Fantasy Friday #28: Why Skyrim Is The Game For YOU!

Posted 20 January, 2017 by Rinn in Fantasy Friday / 6 Comments

Fantasy Friday

Fantasy Friday is my own feature, and is pretty self-explanatory: I do a feature on something to do with the genre. Sometimes it will be a book recommendation, sometimes showcasing a book or series I’ve loved and other times it might be a discussion post. You’re more than welcome to join in with this feature, let me know if you make your own Fantasy Friday post!

Today I want to talk about: why you (yes you!) should play The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

I am, of course, assuming that if you’re reading this post, you’re a big fan of fantasy fiction. If not then – what are you doing here?! 😉 You may or may not have heard of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, a game released by Bethesda in 2011. It is a huge epic fantasy RPG (role playing game) that allows the player to create their own character from a range of different races and other options, and completely choose the path their character takes. Whether you’d rather play as a stealthy assassin who kills from the shadows without leaving a trace, a swordsman who is unafraid to run straight into the midst or battle or as a mage who summons the dead, shoots fireballs and heals allies – or just about anything else you could think of – you can do it on Skyrim.

And the adventure begins...
And the adventure begins…

The reason I think this game works so well for fantasy fans, regardless of whether they normally play video games or not, is because of the sheer size of the game: it feels like you are in your very own epic fantasy novel. And there is absolutely no need to rush things; all quests can be completed whenever you like (or ignored, if you wanted). You could spend hours and hours exploring the landscape and simply level up from exploring and interacting with NPCs (non-player characters). For example, you can level Speechcraft by talking to merchants, persuading people to help you out, or intimidating them – meaning you don’t actually have to level through combat. There are places where you can buy homes or even build your own from scratch. You can get married, adopt kids, and live out the rest of your Skyrim days in a manor house by the lake.

Or you could become an intrepid adventurer. Skyrim is filled to the brim with secrets, caves and endless tunnels. Forests, lakes, mountains, every kind of landscape. It is a huge place, and all completely explorable. One day, you might search ancient Dwarven ruins for treasure, and find yourself battling the mechanised constructs left there to defend from thieves. The next, you might find yourself escorting someone from one city to another, or collecting a lost item for a villager. Then it might be on to defending a town from a dragon – you’re their only hope, their only chance of survival.

Watching the sun set over Riverwood.
Watching the sunset over Riverwood.

I have sunk over 150 hours into Skyrim, and most of that just on one playthrough. The amount of stuff you can do is literally limitless. Just recently, the Special Edition was released, with improved graphics. Skyrim was already pretty gorgeous when it came out in 2011, but now it looks absolutely stunning. I’ve started playing again, just because it feels like experiencing the game all over again for the first time. And this time, instead of a hunter/assassin, I’m going for a mage character, which has completely altered how I play. I’m taking more of the story and lore in, and spending a lot of time just staring at the landscape.

A view over Whiterun.
A view over Whiterun.

You don’t have to travel alone around Skyrim. You can take a follower with you, and there are so many to choose from. As you find each city and town, you’ll discover more and more people who want to join you – maybe they’ve heard of you and your feats, or maybe they just want an adventure. Skyrim is undeniably Norse inspired. From the names to the architecture, everything has a Scandinavian feel to it – yet still feels like something from another world. When you enter Whiterun, the first city you’ll come to on your adventure, you can’t help but be awed by the sight of Dragonsreach, the Jarl’s castle, towering over the rest of the city, like the Golden Hall of Meduseld over Edoras. Or the Gildergreen, the huge tree in the centre, reminiscent of the stories of Yggdrasil. And of course Jorrvaskr, home of the Companions, which looks like it was built from a Viking ship.

In the feast hall of the Companions.
In the feast hall of the Companions.

So, fantasy fans, whether you’re a gamer or not – Skyrim might just work for you. It’s like taking the best elements from all your favourite fantasies, mixing them all up and then being thrown into the mix yourself. You craft the character, you choose the path, and you can change the world – for better or worse.

Oh, and did I mention there are dragons? 😉

skyrim dragon gif

Have you ever played Skyrim? If not, would you consider trying it?

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6 responses to “Fantasy Friday #28: Why Skyrim Is The Game For YOU!

  1. I’ve never been a gamer, I was one of those kids who never even had a Gameboy, but I love games and the older I get the more I’d like to get into gaming and I only ever hear great things about Skyrim. My problem is that I have a very obsessive personality, so if I started playing Skyrim I don’t think I’d leave my house again for 12 years and I’m already an introvert. 😐

    It looks amazing, though! One of these days I’ll have to dip my toe in…

  2. I loooooved and looooved and looooved Oblivion! Tried Skyrim after that, but it just seemed so cold. My BF says that I did all the wrong quests on Skyrim xD I’m kind of a side quest girl, barely do the story. I was also unlucky enough to play it on a computer that barely ran xD top it with the fact that it’s always snowy (it’s my climate and I hate it) and there’s only light for 2 in-game hours (like 10 minutes xD)… Yeah, so that game didn’t go down that well. I still stay by Oblivion 🙂 it was much more colorful.
    But yep, the dragons were cool. Except that you had to slay them :(((
    Who do you normally play, btw? I can’t help being the mage. AAAAALL the time.

    • Nah I do get that, sometimes I get bored of the climate in the game too and try and stick to the areas that aren’t snowy. I do like Oblivion, but I always preferred the story and gameplay of Skyrim. There is an expansion pack of Skyrim where you can ride dragons. 🙂

      And I’m normally an archer/assassin. Love being sneaky!

      • I guess Skyrim is better to play as a sneaky character then! I’m always a mage (BTW, I am totally unable to sneak, so I lose out on a lot of guild quests), and being a mage in Skyrim is kind of lame. I don’t like the battle system much.

        I did like all the expansions/mods where you could get your own cabin though 😀

        However, there’s one thing I missed in Skyrim. If I’m not mistaken, Oblivion had a lot more of a variety when it came to ingredients, particularly plants. I missed that in Skyrim. I’m a total forager.

        • Yeah, I did actually start my new character as a mage but found it a lot less enjoyable. I did some reading, and apparently pure mage is actually quite hard to play on Skyrim.

          I love Hearthstone! Building up my lakeside manor right now 😀

          I am too. I pick up EVERYTHING and then store stuff away in my various houses. I have an ingredient cupboard full of stuff I never use…

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