Bethesda's Pete Hines will always say "no thank you" to Battle Royale knockoffs

Wondering when Bethesda is going to hop aboard the Battle Royale bandwagon with 100-player Fallout 76 (opens in new tab) elimination matches, or a version of Skyrim where you airdrop onto an island and start hunting other Dragonborn? It'll likely never happen, according to Pete Hines (opens in new tab), SVP of Bethesda's global marketing and communications (who you've no doubt seen during Bethesda's E3 presentations). Speaking with GamesRadar+, Hines explained what he looks for in successful game pitches, and he's none too keen on copying the latest trend.

"If it sounds interesting, if it's something the devs are clearly excited about, and it's something we think is unique and different, that's trying something new or doing something new, that's what gets me excited," says Hines. 

"If it's like 'Well, these guys did this, so we're gonna do this,' I can't stay awake. 'Hey, here's our Battle Royale game!' No thank you. Not even remotely interested. That's not who we are as Bethesda; that's not how we've gotten to where we are over the last 30-odd years. And honestly, I think our devs know better than to say 'Oh, we're just gonna riff off of something that somebody else is doing.'"

Hines cites Bethesda's virtual card game The Elder Scrolls Legends as a recent example. "If it was just a true Hearthstone clone, I wouldn't have been interested," he says. "But I thought it was something different and unique, with the two lanes and the variety in terms of the colors and how the decks work. I thought it sat in a really interesting spot on the spectrum of strategy card games, from super simple to really complicated and everything in between, that I just liked where we are. Those are the kinds of things that I think get us, as a company, excited." 

So there you have it. You won't ever be smashing llama pinatas in a Bethesda game if Hines has anything to say about it - and frankly, Bethesda has always stood out by following its own star. Why go the copycat route when most of the gaming populace is hanging on your every word regarding The Elder Scrolls 6 (opens in new tab), Fallout 76 (opens in new tab), and Starfield (opens in new tab)?

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Lucas Sullivan

Lucas Sullivan is the former US Managing Editor of GamesRadar+. Lucas spent seven years working for GR, starting as an Associate Editor in 2012 before climbing the ranks. He left us in 2019 to pursue a career path on the other side of the fence, joining 2K Games as a Global Content Manager. Lucas doesn't get to write about games like Borderlands and Mafia anymore, but he does get to help make and market them.