The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Review (Xbox 360)

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You’ll need to crawl dungeons for magic scrolls that you can read to learn new magical powers, or else you can buy some in shops. Nobody is going to just hand these over to you. Too, you’ll only find new dragon shout words in dungeons, and you’ll definitely want those, and dungeons are the place to find potions without paying out the ass for them at the shops. Some of these are really cool; I found one potion that turned be invisible for a time.

The best magic, really, you’ll find in dungeons, although you can probably get what you need from the college of magic in Winterhold. Speaking of which, the College of Winterhold was probably my favorite part of the game, as I normally went through it magic-less. Studying at the college serves as a magic tutorial of sorts, which I enjoyed, and Winterhold is in the snowy far north surrounded by glaciers, and so it was–for me–in the best area of the world. You’ll want to try out the college as soon as you can.

Technically speaking, the game is certainly an accomplishment, and not just because they managed to fit this entire massive world on a single disc. They also managed to make it look good, particularly next to the muddy visuals of Oblivion and Fallout 3. While textures do lose detail when you look at them them too closely, they look gorgeous from every other distance.

And people look good, too. The old joke goes that you couldn’t make attractive people on the old engine, but that’s certainly not the case here. The character creator is far more nuanced and effective this time around; my cat person looked positively delicious, and, finally, humans look like humans.

Perhaps most profound of all, I found no bugs in this game during the entirety of my time with it. At this point we expect Bethesda games to ship filled with goofs, but there are none that I could see. I have heard about some minor bugs in the PC version, but my Xbox 360 copy seems to be bug-free. So that’s great.

There are a few aspects of the game that haven’t really been improved from Oblivion, which are the voice acting and character animations. Characters move just as stiffly as always, and the voice actors tend to speak lines like they’re reading them for the first time. The major exception to that is veteran screen actor Max Von Sydow, who reads his lines like he’s having fun with the part. It was a delight to hear him talk, particularly next to all the other punchless actors in the game.

That brings me to my biggest complaint about the game: the dialogue options. Quite simply, the dialogue in Skyrim is hardly dynamic, as most of your options simply allow for more detailed exposition from the characters you’re speaking with. There is the rare occasion where you need to convince somebody of something, and those conversations are fun, but for the most part the dialogue is superfluous.

Those complaints I have, though, are so slight when put next to the grandeur that is every other aspect of this game. Skyrim is that rare game that I will keep playing long after the time I spent playing it for this review ends, and that’s the best compliment I can think of to pay a game like this.

You want Skyrim. It’s just about everything you wanted from a new Elder Scrolls game, and it has dragons, too. What more could you ask for?

 

Pros:

  • Immersive, thoroughly engaging game world
  • It’s one of the biggest games I’ve ever played in terms of content
  • Max von Sydow does great work
  • I enjoyed fighting dragons
  • No bugs

Cons:

  • Dialogue options usually seems superfluous
  • The main story could be more engrossing

Final Score: 90/100

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12 Comments on The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Review (Xbox 360)

JosephPS3

On November 12, 2011 at 6:02 am

Okay that’s it, I don’t need to buy another game. Got the game and not only will you be spending hours playing the main missions and side missions, you’ll also be spending hours and hours just exploring this world. Wandering off and seeing whats behind that hill or road. Its like you’re living in this world. Amazing game. GOTY contender in my opinion. This and UC3.

curiozitati stiati ca

On November 12, 2011 at 7:23 pm

I like it. I wanna buy, two word and say no mre : “Amazing game”

Kyle

On November 12, 2011 at 10:18 pm

How is this a 90/100? The cons are barely existent and are almost unnoticeable compared to the vast hours of gameplay and enormous amount of content. This game is a masterpiece and deserves 100/100. 95/100 at the least..

Armenia4ever

On November 13, 2011 at 5:05 am

The dialogue is superfluous in Skyrim and Oblivion, unlike Morrowind, but at the same time I’m not sure they could do alot about the dialogue options without removing the voice-overs for them completely.

With voice-overs being the standard, you would be looking at an insane amount of scripted lines with varying voice tones, pitch, ect for each actor to cover. I wonder if they could really have done much to rectify this.

Adam

On November 14, 2011 at 7:46 pm

I found this review to be very poor. To me, it seemed like the reviewer really had no prior knowledge of the elder scrolls saga. The voices in this game were one of the major factors that Bethesda had focused on. Your lack of research really made it hard for me to completely read your review.

really adam?

On November 14, 2011 at 8:45 pm

There are plenty of moments where the poor dialogue/voice acting draws you out of the immersion of the game, especially in moments where you don’t even initiate the conversation. This has always been an issue for bethesda and everyone knows it, and just because they focused on fixing it doesn’t mean they actually fixed it. I love the game so far, but this assessment seems fair.

derek

On November 15, 2011 at 2:26 pm

skyrim is the best game ever made so far

Miguel

On November 16, 2011 at 6:21 pm

It’s an amazing game. I think it’s the best of all of the Elder Scrolls games. :D

Patrick

On November 18, 2011 at 9:27 am

Hey if you want to get this game for a cheaper price then the local store here is a link. http://www.gamefront.com/skyrim-review-xbox-360/

Rick

On November 19, 2011 at 4:52 am

I was surfing around for a free video game download and found a site giving away the Xbox 360 for Free. Some sort of Consumer Rewards deal. Not sure how it works exactly or who is paying for the games, maybe the manufacturer, or advertisers. IT took about 3 weeks to come in, I had actually forgotten that I submitted my email and address with them. But it works, Now The site is even more updated with XBOX Consoles, A Red Nintendo Wii, and more. The site is http://thefamilyexchange.com/free Im going back to get more free stuff.

Wet Taco

On January 17, 2012 at 9:45 pm

Nords are