In Skyrim, you can see neighbouring Elder Scrolls regions - and previous game settings - Morrowind and Cyrodiil because a believable horizon demanded it, Bethesda has explained.
If they weren't there, in other words, it would look odd.
They're not necessarily poised to stage downloadable content adventures, but Bethesda's Todd Howard also hasn't closed the book on that idea, telling Kotaku "maybe one day we'll use them".
"The reason they are there - and I will not say if we are or are not using them in the future - is when we first built the landmass for Skyrim we knew we were going to have these tall mountains," explained Howard.
"And what can you see see? We have views early in the project where you can see into the [neighbouring] province from the other game. We needed to have something [there].
"If you walk there, from a distance it's - yeah, the stuff is there. And the thinking is, maybe we'll use it one day."
Todd Howard, game director, Skryim
"It's not high detail," he added. "If you walk there, from a distance it's - yeah, the stuff is there. And the thinking is, maybe we'll use it one day.
"But our larger worry was, I'm going to climb up on top of a mountain and look that way. What will I be able to see there? We try to cover all those angles as much as we can."