Skyrim Combat Details, Uh, Detailed


There’s a huge article on the combat system Bethesda have proposed for Skyrim over at Game Informer. The biggest changes seem to be that the animation system is now combined with PHYSICS so there’s possibilities for knocking people off balance and then taking advantage of that, but also that blocking is timed, so that a shield doesn’t behave as a permanent barrier to hide behind. There’s a whole bunch of stuff about magic and other abilities, too, but I think the most interesting ranged-combat change is that to bows, as they will now take longer to string arrows on and ultimately have a bigger damage payoff – which is something I’ve often thought should be reflected in fantasy MMOs. Putting a couple of arrows in someone should probably end them. Anyway, go read the big blathering for further insights. Skyrim is sounding more and more interesting!

95 Comments

  1. DevilSShadoW says:

    Never played any elder scrolls games before but this one is shaping up to be one that i might be tempted to try.

  2. MacBeth says:

    *awaits Photoshop mission briefing*

  3. Njordsk says:

    Every new detail coming up keeps getting me interested. That sound really good.

    Dark messiah had some pretty viceral hand to hand combat, I’d like something approching

    • Colthor says:

      Yeah, the combat in Dark Messiah was spot on. Hopefully that Zenimax bought Arkane isn’t just a coincidence.

    • Ian says:

      I’d be happy with it being like Dark Messiah if it’s not so centred around hoofing people into handily-placed sharp things.

      As 1Up called it, “The Adventures of Sir Kicksalot Deathboot in the Land of the Conspicuously Placed Spike Racks”

    • Colthor says:

      You say that as if it were a bad thing.
      Besides, you could also kick people off ledges, and down stairs, and into fires. And you could fireball people into conspicuous spikes, off ledges, down stairs and into fires. And you could get them to slide on ice into/off/down all of the above!

      And you could even clobber them with a sword, if you wanted.

    • Ian says:

      @ Colthor: Oh there was plenty of possible variety and I tried to use it as much as possible, but there were still far too many spike racks. As a naturally cautious quicksaver-type Dark Messiah was a game I forced myself to just play out and go with whatever happened because the combat and physics made it such a pleasure. Most of the areas in the game had fairly obviously contrived traps to be honest, but they were still a hoot if you used them on the fly or as part of a pre-planned murder-spree.

      One of my favourite gaming moments was in Dark Messiah. I was being chased by an orc when came out of the tunnels we were in and I crossed a footbridge. I had an “I wonder….” moment and slashed at a supporting rope and diving for the far side, seeing the the bridge fall away beneath me. I felt totally awesome until I turned around to inspect my handiwork and got an arrow in the face. The orc had stopped to draw his bow as soon as I was out in the open. :D

    • TeeJay says:

      My favourite memories of Dark Messiah were trying to climb into ridiculous places using rope arrows.

    • Navagon says:

      @ Ian

      Spike racks were fashionable back then. You’ve got to keep up with the trends, man.

  4. EthZee says:

    PHYSICS!

    In a baby’s laugh, in the glint of a kitten’s eye.

    And now it can be found in the heavy, rusty warhammer being swung forcefully, spike-end first, into the forehead of an angry city guard. Hurrah!

  5. Oozo says:

    Sounds a bit like what was achieved in “Demon’s Souls”. Here’s free advice to all developers: That game did it right. Go see and learn.

    • zergrush says:

      The world needs more games like Demon’s Souls.

    • groovychainsaw says:

      I agree, probably the greatest hand to hand fighting system I’ve ever played. It IS bastard hard at times though, so they’d have to tone something down for the mass market they will be aiming for with skyrim i suspect. Plus it would mean you could actually kill someone with one blow in a realistic manner, and I think they’re too attached with battering someone 50 times with a warhammer now to change.

    • DeathHamsterDude says:

      Bu . . . bu . . . but this is a PC site! Get that PS3 game out of here!

      Actually, I remember reading up about that, and thought it looked really interesting, but no PS3, so . . .

      Liked that thing about other players being able to scrawl messages on the floor and walls for you to see, warning you of traps, monsters etc.

    • James G says:

      Playing Demon’s Souls at the moment (I’m sure that apostrophe is in one place. Isn’t it about the souls of multiple demons, not a single demon who has built up a collection?) I’ve just started, and still haven’t managed my first resurrection. Switched classes to Royalty on being told it was a good beginner class, though not fond of the rapier, its piercing attacks make it very difficult to deal with multiple foes.

      Combat does work well though, even if I’m not very good at it. Is remarkably fair, and ensures that defence is just as important as offence. My sucking is largely due to me having crap reactions though, and by the time I’ve responded to even a fairly slow attack, I’ve been hit, or grossly mistime my response. The less a game relies on reactions and hand eye co-ordination the better for me.

    • zergrush says:

      If you’re keen on meleeing you should get a temple knight, the TK’s starting stats are enough to wield pretty much any weapon, and from there you can get a feel of whatever you want to do with your character. I recommend making a female character if you do get a TK, because it’s easier for a beggining character to get the optimal female armor ( the Blinded Set ) than to get the male one.

      Royalty is great for magic or hybrid magic builds, and those are good for beginners because you can kill most enemies doing pretty high damage from a safe distance.

    • groovychainsaw says:

      Knight Templar is the one I ended up with after getting destroyed immediately as the barbarian :-). Tough armour, big weapons and a heal spell. The ability to stand behind a tower shield and laugh (at the weedy starting opponents, at least). I love how if you start swinging big weapons (halberds etc.) in small corridors it catches on the walls and you die. If you use a spear in a narrow corridor you are very difficult to hit without you stabbing the other person first. THAT is how you do physics in a medieval game (even though demons souls does fudge it a bit), make it real and tactical, make you think about whether your weapon is suitable for the fight you are approaching.

      And yes, i know this isn’t a PC game. But it is probably my favourite game of the last few years, so I evangelise given any opportunity.

    • zergrush says:

      Amen to that, brother.

      More developers need to make action-oriented games with deeper combat mechanics, similar to fighting games. See Monster Hunter, Demon’s Souls or Blade of Darkness as examples.

  6. Hoaxfish says:

    When is this coming out again? I got the impression it was still early days, which’d make it odd for them to be talking about it so much.

    • Kaira- says:

      11/11/11 is the estimated release date, but knowing the industry it could be anytime in the next 2000 years.

    • Henk says:

      It seems really strange that they boast there are 85 spells to choose from, considering oblivion had more than 300 spells…

      EDIT: That wasn’t supposed to be a reply to anything.

    • Hoaxfish says:

      same thing goes for play-hours…

      People go on about how Baldur’s Gate took X amount of hours to complete, but OMG Dragon Age is an Awesome Y hours long! (where Y is much much less than X).

      Then when people get called on those numbers they fall back on “oh, but in olden times the available resources simply couldn’t be spent on graphics so we spent them on actual play-options and story-time”

    • DeathHamsterDude says:

      @Henk; while Oblivion may have had 300 spells, quite a few were pretty useless. Also, while there may be only 85 different spells in Skyrim, each spell can be used in many different ways; projectile, rune, aoe, template, ward, etc. Plus, equipping the same spell in both hands vastly increases it’s power. So I think the combinations will more than make up for it.

    • Mad Hamish says:

      When you have 300 spells it’s very hard to balance them and make them all useful. You’re never even going to use a fraction of that and most become redundant very quickly as you level up.
      Elder scrolls definitly needs a more focused magic system. The magic system has always been kinda boring. It just feels like you’re throwing projectiles or activating inventory icons instead of casting magic. It’s all just different coloured particles.

    • Voidy says:

      >It seems really strange that they boast there are 85 spells to choose from, considering oblivion had more >than 300 spells…

      They must mean 85 spell effects. Oblivion’s 300+ spells were approximately 50 spell effects multiplied by the number of various stats combinations (spell power, range etc).

    • cjlr says:

      Oblivion had a bunch of spells, but they were all silly levelled variations of the same effects. It’s much cleaner to have a [f’r’ex] single feather spell, whose power is dependent on the releveant magical skill (and perhaps a adjustable and preconfigured balance between magnitude and duration, though that might be too much for console players) than to have six fixed versions of same. Here’s hoping…

    • Fiatil says:

      I’m all down for the console bashing (looking at you oblivion and fallout 3 interface), but Oblivion and Morrowind had lots of spell sliders to mess around with, both of which were also on consoles.

  7. rei says:

    Just about everything they say about Skyrim makes it seem like they actually understand where Oblivion (and Morrowind, let’s face it) fell short, so I’m really looking forward to this (I would be anyway as they’re some of my favorite games, but I’ve still been very positively surprised).

    • DarkFenix says:

      Indeed, whether it will be any good in implementation remains to be seen, but from what I’ve heard they’ve learned a lot at a fundamental conceptual level.

    • SuperNashwan says:

      Hopefully a fair amount of it came from looking at the popular mods (y’know, aside from the naked lady ones…), creating a toolkit must be a lot of work but it gives back a lot to the devs as well as the fans. Just look at how Blizzard have changed WoW over the years in response to popular addons, where near essential ones like PowerAuras have been wholesale incorporated into the game, albeit slightly simplified.

  8. mpk says:

    To be honest, if I want to know what it’s really like to be in a melee fight I’ll visit Baird’s Bar wearing a Rangers top. I wish developers would stop adding reality into their fantasy games. I don’t particularly want Sim Dragonborn – I stopped playing p’n’p D&D years ago because I couldn’t be arsed worrying about managing my inventory, and switched to games that were about the roleplay, not the rules. I’m all for a more immersive experience, just don’t take it too far.

    • Setroc says:

      Well then you are in luck, as I can personally guarantee that clicking away on your mouse and keyboard will bear little resemblance to actual combat with deadly melee weaponary. But in all seriousness the complaint here is not that TES’s melee combat system was not realistic enough, but that it wasn’t interesting enough. I have tried being a fighter in the last 3 TES games, and each time combat has been boring and repetitive right up to the point where I give up on it and return to magical abilities.

      Obviously given the choice between more realism and better gameplay the average person is going to go for better gameplay, but that doesn’t mean that the two concepts are mutually exclusive, and as far as I’m concerned any changes to the combat system can only be a positive thing.

    • Premium User Badge

      Joshua says:

      Looking at the complexities of reality often creates better gameplay all by itself…

  9. DSR says:

    STOP RIGHT THERE, CRIMINAL SCUM!
    Nobody breaks the laws of physics on MY watch!

  10. oceanclub says:

    “It seems really strange that they boast there are 85 spells to choose from, considering oblivion had more than 300 spells”

    Actually, that’s one thing I wouldn’t mind changing; I’d rather have the ability to upgrade spells to be more powerful rather than multiple variations on the same spell. In vanilla Oblivion, you could end up with any number of fireball spells in your list (there was a mod which allowed you to delete spells).

    (Having said that, I hope you still get the chance to create your own spells, including tweaking the power/durations.)

    P.

  11. DeathHamsterDude says:

    I’m liking the look of this more and more as time goes on. I think that melee in first-person games has been really lacking that visceral crunch. I suppose it’s because there’s very few first-person melee games out there. Personally, I would LOOOOVE a counter-strike-alike with swords, armour, bows, and magic with a similiar style to what Skyrim seems to be doing. I honestly don’t know why this hasn’t been done properly before. Age Of Chivalry was pretty cool, but was limited by the fact that it was a source mod, and not a more up-to-date standalone. I think a fantasy FP(not S. M for melee? CC for close-combat? FPCC?) on the source 2 engine would be super sexy. With some RPG-like unlocks. Mmm.
    Skyrim; Yeah. Loving the new magic system. I know I’m going all out spellslinger with a little bastard sword anyway. Hope the magic system lives up to the hype. That was something that was really lacking in Oblivion. Magic was so boring. Plus, I couldn’t help myself from creating 3 spells that made the game a little too easy; one that added 300% (I think, or was 100% the top?) vulnerability to lightning damage for 3 seconds, one that did ridiculous amounts of lightning damage for 2 seconds, and one massive lightning AOE spell. In droves they died! Droves!

    • KillahMate says:

      You might want to check out Zeno Clash.

    • DeathHamsterDude says:

      I did. Got it when it came out. What a weird and wonderful beat-em-up. I loved the style and concept of the game. Father-Mother was just awesome. So very very odd. I think the game didn’t quite live up to the concept though, but it was still very good. I’d love to see a game like this based in China Mieville’s New Crobuzon/Bas-Lag world. There aren’t enough weird steam-punk games around. They’re chock full of exciting imagery, and there’s such room for maneuvering in regards to plot and gameplay.

    • Reapy says:

      You might want to try mount & blade warband. This has the most satisfying melee combat I’ve found in an online game. It might seem shallow at first until you learn to play better, but when everything starts to click there really is an interesting game to be played there. I think the game could use more refinement, and really deep down wish a developer with millions to invest would make a game like this, but for now, warband seems to be where its at for melee online fighting.

    • Mad Hamish says:

      Warband for sure has the best melee comabt system I’ve played. The original was good enough but the tweaks in warband, like being able to knock way an attack really add depth. It’s simple enough rules but it amounts to some really intense fights.
      I really hope that Bethesda were playing M&B. I’d love to see some of the stuff they’ve implemented inspire the Skyrim system.

    • dethtoll says:

      I’d suggest Condemned 2: Bloodshot but 360-only games are shunned here and the story is godawful anyway. But for first-person manpunching it’s pretty good.

  12. vanarbulax says:

    New more powerful, fewer arrows sounds good. I spent most of my time in Oblivion as a kleptomaniac who used a bow when he possibly could, and trust me many things did grate. While it all sounds good I obviously want to see it in action, words only mean so much.

    For instance it would go without saying that you wouldn’t put the sneak icon INFRONT of your crosshair, or that you shouldn’t both have arrows being piss-weak and taking up a significant amount of weight once you need to carry around the necessary 100 or so, especially since it’s going to be strength light characters using arrow. All of this I had to mod out, so hooray for simple mods.

  13. Mist says:

    Good news about the bow & arrows. One of the first things I did when playing my first “stealthy” character was create a mod that dramatically increased the damage modifier for bow and arrow stealth attacks (or maybe it was for all stealth attacks..). Sneaking around a dungeon, putting some home-made poison on the arrow, hitting a bad guy with it, and then seeing him slump to the floor before he can reach you = awesome. But in vanilla Oblivion it always ended in you running away from some porcupine (especially if you gimped your character by making alchemy a major skill and then making loads of fancy poisons.. yay autolevelling).

    I’m not getting my hopes up for the melee combat. What I would find interesting would something where you can/need to execute various combos in order to defeat the bad guys (think Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones), but I understand that making a lot of combos/moves that look convincing in first person, when you’re dealing with many different weapons and different enemy types, would cost a ridiculous amount of money.

    • Lack_26 says:

      The fleeing from a porcupine thing was a bit silly, personally I’d love to be able to run backwards and fire arrows with unerring accuracy, though in all likely-hood I think I’d probably just fall over and shoot myself in the leg.

    • Eclipse says:

      I’d like to play that mod of yours…

  14. phlebas says:

    But what if the combat was never the bit I was interested in in the first place and I don’t want the experience to be more like a console action game?

    • Mist says:

      There’s also that..

      “In game development, the visual improvements, non-player character AI tweaks, and new storytelling philosophies are all for naught if the base activity the player performs the most frequently is uninteresting or unrefined. In the case of an action role-playing game ”

      In my Oblivion/Morrowind runs, combat certainly wasn’t my base activity (partly because the default combat simply wasn’t any fun for me). I’ll be glad if they make the combat more fun, but sad if combat takes an even larger role than it already has (more badguys scattered around the countryside / in dungeons ) at the cost of the other elements in the game.

    • Premium User Badge

      Joshua says:

      I’d rather wish that they’d invest in combat and drop everything else instead of focussing entirely on graphics and dropping everything else, which is what they did with oblivion…

    • Lack_26 says:

      There’s combat in Elder Scrolls games? I always wondered why people where trying to hit me.

  15. Sarlix says:

    It sounds like they’ve looked at what the modding community did and thought ‘Yeah lets just do that’

    Particularly with ‘knocking people off balance’ and ‘timed blocking’ There are mods that do this for Oblivion. Not that this is a bad thing of course. I just hope they put equal focus on the story and rpg elements – and don’t have Jauffre voicing every other npc!

    Edit: Some of what I was referring to link to youtube.com

  16. RedViv says:

    Without full body awareness this would be completely out of place. So, Bethesda, show us some feet in first person! Your new sister Arkane can show you how that works!

    • Jad says:

      Yes yes yes. Showing your body in first person games is very nearly a requirement for me, unless you’re making something ultra-arcadey. It increases immersion immensely. It’s 2011, goddammit!

  17. frenz0rz says:

    Im particularly excited about the different mechanics for swords, axes and maces – I think such distinctions between weapons is what TES has always needed, particularly since with a weapon such as Umbra in Oblivion there was really little reason to choose anything else. I want to slash some lowly Khajiit in the face with my mighty cleaver, take a step back, and watch him BLEED. Poison? Pah! Who needs it?

    • Sarlix says:

      Er..Alchemists?

      Side note: Whats wrong with Khajiit?? I always thought they were quite refined and noble! At least this one thinks so!

    • phlebas says:

      Saucer of milk for Sarlix?

    • frenz0rz says:

      Perhaps its just because every Khajiit seems to have some sort of personality problem. Like that utter dick in the Dark Brotherhood who keeps calling me a stinking ape, or the boxer in Bruma who said I was a petulant child. Piss right off, you mangy housecats.

    • Voidy says:

      > Like that utter dick in the Dark Brotherhood who keeps calling me a stinking ape.

      I cannot but note that his attitude changes dramatically at a certain point in Dark Brotherhood questline.. ;-)

  18. Nameless1 says:

    “Skyrim is sounding more and more interesting!”
    No.

    • Premium User Badge

      Harlander says:

      … but yes!

    • Doesntmeananything says:

      For me it’s less interesting and more how it just should be. All these issues they are addressing are so well-known that I would’ve altogether ignored the game if the developers hadn’t done anything about those problems. In all fairness, though, magic system does sound somewhat original, but at this point I seriously doubt their credibility. They have showed their tendencies to eloquent, yet groundless promises with Oblivion. So it’s kind of disappointing that most of what they have to present right now isn’t as compelling, as it all will most likely turn out to be just half-true.

      And those quotes of Todd Howard… Ah, I seriously hate the guy. You would think that the leading man behind big, successful studio which is famous for creating fairly complex and atmospheric RPGs is at least a slight bit sophisticated. I’m not saying he’s a yokel, but he’s not gone too far from an average “dude” in the way he talks and presents the game. Some interviews I watched have only consolidated my point of view.

      Just hope that my general scepticism towards this game would ultimately help me enjoy a great experience (I hope) much more immensely.

  19. thebigJ_A says:

    I just read the bit about the dragon shouts. I was skeptical at first, but the fact that you find words around the world, and each of the twenty shouts has three words, sounds like an awesome open-world quest. Plus, one of the shouts lets you call a dragon. Allied dragons!! Nerdgasm!

    I’m trying to keep things in perspective. As much as I love TES, and even F3, they always have had issues, and aside from Morrowind never live up fully to their promise. But, Bethesda is saying all the right things right now.

    I can’t wait!

  20. Pijama says:

    “Medieval Muhammad Ali”

    WHAT DO YOU MEAN IT’S NOT AWESOME

  21. Novotny says:

    I go for the eyes when fighting with chopsticks. Stabby stabby!

  22. Tei says:

    There are two type of games:
    – Games with working trebuchets
    – Lesser games

  23. PUMPY says:

    Is everyone else reading a completely different article to me? This reads like a description of a completely uninspired console fighting game. Timed blocking and a shakey camera do not make your combat system automatically good.

    The only thing in that article that sounds even vaguely interesting are the dragon shouts, and I can’t say I really trust Bethesda to implement them well.

  24. pakoito says:

    Overgrowth + TES. Just sayin’

    link to youtube.com

  25. BigJonno says:

    I love how improving the combat someone makes it “like a console action game” like good combat is something exclusive to consoles. If someone could direct me to all these awesome first person melee combat games available on consoles. It’s just that when I want some good melee combat I play Dark Messiah, Zeno Clash or Mount & Blade. On my PC.

    • PUMPY says:

      I’m saying they’re not improving the combat. Out of the very few genuinely new things they describe in the article, most seem at best superficial and at worst irritating. It’s this that brings to mind a bland console game.

    • Mad Hamish says:

      They’re just looking for something to bitch about. The games you mentioned have three of the best first person combat systems I’ve played.
      I don’t know what console games these poeple are playing. Melee combat on consoles is button mashing, button combos and quick time events.
      I would like them to expand on their statments, if they would be so kind.

    • BigJonno says:

      I find it genuinely hard to believe that anyone could think the combat sounds worse. Oblivion had dull, floaty, repetitive combat that was neither realistic nor entertaining. It sounds like they’re adding depth and strategy to combat and giving it some weight.

  26. irongamer says:

    Sounds like some interesting changes. I like active blocking and the changes to ranged sound good. While I’ve only played this series beginning with Morrowind, I have been back to play Morrowind a number of times. The format is just fun. Adding physics in gameplay and more active combat sounds great. Looking forward to this title.

    PS RPS –
    Your WordPress comment addon warned me to post at a slower rate… This was my first post in weeks. *hangs head* You could just say you don’t want my opinion. *sniffle* Pressing back and then pressing post a second time sent the comment through. Might want to look into that, if you are not already.

  27. nuh uh no way says:

    I don’t care what anyone says, I’m still going to pronounce it “Skeer’m”.

  28. terry says:

    The Elder Scrolls : Gameinformer.

  29. Easydog says:

    I am pleased. It irked me the amount of arrows it took to down someone in Oblivion, the npc’s being unperturbed by becoming pincushions.

  30. Calabi says:

    I dont know, I’m not liking the sound of it. Looks like they are just making combat harder without asking whether that is what they should be doing.

    Timing your blocks, why? Whats wrong with holding your shield up, you cant move and you cant attack when doing so.

    But I expert you will also have to level your shield ability up. So you as well as timing the block correctly it’ll only probably block half damage or less, if your shield ability isnt fully levelled.

    Looks like their arent any dodge moves, so its hard to avoid getting hit. Sounds like a weak combat system(weak as in flawed, and they have to make up its flaws by using arbitrary limits).

    The biggest factor is how many hits does it take to kill both them and you. I’m guessing its still loads to kill them and only a few to kill you.

    Also sounds like its still only geared to singular combat, if there is more than one enemy you are screwed(probably).

    Another thing is you will likely get into hundreds of battles, why does every battle have to be as hard as possible? It will get very tedious for everyone.

    I’d like to see something like Batman AA or Bayonetta. In that they know you are going to win(thats the point) but its not about that its about how stylishly you can do it. You fight them weaving in and out without getting hit, and dispatch them using the most creative means possible.

    • Fiatil says:

      Time your blocks why? Have you ever played Oblivion? It’s a bit silly staring down an NPC with your shield up for 20 seconds because attack=recoil. They eventually break down and just say “Fuck it! I’m attacking!”, so hooray you win! Having to time your blocks makes the system a little bit less stupid looking and silly. With Oblivion I basically wound up timing my blocks anyways so that I felt like I was cheating the AI less.

  31. JulianPierce says:

    “‘I think you get very used the idea that enemies are all there for you to mow through, but it doesn’t seem like someone’s life is going to end. We’re trying to get that across.’

