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Beta patch available for Skyrim

A beta version of the 1.4 patch of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is now available via Steam.

A new update patch has been launched for the hugely popular role-playing game The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - but it is only a beta version.

The 1.4 patch is said to fix a number of the minor bugs in the game and to improve performance issues, but such is the epic size of Skyrim, Bethesda has decided to release a beta version of the patch first to test it out.

Available via Steam, it is, however, only accessible to those who have signed up for beta functionality. Users are also reminded to make sure they have all files backed up in advance of using the update - it is, after all, a bit experimental.

To get it, users need to log in to Steam, click on the upper menu, select settings and go to the Beta Participation section and select Change.

Then select Skyrim Beta from the drop-down menu and Steam will re-start with the game updated.

There are numerous minor fixes included with the patch, but the significant ones including fixing bugs that caused crashes when saving or loading games, or caused the story to progress incorrectly after loading a saved version.

As for quest issues, this will also be tackled by the patch. Again there are numerous minor details being fixed, including the Unusual Gem inside the Thalmor Embassy being made accessible after finishing the Diplomatic Immunity quest, while the Breaching Security story no longer requires a quest token to receive a fortune reading from Olava the Feeble.

While these fixes will be welcomed by PC users, spare a thought for those trying to tackle the game on the PlayStation 3.

These gamers have been desperate for the patch as on that format the title experiences "game-crippling" lag after 35 hours of play - which is, as any player would agree, absolutely nothing in the world of Skyrim.ADNFCR-1220-ID-801274656-ADNFCR