Customer Review

274 of 297 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enthralling, 13 Nov. 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (PC DVD) (DVD-ROM)
If you're reading this, you must have at least some idea of what to expect, but these are my feelings after ~20 hours of play (only just scratching the surface really).

The good:
Beautiful - Even on my 4-year old Quad core XP PC with a Nvidia 8800GT, the game still looks pretty damn good, and plays well enough to not notice any serious framerate issues. Quality settings are mostly medium (although the autodetect wanted to set low)
Immersive - Skyrim feels much more of a functioning world than Oblivion or Morrowind. There are plenty of background incidents going on all over town (and out in the country). I've even seen a pack of wolves chasing a deer that I had startled.
Music - Perfect. Background music that doesn't annoy, but subtly warns of impending danger.
Crafting - Nicely done. The opportunity to mine several different ores, smelt them into even more varieties of metal; and then turn them into armour and weapons. You can improve existing gear as well: no more rusty iron greatsword!

The bad:
Steam - OK, Steam has its plus points; but I don't always want to wait for Steam to check for its own and the game's updates and log into my account etc etc, which means I have to wait several minutes before I can even hit 'play'.
The map - What were they thinking of? Stupid semi-isometric map. It can be really difficult to see where some locations are due to the clouds and the mountains on the map blocking the view of roads and smaller places.

The unforgivable:
The UI - Yes, it's a console port, but there really isn't ANY excuse for the bodged up implementation of un-mappable keys, randomly unclickable screen hotspots and HUGE fonts. It took me 30mins to work out how to drop something that I'd picked up by accident because I had deviated from the standard keymapping. Hint: don't try mapping anything to non-standard mouse buttons (like wheel click) - they may work in game, but not in your inventory menus. Also, too many functions try to share the same key, but you only find this out when one of them doesn't work in avery instance.

Overall:
Hours of fun, only spoiled by the failings of the console based design.

EDIT:
Ha! You can rotate the map! Right click while looking at the map allows you to see behind the mountains which otherwise limit the zoom level. That's much better.
However, why isn't this documented (at least in such a way that I could find it)?

ANOTHER EDIT:
Now 50+ hours in. Skyrim is huge! I've still only visited 3 of the main towns. I just love the way there are unscripted (?) 'incidents' all over the place. I've seen bandits attacking a giant, bandits attacking necromancers, hunters in competition with wolves for the same deer.
Even the UI niggles have largely worn off :)
And now the good mods are starting to come out... Poor console players ;)
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Comments

Tracked by 8 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 31 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 14 Nov 2011 10:23:22 GMT
Seafireliv says:
Good review, marking out plus and negs. thanks.

Posted on 14 Nov 2011 11:03:19 GMT
DKL says:
Good review without turning into a rant. Thank you.

Posted on 14 Nov 2011 20:01:36 GMT
Fraggle says:
Good review - but I would comment on the UI.

The UI is definitely designed with consoles in mind and I am a big PC game fan. I generally prefer ASDW and mouse, and poor UI design in console ports annoys the heck out of me.

But - and please don't pillory me - there are 1 or 2 PC games which in my opinion work very well with a gamepad, and this is one of them. I'd recommend getting the x-box controller for PC for this game and it really is very, very intuitive.

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Nov 2011 01:01:02 GMT
Last edited by the author on 15 Nov 2011 01:01:33 GMT
Seafireliv says:
You wouldn`t and shouldn`t be pilloried at all for critcising a part of the game if it`s at fault, make no apologies.

However, I wish people would not assume that we all have xboxes or own xbox controllers, cos we don`t and I, for one, am not about to go out and buy one for my Pc.

So the PC UI problem is still a big negative.

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Nov 2011 08:09:44 GMT
Same here I dislike to use gamepads on my pc as well from xbox, px or what they are called... it may steem from my dislike for games designed for consoles being ported too much in a poor condition.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Nov 2011 08:15:30 GMT
The UI may well be fine on a controller, but I just can't get on with controllers. I just run around looking at the floor the whole time... :(

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Nov 2011 09:09:43 GMT
DKL says:
You shouldn't have to purchase a controller just to play this game properly in the first place.

Posted on 17 Nov 2011 19:48:30 GMT
After you've installed the game you don't have to use Steam to start the game; make a shortcut to the game executable, usually something like Program Files/Steam/steamapps/common/skyrim/TESV.exe
If you want to check for updates and alter your options, run skyrimlauncher.exe instead (which uses Steam)

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2011 13:55:26 GMT
Last edited by the author on 18 Nov 2011 14:01:06 GMT
Seafireliv says:
@Michael taylor:

Are you sure? have you tried this for yourself. Every Steam game I have had still goes to steam first before running the game.

What I suspect is happening with you is you already have Steam running in the background cos you never have it off (it probably starts when your PC starts). You probably have your password automatically saved so you don`t need to do it yourself. If that`s the case, then your game will run and look as if Steam`s not there because Steam will automatically check on you online straight away you started up.

But it is there. All the time.

Y`know what annoys me about Steam is just how cunning this program is (as made by Valve). It does loads of things to look ok, when it`s not. It says it`s in `Offline` mode but will still go Online and phone home if you`re connected to the net. It never advertises Steam until you start to install. You can stop it starting with your PC, but must find it and configure it to do that. How many people bother configuring Steam when they first get it? Few.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Nov 2011 19:01:36 GMT
Yes Steam is attrocious, especially as it downloads GBs in the background without people realising, all the while eating their bandwidth... I hate it.
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