After being very late to the party with Oblivion (I played the game earlier this year), I was really hyped up for Skyrim. Part of my reason for wanting to play Oblivion after so long was that I wanted to play it before Skyrim released, because Skyrim looked like a great game. This was a great decision, because I absolutely loved Oblivion, and Skyrim is a major improvement on that. If you’re into western RPGs, Skyrim is one you should definitely not miss out on, and it’s one of the most polished games Bethesda has developed this generation.
This is the first Elder Scrolls game for a while now, with the last one being released as early as 2006. Since then Bethesda has worked on the Fallout franchise, and said that they had learned a lot from developing Fallout for consoles. When you see the game for the first time, this is evident, there are a lot of Fallout influences in Skyrim, but they do not seem out of place. The PlayStation 3 version of Skyrim has a 4GB install, but it’s not too painful.
Skyrim isn’t a direct sequel to The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, even though the Skyrim area was referenced in Oblivion. Skyrim takes place 200 years after the events of the previous game, so you need little to no knowledge of that game to play this one. The whole game takes place in the midst of a civil war as different factions try to take control of the Empire. There are references throughout Skyrim to places you may have visited in Oblivion, but again, this is a completely different story, and the main focus of it is the dragons. Your character is the last of the Dragonborn, a person who has the power to kill dragons, and you’re chosen to defend the world from them and their leader. The story is actually quite good, and is very different to what you’d expect from Oblivion, but there are still a lot of gameplay elements that will feel familiar.
As is always the case nowadays, you can customize your character in the beginning of the game. There are several races you can choose from, all of which were present in Oblivion. The automatic choice is Nord, as the game has several Nordic influences, and the entire area of Skyrim is really the Nordic homeland. The biggest differences with the character customization is that the character you create will now look much more realistic, and there are many more options to choose from. It is also simpler now because you do not need to choose a birth sign or a class when you begin the game, and can level up your character whichever way you wish.