WeView Verdict: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Well I thought there would be a little controversy with Skyrim, and it seems I was right. I think this is the only time I’ve seen people give different rating for the game based on a platform; the consensus seems to be that if you really want to play Skyrim the PC is the place to do it and the PS3 version is to be avoided at all costs. With Bethesda’s track record that’s hardly the most surprising of outcomes, although hopefully they’ll keep working on patches to pull the whole experience together.

Moving on from the bugs and glitches that many of you were keen to comment on, lets get to some of your views of the game itself. Something that cropped amongst several of you was the game’s ability to affect the flow of time. For example a mildly confused tonycawley noted that he would “stick Skyrim on for a half hour session, [and] turn it off 6 hours later wondering what exactly just happened to the day.”

[drop2]That’s not a negative for the game, in fact it’s obviously quite the opposite. The fact that the game does such a good job of pulling you into its world was also noted by Nylon_Crash. “I am drawn in, hours pass in a blur but in a good way,” they commented, clearly only taking a break from Skyrim to write about it.

So just why are people so drawn in, and why are some of you investing upwards of 200 hours into the title? Well to pull from what colmshan1990 had to say “The world of Skyrim is massive, stunning, and there’s always something new to do.”

This was something that came up more than a few times, people talking about the size of the world and the variety it offers. However, the scale might not be for everyone with tactical20 noting that it was “Just all too daunting” for them, so they’ve been “playing FIFA 12 instead.” I’m sure that’s understandable with a game like Skyrim.

tactical20 wasn’t the only one to display doubts about the title. In fact, although the game’s world may be huge and deep many of you seemed to be underwhelmed by the RPG elements of the title. “Skyrim is a great game but it isn’t really a deep RPG sadly,” Said Sympozium before concluding that it was “a bit over-rated”.

Others found various faults with the game, but it seems that R4U Eldave0 managed to sum up just about everyone’s thoughts about the game nicely. He had this to say:

Massive, atmospheric, gripping, frustrating, repetitive and buggy. Truely one of the best (and worst) games of 2011.

I don’t really think you can say much more than that about Skyrim.

With that round-up on your varying opinions of the game covered, it’s time to move onto counting up your verdicts. This was a bit complicated this week with some of you deciding to give different verdicts depending on the platform. Rather than try and decode these I’ve excluded these from the count, as I think you’ll see it wouldn’t have swung the verdict around too much. There were also a handful of you who forgot to rate the game after giving your opinion, so please remember to include it in future if you want it to count!

So, here’s the result in reverse order. First up is Avoid It, which absolutely no-one selected as their verdict. Next up was Bargain Bin It, with two of you selecting that after spending time slaying dragons. In second place was Rent It, with three votes. So the winner, with an overwhelming fourteen votes was Buy It. Buggy though it may be, it seems that Skyrim is more than worth playing.

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68 Comments

  1. just waiting for a sub 20 quid price and a few more patches and i should be playing it xmas 2012

    • Exactly, the same opinion the title. I will simply wait for tons of patches and if they don’t some….well, Demon Souls? Dark Souls? Dragons Dogma? there’s plenty to choose from :)

  2. I’m scared of buying it for my PS3

    • I sold my unopened PS3 copy of it just after Christmas. I got a new computer that should be able to run it fine, and I loved Oblivion on PC, so this was a natural next step. I’m in no hurry to play it though, so I’ll wait for it to drop in price.

    • My bro got it for me for my birthday in december, don’t have another system so was option less, and used the PS3 version. Only put 40 hours in so far, it’s fine for me. After 6 hours or so it slows down a little (and only in certain places), but a restart sorts that out. I can only assume after I play for longer it will start slowing permanently. Might just finish the main quest then see how many things I can get after using a wiki to prioritise. Pretty f*****g annoying. I’ll shout Bethesda into the ground if Fallout 4 is the same, although that might be next gen now… However, it does seem a tad over rated, and I just can’t get into it like I can fallout. I can play that for days. Murder some old lady, kill a ghoul, explore DC. And use VATS… Oh, I also have an overwhelming desire for a wrist mounted computer, so Fallout lets me have that :P Having said that I wouldn’t suggest skipping Skyrim, it’s amazing, but sadly, PS3 was neglected..

