The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is the next installment in the award-winning Elder Scrolls series. Skyrim is the follow up to the 2006 Game of the Year, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and the next game from Bethesda Game Studios, creators of the 2008 Game of the Year, Fallout 3.
Skyrim reimagines the open-world fantasy epic, pushing the game play and technology of a virtual world to new heights
Play any type of character you can imagine, and do whatever you want; the legendary freedom of choice, storytelling
Skyrim's new game engine brings to life a complete virtual world with rolling clouds, rugged mountains and ancient dungeons
Choose from hundreds of weapons, spells, and abilities; the new character system allows you to play any way you want, contains the premium map
November 11, 2011
Average Customer Rating:
based on 1242 reviews
Average Customer Review:
( 1242 customer reviews )
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
396 of 429 found the following review helpful:
Bethesda has created a monsterNov 12, 2011
By Nate Hertzler
Time passes really fast when you are playing this game. The first six hours went by in the blink of an eye yesterday ... my character is at level 10 and I feel like I have barely scratched the surface of anything. If you like these kinds of games, you will be hooked because Bethesda has managed to create something which really nails it on every level. I am a heavily magic oriented player so I spent most of my time so far in the mages' guild in winterhold. For some reason though the Dark Brotherhood wants me dead and sent an assassin to kill me. I was just messing around with some conjuration spells in a forest glen and the assassin was killed by this flame creature I had conjured before I even knew what was going on. Looted the body and found a note saying they want me dead. Stuff like that just happens and it is awesome. Dungeons btw are really fun and very well designed.
I do have one gripe that I see has been addressed by some other reviewers who gave a low rating for the game on amazon. That is that you have to pause the action to switch spells. In Oblivion, I could instantly switch spells with the d-pad and then cast them with RB while wielding a sword and shield. In Skyrim, you must assign a spell to one hand or the other, so it kind of feels like you have lost your RB button. I can understand this complaint.
However, if you have posted about this, keep in mind that your RB button is not idle. It has been reserved for shouts, and you will obtain shouts eventually although you have to play along the main quest until you get the first one. I have none as yet because I am focused on the mages' guild for now. However once you do you get shouts, you can instantly cast them with RB while also dual wielding whatever you choose.
The bottom line though is that this game is basically like Oblivion on steroids. If you liked Oblivion and spent 200+ hours playing it like I did, you will be addicted to Skyrim. Having playing all through yesterday and now it's 4 am and I'm getting up to play some more rather than get some sleep, this is probably the best game I've ever played. That's a lot of praise coming from a life long gamer. Again, so long as you like RPG's as opposed to say, MW3 (which a lot of people are playing non stop right now as well), this is the game for you. BTW $65 almost feels like a very low price if you were to actually measure out how many hours you are going to spend playing this game over the next year or so, and divide it by $65. I could spend $65 in a heartbeat at say, a Jets game at the Meadowlands, but that money goes a LONG way when playing Skyrim.
To sum up...why am I wasting my time typing this review? Time to go play Skyrim.
114 of 124 found the following review helpful:
Beyond my Expectations....Nov 13, 2011
"Still shooting with Film!"
First and foremost, I have to give props to the art department at Bethesda. The art direction for this game is so far above earlier titles that even comparing them to this game is utterly pointless. Its literally in a class by itself and this is evident everywhere you look. The most obvious and impressive improvement has to be the design of the clothing, armor and weapons. The intricate designs are truly breathtaking. Even the cheap equipment you first start off with is stunning. For example, one of the first shields your introduced to in the game is the Hide Shield and its absolutely beautiful. Large metal rivets circle the outer diameter and intricate designs adorn the leather. It even has the dents and nicks one would expect to see from a shield that has seen its fair share of battle. This attention to detail is seen everywhere and it goes right down to the bindings of the books and the crackle glazed dishes and pottery found adorning most tables and halls. When you add this to the significant improvement in graphics....well, what you get is a level of realism that simply blows earlier titles out of the water. This is hands down the best art direction I have ever seen from a video game and ultimately it gives this world a level of realism that we simply haven't seen before.
