UPDATE FROM THE COMMENTS BELOW:
Those of you who keep track of the gaming world might be aware that the next Elder Scrolls Game, Skyrim, will be out on 11/11/11 (those of you who are in the process of passing on your genes might want to read this, by the way). I’m going to be buying it for certain, even though I’m writing this now.
It will be a hefty disappointment (for me at least), no matter what Bethesda do, and here’s why:
Dragons won’t be right
My friends have a running joke that I have a fetish for dragons (I don’t) because I had a slightly drunken rant about why dragons get a hard press. In my mind, Dragons are rather aesthetically pleasing creatures (This being one of my favourites), and I feel like every time that we see them used in any medium, be it film, book or game, they’re portrayed as world destroyers, or as treasure pilferers. It drives me insane, and we already know that we’re going to have to kill these creatures to get powerful abilities.
I’m not saying that we shouldn’t kill those who are evil and trying to breathe fire on us. I’m just saying that we could probably stop killing a creature automatically just because it can breathe fire. How To Train Your Dragon made people remember how awesome they are, so let’s have some dragons that we aren’t trying to kill, eh, Bethesda?
You won’t be able to play it as a thief
This has always been one of my main gripes of the Oblivion series. I’m a heartless backstabbing bastard and my play style works in the same way. Why would I go and be the boring fighter who moves towards them making “clunk” sounds and swinging an axe when sneaking forward with a speedy dagger with a myriad of poisons can do the job just as well.
Oblivion’s main quest wasn’t just boring fantasy fare, it was difficult to play it as a sneaky man/woman/tiger/fish-thing. The plot lines revolved around walking into battlefields or demonic lands, and sneaking doesn’t work if they already know you’re there.
Combat will be clunky
We still haven’t worked out how to do combat effectively. Hack and Slash games have been trying for a long time, but even recent offerings (like that game that steals pretty much everything from another game, which you may know as Darksiders) haven’t managed to create a fluid combat dynamic where momentum actually matters.
What I’d like is physical wounds being made, as well as a proper stumble if you get hit. I’m fed up of hitting someone with my daggers of doom and nothing really happening.
Now, I’m willing to trust Bethesda to fix all of these things. However, even if they don’t, I’m still going to be sucked in to Skyrim. I’ll just make occasional rants to everyone who’ll listen – as well as those who are won’t.
Patrick Rose is General Editor of How To Play while trying to get a Computer Science degree at Sheffield University. His twitter is @drugcrazed and you can usually find him on Steam under the name Drug Crazed Dropkick