Wait, That’s It? Skyrim’s First DLC Sort Of Revealed

By Nathan Grayson on May 1st, 2012 at 8:25 pm.

I'm really, really hoping that eye lasers are somehow involved.
I’ve always been a fan of the gag where a TV show or what have you spends ages building to something, only to air an absurdly quick segment and then roll the credits at blink-and-you’ll-miss-them-and-now-my-TV’s-a-time-space-vortex speed. I see what they’re doing there, even when I can’t physically see what they doing there. With Skyrim’s Dawnguard DLC, though, I think Bethesda just created the game announcement equivalent. After weeks of rumor-mongering, hinting, and teasing, the developer announced… an announcement. We now have a name, that dashingly glowy-eyed face, and an assurance that it’s “coming this summer to Xbox 360″ (which means one month after that for everyone else) and we can look forward to “more details at E3.”

So that’s annoying, but – in retrospect – hardly surprising given that E3’s set to envelop Los Angeles in its trademark whirlwind of lights, sounds, and totally-not-booth-babes in a teensy bit more than a month. In the meantime, though, let’s see what we can glean from this. Some have speculated that Dawnguard could refer to the Order of the Mythic Dawn, who sort of assassinated Patrick Stewart in TES IV: Oblivion and kicked off all that nasty, well, Oblivion business. The Daedra-loving apocalyptic mischief-makers sort of took the spotlight during Skyrim’s Mehrunes Razor quest, but this could make the stage a fair bit larger – given that the Cyrodil region is kind of, you know, in Skyrim.

Or maybe I’m way off-base. Maybe the Dawnguard’s a red herring, and the DLC will open with a band of upstanding, barrel-chested knights foretelling of a new Daedric threat, only to instantly be crushed by a giant mudcrab that falls from the sky. Thus begins the Age of the Mudcrab, the darkest period yet in Tamriel’s history. And sadly, there’s no Mudcraborn to give the carapaced menace a taste of its own pinchy medicine, because – as the prophecies say – “that would be really, really silly.”

Regardless, we’ve got a bit of a wait ahead of us. Conveniently, however, we also have the Steam Workshop’s ceaselessly ballooning library on our side. Intimidated? Here, let Craig help get you started. There now: that extra month of waiting doesn’t seem so bad, now does it?

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66 Comments »

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  1. pigchicken says:

    Well it seems they have made many people pretty pissed with the timed release on xbox. But to me Skyrim is more a game of possibilities, I enjoy playing it, but I enjoy far more the idea of playing it, and so a month or two is no time at all really. Especially since we waited four years for Skyrim anyway.

    • povu says:

      People who are pissed now should’ve paid attention. They announced the timed exclusive even before the game itself was released.

    • Pockets says:

      I agree, it gives really strong scope for imagining “what if they did this…” that often lets that down by being pretty conventional.

      Given the way the game built up a ruined state for Morrowind to be in, I thought it would make for a rather good mod to add a really intricately put together city where everything has a focus on character as opposed to “go here, biff those guys” dozens of times in that (Cormar View / Blacklight) area, combined with an out-of-the-city section with more of a combat focus that was almost Stalker inspired.
      I realised it was way beyond my skills and thought “well, maybe it would be a good expansion” – but although they’ve picked the same location, its just going to be more of the same, really, isn’t it ? :(

    • Wreckdum says:

      I got to level 30 and finished the main quest and uninstalled. Saw everything I needed to see. The illusion of a massive open world was quickly ruined by repeating voice work and shoddy quests that all felt too similar. Bethesda is probably one of the most over hyped developers out right now. I think the most over hyped is Bioware. But Bethesda gets way too much credit for releasing buggy games on a terrible engine. It may look semi pretty but it is just a nice shirt on a shambling skeleton. The combat is terrible and clunky. Even as a light armored assassin I felt like a 500 pound dump truck lumbering around. Extremely unimpressed.

      • Resurgam says:

        This.

        I seem to be the only one who can see through the curtain Bethesda seem to have pulled over people’s eyes. There is but an illusion of an open world. In reality it’s pretty small and you can’t go 20 metres in either direction except around Whiterun without hitting an obstacle. The engine is appallingly optimised. The combat is disgustingly bad, clunky, devoid of any sense of immersion. (Once you play Movie Battles II you can’t help but sneer at any other combat system). Oh I just smashed your skull with a 200 lbs Warhammer of Doom? You take 4% damage -_-

        Oh yeah, did I mention the dungeons are all depressingly linear? I never got lost once. The AI is bugged to hell and gets stuck on tables. Difficulty settings only increase NPC health/decrease yours making it frustrating rather than more difficult. It’s too easy to get filthy rich. I had 5k spare gold after killing the first dragon. Dialogue…. it’s OK but same ‘ol stuff. Go here, kill dudes till you become the most powerful dude in the land. Yeah you can go the opposite direction to what the quest tells you to but there is no reward for such tomfoolery. Only consequence is you get even richer, crush more skulls and have nothing to spend your money it on.

