Thursday, October 11, 2012

Playing Skyrim as an Illusionist

A nine part and growing journal by Tom Francis about playing Skyrim in an unorthodox manner:
In Skyrim, a mage is an unstoppable storm of destruction. In real life, a mage is just an illusionist: they can’t do much except trick you. If one of them turned out to be the world’s only hope of salvation, hijinks and sudden death would inevitably ensue. Since these are my two favourite things, I’ve decided to try playing this way.
Here's a  taste:
There’s just one more mountain range between me and Solitude now. I skid down its far side, cross a river, and see someone running towards me from the distance. I should run away, but I wait – I don’t see a weapon, and it’s unusual for an enemy to head right for you before you even get close.

Soon I can tell it’s a woman, and that she’s unarmed. When she reaches me, she explains that she’s just escaped capture by bandits. She tells me I’d be a hero if I took them out. I bet! Well, see you.

I was hoping she’d ask me to escort her to the nearest town, because then she would effectively be escorting me to the nearest town, and the nearest town is now Solitude. But she just runs off.

I do the same, and run straight into the path of a bear.

Bears are nasty. I’m way, way off the beaten path the game expects you to take at this point, and a bear could munch a level 1 character like me in seconds. They’re fast, too, but of course I don’t need to outrun the bear. I need to outrun the weak, defenceless woman I just refused to help.

I pass her without a word, and glance back to see the lunk gaining on us. But is she actually going to fight it? If she keeps running, it might go straight past her and head for me. I have one way of making sure that doesn’t happen, and it’s not… it’s not the gentlemanly option. I turn back again, just long enough to aim a Fury spell at her.

When I next look back, she’s dead. The bear sits by her body, licking a paw.

Well, now I feel good.
*Buy Skyrim at Amazon.