OT: Skyrim (No Spoilers)

Submitted by Decatur Jack on January 8th, 2014 at 12:51 PM

Since it's the offseason, we can welcome more OT.

Brian mentioned in a recent mailbag that he played Skyrim:

I finally broke down and played Skyrim. Do not do this. Skyrim is the kind of awful that only reveals itself after you've set 60 hours of your life on fire listening to boring conversations and dully hacking things in the face. Their open world is beautiful and soulless, shiny on the outside but hollow in the center. Bethesda's mechanics are hopeless broken in every single game they make, and while being able to jump across a continent in Morrowind was charmingly broken, Skyrim's mechanics invite you to a dull, iron-dagger-laden trudge through one moronically designed UI after another.

I recently got Skyrim and started playing it two days ago, and was wondering what you guys thought. Good or bad?

So far in my opinion it's not as good as Fallout 3 from an introduction/understanding-the-world standpoint, but my complaints are not the same as Brian's complaints about the mechanics.

Also, let's try to keep this as spoiler-free as possible in case people haven't played the game and might be considering it.



January 8th, 2014 at 12:56 PM ^

Computer games are a waste of time. I mean, I have a job, I have responsibilities.  I can't spend all day in front of a tv or computer screen wasting MY valuable time....doing....things....that....


Play Skyrim all you want. Sounds like fun.


January 8th, 2014 at 3:52 PM ^

Booo says this guy.  Cut out a few hours of sleep and, voila!  Wife and kids in bed?  Time for gaming!

Shameless plug:  Check out my YouTube page if you're interested in getting started in Battlefield 4 and/or the new DayZ Standalone and subscribe!  You won't regret it.


January 8th, 2014 at 3:54 PM ^

LOL.  Right now, with the way Battlefield 4 is playing out, I'd say they both suck.  If DICE can get things straight, BF franchise is miles ahead of COD in terms of design and gameplay.  Its so much more intricate but admittedly more difficult to play for those just getting started.


January 8th, 2014 at 1:00 PM ^

It's an amazing world, but he's right. The game is super easy and the gameplay is relatively bland. Play something like Dark Souls and combine that level of difficultly with Skyrim and you'd have a masterpiece. 

The best game I've played recently was The Last of Us. That's more of a "visual novel" type deal, but it's extremely enjoyable.


January 8th, 2014 at 1:41 PM ^

I think they've maybe fixed a lot of things, but I bought it when it first came out and it was so broken it was unbelievable. I know enough about Bethesda (the studio that made the game) to know that they're the type that says, "Well, the game is fundamentally broken but we'll beta test it via its release and then fix everything 3 or 4 months into the release."

Maybe they've fixed it, but games these days (fuck, I sound old) are way too easy, to the point where they treat you like a child. Intros to games should (IMO, at least) be seemless and you shouldn't really know what's going on. There should be no "Move the LEFT JOYSTICK to move!" type of bullshit.

If you don't know intuitively that the left joystick is to move you shouldn't be playing video games. It's the equivalent of drivers ed saying, "Use the STEERING WHEEL to turn."


January 8th, 2014 at 2:37 PM ^

It really depends on what playstyle you were initially aiming for. Unfortuantely, Skyrim still isn't quite balanced as far as what classes really work. Playing a spellcaster, I would tear through random hostiles in one or two hits but the second I meet another spellcaster with magic resistance, it was game over.

I have it on my PC now, and was told to try playing as a tough melee class and my god, it is so flippin easy. Just make health and stamina potions and mine stuff to create your own armor and weapons and the game is so much of a cake walk that I can't even bring myself to finish it.

The good news is you can always level those other skills. The bad news is you will never get those "wasted" perks back unless you are playing on PC.


January 8th, 2014 at 1:05 PM ^

We can talk football, basketball, drinking (probably especially drinking), women, jokes, coaching staff you-name-it and I feel pretty youthful and on par with the rest of the board in terms of my level of understanding.

But when the conversation turns to TV programs, music or, God forbid, video games, I am as lost as lost can be and have no idea what you guys are talking about.  I honestly thought Skyrim was the name of new series on television or something.

I feel very, very MgrowOld.  


January 8th, 2014 at 2:22 PM ^

TV programs, music, & video games. Yeah, that pretty much nails my incompetencies down cold. I am such a nerd, and so out of it. I don't watch hardly any reality TV . . . not American Idol, not Dancing with the Stars, nor Survivor, none of them. I don't have cable. I don't care who slept with who. I can't begin to keep up with music. Why in the world would I ever listen to Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines?" Why would I want to see a grown ass man act like an idiot and Twerk with Miley Cyrus? Of course, she's "hawt," but what in the world does that have to do with music? (and mind you, I judge neither of them. If anything, they and Kanye West and R. Kelly and Lady Gaga and Beyonce are all pretty shrewd in marketing themselves. Sex sells, always has, and they're all being good music business people.)

But video games, yeah, that's where I'm really left in the dust. If being a good dad means that I play video games with my kids, then I suck as a dad. I have a 12 year old, and he'd play video games all day long if I let him. I absolutely refuse to spend time trying to master different key sequences. Won't do it.

