime, favorite class, what type of Xbox 360 console you are playing on, and so on.

Once you’ve completed the form, Bethesda has said that you’ll be notified by email if you have been selected, although there’s no timeline on when they’ll be announcing the winners. We can’t remember the last time that a beta program resulted in the content becoming free for those who tested the game. Does this mean that we’ll get a beta for each of the DLC expansion packs that Bethesda release for Skyrim, following the same pattern? Despite the initial problems involving Skyrim at launch, it just goes to show why so many people rate Bethesda so highly as a developer and perhaps an indication why Bethesda was chosen as the Studio of the Year in the 2011 VGAs.

How happy will you be if you find a reply from Bethesda in your inbox with a download code for Dawnguard? Can you remember the last time that a developer announced a gesture like this for beta testers?

  • guest

    Football Manager gives a free copy of their game to all of their (many) volunteer researchers. Only similar example I can think of

  • RacistPenisEater

    I randomly found a beta test code for GRFS in my inbox. I found it too late though. :(

  • Bdwilson97

    I would piss myself if I found that e-mail in my inbox. I so hope I get chosen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 81ay

    Consoles users have been getting demo’s to show what state their product is in before they choose to purchase for years! As good as Skyrim is, it was as buggy as anything to the point it was unplayable for many and still is pretty broken is in many aspects even now. 

    Forgive me if I don’t see this as unprecedented and saintly as the author. 

    Don’t get me wrong though, Skyrim is amazing as I am sure DawnGuard will be but they should have done this in the first place and making them out to be hero’s for doing this isn’t right when many developers allow gamers to test games from the start. 

  • Wolfgan

    what?! skyrim wasn’t as buggy as many other games that don’t even serve you with such a freedom, choices and a great action combat. there were little things which they fixed well and pretty fast.