Thursday, 30 June 2016

Skyrim: Dragonborn "D"

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

High in the mountains, at the shrine of Azura, we encounter the Dragonslayer and dragonborn, Dragur the Devourer. Was that enough "D"s for you? He is the easiest of the targets thus far since basically Einer and I out shouted him off a cliff. You'd think the bounty hunter army would have heard that but nope. They were nowhere to be seen.


That's because they were gathering at Bleakfalls Temple, knowing we'd be there to hunt the next guy - Deyravale the Paladin. Once again I left Einer and the sisters to handle the assassins while I forged ahead through the regular dungeon spawn. It didn't matter since they all caught up to me by the time I reach Deyravale at the end of the cavern though. This guy was an absolute tank, and required a significant number of backstabs (with a 900 damage weapon) to finally be put to rest.

I guess this is my favorite position. ;P

Next was Endur the Acceptable who came a close second for easiest target since he was so... accepting of his fate. He had a nice mask which Einer took for his own. The last Dragonslayer, Harrian Burndar, a flame based dragonborn, hid in Moss Mother Cavern. Due to the difficult and bugged environment which sent into "swimming mode" 90% of the time, it was up to my allies to deal with him. He downed the girls again and came close to slaying Einar but was beaten to the punch as Einar ran him through. It's the Death Mountain training man. I bet he never experienced ultra skeletons. :P

These two have a low survival rating...

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Skyrim: Moving Target

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

My training is interrupted when a bunch of bounty hunters come wandering into Morvunskar, and while Einer easily dispatches them the notes in their packs clearly illustrate that I'm now the target of the Sinister Seven (Prepare to Die), a band of deadly assassins who again I assume work for either the Empire, the Dragonslayers or both. This prompts me to continue my own assassination missions, leaving Njada under Sanguine's protective care.

Einer and I rejoin Aurora and Twilight at a small inn where they tracked down the next Dragonslayer, a khajiit named Rolan Nightkiller. The extremely agile, life stealing bastard manages to down Twilight before being Einer kills him via shouting him through a wall. From his correspondence we learn the location of another target, hiding in a tomb where we travel to post haste.

Khajiit's all share the same weakness... their tail! :P

There we are met by more assassins and a dragon! While my comrades deal with those I head on inside to face Arvale Staggerlow who turns out to be an easy opponent. The fight outside is not going well however as both girls are being downed multiple times to what seems to be an endless stream of assassins. Fortunately there is a small gap mid wave where we manage to escape into the mountains.

Also made gaps between some heads and shoulders.

Skyrim: Sanguine's Apprentice

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

I decided to make a detour to Fort Dawnguard to let them know of Strogan's fate. While Einer tagged along, the sisters went off to seek out the next Dragonslayer. Would be a while before I rejoined them though, for at Fort Dawnguard I was informed that Njada was captured by vampires!? Vampires likely allied with the Dragonslayers methinks.

Not wasting any time Einer and I headed to Morvunskar to deal with the scum, easily annihilating the exterior guards. Someone had beaten us inside though, and was happily killing all the vampires and arch-death-omancers within, named... Sanguine. Wait. What? Yes, the Daedric Prince Sanguine was there killing stuff in person. Apparently it was his way of apologizing for that drinking prank so long ago, as he genuinely wanted to try increase my skills. That doesn't stop me from trying to punch him but he's immortal (as if striking air) as usual.

In the depths of the place we find Njada, tied up. I hesitate trying to free her since she might secretly already be a vampire. While deciding, Sanguine quietly mentions "this would be a great opportunity to practice your destruction magic!" He has a point. Especially since the Arbiter's Helm lets me cast shock indefinitely, and I have a target who can both take the punishment and won't fight back... so...

Time to level up! (Lev 57)!
(Sanguine is super effective!)

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Skyrim: The Dragonslayers

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Since my band was near Hollow Tooth ruins, I decided to revisit the ghost, Ilfhild Merilion and got her to join the party. She advised us that enemies of the Blades, known as "the Dragonslayers", have begun showing up to hunt dragons and tasks me with slaying them to find their secret agenda. What? There's really nothing to say these guys are evil, so I'll just assume that they work for the Imperials. Yeah. That'll do. Time to hunt! 

First up is Golothan Holyfist, peacefully mining away in a remote hole in the ground. When confronted he proves to be a very troublesome foe, downing both Aurora and Twilight before I can behead him. Next is Darkeye, a marksman exploring some ruins. This guy is -really- tough, primarily due to his freeze shot ability.

