Skyrole: 29% Of You Are Warriors

That's not you that isn't.
So. I lost a bet with myself. Now I owe myself fifty quid. Thanks a bunch, Internet. I was certain, absolutely certain, that the majority of you would have pursued mostly wizardly activities in Skyrim, what with all the magic and the magic college and everything. But not so. The majority of the twenty thousand people who polled in our Skyrim survey played as warriors, with mages (21%) coming in second. Amazingly, assassins and thieves were neck and neck for third place with 14% each. There’s a 13% bunch of hangars on who couldn’t actually figure out what they’d spent most of their time doing of course, but then this is an Elder Scrolls game, so perhaps we’ll forgive the ambiguity.

Ooh, I can feel another poll coming on. Any suggestions?


  1. sinister agent says:

    No poll on what the poll should be on? Hmph.

    • Network Crayon says:

      A missed opportunity.

      I’m a stealthy Archer me’self.

    • Jim Rossignol says:

      Ooh, that’s a good idea. METAPOLL, I call it.

    • Premium User Badge

      Hodge says:

      Have multiple polls which refer to each other and call it INTERPOLL.

    • plugmonkey says:

      @ Network Crayon

      Me too. This is one of the first RPGs I’ve played where a bow feels like a weapon, rather than a means of attracting someone’s attention. When I shoot people, they actually fall over, like they’ve been shot. Or, if I catch them just right, go flying 500 metres through the air.

    • Surgeon says:

      I’m a stealthy archer battle mage.

    • Necroscope says:

      I was an argonian stealth archer for an 80 hour play through completing the main quest and got a sense my adventure was complete. Completely and utterly owned everything even on master difficulty. Anyone else thinks the game is a tad easy ? So, I restarted designing myself a warrior with 2 handed weapon spec, archery for ranged openings or for…ranged combat, sword and shield for fun, 2 one handers for even more lol fun. May try out a few more shadowy routes through the game joining the dark brotherhood or becoming a vampire or just go about slaughtering innocents across skyrim until my bloodlust is satisfied.

    • zontax says:

      If you think the game is easy you should try to be a destruction mage past level 30 (which is when the levelscaling kicks in).

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      Maltose says:

      I’ve only dabbled in dual wielding weapons (I usually go one-handed + shield, but shield is useless against magic.), but I don’t feel like dual wielding gives a big bonus to damage. The issue (as far as I can tell), is that the player can’t independently and simultaneously swing both weapons. Unless the player uses a double power attack, they have to swing with one weapon, wait for the animation to finish, then swing with the other weapon. So instead of 2x damage, you only get 1x, maybe 1.5x, compared to a one-handed weapon and shield.

    • Trousers says:


      Are you sure? I’ve noticed tapping both mouse buttons does a dual-weapon swing, while if you hold them down it does a dual-weapon power attack. They seem to be the same animation, but holding them down makes your character go “Huh!” like the other power attacks.

    • Ezhar says:

      I’m a stealthy, thieving and pickpocketing sniper with a restoration spell, a glass mace of fire and that two-handed ebony blade for when things just need to be cut. I also carry a bag of potions and poisons for when things get tough (but they do so rarely).

      I like games that don’t force me into silly predefined classes/roles.

    • Lone Gunman says:

      I am a sword and shield heavy armored warrior with some archery on the side.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Bit of a point there though. Because I don’t really play any of those. An Assasinish Thief with a few spells here and there.

    • Nevard says:

      Where Dual Wielding shines is when you use the Elemental Fury shout
      Level 3 Elemental Fury and Level 2 Dual Flurry is an incredibly powerful combination, you swing your weapon multiple times per second

    • Daniel Is I says:

      Dual-wielding heavy barbarian in full Daedric, myself.

      Enchanted a set of armor to improve my ability to boost weapon/armor stats, for a total of an 80% improvement increase on top of my 100 Smithing. Enchanted a set of armor to boost my one-handed weapon damage, for a total of 160% on top of my 100% from perks. That’s not even including the bonus 50% I have to power attacks.

      Each of my maces does about 172 base damage with an additional 60 or so damage each from double enchantments. Have another set which are unenchanted to take advantage of Elemental Fury and its allowance of multiple attacks per second.

      In other words, I can one-shot a Blood Dragon on Adept with one dual-wield power attack. GET. ON. MY. LEVEL.

    • etusa says:

      @Daniel Is I: who’d want to lower their difficulty level to adept?

    • Necroscope says:

      Adept difficulty is misleading, although it did serve as my intro to the game.

    • Richeh says:

      I’m a sneaky archer battlemage in the Deus Ex vein of “sneakysneakysneakyspotted NOW EVERYONE DIES”.

      It bothers me that I’m distributing my precious levels in three disciplines. My merchant-of-death bowslinging is suffering just to keep a pocketful of inferno on hand.

  2. Njordsk says:

    Nah, opening a mage sadic face in two with a two handed axe is way more classy than fireball.

  3. Deadly Habit says:

    There’s something more satisfying about being a thief wielding a great sword and being able to decapitate people if you get caught…

    • Danarchist says:

      Haha I told my coworkers I was playing as a two hander wielding nord assassin and they stared at me like I was insane. “But dude you don’t get the x15 bonus with a two hander!?!”
      Screw conformity!

    • Zelius says:

      Same here, except I use dual wielded war axes whenever I get caught. A slicing and dicing thief!

    • simonh says:

      What happens if you sneak attack dual-wielding daggers, is it possible to get the x15 bonus for both?

    • blorg.beard says:

      simonh, yes if you’re quick. I get two sneak attacks with a single dagger if I’m quick enough. Possibly you need high sneak to keep your victim from seeing you too quickly.

    • Hidden_7 says:

      You don’t even need to be particularly quick, just do the dual power attack for maximum x15 damage nonsense.

    • Daniel Is I says:

      Wear the gloves from the Dark Brotherhood. 2x damage on top of 15x damage.

      I think it actually says you sneak attack for 30x damage.

    • Hidden_7 says:

      Yup. And you dual wield daggers and do a dual wield power attack, making the damage of the two weapons additive, from stealth with a x30 multiplier, and yeah, suffice to say, you do a lot of damage.

  4. cafe says:

    I can’t see why, the sword combat is horrible! I had to change my warrior orc to a mage midgame because of it and now i have no use for my berserker power at all!

    • rei says:

      Unfortunately magic damage doesn’t scale, so it gets less fun later in the game when you need to whittle down the increasing hp pools.

    • Unaco says:

      I wouldn’t call it terrible. It could be better, sure, but I quite like the combat system. Most fights are over quite quickly, and quite bloodily… it’s a simple system, there isn’t much to it, but what there is to it is well done, and allows for several strategies.

    • cafe says:

      @rei thats why I always have a warrior companion with me. The companion a.i. is so weak that it drove me into quitting the game as later dungeons get frustrating with a companion and i ddn’t feel like putting another 20 hours into the game just to start over with a warrior.

    • chriskin says:

      two, heavily enchanted, legendary daedric swords
      yeah, i stopped using my level 100 destruction magic for these beauties

    • sneetch says:

      I’m not sure what those several strategies are, it seems to be pretty much just mad flailing to me.

