Skyrim 1.5 update on PS3 has major water freezing problem

By Alan Ng - Apr 6, 2012

We finally have some good news for console players. The long awaited 1.5 patch update for The Elder Scrolls V is now available for the Xbox 360 and PS3 after debuting on PC earlier this week.

However, we already have confirmation that the patch is causing some problems on the PS3 version, with even Bethesda admitting that there is a freezing glitch in the game which now occurs whenever a player enters water.

After such a long period of time for the patch to come out, you would have thought that these things would be tested, but unfortunately that isn’t the case. It isn’t a sporadic issue either – the moment you step foot in water after installing patch 1.5, your game will freeze up requiring a hard reset of the PS3.

Luckily, there does appear to be an immediate workaround to the problem. Bethesda has advised all players to clear their game data for Skyrim by going to the game utility section of the XMB. When you reboot Skyrim after this change, the game will reinstall and it should fix the problem for you.

As for the new changes that you can expect to see in the new update, Bethesda has revealed that console players will now be able to view a cinematic kill camera for projectile weapons and spells. There are also some brand new animations and kill moves when using melee weapons, so those of you who prefer to melee your way out of trouble should appreciate these new features.

You can read the full changelog here. If you have noticed the water freezing problem as well on patch 1.5, let us know if you managed to fix the game, or if you’re still having problems.

Unfortunately, there’s still no word on DLC but we guess they are still working on it. Give us your thoughts on the lack of console DLC – six months after release.

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Also See: Bethesda E3 2017 event date with games list hype

  • Zalily

    I went to Game Data Utility, arrowed down to Skyrim, pressed green triangle, pressed delete, pressed yes. But I do not see where I can delete my Game Updates? Help. Because just deleting the Game Data did not solve my water freezing issue.

  • Dale

    Deleted my game files, but kept my save files. After redownloading everything, my manual save files got overwritten by Auto-save files, which happen to have half of the world deleted from it! Half of the world is an endless pit, and the other half are cities without floors. Thanks Bethesda.

  • CipherX

    Woop! Just fixed mine, Real easy fix…didn’t have to do half the steps listed, just went to the game data area and deleted the patch, reopened skyrim and re-installed patch…then played right form there. No more water crashes.

  • Gato620

    God hope this works ive put so much effort in to this game, and this glitch is driving me nuts. Lvl 21 archer, im doing the thiefs guild and have no choice but to take this route.

  • SkyrimFan

    thanks to the helpful advice on here i went to game utility, deleted the update file along with the game date file (not my saved game btw since i was up to level 45 and not willing to sacrifice many weeks of work), reinstalled the patch and the game data and it now it no longer freezes when i go underwater.

    • billnye

       this worked for me also

  • Thomas Paal

    I Deleted the Skyrim itself and the update file like you said, started skyrim, downloaded the game, BUT NO UPDATE, when i press Continue it says: This saved game was created on a later version of skyrim. Please download any updates. So my problem is that it won´t install the updates when i start skyrim.

  • Mend0469

    Hi.  I was experiencing the same PS3 water freezing issues as everyone else.  As per the recommended fix, I deleted both my game data and upadate data and re-booted downloading the game files and update again.  The water freezing was certainly fixed and the new water graphics are enjoyable, but I have now experienced other freezing issues in simple game scenarios; choosing options in dialogues mostly.  I will try to delete and re-load one more time.  But seriously, why don’t production teams test anymore, its ridiculous! 

  • Dimike7sep

    after weeks of skyrim deprivation, thinking I couldn’t swim because of a scratch on the disc I found THIS!
    screw rebound battlefield 3,
    skyrim :I’M BACK!!

  • Setesh Js

    Ok so I deleted the game data and update and now when it starts the install it gets to 18% and stops.

  • Fixed by deleting the update folder.  Thank you!!

  • Cheeks_21

    You really think they would make sure the updates work properly first before sending it out.

  • guest

    deleting the update and reinstalling helped me. thank you! i think they completely reformatted the water and thats why there was such an issue. before this update and also in oblivion when entering the water there would be a small strip in which the player could see the debris and vegetation underwater clearly. in the patch there is alot more blur and no longer that gap, and whenever it froze for me i would find myself looking into the water with no blur at all 

  • Drew Designer

    I don’t want to clear my game data because I’ll lse all of the work I’ve done (I’m at level 44). That’s not an immediate workaround for me.

    • Armchair

      You seem to have completley missed the point

      • VectaSIgma

        No, he did not miss the point, Armchair. There are plenty of players that feel the same way as he does..including myself. That’s not just same basic solution or workaround. That’s a huge letdown for anyone that has put days of play into their character.

        • Omartheman42

           Drew and Vecta game data is not the same as save data.  you can keep your character, you are suppose to delete the initial install and and updates not your character save. Those two files are completely separate.

    • Pyrosam001

      you dont need to erase your saved game… its all just a reboot of the game install..

    • Blade_jaam

      U delete de game in the carpet but no your progres read carefuly

  • Guest

    For PS3 Consoles (Underwater problem)
    1. Start Console2. Go to Game Icon3. Go to “Game Data Utility”4. Delete Update File for Skyrim5. Turn off PS36. Turn PS3 back on7. Start Skyrim8. Reinstall 1.05 update when it asks you to9. Play Skyrim
    All I did was delete the update and reinstall it. Then I tested it by using Whirlwind Sprint out of the Mage’s College and into the water below. Worked perfectly. This might take more then one attempt, but I got it on my first try. Thought people might like to know there is a slightly faster way of doing this rather then having to reinstall the entire Skyrim game back onto their PS3. Hope this helps.

    • Patryk1098

      I’ve confirmed that this works. It’s a hell of a lot faster than deleting the +4GB game data and re-installing. You download a 101MB patch, install it, and everything works great. Also; you don’t need to restart the PS3. You can delete, start, download, install, and play immediately.

  • Colinmccauley

    For PS3 Consoles (Underwater problem)

    1. Start Console
    2. Go to Game Icon
    3. Go to “Game Data Utility”
    4. Delete Update File for Skyrim
    5. Turn off PS3
    6. Turn PS3 back on
    7. Start Skyrim
    8. Reinstall 1.05 update when it asks you to
    9. Play Skyrim

    All I did was delete the update and reinstall it. Then I tested it by using Whirlwind Sprint out of the Mage’s College and into the water below. Worked perfectly. This might take more then one attempt, but I got it on my first try. Thought people might like to know there is a slightly faster way of doing this rather then having to reinstall the entire Skyrim game back onto their PS3. Hope this helps.

    • Onenewmoon

       It worked! I should have looked up how to fix this issue when it started lol

    • knut

      Where and how do I find ” game data utility”?

  • idcam

    i reformatted my whole ps3 because i thought it was my after market hdd so i put my old smaller one back in :/ but at least it works now

    • Ismaelmezapsn

      wow lol

  • MiranaStNymph

    I did delete the update & the data which worked but before that I found that if you looked up- not in the water itself (I’m thinking the graphics might be too high) that you can get thru the water unfrozen.

  • Kellypenny1

    ok help please deleted the 1.5 then reloaded it……. now all I do is fall  and die when the game loads I cannot not play at all now HELPPPPPPPPPP

    • Alexarr121

       get rid of all the game data and make a new person

  • Ugh I’m having the freezing issue… every five minutes or so…

    • The Original Bogmonkey

      i had to unistall then reinstall the patch 3 times before i had any joy with it. Mow it doesn’t freeze on me at all. Give it another go and hopefully it works for you. (fingers crossed) 

    • Osyrus8888


      Go into game data utility delete both skyrim and skyrim
      update data than reinstall it worked for me mine is working perfect now with
      one try

  • Richard

    Then reinstalled the update

  • Richard

    I only deleted the update and not the game data and it worked

  • Bradley Leonard

    reloading as per instruction worked for me. still didnt bring belethor back from the dead and I would love to buy stuff from his shop

  • Sarah_the_stubborn

    Still glitching after reinstalling

  • Archer

    OK! I deleted both the game data and the update file and reinstalled again. This time it seems to have worked. Water is not causing a freeze problem. Hope it stays that way. Try the fix more than once if it doesn’t work the first time. I will not be downloading anymore updates until I’m certain it is functioning correctly .

