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Which was the first Elder Scrolls game you played?

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Why you should choose the path of: Magic

One month away from Skyrim - I feel sick from waiting. Some people prefer not to decide whether they're gonna go with Stealth, Melee or Magic and just go with what they kinda "fall into" as they are playing the game.  Those that do prefer deciding beforehand, are probably still having a hard time deciding, since we are no longer "pushed" into a specific combination because of bad game mechanics (I'm talking about you, Oblivion.)

So with that in mind, let us see what benefits we might get from the stand-alone path of Magic.

It is very hard to find a good game, where they include an awesome magic system. The biotic system in Mass Effect is neat (although it still has more potential,) but it isn't really magic, now is it? Even Bethesda, in my opinion, have always had trouble with this, but it looks like they've definitely remedied that in Skyrim.

Apart from making a very wide array of spells, Bethesda has made a unique animation for each and every spell and mana regenrate a lot faster, so you'll be able to make good use them even before you raise your magicka to brutal heights.

Furthermore, the spells can solve all of your problems and in a lot of different ways, enabling you to pick the technique that speaks most to your nature. See a group of bandits in the distance? Well, you could cast Frenzy and watch them take care of each other - Or you could set a (rune)trap and then taunt them to trigger it with a well placed fireball to the head. Glorious!

In the beginning , you might feel that powerful as a mage, as Todd Howard said, but eventually you will grow as a magician and come to feel very, very powerful! You've surely seen the mind-blowingly cool spells, such as the AoE fire spell, which looks nothing short of brutal.

One of the major perks of the mage's spells is that you don't have to carry around heavy equipment, due to the "bound" magic, which temporarily calls forth either armor or weapons for your convenience. Unlike Oblivion, it seems that we won't be grabbing Daedra equipment, as the picture of a dude with a bound bow suggests. Instead it'll be kind of "Astral" goodies, but none the less, just as lethal. The only thing missing when you use a bound spell is the sound of three light nodes and a woman saying "Because your worth it." - Unfortunately Bethesda didn't take any of my suggestions.

As always you can pay other magicians to learn these spells, or you can learn them through the various spell books throughout Skyrim.

A mage's primary crafting skill is Enchanting, allowing you to break down the enchanted weapons you find in order to learn the enchantments they had, and permanently be able to apply that enchantment to everything else! Glorious! Also, when you enchant something it glows with the color that applies to the used enchantment - So if it is fire, then it'll glow red and if it is ice, then it'll glow blue.

The guild that applies to the mage, is the College of Winterhold! Located in.... Winterhold! Good guess, grasshopper!
The college of Winterhold is solely a mage's guild (You can join no matter what, so don't worry,) but the possibility that  you can go and grab the title of headmaster, like you could with all of the guilds in Oblivion, has only been hinted at, but not completely confirmed. Personally, it sounds to me as if you can.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

The leaked manual

A couple of days ago, Maybe two, the official game manual was leaked onto the internet, for all of us to see. Personally I have already read every word twice and even though it did not reveal anything new, it made me happy - "Like a dragon!" <--- (Which sit-com is this a reference to? Do you know?)

I have downloaded all of the pictures, but I am not going to post them here, and here's why: Bethesda did not want it published. No one has any idea who took the pictures and neatly threw them online like steaks on the grill, but Bethesda is quite pissed at him.

If you want to find the pictures yourself, I suggest googling around for them. They are practically spoilerless, since they merely explain how to play the game.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Fan-made HD map of Skyrim

A reddit user named Mottis86 have made a map over Skyrim, based on the recently released game map - I think it may be an understatement to call the resolution HD, so I'm gonna go with Hyper-HD.

I'm usually ungrateful and throw popcorn at random pedestrians, but I'm gonna go ahead and say it: Thank you, Mottis86! You have proved your awesomeness!

Remember to click the picture to view it in its full, overwhelming size:

Monday, 10 October 2011

Personal Dovahkiin!

This morning I challenged the Skyrim Coverage facebook page members to make a drawing of their own ideal Dovahkiin in Microsoft Paint, and send it to my e-mail:

Of course, to get it started, I made one myself and I now encourage everyone of you to make your own Paint Dovahkiin and send to my mail - Then I'll post it here, along with your also mentioned username :)

Well, here is mine!


Sabre Toothed Tigers!

I feel like a total douche, not having written this yet. Seriously. It's old stuff and I'm like: "I'll do it later - you know, in 3 months." Burn! Worse than the time, you know that big bummer, the time with McCain, who overdid Joe Plummer (Rhymes!!)

Anyway: Everybody loves cats! Especially when they are huge, with giant fang-teeth and an incredible urge to kill and eat you like the most pathetic piece of prey ever. They're just so cute!

Did my earlier remarks, as well as the title of this topic delude you? This topic is about the Sabre Toothed Tiger, which will be quite present in Skyrim. I'm guessing it's sort of an alternative to the Mountain Lion, which was more badass than Daedroth in Oblivion, which is sort of silly.