        It’s all too contrived and linear and… terrible. Waste of 35 good pounds if you ask me.

        • H77 says:

          I seem to be the only one who can see through the curtain Bethesda seem to have pulled over people’s eyes. There is but an illusion of an open world.

          Of course it is, it’s a fucking G-A-M-E. You want a true open world? Turn off your PC and go out.

          ps. Actually, if I wanted to be pedantic I could point out that even in the real world there are borders and rules or laws of all kinds (natural, societal, legal, etc). So, even that would be restricted and repetitive. You wouldn’t get complete strangers telling you something deeply personal or secret and then asking you to go somewhere dangerous to fetch them something, but you would go through the same daily routines of waking up always at the same hour, piss, shit, shower, dress, coffee, leave for work, etc., to be able to fulfill the monthly routine of paying bills… and so on.

          • FunkyBadger3 says:

            Totaly unrealistic – same superdry reskinned coats on anyone, same shitty Ford Mondeo reskins for cars. Totally unbelievable.

        • cassus says:

          You guys must have played a different game than what I played… I played about 140 hours when it was released, and I saw A LOT of stuff. Just.. Lots. And when listening to stuff like the bombcast (giantbomb’s podcast) what blew me away was that they kept talking about stuff that I’d NEVER seen. Not only that, I’ve not done quests in the majority of the cities… I get why you’d feel what you feel if you just went straight for the main questline. It’s short, and pretty dull, but that’s not what the game is really about. Just noodling about in the world, that’s what really makes the game special. I guess the gameplay kinda caters more to certain gamers than others. 80% of my 140 hours were spent just doing side stuff, like the wizards college quest chain, and the Dark Brotherhood quests (So good.. so damn good) and also the stormcloak chain, which I feel added a LOT to the game, kind of like a conquest campaign.

          Not trying to make your opinion invalid or something, but you may just be playing it wrong. The same way I don’t really understand what the cheering about the mass effect games is all about cause I play it like a shooter (and a crappy one at that.)

        • TheCheese33 says:

          “I seem to be the only one who can see through the curtain Bethesda seem to have pulled over people’s eyes.”
          The only one? Oh, how special you must feel!

          Don’t flatter yourself. There’s nothing you’ve seen that the rest of us haven’t.

        • Premium User Badge

          oceanclub says:

          “I seem to be the only one who can see through the curtain Bethesda seem to have pulled over people’s eyes.”

          Obligatory reference to XVCD inserted:

          http://xkcd.com/610/

          P.

      • Eddy9000 says:

        It is a massive and detailed world, that you do the same thing in over and over and over again. Would have been better a little bit smaller and a bit more varied. Keep trying to think why I didn’t get this feeling with Morrowind, I mean that was basically doing the same thing over again as well. I reckon it’s becasue it’s just a smaller game funnily.

        • cassus says:

          I actually had the inverse experience. Coming from Morrowind to Oblivion left me extremely unsatisfied. I got a real sense of “so… this is it? Really?” and the whole “YOU CAN KILL EVERYTHING AT LEVEL 1 WOOHOO” thing they had with the scaling difficulty just ruined it for me back then. I found skyrim to be absolutely amazing. There are tons of cities and lots of stuff to do.

          I get that people think it’s the same over and over, but that’s what games are. You can say that about ALL games. Hardcore flight sims “well you take to the skies, then kill stuff…” CoD type shooters “you are guided through an alley where you shoot stuff.” Mario “you walk about and jump on stuff..” Zelda “dungeons then some loot and..stuff..” racing games “road, cars, you get the “drift” ” etc etc etc. All open world games are what you make of them. GTA games are just games where you drive a car, get out then beat someone… Or, it’s a game where you try to get your car on a roof, then jump off the roof landing on a hooker. Kind of have to make your own game :)

          I went out hunting a lot in Skyrim. Bow and arrow in hand, at night. Come back in the morning with a backpack full of pelts, make myself some new armor. Good times :)

  2. Brun says:

    They were going to give us more details about the DLC, but then they took an arrow to the knee.

  3. Premium User Badge

    mrwonko says:

    So what benefit is there in a timed exclusive for the XBox? Money from Microsoft? Less piracy? I don’t see any benefit for gamers, anyway.

