Tomorrowind’s World: Skyrim – Dragonborn Out on PC

By Alec Meer on February 6th, 2013 at 3:00 pm.

Is that Surprised Cthulu?

I’ve totally missed the critical reception to Skyrim add-on Dragonborn, but operating on the no news is good news principle I’ll presume that people aren’t generally wanting to kill it with fire. Or maybe they’re still locked in shocked, appalled silence. I’ll find out very soon, as the PC version of the Morrowind-set, dragon power-boosting DLC is now available.

You can only buy it via Steam [edit - sorry, yes, you can buy a key from a ton of other places of course, I meant it requires a Steam installation, as did Skyrim], which is bad news for people whose parents were eaten by Steam, and it costs a frankly eye-watering £14. In concept there should be a veritable crapton of content, incuding new areas, enemies, shouts, armours and visits to the Daedra, but it’s not like Skyrim’s ever had a problem with a shortage of stuff. It’s what you do with it that counts, missus.

WIT incoming soon, all being well. I think I last left my Skyrim character in the grip of vampirism, so I guess I need to establish how compatible that is what riding dragons or whatever.

£14 really is quite a lot of money, isn’t it?

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60 Comments »

  1. Tuskin38 says:

    This DLC is amazing, its worth the $20 a lot more then Dawnguard was.

    • LennyLeonardo says:

      I would like to add that the DLC is good on the whole, but the dragon riding is atrocious. I’m sure mods will help, though.

  2. abandonhope says:

    Not sure there’s anything that could convince me to go back, not even the chance to leave Skyrim. I’ll assume that everyone else got as bored as I did, including you, so if everyone likes it, including you, maybe I will, too.

    Oh and it’s 20% off on GMG actually.

    • deadly.by.design says:

      Ever since a GMG purchase led to my credit card being flagged as compromised…
      …I’ll pay a few extra bucks to avoid that.

      Alternatively: “Not since the accident.”

      • Wonderboy2402 says:

        I had this happen with a Visa card, trying to get aliens cm. you just have to make a quick call to card rep and they can authorize or decline the charge and unlock the account. I did this for a kickstarter too.

        • SuperNashwanPower says:

          Personally I avoid GMG like the plague after a minor “lying” incident on their behalf which took a week to resolve. They do not have a good reputation, even though PC Gamer has a deal with them.

      • abandonhope says:

        Happened to me too, the one time I used my credit card. I just use PayPal, no issues. Not trying to promote GMG, but they have a lot of utility for me in that they offer discounts on new titles that you can’t usually find elsewhere without crossing over into gray market territory.

  3. Zeewolf says:

    Are you ever going to post about today’s biggest piece of PC-gaming news, or has it been put in the schedule for tomorrow at noon?

  4. mehteh says:

    $20 seems a bit ridiculous in my opinion unless its got enough content to really be 1/3 of the price of the $60 regular game, which I doubt coming from a console focus company

    • All is Well says:

      I’m not saying it’s worth it (since I haven’t played it), but it does take place in Morrowind. I might be seeing things through the foggy lens of nostalgia here, but that setting alone seems like a very strong selling point, even at that price.

      • RobinOttens says:

        Not Morrowind. Solstheim, the island from Morrowind’s Bloodmoon expansion.

        A bit weird, since that expansion was already basically Skyrim Lite ™, containing most of the enemies, snowy tilesets and nordic style that Skyrim had a decade later. And now they’ve switched it around and put a bunch of mushrooms and flying shellfish on Solstheim?

        Anyway, that island is a cool setting in and of itself, but not nearly as big as Morrowind itself.

        • AshEnke says:

          Technically it’s not Morrowind, it’s Vvardenfell !

          • Bluerps says:

            Actually, it’s the other way around. Vvardenfell is the island and Morrowind is the province. So both Solstheim and Vvardenfell are parts of Morrowind (or they were, before Vvardenfell exploded and Morrowind got conquered by the Argonians).

            (I know way too much about Elder Scrolls Lore :/ )

          • RobinOttens says:

            Ugh, yeah I was avoiding calling it Vvardenfell on purpose. Don’t know why, really. But yeah, I know way too much about the Elder Scrolls lore also, so you don’t have to tell me. : )

          • The Greatness says:

            Bluerps beat me to being a keen TES lore nerd. It’s in Morrowind.

        • All is Well says:

          I understand that Solstheim≠Morrowind, but aren’t they pretty similar, apart from the size? What I liked about Morrowind was not so much the size as the almost alien environment and wildlife, and to a lesser extent the architecture of the cities. Those things seem to be present in Dragonborn (judging from screenshots at least), making it sort of a Morrowind Lite™. Or am I misinterpreting everything?

          • RobinOttens says:

            Well, no not really. Solstheim looked and felt very much like Skyrim does these days. Snowy forests and frozen lakes filled with nord towns and tombs, bears, wolves, falmer, ice trolls and mead halls. There was very little ‘Morrowind’ about Solstheim.

