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My three-month-overdue final review of Skyrim

Review by ChrisA – 3/14/2012

Busy hunting

After an unexpected three month break from writing, I'm back and I'd like to talk to you about a little-known game called The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. Now I know what you're going to say: "Why would you want to write EVEN MORE about a game released like forever ago?" Well, I wrote an article about my first impressions, and I promised myself as well as some fairly other influential people in the game journalism world (wink wink, nudge nudge, say no more) that I would file a complete review once I had finished the game. 120 hours of Skyrim later with everything (within reason) completed in the game, I'm here with my final verdict.

In the first review, I said that Skyrim was brilliant. In fact, I said it was beyond brilliant. Do I still agree with this assessment? Yes and no.

This is exactly how it is in the game
This is exactly how it is in the game

It is, without doubt, a hugely ambitious game which largely succeeds, however it is this breadth of ambition in the game which ends up accentuating its flaws in many ways. Flaws which are especially noticeable when you have spent as much time in the game as I have.

The game has so much to do that you may feel overwhelmed at first. You are simultaneously encouraged to join the Companions (the equivalent of the Fighters' Guild in previous incarnations of the game), the College of Winterhold (the Mages' Guild's equivalent), the Thieves' Guild and the Dark Brotherhood, basically an Assassin's Guild. You can in fact join all of them and rise to become the head of each one of them. It's hard for me to believe that you could be the head of ALL of them though. Surely the leader of the Thieves' Guild would have a sufficiently negative reputation that the College of Winterhold, for example, wouldn't want anything to do with you?

Ultimately, a game which holds such ambition is either going to be enormous in terms of file size and take a lifetime to complete, or is going to be lacking in certain areas. Skyrim, unfortunately, is found lacking in certain respects.

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