The world itself is absolutely beautiful. One of the first open scenes I came across was a large flowing river that had huge rocks jetting up creating white water/rapids. Large mountains were in the background with wisps of clouds running all up and down the side of the mountain. It was absolutely stunning. I had to just stop and stare for a few moments. The draw distance has been significantly increased and the detail, as I wrote up above, is amazing. The landscape itself is just one big work of art. Traveling around and discovering the land for yourself has always been one of the big enjoyments for fans of this series. Well, Skyrim doesn't disappoint in this regard. In fact, this is easily the best title yet in regards to this aspect of the game. No other game series can compete with the size and scope of the worlds that Bethesda creates for this series and no other game in the Elder Scrolls series even comes close to matching what Bethesda has achieved this time around with Skyrim. They have significantly leapfrogged anything and everything they have done in the past.
An issue I feel compelled to discuss is the huge improvement with the 3rd person perspective in this game. As I am sure people are aware, 3rd person perspective in Oblivion was pretty bad. Actually, it was awful. You could switch over for short periods but the game was pretty much unplayable from that perspective. Well, the improvement Bethesda has made in this aspect of the game is nothing short of amazing. Your character no longer looks like he is walking on air and your easily able to interact with your environment. Basically this game is now wholly playable from this perspective. I prefer playing in 3rd person perspective when I am just traveling around and its just really nice to see Bethesda finally take the proper steps to fix this aspect of this series. If your going to include it than at least make it playable and Bethesda has done just that.
You can immediately tell that this is an Elder Scrolls game but dont let that fool you. There are a lot of changes behind Skrim. One of the most obvious changes is with the skill system. The skills themselves are pretty much the same. You have Alchemy, Illusion, Conjuration, Destruction, Restoration, Alteration, Enchanting, Heavy Armor, Light Armor, Block, One Handed, Two Handed, Archery, Sneak, Lockpicking, Pickpocket, Speech and a new one Smithing. The big difference lies in the fact that you now have specialty skills for each skill category and there are multiple branching paths one can take. For example, the Stealth skill has two different branches that one can take, one that focuses on stealth (Muffled Movement, Light Foot, Silent Roll, ect.) and one that focuses on blade skills (Backstab, Deadly aim, and Assassins blade). This ultimately adds a significant amount of depth to character progression and it also adds to the games re-playability factor as there are now so many different avenues one can take. On top of this there are no longer character classes. You still have the different races of character to choose from but choosing a class is history. What kind of character you become (Spellcaster, Fighter etc.) is solely dependent on the skills you choose to upgrade or in other words its dependent on how you play your character. Personally I love this new system as it doesn't lock you into a specific mold for your character and it leaves everything open for you to explore. Its just a far more organic system and ultimately I think its a significant step forward for this series in regards to character development.
Another big change is with the menu system and this is easily one of the best changes made in this game. The new menu system is just far more intuitive. Basically the menu system has been broken down into 4 distinct categories. There is Skills, Items, Map, and Magic. You have to press the menu button to access the menu but once you do that, you no longer need to press buttons. Simply press the left stick in the direction of the menu you want and it automatically changes. Once you have done this, a new subsystem of selections will come up and pressing the left stick to the right will take you to the next menu and so on. No button pressing needed. Basically the left thumb stick controls all of your movements within the menu system, with no button pressing needed. I may not have described it very well but its hands down one of the best menu systems I have ever used. Again, its just a far more intuitive system and it just has a great feel to it. You never leave the main screen when accessing menu's. It just blurs out a bit and acts as a background to the menus themselves. This basically does two things, it helps to keep the menus from detracting from the game itself and it ultimately makes the menu system far more attractive. They have also updated the item menu with 3 dimensional representations of the in game items. You can now spin items around a 360 degree axis, both vertical and horizontal. Its a small detail but a very cool one, especially for the weapons and armor.
