Speaking at the DICE Summit in Las Vegas last week, Chief Game Designer for Bethesda Software Todd Howard got into a bit of the nuts and bolts behind the lag issues afflicting many PS3 users who have put a lot of time into their copy of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.
A much-cited factor by fans as to why this lag was happening is the ever-increasing size of the player’s save file. Howard (according to Kotaku) says that’s not true. “That’s the common misconception. It’s literally the things you’ve done in what order and what’s running. Some of the things are literally what spells do you have hot-keyed? Because, as you switch to them, they handle memory differently.”
Bethesda apparently knew this might happen, as Howard went on to say that they knew PS3 owners would run into a “bad memory situation” and they took steps to try to prevent that, but didn’t figure it would be as widespread as it’s turned out to be.
Howard says patch 1.02 was supposed to take care of a lot of the issues, and it did, but still others persisted. Patch 1.04 has been released and the hope is that it will fix many more of these issues, but it does seem impossible to fix 100% of cases.
That said, Bethesda is obviously trying, and should be commended for taking steps to try to fix this. If you still run into these issues even after 1.04, though, we understand if you don’t take much solace in that fact.