Rumor: The Elder Scrolls Arena Coming To Mobiles
Update: Peter Hines, spokesman for Bethesda, has spoken to Joystiq (via Eurogamer) to confirm that The Elder Scrolls: Arena is not being re-released for any platform, and that the addition to the database of the Australian Classification Board was simply a clerical error.
"There is no new version of [TES: Arena] coming out," he said.
"It apparently was never formally in their system because the release of Arena pre-dated [the Australian Classification Board's] existence. This is simply an error on [the classification board's] part. It should just say PC, not multiplatform. We've notified them and they're going to fix. There is no new version of the game coming. Just a clerical mix-up."
Original story: According to an April 9th rating discovered on the website of the Australian Classification Board (via games.on.net), the first Elder Scrolls game, subtitled Arena, will be making a multi-platform return at some point in the future.
While no specific platforms are mentioned, the PC version is already current available for free directly from developer Bethesda, leaving the possibility of either an HD remake or a tablet and phone port the likely contenders. Considering the fondness many publishers have for giving old back-catalog games a new lease of life on touchscreens, our money's on the latter.
Arena was the first game to be set in Bethesda's Tamriel universe, and is brutally unforgiving in comparison to later Elder Scrolls games. According to the game's Wikipedia entry, Ken Rolston - lead designer of The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind - started the game at least 20 times, and only survived the first dungeon once.
Will modern gamers on any platform have the patience for such gameplay in the 21st century? We'll have to wait and see what Bethesda have to say when more details emerge.