It's a new first-person medieval fantasy RPG, developed by Obsidian – previously known for their work on The Outer Worlds, Fallout: New Vegas, and the incoming Grounded. While it was announced alongside a host of other Xbox Series X games in Microsoft's July showcase, including our long-desired Fable reboot, Avowed might be the most exciting thing to come out of the event.
While it seems like the first time Obsidian is plunging into a magical medieval time, the developer's close ties to Bethesda in the past mean that comparisons to The Elder Scrolls franchise are inevitable – especially since The Outer Worlds cleaved so closely to the template laid out in the Fallout games.
There's plenty to pique our interest beyond a Skyrim-clone, though, including the game taking place in Eora, the world of the Pillars of Eternity games. Not to mention the high-powered visuals possible on the next-gen Xbox Series X console.
Here's everything we know so far about Avowed, including its first trailer, what platforms it's coming to, and when we expect it to release.
Avowed trailer: see the game announcement here
The first Avowed trailer sets the scene clearly, with medieval battlements, flaming arrows, and plenty of war-torn landscape beset with skeleton warriors. We get a brief glimpse of the player viewpoint at the end, showing off a similar first-person outlook and the ability to wield a sword in one hand and cast rune-based spells in the other. So far, so Skyrim.
Avowed on Xbox Series X release date
There's no Avowed release date as of yet, but with another Obsidian game (Grounded) releasing in 2020, we don't expect to see this game on shelves until at least late 2021, if not after.
By comparison, Elder Scrolls 6 was first announced back in 2018, and is yet to have a confirmed release date, but we'd still expect Obsidian to beat Bethesda to the punch, since it's working on Starfield first.
Avowed platforms: Xbox, PC, Game Pass
Avowed will be an Xbox console exclusive. That means it will likely release on Windows 10 PCs and Xbox Series X. It will also be coming to Xbox Game Pass, as with all first-party Microsoft games.
Now that Microsoft has acquired Obsidian, we won't see the game come to PS5, even though The Outer Worlds landed on both PlayStation and Xbox platforms.
Yes, Avowed looks like Skyrim
It's testament to the influence and legacy of The Elder Scrolls franchise that Avowed's first-person fantasy epic can't but be compared to the likes of Skyrim.
But Obsidian is starting to make Bethesda competitors a staple of its output, after it released sci-fi RPG The Outer Worlds that seemed to many live a lively, galactic spin on Fallout – also shortly after Bethesda announced its own space RPG called Starfield.
Starfield is nowhere to be seen, but it's almost certainly a next-gen title. With Fallout 76 losing a lot of goodwill among past Bethesda fans, and Obsidian seemingly able to infuse an old RPG template with a lot of fun new ideas, Avowed could be a continuation of Obsidian's dominance over their former business partners (having developed Fallout: New Vegas back in 2010).
Either way, we're excited to see what Obsidian brings to the table, even if it cleaves close to Skyrim in its combination of spell-aided combat and epic open-world quests.
Avowed is set in the world of Pillars Of Eternity
The comparisons don't end at Skyrim for this medieval fantasy RPG, though. Avowed will actually be set in Eora, the same world used as setting in the Pillars of Eternity games – both developed by Obsidian.
Avowed will take a first-person perspective, of course, rather than POE's isometric perspective, so we imagine the game will feel quite different from its predecessors.
We expect fans of the POE games will be sure to recognize elements of the world. Pillars of Eternity largely focused on the nation of Dyrwood, though, so we could see Avowed explore a different nation, continent, or part of the world we haven't seen before.
What's also new here is that the POE games were very much PC-first experiences, even if both 2015's Pillars of Eternity and 2018's sequel Deadfire came to current-gen consoles a couple of years after their initial launch dates. Avowed being announced on an Xbox stream, for a launch across PC, Xbox, and Game Pass, confirms how different an experience this is going to be. Expect a very controller-friendly RPG.