    Nothing drives this brutality home more than the introduction of special kill animations.”

    Ehh…

    • cjlr says:

      Oh God I missed that line.

      Yeah, fuck that.

      It’s already a game, damnit. My suspension of disbelief extends far enough for models to simply go ragdoll when that last hitpoint is gone. Locking me into some lame-ass fixed kill animation is not helping. It is the opposite of helping.

  32. Voidy says:

    Looks like Bethesda are taking their inspiration from the Oblivion mod Deadly Reflex, what with shield bashing, killing moves and stuff. That can only be good, ’cause DR really made combat bearable and even somewhat exciting.

    However, balancing overpowered ranged attacks by making arrows scarce.. that sounds like a silly idea to me. Build that scarcity into the game economy and you’ll have players finding ways to work around it and carry kazillion arrows anyway. Limit the actual number of arrows the character can carry at any given moment and players will be forced to make ardurous backtracks to a weapon shop whenever their supply runs low. Both options suck.

    • sinister agent says:

      Does sound a bit of a backwards way to approach it. Why not just make archery incredibly inaccurate until you get very good at it? You know, like real archery. And have shields actually block arrows, as they were basically designed to do – I lost count of the number of times an archer popped up in Oblivion and my natural reaction was to raise a shield. Then remember too late that this does nothing whatsoever, and die immediately from some kind of full metal jacket arrow.

      That way archery would be difficult to master, leave you exposed on a miss, and all but useless against someone with a shield.

  33. The Dude says:

    Fuck the combat. What I want most from Bethesda is believable character animations. And dialog lip sync. I never played Oblivion before FO3, but I started last week, and it’s impossible to believe for me that the animation and lip sync and dialog voice acting has gone down from Oblivion to FO3.

  34. Soon says:

    Are they including morale or some sort of flee conditions? If I stand on a ledge and pepper the unwary with arrows, how do they react if they can’t reach me? It’s a weakness in pretty much every RPG. Thief tried to handle it.

    Regardless, they seem to be going for it this time.

    • sinister agent says:

      God, I hope so. It’s got to be one of the quickest fixes to add a “leg it, you fool, you’re injured” function to the AI – loads of modders did it in both Morrowind and Oblivion. It would make such a massive difference to the feel of the world – just imagine going for a stroll to pick flowers (alchemy, shaddap) or visit the next town without absolutely every living thing in a mile-wide radius charging directly at you until dead.

      Hey, little rat! The 6 foot guy with the armour who can produce fire from his hands is not a delicious sunflower seed. I thought you were supposed to be intelligent.

  35. Grape Flavor says:

    I think I should to try to avoid every RPS comment thread on Skyrim between now and release. It just makes me really angry. No matter how promising and improved things are, people find an excuse to whine and bitch and insult.

    There’s healthy skepticism, and then there’s flat out bias. Like how people hate on XCOM even though it looks promising, just because of the genre change from the original. Or how people mourn The Outsider even though it’s vaporware, empty promises, and a mediocre trailer (you think Bethesda’s animations are bad?). Because the guy in charge made some decent game 15 years ago.

    A sizable portion of RPS have already decided that they hate Skyrim and are now in the process of looking for reasons why. It’s as simple as that.

    • The Dude says:

      Yeah, dude. I do. Bethesda animations are horrible. The only time I didn’t feel they sucked was when there was a mechanical robot thing on screen in FO3. Because, you know, they’re supposed to be mechanical and stiff.

  36. theblazeuk says:

    There’s a gaminess to it, apparently.

  37. sinister agent says:

    Some promising ideas in there. I’m not convinced of the ‘limit arrows’ economic thing though – it sounds like the wrong way to go about keeping archery under control. I also hope there’s more of an immediacy and vulnerability to the combat like in Mount & Blade, so that a couple of good hits can take down most anyone, otherwise it’ll still be the same story of slowly chipping away at health bars, only now with more timing needed.

    But it does sound like my hopes might be fulfilled. If they can have the AI keep up with these changes… yeah, this could be interesting.