Defecating Downer: Part 1st

This is a series of blogs where I take a dump on popular opinions. Be it games, movies or music, nothing is safe from the torrent of shit I command. Also, no animals were harmed in the making of this because I'm not a fucking savage, you dick!

Foreword

As the inaugural blog in the series, I just want to thank everyone for the support and love. I wouldn't be here if you all weren't such fucking dickheads that didn't know the backside of an ass from a good product. I don't blame you for having shitty opinions, but that doesn't mean that I can't make fun of you for it. As such, we might as well start things with bang. Our topic today shall be none other than Giant Bomb's 2011 GOTY (fuck you Brad!) aka The Elder Scrolls V: The Final Frontier Skyrim.

The monkeys have been on an exclusive diet of cabbage and eggplant (lots of fiber) and their arms are well-rested and ready to fling. Their eyes are thirsty for some Dovahkiin blood. Just look at them!

"Hey guys, what's going on over her... oh."

So you can probably tell I just saw Rise of The Planet of the Apes. Great film and so many great scenes. Like this one:

Melted Snickers bar or dog poop? You decide.

Ok, I'll stop now.

Why Your Shit Stinks

I previously blogged a bit about why I dislike Skyrim. To sum it up, it was the lack of storytelling, or rather the poor job that Bethesda does when it attempts to tell you a story. I've thought about it a bit more so I have a few more points to make about this.

As I was playing Skyrim last week, I stumbled on to a great example of exactly what bothers me about the storytelling. I was minding my own business, stealing mammoth cheese and catching butterflies (shut up) when I stumbled on to a house in the middle of nowhere. Inside this house I found a dead man, what I presume to be the owner, on his bed. There was a skillbook and some potatoes, but nothing of much value. However what bothered me was not the lack of loot, but the lack of explanation. Who was this man? Why was he killed? The game did absolutely nothing to explain this to me. Not a scrap of parchment or a bloody note. Nothing. The entire house completely lacked any significance.

I hate using the term "immersion" but, for a lack of better word, I'll make an exception here. This is where immersion breaks for me. It's like that house was a giant "Fuck you" from Bethesda. A time sink, a waste of time. It's entire existence lacks any justification except for some change in scenery.

For my second example I'd like to use the "Bioware method" as a counterpoint. Rather I'll use Mass Effect, Dragon Age and SWOTOR since those are the most recent Bioware games I've played, though this should apply to all (or most) of their other games as well. Lets talk companions. Rather the completely shitty and fucking useless companions in Skyrim (I'm looking at you Lydia!).

In a Bioware game, you have companions that travel with you and provide supporting dialogue, develop your and their character and generally provide lots of entertainment and a feeling of camaraderie. In Skyrim you have a mostly mute companion that occasionally curses while in combat and has the brain of a 2-year-old poodle that had a part of it's brain removed after a terrible car accident on 34th and 2nd. Even pathfinding seems to be an incredibly difficult task for them.

But lets leave the AI problems alone. That's not what makes me upset. What makes me upset is the complete fucking lack of any characterization of your companions. You have three basic options (Follow, Stay, Go Away) and that's it. They don't pipe-in to make comments during important story (lol) sequences. And they certainly don't seem to mind when you murder and entire village of farmers and leave their naked, bloody corpses on the street while their children run around playing hide-and-seek (Ok, seriously why can't I fucking kill kids Bethesda? They're so annoying! Also I'm pretty sure that's some form of discrimination. Just saying).

In an entire game world with thousands on NPCs and miles of terrain, I've never felt more alone.

I realize that my views on the storytelling are subjective and that some people enjoy that type of stuff (people also enjoy watching fat ladies step on rotten eggs, if you catch my drift), but there's an even bigger and more fundamental problem with the game: combat.

der Kampf

In a game where you spent 40-60% percent of your time in combat, it's fucking inexcusable to have such a shitty fighting system. It's bad, oh boy is it bad. In Failout 3 (original, I know) fighting consisted of running real close to an enemy, pressing the VATS button and aiming for the head, then backing away while you wait for your action points to recharge so you can do it again. I can't believe Bethesda managed to make a combat system that's even more boring, but they did.

First of all, lets get this straight. First Person Combat in any game sucks.

Chronicles of Riddick?

You betcha. All the cool parts involved you sneaking behind someone and initiating a canned animation kill. The face-to-face combat was a joke.

Condemned?

Also terrible. Your weapons constantly breaking did not help. At all.

Mirror's Edge?

LOL!

Dead Island?

Sure the Analog combat may seem like a good idea of paper, but anytime you fight more than one enemy, the entire thing just falls apart. Also those kicking animations are just ugh.

