Why Skyrim disappointed me. :( (Spoilers involved!)

I wanted to love this game by the time I was finished with it but so many things kept me from it. The only reason I S-Ranked the game because they were easy achievements and I spent a lot of time with it in the hopes that some of my problems would be rectified. There will be spoilers here.

The Story

The story in Skyrim is short. Very, very short. Now I know that there are a shit ton of other things to do in the game, and my problem doesn't 100% stem from the fact that it's short. It's boring and anti-climactic. I made my way up the mountain, got the Elder Scroll for Paarthurnax, and was sent into Sovngaarde. When I killed Alduin in a ridiculously easy battle, I was thinking, "Great now what does Paarthurnax have for me?" Because I really liked doing quests for him. I get back to the mountain, he leaves and says something along the lines of "Thanks for killing him, I'm just gonna go now" and I get an achievement called Dragonslayer.

So I walk around, looking for where I can continue the main quest and experience some awesome story moments (See: Morrowind, Red Mountain), and everything is blank. I get really confused as to my direction because at this point I had already beaten the extremely lackluster Guild quests and became their masters.

Then I come on GB to find out that that WAS the whole story. -1 for Skyrim. I don't really play these games for the story which is almost always shitty (except Morrowind's which was awesome), but this definitely ranks up there with Oblivion's story.

No limitations does not mean a better game.

Next up, the skills and stats. In previous Elder Scrolls games you were forced to either pick a class that was pre existing or create your own. These classes were defined by Major and Minor skills. You could pick up to 5 (IIRC) for each, with Major skills contributing the most to your overall level, Minor skills a little less, and all other skill none at all (though they will individually still increase).

In Morrowind, (And I'm assuming Arena and Daggerfall) there was absolutely no form of enemy scaling. This meant that, when creating a custom class, you HAD to put your most useful skills based on the type of character you want if you wanted to make it past certain parts of the game. For instance, you might not want to pick Conjuration as a Major for a Berserker character who specializes in melee weapons and medium to heavy armors. (You totally could but he would be more like a Support Berserker or something :P ).

In Oblivion, this whole system was turned upside down. Enemies scaled with you and people got around this by making their "Miscellaneous" skills the skills they used the most - therefore, they'd still be increasing their useful skills while staying a ridiculously low level. If you did want to level up you could just level up some of your majors and minors.

And with Skyrim, they thought to mix the two of them up - which WOULD have been good except for one major thing, the removal of stats, classes, majors and minors altogether. Any character can learn any skill, the only thing separating you from this is an RP complex in your head. Sure, when I first started my character out I thought this would be cool. But as time went on I realized that I wouldn't really need to make another character to experiment with different classes and stats, something I loved doing. They removed a lot of these in a process I believe they called "streamlining" (Like repair which at first I thought was a good idea, now I miss it) and while they did add perks, these simply make up for the lack of actual stats. I would much rather permanently increase my characters stats rather than add something like "Bows do 20% more damage" or to give me a spell that creates armor for my mage.

I miss looking at my stats and applying them when I gain a new level. I got so damn tired of increasing my Health and one perk when I levelled up, I felt like I wasn't going anywhere with my character. For this reason the game feels extremely shallow. -2 for Skyrim.

What's the point of exploring if the rewards are shit?

The main draw for me in these games is exploring and finding cool and unique items, armor, and weapons. I can't tell you how disappointed I am in Skyrim for completely getting rid of this aspect in the game. It was one of the very first things I noticed and it stuck with me through my entire experience with the game. These items are almost NEVER found at random like they so often were in previous games (Morrowind and even a little Oblivion) and only can be found during specific quests. There are a total of 15 Daedric items in the game and that's as far to "Unique" as you're going to get.

When I go into a dungeon, I want to be there for a reason. I don't want to continue wearing my armor I've had on since the 30 hour mark straight on until the 130 hour mark. There is never ANYTHING worthwhile in these areas and at one point I just stopped going. When you rarely DO find something unique, it is almost always complete garbage and can be easily outclassed by something you can create on your own.

While the environments are beautiful at times, like the western valleys, I don't find that good enough of a reason to actually go exploring.

-111111 points for Skyrim.

So..

While the game is good I think it gets much too much praise. As a fan of the series I feel like this is the most shallow Elder Scrolls game yet and I fear for the future of the franchise. I don't agree with it being on so many GOTY lists, but it's inevitable. Personally I would have a few other games much higher on my list - Skyward Sword the most, Dead Space 2, Dark Souls - but GOTY lists aren't really something that matters to me.

47 Comments
48 Comments
Posted by xyzygy

I wanted to love this game by the time I was finished with it but so many things kept me from it. The only reason I S-Ranked the game because they were easy achievements and I spent a lot of time with it in the hopes that some of my problems would be rectified. There will be spoilers here.

The Story

The story in Skyrim is short. Very, very short. Now I know that there are a shit ton of other things to do in the game, and my problem doesn't 100% stem from the fact that it's short. It's boring and anti-climactic. I made my way up the mountain, got the Elder Scroll for Paarthurnax, and was sent into Sovngaarde. When I killed Alduin in a ridiculously easy battle, I was thinking, "Great now what does Paarthurnax have for me?" Because I really liked doing quests for him. I get back to the mountain, he leaves and says something along the lines of "Thanks for killing him, I'm just gonna go now" and I get an achievement called Dragonslayer.

So I walk around, looking for where I can continue the main quest and experience some awesome story moments (See: Morrowind, Red Mountain), and everything is blank. I get really confused as to my direction because at this point I had already beaten the extremely lackluster Guild quests and became their masters.

Then I come on GB to find out that that WAS the whole story. -1 for Skyrim. I don't really play these games for the story which is almost always shitty (except Morrowind's which was awesome), but this definitely ranks up there with Oblivion's story.

No limitations does not mean a better game.

Next up, the skills and stats. In previous Elder Scrolls games you were forced to either pick a class that was pre existing or create your own. These classes were defined by Major and Minor skills. You could pick up to 5 (IIRC) for each, with Major skills contributing the most to your overall level, Minor skills a little less, and all other skill none at all (though they will individually still increase).

In Morrowind, (And I'm assuming Arena and Daggerfall) there was absolutely no form of enemy scaling. This meant that, when creating a custom class, you HAD to put your most useful skills based on the type of character you want if you wanted to make it past certain parts of the game. For instance, you might not want to pick Conjuration as a Major for a Berserker character who specializes in melee weapons and medium to heavy armors. (You totally could but he would be more like a Support Berserker or something :P ).

In Oblivion, this whole system was turned upside down. Enemies scaled with you and people got around this by making their "Miscellaneous" skills the skills they used the most - therefore, they'd still be increasing their useful skills while staying a ridiculously low level. If you did want to level up you could just level up some of your majors and minors.