I kinda lack a picture, but enjoy this wonderful picture of a mountain lion from Oblivion:


If I could pick a familiar, it'd be an ostrich named Larry. But that is not what this post is about at all. This post is about Skeevers, which are big rats, alas not as big as the ones in Oblivion.

Giant rat (Oblivion)
I feel like huge rats are one of the oldest RP enemies, even though they lack a certain creativity. Don't get me wrong, they're perfect for 1st encounters due to being totally pathetic, not taking in account a certain example I heard yesterday: "In Morrowind, it is completely retarded that you can lose to a rat when you have a sword" - I'm gonna have to agree, but mostly because I lost to a mosquito here the other day, even though I had a sledge hammer. I feel bad about that.

Giant rat (Morrowind)
Anyway, Skeevers are significantly smaller than the usual giant rats, making them even more pathetic, but at least they attack in groups, adding to the illusion of being in actual combat.

Though the different takes on giant rats through Elder Scrolls time have about the same size and challenge level of a mudcrab, they have never quite received as much attention and appreciation, which is probably due to the fact that they lack the pride and quiet dignity of the much worshipped mudcrab.

Sunday, 9 October 2011

You just got scal'd!

In case you did not get my clever pun, this post is about scaling, regarding both enemies and loot.

I recently received en e-mail (fancy new technology,) wherein I was asked about loot scaling and to answer that, I also had to explain a bit about scaling in general.

Morrowind had no real level scaling, apart from some quantity of certain items during looting, but it isn't really worth mentioning. Oblivion, on the other hand, had a clear scaling factor: When you gain a level, your loot and your enemies level with you, resulting in pure hate from some players that didn't feel like they were getting any stronger, which is an important element in a fantasy RPG.

Bethesda listens and made an alternative at the likes of what they did in Fallout, making different zones that lock to the level you are currently in when you first enter them and with some pre-set zones as well - Many fear that it'll fuck everything up and that we might accidentally lock up all the zones in a low level - It is however, not as simple as that.

As with Susan Boyle, there lies more beneath the questionable front. Zones actually have a level interval, or a level minimum, which it can't go beneath - Say for instance that minimum was lvl. 12, then even if you visited in level 6, then it wouldn't be lowered beneath that, but it would be set to the minimum. This is where we get to the looting.

The rewards you find in dungeons, as well as quest rewards, are scaled not after level, but difficulty. So say if you entered mentioned dungeon in level 6, then it would be rather difficult to get through, resulting in greater rewards than you would have gotten if it was scaled to you exact level. Although this is the system, there are some pre-set loot and quest-rewards that won't change, regardless of [censored] size and challenge level.

A final thing to mention: There is also something called Epic loot, which you can find anywhere, at any level, at any time. I assume that it is some sort of collection of unique items, like those you get from the Daedric Princes, but I am just guessing. I'd trust my guessing though, that's how I got through elementary school, after all.

Even more screenshots! They're AWESOME!

The heavy lacking in posting is due to me being busy with school and acting stuff - Whilst I finish my several drafts, you can feast your eyes and have a good drool over these new screens that were recently released. As always you can click the image to view it in its original size, which is quite bigger.

I've added comparison pictures, to enhance the drooling effect.

For those of you who can't tell: This is a Shrine of Azura.
For those of you who don't know: Azura is a Daedric Lord.
For those of you who don't care: Do.
I'll bet my ass that she'll grant us Azura's Star again.
Also I noticed a rather vast difference in size as compared to the previous games. Well, you can see for yourselves.

This is the "Bound Bow" spell at work and it is clearly no the Daedra we temporarily steal our weapons from. This seems more like an Astral / Arcane thing. It was already revealed that there would be weapons like this in one of the previews from PAX, but... It's SO PRETTY!

In several previews, the player/writer ran into a door with a "skull" which asked them to answer several riddles correctly. Unfortunately they failed, but I was left with an unsatisfied thirst for knowledge as to what this door looked like and what was behind it - This picture answers both question.
This is clearly the door mentioned, or one just alike, and it is even more clear that there lies a Dark Brotherhood sanctuary behind it. It's certainly their theme and there is a hand engraved on the skulls forehead. The door there was in Oblivion, the one in dimmed red light in the picture above, also had the same engravings.

Well, this is practically just stating that Bethesda has, beyond making the men look rad, made the women look hot. This is clearly the image of a young Nord maiden looking for some action. Clearly. Clear as day.

A female character in her elven armor, melting our hearts. Literately.

There you have it - I posted about it: It has been feared, revered, rumored, worshipped, fled from and ultimately loved: It is the Mudcrab. I should probably add this picture to the mudcrab post.

A cool mage, firing us up for Skyrim. I have some trouble seeing the background clearly, you know, due to the darkness and the huge flames (not that I'm complaining) in the middle of everything, but I think I see a bridge in the background.

This is clearly the family room. Clearly.