Thirty seconds on ice - not fun!

The sisters are downed again, and Ilfhild is destroyed before I can thaw out and stun lock the bastard. After running him through I decide to return to Death Mountain and recruit Einer the warrior before hunting the next target: Cerion Drainfang. This adversary has absolutely no chance since it turns out Einer is dragonborn too. As it turns out, all the followers available at Death Mountain are.

Monday, 27 June 2016

Skyrim: Nine Lives

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

I had returned to Whiterun to unload loot from the undead invasion and to check on the town when I met the Khajiit jester, Strogan, who wanted assistance in hunting a vampire. Seems like the Dawnguard accept just about anyone these days. Also found two gorgeous Blades members, Aurora and Twilight (guess I'm not the last one of those either) who asked my help in finding their dad at Helgen. Obviously I chose to help them first.

Whatever you say, blondie.

Helgen's never really been the same since my first visit, the ruins only inhabited by random bandits these days. One of them managed to plant an axe into Aurora's face which killed her instantly. More interesting is that because of their "system" I found I could actually respawn her, albeit a little differently. While an exact clone of the one that died is still dead, this actually increases both the girls longevity by literally having nine lives (more like 16 I think). For the purposes of this journal I'll just say they are "downed" instead of killed, until they actually are.

Finding their father's corpse completed the quest, and so we moved on to vampire hunting for Strogan. The silly cat stepped on a trip wire at the entrance of the lair and died from a simple rock foll trap. A large stash of skooma on his person probably hinted as to why that was. Unlike the Blades sisters though, he wasn't coming back and we had to execute the vampire ourselves.

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Skyrim: Zombie Horde

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

It so happened that the ruins where I executed the Thalmor convict stood over an underground castle. A haunted one with a friendly ghost, Ilfhild Merilion (not Casper). She informed me the dead stirred once more at Death Mountain so I raced back there and took the first available companion I could find in the local inn, a warrior named Tenshi.

And then... the draugr invasion began! This is nowhere near as scary as it should have been though, mainly because of where I was. As soon as the ever growing horde would spawn, all the daedric guards and dragons would leap into action. I just took a back seat during the whole thing and enjoyed the fireworks!

Those flames are so pretty!

Eventually all ten waves of zombies were slain without my active participation, and there was only one friendly lost in the whole thing: Tenshi, who got Fus Ro Dah-ed by a draugr deathlord off the side of the flying mountain. It was ridiculous but very entertaining.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Skyrim: Southern Justice

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

I was surprised as I watched the giant man, Captain Guomundr, come across the bone bridge up to Death Mountain. Apparently he had news dire enough to come seek me out: the Thalmor had a new base at the Southern border, and had begun killing mead merchants crossing the border. Knowing how much Nords like their drink, I was determined to put an end to them. Not because I like mead. I just like killing Thalmor.

Right in the... kidney?

A snow storm concealed our approach to the large camp, giving me the opportunity to pick off a few strays before rushing into melee. They were not as tough as the ultra skeletons and were cut down with ease. There were lots of them though, and mostly archers. Guomundr took on the Thalmor commander while I handled the rest. In the end I had to handle him too as he had electrocuted Guomundr to death!

I found a note indicating that the Thalmor were actually after a criminal in the nearby Hollow Tooth ruins. Usually this would make him my ally, but he opts for "it's complicated" and attacks out right. It's probably better this way as this was the sure method to not let more Thalmor troops come traipsing into the region on the pretense of justice.

Justice is absolute.

Skyrim: The First Key

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Our exploration escape route led to a tower full of forsworn led by a hagraven, and due to some bad timing with a closing portcullis Captain Ghoragdag was impaled to death by the closing gate. The remaining foes weren't a match for Nerelia and myself though. We even cleared another tunnel with a large (ultra) skeleton contigent, where Nerelia survived by using her summoned frost atronarch as a shield. Clever girl.

"Yes I am."

Soon we were back at the exterior of Death Mountain and new areas were open to me now, a tavern, an inn, and a bath house, full of new potential followers but I still couldn't open the very first door of the quest due to not having the first key. Eventually I gave up and looked on the map where I should go next, when I happened to hover over "Nerelia House", where I got the horse Red Shadow. Oh! That's where you live.

