Are you a gamer with plans of one day becoming a parent? Bethesda Softworks, publisher of the popular series of “Elder Scrolls” and “Fallout” role-playing games for console and PC platforms, wants you to get started on procreating right now. In a post on the company’s Bethesda Blog, vice president of public relations Pete Hines sent word last Friday, February 18, fell exactly nine months before the 11/11/11 release of the company’s much-anticipated “The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim” for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.
Instead of just making the announcement a formal “FYI,” Hines issued a challenge… and an exceedingly bizarre challenge at that. It’s best to let the statement speak for itself rather than attempt to paraphrase: “So, think you have the stat points in you to produce the perfect eight pound dragon-slayer? Like the wizened wizard he is, Pete is throwing down with a casual quest, offering up an unknown reward to any couple adventurous enough to name their 11/11/11-born child ‘Dovahkiin.'”
“Dovahkiin” translates in the game’s fiction to “dragonborn,” a reference to the hero of the coming game’s status as one of the last of the dragon hunters. Bethesda advises caution in getting busy on getting busy just for the game’s sake however, acknowledging that “we have possibly doomed a child” and citing the need for a “hefty disclaimer.” Again, the “official” words on the subject are far more informative (and entertaining) than any mere paraphrasing could possibly capture:
“Disclaimer: Any reward for completing this quest will not ultimately justify the potential teasing your child could — and probably will — endure over its lifespan. Bethesda Softworks is not responsible for your parenting. You may gain experience points for completing this quest, but you will not care at 3am on a work night. Completion of this quest may also result in decreased desire to play video games and/or function as a human being. Consult with your friends before embarking on this quest; while it may not start in prison, it probably ends there.”
In other words: Don’t actually do it!