The Elder Scrolls V - Skyrim. Review.
I was at work, being my charming normal self, casually selling video games and making friendly jokes towards customers. It seemed like a normal day for anyone who wasn’t inside my head, which was filled with the explosive pressure of a volcano ready to erupt. I heard that Skyrim was going to break street date, which meant I would be waiting 1 day less than I expected - after telling myself for the past few months, “It’s okay, it’s only a few more months.” It’s here.
The email came through around 3pm that Skyrim had broken street date and after a flamboyant acrobatics number, I was speeding home with life threatening urgency.
For those that don’t know, Skyrim is an open-world, role-playing game by Bethesda, which boasts 300+ of game play. Your choices effect almost every aspect of the game and every decision comes with a consequence which can be felt in the world. Every town/ trail comes to life with lively characters and beautifully created environments.
The first thing I noticed when the game started, was how much the graphics have really improved. It starts off similar to Oblivion, as in, you don’t know where you are or how you even get there, all you know is that you have been taken captive along with a few other men.
I took the time to enjoy the scenery, trying to make the most of an obviously bad situation, and I have to say, Skyrim looks stunning. It feels like the land of Skyrim is alive with the detail and depth of our own world.
Through the tutorial, you’re given a great run down on how things work and how much everything has improved. I’m in love with the games combat system, using the left and right trigger, to control the left and right arms is great. Dual casting destruction magic is incredible, as seen in the above photo.
I was shocked at how much ferocity comes out when you blast a little goblin type critter with a cruel burst of continuous flames. It’s really fucking sweet.
What’s even better, is that you can equip weapons and magic at the same time, so you can light up an enemy with your fire spells and stop them with your dagger if they get too close.. If you’re not a fan of magic, you can do quite amazing things with just a sword and shield, or a sword and axe, or an axe and a mace.
Combat also feels a lot more weighty and realistic, which is a huge improvement from Oblivion, which was a little sloppy at best.
There is just so much to do in a game like Skyrim, it’s easy to see why a lot of gamers can feel a little overwhelmed by a title like this. I mean, the possibilities are endless, you can do anything. It’s so easy to simply wander from the path and find yourself doing something else or getting involved in another sub plot, or even just chasing butterflies.
You can’t even begin to imagine the scope of the game world by reading a review or listening to my opinion, you have to jump in to see it for yourself, you have to experience the thrills and comforts of the world. You have to witness the harsh realities, the simple pleasures and everything in between. You have to make the choice, feel the consequences and watch the world react around you.
Despite the amount of content that breathes so much life into this enormous world, none of it seems pointless, none of it seems like a waste of time. It all comes together so perfectly to create an amazing experience.
It’s insane, and this, I feel, is Bethesda’s greatest achievement..
Every village/ city feels different and there is a sense of excitement felt whenever you wander into a new location. You never know what to expect, and from the moment you walk into town, you already want to meet everyone.
Everyone has a role to play, they all have different stories and opinions. Skyrims residents are all up to date on current event’s and will even comment on the civil war, with deep felt emotions towards one side or the other. It’s so easy to be taken from your path when you get involved in other peoples business, but everything is worth exploring in this game and even something seemingly boring can pan out to be a great experience.
If you’re a long time fan of the Elder Scrolls series, like myself, the fiction only becomes richer and more meaningful with a lot of cross-referencing which makes this game all the more rewarding.
If it wasn’t enough that the land is now being assaulted by Dragons, which were long believed to be dead. Skyrim is being torn apart by a civil war, which you happen to become involved with and ultimately effect the outcome.
Like Oblivion, you’re able to chose your Race from the beginning - Myself, I chose the Khajiit. I named him, Khalea and he’s a fucking badass..
I feel like I haven’t touched on nearly as much as I wanted to with this review, in fact, I know that I haven’t. I mean, there’s just so much more to it. I hit the basics, though, without revealing any spoilers and I just want to add one more thing.. Skyrim has surpassed my expectations, from intense battles with Dragons, stealing horses and generally making an ass of myself to enjoying the beauty of the world and exploring ancient ruins and dungeons; everything has improved with this title and I believe this is a huge benchmark for any RPG to match.
Very few games can create a world of this magnitude and keep it together without splitting at the seems or choking on it’s own ambition - Bethesda has done everything right by Elder Scrolls fans and have done justice to the genre.
While it’s for the most part all positives, I’ll add one negative note; everyone knows that Bethesda is part famous for bugs and glitches, Skyrim is no exception, there are a few minor bugs.. Mainly just conversations with relatively unimportant characters and one frame rate skip thing that happened to me, but they’re only minor bugs which don’t take away much from the game play. Plus, I’ve heard Bethesda already has a patch for most of the bugs.
I’ll give this baby a whopping 9 - 10.
Brilliant game play, backed by an amazing story, set in a beautifully realistic and with the power of so much freedom, Skyrim is a very solid game.
Now, if I don’t blog for another 12.5 days, I’m bent on finishing that previously mentioned 300+ hours of game play.
Hope you enjoyed my half hearted review, I’ve gotta get moving and start selling this game in an hour.
Thank you, enjoy your weekend and if you pick this game up, enjoy your many adventures.