Deciding that someone should survive this tale I opted to take Nerelia home and released her from my service. She said I could keep the horse though. Also in her basement I found key #1. LOL! I raced back to Death Mountain and opened the mysterious chamber only to find a smallish zone with some left over undead and the next key which opened that gate I had jumped over previously.

No matter, Death Mountain was now cleared!

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Skyrim: There can be more than One

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

After killing the boss early, I briefly stopped at Adal Matar to pick up Captain Ghoragdag (good work on guarding the two orcs btw lol), and informed Braga Clearwater of her brother's valiant death, inviting her to move anywhere else instead of living on a lonely frozen mountain. She refused. Respecting her choice, Ghoragdag and I headed right back up to Death Mountain to find ways into the many other chambers I didn't have access to yet.

This time I found a fence that I could whirlwind sprint over (with Ghoragdag being more practical just climbing over I guess), and found another key in a shrine that gave us access to "The step of giants" - an odd tunnel that housed giant spiders and three of the big guys who normally have mammoths. Sniped the lot of them and found a key... to the tower I broke into earlier? Lol.

We mangle giants.

Fortunately it also opened up a catacomb / prison area filled with draugr who for some reason had three hostages, a khajit, a nameless tortured lady and a chick named Nerelia who was the only one who wanted to get out of there so we took her along and soon discovered that she too was dragonborn!? She uses shouts. Well so do draugr, when you think about it but anyway...

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Skyrim: Going Down

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Behind that army was a passage which led to a large arena lined with 50 or so skeleton archers. Too bad for them I was a better sniper and they all died without ever detecting me. Then came a lair of charrus, followed by an army of Falmer led by dragon priests. The carnage was beautiful.

Die you mutated elves!

Finally I found the lair of the boss guy: Lord Garnad. His chamber was full of things that hurt a lot! Draugr amazon archers, dragon priests, whirly blade traps... I still out-potioned them all. Even Garnad himself who I happily executed while he begged for his life. He put up a decent fight though for someone being hit by a 900+ damage weapon. You didn't think I'd leave that behind in the bone dragon's chamber did you? :P

Dead like the dog he is.

Anyway, the final key was in a chest behind Garnad, and that led to a reward in the form of an Oblivion Sword and an Oblivion Crosier Staff. Pretty cool! The nearby exit put me at the very base of the floating mountain that happened to overlook a deep lake. I took the fastest way down. :)

Try this in real and it would probably be fatal.

Monday, 20 June 2016

Skyrim: Key to the Underworld

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Death Mountain was guarded by lots of Daedric guards (guys in Daedric armor, not Dremora), some with sabercat pets, and four dragons. All of whom were friendly. What? Yes I was surprised at this too. Unfortunately all points of access to the little town were locked, needing keys (my 100 lockpick skill is useless!). I couldn't make heads or tails of the clues for the first key so instead Bagamul and I just parkoured around a bit until we found a tower with an unlocked door. Finally we were getting somewhere!

There were hostile draugr inside but they were nowhere as tough as the skeletons outside, so my sword cut through them like butter. Higher up I found two more OP weapons, twin katanas of dragon slaying (base 600 damage), a "sexy" book and finally, a flaming urn with a key. Key #8? LOL.

I like books with big ... pictures!

The key gave us access to "the underworld" which for some reason was guarded by a handful of frost trolls (disappointing if you were expecting the sexy vampire version). Past them was a huge chamber, with a skeleton army AND a dracolich / bone dragon whose first move was to disarm my 900+ damage sword! >_<

Dealt with it first (with the twin katanas) and then used the Arbiter's Helm to terrify the undead army, earning Bagamul and I some free kills. Once the effect passed however, they all swarmed in and slew my orc ally viciously. Obviously, he was avenged mere minutes later.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Skyrim: Death Mountain

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Alas, there was no way to get to the floating fortress from that side of the mountain so Captain Gamli and I had to go under it, past a small Thalmor encampment that was busy under multiple dragon attack. The real threat came from the path leading up just on the other side in the form of... skeletons.

An army of them!

And if you thought my 900+ damage, upgraded oblivion sword was overpowered you would be DEAD WRONG. These skeletons could survive multiple hits of that weapon, and forced me to use more of those health pots I enjoy packing. Yes, they are ULTRA skeletons! It took awhile but eventually all of them (and the Thalmor) were destroyed. In the chaos I'm not sure what became of Gamli, but I was pretty certain he died as he was no longer following me.