There is a single TV show I watch, and it is really lame and not a guy kind of show: Downton Abbey. I guess I might have seen an episode or two of antique road show, but not enough to watch regularly.

Actually, I think I'm worse than you, mgrowold:  I don't even follow sports as much as I could, and I don't know all the players and coaches throughout the NFL, NBA, NHL, and MLB.

No, I'm mostly at peace with being irrelevant and having gotten off the pop culture train.


January 8th, 2014 at 3:30 PM ^

"There is a single TV show I watch, and it is really lame and not a guy kind of show: Downton Abbey."


I would like to personally tell every single person who would tell someone that they shouldn't be watching Downton Abbey because they are a dude to screw right the hell off. That goes for any TV show. Watch what you enjoy (and I totally enjoy DA, too, it's a great show).


January 8th, 2014 at 1:18 PM ^

I have friends/relatives that played through the whole thing and mention all the different questlines and things you can do and how great it is, but I quit well before I got to any of them. 

I am sort of a completionist, and in the first couple caves I would click on every nook and cranny hoping for some secret door or hidden item.  I spent maybe 10 minutes fighting stuff and hours clicking on stuff, not to mention picking up every cup or bottle of wine or whatever.  

Eventually it just became a game where I punched value per weight into a calculator to figure out what I should pick up and what I should leave.  Every cave I would get encumbered multiple times and play musical items with the mule/helper person so I could fucking move again.  I really hate encumberance -- if the item's going to encumber you, you shouldn't be able to pick it up.


January 8th, 2014 at 2:35 PM ^

Not to put you down, but isn't that how pillaging a real dungeon would be like?  You'd go in, grab the loot that would encumber you the least and provide the max profit.  Seems pretty logical to me.  Sounds like other games that let you take everything in sight are "broken" and you got used to that poor coding.


January 8th, 2014 at 3:39 PM ^

I never played D&D growing up, but it seems to follow what I view as "D&D-ish" elements, most notably encumberance.  When it first happened, I was like, what is this shit, am I going to have to roll for initiative as well?  Saving throws?  It's just not what I was expecting ahead of time when I picked it up and it's not a common mechanic in games nowadays.

I wouldn't have a problem with it if it was more obvious what would have real value (beyond sell price).  Skyrim has an absolute shit-ton of worthless items in it, way more than any game I have ever played, no question.  Cups and cabbages and tomatoes and candlesticks and fuck if I know what they're used for.  Maybe tomatoes are the best thing ever and I would need a ton of them for the Magic Tomato Quest in the future; I didn't know they were useless until I played through the game for a while.  So I ended up picking up everything initially and it really bogged the game down.


January 8th, 2014 at 1:22 PM ^

I loved Oblivion and Skyrim. 

Actually, I just watched The Hobbit the other night after never seeing any Lord of the Rings movies, and found myself thinking of the similarities to the Skyrim world.  I might have to break the game back out now.  


January 8th, 2014 at 1:27 PM ^

I have been playing Skyrim on a PC since the game came out in Nov. 2011. Probably logged 500+ hours on it. The graphics is amazing and the open world is (I believe) larger than Oblivion, Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas. The best part is to finish every side quest as well as minor quest so as to enjoy the breadth of the design. Also, I have about 50 mods installed so the game is vastly optimized and improved by 3rd party contributors. 


January 8th, 2014 at 1:30 PM ^

I miss Skyrim, my 360 died and I could justify buying a new one when the news consoles were coming out soon. Not I have the Xbox One and I can't play Skyrim. I miss it. These next gen games are shallow and terrible.


January 8th, 2014 at 1:38 PM ^

I really enjoyed it. Then i put it down for a year and picked it back up with mods from the Steam Workshop.


Its well worth it, on sale its only like 5 bucks on the PC. happens pretty regularly.


Eventually the sand in the sandbox gets annoying and you will put it away, but its still a great game.


I think it gets a bad rap because theres 400+ hrs of gameplay so noone ever finishes the whole thing. its basically too big for its own good. you will tire of it before you finish.


January 8th, 2014 at 2:42 PM ^

That is a personal issue with me and Bethesda games. I get so into the games in the beginning that all Iwant to do is run around and do all the side quests (which are arguably better than the main storylines), but there are so damn many that I end up logging 100+ hours into the game and nearing the level cap and before I know it, I am starting to get a little bored and I still have 12 hours of main storyline to finish as well as another 100 hours of random side quests.

Still love the games, though. Can't wait for Fallout 4.


January 8th, 2014 at 1:51 PM ^

It's good, but it got old kind of quick. And by quick, I mean 120+ hours. I pos'd someone in this thread because they hit the nail on the head by saying games have gotten just too easy. While there definitely is a LOT to do in Skyrim, I wouldn't say that any of it is particularly hard. Still a good game tho, worth $60 (thats what I paid on PS3 a couple years ago, no clue what it costs now on console/steam).


January 8th, 2014 at 1:51 PM ^

I thoroughly enjoy open world games, which is why I love Assassin's Creed so much, and would like to play Skyrim simply because it is open world, but...meh, other than Zelda, I'm not a fan of fantasy games. They just don't interest me.