Jen and I have had a pretty good run as a couple but there’s a mutual understanding that for the next month or so, I won’t really be seeing much of my wife. You see, the new Bethesda game The Elderscrolls V: Skyrim came out on 11/11/11 and it’s going to suck up almost all of Jen’s free time until she finishes the game. I’m told there’s something like 100 hours of content there. It’s going to take her a while to get through it all.
It’s been five years since the last Elderscrolls title came out. It’s a big milestone for Jen because The Elderscrolls IV: Oblivion (2005) was actually the game that was responsible for getting Jen hooked on playing consoles or even being much of a gamer at all. Previously, she would casually dabble in the occasional bout of Tekken with her brothers or play the odd PC game like Civilization and Commander Keen. It was the experience of playing through Oblivion that cemented her love of gaming.
I remember when Jen first learnt to play Oblivion, she wasn’t just learning the mechanics of the game, but how to navigate a three dimensional game environment using a game controller. Once she mastered that, the love of the game came naturally. For those unfamiliar with the Elder Scrolls series, it is a game franchise whose trademark is to deliver a large open world with a vast array of choices presented to the player. You can choose what kind of character you play, be they male, female, tall, short, human, elf, magician, warrior or whatever else you decide you want to be. There is a vast array of quests you can choose from and you can interact with just about anything in the game world. If there is an apple on a tree, you can pick it. If there’s a loaf of bread in a store you can buy it (or steal it). The game is all about choice, micro-management and indulging in a Dungeons & Dragons style universe. It’s like a game thats tailor-made for Jen.
She’s come a long way since finishing Oblivion six years ago, having clocked some pretty challenging and complicated games such as Fallout, Fable II & III and Dragon Age. She’s always stuck pretty closely to the fantasy RPG genre and while she’s enjoyed these other titles, she always came back to the Elder Scrolls series. And now, after five long years, there is a new installment.
I might give the game a go myself in a few months time…when I can pry it out of her hands. Until then, I’ve got a bit of spare time on my hands. I guess I might blog some more, watch some movies, maybe go outdoors…