And with Skyrim, they thought to mix the two of them up - which WOULD have been good except for one major thing, the removal of stats, classes, majors and minors altogether. Any character can learn any skill, the only thing separating you from this is an RP complex in your head. Sure, when I first started my character out I thought this would be cool. But as time went on I realized that I wouldn't really need to make another character to experiment with different classes and stats, something I loved doing. They removed a lot of these in a process I believe they called "streamlining" (Like repair which at first I thought was a good idea, now I miss it) and while they did add perks, these simply make up for the lack of actual stats. I would much rather permanently increase my characters stats rather than add something like "Bows do 20% more damage" or to give me a spell that creates armor for my mage.

I miss looking at my stats and applying them when I gain a new level. I got so damn tired of increasing my Health and one perk when I levelled up, I felt like I wasn't going anywhere with my character. For this reason the game feels extremely shallow. -2 for Skyrim.

What's the point of exploring if the rewards are shit?

The main draw for me in these games is exploring and finding cool and unique items, armor, and weapons. I can't tell you how disappointed I am in Skyrim for completely getting rid of this aspect in the game. It was one of the very first things I noticed and it stuck with me through my entire experience with the game. These items are almost NEVER found at random like they so often were in previous games (Morrowind and even a little Oblivion) and only can be found during specific quests. There are a total of 15 Daedric items in the game and that's as far to "Unique" as you're going to get.

When I go into a dungeon, I want to be there for a reason. I don't want to continue wearing my armor I've had on since the 30 hour mark straight on until the 130 hour mark. There is never ANYTHING worthwhile in these areas and at one point I just stopped going. When you rarely DO find something unique, it is almost always complete garbage and can be easily outclassed by something you can create on your own.

While the environments are beautiful at times, like the western valleys, I don't find that good enough of a reason to actually go exploring.

-111111 points for Skyrim.

So..

While the game is good I think it gets much too much praise. As a fan of the series I feel like this is the most shallow Elder Scrolls game yet and I fear for the future of the franchise. I don't agree with it being on so many GOTY lists, but it's inevitable. Personally I would have a few other games much higher on my list - Skyward Sword the most, Dead Space 2, Dark Souls - but GOTY lists aren't really something that matters to me.

Posted by mikey87144

@xyzygy: There is one more significant quest you do concerning the main story.

Online
Posted by wolf_blitzer85

I love the game and have thoroughly enjoyed my time with it, however you do bring up some good points. I was really disappointed with the ending of the main quest and like you was left standing there sort of confused as to what just happened after it all went down. 
 
I really also wish certain quests had a bigger impact (or an impact at all for that matter) on the world. Also, I too have been losing my desire to explore stuff as I'm getting sick of opening chests with total garbage and 28 gold. To combat that, I just added a mod that inserts a bunch of Morrowind style weapons into the game. It adds a little more variety, but unlike the older games, those random caves just don't draw me in like they used to.
 
I do find myself just wandering around out in the field taking in the sights and avoiding any dungeons. I certainly haven't gotten bored looking at the game as it's gorgeous in spots as the PC has some great mods that really improve the visual quality of the game. It's gotten to the point where I don't even have the compass on anymore. I don't want to know I'm blowing past caves and shit because I just really don't care. But man those trees sure are pretty.

Posted by PeasantAbuse

Spending 130 hours in a game you don't like is fucking insane.

Posted by themangalist
@xyzygy said:

What's the point of exploring if the rewards are shit?

The main draw for me in these games is exploring and finding cool and unique items, armor, and weapons. I can't tell you how disappointed I am in Skyrim for completely getting rid of this aspect in the game. It was one of the very first things I noticed and it stuck with me through my entire experience with the game. These items are almost NEVER found at random like they so often were in previous games (Morrowind and even a little Oblivion) and only can be found during specific quests. There are a total of 15 Daedric items in the game and that's as far to "Unique" as you're going to get.

When I go into a dungeon, I want to be there for a reason. I don't want to continue wearing my armor I've had on since the 30 hour mark straight on until the 130 hour mark. There is never ANYTHING worthwhile in these areas and at one point I just stopped going. When you rarely DO find something unique, it is almost always complete garbage and can be easily outclassed by something you can create on your own.

While the environments are beautiful at times, like the western valleys, I don't find that good enough of a reason to actually go exploring.

-111111 points for Skyrim.


While I absolutely applaud Bethesda trying to stuff a story into all the dungeons, I agree the loot is awfully disappointing. And whenever I think about it I recall how great Gothic 2 was when dungeons were not abundant but if you explore every corner, you are bound to find something interesting. Hand crafted worlds are great.
Posted by Heltom92
@mikey87144 There is? Do you main the kill paarthurnax quest?
Posted by Asurastrike

Skyrim has been a pretty big disappointment. I'm something like 66 hours in and stopped looting things or opening chests about 20 hours ago because I had already crafted my Dragonscale Armor and Deadric Bow.

Posted by SpaceInsomniac

Agree about the loot, but not about most other issues. I leveled up my smithing to 100, and I'll happily improve any weapon or armor I find, but I absolutely refuse to create some epic dragon armor and ruin the game's loot drops for the rest of the time I'll be playing.

It's stupid that I should have to limit myself in any way when playing Skyrim, and I believe it just speaks to the poor design of that element of the game.

With all that said, dungeons are still enjoyable for me, due to leveling up in the perk system that I feel Bethesda definitely DID get right. Sorry that you don't seem to agree.

Edited by believer258

@PeasantAbuse said:

Spending 130 hours in a game you don't like is fucking insane.

@xyzygy said:

While the game is good I think it gets much too much praise.

He likes it, he just has several (valid) complaints with it that, in his opinion, make it the most shallow Elder Scrolls game yet. If he didn't like it, he wouldn't have said that it was a good game.

Personally, I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with the game. It's sucked me in like no Elder Scrolls game has before, but the only thing I completely disagree with the OP on is the bit about stats and leveling. I liked being able to suddenly decide to jump into destruction magic after ten hours of working on one-handed.

I also disagree with having to repair things, though if that had been included I wouldn't have had much of a problem with it.

The loot, however, I agree with. There are some great things in the game, but after fifty hours of gameplay you only need to have changed armor sets like twice. Speaking of armor sets, we use to have separate slots for greaves/pants/whatever and armor. What's up with that? I want Morrowind's armor system back. Now, we only have gloves, armor, helmets, and boots. That's FOUR slots. You could include rings and amulets to get six. That's not much at all.

It really seems like if you want the best loot, you have to make it yourself. Which is fine with me, but it would be nice if they would include rare things that just can't be made by you, or different pieces of a rare thing that you need to find all of to use.

Edited by 234r2we232

@PeasantAbuse said:

Spending 130 hours in a game you don't like is fucking insane.

This came up when I was talking to a friend about how it's easy to lose so much time in a game like this. I explained that much like a dog ages at a different rate to humans, Skyrim gameplay requires more hours of input to get a satisfactory session than your average game. I would say the ratio is something about 10 to 1 (i.e. the 1 hour of Saints Row I play is equal to the 10 hours of Skyrim that apparently happened).

What I'm trying to say is, Skyrim is a slow learner.

Posted by ZenaxPure

After reading that it mostly reminds me of how people were so amazed at the perk system when they are just some really boring talent trees that have been in RPGs for like 20 years now, it really confuses me to be entirely honest why people were blown away by the system. 
 