      • I’m almost 100 hours in and absolutely no problems whatsoever for me. Like you said, if you do a 6 hour session then it slows down and goes laggy, but save, quit game and restart and it’s sorted. I must just have got lucky because literally I’ve not experienced a single problem, just greatness!

    • I’m at around 35 hours on the PS3, and it has only crashed once (mind you, so did inFamous2), and I saw lag for about 2 seconds – that’s it.

      I would say though, that I haven’t had a longer session than 4 hours, so maybe that’s why I’ve had basically no problems (other than spending 35 hours on it).

  3. The mrs has it and is currently enjoying it. May give it a go after she has finished with it. (plenty of time until then…)

  4. The controls felt so awful on the PC I’ve not returned yet. Graphical glitches were shocking at times (Xbox and PC).

    Will return one day.

    • the controls are a bit irritating but fixed thanks to the minor tweaking mods you can get.
      i also found that there are roughly 11 must have mods that fix almost every problem, ive only had one CTD and thats when i got impatient and clicked before the main menu is fully working :D
      i dont get graphical glitches though come to think of it, and im on a 2 and a half year old alienware m15x, what are you running?

      • 6GB RAM Quadcore, ATI 6XXX Series card. The graphical glitches were bad in the sense that you sat there thinking “no…. you did NOT just do that!” but no dealbreakers. The controls were.

        I’ll return one day. Maybe. We’ll see.

        Oh, golden rule of gaming. For the millions of people who aren’t hardcore gamers. Don’t ever, EVER make the consumer struggle with playing your game (ie. controls) as you will lose them potentially forever.

        ‘Making Video Games 101’, surely.

      • fair system there :) come to think of it actually the Jarl of windhelm has no head, just eyes, is that normal? :D

      • Only 11 must have community mods to fix most of the problems? Sounds pretty consumer friendly… :P

    • Not a fan of some of the controls but didnt have any difficulty with them. Cant recall graphical glitches on my play through whereas some of the other games you and me have been playing lately (DD) has incredible amounts!

      • No glitches on anything else I have, fella. Dungeon Defenders was laggy but that was a mental level for all concerned.

        The Xbox version (of Skyrim) had my flat-mate walking into half a frikkin’ house! The floor wasn’t there. You could see all of the world. She then fell into… wait for it… Oblivion! :-P

      • Your arms and pets walk through just about every wall in Dungeon Defenders, including when in the tavern with nothing built. It’s the worst game I have for glitches such as that! I never mention it though as it is never something that has bothered me in a game, it’s very common and does not affect my experience.

        I had actually completely forgotten about the lag on DD, imagine that on a console.

      • Oh god, yes. Of course! …But we have to have a sense of scale here both in development and what the games are trying to achieve. Skyrim is busy winning award after award and I think it doesn’t deserve them quite yet. It’s like they’re being rewarded for slightly complacent testing and design. That can never be a good thing as it then becomes acceptable.

      • But I have yet to see a game that will be as hard to make and program as Skyrim. It’s like saying lets not make Star Wars in the 1970’s because the effects aren’t quite there yet. You would miss out on a fantastic piece of entertainment because things aren’t quite perfected yet.

        I appreciate Skyrim inst as much of a jump in the games industry as Star Wars was in the movie industry, but with the amount of variables and different possibilities in Skyrim it will be a big jump in difficulty to make compared to something very linear such as an FPS. It will be an absolute bug magnet with all the things that can go wrong.

        Also the irony of you being so fickle with Skyrim and me not is rather amusing :P.