      I wanted to be a dual wielding rogue but there’s no blocking (or parrying) when you’re dual wielding… which is a serious omission, I think. Maybe it’s just me but you basically get whacked a lot if you’re dual wielding. I’d like a passive parry chance (as in if you’re not swinging the blade you should have a chance of parrying with it) as well as an active block chance.

      As it is I’m considering parking my dark elf who’s a bit of a mix of spell, sword and stealth (arcane trickster) – possibly not enough of any of them as I seem to be dying quite a lot – and creating a pure mage or pure sword and board fighter until someone creates a parrying mod (if they do, that is).

    • telpscorei says:

      For the combat and blocking, it’s a bit weird for dual wielders. There’s a book in game that basically says, you need a shield or two hands on a weapon to block. Which is why I went with two handed weapons.

      As for the mechanics themselves, once you’ve gotten some perks, it really opens up. Currently I can do a power attack to break blocks, a bash (hold block and hit attack, you can do this to start with) to interupt a power attack, and move for position. In the future there’s different types of power attacks with different effects, effects added dependant on weapon type and block slo-mo when a power attack comes in.

      It’s not incredible or ground-breaking or anything, but it is fun enough to smack people around. I was worried it wouldn’t be, but I’m really enjoying it.

    • Danarchist says:

      I have found that it is easier (and much more effective) to dodge or simply step backwards as they swing. I actually dropped heavy armor after realizing how much harder it made it to move around. Once I found the Steed Stone I could have switched back, but I had already invested heavily in light armor smithing and perks at that point.

      I think warriors are definitely harder than a pure mage btw. Any mage worth their soul stones has a bit of investment in alteration and restoration. Dual casted restore spells can heal you to full in a tick and cost nothing for mana. Summoned Daedra and aetrochs (sp?) work much better than followers because they are much more resistant to your destruction spells. And if your smart your using the same damage type as the elemental you cast, fireballs with fire ‘roch etc.

      Another tip if you prefer followers is to make a set of armor with resistances to your preferred damage type (we all have one) or multiple sets if you like. I have Lydia up to something like 80% fire resist, and she inately has 50% cold resist from being Nord. Seriously they are much less tedious when decked out in a set of Orcish armor. Life absorb weapons don’t hurt either.

    • Unaco says:

      Strategies include position, making sure you’re not surrounded… choosing who to wail on first… using the different power attacks in combination with movement… throwing in shouts… getting space to use some restoration… choosing the weapon type based on need for speed or damage. Sure, if you mash buttons you’ll maybe make it through. But put in a little effort, and you’ll make it through a lot more.

      Dual wielding is supposed to not have a block/parry… That’s the point of it. It doubles damage at the expense of blocking.

    • sneetch says:

      “Dual wielding is supposed to not have a block/parry… That’s the point of it. It doubles damage at the expense of blocking.”

      Fair enough and a good point, maybe I just have to put on my big-boy pants and get stuck in.

      I’ve been dodging in and out, retreating to heal, circling them to keep my target between me and the rest and so on but it just doesn’t work too well for me. Anyway, I reckon I’ve been dual wielding wrong. I tend to wield a sword and spell but I tend to forget to using both hands at once and destruction spells tend to mean I’ve no mana for restoration (and then I forget to swap out the useless spell hand for another weapon). I’ll just grab a couple of nasty daggers and head down the thief route more.

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      As a pure mage, I think having an atronach, a follower equipped with heavily enchanted equipment, or both is essential. You can even take advantage of the powerful AoE spells without much worry if you jack up a follower’s elemental resistances. If you are still leery about them, the Master level lightning spell is not AoE but stream-of-damage, and it is ridiculously powerful while being fairly magicka-efficient. You’ll still need a follower or atronach to get the breathing room to charge it up, however.

    • Reapy says:

      Conjuration have made me walk through this game without paying attention. I picked a breton mage, doing conjuration and destruction first. I put every level point into magic (starting to do health around level 30 ) and went for conjur robes and as much mana/mana regen as I could find.

      I made it through most of the tough stuff with the fire antaroch. They hold agro really well. You just have to be passive with your mana. If the fight is tough, you just recast as soon as your conjuration dies. If the monsters agro you, just sprint back towards your conjuration and they will start attacking him. Then you hang back and wait for mana regen so you can immediately recast if it goes down.

      Once you get dremora lord, and then get twin souls perk to have 2 at once, it is pretty unstoppable. Basically my routine is that when out of combat, I double cast 2 dremora lords, then the alteration shield, then wait for recharge all of 10 seconds. Walk into the room and dremora lords kill everything while taunting the crap out of them. I essentially start looting the room while my demons are busy cutting the heads off of everything.

      I completed the main quest around level 35, and while the dremora lords had trouble with the tough enemies along the way, with 2 of them, it is trivial to recast another one as soon as it dies, never having to worry about achieving agro.

      If you do get in trouble, there is a dragon shout that makes you ethereal, which is great for clearing out and letting the conjurations grab agro.

      Also, destruction is great with the impact perk, that staggers them on double cast. As long as you have mana you can defeat any solo opponent by chain staggering them to death with a lower level spell than your max.

      But yeah I’ve found the game not too challenging on normal difficulty using an all magic build, I hardly even use resto to heal, so busy conjuring things. Maybe this changes on master difficulty though, not sure.

    • Berzee says:

      “the autoleveling causes a vicious circle, since its underpowered youll end up using other skills, so youll level up along with your enemies, making destruction even weaker, making you use other skills and so on”

      You don’t have to level up until you’re ready =)

    • Danarchist says:

      I am not sure how people find destruction magic underpowered. And no, your not the first or even 20th I have heard say that. Maybe it is just that I am not high enough level with my mage yet to see the damage dropping off?
      I am at lvl 28 and have focused mostly on destruction, conjuring, and enchanting. I do not “one shot” things as I read dual weilders can do, but I am pretty sure I wouldn’t enjoy the game if I could. My Daedra seems almost overpowered since I got him, only on bosses and those freaking blind mage guys do I need to heal him. And they hold aggro better than almost any companion except that big nord chick I run with sometimes.
      I have a similar level Conan analogue that I think actually has a harder time in most cases (I get to play at work, envy meeee!). I think if I had one complaint with mages its mana regenerating so slow in combat. I am sitting at almost 150% bonus to regen and dual casting eats it up fairly quickly in a fight against more than 3 or a lightning caster. But even then I pumped a couple perks into Alchemy and go herb shopping once in awhile and never seem to have issues maintaining a supply.

    • GuyPerson says:

      I’m a lvl 32 dual casting destruction mage and so far, I’ve found that destruction magic is way overpowered, especially with the perk that makes dual casted spells stun enemies. It works on DRAGONS and DRAGON PRIESTS for God’s sake!! With enough magicka potions or cost reduction enchantments, it’s almost impossible to lose a 1v1 fight.

  5. Mr_Day says:

    I am interested as to how many people who played as warriors found the dragon fight difficulty.

    Playing as a wizard, the dragons are an interesting aside who fall down very quickly. They are half dead before they land, then they get splattered.

    Though mage fights in the game are fantastic. Fireballs whoosh and wards shatter, great fun.

    • MrTrent says:

      I’m playing as a warrior (greatsword wielding Orc) and the dragon fights are annoyingly easy.

