The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Preview for Xbox 360

On: Xbox 360PS3PC
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9Out of 10
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The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim screenshot
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim screenshot

The geography is significantly more mountainous than in former Elder Scrolls games, and while the landscape might be a similar size to the one found in Oblivion it's an altogether more complex environment thanks to the myriad of jutting land masses poking up all over the place. At one point we glance upon the largest mountain of the game - dubbed 'the throat of the world' - that consists of 7000 steps to its peak and almost completely fills the screen, despite the character being a considerable distance away.

Weather effects are dynamic, which enables the design team to create more intricate environments because they don't require multiple assets for each rock, twig, and roof. Seasons don't change in the game, however.

Then there's the world map, which is now rendered entirely in-engine and comes with a swishy zooming-out effect when you switch to it. Howard uses it to point out Riverwood, a logging town complete with a water wheel, cobbled streets, external wooden beams, and stone walls.

Riverwood is just the tip of the iceberg, existing as a fringe outpost in-between the five main cities of the region. Skyrim itself is made up of nine districts, each bigger than Riverwood. The finished game will contain over 120 mission-specific dungeons and over 100 points of interest relating to smaller quests.

In the demonstration we stop by a shop to pick up a quest entitled The Golden Claw from shopkeeper Lucan Valerius. Lucan, coincidentally, has a cheese wheel on his counter that's actually bigger than my head.

Talking to Lucan is effortless, and the neat and tidy overlays don't freeze you into position for the length of the conversation - you can wander about, break the conversation, and return to it at the same spot later on. The trader wants the player to head off into Bleak Falls Barrow, a nearby ancient Nordic temple nestled within a mountain, and retrieve his Golden Claw (presumably priceless, of course) from bandits who've nicked off with it.

Leave the shop and Lucan's sister, Camilla, walks and talks with you as you progress up the mountain. These sections, similar to those used in games like Red Dead Redemption or GTA 4, streamline the experience to allow players interested in the incidental details to experience them, while those who just fancy a bit of heroic questing can freely barrel up the mountain and ignore it entirely.

On the way up you run into trolls and bandits, and Howard dispatches these monsters by showing off the game's refined dual-wielding system. Spells can be equipped alongside weapons, or just in each hand for double the effect, and you can also choose to swing a couple of one-handed weapons in place of a traditional shield.

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User Comments

budred123's Avatar


excellent info, but can you jump on this game or not
Posted 04:25 on 07 August 2011
clangod's Avatar


Looks absolutely fantastic. I'm not entirely sure the game itself would appeal to be but I'm gonna give it a go simply because the world they have created looks so utterly epic I want to be a part of it.
Posted 14:12 on 19 April 2011
RSHunter's Avatar


Excitement levels rising
Posted 13:21 on 19 April 2011
Clockpunk's Avatar


November is going to be a very expensive month, both financially *and* time-wise.
Posted 13:03 on 19 April 2011
scaz2244's Avatar


looks amazing, sounds amazing looks like november is going to be expensive
Posted 12:22 on 19 April 2011
thompo555's Avatar


Brilliant preview! Got me drooling!

What I want to know is how good in the Archer class? I want to upgrade it to a legolas like spec! Archery is my favourite! :p I can see this in my disk drive for a very long time!
Posted 23:15 on 18 April 2011
Mr_Ninjutsu's Avatar


Man can't wait! Been waiting for a game to succeed Oblivion :D SexyJams i know you'll love it! Have you played Elder Scrolls IV:Oblivion?
Posted 22:33 on 18 April 2011
Bloodstorm's Avatar


Fapping so hard!
Posted 22:10 on 18 April 2011
p0rtalthinker's Avatar


Oooh goodness I can't wait any longer!
Posted 21:06 on 18 April 2011
SexyJams's Avatar


Hell yeah!
I think that I'd love this game :)
Posted 20:06 on 18 April 2011

Game Stats

Technical Specs
Release Date: 11/11/2011
Developer: Bethesda Softworks
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Genre: RPG
No. Players: One
Rating: BBFC 18
Site Rank: 813 135
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