Anyhow, you make a lot of good points, I will tell you that on a personal level I simply enjoyed the exploring part because I love exploring. Playing as a stealth archer I had the pleasure of not dealing with Skyrim's awful combat which probably contributed to me not really caring about what loot I get at the end of a dungeon, because I can one shot just about any enemy in the game with some random glass bow I found and haven't had to self heal in probably the last 20 or so hours I spent with the game. 
 
But you said it yourself, I think most of your problems come from them streamlining a lot of the "hardcore RPG mechanics" that many people love, but to reach a mainstream crowd like Bethesda wants too it's just something that has to be sacrificed.

Posted by xyzygy

@mikey87144: What is this final significant quest you're speaking of??

@PeasantAbuse said:

Spending 130 hours in a game you don't like is fucking insane.

Like others have said, I do like the game. My standards were set too high. The one thing that I think is phenomenal is the landscape, it is so beautiful. I just don't think I could spelunk every dungeon and explore every nook and cranny simply for the sake of exploring. Also, the combat is definitely improved but this is coming from someone who preferred the classic dice roll combat over Skyrim's. So my opinions about the combat might not be in the majority... :P

Posted by Storms
@wolf_blitzer85 said:
but unlike the older games, those random caves just don't draw me in like they used to. I do find myself just wandering around out in the field taking in the sights and avoiding any dungeons. I certainly haven't gotten bored looking at the game as it's gorgeous in spots as the PC has some great mods that really improve the visual quality of the game. It's gotten to the point where I don't even have the compass on anymore. I don't want to know I'm blowing past caves and shit because I just really don't care.
If I had some beverage in my mouth when I read this, I may have spit it out. If I were one to waste precious fluids in response to such things. Which I am not. 
 
Isn't saying Skyrim's dungeons don't draw you in like previous games a bit like saying "Skyrim's terrain is too flat in comparison to older TES games"? I mean, they multiplied their dungeon-creation staff by eight and I can easily see the fruits of that move. Caves and ruins are way more interesting than in Oblivion and especially Morrowind.
 
@believer258 said: 

It really seems like if you want the best loot, you have to make it yourself. Which is fine with me, but it would be nice if they would include rare things that just can't be made by you

Like the leveled Daedric Artifacts? 
 

or different pieces of a rare thing that you need to find all of to use

Like Mehrunes Razor? 
 
@Zenaxzd said:
 But you said it yourself, I think most of your problems come from them streamlining a lot of the "hardcore RPG mechanics" that many people love, but to reach a mainstream crowd like Bethesda wants too it's just something that has to be sacrificed.
The hardcore RPG is still there, even moreso in some ways than the last two games -- we have smithing and cooking now. What Bethesda has done is made Skyrim really "awesome" on the surface. Which could make one think that the awesome surface is the limit to the depth. But you can go much deeper than the badass dragon-killing surface, if you choose. There are plenty of books to read and you can even see Sovngarde and meet the Wolf Queen (two moments that blew me away, after having read about these things for years). 
 
@xyzygy:  
 

The story in Skyrim is short. Very, very short.

I had the game for at least a month before I beat the main quest the first time. It takes as long as you want. You can rush it in about ten hours, complete about 5 other quests during this time and make it 20 hours, take your sweet time and make it 30 hours -- or roleplay a Nord; try to complete Stormcloaks, Companions (now THAT'S a short story) and Main Quest side by side at about an equal pace and make it 150 hours. The length is up to you. 
 

In Morrowind, (And I'm assuming Arena and Daggerfall) there was absolutely no form of enemy scaling.

That's categorically false. It was there in Morrowind, just very subtle. I do agree that it could be even more subtle in Skyrim. But at least the whole minor/major thing has been done away with, allowing you to level up with what you want, instead of forcing you to put things your character doesn't use in there just to level at your own pace. Now the pace is far more natural. 
 
@SpaceInsomniac:  
 

It's stupid that I should have to limit myself in any way when playing Skyrim

It's called roleplaying. You can level up Smithing to 100 over time by crafting things when you find the components and occasionally crafting you and your companion some armor and weapons. Just because you are able to do it much faster, doesn't mean you have to. If your character wouldn't sit there all day operating at a profit loss by buying leather and selling leather armor, then just don't do it. Now, I *would* like it if BethSoft had tweaked the system to keep people from leveling Smithing by spamming bracers -- but it's not really their job to force people to get the most out of it by roleplaying. 
 

@xyzygy:  
 My standards were set too high.

Nobody's expectations could have been higher than mine. And I am utterly satisfied. I knew there were going to be hundreds of things about the game that I would like to be different or better. I also knew there were going to be thousands and thousands of things that are excellently done. I just focus on enjoying all the things that are right and hardcore roleplaying.
Posted by xyzygy

@Storms: As far as the story goes, I too had done many quests before it. In fact, I completed every guild quest and many random quests before even starting the story part (talk to that man's cousin in Riverwood was where I was at) and then went back to it hoping for something at least a little more lengthy and/or exciting than what I got.

As for the leveling, in Skyrim it works like this: dungeons and areas have a set margin to which the enemies level. Some dungeons are between 25 and 30 for example. So if you were level 1, the enemies would be level 25. If you were level 27, they'd be level 27 and if you were level 35 they'd be 30.

I'm not complaining about the levelling, it's the fact that they removed stats (and substituted them with perks), skill limitations and classes. The only reason I mentioned levelling was to show the difference of how they all worked between Morrowind and Oblivion.

Edited by Neeshka

I strongly agree with everything you said : Failing narrative elements, Bad level scaling and perk system, Lack of incentive.

But it's not just that. There are a lot of other things wrong with the game. For me recent games that held a lot more appeal from last year were Arkham City, Deus Ex HR, Witcher 2, Dead Space 2, Portal 2; and maybe even the sp campaign for mw3 and saints row 3.

Other things about skyrim that you may have already mentioned:

1) The combat: Why is it so easy ? Why is there no balance. Why does a 2012 game not have enemies with a semblance of AI during battles ? Why does melee combat encompass all of 2 attacks ? I'll never get answers to these questions I suppose. Unless you actively try to make your character a walking gimpmobile after around level 20 everything dies in a couple of hits. Every enemy is approached and dealt with in the EXACT same way. Dragons are so easy they are a pathetic insult to such a magnificent fantasy creature. Why does combat force you to constantly pause and completely break the flow of a real time game ? Why does it always feel so awkward and artificial ? Why are finishing animations so horrendously done and lifted straight from fallout 3 ? Arkham city did combat animations and slow motion finishers perfectly; they look and feel fluid and the combat is so so much better. Why is it so easy to just pause and use potions without restriction ? Companions are almost always just an annoyance and get in the way, and funnily they don't scale ....

2) More About Perks: why ever level perks like speech, lockpicking, pickpocketing. Not only that but even every tree is rife with utterly useless branches that no sensible person would ever take. There really isn't that much choice as most perks are just intentionally designed to be rubbish. And then there's perk trees with absolutely ridiculous modifiers like 15x dagger bonus, or 30% crit bonus with swords.

