Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Fun with dead bodies in Skyrim!

One of the most macabre methods of making your own fun in Skyrim is finding creative ways of displaying the bodies of your fallen enemies. Here are a couple of examples. Be warned: there may be some minor spoilers ahead!

As Keldor the Unbroken, I was all too happy to off the shrill lunatic Cicero when the opportunity presented itself. In the bowels of the Dark Brotherhood's long-abandoned sanctuary near Dawnstar, there was one obvious choice of storage for his body.

Rest in peace, ya loony!

Obsessive Mythic Dawn historian Silus Vesuius got what was coming to him after I looted his entire museum behind his back. It seemed like a fun idea to store him inside one of his own display cases. This was made far more amusing due to a basket that somehow attached itself to his foot.

Then, just for kicks, I closed the door. Things started going crazy, as he doubled up inside the basket, his limbs flopping around like a freshly-caught fish!

Naturally, I had to take a look at him with the door open again, and he was now in this state:

My nephew Braxton's surly Argonian  murdered the smarmy merchant Belethor-- or Ballathor, as we call him-- earlier today, and managed to store his corpse on top of the large moose's head in his shop, cradled by the antlers. (For some reason, I could not get a decent pic of this one no matter what!)


Sunday, December 25, 2011

The Santahkiin!

A little drawing I whipped up. The dragon looks pretty lousy; this showed me just how out of practice I am at drawing monsters.
As a nice little easter egg, the dragon isn't speaking gibberish. Head to Google and find a dragon language translator to see what he's saying! ;)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Xmas narrowly salvaged!

When my girlfriend Cindy came to my house to get the last of her presents earlier today, disaster had struck struck!

Inside the chest which was supposed to contain her second ring was this note!

It reads: "I suppose you were expecting to find a ring here. Unfortunately for you, the infamous Kleptothiar struck first! Accept my apologies, and take solace in the knowledge that the proceeds from the sale of your shiny bauble will be put to good use. Yours, M. Kleptothiar"
The dastard!
Cindy had no choice but to follow her destination marker.

Arriving at her goal...

...our adventurer came upon a most gruesome sight!

This letter was found near the unlucky thief's body:

It reads: This is a communication from the Daedric prince Blingathor. Your lust for bright and shiny objects pleases me, so I have struck down the petty thief who snatched your ring, and sealed his soul forever into an immobile plastic form. Your jewelry may be recovered in the chest from which it was stolen. Wear it well, and rejoice that you have had the great fortune to gain the benevolent notice of one of the immortal Daedra."
Hurrah, the day was saved!

Claiming her ring at last, Cindy had a glorious day! I hope all of you have had as exciting and wonderful a day as we have!

(Hopefully she won't find out that the thief and I were guildmates...)

Monday, December 19, 2011

This is what happens...

... when you try to fuck with Keldor the Unbroken.
As Keldor, the sinister Dark Elf battlemage, I was exploring the countryside, gradually making my way to Markarth for a Dark Brotherhood mission. After killing some Thalmor scumbags, I went poking around in the menu and noticed that I had picked up a small bounty somewhere along the way. Naturally, the next small settlement I came across had a guard posted, and he immediately came running toward me. The fine was small enough that I figured I'd just pay it, so I went into my inventory before the guard reached me so I could drop all the stolen items I had on me. (Stolen items are confiscated when you pay a bounty off or go to jail. How a pissant guard can recognize something you stole on the other side of the continent is beyond me, but there it is.)

So, I pay my fine to this jackass, and then remember that I have to go to the nearest city with him. The game loads, and I'm in the middle of Markarth! I quickly run back to where I dropped all my stolen items, and begin picking them back up. Oddly, a ring of them was suspended in the air, and would drop to the ground as I walked into them. A few items never did drop, so I suppose they're still hanging there. I should go back and check on that.

I decide that, for inconveniencing me so greatly, this asswipe guard needs to die. So, I walk over to the mine entrance he is guarding. Some douchenozzle in a puffy white shirt starts talking to me, but I ignore him and go stand by the guard. I figure Nozzle has to go into the house at some point, and I'll be able to take care of the guard without any witnesses to deal with.

Several in-game hours pass, and Nozzle is still hanging around. I go talk to him, and realize he is involved in a quest focusing on that mine, so he's probably not going anywhere. "Fuck it," I said eloquently to myself," I'll kill him too." The guard dies quickly with the one-two punch of a fireball and my sword in his face, and then I turn to chase down Nozzle. I lob some flames at Nozzle, and his knees buckle as I swing my sword. This leads to one of the most badass finshing move animations I've seen in the game; I plunged my sword through his chest as he bent over backwards, and basically pinned him to the ground like a prized butterfly.

I figure Nozzle's part is done, but I'm still not finished with that asswipe guard. I take everything he has, including his uniform and his douchey helmet. (It was at this point I got the idea to document this with photos; since I don't have the game on PC, I can't do hi-res screencaps, so my rather crappy photos will have to suffice.)

I drag him to the top of the rocks nearby...

Drop him off the cliff...

And I lob some fireballs after him for good measure.

Just a fun little diversion in my Skyrim day!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The (Skyrim) story so far...

I had the idea a few weeks ago that I might keep some kind of running commentary on my experiences playing Bethesda's latest sprawling monster of a video game epic, Skyrim. One problem: I've been way too busy playing the hell out of Skyrim to do it. Perhaps writing a brief overview will galvanize me to make this a regular thing, as I had originally intended.

I had to wait nearly two weeks after the game's release to play it. I received it on December 1 as an early Xmas gift from my wonderful girlfriend. Suddenly, all the time she spends doing various things online for her church seemed like a blessing, as it enabled me to keep playing Skyrim when she is over at my house. She witnessed the creation of my first character, Valkara the Reaver, a gigantic Nord woman with flaming red hair, piercing blue eyes, and a bevvy of scars that serve as reminders of all the battles she's experienced prior to her experiences in Skyrim.
(Readers of some of my stories will probably remember the name; this character is indeed based on the character of the same name who appears in them.)

The character creation is much better than in earlier games in the series, although the customization options are still not up to the level as games such as the WWE series; for example, you cannot adjust your character's height. Still, with the sliders for facial features, and adjusting the character's physique, you could make a very realistic version of yourself, if you were so inclined. Personally, I often play as a female character in these games simply for change of pace, as the majority of video games have you playing the role of a big hairy guy. It's nice to be able to go the other direction sometimes.

Thankfully, I haven't experienced many of the bugs and glitches that have plagued some people. I'm playing on the Xbox 360, and have not installed a single patch for the game, so I'm not bothered by the issues introduced by some of them. Aside from a few graphical glitches-- such as the horse whose front half was embedded in the ground-- the only problems I've experienced are weapons plaques in one of my houses that will not work, and once the door to the cistern in the headquarters of the Thieves' Guild would not open. In that case, thankfully, I had literally just saved my game, so I just reloaded the save, and it worked fine from that point on.

I currently have two characters, as I made a second one a few days ago. I am by no means done with my original character, but I usually like to have two characters in these games with focuses on different skill sets, and therefore, different play styles. I alternate between them depending on my mood. Whereas Valkara is a virtuous hero, an unstoppable beast in combat, and knows only a few essential spells, Keldor the Unbroken is a sinister Dark Elf who relishes the kind of action he gets in the Dark Brotherhood, and is more of a battlemage. He roams the land with a spell ready in each hand, and a nasty sword at hand just in case he needs it. It is testament to the depth of the game that each of these characters offers a very different experience in playing it.

So, those are some quick thoughts about my experiences in Skyrim so far. Now, I'm off to make some more!