If it's crap ... We'll tell you
Ladies and Gentlemen, for you viewing pleasure I present The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim, now with actual gameplay footage:
Dear Barbara. That was mighty impressive. So now we all know that the game is ultra-pretty and looks to be engaging as hell; but will it be able to break Professor Jeff's Elder Scrolls curse? Who can say?
Curse you ask? Well pull up a chair and hear my tale of woe. I have tried to play every Elder Scrolls game since Arena (including Redgard) and there's just something about them that I could never really get into. Initially I think it was because I didn't quite realize how to play the games. I remember the first time I played Arena, I finished the starting dungeon and then literally ran in real time to the next town over. That took something like an hour of just holding down the up button on the keyboard. Needless to say, when I got to the first town I was pretty much done with Arena. Now this was a time way back in the long ago when a friend would loan you a game and all you'd get was a CD or some floppies. There was no internet to consult, so I'm going to chalk this one up to lack of documentation.
Daggerfall unfortunately came out when I didn't have a system with the specs to really run the game, so no matter how awesome anyone told me it was I would've needed $800 worth of computer upgrades to play it well, and as an eighteen year old, I was wasting my money on much more important stuff ... like drugs ... and beer. By this time I was kind of down on the franchise, but when Morrowind came out everyone wouldn't shut the hell up about how awesome it was. So once again, I scrubbed out my prejudices and gave it a shot. I remember the game starting out in a swampy kind of area and within about three hours I was sick of staring at green, brown, and light brown textures. I know that there's an awesome game in there, I've seen my friends playing it, but I just never was able to get through the initial gameplay slog in order to find it.
Then there was Oblivion. Oh Oblivion. I upgraded my system just to play you. I bought you for full retail at a time in my life where I pirated everything. I brought you into my home and tried to love you and what did you give me? Sliding difficulty. Anyone who's been keeping up with my reviews should know how much I hate a sliding difficulty scale. What fun is a game when you never seem to get any more powerful? As if that weren't enough, we also got the 'skills level up as you use them' mechanic. This too has never really worked very well in my opinion. Don't get me wrong, the game is gorgeous and fun for a bit but never really managed to keep hold of my attention.
So when Bethesda announced that they were making Fallout 3 in the same format, I was all ready to hate it. 205 hours later with every living scrap of DLC purchased and exploited, you could say I was pleasantly surprised. I don't know what it is about pounding a Supermutant with a baseball bat that does it for me, but for some reason I get way more out of that than I do hitting an Orc with a sword. So bring it on Bethesda! This could be the one! One thing's for certain. I'm looking forward to finding out.