3) Stealth is atrocious. It's not natural and there is no skill involved like in any well made game with stealth in it - spinter cell, arkham asylum/city, FEAR, Crysis, Thief, Assasin's Creed and many many others. Why bother with light armor at all when heavy armor is vastly superior with no perks invested ?

4) Crafting makes all loot in the game useless. Like you said this takes away a huge chunk of incentive in even doing any quest or killing enemies in dungeons. Why bother when you can sit in whiterun and make god mode stuff ?

5) The UI and Bugs: need I say more ?

6) The lack of good, memorable characters and bland voice acting. Every video game seems to have interesting characters; especially RPGs. Where's the equivalent of minsc and boo, viconia, aribeth, tomi undergallows, triss merigold, hk47, iorveth and saskia, or deekin ? I just don't understand the concept of an RPG in a fantasy setting without interesting characters.

7) Bad quests. Absolutely horrendous main quest like you mentioned. The guild quests are awful too sadly and a far cry from morrowind. Even the daedric quests; although better are just as mindless and additionally pretentious nonsense.

Sadly all this praise for skyrim has made me lose all hope with gaming journalism, given how much undue praise it has been getting.

The truth is that Skyrim is a very mediocre game, which unfortunately still fails to solve critical problems the series had since forever, while also dumbing down here and there.

Finally there is to say that the Skyrim fanbase is terrible, is mostly composed of MMO rejects, the cawadooty fanbois of RPG, and people who think Roleplaying means ignoring flaws and piss poor RPG elements and just LARPing around aimless in a hiking sim (or mucking about VR program).

Where is my Baldur's gate 3 ? Anyway I'm probably going to enjoy Diablo 3 when that comes out, and maybe mass effect 3, bioshock and kingdoms of amanlur.

Edited by ZenaxPure
@Storms said:


@Zenaxzd said:

 But you said it yourself, I think most of your problems come from them streamlining a lot of the "hardcore RPG mechanics" that many people love, but to reach a mainstream crowd like Bethesda wants too it's just something that has to be sacrificed.
The hardcore RPG is still there, even moreso in some ways than the last two games -- we have smithing and cooking now. What Bethesda has done is made Skyrim really "awesome" on the surface. Which could make one think that the awesome surface is the limit to the depth. But you can go much deeper than the badass dragon-killing surface, if you choose. There are plenty of books to read and you can even see Sovngarde and meet the Wolf Queen (two moments that blew me away, after having read about these things for years).  
 
I am talking about RPG mechanics, not anything story related, not dragons, not books. Purely things about RPGs that RPG fans like, all the nerdy number and management stuff. 
 
Personally I am not as bummed they removed actual numerical stats from the game like xyzygy as I do like the approach of just "doing what I want" to get stronger but the stuff I go to RPGs for are really not in Skyrim. Like I've put something around 80 or so hours into the game myself and what bums me out personally is that I've only changed armor twice and my bow 3 times and I have not gained a single new ability that actually makes me feel stronger and I've consistently killed everything in the game except dragons in 1-3 arrows since the opening dungeon.
 
I really have no sense of growth in Skyrim, 50 or so hours on my archer and I feel like the exact same person I started the game as.
Posted by believer258

@Storms said:

@wolf_blitzer85 said:
but unlike the older games, those random caves just don't draw me in like they used to. I do find myself just wandering around out in the field taking in the sights and avoiding any dungeons. I certainly haven't gotten bored looking at the game as it's gorgeous in spots as the PC has some great mods that really improve the visual quality of the game. It's gotten to the point where I don't even have the compass on anymore. I don't want to know I'm blowing past caves and shit because I just really don't care.
If I had some beverage in my mouth when I read this, I may have spit it out. If I were one to waste precious fluids in response to such things. Which I am not.

Isn't saying Skyrim's dungeons don't draw you in like previous games a bit like saying "Skyrim's terrain is too flat in comparison to older TES games"? I mean, they multiplied their dungeon-creation staff by eight and I can easily see the fruits of that move. Caves and ruins are way more interesting than in Oblivion and especially Morrowind.

@believer258 said:

It really seems like if you want the best loot, you have to make it yourself. Which is fine with me, but it would be nice if they would include rare things that just can't be made by you

Like the leveled Daedric Artifacts?

or different pieces of a rare thing that you need to find all of to use

Like Mehrunes Razor?

@Zenaxzd said:
But you said it yourself, I think most of your problems come from them streamlining a lot of the "hardcore RPG mechanics" that many people love, but to reach a mainstream crowd like Bethesda wants too it's just something that has to be sacrificed.
The hardcore RPG is still there, even moreso in some ways than the last two games -- we have smithing and cooking now. What Bethesda has done is made Skyrim really "awesome" on the surface. Which could make one think that the awesome surface is the limit to the depth. But you can go much deeper than the badass dragon-killing surface, if you choose. There are plenty of books to read and you can even see Sovngarde and meet the Wolf Queen (two moments that blew me away, after having read about these things for years).

@xyzygy:

The story in Skyrim is short. Very, very short.

I had the game for at least a month before I beat the main quest the first time. It takes as long as you want. You can rush it in about ten hours, complete about 5 other quests during this time and make it 20 hours, take your sweet time and make it 30 hours -- or roleplay a Nord; try to complete Stormcloaks, Companions (now THAT'S a short story) and Main Quest side by side at about an equal pace and make it 150 hours. The length is up to you.


In Morrowind, (And I'm assuming Arena and Daggerfall) there was absolutely no form of enemy scaling.

That's categorically false. It was there in Morrowind, just very subtle. I do agree that it could be even more subtle in Skyrim. But at least the whole minor/major thing has been done away with, allowing you to level up with what you want, instead of forcing you to put things your character doesn't use in there just to level at your own pace. Now the pace is far more natural.

@SpaceInsomniac:

It's stupid that I should have to limit myself in any way when playing Skyrim

It's called roleplaying. You can level up Smithing to 100 over time by crafting things when you find the components and occasionally crafting you and your companion some armor and weapons. Just because you are able to do it much faster, doesn't mean you have to. If your character wouldn't sit there all day operating at a profit loss by buying leather and selling leather armor, then just don't do it. Now, I *would* like it if BethSoft had tweaked the system to keep people from leveling Smithing by spamming bracers -- but it's not really their job to force people to get the most out of it by roleplaying.

@xyzygy:
My standards were set too high.

Nobody's expectations could have been higher than mine. And I am utterly satisfied. I knew there were going to be hundreds of things about the game that I would like to be different or better. I also knew there were going to be thousands and thousands of things that are excellently done. I just focus on enjoying all the things that are right and hardcore roleplaying.

You sound irrationally pissed.

"I didn't like the dungeons in Skyrim, they were boring to me."

"OMFGWTFBBQ!? THEY HIRED EIGHT MORE PEOPLE TO WORK ON THEM! YOU MUST LIKE THEM!"

Yes, at bits you came across like an unabashed fanboy. One who can correctly write, but an unabashed fanboy nonetheless.