  • TheDoug

    Piece of cake. In the PS3 menu system went to ‘Game’, ‘Game Data Utility’ (not saved game data utility), deleted Skyrim entries (I had 2), rebooted (not 100% sure full system reboot was necessary). Next time in I did and update and Skyrim reinstall and done. No loss or game progress and able to swim once again.

  • malpal_skyrimgirl

    I love how im in the depths of rabdthar and the only way for me to continue is to fix the unmoving gears by going underwater in the middle of the room. :/
    come on bethesda, im sure we can all wait an extra week for an update if it means you CHECK your work before releaseing it to the public, you just make yourselves look incompetant.
    I love skyrim and oblivion, but this glitchy bs doesnt make the company look very good at all.
    tried the fix, still didnt work 🙁
    nice try, maybe youll get a patch for the patch. -_-

  • Bill

    Works perfectly

  • Devil

    The recommended fix worked for me…

  • Thewalt72

    I know the fix, go into options and turn off GTA 3 mode, then you’ll be able to swim

    • Zalily

      Options – in the game?

  • Clstauffer

    Im still experiencing the freezing when I’m in water. This dreaming SUCKS!

  • Archer

    I tried the re-install game data fix. It still freezes when entering the water.

  • Deleted only the update 1.5 then redownloaded it works great for  now. If that doesn’t work wait another 5 months and they will fix it. What are they going to do with this game? Seriously 6 months no DLC.

    I had forgotten all about DLC for this game lol. Skyrim DLC whats that? Seriously though It’s only a matter of time and when I ask what are they going to do with this game what I really mean is can it be more? More than just a game you play then put away. It’s Massive and provides a world that could be endlessly updated for years and years. Why scrap it and move on when you can just plug in some new dungeons and remap the terrain ever so often. Open some new areas by opening previously closed or hidden passages. Continuously update and upgrade the towns so they grow over time. Would be cool to watch the walls of Whiterun being repaired and new parts of the town being added.

    Love the game HATE the problems. It’s a love hate relationship always has been always will be.

    • Was so glad to hear it wasn’t just me.  Love everything about this game and can even deal with a few bugs along the way but can a girl get some extra perks?  If you think it takes forever for a girl to get dressed to go out, you can imagine how hard it is to choose a perk knowing in the end I won’t get to have all of the ones I want. 🙂  I promise not to complain about the problems if I can get a few extra perks with the next update.  Haha

  • Thanks for the info. The reinstall of game data seems to have worked for me. I didn’t do extensive testing though, just a quick test. Wish I saw this yesterday before hard booting my PS3 a dozen times to get through a water section. Funny that the game felt perfected to me on 1.4, and ran for hours on end without an issue.

    • 6yrsps3

       how can i delete or reinstall update in ps3 😀 never tried before

      • Sed8ed

         Go into your Game Data and Uninstall both the Update and the Game Data.  When finished reboot your ps3 and it will reinstall it automatically. It takes a while but it worked great for me… So far.

  • Finalferrin

     the reinstall worked for me

  • Dispicable Me

    Just want to say I really wish I would have looked at this yesterday. I found that you can get in water if you go backwards. LOL. That was my work around. This morning I got up with determination and started going through old saved data to see if that fixed the problem. When I didn’t I came online. BTW, totally fixed the problem =)

    • rndm

      coolworks backwards

  • Guest

    still having the freezing problem :((

  • Jagrz

    wish i had read this before i deleted my saved games. Oh well i had already beaten the game twice wouldnt mind starting over with a new race and different play style/perks

  • MClown69

    I got ps3 and I’ve never really had any freezing problems that crippled my game play and now I read about this water lag so I get on and head to the nearest river! I jump in and no freeze ups! I swam for about 15 minutes and got out and jumped back in. I started a fight with a person and jumped in. No freeze at all? Hope it stays that way. I guess I am lucky so far! Still didn’t see a kill cam tho. The water looked kinda blurry now but you can see outside mountains and all when you are underwater. Kinda cool. also kinda notice the currents move swifter.