    • Spoon says:

      It’s quite easy to melee dragons, really. My heavy armor / 2h character dispatches them quite quickly once they finally land, often not giving them enough time to begin flying again. Strangely enough, dragons have quite weak melee attacks.

      Actually, I’ve found that my heavy armor / 2h character is way too strong for the standard difficulty setting, and am thinking of starting over as something else. He kills the first three tiers of humanoid enemies in a single power attack at level 32.

    • Danarchist says:

      Trick to dragons as a melee is to tapped them a couple times with a bow/spell, then when they try and roast you from the air step behind a tree. After you do this a couple times they seem scripted to land if there is room.

    • OpT1mUs says:

      Just up the difficulty. You can kill anything with a dick on adept…

    • Jumwa says:

      You can up the difficulty at any given time, so why reroll?

      Also, to the people in the thread above saying destruction is under powered and broken: are we playing the same game? I’m level 52 and playing on the second highest difficulty setting, a double-charged shock spell for me kills most anything in a few hits at most. Dragons, centurions, etc..

      And mana? Just stack mana reduction enchants. I have 85% mana reduction costs to destruction spells through enchantments (could easily have 100%) and am not even wearing a wizardly robe. My spells cost practically nothing and I haven’t even invested in the Master perk that halves mana consumption because it’s not been an issue at all.

  6. The_B says:

    I’d genuinely like a poll on how most people use their companions, or if they actually use them tactically or just let them do their own thing. On a similar note I’d also like to know how most people deal with traps, whether they buff themselves up and set them off themselves, try to avoid them, try to disarm them or order their poor hapless companions to set them off first…

    • cafe says:

      I only use magic to take down enemies so i always have a warrior companion with me who keeps the enemies at a distance. If i didn’t have him i’d get rushed by the enemies who can kill me easily due to my weak mage armor. This has actually caused a lot of frustration to me because the companion ai is so weak :(

      I usually use the shouts to deal with traps, sprint for the blades and stuff and unrelenting force for the magic traps on the floor which kill me instantly when i step on them!

    • MOKAIBA says:

      Ive had four of them and all four have died.

      I might use them as bait or they just suck bad enough to always eventually die.

    • Grygus says:

      When possible, I trigger traps with enemies. I will tell a companion to “wait here”, jump over the button, and go fetch someone to pull them back to the trap if I have to. Sometimes it is honestly more work than the result is worth, but it is just intrinsically funny to me so I rarely resist the temptation, especially when burning oil is involved.

      If it’s a trap that resets infinitely (like those wall spikes) then I just skirt past it and quickly keep going; the companion will sometimes follow in my steps and also avoid the trap, but if not he/she will eventually teleport to my side when they are done playing around.

      This perhaps only works for me because I am a heavy Warrior build and don’t actually need the companion on the vast majority of encounters.

  7. Zyper says:

    I can understand that, but magic is definitely a butt load of fun… However as for the next poll? Maybe a different game poll, or how many of us are actually playing Skyrim?

  8. ckpk says:

    A poll on how many people tried talking to the dragons

    • Lipwig says:

      This comment is a spoiler if you care about the Deeply Moving Emotional Cinematic Literature of the games main plot stop reading.

      there is a point where a dragon tries to talking to you and you have to talk to it to advance the plot

      i blindly attacked it on sight only for it to be invulnerable and unresponsive to anything other than “press e”

      funny how that rpg cliche gets turned on its head and still makes skyrim seem like less of an rpg

    • Rinox says:

      Apart from the RPS meme, I feel obligated to point that in Daggerfall, you could in fact ‘talk’ to the dragons. Well, they were only dragonlings (since dragons clearly were supposed to have disappeared before Skyrim), but still. You could learn Dragonish, Harpy, Giantish, Impish, Daedric, Nymph, Centaurian, Orcish and Spriggan. Basically almost every intelligent enemy could be calmed by talking to them (!).

      Add to that other talking skills like streetwise, etiquette, mercantile and you could make and play a polyglot linguist, haha! Of course Daggerfall’s bugs took a lot of the fun out of some of these less used systems, but the idea was great.

    • Hidden_7 says:

      Although the talking was limited to “a passive check of your language skill to see whether the enemy wouldn’t attack you on sight or not,” in-universe, yes it was talking.

    • Rinox says:

      True, but I’d say even that is preferable to the rabies-like attack mode almost everyone and everything outside a town in Skyrim goes into the moment they see you. I mean, surely some of these random camping bandits or whatever would bother to ask what I was doing there instead of instantly going for my throat?

    • Hidden_7 says:

      Some do. Or at least, they don’t ask what you’re doing, but they don’t care as long as you stay away from them. There are quite a few folks in the game that will draw their weapons and issue a warning when you get to close, but not attack you until you approach closer. Even some Bandit camps will generally stay in their camps, maybe taking pot shots at you should you get near.

      Even a lot of the animals will not scuffle with you unless you wander right up near them, deciding that you’re far too much trouble to chase down all the way over there. That’s still ignoring all the game animals that don’t attack you at all, or the fact that a lot of beasties will prioritize hunting the game animals over you, and of course the non-hostile animals such as the horkers, mammoths, and their friendly giant herders.

      The ecology of Skyrim is actually much improved over Oblivion’s “everything runs at you as soon as it sees you” and I’d say is even an improvement over Morrowind’s ecology. And given how Daggerfall was pretty much “can you speak well enough for it to not attack you, if not then it will run at you,” I’d say Skyrim’s ecology is best of the series. It’s not far off the A-Life of the STALKERs, I’d even venture to say, though it’s not quite there yet.

    • Rinox says:

      Fair points. I agree with all of them. I still think “silly wolves!” every time they attack me and I strike them down with a blink of an eye, but clearly wolves aren’t smart enough to distinguish between a lost peasant and a travelling man-God, so that that doesn’t bother me. ;-)

      Still, it would have been nice to have a skill that allows for negotiations with intelligent hostile creatures. Even if it’s just one skill called ‘negotiation’ or whatever. It could make for an entirely different dynamics and playstyle if you could talk to bandits and (try to) explain that they will all very likely die if they mess with you so to keep out of your way. Maybe you can even ask THEM for a toll? Or to tell a Spriggan that you intend no harm to the forest? And so on.

      I think there’s a lot of room there to work in. I’m not asking for a full-fledged realistics dialogue simulator, even Daggerfall’s skill check would suffice for me. But a little dialogue + skill check (+ fact check – are you really that threatening looking? Are you really not messing with the forest ecology? etc) could go a long way to make the game more diverse and interesting. :-)

    • Hidden_7 says:

      Yeah, I’d agree with that. I think the Speech skill is under-utilized at the moment, and throwing a couple perks its way to allow for more non-hostile wandering would be nice. At the moment the intimidate skill works like you mentioned, with checking your speech as well as your level versus the targets level. The systems are in there, they are just under-used at the moment. Perhaps a mod when the CK comes out that runs a passive intimidate check whenever you get near bandits or such to see whether they think they can take you, or just quietly pray you leave them alone. It couldn’t be THAT hard to do, could it?

  9. Vexing Vision says:

    I would like a poll on whether we should rename RPS to Rock, Paper, Skyrim.