With that said, let me get down to my actual response. Even if there is some loot, there isn't much. Even with the loot that is there, there isn't much that will really help you a whole hell of a lot. You could spend a hundred hours in the game with leather armor and the swords you picked up along the way. Base, common stuff. There's no "rare swords" or set of "uber-armor" that you really need to do anything, just some stuff that can break the game if you do a few quests.

Posted by Tomkang

I just hit the 100 hour mark. I agree ES games stories are super short. I spent and enjoyed the majority of my time doing side quests and exploration. I love the feeling of exploration and great loot :)

People are allowed to dislike Skyrim even though it is critical acclaimed. I agree that the dungeons are uninspired, combat is more of a chore now. Thankfully as an Orc 2 handed warrior I steamroll everything in 2-3 hits.

I am a sucker for loot, so I enjoy playing WoW, Skyrim and hopefully KoA:R

Posted by Neeshka

@Tomkang said:

I am a sucker for loot, so I enjoy playing WoW, Skyrim and hopefully KoA:R

Smithing, Enchanting and alchemy completely invaldiate any loot in the game; even if you level them to 50-60 and put a couple of perks in them. Games like Diablo, Diablo 2 along with their innumerable clones, borderlands and most new RPGs got the "loot" aspect right. It's a really simple thing to design really. But something bethesda effed it up royally.

Posted by Tomkang

@Neeshka: Don't get me wrong, I am well aware that the best loot is made with easy crafting (smithing to 100 using iron daggers). I enjoy finding unique loot even if it is bad loot. My house is Markarth has a manquin equip with all the daedric princes apparel and the weapon plaques with daedric weapons. Nightingale armour is useless for my character but it looks cool to display.

I am an obsessive collector. I have like 200 dragon bones and scales that I will never use. In MMORPGs I will spend a good amount of currency to buy the most useless items ie. in WoW i collected every single shape/form shifting item and just run about dressed as santa.

Posted by Neeshka

@Storms said:

Like the leveled Daedric Artifacts?

Like Mehrunes Razor?

The hardcore RPG is still there, even moreso in some ways than the last two games -- we have smithing and cooking now. What Bethesda has done is made Skyrim really "awesome" on the surface. Which could make one think that the awesome surface is the limit to the depth. But you can go much deeper than the badass dragon-killing surface, if you choose. There are plenty of books to read and you can even see Sovngarde and meet the Wolf Queen (two moments that blew me away, after having read about these things for years).

I had the game for at least a month before I beat the main quest the first time. It takes as long as you want. You can rush it in about ten hours, complete about 5 other quests during this time and make it 20 hours, take your sweet time and make it 30 hours -- or roleplay a Nord; try to complete Stormcloaks, Companions (now THAT'S a short story) and Main Quest side by side at about an equal pace and make it 150 hours. The length is up to you.

Levelled daedric artifacts and mehrunes razor are complete junk if you have 100 smith/100 ench and use extremely powerful enchants like paralysis/fire+paralysis/soul tap. The proc rate on mehrunes razor is absolutely awful and the damage itself is quite low since it's a dagger. Daggers/thief gameplay is suboptimal in skyrim anyway.

If Baldur's Gate 2 is one the best RPGs ever made it's quite obvious that things like a solid central story, good and memorable characters and an in-depth stat system with involved combat are things that should be in any good RPG. Skyrim has none of these. RPG != larping sim.

The companion quest is awful. The entire werewolf thing was forced into the story; it doesn't really mean anything to the plot and we know almost nothing about their opponents the silver hand, their motives or anything about the history of the companions. And when you finish their quests; you become their glorious leader and get sent out on pest control radiant quests.....

How is that a good quest.

Posted by Neeshka

@Tomkang said:

@Neeshka: Don't get me wrong, I am well aware that the best loot is made with easy crafting (smithing to 100 using iron daggers). I enjoy finding unique loot even if it is bad loot. My house is Markarth has a manquin equip with all the daedric princes apparel and the weapon plaques with daedric weapons. Nightingale armour is useless for my character but it looks cool to display.

I am an obsessive collector. I have like 200 dragon bones and scales that I will never use. In MMORPGs I will spend a good amount of currency to buy the most useless items ie. in WoW i collected every single shape/form shifting item and just run about dressed as santa.

lol, yea i know a lot of people that do those things in WoW; I heard someone in my guild in WoW was trying to grind out the "insane" achievement with rep haha ....

For me though the loot in skyrim has no charm. In Diablo 1 or Diablo 2 getting a unique gold item with a weird name used to feel special; that element isn't there in skyrim.

Posted by xyzygy

@Neeshka: I completely agree with your arguments as well, I just did not want to have a tl;dr post. Even though it was still pretty lengthy. I also love your comparison of Skyrim to a hiking sim. I'm definitely gonna use that one sometime soon :)

Posted by huntad

I didn't have such a bad time with the exploring, because I was only able to play about 35 hours of it. There is one thing that started bothering me though, and it's how limited the stories are. With such an open, huge world it had me questioning the parts that weren't so open. Namely, the stories that Bethesda have crafted are very strict and often times don't fit with my character. My character was a knight with healing magic. Apparently, he's also a murderer for the Dark Brotherhood, a Thief, and a magician?

I don't think it's a huge deal, but it bothered me specifically. There is a quest for going against the Dark Brotherhood, but I don't think there are any for the companions, thieves, etc. If there are, that's great. But if they're anything like the Dark Brotherhood, they're kind of shallow and only rob you of a questline that is actually very good, but just made me feel a little weird. It's been said time and time again on the Bombcast, but it's just jarring having a guy who's trying to save the world going around killing people because it's part of questlines.

Posted by ZenaxPure
@huntad said:

I didn't have such a bad time with the exploring, because I was only able to play about 35 hours of it. There is one thing that started bothering me though, and it's how limited the stories are. With such an open, huge world it had me questioning the parts that weren't so open. Namely, the stories that Bethesda have crafted are very strict and often times don't fit with my character. My character was a knight with healing magic. Apparently, he's also a murderer for the Dark Brotherhood, a Thief, and a magician?

 

This actually bothered me a bit as well. I have not been able to bring myself to finish the thief guild stuff because to me they seem like a bunch of assholes. I wish there was some sort of quest or anything to bring them down instead of only being able to help them (perhaps there is later on, I dunno, I don't want to progress any further). There really isn't a ton of actual choice inside the stories themselves, it's more about picking which stories you want to see through.
Posted by spazmaster666

I enjoyed Skyrim's leveling system more than Oblivion's as it combines the best parts of the perk system in Fallout 3 and the level-each-skill-as-you-use-it system in Oblivion. And despite the main storyline being kind of short, I still enjoyed it much more than I did Oblivion's storyline, which was boring as hell. Overall, I think that Skyrim, while definitely flawed, is still a big improvement over Oblivion, which is clearly what they were going for in the first place, rather than trying to make it a reinvention of the Elder Scrolls franchise. I don't mind that some enemies don't scale since I want to feel like a powerful character in the late game whereas in Oblivion, you ended up encountering random bandits that have incredibly high stats and great gear because of the scaling. And that's not really much fun.