    Up there with “delayed for some days outside of the US”?

    • Brun says:

      The benefit to Bethesda is that Microsoft doesn’t make life difficult for them in getting the game (and future games) approved for Xbox release, etc.

      • The Malkavian Bear says:

        I bet they still pay them a shed load of cash as well.

        • Brun says:

          Perhaps. It could also be written into the contract or agreement they doubtlessly signed when Skyrim was approved for release, making DLC exclusivity a condition for approval. That said, I think that if Bethesda had the balls for it, they could certainly have called Microsoft’s bluff – there’s no way they would have risked locking themselves out of one of the most popular games of 2011.

          • The Malkavian Bear says:

            True, but i don’t think even Microsoft would be so cocksure to risk losing Skyrim……but then again, i would never put ANYTHING past Microsoft.

          • Zelius says:

            I doubt this has anything to do with 360 release approval. I’m betting my left nut that there was a significant amount of money involved from the get-go.

        • FunkyBadger3 says:

          Remember children, money is wrong.

  4. Mr. Mister says:

    So glad that Skyrim DLCs will follow the path of Fallout 3 and New Vegas’ DLCs. Don’t dare you do the same as Oblivion.
    (This doesn’t mean I approve of anything called DLC instead of Patch though. Titan Patch!!!!!!)

  5. db1331 says:

    This is just the teaser for the teaser. Once the teaser for the teaser post on their Facebook page gets 500k Likes, they will show the actual teaser for the teaser trailer they made.

    • Fwiffo says:

      Oh not again. I’m sick of these ‘let’s get the public to do the legwork for us’ marketing strategies and announcements of teasers of announcements of sneak peeks of glimpses of announcements of trailers of announcements.

  6. The Random One says:

    It’ll just be a helmet for your horse, mark my words.

    • lordfrikk says:

      Invisible Helmets the DLC: now you can hide your helmet and wear it too! Boom.

  7. dogsolitude_uk says:

    Just been on Bethblog, and I was rather surprised by the gnashing and wailing of teeth over this.

    I think though that getting it out on Xbox a month early could be a good thing: the Xbox user base represents thousands of unpaid QA testers all with a consistent hardware profile. Any quest glitches will hopefully be fixed by the time it winds up on PC…

    Hopefully. :)

    • Jupiah says:

      Wow, that never occurred to me before. I guess it would be much easier to find bugs on the xbox version than on the pc where potentially every customer could have a different hardware and operating system setup.

    • Tyraa Rane says:

      I wish. Precedent says…not so much, however. The 1.2 patch came out on XBox and PS3 before the PC. It was confirmed to be full of issues like, oh, backwards flying dragons. Was that fixed when 1.2 came out on the PC? Of course not! That would just be silly and useful!

      …Although it is worth noting that, after that disaster, Bethesda switched things around and started doing actual public beta testing for the patches on the PC, instead (then doing a final patch release for PC and then on the console). Which was appreciated, at least on the PC side. Still, I remain cynically doubtful about how many bug fixes the DLC will see when the PC version comes out.

  8. Fwiffo says:

    Hmm, since ‘summer’ could mean ‘up to August 31st’ – and knowing Bethesda it probably will be – plus the delay of at least a month thanks to the exclusivity deal it’s possible we won’t see this till October.

    I hope it’s more Morrowind expansion rather than Fallout DLC in size.

    • povu says:

      It’s been 5 months since Skyrim’s release, and we’re getting the first mention of DLC now. 5 months after FO3’s release they had 2 DLCs out already.

      It has to be significantly larger than any individual FO3 DLC.

      • Dragatus says:

        I like the sound of that. And it makes sense too.

        • lordfrikk says:

          Look at the silly post above – applying logic to Bethesda’s development process!

  9. Roshin says:

    I have 151 hours in Skyrim so far and I have barely touched the main quest yet.

    I can wait for the DLC.

  10. elnalter says:

    mod content > dlc

  11. db1331 says:

    The DLC is actually just an eyeball pack. For $14.99 you can choose between 8 new colors, including glowing ones.

  12. Freud says:

    I think my character was too powerful at the end for it to be worth it to go back and play an expansion/DLC. It’s hard seeing them able to create a challenge for me and I’m not too into the lore to play it for that reason.

    • Dragatus says:

      Why not start a new character?

      • S Jay says:

        I did that, then I realized: god, this will suck my whole life again, I should quit. Then I did.

  13. DickSocrates says:

    Anyone really that inerested in DLC for this game? How many of you even completed the main quest? I got bored of the world and the terrible animation and the terrible combat after 40 hours. I suddenly realised I didn’t ever want to go back into that place, and manage the carrots and potatoes I had in my chest. DLC that’s more of the same game I didn’t even get 10% through because it outstayed its welcome?