    I love the coverage by the way, because I am just as genuinely excited by the game as you obviously are. :)

    • Jim Rossignol says:

      It’ll be Rock, Paper, Christmas soon enough.

    • The_B says:

      Excuse me a minute Jim, while I shout uncontrollably:


    • Inglourious Badger says:

      Oooh, advent calendar! Yes! Quite excited about this year’s. It’s been a bit of a vintage year for AAAs and Indies alike, has it not. Wonder what will win overall best? My prediction is Skyrim, with Binding of Isaac and Deus Ex running close 2nd and 3rds.

    • ArcaneSaint says:

      Don’t forget that one indie game, Minecraft I believe it’s called, which was released sometime last month. I hear it’s been quite the success, even though it has been stuck in development for almost 2 years.

    • Hidden_7 says:

      As much as I recognize Minecrafts achievements, I’d be more than a little peeved if Minecraft’s long development allowed it to snag top spot multiple years. It’s like, yeah, alright, enough already, people love Minecraft, I get it.

      Obviously, the Hivemind can do as it pleases, just sayin’

  10. akeso says:

    A poll on if you use the console to cheat, summon items, pass skills, fly, or “what console.”

    Sure, this would exclude non-pc users, but they are already outside the party… sitting on the lawn… crying to themselves because no one loves them.

  11. Drake Sigar says:

    I’ve tried all of em, assassins and thieves have the most interesting quests and storylines.

    • s1gny_m says:

      Yeah, I found the mage story to be severely underwhelming. I got to the end and was like, wait, you made me archmage for that? All I really did was bash some heads, guys; not sure that makes me archmage material.

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:


      My understanding is that the Archmage basically hand-picked you. In fact, if you read up on it, you’ll learn that Skyrim’s arch-mages were traditionally picked via a trial in Labyrinthian. While the labyrinth itself is purely optional (and not actually very challenging), you aren’t made Archmage until you gain the Staff of Magnus from, you guessed it, Labyrinthian in which you learn about and rectify a grave failure on the part of the previous arch-mage (a doomed expedition into the ruins with what seemed to me to end with him enslaving the souls of his fellow mages to incapacitate the dragon priest Morokei). Of course, it also means that you survived the trial, which was originally the criteria for becoming archmage in the first place, and obtained the only artifact that can stop the mysterious device from unleashing strange and hostile powers upon all of Skyrim (not entirely successful, but not the apocalyptic scenario that it easily could have been).

      In short, it’s perfectly in keeping with Skyrim traditions and makes perfect sense based on what you actually accomplish, although it’s perhaps not highlighted very well in the questline itself.

    • Berzee says:


      Yes, I mostly blame the academy mages. It’s not like you don’t do anything exciting as part of the mages’ college (though like some other guilds, it seems kind of like an Accelerated Program) — it’s mostly that their reactions to your accomplishments are rather underwhelming. Most of them still treat you like a student (and let’s be honest, I’m still barely past apprentice in terms of skill) and Tolfdir’s reaction after the last fight is just kind of…”well, you did that”.

  12. xeon06 says:

    A pool on whether people are doing the main quest or not. Not saying I’ll never do it, but it’s far far away in my mind at the moment.

    • Berzee says:

      I haven’t even gone to High Hrothgar yet, but I really should just so I can upgrade my shouts.

  13. Dominic White says:

    My character is an assassin werewolf warrior archer with a penchant for opening a fight with a blast of fire magic.

    Not the stealthy kind of assassin, really. More then ‘shock and awe’ variety. Hence why I still have Lydia with me, all armored up and rocking a massive magical two-handed sword.

  14. Megadyptes says:

    29% is not a majority, that would be >50%. What we have here is a plurality of voters being warriors. [/pedantic sperg]

    • Eddy9000 says:

      Pedantic and wrong, what a tragic combination.

    • sneetch says:

      Edit: woah, spectacular reply fail, carry on, pretend I’m not even here.

    • dysphemism says:

      Pedantic and not wrong, as it so happens.
      Tragedy averted!

    • Grygus says:

      According to Wikipedia, majority means the same thing as plurality in British English. Therefore, in the context of this website, his protest is not valid.

    • Eddy9000 says:

      Not valid.

    • Hidden_7 says:

      If majority and plurality mean the same thing in British English, what do you fine fellows use to mean plurality… or is it majority you don’t have a word for? Basically what demarcation have you available to express the difference between “got the most votes” and “got most of the votes”?

  15. Unaco says:

    “Ooh, I can feel another poll coming on”

    Can you say that in a Frankie Howerd voice please Jom? Just for me.

  16. ulix says:

    Do you even play Skyrim?

    1. Yes, playing right now (how can I answer this poll then?)
    2. No, already had enough.
    3. No, not interested.
    4. No, waiting for modders to improve the game vastly (aka “get the Creation Kit out already!”)

    I’m in the (4) group.

    Difficult to resist, but there’s enough good games right now, luckily.

    • MOKAIBA says:

      im confused on how people are done with a game thats only been out for 11 days….on that same note, how the hell do you guys have 80+ hours already…no life?

      11×24 = 264 hours since release
      8×11 = 8 hour sleep x 11 days = 88
      8 work days x 8 hour shifts = 64
      1.5 hrs of eating, showering, driving to work, etc x 11 days = 16.5
      264-88-64 – 16.5 = 95.5 hours…

    • Grygus says:

      I was over 100 hours and done with the game last Friday (the 18th) because I’d completed the quest lines that interested me on that character (the main quest, civil war, and companions guild.) Will certainly play through the Thief and Assassin lines later, but I need a different character for that.

      I do have a life; for a week, it was Skyrim.

    • Big Daddy Dugger says:

      The last 15 hours were spent masturbating

  17. Jockie says:

    Until I realised you could set off Runes with magic it was a case of sending the companion in. Because for some reason while they outright killed me a lot of the time, they barely scratched Lydia et al.

    Edit: Reply fail!

    • Vexing Vision says:

      I learned something!

      I usually identified the rune in question, gulped a potion and went for it.

    • ACid says:

      Oh, that’s how you do it!
      I have usually summoned a pet on top of the rune. The cruel world of summoning :(

  18. Zealuu says:

    Skyrim Magic is flashy ragdoll-fun and everything, but since Bethesda opted for “funky effects” instead of the flexibility – and more important, progression in terms of damage to match ever-growing enemy HP pools – offered by spellmaking, pure mages are notably less effective than other playstyles mid to late-game. Stealth characters can do ten times the damage of master-level destruction spells with a single arrow, and warrior characters – especially with a shield – can outlast anything. This I now know, since I have one of each character archetype.

    • vecordae says:

      I play a sneak-conjoruor and can, with absolute authority, claim that spell damage DOES scale provided that spell summons a weapon you are already very skilled with. My conjured bow (it’s like a light saber for cowards!) does 2.7 kiloscads of damage and 8.1 kiloscads on a sneak attack. And I don’t even have archery maxed out yet.

    • Zealuu says:

      But Bound Weapons are still weapons (if somewhat less powerful than well-made/unique permanent weapons), affected by your weapon skill, associated perks and modifiers like stealth. For a pure mage, your primary source of damage should be the Destruction tree, and for the first 20-30 levels it is – but it doesn’t scale very well, which means you’ll grow increasingly reliant on your dual dremora summons once you “peak”.

