22 Feb 2013

It's a Big World Out There

Oh my god, it's almost the end of  February. How did that happen?

This guard will either get a promotion or a funeral. Well, a cremation
Skyrim came out over a year ago, which of course means I've now really started getting into it. No-one can ever accuse me of not being on the cutting edge of video game trends.

The adventures of Wruk the Orc ground to a bit of a halt back in December '11 but not for any good reason. It's not like I wasn't enjoying in the game, I just lost interest and motivation for what I was doing. I think it stemmed from the fact I wasn't straying too far from Whiterun and trying to level up my Blacksmithing without doing any real adventuring.

In my second go at Skyrim, I've been doing a lot more wandering, which, as one might imagine, has been a far more rewarding experience. It's not exactly a news flash, but some of the best parts of the Elder Scrolls games are the parts in-between your quests. I tend to set out with various goals in mind, but if I wander past an abandoned castle or a tomb, I have to explore it. This turns a short trip across Skyrim into a multi-part adventure, much like a true wandering hero might have.

One thing I really noticed is that I'm forming far less of an attachment to the characters and generally the world of Skyrim. Partially, I feel it's a cultural thing, because I actually find it harder to remember all of the names of the characters involved. The setting feels far more alien, since it's based off a culture I have very little knowledge about. However, I think I lot of it is down to the attitude that characters have towards me as a character. None of the characters are particularly friendly, and many are down right hostile, which feels strange. In Fallout 3, for example, you'd expect the attitude of the people you meet to be sour, it's the end of the world after all. Despite there being a war on in Skyrim, you'd think the people would be a little more civil.

This isn't my Orc, but to be honest, they're all very similar looking
There's also one final thing which I suppose I'd like to see implemented into future games in the series. Whenever I set out on my adventures, I like to sleep until about six in the morning, just as the sun rises, so I can set out during the day time. Apart from the experience bonus, there's no real point in doing this. Not sleeping for days on end has no effect on the game. The enemies you encounter during the daytime are largely the same to those at night. I just do it because... It makes sense, I suppose.

There aren't many parts of Fallout: New Vegas that I liked (because it was a bad game), but the "Hardcore" system was a excellent idea, even if not well implemented. I'd love to see something like that in Skyrim, where the environment and the world generally have more of an impact on the way you play. Making eating necessary rather than superfluous. Make sleeping every few days necessary. Going deeper than that, imagine if the weather changed how you played. Getting caught in the snow not only slows you down, but tires you over time through building cold. I have the wonderful image of being caught in a blizzard and having to hunker down in an abandoned barrow overnight, with only a fire to warm you.

At this stage, I'm basically going into describing another game. Enough of that. See you next time when video games.

1 comment:

  1. Hiyooooo~! Have you been!?

    Ya know, Skyrim is one of those games that I want to get into, but know that I probably shouldn't because it'd be a massive time suck. But I always imagined that the best part of these massive RPGs is the act just exploring your surroundings instead of rushing to the next town to get a quest done.

    The things you wished were implemented sound awesome, but perhaps that might've made the game a lil' too hardcore and (perhaps) not as appealing to the more casual crowd (again, since I haven't played the game, so I'm probably off-base here).