Thursday, August 09, 2012

TheAssailant Reviews: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim: Dawnguard

Note: This review will be split between the main game and the Dawnguard DLC. For the main game, click here.

After beating a majority of Skyrim, I shelved it because I had lost interest and didn't have much else to do. And so I patiently waited for the Dawnguard DLC, and bought it almost immediately and began to play it. Though it's still Skyrim, this DLC brings a lot of its own flavor, something I'm used to seeing in the Fallout DLCs (I never played the Oblivion DLCs, but I should get around to doing that soon). Unfortunately, it also leaves a lot to be desired.


Dawnguard is still very much Skyrim and nothing major has changed except for the expansion of the Vampires. Part of the reason I began to dislike Oblivion was because my character gained Vampirism due to my ignorance and no one warning me that Elder Scrolls vampires will literally die in the sun. Though the disadvantages of being a vampire still exist in Skyrim, I was lucky because I was a werewolf, and werewolves are immune to diseases.

Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy,
But I'm a vampire, so join me, maybe?
Additionally, it added perk trees for both Vampires and Werewolves, allowing the player's alternate form to gain attack bonuses and other bonuses. I transformed into a werewolf, and began extending my bloodlust to gain perks (devouring enemies is how you gain perks as a werewolf). I traveled from Riften and went across the map, all the way to Markarth (which is across the entire map, long-ways).

There are a few new weapons, such as the Crossbow which I didn't like using, and Auriel's Bow which, if you play the Dawnguard quest, you'll find is quite a badass weapon if you're using the right ammo. It also adds two new classes of dragons for you to fight and have your ass handed to you for thinking you were ready for them.


It seems Bethesda was too tempted to not reference a certain series of books featuring sparkling vampires in High School and their competition with werewolves (just as I was too tempted to not reference Carly Rae Jepsen). As you may have noticed, Skyrim has both werewolves and vampires, and playing Dawnguard as a werewolf gets you some condescending remarks about being "filthy," like after you rescue the Vampire Lord's daughter and bring her home safely. I was given the offer to renounce my werewolfness and become a vampire as my reward. "To hell with that" I said and booked it out of there.

"I didn't choose the thug life, the thug life chose me."
Luckily, the Vampiress you rescued has daddy issues and comes to you for help in stopping her father (which made me regret marrying Aela before the DLC came out). Turns out she doesn't agree with her father's plans to create eternal darkness so vampires could roam around and do vampirey things as they please. But don't think you're out of the clear, later on she'll also tempt you into becoming a vampire (which you can get out of through compromise, luckily). You'll find a wonderfully huge new place to play around and kill things in and by the time you're done you'll be begging for more. Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be much more than that.


Do I think Dawnguard is worth the $20 I spent on it? Most likely not. While there was a lot here, I feel as though I've gotten more from Fallout DLC, which I should remind everyone is only $10. However, what is here is still a great addition to an already great game. If you were to start a new save, all the new additions that Dawnguard brings could be put to much better use in the fight against Alduin or one of the other major side-quests in Skyrim. It's definitely great, but if you can wait for a potential price drop or sale on this DLC, I say you should. Perhaps it's because I had already beaten the game, but it feels as if there was more they should have added, but didn't.

It might be better worth the price if you decided to also become a badass vampire.

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