  19. 18Rabbit says:

    I would be interested in seeing how far everyone has taken the main storyline quest and what level they are.

    • Ian says:

      Level 33, and still to do the next quest after first visiting the greybeards.

    • DigitalSignalX says:

      I’m lvl 46, 110 hours, and I need to deliver some object to the greybeards on top of the mountain to complete my training. So yeah, pretty much been ignoring main quest.

    • Matt says:

      You should really deliver that object. Even if you ignore the rest of the main quest that follows.

    • Zenicetus says:

      Level 17, and I stopped pursuing the main quest after visiting the Greybeards. I wanted to see dragons in the world, so I knew I had to at least start the main storyline. After visiting the Greybeards, it felt like a natural resting point to go off and explore the world for a while.

    • vecordae says:

      I’m level 30 and I’ve stopped the main story line quest at the point where [spoiler] flies down and [spoiler] me for an extended period of time because it gives him [spoiler]. I’ve fetched the [spoiler] for him, though, and just need to [spoiler spoiler] it near the gash and [spoiler] backwards in [spoiler spoiler spoiler spoiler] Sancho [spoiler spoiler spoiler] Golden Crisp cereal.

  20. Eddy9000 says:

    I liked being a pure mage, especially furying people and making them attack each other, but it quickly got into a summon then dual cast flame bolt routine. I’m really enjoying the sword andshield combat at the mo, visceral and reactive, dodging roubd the nack of people when theut power attaxk slo-mos and hacking them up. Mixed in some speech so I can buy wands and scrolls if i need some variety, and alchemy so i can still make people fury and flee.

    Id say that the poll represents the areas that have been most improved since oblivion. Stealth is the same, dual cast magic/ sword and spell is a bit different, combat has been vastly improved.

    I love the reactive incidental speech as well “Hey conjurer, conjiure me up a nice warm bed will you?”

  21. Stitched says:

    “There’s a 13% bunch of hangars on who couldn’t actually figure out what they’d spent most of their time doing”

    Am so totally playing a hangar in my next play-through.

    A hangar of spider-stuffed, bear-breathing dragons.

  22. Brun says:

    I think it may have been wiser to put Theives and Assassins in the same category as they tend to go hand-in-hand. If you consider them to be the same then the “Stealth” role is running only slightly behind the “Warrior” role at 27%.

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      Yeah, maybe a poll on whether people who went stealth did only Thieves Guild or Dark Brotherhood or did both. I imagine very few people had sneaky characters who did only one of the two.

    • Brun says:

      Indeed. I did both, since I built my Bowsniper as a Slayer of Men. But the Theives guild quest boosts skills that are good for infiltration and those are essential to finding your marks, or good firing positions.

    • SurprisedMan says:

      I don’t know. I’ve like to play lovable rogues. So thieves guild all the way, for me. But sadly they aren’t so lovable in Skyrim. When I run the place, things’ll be different.

    • Hidden_7 says:

      Holy smokes, I know right? The difference between the character of the Thieves Guild between Oblivion and Skyrim is striking. The Cyrodiil Thieves Guilds are a bunch of lovable rogue Robin Hood types who are for much of the game involved in a light-hearted feud with a grumpy Imperial Officer. The Skyrim Thieves Guild are a bunch of thugs with ties to organized crime that is absolutely choking a city, has your first task be shaking down local businesses, and much of the storyline is about petty and vicious backstabbing and power grabs.

      That being said, I warmed to it pretty quickly. It’s nice, for a change, to have the nature of the Thieves Guild really put front and centre and not sugar coated. These are a group of professional criminals who steal for a living. There’s nothing particularly noble about them, and if they don’t steal from the poor, it’s because the poor have nothing worth stealing.

      Also, having the guy who played Garrett voicing an important member of the guild, doing a similar, but not too similar voice, was a masterstroke, I thought.

  23. Drinking with Skeletons says:

    Maybe a poll on where the next Elder Scrolls game will be set? In Oblivion there were conversations between NPCs about trouble brewing in Summerset Isle and Skyrim, and both of those feature pretty strongly in Skyrim (one more than the other, admittedly, but the Thalmor are definitely a presence).

    Development time for these games being what they are, I can’t imagine they don’t already know where the next game will take place, even if they focus on Fallout or something else next. This could be like a time capsule and we could see whether we were right!

    • Ian says:

      After all the stuff in this game, I’d like something to do with explaining what the crikey happened to the dwarves.

      Poor old Falmer. :(

    • brulleks says:

      I want to go to Elsweyr. Why can’t it ever be Elsweyr?

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      The falmer are the ice elves, the dwemer are/were the dwarves. If you mean the dwemer, I think it’s explained in detail in Morrowind (never got very far in it, so I don’t know). There are some pretty specific allusions to it in Skyrim if you talk to the right people, and one guy actually spells it out for you (you may need to be the archmage to get the quest, and it’s fairly long, tedious, and doesn’t have much material reward). I think it also sheds a little light, although not much, on the otherwise inscrutable events of the College of Winterhold plot.

      If you mean the falmer, yeah, I’d like to know more about those weird (and surprisingly tough) little bastards. Generic goblins they aint.

    • Zealuu says:

      The disappearance of the dwemer/dwarves was pretty thoroughly covered in Morrowind, unless some part of Skyrim reveals all that to be lies.

      Hmph, someone beat me to it with a much more verbose response. It’s all on UESP anyway.

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      @Brulleck: Elsweyr is currently my #1 pick for both personal taste (land of cat people and drug trafficking!) and for likelihood, based on what I’ve noticed in Skyrim. Sure, Morrowind gets a lot of nods in and around Windhelm, due to the border and the refugees. But which province gets the most specific descriptions? Talk to members of the trade caravans and you’ll notice that Elsweyr gets talked up quite a bit. My #2 for likelihood is Hammerfell, based on the rather specific inclusion of the Alik’r as well as the decent number of descriptions from Redguard expats around Skyrim.

    • Unaco says:


      The Falmer used to be very similar to the other Mer races, with an affinity to magic etc. There’s was very much on the Frost/Ice/Cold side of things. They were the original inhabitants of Skyrim, but were pushed out (and possibly subject to genocide) by the Nords. It isn’t certain what happened to them after the Nords conquered Skyrim… they were wiped out, they turned into the Rieklings, or they interbred with, and were absorbed by, the other races of Mer… or, the theory that Skyrim puts forward, is that they were enslaved by the Dwemer. They were then bred for slavery, making them blind etc, hence their distance from the other Mer races in Skyrim’s depiction of them. They rose up, however, and had a war with the Dwemer, forcing them out of Skyrim. They still inhabit the ruins and whatever left by the Dwemer.

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      @Zealuu: Yeah, I’m definitely too wordy when I write. I’m trying to get better!

    • iucounu says:


      Whiterun. I can’t believe I’m still in Whiterun.

    • Wulf says:


      I want to go to Elsweyr, too.

      No, not because the Khajiit are cat people. Don’t be so incredibly shallow, people. Try out the Deserts of Anequina and you’ll see why. The thing is is that we haven’t had many African/Arabian-style fantasy games, have we? And that’s the setting of Elsweyr. Oh, the things you could do with that…

      Frankly, Obsidian working with Bethesda on something like that would probably be my dream game.