  • Ripper398

    The other glitch is when you kill a dragon, you won’t absorb it. It just lays there like a… Well.. A dead dragon.

  • Nuck Chorris

    Hey guy’s just wondering; am i the only person who hasn’t seen a dragon since 1.4?

    Is it that i’m so bad ass they all avoid me? Or has Bethesda forsaken their usual non-glitchy selves to destroy my experience?
    Ahhh i still can’t stop playing it though :L

  • Jander93

    The game reinstall fix works.

  • Guest

    Deleted skyrim and skyrim update from the game data utility and reinstalled.  Haven’t had any system freezes since reinstall.

  • Hamsterjam911

    glad i pirated this before buying….. i’ll play the pirated version  for now

    • I hope you get sued into oblivion and your whole life is ruined.

      I pirate stuff, too. But Bethesda deserves to get paid for this. Every game has glitches, that’s no excuse.

      • Copernicus

        Deserve to get paid? They robbed us blind of our money! We should start a class action lawsuit! They profited on a game that we were under the impression that would actually work! That to me is fraud! Blah, I remember games last gen that never had these huge glaring problems…You could play all day without a hitch, but nowadays…you can’t play a game for more than 2 hours without it crashing or having game ending/breaking bugs, bugs, and more bugs! It’s not slander, because it’s true! You can’t polish a turd, and these patch failure rates are proof of that! ;p   

  • guest

    Reinstalling didn’t fix it for me….thanks Bethesda. Real good quality game.

    • melkor

      Same here….this is game of the year?

      • Rr1bob99

        I know right? Fix a game before you release it!

        • Easy enough to say. But not feasible with a game like this. This is no Uncharted or Assassins Creed. Wonderful games, but so, so limited — easy to eliminate the vast majority of bugs before release in those games because there’s only so much you can DO in the game. Skyrim, as a massive, free-roaming, open world sandbox with tons of content and features, is impossible to perfect with a team of QA testers. At least, if we want the dev time to clock in at under 20 years. And I certainly didn’t want to wait 20 years. I actually never had a big bug until this water thing. And deleting Game Data and Update Data absolutely fixed it (don’t worry guys, it doesn’t delete your save files).

          If Uncharted had every major level connected to every other level at the same time for the entire game, expanded that game world’s size by thirty-fold, added 40,000 more potential lines of dialogue, added another hundred quests as well as interior locations, let you collect thousands of items, forever kept track of where you drop/sell those items, allowed a thousand variations for the customisation of Nate and saved every detail of your Nate’s effect on the world, it would be just as buggy.

          Skyrim is an amazing accomplishment and the main game I’ve been playing for about half a year, now. It absolutely deserves GotY.

        • Wayne McDermott

          You make a fair point regarding the size and depth of the game, but still, this seems like a sort of bug that a test suite should have captured? An article on the tools and techniques and what went wrong in this instance would be interesting.

  • Carrera_757

    It works, delete the GAME DATA of Skyrim AND the Skyrim UPDATE in the same folder. Reboot Skyrim, update, reinstall. Jump in water. Enjoy.

  • CJA

    How do I reinstall without losing my saved game? Sounds risky, or am I just an idiot? Nevertheless, big f**k up on bethesda’s part…

    • Nuck Chorris

      Deleting data from files ‘Game Data Utility’ is not the same as deleting individual game saves, so it will not affect your game saves or progress throughout.

