By Keith Toornman
On November 11th, 2011, a new video game hit the shelves from The Elder Scrolls series, “The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim.” The Elder Scrolls have long been renowned for their fully immersive gameplay and intricate worlds. Bethesda Software has been producing the series since its start with “The Elder Scrolls: Arena” in 1994. This was one of the first games that included a free roaming world. It was a large step for the gaming industry to have this kind of freedom in their worlds. Now, the newest installment, “The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim,” is still holding to their old values.
The game starts off with you as the main character, being held as a prisoner of war. You have been accused of treachery against the empire. You then fill out information including your character’s race, name, and what they look like. Then, your character is immediately taken to the chopping block to be punished for their crimes.
After a near death experience with a dragon, you escape with another survivor. They flee from the scene and agree to meet up at another location. From there on out, the game never takes a break. You are flooded with quests and tasks that keep you busy for hours on end. You are told to do everything from delivering a present to assassinating an emperor.
The game itself is a wonderful blend of stealth tactics and blazing action scenes. One minute you could be enjoying the view of a snowy mountain range, the next, battling a massive fire breathing dragon. This game is versatile that even beginners can enjoy playing it. Players that are new to games can play it as simply as working as a blacksmith or miller. While more experienced players can become a werewolf or explore ancient underground ruins while unlocking long forgotten secrets. Needless to say, this game was definitely made with a variety of player’s wants in mind.
My initial thoughts to this game were inspired by the prequels. The past games were more than satisfactory in so many different aspects that this was a shoe-in. “Skyrim” sold over $450 million dollars and over 3.4 million copies in the first 48 hours. The game is explosive from the start and kept me addicted for well over two weeks. The video game has kept me busy with non-stop adventuring the whole time.
Another avid video game player is junior Qoree Coleman. When asked what Coleman’s favorite part of the game was he responded with, “There are so many good things” he specifically pointed out one part, “When you’re in that world with Alduin,” said Coleman.
Alduin, a dragon, is the main antagonist of the game. He is trying to destroy the world and you are tasked with defeating him and preventing the apocalypse. Near the end of the main quest line you have to enter the spirit world. In the spirit world, you meet up with a few ancient warriors and together you vanquish the beast and save everyone.
Though I loved this game, I must admit it did have a few down sides. There was not a very diverse variety of wildlife which pretty much consists of goats, elk, and walruses. The graphics were supposedly the best graphics of any game to date; though this did not seem to be the case as you walked around paper-thin grass clumps. The game itself was packed full of missions and quests but they seem to go by so fast that the player is left wondering what to do before long. The myriad of miscellaneous tasks seems like a lot to accomplish, but after about an hour they have dwindled into nothing.
Coleman commented “The spell system, it got 10 times worse from ‘Oblivion,’” he pointed out.
The use of magic in The Elder Scrolls games have always been an intricate and important part of the gameplay. In the previous game, “The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion,” there were more spells than you could imagine. They included things like unlocking doors, shooting flames from your fingertips, or making people like you. The player even had the possibility of making their own custom spells to do whatever they wanted. In” Skyrim”, there are only a handful of spells that are useful in any way. There is no customization other than wielding two spells at once and finding new spells is a very difficult task.
Overall, I found this game to be one of the most fun that I have ever played. It has a good story, smooth gameplay, and is very open for experimentation. The things that make people love this game so much greatly outweigh the less attractive parts. It kept me and millions of other glued to their TVs for days on end. I would recommend this game to anyone who is looking for some quality entertainment or a gift for this holiday season.