Skyrim is disappointing : why do reviewers ignore its problems ?

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#1 Edited by Neeshka (118 posts) -

I've put in about 2 week's worth of gaming into Skyrim on the PC. I gave it a fair chance.

However given the massive amount of hype from both the media and fans; I found the game a huge letdown.

Skyrim is a step up from oblivion in a number of ways; the graphics are clearly better; and there are a number of places where exploration is quite charming. Some of the quests' dungeons are also beautiful - misty grove, sheogorath's realm, inside azura's star, the final hagraven cave; most of the spriggan caves; the icy grotto type dungeons and blackreach. The weather effects are superb and some of the vistas from mountaintops are truly gorgeous. Shortcomings with the graphics engine are often remedied with heavy use of particle effects like fog; which actually works out quite well usually.

But that's where it ends for me.

On to the criticisms:

1) UI & Inventory problems.

Bethesda traditionally favors aesthetics instead of functionality. Skyrim takes this approach to extremes.

The skill-tree UI goes for looks above all else, but navigating it often results in going to the wrong branch or the wrong tree. A static system would have been much easier to navigate.

Dialogue options use a list and nested sub-list based system where it's common to click on 1 thing and have something totally different activate. Additionally when opening the trade UI it's easy to close everything by just trying to choose a different category.

Player inventory doesn't have good sorting (by weight, for example); but the biggest gripe is that containers in your "house" have no categorization or sorting whatsoever. So a chest can have 200 items in 1 gigantic list.

Inventory weight is a huge problem in this game. I never had more than 40-50 lbs free in my bags.

What this meant was: 1st dragon kill ---> messy trade with companion; 2nd dragon kill ---> go back home and dump dragon scales/bones.

Inventory systems are supposed to just be limitations on how versatile your character is; or limits on how many consumables you can carry; or a realistic weight simulation. In skyrim it's none of these. It serves only to add a pointless tedium to run to and fro with items to vendor trash them for money. Why not just have extra gold drop off enemies instead of adding infinite junk items?

2) Combat & AI

Combat in skyrim is just too simplistic for a 2011 game. I played a dual wield 1h melee character.

Combat involved the following: Run up to enemy; double power attack (hold down both mouse buttons), nudge back; repeat.

Occasionally early on in the game if an enemy hit me hard; add in the step of navigating through the painful UI and clicking 15 minor health potions.

If you want to do anything else to switch up your play style to add variety : let's say cast a few destruction spells or shoot arrows from ranged; or heal mid-combat?

Well this involves yet again pausing mid-combat and navigating through the favorite menu or spell/item menu.

This greatly hinders the flow of combat and breaks the immersion.

AI - enemies see you, run up to you and flail away. That's it. They don't run away when low on health; find cover; or attack strategically in coordination with there buddies. Nor do they heal themselves.

Companion AI is similarly bad and frequently steps in front of you to take friendly fire and just die : remember that companions do not scale with your level.

Town Guard AI does the same thing and if a dragon attacks, they take fire from you and immediately become hostile.

With sensible perk selection after about level 30 everything seems to just fall over in 1-2 double power attack hits. Ramping up the difficulty just means the same attack strategy; but with more potion spamming.

Also: why are horses immortal tanks?

3) Level Scaling

As you level you are presented with enemies from a growing set of types. Basically the same enemies; but with more health and attack damage. [Draugr - vanilla, restless, wight, scourge, overlord, deathlord; for example]. Each of these subtypes however has a mostly static level. What this means is that difficulty increases erratically; and then just drops off. Since there are no ultimate villains to challenge higher level players.

Since difficulty in skyrim is just health and attack damage bloat; and potions can be chain used without restriction; all that "difficulty" scaling does is increase potion usage at these erratic transitional cusps in the leveling process.

4) OP perks, UP perks, the grind of leveling them and a clear flaw with usage based leveling systems.

As a 1h melee non-stealth character; there really aren't that many logical and useful perks to choose from. Smithing, Enchanting, One-handed, Alchemy, Heavy armor.

The problem is that choosing any 3 of these makes your character incredibly overpowered. You literally kill everything in the game in the span of 1-2 power double attacks.

A lot of perks are completely underpowered and almost useless : lock picking, speech, pickpocketing.

The game in fact actively penalizes choosing non-combat perks since enemies scale and become more powerful; but you do not.

Some perks are inherently "easy" to level : basically any crafting profession; just make 100 daggers and enchant them.

Your core combat mechanic perk is tied to the combat; so that's not so bad.

However anything else feels very artificial and incredibly grindy. This includes sneak, armor and any other combat perk you wouldn't normally use.

The problem is after 100 smith/ench/one-handed; your character just stops leveling. If you want to level you have to start out leveling something you never used; which sucks (since it's at 0 skill).

Heavy/ Light Armor/Block/Sneak are inherently grindy because they level up very slow to begin with; and can be automated by autorunning stealthed to a wall; or engaging a mudcrab and going afk.

5) Economy

Making gold in the game is just too easy. It's never a constraint. You can buy anything whenever you want.

An iron dagger which costs a pittance to make (~10g?) sells for 2000-3000g with dual enchants.

