Skyrim DLC: What I want and what I don’t want to see!
Recently, Todd Howard gave the keynote address at the DICE event and amongst that presentation, was a video showing off what Bethesda employees got up to during the Bethesda Game Jam, where they could add ANYTHING they wanted to Skyrim within that week. You can see the keynote address containing the game jam here. This video has re-sparked the debate about what is to come in terms of DLC for the epic RPG, what people want and what people do not want to see. And I’ll start with what I want to see:
Build your own settlement
In the game jam video above, we see that one dev created a house that you could build (complete with skeleton butler) and while it doesn’t really go into detail as to what it exactly constituted, it is a direction I’d like to see taken for Skyrim DLC. However, I’d like to see the idea pushed even further by being able to found your own settlement. Ideally, something like Raven Rock on Solstheim in the Bloodmoon expansion for Morrowind, or the Great House compounds you can buy in the vanilla game.
There are a number of things that can be done with this idea, like offering multiple locations (there are plenty of nice spots of free land) to choose from to found your settlement, while only being able to pick one of them. And if not that, what about taking over one of the smaller towns already found in Skyrim and help them to expand? A variety of building options and methods of expansion could be included, to provide more freedom in how a player grows their settlement.
Want a more humble manor for your residence or a great stone castle instead? Pay experienced artisans to move to your town and set up shop? Will you protect the settlement by paying for walls, or allow the wilderness of Skyrim to creep in? The possibilities are endless. A chain of quests could also be added for the settlement as it grows, perhaps in part tied in with the Radiant quest system, something akin to Raven Rock as I mentioned earlier would do nicely.
Wrapping up the Main Storylines
I may have mentioned this in my review of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, but the way the civil war and main quests conclude left me very unsatisfied and so this is one thing I’d like to see built upon via DLC. How can this be done? A good start would be people recognizing your accomplishments (Yeah, definitely not DLC factor on its own). Things like additional quests for the civil war, after you’ve won, leading up to and perhaps beyond your chosen benefactor becoming High King of Skyrim.
Defeating Alduin the World Eater in the main quest seems entirely pointless as it is now. All of about three people in Skyrim even know/care that you won and dragons are still plentiful, razing the country side as they did before. Lets make the dragon hunting quests actually have an impact on the game by reducing the number of dragons that are encountered every time you slay one at its tomb? Some epic armour wouldn’t go astray either.
Expanding the Factions
Really, this following point could apply to a lot of the ingame factions presently, but I do have one in mind specifically; the Blades. This faction are relatively important to the events of Skyrim and while you do get to recruit people (a max of three), I’d like to see it expanded further. Post-main quest victory, the option to recruit more members in the Blades to rebuild them would be welcome, as well as being able to trick out the Sky Haven temple, or even start up another base somewhere in Skyrim (perhaps after say a Thalmor raid).
But perhaps you don’t like the Blades, nor did you support them during the main quest. What then? Perhaps the birth of a new cult worshipping dragons and the Dovakhiin is in order. Maybe it is an offshoot of the Way of the Voice, or something new entirely but this cult would be the perfect counterpart to the above. We’ve slaughtered cults in the past (Mythic Dawn), but joining and actively helping one is new ground. Both expanding upon the Blades faction and adding in a new cult based faction could provide more conflict with the Aldmeri Dominion too and who doesn’t want more snooty Altmer to smack with your chosen object of murder?
Expansions for previous The Elder Scrolls titles have included entirely new locations for the player to explore. In Morrowind, you were treated to not one but two in Tribunal (which allowed the player to explore Mournhold, the capital of Morrowind) and Bloodmoon (the island of Solstheim). Bethesda followed suit in Oblivion with the Shivering Isles expansion, transporting the player to the Daedric realm of Sheogorath resplendent with all the chaos and madness you’d expect from that particular Daedric prince.
So it goes without saying that this is an avenue that I’d like to be explored and it probably will (going on past form). But where? It is well known by now that the PC version of Skyrim also included the partially modelled provinces of Cyrodiil and Morrowind, both of which are right next door to Skyrim geographically speaking. While it was said that they were included for the benefit of modders, expansions involving either place wasn’t exactly ruled out either in the process.
Now I’m all sure you are salivating at the prospect of a return to the bland and generic Cyrodiil – wait, you aren’t? Good, because I can’t say I am ready for a return any time soon either! Morrowind on the other hand, remains a fan favourite. It has been a long two hundred plus years for the province the Dunmer call home and much has changed since we cut through swathes of enemies as the Nerevarine. So in essence, a trip back to Morrowind would be like returning to a place of familiarity, with a healthy dose of new to go with it.
What other locations would I like to see potentially as part of an expansion? Solstheim (for similar reasons to Morrowind) as well as High Rock or Hammerfell due to also bordering the province of Skyrim. No Daedric realms though please, I just can’t see any of the other princes providing a realm quite as interesting as Sheogorath’s!