I also have to mention the skill menu as the way they have graphically laid this system out is...well, its nothing short of stunning. Each individual skill is represented by a constellation in the sky and beautiful gaseous nebula act as a background to the constellations. The visual effect is gorgeous. You can cycle left or right through the skills/constellations and when you access the branching skill set associated with each skill, you suddenly zoom into the constellation itself and the different branching skills are suddenly represented by the individual stars in that particular constellation. Its kind of difficult to properly explain but trust me, the effect is not only stunning, its also nothing short of ingenious. Its EASILY one of the best, if not the best, molds of form and function I have seen yet in videogames. Words simply cant do this games art direction justice. It really has to be seen firsthand to be fully appreciated.
Combat has also been overhauled and what we wind up with is a system that is far more fluid, and ultimately a lot more fun, than previous releases. Characters are now able to duel wield both weapons and spells and can even mix up the two. In other words, you can assign a sword to one hand and a spell to another hand or you can go with a staff in one hand and a spell in the other. You can mix it up anyway you want. This new system fits perfectly with the new character system (that being one with no character classes). By adding so many options in regards to how to approach combat, they have essentially added strategy to the mix, something that was entirely lacking in Oblivion. Well, short of actually picking what character class you were actually going to play in oblivion. Basically the combat is just far superior to what we had with Oblivion. Unfortunately you can no longer assign weapons and spells to the D-pad and this is really one of my only complaints with the game. I dont understand why Bethesda decided to get rid of this. They could have even split the D-pad field in two, to accommodate the dual wielding nature of the game. In other words, they could have made the 4 slots on the left for the left hand and the 4 right slots on the right for the right hand. That would still have given you 4 quick slots for each hand.
There are lots of other aspects to this game that have been updated but I will leave the rest of them for the player to discover and while there are lots of new additions to Skyrim, fortunately there is also a lot that hasn't changed. Traveling is still done the same way. Once you have actually discovered a location you have the option to fast travel to that location. There are still lots of different factions that one can join, all of which have additional quests associated with them. You can still go about playing the game as you want. You still collect herbs and ingredients for potions. There are still hundreds of different books that one can read. I could go on and on and on and on. This is an Elder Scrolls game after all and Bethesda has kept the heart of the game intact and that is a very good thing indeed. I wont go into the story aspect of this game as I hate spoilers. I will just say that the main story line is fantatstic and is really the icing on the cake.
Bottom line - I am a huge Elder Scrolls fan and I have been watching this game since it was first announced. To say my expectations were extremely high would be a massive understatement. With that being said, Skyrim is everything that I hoped for and then some. It hasn't just raised the bar, its launched it into the stratosphere. If your an Elder Scrolls fan then buying this should be a no brainer. This is the kind of game people buy consoles for and this is easily Bethesda's best work yet in regards to this series. They have just taken this franchise to a whole new level. Thankfully, I have lots of time in the coming months to discover all that this game has to offer and make no mistake about it, what this game has to offer....well, its limited only by the amount of time you spend with it.
Outstanding, simply outstanding!
143 of 171 found the following review helpful:
Thousands of More Hours Off My LifeNov 11, 2011
By PS2 Bruce Oh, my. Well, I have been playing Oblivion since its release (about 7 characters that got around level 47, with about 300 hours each), and now, finally, last night (midnight launch, yay). I was able to start playing Skyrim. This IS one of the very few games that "lives up to the hype." I know I don't have to go into detail, those of you who are also playing it, especially if you have been along for the Elder Scrolls evolution journey, know EXACTLY what I am talking about. Those few of you trolls, that like to post poor reviews on games like this, just to get all of us riled up, guess what, I just ignore you.
Anyway, this will be sort of brief, because, first, I only have a few hours in (dang it I fell asleep at about 0400), and, more importantly, after this I'm getting right back to it. Without being too "spoilery," as they say at Bethesda, you start out (as usual), as a prisoner. You get asked a question that throws you into "character creation." Something happens (like last time) that will facilitate your escape. This first "quest" is basically a tutorial for you; like last time, once you exit this area and come out into the world, you are free to either continue the main story quest, or do whatever you like. Also as before, you have picked up quite a bit of gear relative to your beginning encumbrance (I started at 300). So, first thing I did of course, was look for a shop, and sold most of that stuff off, and made me some gold. Right now, I'm just exploring on my own; I already have the next stops in the main quest, and about 5 other side or miscellaneous quests, acquired by just talking to folks, in my journal.