Finally at the base of the long bone bridge near Kagrenzel, I found some remains and a cryptic note mentioning nine keys and some demon lord trapped in the mountain. At this point the adventurous Bagamul Clearwater, one of the orcs from Adal Matar, joined me - having shadowed me through the small war. I shrugged and figured he could handle himself so we crossed the bone bridge and found ourselves standing on... Death Mountain!

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Skyrim: A Nice View

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

On the climb up, my group found a little cave guarded by some skeletons. Not willing to be flanked by enemies while exploring, the Hunter and I decided to clear it quickly and boy was he good with his bow. He was one-shotting everything. Unfortunately for him, he never saw the pressure plate that triggered the roof-spike-gate trap which returned the favor. I sequestered his bow as my own.

It was a standard fare tomb though, with one dragon priest at the end. Still a quick mission, and despite being one man down we continued up the mountain. Next was rich mine which Captain Gamli helped me clear, followed by a small orc outpost, Adal Matar, inhabited only by two friendly siblings of the Clearwater clan who sheltered us for the cold night.

The next morning I instructed Captain Ghoragdag to stay with her kin as protection from, whatever the UFO was, while Gamli and I reached the edge of the cliff where we could get a good look it.

Wonder what that looked like alive...

Though not in the picture, dragons circled the strange, floating citadel. Yes. I definitely wanted to get up there!

Friday, 17 June 2016

Skyrim: Out of the Ordinary

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Our trip to Markarth was cut short by the fact that all the guards still were after me for slaying that wandering vamp in the streets (whose body was still lying there I might add, all these years later). Fortunately the Arbiter's helm also came with a special ability: Megaphoning his deep decree and scaring everyone away for a good amount of time. I used this to collect all the stuff in my home in that city and with Guomundr and Red Shadow's help (horsey), transported it all to Solitude.

In hind sight I should really just pay off the guards. That's what all this gold is for right? Anyway, once there I again studiously worked on blacksmithing, finding I could craft a most powerful weapon...

Totally not overpowered...

I soon received word from Njada that strange things were being seen on the Eastern border of the region, so I left Captain Guomundr there to watch over my stash in Solitude (the guy earned a break), and instead recruited Captain Gamli, Captain Ghoragdag and the Hunter to scout out the snowy, mountainous area. And boy did we find something out of the ordinary.

Thursday, 16 June 2016

Today I Smiled: The New

Yesterday I talked about Neverwinter Online: Alliances. Truth be told I've been playing NWO less as of late due to some hectic weeks at work. On one particularly stressful day I broke my usual rule of "not buying any computer games for myself" and splurged because retail therapy is a thing. Yep I went into EB and spent $31 bucks for four bargain bin games: Assassin's Creed Rogue, Assassin's Creed Unity, Watch Dogs and Call of Juarez: the Cartel.

While that's not too bad if I say so myself, I also have been receiving a bunch of really, really old games from a neighbor who has outgrown them. More than half don't work but I don't mind. You know I'll be putting up reviews for the ones that do somewhere down the track. Also cool to learn that Ultima Online is still going strong elsewhere. ;)

All that ties in somewhat with Izlain's "How to be a cheap ass gamer" NBI post, which is a good read on it's own. Remember - there are tons of free to play games out there too!

"The New" is also a Week 1 event for the NBI 2016, for which you can join the Discord here. Given that it's already half way through June you can tell I'm quite out of sync with it this year.  Still, my best "New" moment recently has come from the Skyrim Mod "The Forgotten City" which I just played through in my adventure journal. It is so well made I can't recommend it enough. Speaking of which, adventures in Skyrim will continue tomorrow!

That must be the best quest hook ever.

Last but not least I thought I'd put up the links of the "new" folk from the NBI - give them a look see if you get the chance. Let me know if I missed any and I'll add you to the list!

A to Zeo
Cookie Cutter Monks
I'm Not Squishy
Just East of West
Pleasant Gamer (hey... I remember you from last year :P)
Shadowz Gaming Blog
Wild Core Chronicle

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Neverwinter Online: Alliances are Great!

Taking a short break from the Skyrim adventure for a bit to talk about all the new stuff in my gaming sphere recently, the biggest of which is the latest module for Neverwinter: Alliances. Our little band is fortunate enough to be a gauntlet guild of the 13 guild strong Greycloak Alliance, and so far it's been a positive experience all around.