      • The difference is that Lucas Arts took what they had back then and released a finished product. The movie didn’t just suddenly crash on you in the theatre or a giant green screen appeared behind a spaceship that was flying around the Death Star. Bethesda on the other hand released something that has quite a few issues. Maybe they swallowed more than they could and this is a recurring theme with their games. People already expect their games to be buggy and flawed on a minor scale. The fanbase has already embraced that fact and this is the actual problem. Skyrim is winning so many awards, they probably believe that there is nothing wrong with releasing a product in that state and thus nothing will change…

      • Skyrim wont do any of that to you either. Sure, an arm might go through a wall, or a face mess up very rarely but a Stormtrooper might bang his head on the ceiling in Star Wars. With the exception of the lag issue on PS3, you wont find the glitches in Skyrim anything out of the ordinary from modern video games.

      • It’s not the minor glitches like arms going through walls that are bothering me. It’s the lag issue on PS3, dragons flying backwards or not landing at all. The latter two might have been fixed by now, I’m not sure but that is so obvious I can’t believe it wasn’t apparent during QA. I know it’s a huge and complex game but that’s not a get out of jail free card that they can play for everything that wasn’t working when the game came out. Don’t get me wrong. It seems to be a great game and a huge portion of that is working perfectly fine for most of the users but I have to imagine being one of the people who experience game breaking bugs and I’d be pretty pissed if that was the case.

      • You can use the Sixaxis on the PC and set it up in Xbox360 compatibility mode using the MotioninJoy driver – then connect the PC to the tv and it’s just like using an enhanced PS3!
        Seriously if you like the PS3’s control scheme, which I find better than the standard PC one, then this workaround is great.

  5. Brilliant game. Had no problems with it on PC (as far as I can recall). Must return to it soon and finish it.

    Kudos to them trying something so big, complicated (to make) and impressive. Shame about the bugs on PS3, and the lashback from fans and media. In my opinion the complexity of Skyrim is like a space shuttle, with other games like a car. There is so many more things that can go wrong with the space shuttle but everyone expects it to be as reliable as the car (which isn’t very reliable!) and mostly it is does a great job at that, but due to a bad performance in one of its flights (PS3) suddenly it gets branded “a buggy POS” which just baffles me.

    Anyway, the vote shows that TSA readers aren’t that misguided so hooray for them.

    • well said.

    • Taking your analogy I’d say the PS3 version is not just a flight with questionable performance (which really wouldn’t be all that bad), it’s more like a very popular spaceship model that people are still buying while the model has known performance issues that have yet to be fixed.

      • Well it has the known performance issue which is the lag, the other problems such as dead people arriving at weddings and backwards dragons were hardly game breaking and are fixed I believe. I would also say if they shop around they wont see anyone else even offering a spaceship, just cars.

      • I agree that the minor bugs are hardly game breaking but the lag thing would still keep me well away from the game if I had the time to play it.
        There are other spaceships out there, but they might be smaller and more stable. I like the ambition of a huge spaceship but I’ll personally probably stick to the smaller, more stable ones for now. :)

      • I completely understand that, it wont be for everyone and some people would rather wait for everything to be ironed out before wanting to see such an ambitious game. I respect that.

        I just feel there is a lot more drama about the problems with this ship than there is with other ships which do a lot less! :).

      • Oh, there definitly IS more drama about the game than necessary. I personally just don’t want to risk buying a game that turns out to be broken if I’m really unlucky and I’m not that much of a fan of the franchise anyways.
        I’m glad people enjoy the game and I’d rather have the game exist with bugs than the game not existing at all. I just hope they eventually fix the major annoyances people currently are experienceing and get more bugs out of the way before the next game hits the shelves, which sadly is unlikely if they keep the engine, judging from their track record. ^^

  6. I think “avoided at all costs” is stretching it a bit. I’ve had no issues with the PS3 version apart from the occasional lag (after 115 hours i might add), but the game is so good i play through it without noticing it 95% of the time.

  7. I’ve been waiting for a significant price drop but I want to avoid the PS3 version and am currently not in the mood to play it on the PC so I started watching a playthrough of the game on Youtube by Jesse Cox (OMFGcata is his Youtube username, if anyone is interested) and I must say I’m glad I decided to do it because it seems like the kind of game that would totally frustrate me if I played it myself due to all the options the game offers which brings out my compulsion to explore everything so I don’t miss anything but it’s quite enjoyable to watch, especially with the added humor of Jesse Cox.