If you want to powerlevel a profession - no worries; npc inventories restock every 48 hours. So fast travel and then wait for 2 minutes at each vendor pitstop. This completely trivializes leveling things like smithing, enchanting and alchemy.

Soul gems were also probably a type of currency; but again trivialized by the above and soul tap enchants; or just going to the mages in winterhold that seem to have an infinite supply.

Another thing I could never quite understand is the reasoning behind gold limits on npc's themselves. Does it add to the fun in any way?

6) How Smithing & Encanting makes loot irrelevant - leads to lack of incentive

Smithing and Enchanting let you make ultimate weapons; with the stats and bonuses better than even the best artifacts available from the game. You choose your weapon type, upgrade it to the fullest and the enchants. The randomness of loot is gone. And with that the incentive to kill bigger and badder enemies goes too.

Typically RPGs use loot as a form of character progression; but in skyrim loot becomes irrelevant with the most obvious 2 perks.

7) Bugs, constant saving/loading/reloading

I probably don't need to elaborate on this it's quite well documented. Personally I've had my fair share of CTDs; rages because of lost saves or having to redo a dungeon.

Dragons flying backwards and every item in rooms going flying when i open doors are probably highlights.

8) Voice Acting and the lifelessness of npc's

Just like every other bethesda game there are a few great voice actors that do a couple of lines and then the vast majority is done by cheaper VA's that sounds tired and lazy. Accents are almost universally terrible and un-scandinavian; and the arnold austrian accent is also quite common (austrian=/=scandinavian).

Some notable examples:

Farengar saying "Have you come to Dragonsreach to discuss the ongoing hos(h)tilities like the rest of the rest of the great warriors?"

Erandur the dunmer mage companion frequently changes accents abruptly between a normal British accent and then heavy fake cockney.

Combined with the lack of facial expressions and rigidity of npc models; and lazy VA; most npc's seem very drab and lifeless. Also the fish-eye stare is quite unnerving.

9) Character animations and finishers

Bethesda still uses an upgraded version of Gamebryo and bizarre ragdoll death physics are very common. NPCs are still expressionless. It's absurd to have an RPG without facial expressions in 2011.

Running up mountains/inclines still is incredibly awkwardly done.

10) This is the first game where dragons become a pest

Dragons are supposed to be powerful, epic creatures; that instill fear in the hearts of people that see them. In skyrim dragons just fall over if you hide behind a rock and then allow them to land. They are easier to kill than city guards....

For me they actually die in 2 hits; and even the guards can whittle their health down.

Why are dragons a threat again ?

11) Disappointing and cliched questlines, fedex radiant quests and lack of clear C&C.

The main quest is so bad in most bethesda games; fans "brag" about spending 150 hours or more in the game "without even touching the mq". Bethesda uses the "if it's not broken don't fix it" rule so they don't care to make the MQ more interesting. So it still is the same old hero saves the world from dragons (which die in 2 hits btw and aren't even a threat to anyone).

There are tons and tons of filler quests that involve fast traveling from point A to point B to deliver an item or murder/steal something.

Finishing the main quest or any of the guild quest doesn't really have a noticeable impact on the game; you just get a bunch of radiant fetch quests or pest control jobs (companions). Choosing a faction doesn't really change anything. There are many choices in skyrim; but little in the way of consequences.

12) Puzzles

Puzzles consist of a claw which tells you the order in which to move 3 rotating disks to a door; or where you spin 4 pillars with animal carvings. However the right selection is on a picture right behind them. And it's this same thing every other dungeon. Not only is it boring; there is no challenge since the answer is just handed to you. Why bother implementing this ?

Anyway that's that. Bethesda excels at creating vast open and mostly beautiful worlds for a player to mess around in for weeks together. Skyrim does this very well.

But to me Skyrim is just a hiking and junk collecting simulator; something that would appeal to LARPers or people looking for an aimless single player mmorpg experience.

But as a video game; Skyrim is a huge disappointment.

#2 Posted by Gnomicidal (96 posts) -

I must say I agree with almost everything you said, but didn't know how to say a lot of it. I just ... stopped playing one day after I was killing everything in 2 hits on Master and wondered why I was trying to progress at all. The game is not balanced at all. Making a gazillion daggers should not level you up to 100. You can't even do that in an easy game like WOW. At some point, daggers should be "green" or "grey" items and you should need to create and enchant increasingly more complex items. And locking yourself off from these things is a cop out - it was just a poor game design decision. 
 
Maybe I'll go back some day, but for now, New Vegas is an infinitely better game in my opinion.

#3 Posted by Cramsy (1176 posts) -

@Gnomicidal said:

I must say I agree with almost everything you said, but didn't know how to say a lot of it. I just ... stopped playing one day after I was killing everything in 2 hits on Master and wondered why I was trying to progress at all.
The game is not balanced at all. Making a gazillion daggers should not level you up to 100.

2 shot elder dragons? Woah, you're pretty good man, Look for a MLG scene for Skyrim, you'd tear it up.

I hated it when the 'dagger maker hit squad' came to my house and forced me to do it.

The problems OP has with the game do make sense and it's his/her opinion after all. I for one love Skyrim despite its problems. Reviewers do know it isn't perfect but think the actual game is so good that it's worth looking over the problems (I think that's what Jeff has been getting at)

#4 Posted by lclay (383 posts) -

Yeah I agree with basically everything said in this thread. I put about 28 hours into Skyrim and then just one day decided that I had zero desire to go back to it.