With 13 guilds it feels a little like Bleach... :P

Perks of an alliance include the Alliance Chat and the much larger pool of people to run things with (on top of the Legit Community). Being able to visit allied strongholds also open the doors to being able to buy items from their bases not yet sold in yours and having access to fully manned dragon run flights, more often as various holds get their free flights at different times. My favorite part though is the resource trading. My current behavior is to see what my guild needs and fill that, but any excess goes to allies that require said currencies, and it seems players from the other guilds are doing the same.

The actual alliance listing!

It's really uplifting to see our collective coffers grow via cross guild donation, leading to much faster advancement for all. Because of this I give the "Alliance" part of the alliances update a big thumbs up (obviously your mileage may vary depending on who you ally with)! They also made everything a campaign to help people see the "ladder" of things they need to do, and put some decent rewards behind some. You can read more about this at Shintar's Neverwinter Thoughts! :)

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Skyrim: Third Time's the Charm

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

I didn't bother to talk to anyone upon leaving the Lake house this time around. Instead I just suited up in the full Immaculate Dwarven Armor and marched right through the radiation hole (no need for potions with the full armor) to the Arbiter's dome. This time, he totally freaked out that I had his helmet as proof that he would die if he fought me.

We might have still  fought a little anyway.

He agreed that he would put an end to his law, to let the people live free. Yet he was unsure what would happen to me as it would be a time anomaly, with the events that led me there to begin with never happening. I might even become Jay Garrick (yeah, watching too much Flash on TV :P). I told him "You can't lock up the darkness" to do it. With a flash of light, I found myself standing before a statue. Of me.

Interesting likeness!

Cassia's brother was there too, saying he had just entered what he thought was ruins only to find a thriving city! In an amazing change, the whole cave roof had given way to the real sky above, and things worked out for almost everyone in town. They now know me as the hero who saved them seven years ago. Lol @ time travel right?

Not Metellus though. He was executed by the townsfolk and Maisi was freed. Some others left during the interim too. Only one sort of escaped any comeuppance: the shifty vendor. Before I left I made sure to pay him a visit in his shop. A short and violent one. Then I dragged his corpse into the undercroft to be skeever food. It worked for Metellus!

And so with the remaining people's cheers I reunited with Cassia and Captain Guomundr. The girl gave her thanks and headed down to stay in the city with her sibling, while I gave the Captain the cumbersome armor and left via the elevator (which has always been there instead of a hole I guess)  to unload the loot.

Monday, 13 June 2016

Skyrim: The Arbiter

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

I suspect you are the boss... the huge glowing circle kinda gives it away.

Fortunately the radiation didn't extend under the dome and inside waited a single man (possibly a dwemer): the Arbiter. Creator and enforcer of the Dwarves Law. He seemed pretty knowledgable about me too, about my affiliations, penchant for killing, stealing, and that I was from the future. With careful choices of responses I came close to convincing him to ending his law, showing that it was flawed since Metellus had outwitted him.

Alas, my greed got the better of me at the last prompt. Instead of saying "End your law and send me back to my time," I opted for "I'm not leaving empty handed."

His reply was simple: "Then you shall not leave at all."

The freak certainly enjoyed using lightning spells in combat but once he started failing his saving throws against my paralyzing bow he was screwed. I let him hobble around near the end, listening to him whimper about it being "Impossible". Then I took my sword and beheaded the f***er (you can tell he's an awesome bad guy to generate such hate!), and looted his neat helmet as my reward.

That explains his affinity with electricity.

Of course this means I had to potion my way back topside, where all the robots were torching everyone alive - again. I spotted Metellus running for the Lake house once more but this time decided to make a detour. Fortunately my amazing sneak skill let me slip past the angry robots and reach the burning body of the paranoid psycho to loot his piece of the Immaculate Dwarven Armor before shadowing back to the Lake house for take three.

Skyrim: Drinking Past the Pain

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Kinky. I mean. Jinkies. Like in Scooby Doo.

The key from the deep opened the locked room of the palace which contained one person: Maisi, the missing wife once thought to be skeever chow. Jarl Metellus had kept her up there and  doing all sorts of things for his own amusement. Now came a hard choice: If I freed the woman, or told her husband, then surely they would break the law by attacking the Jarl and everything would "end" once more.

I decided to leave her there and confront Metellus directly, but the old man laughed for he knew I could do nothing to him. Also, he let slip that since the Dwarven "Camera" if you will in that one room was broken, he worked out he could do whatever he liked there. Damn.

