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Is "Redguard" the next Skyrim DLC pack, or a new Elder Scrolls game?

Mysterious ZeniMax trademark repeatedly extended

Another Skyrim DLC pack? Bethesda, wiz zees 30-hour expansions you are spoiling us. Also, have you thought of the metaphysical fallout? Surely, the staple-gunning of yet another game-sized chunk of Elder Scrollwork to Skyrim's mountainous immensity would undo the very fabric of the Transmundane, tumbling the various planes of Oblivion into, well, oblivion. Also, I haven't even fought the Ebony Warrior yet. Only 40-odd levels to go...

If certain stealthy manoeuvrings on the trademark and patents front are any indication, the next (final?) Skyrim DLC pack will focus on the Redguard, skilled warriors who hail from the nation of Hammerfell, just off Skyrim's south-western border. Bethesda's parent company Zenimax trademarked the term "Redguard" as regards "downloadable computer game software offered via the internet and wireless devices" way, way back in March 2011, but has yet to file a Statement of Use.

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The firm has, however, repeatedly and successfully filed to extend its trademark over the intervening months, most recently in August 2012. The trademark will elapse in February 2013 unless Zenimax once again files for extension. Given the hotly suspected arrival of next generation hardware at or around E3 this year, further dilly-dallying on the subject of Skyrim add-ons seems unwise - new console announcements tend to spell doom for current gen sales. Unless, of course, Redguard is in fact a full-blown game, planned for release on the Xbox 720. Pinches of salt, and all that...

This wouldn't be the first Redguard-centric Elder Scrolls title Bethesda has thrown together - the studio published a third-person spin-off, The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard, in 1998. If you're in the mood for a little lore-mining, the Elder Scrolls wiki offers a long, straggly, interesting history of Hammerfell which makes mention of a massive golem known as the Numidium.

OXM user mistergrimm noted in November 2011 that "there is a city called Dragonstar on [Hammerfell's] border with Skyrim that is, or at least used to be, split between the two nations. Its absence from the game is a bit suspicious to me." Any other suspicions to broach, ladies and gentlemen?

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