Thursday, July 5, 2012

To hell, you say?

Up until last night the Dawnguard expansion hadn't offered any new environments. There were a few new places, but they were of the same 'this would have looked really cool a few hundred years ago' ruins design. The vampire's castle fit this description to an absolute t, though I suppose being immortal does tend to reduce the importance of dusting and cleaning up cobwebs. On the second trip there, led by the freshly disgruntled vampire princess, I got a tour of its basement. It was about as exciting as you would expect. More cobwebs. More skeletons. Then, surprise, a gargoyle! I don't remember gargoyles before the expansion, and those jerks hit hard, so I ended up greeting every statue with a shot to the head from my over powered crossbow.

As we moved out of the basement and into the upper reaches of the castle things began to look more lived in. Finally we reached a laboratory, a necromancy laboratory, as if a forgotten lab in a vampire castle's attic wasn't creepy enough. The person we were looking for had opened a gateway to the soul cairn, a suburb of Oblivion where souls used in soul gems are kept. It is also home to the beings that give all necromancers their power, offering them abilities in exchange for more souls.

It's basically hell in the truest sense, and I had to offer up a portion of my strength to get there because I am standing by my no vampirism decision.

I wouldn't call it frightening, but it was certainly uncomfortable. Purple lightning was constantly raining down, sometimes much too close for comfort. Skeletons would ooze up out of the ground with no warning. It was also a very large area, complete with a quest or two that I had no interest in grinding out. You want me to found all ten pages of your manuscript in a giant dark area? At least I know why you were sent here in the first place.

...

Games are once again stacking up behind Skyrim. I still have Tales of Graces F on deck, Sniper Elite V2 just shipped, I have yet to download the third Penny Arcade game, and I am going to loose most of this weekend to the EVO 2012 stream.

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