Posted by jorbear

Skyrim is cool, yo.

Posted by Storms
@believer258:  
I'm pretty sure you've misunderstood my tone. I'm not pissed. But yeah, I am a fan of Skyrim (how's that for unabashed?). And the loot doesn't bother me -- I don't always play a character that does smithing, in which case Dawnbreaker is a pretty great find. And when I do play a blacksmith, eventually my character gets so good at it that I make legendary armor and weapons, which I like. When I roleplay, everything in Skyrim works *perfectly*. 
 
It just seems obvious to me and most other reviewers and players that the dungeons in Skyrim are a vast improvement over the borefests that I avoided like the plague in Morrowind and Oblivion (both games that are in my top ten of all time). 
 
@Neeshka
I'm pretty sure we fundamentally disagree on everything, ever. You are really dead set on hating the game so I won't point-by-point your list of (what seem to me to be) irrational complaints. But I will note that LARP stands for Live Action roleplaying, which is probably why I think of Skyrim as a good RPG. But to me, every Elder Scrolls game has felt like a roleplaying game that strives for a sense of realism for the sake of immersion -- how is Skyrim worse for continuing that? No need to reply.  
 
@Zenaxzd
 I've always liked the stats and numbers aspect of RPG games, but a lot of people don't; and I don't think that lists of numbers are crucial to the genre, just common within it. Besides, they've just hidden some of the unnecessary numbers. Also, you may feel like your character hasn't grown, but I feel like all 6 of mine have. I can't really speak to what you feel, but I certainly "feel" like my character's gotten stronger after I get to rank 5 in Barbarian, and my archer certainly feels stronger with Eagle Eye and Steady Hand. Besides, leveling isn't the beginning and end of character growth in RPGs.
Posted by Storms
@huntad@Zenaxzd:  
 
I agree that TES could improve more in creating choices within quests. I think they spent so much time stuffing the game to the gills with quests that they eliminated some branching options (visible in the Thorald Grey-Mane quest, where you can ~ in a writ for Thorald's release but there's no way to complete the quest except storming Northwatch). 
 
However, I never once thought that I should be able to join the Dark Brotherhood and be a pacifist. When I play a character that's not a murderer or a thief, I don't join the Brotherhood or Guild in that playthrough. When my character is not a Hero, I don't do the main quest in that playthrough. Simple.
Posted by ZenaxPure
@Storms: How do you even tell different ranks of mobs anyway? Because my character is in his 40s now and I think they've changed (at least their names have) and yet I still 1 to 2 shot them as a stealth archer. That is basically what I am getting at, despite enemies supposedly getting stronger I have gone through the entire game killing them the same way with the same amount of arrows. It doesn't seem any different than when I went through that first cave and that dude told me to sneak by the bear but I just stealth killed it. 
 
To be honest its boring.
Posted by Hailinel

@Storms said:

@believer258:
I'm pretty sure you've misunderstood my tone. I'm not pissed. But yeah, I am a fan of Skyrim (how's that for unabashed?). And the loot doesn't bother me -- I don't always play a character that does smithing, in which case Dawnbreaker is a pretty great find. And when I do play a blacksmith, eventually my character gets so good at it that I make legendary armor and weapons, which I like. When I roleplay, everything in Skyrim works *perfectly*.

It just seems obvious to me and most other reviewers and players that the dungeons in Skyrim are a vast improvement over the borefests that I avoided like the plague in Morrowind and Oblivion (both games that are in my top ten of all time).

In my time with Skyrim, the caves and dungeons I came across were in general not that interesting. Branching paths were few and generally short. A lot of caves were essentially just straight shots. Two months after last playing it, I can think of only two caves/dungeons that I found particularly interesting and that stood out. The rest were just kind of there.

Posted by addictedtopinescent

I think you might be exaggerating the part about the skills and everything, if you really invest in every skill (or try and do like 3 different play styles) with the same character you would be spreading yourself too thin and making a not very competent character. I have a stealth character (perks mostly in archery, sneak, one-handed and light armor) and I doubt I would be able to just switch over to playing some mage variant. I might be wrong though, I never actually tried to make a jack of all trades type character.

And while I really love the game, I can understand some of your points, I don't really disagree with them. I mostly loot things for money, and haven't really gotten into the main story yet, it doesn't seem that interesting compared to the guild/deadric/other quests.

Posted by Tim_the_Corsair

I agree regarding the lack of loot, and that RPG mechanics-wise, Skyrim isn't a patch on Witcher, Dragon Age, NWN, BG2, etc, etc.

In saying that, however, the actual Roleplaying side of the game is enough that I am really enjoying it. I have set myself the task of playing a Necromancer who does not wear armour, predominantly uses offensive magic, and is generally a bad guy who nonetheless has a burgeoning sense of conscience growing inside him.

I also just started an alt Orc warrior who wears heavy armour, uses an axe and shield (but when he goes berserk, twin axes), and crafts like a motherfucker. He will also only take other orcs as a companion, and hates Nords and the Stormcloaks for their racism, as well as the Thalmor and won't hesitate to kill them when confronted.

Now I am findings limited Roleplaying of these characters (ie I'm setting limits upon what I do, rather than saying "verily and foresooth" to my tv) to be making the game much more enjoyable, as it adds a layer of challenge and depth that the game itself is not so much missing, as much as it tries its best to not provide it by making the jack of all trades option have zero consequence, as do any moral decisions.

Essentially I am making my own structured RPG inside the Skyrim sandbox, and I think that's awesome, but I understand completely that my way isn't for everyone.

Posted by Neeshka

Enemies don't really scale much; the game just picks from an increasing set of types. So you have vanilla draugr, and then restless/wight/scourge/overlord/deathlord. The choice of the size of this set is done strictly on your character's level and the number of types is obviously limited. Bethesda also assumes you have a fairly random selection of talents and don't specialize or use sensible perk combinations so that people that choose to go with a mish-mash of non-combat talents and dabble in a lot of unsynergistic perks don't get boned. On the flip-side though if you do so everything is trivialized.

Posted by Storms
@Zenaxzd:  
 
Isn't the point of playing a stealth archer to 1 or 2 shot everything so you never have to do open combat like a melee character? Besides, even with archery and stealth leveled high, my sneak archer character still has plenty of enemies that require several hits, so I think you may be exaggerating. 
 
@Hailinel:  
 
I understand that not every dungeon in Skyrim is the best thing ever. The discussion, though, is about Skyrim's dungeons vs. Oblivion and Morrowind. And the simplest way to highlight the superiority of Skyrim's dungeons is to say that I'm actually going to be able to remember unique things about them 5 years from now, whereas all the dungeons of III and IV have melded together in my memory. Skyrim: Wolfskull Cave, Blackreach, the cave with ships trapped inside it (Bethesda loves the Goonies, it seems). III and IV: Bland and unremarkable, every one. 
Posted by xyzygy

@Storms: I disagree entirely. While Oblivion's dungeons were completely copy and paste (almost, not to the extent of Dragon Age 2 literal copy and paste), Morrowind's dungeon's always had their quirks. There were always items like keys or weird little unique things hidden away and they were full of strange or hilarious NPCs. Morrowind also had their dungeons hidden much better, like underwater.

