Well, well, well. Look who has returned to the blog for the second time. Very glad to be back filling in for Joel! So I suppose it’s time to ask: “Hey, you got a second?” If you do, sweet! Kick back and read as I word vomit onto this webpage.
Rediscovering an old love
As of late I have been falling back into old habits. And by that, I mean putting way more hours than I probably should into Skyrim. We all know the game. Love it or hate it, we all know how big of an impact it made on video games. Did you know this game is already ten years old? Go figure, right? I remember playing this game way back in 2012 when I was just 14 years old. I mentioned in a submission for one of our events on the website that I have probably put almost 600 hours into this game over these 10 years. I wish I were joking, but hey, that’s what you do when you’re 14. The sheer amount of replay value this game has is astonishing. It’s not hard to create a new character and choose different skills and weapons or magic to excel in depending on the vibe you want for your playthrough. So far I’m about 30 hours into this character I have lovingly called “The Gladiator”. She is an orc that specializes in heavy armor and two handed weapons. It’s a playstyle that after all of my hours in this game I never fully explored. I was always a light armor enthusiast because of the lighter strain on your stamina bar, but hey, I seem to have been missing out. Nothing makes you feel more powerful that face tanking a group of bandits as they tickle your health bar behind 40 pounds of pure metal. It’s crazy fun.
Oh did I mention that in these 30 hours I haven’t progressed the main quest line past the first 2 hours of the game? I touched on it in that story submission from a couple months ago, but it is really easy to get sidetracked in this game. So instead of learning about the reemergence of dragons in the world and putting a stop to them, I instead became a vampire hunter, traveled to the Soul Cairn (essentially where all souls go when they are trapped or resurrected through necromancy), killed an un killable ancient dragon, earned his respect in battle, recovered two Elder Scrolls that lead me to a bow designed to kill vampires, uncovered an ancient plot of a snow elf turned vampire to use the bow for himself to thrust the world into eternal night so that vampires may rule the world, killed him, then hunted down the leader of a pure blooded vampire cult to save Skyrim and its people. I genuinely love the Dawnguard quest line. It’s every bit as fun and crazy as I remembered it. Becoming a vampire hunter, or even taking the other side of the quest and becoming a Vampire Lord is such a fun experience it makes me want to replay it for the other side. I can’t recommend this game enough, seriously. So why did I get back into it? Well just a month ago, a modding team finished a 5 year long project. This project was one that I had heard about, and I’m sure many of us who played the game dreamed of this concept becoming a reality. The mod’s name is Skyrim Together Reborn. To put it simply, it is Skyrim with cooperative multiplayer. The current version is still new, and a little buggy, but the short time I was able to play it with a group of friends, my love for this game was reignited.
Alright, alright. This is the last thing I will say about this game because I feel myself going on and on. Listen to the sound track. It has some of the best ambient music around. Everything is fantastic. So if you ever wanted to feel like you are exploring an ancient and magical land, pull it up. You won’t regret it.
A Quick MultiVersus chat
Alright I know that Joel talked about this game a bit last week, but I wanted to throw a quick 2 cents in there. This game was legitimately a surprise in how good it is. I’ve been privy to this game for a bit, I was fortunate enough to be an alpha tester (basically the first public version of the game to be put out for play testing). This included the signing of an NDA in which I wasn’t allowed to make any recordings or share the game with anyone who was not in the alpha as well. The game was good during the alpha, but it has grown into something quite amazing if I do say so myself. Joel and I were happy to participate in Zach’s tournament that he streamed on YouTube (link here):
The two characters I’ve been having to most fun with are Superman and Batman, and with Rick and Morty on their way, as well as many other exciting prospects that have been leaked like Gandalf from The Lord of The Rings and Scorpion from Mortal Kombat, it just seems like the game is only going to get crazier!
Trauma and its effect on your characters
So the last thing I want to quickly talk about here is something that I have realized about Dungeons & Dragons and character development. In the group that I play with, we alternate campaigns. One is a sci-fi fantasy hybrid while the other is more of a classic medieval fantasy. In both campaigns I’m absolutely in love with my characters. It didn’t start out that way however. I have a bad habit of creating very tragic characters. Ones that are cold and, for lack of a better term, edgy. It took a while for me to realize that these characters, while yes they can still have these tragic stories and lives, don’t have to be cold and distant. The best thing I ever did for my characters is give them a heart. I let them care and react to the world around them, caring about the other members’ problems because they are in a group, and that there are more than just the problems of my own character’s.
The other thing I’ve done, and I implore that everyone who has played Dungeons & Dragons or ever think about trying it to try, is let the Dungeon Master mess with your character. I don’t mean like tweak the character’s stats or backstory, but give the Dungeon Master permission to throw you curve balls. Let them give you situations that make you question your character’s morals. Let them throw you a really bad situation that you have to actually think through. Now there are some stipulations for this that I would recommend you consider before going through with this. Do you trust your Dungeon Master to mess with your character? Is your character one that you don’t mind going through tough situations? And can you cope with the consequences that could come from these curveballs if things don’t go the way you expect them to?
A good example of this whole thing is what my character, Klein, has recently gone through. Quick backstory: Klein was a soldier in the King’s army before the kingdom was overthrown. In a battle that he has no possibility of winning he sent in his troops, and when everyone around him died, he made a deal with something out there to save him. This deal (years after the fact) was revealed to be a powerful Vampire from a far away land. This Vampire has made Klein’s life his own, and is using him as a puppet to do his bidding. Because of this, Klein has developed a hatred for vampires (as you do given the circumstances). Well as of the last session we had, Klein was bitten in his sleep and ambushed by a group of six vampires, turning him into a vampire himself. This moment was out of the blue, and caught me completely off guard, but from a story telling perspective, it’s giving me so many ideas of where to go from there. Does he enjoy the new found power he has been cursed with? Does he resent vampires even more? What does he do about this new secret? Does he share it? Or does he hide it? There are so many fun options to explore that I’m at a crossroads. Moral of the story: don’t be afraid to explore your characters through curve balls and twists that you can’t foresee. It’s seriously some of the most fun I’ve had with the game in a while.
That’s All Folks
Well that was a lot of fun. I really do enjoy just kind of talking to my computer screen about anything that pops into my heads. It’s liberating. Thank you so much for coming in, stopping by, and hanging out. I hope my rambling wasn’t too bad this time, and I hope that you enjoyed what I had to talk about. Now if you’ll excuse me, these dragons aren’t going to slay themselves, and Skyrim needs my help.
Until we meet again!