The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim will be handled differently than it was for Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas. According to the developer, the Skyrim DLC will be bigger, "more expansive" and more spaced apart than the smaller DLC packs for the Fallout games.
According to studio chief Todd Howard in an interview with Kotaku, "For Fallout 3 we did five DLCs. That was a very aggressive path for us. Our plan now is to take more time, to have more meat on them (for Skyrim). They'll feel closer to an expansion pack."
"With Fallout 3, it was, 'Ten dollars is the sweet spot for us and we know we want to put out five of them. And we had overlapping teams. We were coming off Fallout 3 and right back in," Howard stated, adding that the development cycle was "a real hardcore loop."
Howard then mused, "We just think we can do better content if we approach it a different way."
That's not to say there wouldn't be substantial updates in between the expansions. "Because that gap is going to be bigger, we want to put litle things out for free in between," Howard noted, "We've already done that for PC with the high-res pack. We're trying to figure out what those things are."
Bethesda is also counting on the mod community to fill in the gaps, which it wasn't able to do with the Fallout games quite as easily. "We knew we wanted to do more stuff to bring mods to people," he stated. A large part of that is the Skyrim Creation Kit.
So, for now, Bethesda will concentrate on large expansions and go with the flow on updates. Howard concluded, "So I think we had more of a plan and thought process of 'We want to make the game better after it's out.' We don't know what that means yet. People will tell us. But maybe we want to rebalance it. Maybe we want to add some features and patch them in, whereas in previous games, like Oblivion or Fallout 3, our thinking was just to patch it, fix the big problems. Our bandwidth at that time was that we needed to work on Skyrim. But now, with the game's popularity, we really want to do all that stuff."
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim was released on PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 on the 11th November, 2011.