      Here’s an example of one thing: You could have a reality which is only accessible via a certain way.

      The player would find a beautiful city out in the middle of nowhere, in the desert, with flowing water and abundant plantlife. There they’d meet their love, and they’d go on a mad adventure with them, beneath the city would be a caverns with a dark mirror of the city above, hanging upside down. Clearing out the place you’d free the peoples from some ancient curse.

      You’d leave the city and your love tells you that s/he will catch up with you. But s/he never does. You go back there and it’s just sands, there is no city, no flowing waterfalls, no abundant plantlife, no breathtakingly beautiful towers of emerald. There’s nothing but the rolling dunes.

      You later find out that it was a sort of hallucination, brought on partly by the heat of the desert, but also by a form of plantlife there that gives off a gas that protects it from being munched on by prey animals.

      You can get back there, but the only way to do so is to inhale the stuff. The bad part of that is that you become addicted to it, and you see stuff that no one else can. Is it a hallucination? Is it real? Who can say. But you end up being branded as the Lost. A peoples who’ve fallen prey to that addiction. They’re considered insane because of what they can see that others can’t.

      But is it real? Is it? Well, that would be a story to wrap up another time.

      So much I could do with Elsweyr…

    • vecordae says:


      Spoiler: It was actually a pan-dimensional Isuzu dealership the whole time.

    • McCool says:

      The clues point to Hammerfell imo, which would be a great setting for an Elder Scrolls game. Actually any province would, the only one that holds no interest to me at all is Skyrim, and we’ve just done that,so the next one is bound to be somewhere exciting.

      About the Dwarves, we don’t know what happened to them. We have several theories, supported by scant evidence, but the Mystery of the Dwarves isn’t being solved any time soon. It being a mystery is a big part of Elder Scrolls lore.

    • Hidden_7 says:

      I thought Skyrim was going to be Summerset Isles from the talk in Oblivion, and I still think it’s going to be the next game, what with the heavy presence of Summerset politics in this one, and stories begging to be told. My second guess would be Elsewyr, because of the subtle hints in Skyrim. It both does and doesn’t have a big presence. The Khajiit are barely in this game, relegated to the roving caravans. But talk to those caravans and they talk about their home in great detail. It’s both giving some foreshadowed detail of a future location, while at the same time having the Khajiit take a backseat for this game so their presence feels missed and will be expected for the next one.

      I really don’t think we’ll see Hammerfell, since we’ve already had two games set in Hammerfell, both Daggerfall and the spin off eponymous adventure game.

      My personal pick for next one would be Black Marsh. We know so little about it, or the Argonian people, I feel like it’s been the least explored province so far. Room for a really different and exciting world to explore, and a pretty out there culture that doesn’t quite so nicely conform to a real world one. Not that I dislike the Nords, vikings are cool, and my favorite part of Morrowind was Bloodmoon, but it’d be nice to see something a bit more hodgepodge and invented.

    • Stromko says:

      @McCool: There’s a book in-game, I believe it’s Battle of Red Mountain, that explicitly states what happened to the Dwemer. If you chalk that up to a case of ‘imperfect narrator’ (which is used a lot in the books I think), the supposed cause of the disappearance of the Dwemer is also replicated on a smaller scale by a member of the College of Winterhold, if you go through his entire long and spaced-out quest chain.

  24. Ian says:

    I’d wager that even a lot of the people who voted warrior, say, are still doing at least a bit of stealthing or wizarding.

    • Zelius says:

      That’s why I voted for the ambiguous answer. Sometimes I’m sneaking past things, sometimes I’m sniping things from a distance with a bow, sometimes I’m running in with two war axes, and sometimes I’m even conjuring fireballs!

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      With the new perk system and revised leveling mechanics, there’s more reward for specialists. My current character always keeps a bow on hand and tries to get sneak attacks off with it when possible, but that’s just common sense; he’s a warrior at heart.

  25. Freud says:

    Stealthy archer but I do throw the odd heal on myself. We all need a little bit of magic in our lives.

    Perks: Archery, Stealth, Light Armor, Smithing, Enchanting

  26. brulleks says:

    I’d be interested to know what difficulty level people were playing on. I started on the default and found the world seemed horribly unthreatening compared to Morrowind (Oblivion is not a fair comparison because of the terrible world-levelling in it), so put it up a notch after a couple of hours.

    It now feels a more satisfyingly dangerous environment, while no dungeon has ever proved impossible to progress through (I’ve only played about 28 hours so far, mind you).

    I still miss those moments of wandering into a dungeon in Morrowind, seeing some huge new kind of daedra or undead and scratching it mildly with an arrow before running the hell out again, though.

  27. pakoito says:

    Mages are again on the stronk side of the game again. Even tho I miss some fun spells like invisibility or open locks, the lockpicking minigame is quite easy this time and it’s quite difficult to run out of lockpicks unless you face a Master level lock.

    Destruction (electric) mage with Heavy Armor (no more casting penalties!), some points in Resto (extra manareg, mana efficient healing) and Single Hand (mace) to support and you have maximum armor, lots of mana, lots of mana regeneration and a second damage source.

    a.- Is he/she a mage? outburst them with electric and ward. When they have no mana they’ll come for melee hence they’re dead.
    b.- Beast/monster? magic backpedal.
    c.- Thug? Nuke him from afar, outheal him in melee (mace + heal).
    d.- Dragon? same as thug.

    Besides I’m a Dark Elf, so 50% fire resist makes Dragons more a chore than epic feat.

  28. jimangi says:

    Shouldn’t Assassins and thieves be in the same section?

  29. Drinking with Skeletons says:

    There are shouts useful for every build. Ice Form, for example, seems like it would be most useful for a mage character who needs to incapacitate enemies long enough for magicka to regen (since it increases enemy damage resistance and wears off after one hit against the enemy, it seems like it would be mostly useless for anyone using physical weapons). Throw Voice, on the other hand, is only useful for stealth builds.

  30. frenz0rz says:

    To be fair, if you’d had an option for ‘Battlemage’ I’d have chosen that, as my imperial character wears heavy armour but uses a 1h and destruction/restoration spells in the offhand. Given the choice between ‘Mage’ and ‘Warrior’, I picked Warrior simply because I’ve been doing the Companions questline with this hybrid character, and am likely saving the College of Winterhold questline for a pure mage character some time later on.

    I wonder if anyone else chose their poll option with a similar logic (e.g. a Mage/Thief or Warrior/Thief character), and therefore whether this poll is really that accurate an assessment of the RPS community?

  31. says:

    But if you combine Thieves & Assassins, which are pretty much the same thing in TES games…

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      To be fair, there’s huge overlap in the two skill sets. I imagine that, even in the real world, assassins and thieves do a lot of the same things.

    • Berzee says:

      I think he was talking like:

      Assassins = sneak through dungeons and get sneaky-attack damage

      Thieves = sell a city’s entire supply of baskets to the local fence

    • Orija says:

      The both of them wear dark clothes?

  32. PaulMorel says:

    I thought you should have included skills in your poll. “Mostly Warrior Stuff” isn’t necessarily descriptive of what people are actually doing. There was no option that described my Stealthy Archer, and I think that a lot of people are playing stealthy archers.

    The poll should be: What are your top 3 skills? Then I could put Sneak, Archery, Smithing …

    • Wulf says:

      I’d probably put: Werewolf, Hand-to-Hand, and Lockpicking.

      Except Werewolf is actually an ability, and Hand-to-Hand doesn’t technically exist.

  33. fwfulton says:

    I always keep a spell in my left hand and several Staffs in Lydia’s possession not to mention enchanted jewelry, and potions. So I consider my self and Lydia to be Magical Warriors

  34. iamaelephant says:

    Come on RPS, enough with the Skyrim posts. This is getting ridiculous.

    • mod the world says:

      It’s like the Deus Ex spam weeks again.

    • nFec says:

      I’m constantly reloading rps at the moment, just to see the next Skyrim post. :)

    • ACid says:

      Come on RPS, more of the Skyrim posts!
      I need them to survive through the day until I finally get home and play more Skyrim.

    • Dath says:

      More Skyrim posts! Need something to live on ’till I get home…

  35. Was Neurotic says:

    Spellsword for the ultimate win.

  36. GenBanks says:

    I’d like to stand up for those like myself who can’t label themselves into a definite category…

    A true adventurer should be adaptable, choosing the skill to use based on what the circumstance calls for. If I were to label myself ‘warrior’ or label myself ‘wizard’ I would limiting my ability to react to the world.

    Rather than a class, my most honed skills are: Light Armour, One Handed, Archery, Blocking, Restoration, Sneak, Smithing, Alchemy and Destruction.

    Perhaps the poll should have asked for the highest rank/most valued skill…

  37. uncleezno says:

    I registered to say that the game has been out for less than a week and a half, and you have spent more than four complete days playing it. That’s disturbing.

  38. Wulf says:

    I didn’t vote. Werewolf wasn’t an option.

    The thing is is that I don’t use any weapons at all, and if I’m not using werewolf form, I’m using my own two fists and nothing more. No enchanted weapons, no enchanted armour. Just me and my fists. I’m like some kind of mad, wandering lupine monk. If Skyrim won’t show me its identity then I’m damn well going to give it one by being weird in it.

    Often I’ll clear out a dungeon with a lupine surgical strike. Fun thing about the werewolf form: Its roar can send 95% of stuff fleeing in blind terror. This means that you can go into a dungeon, make a surgical strike at a target, and leave everyone else alive. As a werewolf I’m probably less bloodthirsty and cause less death than the vast majority of RPS folks. I appreciate the irony.

    Hand-to-hand stacking bugs and werewolf bugs do make my life a little easier, but it’s still no picnic and it’s a far, far more difficult game. I noticed from testing out another savegame that the game becomes much easier if you’re a mage, or if you have a bow, it’s even easier if you just have a big sword. So I suppose I’m doing the ‘True Nord’ thing and taking on fights in the most ridiculous way possible.

    Suffice it to say, I’m probably the only one playing Skyrim like this, so I’m likely in a demographic all of my own.

  39. Wulf says:

    I want to see the other two werewolf ‘shouts,’ personally. I’ve heard that there are two more that are unlockable, and the one that my werewolf has so far–the fear roar–is probably the most entertaining ability I’ve seen.

    It’s kind of ridiculous that there’s an ability that can fear an ENTIRE town if you stand in the middle of it and use it. I feared 70% of Whiterun in one go, once. The radius of it is ridiculous. And it also allows me to trivialise dungeons without killing people or stealthing.

  40. Clavus says:

    I’m a warrior, wizard, assassin AND a thief. What was a supposed to vote??

  41. MuscleHorse says:

    Maybe quite a tame idea for a poll, but I’m quite interested to see whether people bother with horses. I bought one fairly early on and the thing kept getting involved in fights and died within an hour. Add that to the fact that I only saw a slight increase in speed I can’t imagine many people sticking with theirs.

    It did my heart good to see ‘Muscle Horse’s Horse’, mind.

    • Wulf says:

      Werewolf running is faster than horses. By about a magnitude of 10 over the fastest horse is, what I believe, a modder found out.

      Though I did steal a horse, once. But mostly that had to do with the fact that it was part of a quest, and I absolutely despise a number of people in Riften, including Louis (the name of the guy who sent me on that quest).

      Seriously horrible people in Riften. And if Maven doesn’t stop bugging that bloke of the root (Argonian) then I swear I’m going to maul her. :|

      Also, one bit of praise I absolutely must give Bethesda with Skyrim: The Argonians and Khajiit have incredible voices this time around. In Oblivion I just found them annoying, and the Argonians and Khajiit sounded exactly alike. It was a bit depressing.

      Skyrim, however? I could sit and listen to them.

      It makes me wish that there were more important Argonians and Khajiit. They get the best voice work of all, this time around.

    • Brun says:


      Pretty sure I detected Mass Effect’s very own Garrus Vakarian as the voice of many of the Argonian characters.

    • Lyndon says:

      If you’re rocking robes or light armor Horses are useless cause your base movement is pretty speedy, and the constant getting off your horse to fight stuff, then getting back on to fight stuff means the speed increase is negligible.

      But if you’re wearing heavy armor then they’re totally necessary cause you move so damn slow.

  42. dogsolitude_uk says:

    I’m a sneaky magick cat that likes nicking shiny things and setting fire to enemies.

    Next time round (or sooner if I can find a way of not getting save games mixed up) I’ll be a huge Nordic axe-weilding arcane blacksmith.

    I love this game (despite the lack of ability to name save games, keep notes in the journal and the ruddy interface in general).

  43. Metonymy says:

    Just like Fallout 3 and NV, I never use companions since they are massive idiots, and are not strictly required for success.

    As others have mentioned, BS and Enchant allow weapons to scale impressively, even from the start of the game, and the poisons from Alch are strong too. Magic works fine, you just can’t play the Doomguy and expect to win. You have to stab-stab a bit, use stuns, and non-destro fields are pretty important. Stealth is probably the easiest way to play, provided that you are patient. You can’t fight 4 guys at once without your stealth damage bonus.

    The only thing I haven’t enjoyed so far is that certain abilities like pickpocket or speech are pretty useless, and even lockpicking is very meh. It levels you, without giving much benefit at all. All of these skills just give you money, which is something you can get a hundred different ways.

    • Brun says:

      Is there even a magical alternative to lockpicking like there was in Oblivion? Or is the only way to open locks in Skyrim to use picks?

    • Metonymy says:

      No, not that I’m aware of. No unlock spell. You temporarily get a skeleton key during a thieves guild quest, so it’s better to never finish that quest. The skeleton key doesn’t work on the hardest lock types, and unlocking those without skill/perks takes about 10-15 lockpicks.

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      Actually, there is a standing stone that provides a once-a-day open lock power; I believe it’s the Tower, though I can’t remember where it is without pulling up the in-game map.