#5 Posted by Ping5000 (385 posts) -

@Neeshka said:

Anyway that's that. Bethesda excels at creating vast open and mostly beautiful worlds for a player to mess around in for weeks together. Skyrim does this very well.

I agree with all your criticisms, but like you said, Bethesda's made a great world and that's why I love this game. For me, it overpowers any and all problems to the point that everything else doesn't matter. I love the world and I love exploring and being in it.

#6 Posted by Winternet (8035 posts) -

You created an account just to say all this? Damn.

#7 Posted by Neeshka (118 posts) -

@Gnomicidal said:

Maybe I'll go back some day, but for now, New Vegas is an infinitely better game in my opinion.

Yup; definitely getting that next; I absolutely adored kotor 2 and neverwinter nights 2 mask of the betrayer which were made by obsidian too.

@Cramsy said:

The problems OP has with the game do make sense and it's his/her opinion after all. I for one love Skyrim despite its problems. Reviewers do know it isn't perfect but think the actual game is so good that it's worth looking over the problems (I think that's what Jeff has been getting at)

In a lot of the reviews it seems as though the reviewers played the game for just a couple of hours. It's really when you put at least a couple of days worth into it that the flaws become apparent.

Skyrim is a absolutely beautiful world to explore and wander around aimlessly; I just can't figure out which part of the gameplay reviewers like so much.

#8 Posted by MideonNViscera (2257 posts) -

I just found it's so long and big that I spent so many hours doing pointless little quests that I'm now too bored to do any of the main ones.

#9 Posted by Jimbo (9936 posts) -

I think you have to keep in mind that it's getting a lot of benefit of the doubt simply because you don't get 5 games coming out like this every year.  The standard of what is and isn't acceptable in the FPS and TPS genres, for example, is much higher just by virtue of the fact that so many of those are being made that the industry has it down to an exact science by now.
 
Let's say the commercial success of Skyrim (you could argue the consistent success of open-world RPG if you count Fallout 3 and New Vegas) results in other publishers putting out serious competitors -and I think that's still questionable just because of the sheer amount of work involved in making these games- but if they do, you won't see these sorts of flaws being accepted and overlooked for very long.  They're only being accepted now because the game as a whole is just such a breath of fresh air in an otherwise incredibly stale industry (the AAA end of it at least).

#10 Edited by Tennmuerti (8172 posts) -

Your avatar is of Viconia but your username is Neeshka. It's weirding me out :P

The formatting of your post is very hard to read, you are also clumping many different problems/arguments together, making it difficult to respond. :(

  1. UI is bad, no argument there. For weight, just mod it to a few Ks or something.
  2. AI is indeed problematic and has always been in ES games. Todd Howard talks a lot fo bullshit every time but that's bout it.
    Why clump combat here? If you want to make combat smoother simply bind your keys. There are 1-8 available shortcuts if you want to quickly use items/weapons/spells/shouts.
  3. Level scaling will never be perfect. It's a problem of such a system at a core level. The only solution is to man up and not use level scaling. But developers are afraid of giving players a challenge these days.
  4. Every SP RPG character leveling/gear system is exploitable. Period. You can always find stuff that's OP or UP. The only thing different about ES games is how far you can take it. As largely sandbox games the developers don't really worry as much about this balance. And ultimately they don't have to for the majority of their players. Because their games are not about difficulty but about doing what you want. In both Oblivion and Morrowind you could do even wilder shit with some of the systems.
    You found : lock picking, speech, pickpocketing useless. I didn't they were very useful for my play style. Lockpicking helps with opening locks easier and locks are everywhere throughout the game. Speech is great to get better prices and there are many places where you can use it in dialogue, it's also great having sopkeepers with way more then 1k gold that will buy everything from you even stolen goods. Pickpocket is also great for robbing everyone in the country blind if you so desire. The skills you described as grindy are only so because you chose to grind them. If you play naturally they will level just fine with use. Heavy/ Light Armor/Block/Sneak all level just fine with regular use throughout the course of the game. YOU chose to grind them.
  5. Economy is imbalanced, that's true. But ultimately it is largely irrelevant in a game such as this. There is always a time when you become too rich and too powerful. Once again to mention that you chose to exploit the smithing/enchanting and selling of your own volition.
  6. Very true. Problem here is that smithing perks re not properly applied to unique loot. Therefore you cant upgrade them like you can normal weapons/armor. Which makes them obsolete.
  7. Bugs are inherent to a game of such scope. The larger and more complex something is the more likely it is to break. This is a basic principle.
  8. On one hand there are some things they could have done better in dialogue department. On the other with the numbers they are working with I don't expect the same quality as from a tighter and more focused RPG like Witcher 2. But a valid argument nonetheless.
  9. Scale/budget, with the huge amount of NPC you have you can't expect the same amount detail in facial animation. You say that this is absurd for an RPG in 2011, but point to a huge RPG like Skyrim.
  10. Dragons are a threat if you don't exploit enchanting/smithing dude. You can't expect anything to be a threat when running around in gear that pretty much breaks the game. Guards can whittle their health down true but a lot of guards will die in the process, especially when you get to level 50+ dragons. The overall weakness of dragons is tied to level scaling so it's is a problem with the level scaling system Bethesda chooses to use more then anything.
  11. The major questlines are indeed for the most part disappointing. But I actually like the Companions one a lot and found the main quest line quite decent to, especially the bits towards the end, don't want to put spoilers here.
  12. Puzzles are repetitive, again no argument there.

From the above I can see that you chose to power game in Skyrim, but if this is so you cannot complain when your power gaming leads to trivialization of certain game-play aspects.

@Neeshka said:

Anyway that's that. Bethesda excels at creating vast open and mostly beautiful worlds for a player to mess around in for weeks together. Skyrim does this very well.

You nailed it. And thing is a lot of people are looking for exactly that. To them this is exactly what they want.@Neeshka said:

But to me Skyrim is just a hiking and junk collecting simulator; something that would appeal to LARPers or people looking for an aimless single player mmorpg experience.

But as a video game; Skyrim is a huge disappointment.

To you it's a huge disappointment. As a video game it's great for quite a lot of people

Please note I'm not falling heads over heels for Skyrim. It has it's fair share of issues. But for what it provides, which is something of a unique sandbox world, it does not have any direct competitors at least at the moment that do it that much better (two worlds two, divinity 2, are of even lower quality). And it also greatly improves on the previous entry in the franchise. I would even go so far as to say it's not that good of an RPG, but its a goddamn fun game nonetheless.

Ultimately until people can point to another game and say: "this is like an ES game but better" a lot of the little negative things about them will remain largely irrelevant.

Welcome to GB duder!

#11 Posted by AlisterCat (5710 posts) -

The amount I enjoy it vastly outweighs the ways in which I don't. Same can be said for reviewers. Also, different opinions on what is bad.

#12 Posted by Galiant (2195 posts) -

I had fun playing Skyrim. That's the only thing that matters to me.

#13 Posted by Village_Guy (2657 posts) -

@Tennmuerti: I couldn't agree more with pretty much all you just said.

I have to small points that make most of your complaining invalid OP, while I can't justify the bugs or the poor AI for example, I do believe that most people should be able to live with that to experience the rest of the game.

1. First of all, how often to we get games like The Elder Scrolls, not very often, when you can point me to a game that does everything Skyrim does and does it better on the same scale, then I will agree with you.

2. Your biggest complaints are about an imbalance in the game that you have created, you choose to take advantage of a system and become overpowered and rich. Personally I am enjoying the game and I have put plenty of hours into it, and I am not overpowered or insanely rich.

#14 Posted by SuperSambo (2881 posts) -

My Skyrim (360) was plauged by problems which meant that I could not play it, but my mates played the same games and it seemed like a great game.

Calling Skyrim the best game of the year is ignoring too much, but Game of the Year is different.

#15 Edited by Packie (255 posts) -

Other the badly designed and horrendous PC UI, I'm liking it so far.

But I find a hard time enjoying Skyrim's combat after coming straight from Dark Souls. Man, did the combat in that game kick ass.

#16 Posted by JCTango (1366 posts) -

As much as I like this game, I'll admit that the OP does raise some valid points. I agree with almost all of what he/she said. Even on the toughest difficulty, the game is way too easy. Dragons definitely aren't as scary as they should be.

#17 Posted by ajamafalous (12129 posts) -

I skimmed a bit, but everything I read (most of it) was true. I'm like the few other people in this thread; put 80 hours into it in the first two weeks and then just dropped it one day because I had no incentive to keep playing. 100 Conjuration, Illusion, Alteration, Destruction, Smithing, Enchanting, Heavy Armor: wearing full Daedric and casting Destruction spells for free; summoning two Dremora Lords if I wanted to waste the cast time to do so.   I just lost interest, and I've had absolutely no urge to go back. I didn't even do many 'main' quests. I did the full College of Winterhold questline and only got up to retrieving the horn of Jurgen Windcaller in the main quest. And I guess I did a bit of the Companions; enough to see Farkas become a beast. Didn't set foot in any other cities besides Whiterun beyond getting close enough to fast travel back to them later. The quests were largely forgettable for me (except for the one Daedric Prince (or whatever) quest I did); what kept me going was the level progression and the combat. But after realizing that 90% of the perks are pretty uninspired, and by trivializing the combat through level progression, I have nothing left to keep me interested.

#18 Posted by Daiphyer (1350 posts) -

Hating on what's popular. Because that's cool.

#19 Posted by iTWAN (45 posts) -

I personally am loving the game. Im about 90 to 100 hours in and I love it. For a game this massive it is great. This isnt some 6 hour shooter. Great game!

#20 Posted by JerichoBlyth (1044 posts) -

Stop whining - there will be dlc released, which will probably test the might of your master class. Hell, I have played the game for 46 hours and I'm only level 22. Just been doing sidequests, guild stuff, exploring, listening to stories. It's a different breed of game entirely. I'd actually refer to it as an interactive adventure with action elements, the way I've been playing it.

But to each their own. If you're so obsessed with AI problems and level scaling/balancing then that's YOUR concern. As Arnold Schwarzenegger would say "I don't play that game".

It was worth £27.00.

#21 Posted by EpicSteve (6495 posts) -

Man when those numbers go up it's awesome.

Skyrim is fucked in more ways that one. My main issue is that the story stuff is super half-assed.

#22 Posted by Tennmuerti (8172 posts) -

@Daiphyer said:

Hating on what's popular. Because that's cool.

What a lazy unoriginal assumption to make.

It's so cute it deserves a pat on the head. /aaaaaw

#23 Posted by Daiphyer (1350 posts) -

@Tennmuerti said:

@Daiphyer said:

Hating on what's popular. Because that's cool.

What a lazy unoriginal assumption to make.

It's so cute it deserves a pat on the head. /aaaaaw

Eh, I can't be bothered to defend anything against internet whiners.

This is what the internet is about: Bitching, whining, bitching, whining, bitching, whining, bitching and bitching and more bitching.

So, continue to bitch on the internet while I enjoy the greatness that is Skyrim.

#24 Posted by babblinmule (1262 posts) -

I agreed with most of what you said, but the majority of it seemed like either very minor downsides, or were flaws simply because you exploited the smithing/enchanting leveling up system. For example, if you want loot and money to remain relevant at higher levels, don't make 200 iron daggers and enchant all of them!

#25 Posted by Tennmuerti (8172 posts) -

@Daiphyer said:

@Tennmuerti said:

@Daiphyer said:

Hating on what's popular. Because that's cool.

What a lazy unoriginal assumption to make.

It's so cute it deserves a pat on the head. /aaaaaw

Eh, I can't be bothered to defend anything against internet whiners.

This is what the internet is about: Bitching, whining, bitching, whining, bitching, whining, bitching and bitching and more bitching.

So, continue to bitch on the internet while I enjoy the greatness that is Skyrim.

Then why are you here, posting in this thread? To make pointless blanket statements? Instead of participating in a discussion. How sophisticated of you compared to all the internet whiners...

#26 Posted by FreakAche (2955 posts) -

@Neeshka said:

Inventory weight is a huge problem in this game. I never had more than 40-50 lbs free in my bags.

You're doing it wrong.

#27 Posted by Hizang (8532 posts) -

(Insert arrow in the knee pun here)

#28 Posted by Hizang (8532 posts) -

Also 20 hours is a good time for a single player game.

#29 Posted by Daiphyer (1350 posts) -

@Tennmuerti: Oh no my comment was as thoughtful as you complaining about the game. Why is there so much backlash now? What did people expect going in? Did people not know what to expect from an Elder Scrolls game? "Oh man this game is going to have the awesome combat from Dead Island, the great story from Witcher, and the choice system of Fallout! This is going to be great!" No. Jack of all trades, master of none: Skyrim. Deal with it.

And what's the point of bitching on these forums anyway? Todd Howard is not going to read this, the lead AI programmer is not going to read this, none of these 'supposed' issues are getting fixed. It's just a big waste of time.

#30 Posted by Tennmuerti (8172 posts) -

@Daiphyer said:

@Tennmuerti: Oh no my comment was as thoughtful as you complaining about the game.

I'm not the one complaining about the game but kudos on trying to equate my detailed response to the OP to "Hating on what's popular. Because that's cool." in terms of thoughtfulness.

Priceless.

And what's the point of bitching on these forums anyway? Todd Howard is not going to read this, the lead AI programmer is not going to read this, none of these 'supposed' issues are getting fixed. It's just a big waste of time.

This is a video game forum about video games, people enjoy discussing different aspects of video games here be they positive or negative.

If you don't see any point to it maybe you should reconsider posting in it.

#31 Posted by FritzDude (2279 posts) -

You found Skyrim to be a huge disappointment, yet you played it for 2 weeks (336 hours)?

#32 Posted by phrosnite (3518 posts) -

Because the tradition needs to continue. Oblivion anyone?

#33 Posted by laserbolts (5352 posts) -

The only thing I agree with in this whole thing is the economy complaints. Other than that Skyrim deserves every GOTY it gets.

#34 Posted by Baldvinb (25 posts) -

@Neeshka said:

The problem is after 100 smith/ench/one-handed; your character just stops leveling. If you want to level you have to start out leveling something you never used; which sucks (since it's at 0 skill).

I´m with you there, soon as I hit 100 and stopped leveling up I haven´t played as much. I know many will say that I should just switch playstyle but then I would have to play the game in a way I did not want to play it to begin with, but I got well over 100 hours playing the game so I am pretty satisfied and will definitely come back to it after a few months and play it as another character.

Oh and you can´t make it a point you grinding skills and then say that the game is flawed/broken because you broke it, just saying.

#35 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

Out of curiosity, why do you insert a space before a question mark? Do you live in part of the world that's taught to do that in school?

Not trying to be a punctuation dick here, I'm genuinely interested in what seems to be an increasingly pervasive phenomenon.

#36 Posted by easthill (351 posts) -

I'll wait until something like OOO before really diving into the game.

#37 Edited by BelligerentEngine (348 posts) -

Apparently you thought Neeshka was a worthwhile character, additionally you have Viconia profile icon so you are not be trusted.

Why don't you go back to elistreefanfic.com weirdo, you're not wanted here.

In all seriousness though the majority of your complaints are just based on the actually base identifiable mechanics of Elder Scrolls games. If you're going to sit here and tell us you don't like usage based leveling or the combat system that they've had since Arena, then don't play Elder Scrolls games, how hard is that to figure out?

I just don't get why you're post isn't titled "Here's what I disliked about Skyrim", instead you are implying that because other people have different opinions than you do, their opinions are factually wrong.

#38 Posted by Vigilance (270 posts) -

I love this idea that reviewers are "ignoring Skyrim's problems".

Everything you listed is subjective. So possibly these things weren't seen as problems at all in the reviewer's eyes.

#39 Edited by Koobasta (52 posts) -

Agree on the UI bit, it's so horrendous one of the most popular mods is SkyUI. I'd recommend it, but it only address inventory at this moment. As for the difficulty in battle, you didn't mention if you set it to Master, I would recommend that if you're finding it too easy. Here's hoping that there's a mod out there to increase the mob difficulty. There might be a console command for it as well, I'm not sure.

As for the inventory, there came a point that I didn't bother with the dragon bone and scales. The armor sucked, I had full Daedric armor and weapon set, I just let it rot with the dragon. At first the inventory was a chore, but as you mentioned it was too easy to make money. No point in looting, unless it was something that could be disenchanted or the weight/price ratio was worth it to put in the bag.

In the end though, most of these are nitpicking. I have 130 hours into the game, and the only time I was bored was doing the Thieves Guild quest (freaking tedious). I find most of the stories and dialogue interesting, my expectations aren't so high that I expect an epic adventure with every quest.

#40 Edited by YI_Orange (1169 posts) -

Why can't people just enjoy something without 100 different people needing to try to tell them that their fun is wrong and their version of fun is so much better. Also, I haven't played New Vegas but I've seen my friend play it, that game is fucked. I kinda remember KOTOR 2 being pretty broken and really weak in comparison to KOTOR 1. Your fun is wrong.

That said, everything you listed is a minor annoyance for me, but nothing I can't easily look past.. I'm enjoying the game a lot. The biggest problem with this type of game for me has always been load times and travel. I spend so much time with these games the downtime and load times add up.

Edit - Am I the only one who at this points finds the brokenness of Fallout/Elder Scrolls games endearing? I feel like if they weren't broken there would be a certain emptiness.

#41 Posted by Daiphyer (1350 posts) -

@Tennmuerti: My original comment was towards the OP, not you. Don't understand why you decided to jump on that.

Moving on before this becomes one big flaming thread.

#42 Posted by Meowshi (2911 posts) -

@Daiphyer said:

@Tennmuerti: Oh no my comment was as thoughtful as you complaining about the game. Why is there so much backlash now? What did people expect going in? Did people not know what to expect from an Elder Scrolls game? "Oh man this game is going to have the awesome combat from Dead Island, the great story from Witcher, and the choice system of Fallout! This is going to be great!" No. Jack of all trades, master of none: Skyrim. Deal with it.

And what's the point of bitching on these forums anyway? Todd Howard is not going to read this, the lead AI programmer is not going to read this, none of these 'supposed' issues are getting fixed. It's just a big waste of time.

The point of complaining about the game on forums is exactly the same point of praising the game on forums. Because it's a discussion forum and people like to voice their opinions. I don't know why you're acting so defensive, but you're veering dangerously close to trolling territory. Actually contribute to the discussion or go find something else to do with your time.

#43 Posted by DystopiaX (5352 posts) -

I DONT LIKE THINGS OTHER PEOPLE LIKE WHY DONT THEY AGREE WITH ME GAHHHH

#44 Edited by Neeshka (118 posts) -

When people say there's "nothing quite like it"; I'd say a lot of mmorpg's offer a very similar experience. The only thing skyrim offers to me is better graphics and a LARPing potential.

I spent 2 weeks; that's probably around 50-60 hours of actual game time.

I like the responses so far; and that I'm not instantly jumped on by fanboys with the typical arguments:

1) mods will fix it

2) stop whining

3) everything you say is subjective/nitpicking

4) It's bethesda/mods will fix it

One of the good responses I keep hearing everywhere is I intentionally chose to break the game. I strongly disagree with this. As long as you pick a logical mix of skill points your character *will* be overpowered.

A very cursory look at the trees will immediately tell you which perks are completely useless and what is strong. It's a general rule of thumb that in any RPG flat damage % modifiers are strong and scale well. So it's not really a huge leap to just go ahead and pick enchanting, smithing and 1 core offensive combat skill.

If there are multiple ways of doing this and making the PC incredibly strong; especially if the perks are completely intended and don't interact in a buggy fashion; It's not an exploit. It's just bad game design.

@Tennmuerti said:

Your avatar is of Viconia but your username is Neeshka. It's weirding me out :P

  1. AI is indeed problematic and has always been in ES games. Todd Howard talks a lot fo bullshit every time but that's bout it.
    Why clump combat here? If you want to make combat smoother simply bind your keys. There are 1-8 available shortcuts if you want to quickly use items/weapons/spells/shouts.
  2. You found : lock picking, speech, pickpocketing useless. I didn't they were very useful for my play style. Lockpicking helps with opening locks easier and locks are everywhere throughout the game. Speech is great to get better prices and there are many places where you can use it in dialogue, it's also great having sopkeepers with way more then 1k gold that will buy everything from you even stolen goods. Pickpocket is also great for robbing everyone in the country blind if you so desire. The skills you described as grindy are only so because you chose to grind them. If you play naturally they will level just fine with use. Heavy/ Light Armor/Block/Sneak all level just fine with regular use throughout the course of the game. YOU chose to grind them.
  3. Dragons are a threat if you don't exploit enchanting/smithing dude. You can't expect anything to be a threat when running around in gear that pretty much breaks the game. Guards can whittle their health down true but a lot of guards will die in the process, especially when you get to level 50+ dragons. The overall weakness of dragons is tied to level scaling so it's is a problem with the level scaling system Bethesda chooses to use more then anything.

1. I clubbed AI and combat since AI is something usually integral to combat in single player games. Since we cannot play against other players in a single player action RPG; we rely on a heavily scripted button twitchy combat system (Diablo); something that's basically like an fps with stats (deus ex, mass effect, bioshock); or a strategic system : the analogue of what civ games are to SC2; so something like BG2 or icewind dale. In each case you are challenged by the sheer number of enemies; or a difficult AI. The same thing happens in single player fps games too.

Keybinding actually does not work at all if you use dual wielding. Maybe a mod will fix it.

Hopefully the entire combat itself will get fixed by a mod like deadly reflexes like the one for oblivion.

2.

lockpicking - with zero skill and just a few lockpicks I haven't had many issues with lockpicking in the game. Chests do not contain incredible things so part of that incentive is gone.

speech - Money in the game is so easy to generate anyway; i never found use for discounts.

pickpocketing - same as above; also having npc's go hostile and constantly having to reload didn't seem to me personally to be a fun experience.

The other thing is that levelling your character from the above non-combat perks results in enemies scaling in difficulty; but you as the player remain weak in combat.

That was a huge disincentive for me.

Smithing is grindy. I chose to make about 50 daggers and 50 hide bracers. But's i did that because it's intuitive and logical; not because I wanted to grind.

Every item gives the same skillup. Why bother making extremely heavy and costly items that will require multiple UI navigations to compensate for their weight; when you can just make lightweight and cheap items and get the same skill ?

3.

Levelling any single combat perk fully along with (1) of smithing/enchanting; potion usage; and optionally an armor perk will have you anhilate dragons.

I've never faced a dragon harder than a pyromancer or dragon priest.

Maybe the dragon AI is what makes them to be so easy - when they fly around; just hide behind a rock; when they land fus do rah and just wail away from behind.

Witcher 2 had 1 dragon, but the fight felt incredibly challenging and you actually formed your own strategy while fighting it.

The same thing happened for the few dragons in dragon age 1.

Finally; there's the whole quality vs quantity argument.

If skyrim had a slightly smaller game world; with fewer "radiant" quests and better game balance; wouldn't it be a vastly better game ?

#45 Posted by Dunchad (503 posts) -

If we could all just absorb the message of this video and abide by it - the internet would become so much nicer.

#46 Edited by Stahlbrand (839 posts) -

@iTWAN said:

I personally am loving the game. Im about 90 to 100 hours in and I love it. For a game this massive it is great. This isnt some 6 hour shooter. Great game!

Yeah, Skyrim is my GOTY. Not everybody is distracted by the same issues to the same degree. I am +100 hours and I'm still having a blast with the game. I put 100 hours plus into Dark Souls too, and it is my number 2 pick for the year. I bought The Witcher 2 at launch, played 6-8 hours or so and couldn't get into it, since the big patch I haven't tried it again, so I'll probably come back to it.

Skyrim runs great on my computer. The UI and menus work fine for me with KB/M and controller, after I got though a little familiarization period. If you're having serious encumbrance problems you are bad a games. I think the combat is on-target for a game you're going to play for 100+ hours.

I think some people don't understand that Bethesda makes games you can break if you want by using its own systems against it - they know you can break the economy, cheese easy skill ups, and use other exploits, they acknowledge that and keep it in every game. If you, as a player, break the game and that ruins your enjoyment of it, that is your problem, so don't do it if you don't enjoy it. If you find AI companions and summons doing all your fighting for you makes the game too easy, send them home.

IMO, trying to make the most powerful jack-of-all-trades character and do all the game content is the least fun way to play a BGS game. My Skyrim main never uses magic, archery, or stealth, rarely fast travels, did the MQ and the companions guild, and wanders the world doing side quests and Daedric shrines, I have a stealthy alt that saw the DB and TG content, and I'm going to make a mage later and do the CoW and MQ again. Creating different characters with different specializations, with self-imposed rules/limitations has been my consistently successful approach to BGS games for more than a decade.

It sounds like the OP just doesn't like the game - but clearly a majority of people who bought Skyrim (millions of people) do enjoy the game.

The "I don't like a game, so why can't everybody else recognize its flaws" is a failpost classic of the gaming world.

#47 Posted by imsh_pl (3298 posts) -

I think you missed the point of this game.

The point of this game is to start off as a weakling and end up a motherfucking badass who can breate fire and kill dragons with two sword swings.

This game is not hard and you can breeze through it if you're willing to invest time.

#48 Posted by The_Ruiner (1123 posts) -

I don't think anyone is ignoring the issues...it's just that the game is really great in spite of them.

