Top 10 Games Of This Generation – #8 – Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

(Original Review)

Just before playing Skyrim for the first time, I watched my brother play Oblivion for an hour. We had a copy that was given to us years ago that we just decided to crack open. Man, that game didn’t age well. Besides the obvious degradation in graphical fidelity, its take on the middle ages appeared very rote and the mechanics looked like Dungeons and Dragons to a fault.

Skyrim blew the doors off of its predecessor and pretty much every other game out there. There wasn’t a game with a world as big, graphics as pretty, or an experience as immersive. For dozens of hours of my life, I thought the game was damn near magical.

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Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Review

Going into Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, I had little to no interest in the series or the type of fiction this game is based on. I was bored by the Lord of the Rings movies, have no interest in playing anything like Dungeons & Dragons, and outside of Fire Emblem, never cared to play any video games based on fantasy. Prior to my brother and I’s purchase of Skyrim, we finally decided to play our copy of Oblivion, which has been sealed and sitting on our shelf for a year. While I could appreciate the ambition behind the game, the start of that game didn’t win me over. The start of that story wasn’t interesting, the race and class system was far too confusing for my tastes and the use of ‘ye olde English’ font irritated me from a readability and overall design perspective.

All things considered, I shouldn’t like Skyrim. The only reason I even bought it in the first place was because I think I’d be missing out on the gaming zeitgeist if I didn’t play this game. However, instead of shrugging it off like Oblivion, Skyrim has won me over in a big way.

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Game Design Talk – Is Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Too Big?

There is nothing about the Skyrim experience that you can describe as “small”. Everything from the size of the world, to the number of quests, to the number of ways to play that game are too large to quantify. Because of how much stuff there is to do in the game, I’m fairly certain that the majority of Skyrim players will never finish the main quest, let alone experience everything that game has to offer.

In spite of its girth, it amazes me how great Skyrim is on almost every front. With that said, could Skyrim have been an overall better game if it wasn’t so grand?

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In Third Person’s 2011 Game of the Year

Choosing a game of the year is never easy. Each year, we’re blessed with tons of great games, and to choose just one above the rest is very tough. Case in point: I copped out last year and picked two games as my “games of the year” for different reasons, but never definitively picked one over the other. I’m sure that the process for selecting a game of the year can be even harder for major gaming publications, who have to weight out multiple opinions before coming to a ‘definitive’ conclusion.

Having played many of this year’s biggest releases, I did a lot of soul-searching in order to choose a game I feel is worth of the game of the year distinction. When it was all said and done, I came to a conclusion. Was it Batman: Arkham City? Uncharted 3? Portal 2? Could it be another big release I haven’t listed here? Or maybe I went completely out of left field with my choice?

Without further ado, In Third Person’s 2011 game of the year is…

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