    I’m sure there are some people out there that can’t wait for yet more of the same. I’m just really glad I’m not one of them.

    • Pockets says:

      I’d be very interested if I was really, truly convinced they’d be able to focus down on one area and make it much less game-y and breathe more life into what is an incredibly well formed but rather static world. However, as you say – bigger chance of it being more of the same. So a “wait and see” approach for me, definitely.

    • Malk_Content says:

      I finished the main story! Then I stopped playing because the ending of that so summed up the rest of the game for me. Not going to drop any spoilers from a story point of view but for the last boss fight game play wise all you have to do is press one button then sit there, maybe press it again and it seemed to me that it didn’t matter that I was there at all, just like with the rest of the games events.

  14. Premium User Badge

    RedViv says:

    Let’s see where exactly “between Point Lookout and Shivering Isles” this really stands then, shall we.

  15. psyk says:

    Come on guys they don’t have the creation kit, we do. Is anyone on pc still playing with an unmodded skyrim?

    Can we get some more skyrim mod features? please XD

  16. frightlever says:

    I just… more Skyrim? I… uninstalled it this weekend. Maybe look at it again in a couple of years but 200+ hours is enough for now – and I still had about twenty quests open in my log and a bunch of unexplored dungeons.

  17. moyogo says:

    You play as Dawn, Don’s secretary.
    Your mission: protecting Don’s booze from Roger.

  18. Novotny says:

    If the author is not Irish I will , I don’t know, do something I don’t wont to do.

  19. caddyB says:

    Give us another expansion type of thing like Shivering Isles please

  20. food says:

    Hunting vampires during the Long Night? Sign me up.

    If the expansion pack is anything other than either Stendarr or Meridia’s followers owning the undead during Skyrim’s winter, I’ll be shocked. Now all I need is an offhand crossbow pistol and I’m set.

  21. Highstorm says:

    Could it have anything to do with Meridia? She grants you the blade called Dawnbreaker when you become her champion after all.

  22. Avish says:

    You got a typo: It’s not Cyrodil, It’s Cyrodiiiil.

    Please fix. It’s confusing.

  23. alexwadd89 says:

    I am 100% okay with it coming out for 360 before PC. That gives them a month to check any glitches and give enough time for a better version for PC!

  24. Premium User Badge

    tumbleworld says:

    Given the dreadful major quest lines, I’m expecting Point Pleasant with Snow Elves.

  25. AlchemisterJones says:

    First and foremost, I am a 28 year-old gamer, and this is my first post. To all those complaining about lag in time between the xbox and pc releases, Bite Me. Sure, it will take them longer to program a conversion to xbox from the pc version of this mod, but that’s because we have to make it rey-tard proof for all you guys out there who claim to be RPGer’s but have never attended a g3 or comicon convention, Never played drinking games with the microsoft girls. Never actually seen the insides of an electronic device, And, don’t understand the difference between MLAA and FXAA. No, These are not presets on your Stupid Box. 4.feely. Or whatever. And yes, I am a massage student who gets more extracurricular activities than you do, so pay attention. A computer, like a brain, needs sex to the face. It takes longer to make sex to the face on a console than it does to a PC. Why? Cause a pc kinda, well, has had a little. Been there. Done That. So while your xbox 360 or whatever is over there muchin’ along at the “feed-me train”, I’ll be over here with my ram and my coolant chilled copper card and my 42″ hdmi monitor, and I’ll be thinking…..Yeah. I remember when I didn’t know shit about gaming.

  26. AlchemisterJones says:

    Sorry. Just tired of console kids complaining about release dates for add ons.

  27. thebigJ_A says:

    It’s about Meridia. Dawnbringer (the coolest sword in the game) glowed exactly the same way as his eyes do in the image.

    While that means it could be as awesome and large as Shivering Isles, it’s also going to be about zombies. Meridia hates undead. Boy, we haven’t seen zombies before!

  28. Burning Man says:

    Monty Python Skyrim DLC sounds good to me.

    Chapman’s ghost can just stop us when it gets too silly.

  29. terry says:

    I’m excited for the DLC if only because it’ll hopefully open the door to more conflict. My Skyrim is sort of quiet now that Ulfric Stormcloak’s lying face down in a cake with cheese wheels piled on top of him. I’d like to see the Vigilant of Stendaar be fleshed out a bit, or maybe some new world interactions too. What I don’t want is a whole new playpen outside of the game world, where I inexplicably can’t take my 500 malicious arrows of frothing spite.