Quite frankly Skyrim never really had a shot in the first place. But what pisses me off is that they have the whole 3rd person perspective at the touch of a button, but somehow they managed to make that an even worse experience. We're talking "I'd rather get testicular cancer than play this crap" bad here. None of your swings feel like they have any weight to them and you never really know if your hit has connected. Furthermore the entire "heavy attack" bullshit is just that, bullshit! Canned killing animations seem to activate at random and enemies just tend to rush at you like mindless drones. Never thought I'd say this but I'd kill for a QTE in that game...

It's awful. It's boring. Worst of all it's not fun. Skyrim fails at the one reason games exist.

_______________________________________________________________________

So where are we left here? A game where the main gameplay mechanic is awful, boring and tedious combined with a poor storyline, undeveloped characters and a horrible sense of isolation. You may love it. You may think it's the best game you've ever played. But you're wrong. And ugly. And your breath stinks. And that's that.

Tune in next time where I rip Bastion a new one! <3

18 Comments
19 Comments
Edited by Enigma777

This is a series of blogs where I take a dump on popular opinions. Be it games, movies or music, nothing is safe from the torrent of shit I command. Also, no animals were harmed in the making of this because I'm not a fucking savage, you dick!

Foreword

As the inaugural blog in the series, I just want to thank everyone for the support and love. I wouldn't be here if you all weren't such fucking dickheads that didn't know the backside of an ass from a good product. I don't blame you for having shitty opinions, but that doesn't mean that I can't make fun of you for it. As such, we might as well start things with bang. Our topic today shall be none other than Giant Bomb's 2011 GOTY (fuck you Brad!) aka The Elder Scrolls V: The Final Frontier Skyrim.

The monkeys have been on an exclusive diet of cabbage and eggplant (lots of fiber) and their arms are well-rested and ready to fling. Their eyes are thirsty for some Dovahkiin blood. Just look at them!

"Hey guys, what's going on over her... oh."

So you can probably tell I just saw Rise of The Planet of the Apes. Great film and so many great scenes. Like this one:

Melted Snickers bar or dog poop? You decide.

Ok, I'll stop now.

Why Your Shit Stinks

I previously blogged a bit about why I dislike Skyrim. To sum it up, it was the lack of storytelling, or rather the poor job that Bethesda does when it attempts to tell you a story. I've thought about it a bit more so I have a few more points to make about this.

As I was playing Skyrim last week, I stumbled on to a great example of exactly what bothers me about the storytelling. I was minding my own business, stealing mammoth cheese and catching butterflies (shut up) when I stumbled on to a house in the middle of nowhere. Inside this house I found a dead man, what I presume to be the owner, on his bed. There was a skillbook and some potatoes, but nothing of much value. However what bothered me was not the lack of loot, but the lack of explanation. Who was this man? Why was he killed? The game did absolutely nothing to explain this to me. Not a scrap of parchment or a bloody note. Nothing. The entire house completely lacked any significance.

I hate using the term "immersion" but, for a lack of better word, I'll make an exception here. This is where immersion breaks for me. It's like that house was a giant "Fuck you" from Bethesda. A time sink, a waste of time. It's entire existence lacks any justification except for some change in scenery.

For my second example I'd like to use the "Bioware method" as a counterpoint. Rather I'll use Mass Effect, Dragon Age and SWOTOR since those are the most recent Bioware games I've played, though this should apply to all (or most) of their other games as well. Lets talk companions. Rather the completely shitty and fucking useless companions in Skyrim (I'm looking at you Lydia!).

In a Bioware game, you have companions that travel with you and provide supporting dialogue, develop your and their character and generally provide lots of entertainment and a feeling of camaraderie. In Skyrim you have a mostly mute companion that occasionally curses while in combat and has the brain of a 2-year-old poodle that had a part of it's brain removed after a terrible car accident on 34th and 2nd. Even pathfinding seems to be an incredibly difficult task for them.

But lets leave the AI problems alone. That's not what makes me upset. What makes me upset is the complete fucking lack of any characterization of your companions. You have three basic options (Follow, Stay, Go Away) and that's it. They don't pipe-in to make comments during important story (lol) sequences. And they certainly don't seem to mind when you murder and entire village of farmers and leave their naked, bloody corpses on the street while their children run around playing hide-and-seek (Ok, seriously why can't I fucking kill kids Bethesda? They're so annoying! Also I'm pretty sure that's some form of discrimination. Just saying).

In an entire game world with thousands on NPCs and miles of terrain, I've never felt more alone.

I realize that my views on the storytelling are subjective and that some people enjoy that type of stuff (people also enjoy watching fat ladies step on rotten eggs, if you catch my drift), but there's an even bigger and more fundamental problem with the game: combat.

der Kampf

In a game where you spent 40-60% percent of your time in combat, it's fucking inexcusable to have such a shitty fighting system. It's bad, oh boy is it bad. In Failout 3 (original, I know) fighting consisted of running real close to an enemy, pressing the VATS button and aiming for the head, then backing away while you wait for your action points to recharge so you can do it again. I can't believe Bethesda managed to make a combat system that's even more boring, but they did.