            But looking at the trailers and screens, Bethesda seems to have made some of the island look like Vvardenfell did. So I guess you’re right in regards to this new version of Solstheim.

          • Bluerps says:

            Well, the setting has changed a bit since Elder Scrolls 3. I think what happened is that a lot of Dunmer relocated to Solstheim, after Morrowind got conquered. Of course, once they were there, they built settlements that used their style of architecture.

    • Tuskin38 says:

      $20 is reasonable to me. It feels like an Expansion worth addition to the game. around 15-20 hours of content depending your difficulty and how high level you character is when you start it.

    • Dr I am a Doctor says:

      It’s way worse in Europe, where Skyrim costs 30€, but Dragonborn is still 20€.

    • Stevostin says:

      Skyrim is one of the cheapes per hour game even at full price. Beth DLC tends to be way less money for the bucks than vanilla thus. Wonder how much there’s in, and if it’s the good Beth stuff or the placeholder Beth’s stuff.

  5. dozier77 says:

    Haven’t been back to Skyrim in a while, but I have Dawnguard waiting for me and will purchase Dragonborn, also, so I plan to return soon!

  6. asshibbitty says:

    Got me excited for a second, apparently it’s set on Solstheim. I couldn’t get along with it in Morrowind at all, it was like they fired their entire art team and let programmers do the art.

    • The Greatness says:

      Did you watch the trailer? It has Telvanni and Redoran architecture, which is enough of Morrowind for me. That’s a whole bunch of new sets that the artists made, and I think asking them to make the assets of an entire continent including new environments, creatures *and* architecture is asking a bit much.

  7. solidsquid says:

    Might start a new character to play through this, got a bit bored after creating the free destruction magic equipment and getting the ultimate spells

  8. SF Legend says:

    There’s also an unofficial patch release out already. http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/31083
    Mostly compatibility stuff between dragonborn and the main unofficial skyrim patch, though there’s a couple of actual bugs fixed:
    “Dragonborn.esm wiped out the body part changes in Update.esm that shipped with official patch 1.8 that made dragon riding possible. These have been restored. ”
    “Due to a botched INFO form assignment, Dragonborn makes it impossible to dismiss Onmund as a follower.”

  9. Rafnel says:

    Much better than Dawnguard. I got it right when it was released for PC yesterday, big new landmass, although it’s not even close to being as big as skyrim of course. Tons of new dungeons, and some of them are pretty sweet. Bunch of new quests and monsters. Netches are a huge challenge as they travel in families and if you bug them they are much harder than giants and mammoths IMO. Lurkers are pretty sweet and their attacks are very cool looking. reavers have replaced bandits. Another cool new monster is the ash spawn which looks really cool and basically sets stuff on fire with fireballs or fire sword. I’m going to estimate that there is between 15 and 25 hours of content in this new expansion depending on your level and stuff.

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      I liked Dawnguard :(

      But yes, this is certainly better so far. I’m not sure I agree that netches are that bad, but I’m a mage and I created a simple mod that beefs up magic (although it still doesn’t really compare with enchanted equipment, so I’m not sure that should be making the difference). However, you are right, the enemies are noticeably tougher, and they don’t fall into Beth’s usual strategy of “make everything NEARLY INVINCIBLE HAHA LOSERS HOW’S YOUR MINMAXING NOW!?”

      Also, did they improve the combat AI at some point? The Reavers in particular seem to be using offensive and defensive magic much more intelligently than I remember.

      • Rafnel says:

        yeah, I noticed a couple of cool new things. For example, Lydia says a bunch of new stuff and she reacts to really small things and has more dialogue overall. I think that’s great compared to the one or two lines she had for each little event. The monsters overall seem smarter and tougher. Also, the quests seem different. I think they’re more open. You still have some that point to the area you need to go, but for example, someone wanted me to find someone for them (making this broad for no spoilers) and there was no marker. pretty nice touches.

  10. Rao Dao Zao says:

    It can’t be DLC, you can buy it in a box from real shops!

    Sort of tempted purely because it’s a bit Morrowindy and I luff me some Morrowind, but also worried about the risk of them butchering the Morrowind lore… Decisions, decisions.

    • The Greatness says:

      I’m sure there was a word for a thing like this. Expression? Explosion? Something like that.

    • strangeloup says:

      I’ve been trying to avoid spoilers for Dragonborn (can’t believe we had to wait two bloody months to get it on the PC) but there’s been a lot of discussion about the lore, and as far as I can tell, it doesn’t contradict anything in Morrowind, and moreover shows a number of things that have only been hinted at or sparsely described before now.

      Sorry for vague wording, but I’m trying to avoid giving spoilers to others as well!

  11. derella says:

    I originally decided not to buy any of the Skyrim DLC because of Bethesda’s deal with Microsoft. Now, I just don’t care about playing it anymore. I got my 100+ hours out of it, and that’s enough for me.