There was still another way to go though: Down into the radiated tunnels. The researchers had determined that if I assembled a full set of Immaculate Dwarven Armor it would protect me from the radiation, and I had all but one piece now (I'm very thorough when it comes to searching the dead). The unique chest piece was being worn by the paranoid psycho and there was no way to convince him to take it off. The guy even slept with it on (Yes I did an Edward Cullen and watched him while he slept, lol).

Despite him being a dick, I wasn't going to murder him just for that. Instead I opted to just enter the radiated chamber without it. Boy was that really painful, and I came near death constantly but finally I reached the dome at the bottom of that radioactive pit.


Don't forget, this is me. My standard loadout in any game must include over 100 healing potions, the stronger the better. I just drank my way past the pain, like all true heroes do.

Sunday, 12 June 2016

Skyrim: Keys in the Deep

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Since I screwed up previously, I decided to hunt down the missing people this time around, and found a trap door in one of the houses that led to a subset of tunnels which seemed to connect most of the central structures. In there I also found remains being eaten by a giant skeever who somehow managed to get the drop on me. In it's belly was a necklace that the Dunmer man recognized to be Maisi's, his wife. I guess she didn't find another way out after all.

Super sneaky for a big rat!

The other missing person was the crazy guy's brother who had left him a key and a not so obfuscated clue of looking where he would need to hold his breath. I jumped in the lake and found a submerged house that had a passage into an even deeper underwater cave. I really wish I remembered to learn or bring water breathing equipment, finding an air pocket was hectic. Eventually an exit led out of the water into a chamber with some very hungry Argonians.

If only more NPCs were smart enough to back down.

They were smart enough to let me pass to find the chest which was the "treasure" the crazy guy had been looking for all along. Inside wasn't treasure though. It was another key to a room in the palace. It was then that I realized I had overlooked one suspect...

Friday, 10 June 2016

Skyrim: Not part of the Solution

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

With proof now that the Dwarves Law is really a thing it was time to see who among the population could potentially screw everything up:
  • The angry dunmer whose wife supposedly found a way out of this place somehow.
  • The researchers who enjoy poking and prodding the ancient dwarf tech, convinced that the statue heads are actually watching everyone.
  • The Imperial engineer who has been tasked with destroying said statue heads.
  • The gay grocer and the paranoid psycho who sends him death threats.
  • The ex assassin, who is actively being hunted by others (that jump down the pipe).
  • The fisherman who longs to go axe-murdering bandits again.
  • A mischievous daughter who is tired of being locked up in the palace.
  • A skooma addict.
  • A pair of overworked smiths.
  • The crazy idiot who enjoys pestering everyone to help him find the treasure of his missing brother.
  • A shop keep who likes short changing his customers with bogus potions.
  • An uppity douche bag, next in line to be Jarl who actively treats everyone, including myself, as "peasants" and his terrified and abused girl friend.

Apparently the correct answer was: Me. Too many douche bags, I couldn't help myself. As soon as I killed that shifty, lying shop keep the whole place shook, and a booming voice declared "The many shall suffer for the sins of the one."

With that all the lights went off, and scary, end of times music began to play and all the dwarven robots activated and began torching everyone. Obviously my first instinct was to fight but I simply could not damage them. They couldn't hurt me either, but they certainly could rag doll me around the place effortlessly. In a short time everyone else started to burn.

Those robots are sooo angry!

That's when I noticed Jarl Metellus running for the Lake house (since I was in the lake at the time), so I decided to follow him. Sure enough, upon entering I witness the last part of his time spell where he disintegrates himself. Stepping back outside, everything has reset and is bright and happy with everyone alive once more.

Skyrim: Punching for Science!

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Since I can't explore the radiation filled caverns I decide to check out the abandoned palace, where one of the citizens had locked himself in awhile ago. Everyone is kind enough to tell me he was a necromancer, and given the number of caskets I had to climb just to get into the place there's no prizes in guessing what I found inside.

Undead burned corpses!

Turns out the necromancer just wanted answers on the Dwarves Law, and had turned to raising the dead to try get answers. Failing that, his journal suggested he was going to try use the "power source" at a higher floor. This proved to be foolish because a) there is a speech book from the people before Jarl Metellus' group just lying around and b) the power source was focused radiation, and the necromancer had killed himself.

The speech book is an interesting read. Apparently those people also knew of "the Dwarves Law", but since they never saw it in action the speaker concluded the only way to find out if it was a lie was to simply punch someone. For Science! Given the layout of the scorch marks, that triggered the end for them.

