The Elder Scrolls are quintessential role-playing games for young and old video gamers alike. Whether you like riding dragons or not, whether you like crawling dungeons or not, at some stage in your gaming life you’ll dive into the Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. The World is in grave danger. The windswept blisteringly cold province of Skyrim is plagued by civil strife… and dragons! Will our hero save the day? Will he, who is Dragonborn himself, rise to the challenge from humble beginnings to legendary endings? Of course he/you will!
Playability: Effortless glide
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim gallops smoothly in the wind, glides effortlessly in the sunny skies of even elder machines… One of the features I like most is the ability to zoom out to third person view or zoom in to first person. There are few games that can combine first and third person as smoothly as the Elder Scrolls series. I tend to live my virtual experiences in third person as first person immersion usually makes me grab for the toilet seat… Skyrim is not perfect: it has minor bugs here and there and somewhat repetitive voice acting. Oooh, and it’s not real, it’s just a game! You’ve got to be splitting hair to fine chinks in this shining armor.
Annoyance: Brave Heart with fireballs
I don’t like cold weather so I prefer to visit the lochs of Scotland and the fjords of Norway in summer (preferably in years of above average global warming northern temperatures). The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim has a lot of snow, blizzards, storms, ice caves and cold winds… But true enough, I don’t mind the cold behind the screen of my computer, especially when I’m sipping a frozen margarita… Difficulty setting ranges from toddler easy (great for old video gamers) where the blow of a blunted toothpick fells a frost giant, to ramboesque egomania (great for testosterone budding teenage kids). There is a limitless abundance of side quests in Skyrim, some of which are automatically generated. For those who don’t want to spend their life in Skyrim, just following the lengthy main quest will eventually gratify them with a feeling of mission accomplished. Or maybe you’ll stay in Skyrim for ever, just forging weapons, concocting potions, chopping firewood and leading a peaceful life…
Beauty: Beauty pageant
Skyrim is noticeably better looking than its predecessors in the Elder Scrolls series. There is no need for mods and other fan made tweaks to enjoy beautiful people and amazing scenery. Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but you are bound to find a mate to your tastes (you can marry in the game) among the denizens of Skyrim. If anything, people in Skyrim tend to look a lot better than in the real world! Imagine a world populated by actors (the virtual kind). On a big screen, the landscapes of Skyrim are nothing short of breathtaking. Nature lovers and happy hikers will feel right at home… watch out for trolls though!
The Old Video Gamer’s Prattle: Endless epic 8/10
I don’t quite remember when I started playing The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. It’s been a while. I don’t even dare look at the number of hours I’ve clocked on the game… I definitely was not part of the early wave of eager fans of the series, and I’m not sure I’m a converted fan either. But whether you like role-playing games or not, simply because you’re an old gamer like me and you’ve seen a lot, you definitely want to see more of what the virtual Universe has to offer, so play Skyrim. It is a massive epic on a breathtaking scale. At times, it’s overwhelming. The sheer number of quests, characters, dark dusty dungeons and vantage points where you can take pictures of gorgeous vistas is endless. Skyrim is not for those who like their adventuring neat and tidy. The Elder Scrolls are not known as casual games, more like a video game equivalent of Robert Burn’s tomes (see my prattle on the Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion).