Now as there are a lot of things to cover lets start with the biggest part of this review first the mechanics. Now straight out of the gate things stamina. This is a mechanic that I am ok with for running but for Special attacks with weapons this should be abandoned. It is archaic and no longer needed. Now the Skill tree, which for the most part I like felt a bit incomplete and for many reasons. The main one being that it is these skills that judge your level. Whether getting skill ups in weapons or in blacksmithing it doesn’t matter. Also I feel a general skill tree should have been put in place that only opened at specific levels not on skill. An example of a ability in that tree would be the ability to carry 100 more pounds which is in the stealth tree.
Which thanks to my example allows me to segway in to how weight which is a very interesting mechanic becomes a hindrance in this game verses the fallout series where it was easily accepted.
The reason for this is simple in fallout weapons and armor could be used to repair others of that same make and model. However Skyrim does not have this feature and thus you quickly fill your bags with the same items over and over as the mobs tend to match your gear. Also as dragons begin to become more prominent the dragons bones and scales are heavy so having a pack mule… I mean a companion becomes essential to game play.
Weapons in this which are a huge part of the game look very nice and can be enchanted with charges to have fire or ice and can even steal the souls of your victims. The weapons are all your standard fantasy regiment and have nothing that you would write home about as new or unique. However I noticed as you start to get higher the shield becomes king it seems that a adjustment of the shield mechanics was a definite need.
Magic which had a strong start dies off in the end and feels like it just doesn’t have the power needed to allow you to be a solid caster, which is sad because I found the idea of being a two handed caster fun though I found a yet again a shield becoming a needed offhand item.
Mounts and houses I am really not going to talk about these more so then the fact that the damage mechanic is screwed up… as my horse single handed tanked a dragon and then proceed to die to a wolf some time later after a reload I later killed it from dropping off a small ledge that apparently was just slightly to high for him. I realize they are trying to add a real life gravity system and damage structure. However if Mr. Ed can tank a dragon on, stand in the fire and hold him from landing to death. I don’t think jumping from a rock that is just slightly above his head is going to kill him.
Status effects, which need to have a way to be depicted more then everyone in town telling you that you look sick or need to lie down. Because frankly for the first 3 hours I ran around just thinking that was a odd thing for people to say. Only when I opened the map which also long and behold holds your journal so you can chose the quest you go and complete did I find something that told me I had a disease. Which after leaving the first town takes about 2 seconds to get rid of once you find a temple. So a ui effect a slight red outline on the border of the screen or anything would be helpful.
And finally the inventory system which is also kinda a mess because the sorting leaves much to be desired. However it is not the worst I have seen in a game so I will gloss over it. Now one of the mechanics I really liked was the favorites feature, but again it is semi broken as when you have 2 of the same weapon it can not distinguish and you have to open your inventory and manually equip them.
On to the plot which after character creation with such detail as to even ask you how much dirt should be on your face. Your character is found sitting in a cart forced to listen to some convicts who whine about being in the wrong place at the wrong time and how the guy in the back with a gag in his mouth is a threat because he has the voice. However like most Bethesda games the moment they force you through the starter plot it fades in to the background as nothing more then something you hit upon once in a great while. Due to the fact of side stories and rand quests.
Graphic wise nothing special I ran it at the best settings and honestly was not impressed by its engine and I notice some of the fun Bethesda glitches of items, npcs and mobs. Though these are nothing new if you played any of the fallout series.
Music in this game is well done and very catchy… honestly I got in fights more often then not to hear the battle music. So it is refreshing to hear this kinda music and just be able to enjoy it. It gets you pumped and just has a good overall feel.
In conclusion this game is a pass for me while I feel it has its great moments I could have easily found them in other games.