I knew all those ominous looking dwarven robots pretending to be statues are evil. Hrm, actually maybe not evil. More like: Just.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

Skyrim: The Forgotten City

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

And so the awesomeness begins.

Exiting the Lake house I am greeted by a bright and vibrant city. With people. Sure, not as many as other places, but it's a far cry from the dark death that I had just been in. Everyone directs me to see the Jarl, and everyone makes sure I know "the Dwarves Law" that rules this city:

"The many shall suffer for the sins of the one."

Which is very vague, but seems to keep everyone in check. Its also why there are no guards around. I let Jarl Metellus know that I'm from the future, and he charges me with preventing that outcome from happening, without letting anyone else know I'm from the future - as they might panic and break the Dwarves Law. He also notes that when he first arrived everything was dark and that there were lots of burned corpses around too.

The Jarl doesn't actually know what the outcome of breaking the law is, because he's managed to keep all his people (who all happen to be various types of undesirables) in check but its pretty clear that everything ties back to that.

My first task is recon, and since I'm more a doer than a talker I decide to head to some underground tunnels I saw earlier in the future (yes, isn't that an awesome sentence!?). The cave-in hadn't happened yet, but something else blocks my way:

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Skyrim: The Lakehouse

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Fortunately there was a deep enough pool to catch me at the base of the drop, and there didn't seem to be a way back up in the dark chamber I found myself in so I headed out the large double doors and found myself in a MASSIVE and almost pitch black cavern. It was a small city! A small, dead city inhabited only by a handful of skeevers feasting on the many charred corpses littering the streets and the spooky palace that had pressure plate activated lights that only illuminated the section you were in.

Why are empty halls scarier than ones with monsters...

Honestly this sort of unnerved me a bit. I was expecting Thalmor, or dwarven animuculi, not... nothing. It wasn't hard to find Cassia's brother. He was hanging by the neck from a dead tree in the center of town, a suicide note in his hand. He also looked ... old.

The note was one of regret, saying that "no matter what he tried, he couldn't help them - nor find a way out". He also advised that anyone reading it should also save themselves the trouble and just follow suit and kill themselves for there was no escape. Oh, and he mentioned to NEVER EVER GO NEAR THE LAKEHOUSE.

That's sort of the queue to "go to the lakehouse right?"

Inside the small shack that is "the lakehouse" is another note, this one written by Jarl Metellus. Apparently something went very wrong which caused a cataclysmic event. He tasks whoever is reading it to find out what happened and save them. With the last of his magic power and life force, Jarl Metellus had turned the Lake House into a portal back in time.

Now is a good time for you to watch the second trailer for this fantastic mod!

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Skyrim: Cassia's Request

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

While unloading all the junk from the sea monsters I found a crumpled parchment in my bag, a letter that was requesting me to help someone named Cassia find her missing brother. I figured it was about time I responded. In no time at all (thanks to fast travel) Captain Guomundr and I arrived at an ancient dwemer ruin whose entrance was behind a waterfall.

In it awaited Cassia, eager to meet the famous dragonborn. I wasn't too thrilled to learn that she and her brother were drafted into the Imperial army, but my mood brightened when I learned they were deserters. Anyway, the task was simple: enter the ruins and find her sibling.

And the only way in was in a large vertical drop.

Cassia had promised to wait right there, so she wasn't coming with me. I decided Guomundr should keep her company, in case it was a trap. Because everything screamed trap to me. Especially a large vertical drop. I couldn't chicken out now being the hero and all so with a deep breath, I jumped down the pipe.

Now is a great time to watch the awesome trailer for this mod and to mention it's one of my favourites so far! :)

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Skyrim: The Eternal One

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

A spark lit in Captain Guomundr's eyes after we slew the Leviathan. The giant finally told me of his little village that was destroyed by Iko-Turso "the Eternal one" and asked for my help in taking it down. Sure enough we found his sea shelf village in ruins, but I didn't need to be ready for a fight. Iko-Turso, a gigantic walrus, was already dead.

It just occurred to me how bad this thing would smell.

Camped nearby was an eye-patched wearing hunter who obviously beat us to the prize. I had actually seen him before on his steamship at Dawnstar but didn't pay him much mind since he had no conversation lines of note. Impressed with his skill I asked him for some hunting tips. This was his reply:


Guomundr was pleased with the result nonetheless, and helped me carry all the loot (heavy pieces of giant monsters) back to my house at Windhelm. I got a fright when Njada Stonearm walked out from around a corner too - I had totally forgotten she was here as my proxy. After celebrating with a home cooked meal it was time to head back out into the wilderness once more.