      Also, I think you hit the nail-on-the-head regarding pure mage characters: it requires multiple schools to be viable. I wish I had fully realized it earlier on, as I’m not invested in Alteration nearly as much as I should be (one point in the Mage Armor perk gets you double effectiveness of the Oak/Stone/Ironflesh spells when not wearing armor!). If they raise the soft level cap with DLC, I think that mages will get the opportunity to shine at higher levels by heavily improving multiple magic schools, while melee-specced characters will have to invest in skills that they don’t rely on much for success (although they could more easily get the benefits of the kind-of-iffy Speech tree).

  44. Inglourious Badger says:

    Can we do a as spoiler free as possible “What’s been your favourite quest?” poll, so I can go play the ones I’ve missed. But spoiler free.

    i.e. my favourite has been the one that starts organically when you walk through the market in Markarth

    • GenBanks says:

      Ah yeah that’s a good one.
      Which reminds me, I love the one that starts off by getting into a drinking competition in Whiterun.

  45. caddyB says:

    I like how there isn’t so many daedra all around. I still miss my golden saints and winged twilights, though.

  46. shoot the rabbit says:

    Open master locked treasure chest and you find…

    26 gold.
    Hide Bracers.
    Minor Potion of Endurance.
    Leather straps.

  47. Interrobangin says:

    You should be disappointed with yourself for thinking warrior wouldn’t be the majority. How could you think it would be mage?

  48. geldonyetich says:

    Magic is pathetically gimped at higher levels in Skyrim because crafting makes it pretty much completely obsolete.

    Weapon use:
    * Smithing can increase a weapon’s damage severalfold.
    * Enchanting can enhance weaponry further as well as boosting smithing and alchemy.
    * Alchemy can make smithing and enchanting even more effective.

    Magic use:
    * Smithing does not affect magic.
    * Alchemical potions can produce temporary increases in spell effectiveness.
    * Enchanting just reduces the cost of magicka involved in casting from that school. (Or increases magicka pools and regeneration rate.)

    When I was leveling up, I was torn between taking Destruction or Archery – two means of establishing the same thing of damaging the enemy. No longer. I’m currently doing about 450 damage per arrow with +100% archery damage perk, my legendary (~250 smithing x 2 enhanced) glass bow, and four +44% bow damage enchanted armor. My archery is not maxed: it can go even higher.

    • vexis58 says:

      I wish this was made more clear earlier in the game so I wouldn’t have wasted so many perks on it. Add to all of that the fact that you cannot get sneak damage bonuses from spellcasting.

      I focused mostly on destruction magic in the early game, having the outlook of “why use Archery at all, if I’m casting spells for my ranged damage?” But the higher level I got, the more quickly I would run out of mana far before the thing I was fighting died. I was chugging potions, running up to swing my sword at that dragon, anything I had left.

      Suddenly I realized that I could use a bow to continue shooting the dragon from range after running out of mana, and since then I’ve switched to using my bow for almost all of my damage, and leveled up my smithing enough that my bow does twice as much damage as it did at base. At this point, I’m only using my destruction spells to stunlock very dangerous mobs, and I’m considering using the console to respec out of all of those destruction perks I took.

    • Necroscope says:

      Yeah it got me too. I was too busy putting points into archery, light armour and stealth to invest in alchemy, smithing and enchant until it was too late and I began playing the game like an MMO going out to mine nodes to level smithing etc which is when it gets boring, a chore.

    • geldonyetich says:

      At least utility spells get some use – healing self, casting light, summoning daedric lords, ect.

      But for pure offense/defense, weapons and armor is the way to go. I’ve mentioned the offense already. Defensively, I’ve already got over 300 armor class – better than ebony skin supported by the best perks – and I haven’t even taken a Light Armor perk yet.

    • Chaz says:

      Hmmm, I was going the mainly destruction and conjuration route with a spell caster, with sneaking and archery as seconds. Only level 20 at the moment and I’m still finding the destruction spells quite potent, dual casting is a given of course. Yes if you have multiple opponents then you can run your magica down fairly rapidly, even if like me you have leveled up your magica a good deal. It does help if you try and wear the cloth robes etc with the best magica boosts and regens. But yes the cost in magica of the more potent spells is a big problem, especially some of the more useful ones such as stoneflesh etc. By the time you’ve preped yourself up with a spell like that and then waited for your magica to recharge before going in, you’ve already wasted 10-15 seconds of its buff, making them too costly and impractical to use. It wouldn’t be so bad if magica potions were as abundant as the health potions, but they’re few and far between, as are the alchemy ingredients required to make good ones.

      However I’ll often have a companion with me like Lydia to tank and maybe conjure up an Atronach to take some of the aggro off me whilst I swap to a bow or conjured sword if I run low on magica, which does help to level the field some what in the more intense encounters. I am finding the sneak combined with the bow skills increasingly effective if I can get the drop on any enemies, often being able to one shot 2 or three guys with the 3x damage modifier before they know whats going on, or on larger beasts knocking their health down by about 2 thirds in one shot and then either finishing them off with another shot or a few spells.

      If I was playing as a pure destruction mage, then yes this game would be very hard. As a mage you definetely need conjuration as a main component in your arsenal, and a bit of back up from a companion doesn’t hurt either. Overall though the cost in magica of some of the spells could do with coming down a good deal or their duration and potentcy being increased, especially in the case of the alteration spells such as stoneflesh, which seem prohibitively expensive to cast.

      Next play through I’ll try a character with muscles, heavy armour and that can cleave folks in 2 with a greatsword, but for this play through I’m going to try and stick with my spell casting route. It is after all a “role” playing game, and part of the fun for me is going through it and trying to stay true to my character, rather than gaming the stats as it were and just going for the ultimo build.

    • geldonyetich says:

      >Only level 20 at the moment and I’m still finding the destruction spells quite potent

      That will change by the time you’re level 50. Although, if you kit yourself out in -100% mana cost reduction for destruction gear, I suppose you’ll be able to cast enough fireballs that it won’t particularly matter.

  49. vexis58 says:

    I found the poll really limiting. My character shoots things with her bow, fires off destruction spells after the enemies have seen her, then switches to a sword when she runs out of mana in melee range. She sneaks around between combat, has assassinated one person, and spends her spare time making potions and improving her weapons and armor back in town. And collecting books.

    She’s at least done the intro quests to become a basic member of most of the various guilds, but I’ve been too busy trying to keep my stupidly laid-out quest log from being swamped with informationless misc sidequests to worry about getting very far in any of those chains.

    In a game that lets you do EVERYTHING at the same time, I don’t see why you’d want to limit yourself to only one of those things. I haven’t really been using very many of the “warrior” skills (I think I’ve only blocked a few times accidentally when I forgot to equip a spell to my offhand, and only worn heavy armor when it had a really nice alchemy-buffing enchant on it for some reason) but that doesn’t mean I’ve focused enough in the other stuff to call myself a “mage” or a “thief”.

  50. etho says:

    Been a moderately wicked assassin/thief. Archery for my primary combat method, switching to a firebolt/dagger combo if things get to cozy for ranged. Finished up the Dark Brotherhood quests and the Thieves Guild. Now I’m going around doing quests for Daedric Princes and idly hunting for those spiffy dragonlord masks. I’ve started the main quest, but it’s sitting quietly on the back burner for the time being. I got to the point where I have free access to shouts and there are dragons marauding about the countryside, but I don’t really know why yet. I’m busy. There’s booty to steal and demon lords to appease!