WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD
Keep in mind, these opinions were all formed after playing the PC version. There are some major differences with the PC version compared to console in how they perform.
Arguably one of the most anticipated games of all time, “The Elders Scrolls V: Skyrim” is one of the greatest games of all time, without a doubt. Released on November 11th, 2011, “Skyirm“, has grossed over 1 billion dollars and has seen success worldwide. Game producer, Bethesda, is best known for it’s in depth and extremely detailed open world RPG’s. Bethesda, yet again created a masterpiece that deserves to be in every gamers collection.
“Skyirm” was released on PC, Xbox 360, and PS3. It ran well on the Xbox 360 and PS3, but the best place to play was on the PC. I’ll get into that later, but for now lets stick to the core mechanics and features of the game. “Skyirm” is still one of the most beautiful games out there, almost 3 years after it’s release. Keeping in mind how absolutely massive the world is, Bethesda didn’t leave any small detail out when creating this game. From the blood left on your sword after an intense battle, to the scales on the dragons you encounter throughout the world of “Skyirm“, everything is gorgeous.
The combat in “Skyirm” is ok. I found myself feeling like I’m not hitting anything because there is no vibration on the mouse when contact is made. Although, this changed when I played it on the console. It’s a minor annoyance, but I forgot about it after playing for a couple hours. The combat can get extremely challenging at times, as well, especially if you are under leveled for the area you are trying to conquer or explore. Certain “bosses”, like the Dragon Priests, take some serious thought and strategy as they each have their own unique way to evade your attacks and deal massive damage at the same time. There was, however, one weapon in the game, that if acquired turns the game into easy mode. This weapon is called Windshear. Whenever it makes contact with the enemy, 100 percent of the time the enemy will become staggered. This means you can constantly mash the attack button or key and continuously stun the enemy until they are defeated. I quickly put away this weapon for good once I realized how strong it was. It is helpful for clearing ruins or dungeons that you are struggling with, but I found it more enjoyable trying to grind through the hard parts of the game using just my magic and mace.
Now lets talk about the weapons and skills available to the player. First off, you are not bound to a certain class and every weapon, shield, piece of armor, and magic is available to everyone. Every time you level up you gain the ability to upgrade either your stamina, magicka, or health. You also gain a skill point that you can use to upgrade abilities towards specific “trees”. There are multiple skill trees that you can upgrade. To name a few, there is speech, one handed, two handed, magic, shield, etc. In order to upgrade the abilities in these skill trees you need to level up the skill itself. In order to do that you have to use the corresponding equipment. For example, if you want to level up your one handed skills, use a one handed sword in combat and eventually you will level that individual skill and be able to unlock stronger abilities. However, in order to unlock the stronger abilities, you first have to use your skill points to unlock the lesser skills in the branch in order to work your way up to being able to unlock the stronger skills once you have reached the appropriate level. In order to level up your character, you have to level up your skills. There are also books scattered across the world, that if you read you gain level in an individual skill that the book is based off of. For instance, you find a book about sneaking, you interact with it and you will gain a level in your sneak skill. That’s not to say all books grant you skill levels, though. In order to know if you will gain a skill level, you’re going to have to interact with it.
The biggest thing about this game is the world. The world is massive, it takes about 15-20 minutes to get from one side of the map to the other. That’s if you don’t run into bandits, frost trolls, necromancers, or even dragons along the way. Most of your time will be spent exploring the massive and beautiful word called “Skyrim“. There are tons of side quests to do and different caves, ruins, and dungeons to explore. It seems never ending. I made it to level 80, the max level, had over 1000 hours in game time and I still don’t think I managed to see everything the world of “Skyrim” has to offer.
The story is also very strong. Although the characters that you meet throughout the game are pretty one-sided, it’s not such a big deal because the game wasn’t made to be like that. The story takes a decent amount of time to complete and is actually fairly difficult if you don’t take the time to level yourself appropriately. It can also be extremely easy depending on how much time you spend exploring and doing other various activities besides the main quest. I didn’t finish the main story until about 500 hours into the game just because I spent so much time doing side quests and exploring.
The basic premise of the main story is that you are Dragonborn, someone who is able to absorb dragon’s souls and will save the world from the return of dragons. You are able to use things called dragon shouts, which are special powers that you learn from finding various word walls around the world. Once you find the word wall, in order to be able to use the dragon shout, you need to use a dragon soul, which you get from killing dragons.
Overall “Skyrim” is a game that stands alone at the top in many gamers’ minds, and for good reason too. The game is amazing and Bethesda really out did themselves. Gamers anxiously wait for the next “Elders Scrolls” game, but until it’s release “Skyrim” can keep your attention for hours upon hours. I give this game a perfect 10/10. Until next time Uzers – Mike