Fallout 4, Skyrim mod support called off on PS4, citing problems with Sony
Bethesda games -- particularly the Fallout and Elder Scrolls series -- are beloved in large part because of the thriving mod scene which surrounds them. Out of the box, these games are like half-constructed playsets, asking for talented fans to add to them in new and unexpected ways. Fans have created custom costumes, overhauled skins and textures, new 3D models, even entirely new maps and questlines. That's what makes Bethesda games worth playing!
Unfortunately, mod support is generally restricted to the PC version of the game. Bethesda has started to change this, opening mod support for Fallout 4 and the upcoming The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim Special Edition on Xbox One. The same support was supposed to launch simultaneously on PlayStation 4, but the studio ran aground with Sony's internal bureaucracy. After multiple delays and apologies from Bethesda, the project was officially pulled today.
"After months of discussion with Sony, we regret to say that while we have long been ready to offer mod support on PlayStation 4, Sony has informed us they will not approve user mods the way they should work," Bethesda said through an official company update. "We consider this an important initiative and we hope to find other ways user mods can be available for our PlayStation audience. However, until Sony will allow us to offer proper mod support for PS4, that content for Fallout 4 and Skyrim on PlayStation 4 will not be available."
Bethesda is not mincing words here, placing the ball firmly in Sony's court for declining to permit users to "do anything they want" with mods on the console. And to be certain, this is not the first time that Sony's opaque and notoriously slow internal certification system has presented a hurdle for developers. On the other hand, Bethedsa's mod roll-out on Xbox One drew heavy criticism from the modding community, mainly for failing to police stolen and misattributed uploads. So you could definitely argue that Sony's unwillingness to embrace the same open system has a few upsides.
On the other, other hand, no one ever said that Bethesda mod support on PS4 has to be an all-or-nothing situation. But it sounds like the company ran into too many walls trying to reach a compromise with Sony on this issue.
"Like you, we are disappointed by Sony’s decision given the considerable time and effort we have put into this project, and the amount of time our fans have waited for mod support to arrive," says Bethesda, adding that the company will provide an update "if and when the situation changes."
Top image: Deserter X's minidress mod for Fallout 4, which you can download here!