I’ve been what I would consider a gamer for about 28 years now. Considering that I’m 33, that’s… well, that’s a lifetime of gaming. I’ve played all genres, enjoying something from all of them. I’m beginning to think I might be losing my patience for some games, though… and Skyrim is a prime example.
I rented Skyrim instead of buying it, because most games are at least $60 and it was no exception. I have far too many games that I’ve purchased, played for an hour, and then shelved. I don’t necessarily have a collection as much as I have a bunch of regrets that will fit neatly into green DVD cases. Skyrim is the reason I reactivated my GameFly account, too. See, I knew I wanted to play it, but I didn’t know if I’d want to keep playing it. I’ve never played Oblivion, so I wasn’t sure what I was getting into.
I popped the disc in, giddy that I got it so quickly after release. I first became bored as I was making a character. I honestly don’t remember a single thing about that section of the game, because I wanted to get right to the action. Loaded up, looked around, and I have to say — the game is amazingly beautiful. This is one stunningly gorgeous game.
That’s… pretty much the nicest thing I can say.
I played for about an hour that first time, until I finally quit out of boredom. I’d read to expect a somewhat slow start, and I did, but that didn’t help to soothe the pain I was feeling. An hour into the game, and I was not a hero. I wasn’t much of anything. I had passed my time in the game picking up everything that I could find. It’s a problem I have, I’ll admit… I never know when I might need something, you see. I did the same thing in Fallout 3 and apparently it’s just one of those OCD things that I do. I’ve never actually be diagnosed with OCD, but… come on, who else picked up everything they could? If you did, please let me know… we might need to start a support group.
I resolved after that first hour that I was done. No more Skyrim for me. It just wasn’t my kind of game. The internet had other plans, though; everything I read had something to do with what a great game everyone thought it was. If it wasn’t a legit news story it was a meme about getting an arrow to the knee. Skyrim was inescapable. I thought to myself that maybe I just didn’t give it enough time. I decided to try it again… to give it one more try.
It was no use.
I was no badass… I was running around with the contents of a pantry.
Fear the mighty warrior, armed with a massive array of vegetables, spoons, and bowls!
I never even killed a dragon, which I’m given to understand at some point becomes such a regular occurrence that it’s not even a big deal anymore, it’s just a thing you do – the Skyrim equivalent of checking your Twitter feed.
As bad as it sounds, I’m thinking that I might have to turn in my gamer card. I seem to be the person that didn’t think that the game was a shred of fun. I keep reading and being told “You have to wait! It gets really good!” Hmm. How can I put this? Fuck that. I play games to have entertaining experiences, and as a husband and father, I don’t have all weekend to play Skyrim and eat pizza rolls. I gots shit to do, you know? I can stand for a movie to take a little while to get started; we’re talking about a 2-3 hour experience, there. I played Skyrim for a total of just over 2 hours and managed to A) kill a chicken and have an entire village come down on me with the wrath of Old Testament God, and B) not give a single shit about anything they wanted me to do in the game.
Am I doing it wrong? I feel like I must have been. It seems to me that if every other gamer in the world is enamored with this game to the point that it must be something that I didn’t get. I’ve since returned the game and have been send Portal 2, which is — I’ll just ballpark this figure here — roughly 6,000 times more enjoyable. I still have that nagging feeling that I didn’t give it enough time. That I should have cheerfully waded through the boring as hell beginning, somehow earning the right to access content that was fun. I thought about it so much that I’ve considered ordering the game from Amazon, so that I’d force myself to play it.
So what am I missing here? If you’ve played Skyrim and enjoyed it, please feel free to key me in on what it is that you found fun about the game, and how long you had to play it to reach that point. If you’re like me and didn’t think it was fun in the slightest, let me know… because I think I’m the only person on Earth that feels that way!