  12. phelix says:

    Personally I hate how they took a lot of Vvardenfell lore, architecture, monsters etc. and placed them in the one environment they didn’t exist in Ye Olde Bloodmoon.

    • stblr says:

      I haven’t played it yet so I don’t know how accurate this is, but considering Skyrim takes place 200 years after Morrowind and some time after the destruction of Vvardenfell, I’m willing to believe a lot of the mainland dunmer moved over to Solstheim, bringing with them their architecture and some mainland creatures (like netches, which are herded for leather and the like).

      • Drinking with Skeletons says:

        This seems to be the explanation. The impression I got is that the island has never been given enough material and/or military support for anyone besides the native Skaal to really establish a firm foothold. There are lots of abandoned farmsteads and other buildings that do a good job of establishing that this is a kind of no-man’s-land which simply outlasts most people who visit.

      • Werthead says:

        Yup. You get a long lecture from the first dude you meet when you get off the boat who tells you that the dunmer moved there en masse. The High King of Skyrim gave them the island in perpetuity and they resettled it with their own types of settlements. There’s even a silt strider in the game (though you can’t use it for fast travel, unfortunately).

    • The Greatness says:

      I think I would have been more annoyed if they showed some of Morrowind hundreds of years after the events of the game Morrowind and nothing had changed.

  13. Shooop says:

    I’ll wait for some reviews. $20 is enough to buy a full game these days.

  14. Flappybat says:

    Why do we have to wait two months after the Xbox version?

  15. spongthe1st says:

    Pre-ordered it. So psyched for this.

    The only annoying thing is I’m not really ready for it – bought Dawnguard ages ago and still haven’t played it because I’ve been building a house in the Construction Kit for far too long now and I’m not really prepared to play again (other than for brief testing purposes) until it’s done.

  16. Drinking with Skeletons says:

    For those curious about the tone, so far (about 2 hours in) it’s a mix of ominous dread and quirky weirdness, all stitched together with a noticeable apathy towards you. Unlike Shivering Isles, there’s no invitation given or initial trial to progress. You get attacked by some cultists and make your way to Solstheim and then you can progress through the quest or not. Nobody on the island really seems to care about who you are and why you are there, though a few people immediately recognize you as a potential errand boy/girl. If, like me, you aren’t all that familiar with Morrowind’s culture and history, you’ll find that the locals aren’t all that interested in enlightening you, so keep an eye out for books.

    Oh, and at least some of Morrowind’s soundtrack makes a return. I never really got along with Morrowind, but I had forgotten how lovely the music was. If anyone knows how to find and listen to Skyrim’s music through the gamefiles, please let me know!

    • brulleks says:

      Skyrim already used some of the Morrowind soundtrack. Are you sure it’s not just the same tracks as in the original game?

      • Maniac says:

        I can happily confirm that there is more of the goodness of Morrowinds soundtrack with this expansion.
        And god almighty, it is delicious.

    • The Greatness says:

      ‘Quirky weirdness’ is a phrase I’ve been waiting to be used to describe the Elder Scrolls series for a long time.

  17. SuperNashwanPower says:

    The moment I see falmers or a dwemer fucking lever, I am uninstalling. Draugr’s and swinging death-penduli may arouse similar anger too.

    Also yes, £14 is far too expensive. I will be waiting for this to come down to a fiver, however long that takes. Actually quite angry at the pricing of Skyrim DLC. Thats half the cost of the game, but theres no way you get the equivalent of half the playtime or content (150 hours out of this DLC? Nope). Maybe not everyone thinks that way, but one of the main things I buy Bethesda games for is the sheer TIME you can lose in them. In Dawnguard, £14 for 15 hours felt like a rip-off for a Bethesda game. Yes other games are shorter, but those are, you know, other games, not Bethesda ones.

    • Werthead says:

      DRAGONBORN has 7 main quests, 30 side quests, 20 misceallaneous quests, 80 new characters, 70 new locations (including a new plane), 70 new books, 30 new weapons (including the new best one-handed sword in the game) and a metric ton of new monsters, spells and items.

      Doing absolutely everything in the expansion will take about 25 hours. Or probably longer than MASS EFFECT 3 with both DLCs installed (why on my game are clocking in at just over 24 hours).

      Yeah, it’s nowhere near as big as SKYRIM itself, but it’s still absolutely massive and well worth £15, assuming you aren’t bored with the whole ELDER SCROLLS thing.

  18. aliksy says:

    Meh. I had fun with Skyrim, but I think I’ll wait for the big bundle they’ll do sometime next year. By then maybe I’ll be less burned out.

    I also recently reinstalled Morrowind (thank you, Steam sales). It was kind of depressing how much stuff got cut between morrowind and skyrim. Levitate, spell crafting, lots of spell effects, the fun parts of enchanting, attributes. Combat is kind of wonky (abstracted rather than action-y), but I didn’t mind that too much.

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