You do have some good points. But I will say that combat in this game is what you make of it. If you pick a dual wielding melee guy you are picking the offense only option. So of course you will have no choice but to run in and attack over and over.

#49 Posted by OtakuGamer (1283 posts) -

They don't, they just outweigh the positives from the negatives.

#50 Posted by Renahzor (1000 posts) -

A large number of your complaints I don't really agree with, mainly the ones about the power scale. You have to put yourself in the perspective of a game reviewer, not a typical user, they don't sit down and grind out 700 iron daggers to hit smithing 100(and subsequently enchanting 100 and alchemy 100 to really break things) with a review deadline looming. This changes the way they play vs the way a person trying to squeeze every last hour out of the game will. I'll address your points in a reasonable fashion.

1) UI on PC is bad, we'll all agree there. While bad, it is still functional once you get used to it. The dialogue options not selecting properly is a PC UI issue which is probably a bug, seems to be caused by scroll wheel + arrow up/down confusion. Hopefully UI mods will address the sorting issues (some already have), because in house storage becomes a silly game of hiding stuff in proper containers to sort it by hand. Inventory was never a real issue for me, personally, and I've not used a companion for such things. I simply picked up only stuff I found valuable and left much of the junk behind, kept my traveling gear to a minimum, etc. In turn, I had no issue with useless trips to sell junk vendor loot. I simply ran 2-3 dungeons and quests as I went then returned to town with my spoils. In essence, this is what the inventory system is limiting, chosing to pickup and sell everything anyway and then pointing it out as a flaw is a bit silly.

2) The combat in Skyrim is not perfect, but I actually enjoy it quite a bit, and a lot more than I did oblivion. You may hotkey up to 8 different powers etc for use in combat on PC and never really have to pause the action. The favorites list if kept to a reasonable size is a decent enough way to quickly pause and pick something else. Pointing this out and then saying you adored NWN2 seems a bit silly as well.... AI we can agree on, although I didn't find it super annoying, enemies acted as I would expect. Brutes run up to try and smash you, archers peek in and out of cover slinging arrows at you, and spell casters choose a bit different strategy depending on their magic type. Yes, other games do rpg combat better, that doesn't mean Skyrim's is inadequate.

3) I assume this is a play-style issue, because I only found one place where I even noticed a power scaling problem. The first dreugar deathlord I encountered was brutally difficult to defeat. From then on I used more stealth and trickery(playing to my characters strengths) anytime I encountered one. The rest of the jumps in enemy type seemed typical and nothing stood out as too powerful.

4) Any of the specific trees are incredibly powerful at 100 skill with a lot of perks spent. I enjoy that design. I never used any tricks to grind stealth or other skills, although I did power level smithing and enchanting to make myself overpowered. I don't, however, then complain about the game being too easy. The specific trees you point out as useless actually solve a few of your issues, should you choose to take them. Pickpocket for example has Extra Pockets pretty early in the tree and makes stealing some stuff trivial(Hint: Trainers keep the gold you give them in their pockets until you leave the area.....), and speech allows you to get better buy/sell prices, as well as making vendors have more gold to begin with and turning them into fences(this is incredibly game breaking if you didn't figure it out). Lockpicking only feels useless if you ignore the side tree benefits like extra treasure etc, and as such is the only one I didnt find immediately useful, although I'd love to have it now a bit later in the game.

5, 6, 10) How you choose to play the game broke these areas for you. Here's a hint, Enchanting and smithing can be finished to 100 in incredibly boring fashions, especially when used together. This will also give you a gold supply far exceeding what you would normally have thanks to the price of well enchanted daggers. Max smithing, alchemy and enchanting bonused weapons and armor are *incredibly* powerful. Most people will not play this way. I even went as far as doing the alchemy/enchanting loop and now have a bow with my gear that deals 575 damage before sneak modifiers(3x), potions(130% bow damage bonus), poison(250ish damage or other effects), and enchants(fire/frost or fire/paralyze). I don't then go on to complain about how easy this makes the game. This is a tradition with elder scrolls games, make yourself overpowered if you wish, and feel free to mod the game to make it harder, but complaining about it makes little sense. I can one shot a sleeping dragon, and 2 shot ancient dragons, this doesn't mean everyone is going to break the game like I did with this particular character.

7) we agree, bugs are bad.. I have not had any bugs break something for me to a point of being a big problem.

8, 9, 11) Personal preference is a fickle thing, I don't find any of these areas particularly offensive. I quite enjoy the quests, For probably 50 hours I didn't fast travel much and exploring was really fun. Theive's guild and mage's college so far was/are pretty intriguing. NPCs seemed fine to me for the scope and scale in Skyrim, and the different ways quests play out is interesting to talk with friends about or to see on a second playthrough.

12) Puzzles should be better, hoping for mods to make them more difficult/diverse, designing to the low end of the spectrum when it comes to puzzles is common.

I think Skyrim is very fun, the game I have played the most and enjoyed the most this year. It is the first single player fantasy RPG I've really dug into since NWN2 (although I played through DA1, I didn't get as engrossed in it). Yes, it has it's problems, but they're outweighed by everything else the game does well. You may be disappointed with it, but I certainly am not.

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