Remember Gambolpuddy? That was just one example of the strange things you'd find in Morrowind.

Posted by Neeshka

I recent got the shivering isles expansion for Oblivion and the quest/setting is far superior to anything I've seen in skyrim. And yea morrowind not only had better quests and dungeons; but also vastly superior writing, more varied voice acting, better music (sorry but skyrim seems to be just the same ambient theme everywhere); and most importantly a very alien world with really fresh and new enemy types; not the same cliched crap you see in skyrim.@Storms said:

Skyrim: Wolfskull Cave, Blackreach, the cave with ships trapped inside it (Bethesda loves the Goonies, it seems). III and IV: Bland and unremarkable, every one.

Yeah I liked the cave with ships in it; blackreach was nice but totally pointless - unfinished perhaps ? I also liked that one quest where you get drunk and sent to a misty grove; the aesthetics on that one were really great. Some of the daedra quests were alright I suppose. But the problem is that's just only a handful of the content. The rest of the content was just really lackluster in comparison.

Posted by Neeshka

@Storms said:

@Neeshka:
You are really dead set on hating the game so I won't point-by-point your list of (what seem to me to be) irrational complaints. But I will note that LARP stands for Live Action roleplaying, which is probably why I think of Skyrim as a good RPG. But to me, every Elder Scrolls game has felt like a roleplaying game that strives for a sense of realism for the sake of immersion.

Nope I'm not really set on "hating" the game; I'm just eager to point out very obvious flaws that everyone seems to just ignore "because it's skyrim"; but when the same flaws crop up in other games they get universally panned. I don't think any of my complaints are irrational at all or wildly subjective; and a lot of people I know that avoided the game list similar problems.

Nope I mentioned LARPing because LARPers are a very strange niche of gamers. Most gamers play games for good gameplay, but to most LARPers gameplay is secondary. LARPers in WoW for example are the bizarre demographic that sit in inns and act out "roleplay" and largely ignore the actual game - raiding, pvp, levelling up. A lot of such people are found in the new star wars mmo. A quick glance at the popularity of certain mods on skyrim nexus proves this quite well; and this is a tradition seen in previous beth games too. A lot of these people fanatically support bethesda.

-About realism and immersion:

Other than occasionally beautiful locales and a decent graphical aesthetic with somewhat current gen graphics; I really don't get the immersion in the game. Dull lifeless characters, boring quests and no sense of difficulty. Every time I open a door and things go flying all over; or I see a levitating old woman, or dragons flying backwards; any kind of "immersion" for me is instantly lost.

Edited by ZenaxPure
@Storms said:

@Zenaxzd:  
 
Isn't the point of playing a stealth archer to 1 or 2 shot everything so you never have to do open combat like a melee character? Besides, even with archery and stealth leveled high, my sneak archer character still has plenty of enemies that require several hits, so I think you may be exaggerating. 
 

I am certainly not exaggerating, I started playing as a 2 handed character but after getting fed up with how clunky it was I dropped the save file and made an archer. Perhaps the point of it is one shotting everything but that's poor game design if so. I mean arguably I could play something else but it was the only "fun" I was having with the combat.  Also I suppose I could crank up the difficulty but from what little I played the game doesn't seem very well balanced at max, so I just stay around medium.
Edited by Storms
@Zenaxzd: So when you're trying to be sneaky and kill things from a distance without being seen, you should actually be constantly forced into knockdown drag-out skirmishes or it's bad design? That doesn't sound right.
 
There are still some enemies I'm not sure you can 1-hit. Dremora Valkynaz in one hit? Morokei, Vokun, Krosis and Volsung? The Forsworn village in front of Sky Haven Temple with the Briarhearts and Hagravens? 
 
By the way, is that a Mario version of Trollface in your avatar?
Posted by owl_of_minerva

Good arguments, the things you wanted to have in Skyrim I also wanted - more interesting loot, less stripped-down mechanics, better quests, more of a main story, etc. The crucial improvements they made on Oblivion have their limits as well. Although the scaling is more subtle, many enemies have hard caps, afaik only the human enemies scale with you. In any case, dual-wielding enchanted epic Daedric weapons there is nothing more to do - the quests are shit, the loot is shit, and the characters are shit. There isn't an iota of interest to be had in radiant quests that go on spewing out inane quest junk infinitely. What's the point of playing on? I don't feel like hiking or decorating my house. I played a lot of the game but came out of the haze of addiction unfulfilled, and will probably never go back to the game ever again (and I replay games frequently). I enjoyed the game but it is fundamentally forgettable. Bethesda's amazing feat was somehow making a shallow formula "immersive" (awful word) and addictive without having designed anything to make that experience rewarding, except the aesthetics.

I think I might stick to the Gothics (excepting Arcania) and Risen from here on in.

Posted by Neeshka

I've never played any of the gothic games and tended to stay away from them since they use gamebryo; is there any particular one I should try 1st ?

Posted by Storms

  
 
I'm tempted to just post this video and say argument over: 
 
  

  Perhaps it would be better to direct you to the "Screenshots" thread in the Skyrim forum. But while you already recognise the aesthetic beauty of Skyrim, you don't seem to understand that this beauty is merely the most visible aspect that belies the tremendous amount of work that went in to this game. Or, rather, you do not care -- your minds are made up. For whatever reason: either because Skyrim is officially mainstream and that means it sucks, or it just got too many rave reviews and Tall Poppy Syndrome has taken effect. I came to this conclusion because almost none of the complaints here are actual flaws with the game, but preferences at best, things that will get better with advances in technology available to console gamers, at worst.  One guy here seems to think the game is both too easy if he plays an Adept as a sneak archer (apparently doesn't want his stealth character to rely on stealth) AND too hard (well, it takes too many hits if I turn the difficulty up).
 
If you were to give Skyrim a fair review, you'd see the forest for the trees. But instead of looking down at the lush pine forest from a high cliff and admiring the atmosphere, you're down in the dirt looking for something to hate about each and every tree, even though most of the trees are just fine. 
 
So I could point out that the visual beauty you admit to is only the first well-done thing in the game; the next being the music, then the lore, then the details, such as that floating mystery sphere in the game with all the strange writing on it, or the inside of Azura's Star... I could go on, but I'd certainly be wasting my time. Despite the fact that there's no other game out there (at least until KoA comes out) that even tries to do what Bethesda does, you're going to act like this game is "shit" as owl_of_minerva put it, after "emerging from the haze of addiction". What else am I going to play, Arkham City? That's fun for a little bit -- but still not half the game (I would say literally, but it surely has less than half of the content) Skyrim is, and you're stuck playing Batman characters to boot.
Posted by InternetCrab

The main quests are short as hell, but i still think that it deserved the GOTY.