First of all, lets get this straight. First Person Combat in any game sucks.

Chronicles of Riddick?

You betcha. All the cool parts involved you sneaking behind someone and initiating a canned animation kill. The face-to-face combat was a joke.

Condemned?

Also terrible. Your weapons constantly breaking did not help. At all.

Mirror's Edge?

LOL!

Dead Island?

Sure the Analog combat may seem like a good idea of paper, but anytime you fight more than one enemy, the entire thing just falls apart. Also those kicking animations are just ugh.

Quite frankly Skyrim never really had a shot in the first place. But what pisses me off is that they have the whole 3rd person perspective at the touch of a button, but somehow they managed to make that an even worse experience. We're talking "I'd rather get testicular cancer than play this crap" bad here. None of your swings feel like they have any weight to them and you never really know if your hit has connected. Furthermore the entire "heavy attack" bullshit is just that, bullshit! Canned killing animations seem to activate at random and enemies just tend to rush at you like mindless drones. Never thought I'd say this but I'd kill for a QTE in that game...

It's awful. It's boring. Worst of all it's not fun. Skyrim fails at the one reason games exist.

_______________________________________________________________________

So where are we left here? A game where the main gameplay mechanic is awful, boring and tedious combined with a poor storyline, undeveloped characters and a horrible sense of isolation. You may love it. You may think it's the best game you've ever played. But you're wrong. And ugly. And your breath stinks. And that's that.

Tune in next time where I rip Bastion a new one! <3

Posted by biospank

I have the same problem as you but I love the questing and open-glitchy-world.

Posted by Slaker117

The melee combat in Skyrim is quite lacking, but I found the bow and arrow to be surprisingly fun.

Posted by mylifeforAiur

Your writing style is painfully obnoxious and replete with grammatical errors. I just wanted you to know that; usually I skip past such trivial matters, but your insistence on pseudo-acerbic writing warranted such. I mean... I expect this type of quality from a Yahoo Answers post.

I wouldn't be here if you all weren't such fucking dickhead that didn't know the backside of an ass from a good product.
Posted by Enigma777

@mylifeforAiur said:

Your writing style is painfully obnoxious and replete with grammatical errors. I just wanted you to know that; usually I skip past such trivial matters, but your insistence on pseudo-acerbic writing warranted such. I mean... I expect this type of quality from a Yahoo Answers post.

I wouldn't be here if you all weren't such fucking dickheads that didn't know the backside of an ass from a good product.

Thank you. It has taken me many years to master it.

Posted by N7

People love Skyrim for the art design. It's a world so huge, filled almost entirely with lifeless shambling corpses the game wants you to believe are "people".
 
It's a static and bland world. Well, not so much bland, but... lifeless. There's a spirit, a soul if you will. But no... life. Nothing ever happens. You walk in, everyone makes a big deal about something that's really kind of dumb, and you fight. After that, someone will walk up to you and yell.
 
The fact that people will demand more from Bioware or Naughty Dog and not Bethesda because "dude harhar da gaem is soo beg, didju see how beg it was omg so wutsits borken" is saddening. Love Skyrim, hate Skyrim. I don't care. You'll get no arguments from me about it. But when you complain that the aiming in that one part of Uncharted 3 was kind of messed up for a few minutes, and spew vitriol like a madman then turn around and praise Skyrim, ignorant to any issues the game has(Which are quite prominent), you look stupid.
 
I'm more in the boat that Skyrim was a test. Fallout 3 had glitches but was completely functional. As was Oblivion... New Vegas, not so much... But that wasn't Bethesda.
 
Bethesda are a bag of dicks. Skyrim was no crowning achievement. I'm not biased against it. It was fun for a while. But it's broken. Broken and... not very good. As with Call of Duty, I think it's time people start demanding more from Skyrim. As it stands, it presents nothing new to the franchise. It has done nothing differently. It's the same game but prettier. As Fallout 3 was "Oblivion with guns" Skyrim is "Fallout with swords, but as the game shipped a brigade of pirates besieged our studios and kidnapped the primary 'fun' developer. As we did everything we could for his release, he succumbed to his malaria and died a cold and poor man's death. Thus, Skyrim was shipped without the added ingredient of fun".
 
I don't know. I guess what I'm trying to say is, when you get used to everything it has to offer, and those rose-tinted glasses come off, the game part of it isn't so great. Exploration is fun and that's always been a staple of The Elder Scrolls. My hype boner fell off not long into playing it. Crashing, reloading, turning it off and turning it on every couple of hours just got tedious after a while. And if "Bayonetta" being broken on the PS3 is more than enough for people to come together in a drum circle of "fuck that game", then I feel quite adamant that my issues with Skyrim are valid.
 