Skyrim: Bigger Fish to Fry

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

Captain Guomundr and I continued patrolling the coast, and found a large ship broken high up on the cliffs. Apparently this one was once manned by hunters who were bested by their prey - a massive ice wraith snake thing. With the high vantage point it turned out to be another easy snipe fest, but for a change upon slaying the beast Guomundr became more talkative.

We just killed three of them...

He mentions a Captain Gamli at Dawnstar who had it in for the critter, and when we visit the old guy he is pleased at hearing the beasts demise. He also ushers us to talk with an female orc Captain named Ghoragdag at Windhelm as she also had fish to fry. And boy was it a huge fish.

Guess it ate... dragons?

This one was actually a difficult fight as it started really deep in the ocean where by default, I cannot fight. Only after out swimming it (and asphyxiation) back to the surface was the only time I could start plugging arrows into the beast. It was by no means defenseless either as it could jump out of the water and bite!

Still, in the end it was dead and both Guomundr and I were not. I call that a victory.

Saturday, 4 June 2016

Skyrim: Monsters of the Northern Sea

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

After unloading the loot from at my estate in Solitude and practicing more smithing, I ventured into the Winking Skeever pub where a bunch of sailors were talking about great monsters in the Northern Sea. One of them, a sombre giant of a man named Captain Guomundr agreed to join me in hunting them. I even knew where to start, as I noticed new nearby islands when previously raiding the Thalmor Embassy.

A giant, talking, crab!

On the first isle we came across large mud crabs crawling along a ship wreck and one HUGE crustacean named Karkinos. The monster was very dangerous in melee so Guomundr and I switched to bows. It took a lot to penetrate the thick shell but with perseverance (and a lot of arrows) we finally killed it.

Nearby was a frozen iceberg full of frost atronarchs and "ice giants", who looked suspiciously exactly like frost atronarchs only twice the size. They made easy prey for sniping, but I couldn't shake the feeling I was being watched the whole time - even after slaying the last one. Then I saw it. The iceberg that wasn't an iceberg...

At least he's easy to hit!

Ymir, the Father of Ice Giants could easily pass for one of the smaller islands. At least that explained all the shipwrecks around him. Such a danger could not be allowed to live and so even more arrows were spent taking him down. Fortunately I think the sharks circling him actually prevented him from getting close, so he turned out to be an easy kill.

Thursday, 2 June 2016

Skyrim: Herecinde's End

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

The Embassy manor itself had fewer Thalmor than the other buildings which made it easy to clear the ground floor. It turns out they were strategically waiting in ambush on the second floor which caught me and Eydis off guard. With summoned daedra and atronarchs coming out of thin air Eydis got cut down pretty quick.

Welcome to hell!?

Again, my super stash of potions saved the day here - as I slowly but surely killed all the summons, summoners, guards and council members present, including head honcho Herecinde. And so all the Thalmor here were wiped out. Or so I thought.

I have no respect for my enemies.

A Thalmor maid escaped the slaughter by cowering away. I thought about sparing her but realized she might be a "bed warmer" for one of the Thalmor big wigs. Can't have any of their spawn surviving now can we? Total Ramsay Bolton moment. Go watch Game of Thrones if you don't know the reference.

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Skyrim: A Death of Infinite Spears

Adventures in Skyrim - spoilers ahead! You can follow the rest of the story here!

With the keys from the General's quarters we gain access to the "Jail cells" which really should be renamed to utterly BS corridors of traps. Fillin was silly enough to try follow me through and died a death of infinite spears (a cluster of auto-triggering spear traps). Fortunately Eydis knew how to obey a wait command.

I can do it, trust me! (Famous last words)

Even without the traps, the jail was really more a guarded mausoleum, featuring Thalmor brutes and necromancers doing nasty things to the dead. Fortunately none of them were immune to their own traps which made things a little easier. Their resident executioner had some nice gear too, for a relatively easy mook. He also wore a key to the manor. Because that's the guy you want to hang on to your house keys right?

Wake up in the middle of the night due to a strange noise, see a hooded guy with a large axe. I'm sure you'd also breathe a sigh of relief!

Apparently burning beheadings need to be censored.