On the difference in "skills" and "leveling:" I like it. The way it works now, instead of simply getting to 50 in a skill, and becoming a "journeyman," when you level up (I'm level 2 now), you go to a menu that looks like constellations in the skey, and you pick whether to increase your Health, Magicka, or Stamina. Then, comes the cool part...you receive a "perk;" you can either spend the perk you receive then, or save it for later. You can use a perk when you meet the skill level it requires, and have the pre-requisite perk already (i.e. you can't use one perk to jump from novice to master...you have to move up the 'skill tree' in order). What all this means is, YOU can select what you become expert at; you can be a warrior character and rise quickly to master of illusion etc. I like this MUCH better than Oblivion's "rest and meditate on what you have learned," etc.
The main reason the Elder Scrolls games are my favorites is, they are that rare "open world" "open choice" game. You can do the main quest, and nothing else. You can spend hundreds of hours wandering on your own, clearing out caves, fighting bandits, etc, and never touch any quests at all. You can do a faction quest, and nothing else. You can be a good knight (if you don't do the theives guild/dark brotherhood quests), or go around killing everyone you see. It's ALL up to you.
Well I can't stand it, I'm going to save this review, and go play Skyrim for the rest of the day. If you have the game, you know what I'm talking about. if you don't, get it. The words highly recommended don't do it justice. As far as how I would rate it: 5 out of 5 10 out of 10, you get the idea.
Ok really, I'm going now. GET THIS GAME.
30 of 34 found the following review helpful:
Skyrim: who needs drugs when you have this game?Nov 16, 2011
By M. DiSpirito
Greetings! Yes, this game is ridiculously great. I'll put this review down in three short parts: (1) for those who are new to the Elder Scrolls; (2) for the veterans of Elder Scrolls / Fallout 3 / sandbox games; (3) general thoughts and comments about the game itself.
Quick background: I was madly in love with Morrowind and Fallout 3; I wasn't too crazy about Oblivion for many reasons, which are irrelevant right now. I loathe standard FPS games with linear storytelling and rinse-repeat trigger-twitching action. I play old school dungeons and dragons (paper and pencils, yes) and Lord of the Rings is the greatest fantasy tale ever (along with the Belgariad).
(1) For the unblooded: the open world of Skyrim can and will be daunting; you aren't given any clear-cut goals--or maybe you're given too many! That deer in the headlights, "what do I do now?", sensation is perfectly normal. Sit back and imagine yourself in an alternate reality; exactly, now you have it! Figure out the controls and character management stuff (read the dang manual!) and the rest is completely up to your imagination! Save your game often (every time you do something, basically) and experiment with anything you can think of; in no time flat, you'll realize this game is amazing.
(2) For the grognards: assuming you've played Morrowind, Oblivion, and Fallout 3, then Skyrim will feel comfy. It feels bigger and more inspiring thanks to the soaring mountains and the astounding soundtrack. The action is fantastic and the new addition of trigger dual-wielding is a lot of fun--experiment with all the combinations (like smacking a foe with fire & ice spells simultaneously). Bethesda really simplified character creation and levelling, but they added in a robust Perk tree for every skill that presents a bewildering array of choices; I mean bewildering in that it's agonizing to choose which one to choose! The Perks actually have a dramatic impact on the game though, so whatever direction you go is bound to be exciting. The interface is a lot cleaner and easier to access than any game before, including Fallout. I'd say Skyrim is closer to Fallout in terms of how it feels when you're playing, but the world feels unique and interesting like it was in Morrowind; the best of both worlds, baby. Dragons are fantasy at its best, and they feel appropriately tough. The best encounters come when the dragon roars and swoops overhead, building up that anticipation; there are different types of them, so be wary if you beat one down easily because the next one might not be so cake.