That said, I agree.

Edited by GetEveryone

I played Skyrim for about 15 hours and had my fill. I'm sure when some of the problems that plagued the PC version (namely, trying to get it to run after they applied their various updates), I'll go back to it. There's no denying its jankiness, though. Like you say, the world is heavily devoid of actual life even if the design is pretty amazing, and the story is also-ran material. It doesn't help that I often get a bit lost in such wide-open games, but in Skyrim I never felt like there was any reason to hunt out the quests.

All in all, I agree and your post was entertaining. Looking forward to the Bastion edition, even if I vehemently disagree. That game was amazing.

@N7 said:

And if "Bayonetta" being broken on the PS3 is more than enough for people to come together in a drum circle of "fuck that game", then I feel quite adamant that my issues with Skyrim are valid.

I'm pretty sure GB wrote off Bayonetta for GOTY after the PS3 debacle, so your argument holds water. If they're going to attempt to define some sort of standard, have it be across the board, not solely when it suits.

Posted by McGhee

The combat, side quest missions, and world in Fallout 3 were far better than Skyrim.

Basically, I just can't wait for Fallout 4 - perhaps a next gen system launch title?

Did you notice that they re-used some of the kid faces from Fallout 3 for Skyrim? Not only that they use that same face over and over again. All of these annoying and creepy child clones running around, all of the exact same height.

Posted by Claude

This blog smells bad. There's my dump.

Posted by Video_Game_King

@mylifeforAiur said:

Your writing style is painfully obnoxious and replete with grammatical errors. I just wanted you to know that; usually I skip past such trivial matters, but your insistence on pseudo-acerbic writing warranted such. I mean... I expect this type of quality from a Yahoo Answers post.

I wouldn't be here if you all weren't such fucking dickhead that didn't know the backside of an ass from a good product.

Yea, a bad writing style can destroy an otherwise good blog. I can't know here, mainly because I haven't read all of it. It's about Skyrim, a game I haven't played, and I have a code of honor to uphold.

Online
Edited by Enigma777

@Claude

This blog smells bad. There's my dump.

Whoever smelt it dealt it

Edited by Ventilaator

@Enigma777:

Ooh! Hating on Bastion next! Can't wait to read that one. I liked everything about Bastion except the part where I had to play it.

Posted by Enigma777

@Slaker117 said:

The melee combat in Skyrim is quite lacking, but I found the bow and arrow to be surprisingly fun.

You know what, I put in some more time after I wrote this and only used a bow and arrow and it was a lot better. Still, I can't see playing the entire game that way because it got kinda boring after an hour.

Posted by Rekt_Hed

Good shit :) I got really fucking tired of every one of my friends going 'Yeh there's loads of glitches and shit but duder.......DRAGONS!!!' Like at that point I'm supposed to cream my pants and go 'wut.wait dragons you say? Ohhh hellz Yeh smoother that shit all over my face'

Now I haven't played skyrim but I've sat and watched my friend play it enough to know that I don't wanna play that game. After fallout and new Vegas ive just had enough of that shit. I think people love it aol much because there aren't many other people that make games in that style for better or worse.

My house mate even asked me 'what are you never gonna get skyrim?' And and found totally ok saying 'nope'
Tbh the start and end of all I wanted to see was that giant hitting that bear in the quicklook XD.....that was fucking awesome.

Can't wait to see why u hate Bastion even though I really enjoyed it....except for those weapon trials AND OMFG THOSE FUCKING BULLFROGS FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKK MMMMMMMEEEEEEEEEE THOSE THINGS SUCKED!

Posted by Tophar01

I don't understand how that scenario at the house breaks "immersion" for you. In the real world when people die in their homes there isn't always a note or something explicitly telling you what happened. The fact that there is just a dude there that is dead seems more realistic than a dead dude with a note next to his bed telling you about how he died.

Also if you click in the right stick, it zooms out to third person. That's on the 360, I'm not sure how you do it on other skews

Posted by nintendoeats

I just wanted to say that I think the combat in Condemned was great.

Posted by Little_Socrates

I really like the game, but your complaints are all valid.

Edited by DespoticDave

I understand your position on the story in, Skyrim. It's one of the reasons why I never bothered to play it in the first place. To be fair, this game was never about you controlling a character; it's about you being the character and exploring the world. This is all traditional open world RPG stuff. Games like that are always going to be about the players experience within the world. Open world RPG's are almost never as soundly structured as a character driven narrative; their about the player creating their own story.

Posted by dbol

I didn't like Skyrim because of the lifeless and boring world and the catastrophically bad combat, but I don't see why finding a dead man in a house without explanation as to how he died should break any perceived "immersion", whatever that's supposed to mean. Not having it made clear to you why the man is dead should, if anything, make the world feel more real since people don't walk around with black boxes.