    Damn, that was one long-ass sentence. It’s probably full of grammar mistakes, too. ^^

    • Wait what? Too many options and you’d feel the need to explore them all? So why wouldn’t you just…explore them all?

      • Time, my friend. I lack it… Also, my gaming PC is located in my bedroom, which is not a comfortable place to be gaming in and I’m avoiding the PS3 version to play the game in my living room because of the save file lag issue. :/

      • Before anyone mentions this: I know by watching the videos I am indeed spending time that I apparently lack but the advantage is that I can watch the videos comfortably in the living room on my TV or on the tablet and I can pick it up anytime I want without having to remember all the controls after a longer break (happened to me with The Witcher 2…). Currently I’m actually rather enjoying the commentary by Jesse Cox rather than the game itself. :)

      • So you play the game over a period of months instead of weeks like with most games. You’ve not got a game that has lasted longer than any other single game you’ve ever played and still hasn’t been finished purely due to it being superb and featuring a hell of a lot of content.

        I see what you mean with the uncomfortableness, though. And whilst there is a higher chance of bugs on PS3, plenty of people haven’t had any trouble. Musky above has played 115 hours and has only experienced a bit of lag. That means I’ve experience more bugs on the PC version than he has on the PC version.

        When I experienced bugs, I just walked away. I had the backwards dragon thing once, so I just wandered off in the opposite direction and all was fine again. I’ve also had a few crashes to desktop before any of the patches appeared (fairly certain my PC was over-heating at the time, though) and a single flickering texture on a wall in Windhelm’s keep.

        The game isn’t as horrendously buggy as the internet may have you believe. If you went off of the internet outcry for, for example, 360 failure rates you’d swear that they’d been 90% at one point.

      • To be honest, I’m not a big fan of such open world RPGs in general. I gave Morrowind and Oblivion a go and in both cases I lost interest after a few hours. I just got lost. I didn’t know what I was supposed to do, I didn’t know what was happening, I constantly got harrassed for stealing something by accident, I got sick after being attacked by vampires and suddently couldn’t run anymore while being in the middle of nowhere… I want to experience it but let someone else do the dirty work for me. :D

        It’s similar to the Resident Evil franchise. It’s my Cryptonite. I am unable to win at those games. I consider myself a pretty skilled gamer, I don’t have issues with complex controls in games, but I just SUCK at Resident Evil. I couldn’t finish a game if my life depended on it. ^^

  8. i think R4U hit the proverbial nail right on its proverbial head.

    the scope is just massive, but along with that scope there are a number of issues.

    none big enough to stop me playing though.
    though i never did get those books back. >_<

    i don't think it was quite the leap forward for the series that Oblivion was though.
    but overall, bloody good game.

    • its hard to be as big a leap tbh, I mean your in first person and the world is beautiful, its full of flowers and people and monsters and irritating saber cats.
      It has magic that feels excellent, combat has been tightened up (still not great though), alchemy smithing etc etc.
      what do you expect them to add? Giant Robots? :P

      • Heeellllooooooo Dwemer Ruins. Now with added Giant robots!

      • still nothing like gundams though. *shrugs*

  9. Well after playing the likes of Monster Hunter and Darks/Demons Souls Skyrim just felt so underwhelming, still its a great world minus the annoyance of the mountains… and most annoyingly after having to reinstall Windows the save data wasn’t saved to the cloud or something which I hoped would happen but didn’t?

    Really gutted. Even Sonic Generations was saved to the cloud, what the hell?!

    So I hope I can return one day, I’ve yet to complete the main quest but that doesn’t really interest me.

  10. I enjoyed it, but found it far too buggy, and I got bored of it after a while. I still don’t understand how it passed QA and testing.

    • Strange, I’ve been playing it a lot (140+ hours with my character) since its release and the only bug I’ve seen so far is when you get clobbered by a giant and fly 500 ft in the air..

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