(3) General thoughts: I haven't had the game crash, not even once. The load times off the HDD are less than 30 seconds and much shorter for small transitions like shops. There are definitely some graphic hiccups and texture issues, but it's not constant nor bad enough to break the spell of immersion. There is so much to do in this game that you could easily stay in one province of Skyrim and max out your level. Be careful with the difficulty setting, as some enemies are nearly indestructable on anything but normal, whereas the toughest enemies are sometimes far too easy when the difficulty is lowered. You'll notice classic Elder Scroll follies, like a bandit kingpin beating you down faster than a pair of angry dragons--but that's present in almost every game that tries to keep it challenging. It's better than Oblivion and much more like Fallout 3.
The best character and most amazing thing about Skyrim is the world itself. I've spent time simply gazing at the aurora lights or galactic clouds visible in the night sky; I've stood atop a lonely mountain in a snowstorm and just listened to the noise; I've stalked massive elk through sun-dappled pine forests; I've floated on an iceberg in the Sea of Ghosts, watching veils of fog swallow the land; I've walked with herds of mammoths across the tundra; I've delved into forgotten, undead-haunted halls where the slightest noise sends chills up your spine.
Enjoy, my friends.
202 of 251 found the following review helpful:
Simply: It's the Game of the YearNov 11, 2011
By Kylar Stern After 200+ hours of personal gameplay, Skyrim truly is the genre-defining game in which all future RPG's will be measured against. It is MASSIVE -- so large and all-encompassing that it would literally take months to complete 99% of it. With the expected staggered DLC to come out, Skyrim would then be potentially limitless in its replay value, becoming the first true open-ended gaming console experience. The world of Skyrim is breathtaking in its graphical interface, soaring musical score, and simplistic but effective dual-armed controls. There are some initial bugs, but nothing major that are not being patched as time goes by. The third major patch update (12/20/11) has eliminated most of them that I can tell. The release-day issues largely centering around the high-res textures of close-up objects (e.g. your character's hands look blurry or lack detail) are completely gone, as well as the moments of LAG (frame rate drops that cause a stuttering or jerkiness picture). Shadows, textures, and the amazing scenery and sky are now in full Bethesda Game Studio glory. WOW -- you have no idea until you experience it. Bethesda has done an outstanding job making this game the ultimate RPG ever.
**BETHESDA WINS VGA GAME OF THE YEAR** Update 12/20/11: a few days ago, the Video Game Industry awarded it's highest achievement of the year to Skyrim as it's Video Game of the Year, along with several other awards, including Best Studio. Congrats, all!! As the 2012 gaming season unfurls the last of these console generation's banner games, Skyrim will no doubt be left on top. Bethesda lead the next-gen console gaming RPG world with Oblivion and closed it out with Skyrim. Now, three more years to wait for the new consoles. And yet Skyrim will be there to fill that gap for RPG fans. Yes, Skyrim is that big and expandable. And, yes, sadly, it will match up with any game that is set to release in the next 18 months (including Bioshock: Infinite).
Skyrim is not simply the best overall reviewed and awarded Game of the Year, it is also the most personal. While Uncharted 3 and Batman: Arkham City of 2011 are both great games (with Portal 2 and Zelda's Skyward Sword also nominated this past 2011 year), Skyrim is a much more self-centered experience, offering an almost complete immersion into its fascinating and exciting world. No other video game this year (or in the last decade) has come close to its densely-packed and lushly-filled open-world environment. It's rare that a game with this much pre-hype has lived up to its own stratospheric expectations, and then go on to excel and exceed them. BUT SKYRIM IS THAT GAME! I am confident that you and I will be playing it still for months (if not years) to come.
It should be noted that even though Skyrim is a stand-alone gaming experience, with no prior Elder Scrolls games knowledge necessary for enjoyment, it also righteously follows in its own legendary footsteps and lore of past games like Oblivion, expanding upon it in a way that veterans of the Elder Scrolls universe will not find disappointing. This is also NOT a FPS/3PS fast-paced warfare game: those people looking for COD / BF3 / HALO-type frenetic multiplayer experiences should stay away. This is not your type of game. YOU SHALL NOT PASS! Skyrim is intended to be explored over time, wondered at in awe, and is pure escapist entertainment. It is the closest thing to a living, breathing second-life that you will have in a video game reality, leaving you with plenty of goose bump and hair-raising moments in its wake.
An incredible achievement: 9.9 / 10 . . .
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