On Skyrim

Posted by on Dec 2, 2011 in Commentary | 4 comments

Skyrim. I’ve been playing it for about three weeks now and I’m having difficulty finding a place to start from when I try to write about it. I guess I’ll start with how the character I’m playing now turned out.

I originally intended to turn her into a dual-wielding warrior. Dual-wielding was only possible through mods in Oblivion so seeing it available in Skyrim’s introduction sequence was refreshing and, I have to admit, a bit exciting to see. This was how I played the game until I was around level 20.

Things took a different turn when I found a few exploits online. I was able to get Sneak up to around 80 by attacking the Greybeards, then I maxed Speech by repeatedly selecting the correct dialog options in Riften, going as far as creating a macro using my G15 keyboard to automate the process. Predictably, doing this bit me in the ass later on. The monsters scaled beyond my ability to fight them and I found myself scrambling for a solution when the first elite dragon showed up.

I found salvation in Conjuration. During the fight I summoned a flame atronach while taking cover behind a pillar. She was able to throw 3-4 shots at the dragon before dying from a flame breath. This is how I eventually won the fight. I’d summon her between breath attacks, she’d hit the dragon a few times then die again. I’d simply summon another to fight for me. The damage was pathetically minimal. Chip damage, really, but she was laying on the hurt more than I was so I kept at it until we both prevailed. I decided that Conjuration was going to be next in my maxed skills from that point.

The fight with the dragon showed me how unprepared I was for the level that I was in. Scaling was a problem, yes, but it was something I created, therefore something I needed to solve. I started by leveling my Smithing followed by Enchanting. During this process I was thinking of leveling my Alchemy as well and try to see if I could make the stacking exploit work (Fortify Enchanting -> Fortify Alchemy -> Fortify Enchanting -> Fortify Alchemy -> Fortify Smithing -> create Legendary weapons and armor). I decided against it because I didn’t want to one-shot everything. I was also too lazy. Leveling Alchemy’s a bit of a pain. Food functions as actual food in Skyrim, not as alchemical ingredients similar to Oblivion.

My character is currently a conjurer/swordsman (one-hand). There’s something screwed up in the fact that you can call two Draemora Lords to fight for you while you’re wearing full daedric gear. It’s like forming a Daedra squad. Conjuration is overpowered, but so is a lot of stuff in this game. And I’m not being critical. Anyone familiar with the Elder Scrolls series knows that becoming a living god has always been a possibility. It’s just a question of wanting to become one. Actually, you’d have to work pretty hard not to become godlike in this game.

So, to state the obvious, I’m having a lot of fun with Skyrim, more so than I ever did with the previous Elder Scrolls titles.