Posted by Neeshka

@Storms said:

Perhaps it would be better to direct you to the "Screenshots" thread in the Skyrim forum. But while you already recognise the aesthetic beauty of Skyrim, you don't seem to understand that this beauty is merely the most visible aspect that belies the tremendous amount of work that went in to this game. Or, rather, you do not care -- your minds are made up. For whatever reason: either because Skyrim is officially mainstream and that means it sucks, or it just got too many rave reviews and Tall Poppy Syndrome has taken effect. I came to this conclusion because almost none of the complaints here are actual flaws with the game, but preferences at best, things that will get better with advances in technology available to console gamers, at worst. One guy here seems to think the game is both too easy if he plays an Adept as a sneak archer (apparently doesn't want his stealth character to rely on stealth) AND too hard (well, it takes too many hits if I turn the difficulty up). If you were to give Skyrim a fair review, you'd see the forest for the trees. But instead of looking down at the lush pine forest from a high cliff and admiring the atmosphere, you're down in the dirt looking for something to hate about each and every tree, even though most of the trees are just fine. So I could point out that the visual beauty you admit to is only the first well-done thing in the game; the next being the music, then the lore, then the details, such as that floating mystery sphere in the game with all the strange writing on it, or the inside of Azura's Star... I could go on, but I'd certainly be wasting my time. Despite the fact that there's no other game out there (at least until KoA comes out) that even tries to do what Bethesda does, you're going to act like this game is "shit" as owl_of_minerva put it, after "emerging from the haze of addiction". What else am I going to play, Arkham City? That's fun for a little bit -- but still not half the game (I would say literally, but it surely has less than half of the content) Skyrim is, and you're stuck playing Batman characters to boot.

Skyrim's aesthetics are good; but not as good as you make them out to be. It's a very generic alpine theme with LoTR tones. None of the enemies are new or innovative; everything is very cliched. Morrowind created a far more alien and immersive world. The negativity towards skyrim has nothing to do with how successful it is. Many of bethesda's critics like tons of other mainstream games. I'll admit that I like WoW, SC2, Call of Duty games, Dead Space, Portal 2, Witcher 2, Deus Ex HR and Mass Effect; which are all very much mainstream.The complaints *are* about actual objective flaws with the game, very few of the points here are "preferences".

A beautiful world to explore with occasionally pleasant aesthetics and atmosphere don't alone make a great game.

Music - Jeremy Soule is a great composer and there are a few good tracks in skyrim; but the music of skyrim is definitely not his best; even icewind dale and neverwinter nights had far better examples of his work. The music in skyrim never really stands out other than the main theme.

"floating mystery sphere": the psijic order and sphere narratives are unfinished. The whole narrative comes to a grinding halt towards the end and neither seems to have any importance in the game world. There really aren't that many details of interest like there were in morrowind or even sections of oblivion (shivering isles mainly). The number of really good quest chains is very limited. A big problem with skyrim's quests is none of them have any sense of urgency or impact in the world. Even the main quest - alduin is rezzing dragons.... so what ? Guards kill them in a few hits and all they do is fly around and breath fire; why is it even an issue ? Every single quest in this game feels like this. The world isn't about to end, no one is really going to get hurt and no genocide is going to be averted.

About the difficulty: As you tune up the difficulty in skyrim the only thing that changes is enemy health and attack damage. This is also referred to as "health bloat". The AI doesn't improve, your strategies don't change, all that happens is you need to chip away at enemies for longer and higher level enemies have a greater chance to 1 shot you. This doesn't make a game more difficult; just tedious. All difficulties are trivialized with a smart selection of perks and even before that the ability to constantly chug potions.

Money in this game has zero balance and making it is trivially easy; so you can just buy as many health potions as you want fast travelling all over the place. Almost every other potion in the game is junk anyway.

Posted by DystopiaX

Out of that list the loot is pretty much the only thing that I agree with. I never ran into the skills thing because I just did RP like OP said.

Online
Posted by Little_Socrates

I'm interested to read most of the points against Skyrim in this thread, and they're all interesting and valid to me. I don't enjoy smithing, so I haven't done any of it. And I haven't spent a ton of time in Skyrim yet, so I still haven't seen most of the quests involved. As a result, I've rather enjoyed the game because I'm still hooked on delving into dungeons and finding items like the Wabbajack, and the game is easy enough to promote me using weapons I'm not specced in. That was always a big problem in Fallout 3; I specced in small guns because they were the most common and I constantly had to repair them, but as a result I've never used the Mini-Nuke Launcher. I haven't played Oblivion or Morrowind enough to really compare them to Skyrim.

Still, I think you're right that Skyrim is getting too much praise, especially when great games like Saints Row, Bastion, and Batman came out last year. There are a lot of great games other than those that I don't care for, but that's all right too.

Edited by xyzygy

Another issue I want to bring up is the constantly promised fix which is supposedly coming to the PS3 version's lag. If Bethesda doesn't succeed in this it's just another little bit of hope I lose for them.

@Storms: This thread is about how Skyrim disappointed me, hence why I'm only pointing out the negative aspects of the game. The music, while technically well done, doesn't feel inspired in most cases. I can only think of three songs which stood out: Dragonborn song, the field music and the title music.

Keep in mind, the title music is simply a more up-tempo remix of the Morrowind theme with some male chanting thrown in. AND, the field music is repeated OVER... and OVER... and OVER.. so it definitely loses its appeal fast. The Dragonborn song though, is entirely awesome.

I do find that the game runs impressively smooth on the 360 and I think it has some of the best optimization for an open world game, definitely the best we've seen so far. Go to the western valleys and watch the fog in the distance to see what I mean - other games make that stuff look like shit, and while it's still not as good as the PC version obviously, they did a very excellent job in optimizing the game for 360. Can't say much about the PS3 version, but we all know that story.

The lore can be applied to the franchise in general so I don't know why you point that out. Unless you're talking about the exclusive lore parts, like the Dragonborn and the Civil War which is hands down not as interesting as the Morrowind lore - the Ministry of Truth, the Tribunal, The Hunt, the three rival Houses and their share in the land, the more in-depth Dwemer culture (YOU ACTUALLY MEET ONE), the vastly different architecture and enemy types, the Mournhould events, and most importantly the Nerevarine. The whole Dragonborn thing seems to have been directly ripped from the Nerevarine.

Hell, even the lore of what happens to Morrowind after the game is over is more interesting than the lore in Skyrim:

Vivec loses his deity status and, in the process, his powers, sending the Ministry of Truth, of which before Vivec froze was a mass of rock about to crash into Tamriel, back into it's momentum and destroys the city, everyone in it and Vivec himself.

Tell me anything that has to do with the culture and land of Skyrim that is more awesome than that. The closest I can come up with is how the town of Winterhold came to be as it is, and that is so far from the level of awesome as the fate of Vivec.

And at the end of your argument you defend the game simply because it's long? Because all other games are short? Well I just spent between 50-60 hours on Skyward Sword. I've put 150 hours into FFXIII, and it's sequel is coming out within 2 weeks. There are PLENTY of JRPGs with lengthy playtimes. If you're looking for length there is plenty of variety out there. Deus Ex 3 is also great and can be played over in multiple play styles. Dark Souls, which I've put more hours into than any other game this year and has a crazy replayability value.