  • liamstan10

    I am the only one that didn’t actually have this issue at all? I’ve been in the water countless times after the patch and my game is fine. Otherwise, I thought the patch was actually pretty good, hasn’t broke anything else so far…

    • Rr1bob99

      You updated a bit later I guess. They fixed it pretty quick. Very surprisingly.

    • tallguy199

      I thought I was the only one too. Heard about the freeze and decided to see if i had the problem. I was able to go for a swim and see the the new under water texture without the game so much as lagging. On ps3, no freeze.

  • Isaac Sharman

    The problem solver they suggested does not work. Still froze up in water, and now one of my save files are corrupted.

  • freeze indeed

  • Dylanbell_59

    Re-installed and game still freezes and really “bugs” me that they went for looks instead of functionality good work Bethesda avoid doing any hard work by distracting us with more bull that will just freeze up the game 😀 love getting ripped off O_O

  • Chrome_0001

    My games freezes when entering the water and it is NOT fixed by re-installing the game data. And Farkas is still following me around wanting to kill a non existent dragon.

    • Nuck Chorris

      Re-install both the update and game data, i would explain but i’m currently rendered incapable of doing so due to the need to feed my toilet.

  • Emultion

    YES!! It works now… and everything looks a little different; I’m happy now.

    • Breast of the best

      I have to admit, i myself have noticed the graphical improvements recently, and they do add immersion and beauty to the game, they only stood out for me though because i haven’t played much recently.

  • Emultion

    Driving me crazy!!!!! Waiting for it to re-install right now… I’m trying to be hopefull.

  • Jdh20

    hopefully the fix will work drove me BSC today

    • NgTurbo


      • Bat S*** Crazy perhaps?

  • CDavis13

    With all of the (still) major issues on the ps3, why the f*ck did they worry about the water? Stop my game from frequently locking up. Stop trees & people from disappearing or suddenly appearing right in front of me. When all of the other problems are fixed, THEN you worry about how it looks when you enter the water. That was one of the few things that didn’t cause a problem….so they tried to fix it. Nice job Bethesda. Anybody working there not brain dead?

    • Jander93

       I have no doubt every single person there has more brain power geared toward making games than you do.  If you want a perfect game, get the education and make one yourself. Until you do that, don’t talk about what you can’t know.

      • Please try this @ home

        Here, here… the way ppl with no skill of creativity complain when software does not work or they want it all for free so they can sit on there keistersplaying because they are a. Unemployed or b. Still in high school….. have a go at development and see what it involves, then u may not complain so much about the occasional bug or having to buy a game…… FO3, Skyrim, Elder Scrolls…. BRILLIANT….keep up the great work BTHSDA.

        • mike vick 7#

          wow! i didnt know you had to be at high school or unemployed to complain when a game you spend your hard earned money on (well i did anyway) comes out with an update you have to download that freezes the game whenever you go in water and comes up with a way to fix it that doesnt work on all p3s… i can appreciate that skyrim is by very far the boldest game ever made but freezing every time you touch water? CMON thats just stupid.. Now im am left in a very awkward position of maybe flying or super jumping to the fuckin boat where my mission is… has been like this for awhile and frankly ive just gotten sick of it… so let the man complain cos i no exsactley where hes coming from…

        • Rr1bob99

          I agree completely. 

      • Rr1bob99

        He wasn’t saying he knew better. He was just expecting a game he bought to actually work. Is that too much to ask?

  • Sed8ed

    Do we clear/delete all Skyrm data from the “Game Data Utility” (GDU) and the “Saved Data Utility” or just the “Update File” in the GDU?  What is the “XMB”?  Sorry, don’t know the jargon.

    • Guest

       It’s an acronym for  Cross Media Bar  (X being the cross)  So it’s Xross Media Bar.   What it is, is the menu when you are scrolling from PSN to Game to Video, etc.  For lack of a better term, your desktop on the PS3.  =3

    • Connorzor

      In the same section as saved data utility there will be a folder for game data utility, just delete the game data for skyrim and skyrim update. Sttart skyrim and it should update and reinstall the game data.

    • tracey

      delete everything except saved games