zondag 23 december 2012

Skyrim: Mod spotlight - Vilja in Skyrim

I recently started playing with this mod and i am just so impressed by it that i just had to write a short post about it.

This mod is called Vilja in Skyrim, some people might remember Vilja from Oblivion, well now she has arrived in Skyrim :)

Basicly Vilja is a companion mod, but ther is so much more to her than just a companion that follows you around and blocks the doorway you wanna go through (like Lydia does all the time).
This companion feels much more "alive", she actually interracts with the world, she will make remarks about things she sees, give comments about quests you are on or give her opinion on quests you have done.
In fact she talks a lot, and by a lot, i mean A LOT :)
Sometimes she is annoying, sometimes you will laugh, she talks a lot to you, to herself or to other companions (like Lydia, Aela and many other..), most companions she will actually hold conversations with, i have not tested with all but she will actually hold whole conversations with Lydia and Aela.

One of the coolest features (i think) is that you can actually ask her what she wants to do next, or you just ask her to take you somewhere (like a city, nearest tavern or let her decide on some random location) and she will lead the way and bring you there.
Now that feels really awesome, instead of you taking the lead and your follower just following you, you are now following your companion to where she wants to go.
She will every now and then tell you that "it isn't fair that you always get to decide where to go next".

She is fully voiced with over 4000 lines of dialog with a cute swedish accent :)
There is way more awesome stuff with this mod and if you want to know more you can read it on the mods page on the Nexus.
All in all this makes her feel very much "alive" and not like some stupid mute robot following you around.
I admit that at times she can be quite annoying, as she (by default) doesn't shut up, i like her that way, but you can, in her menus, adjust her setting so she does talk less.

Here's a little video that will give a much better review of Vilja than i did in this post :)

For me this companion is so much fun, that i have left all others at home, whenever i just take Lydia with me it feels like i am missing something :)

zaterdag 22 december 2012

Travelling back to Skyrim

It's funny how you can ignore a game for a long time and then get completely back into it :)

I had bought the Dawnguard and Hearthfire DLC for Skyrim during the Steam sales, i used to play Skyrim A LOT, but at a certain pount got tired of it.
Not that long ago i somehow ended up on the Nexus and saw some great new mods out and that reminded me i had bought the DLC so i figured it was time to check that out.

I always fear starting my (modded) Bethesda games after release of updates/DLC because it always breaks the game/mods, and, no surprise, this time it also did.
I couldn't start building a house in Hearthfire and i couldn't enter the Dawnguard Fort without crashing the game..
Even without mods activated the game would still be bugged as hell, i would actually say even more bugged than with mods as i have quite a few mods that fix stuff that Bethesda left in.

So first i had to figure out what was causing all that, first thing of course is checking which mods i wanted to use and which mods could go, after that updating all mods to the latest releases.
That fixed my Heartfire problems, but the crashing at Dawnguard Fort still happened, in the end i found that there was a script in my scripts folder that altered the mannequins in the game (i think there used to be a "wandering" mannequin bug and this script fixed that), that script caused the crashing, after removing that script everything (seemed to) work.

But my happiness was short, apperantly my save game was allready pretty bugged, had a savegame with a huge filesize (226MB) and during play the game would constantly freeze, pretty much unplayable..
So a new game had to be started, with a new character.

Eventhough i hated abandoning my (first Skyrim) character, it does feel kinda nice to start over, despite allready knowing most of the quests, i am still seeing stuff i don't remember from my first playthrough.
I also enjoyed Hearthfire and Dawnguard, although Dawnguard was still buggy/glitchy like hell, i actually had to use the console at least twice to be able to advance in the questline because some scripted scene would not start (like Serana opening the portal to the soul cairn) and many more small glitches/bugs, overall i would say Hearthfire and Dawnguard where enjoyable, but i was not very impressed with them, but they felt very rushed, i have seen stuff in mods that is much more impressive and though out, and better working than what Bethesda showed in Hearthfire and Dawnguard (and mods are free!!).

I may have said it before but Bethesda really needs to take a look at the modding community over on the Nexus and get some of these people to work for them, i mean i see modders doing way more impressive things with (i assume) the same tools the devs use and usually a lot less bugs/glitches.

So far i have played over 500 hours of Skyrim and i think there will be many more :)
Although i doubt i would be playing this much without mods :)

zaterdag 1 december 2012

Restless Gamer Syndrome

I guess it has something to do with the time of the year.
Somehow most of the year i am pretty happy playing whatever i am playing, however when i gets towards that last few months of the year it seems as if i am getting bored/unhappy with the games i am playing and start looking for new games to play and jump from one to another.

Don't know if it is just me or if other gamers have the same thing :)

So i have been looking and playing (and trying) lots of games, lately and one of my favorite places to check for games has become kickstarter.
There are quite a few games that have caught my attention and i can't wait to check those games out.
Here's just a few:
Wasteland 2 - http://kck.st/yDcMry
Shadowrun Returns - http://kck.st/HgUlMj
Project Eternity - http://kck.st/Sl7W7K
Star Citizen - http://kck.st/RXG0Z8
Shadowgate - http://kck.st/VsUwJ9
Sui Generis - http://kck.st/PkmGrD
Limit Theory - http://kck.st/WivH2X
Elite: Dangerous - http://kck.st/YN6rVC
The Infection Simulation - http://kck.st/RdYtVP

Other than that i have been getting back into some of my "old" games like The Sims 3, Darkstar One, Freelancer and of course the Steam sale left me with many games to play...
I am also having lots of fun in Sleeping Dogs, always like these open world kinda games and i think it is one of the reasons why i actually play MMO's, just to get that feeling of an open (big) world to explore and adventure in.
I have also been looking at some browser games like World of Steam (Beta), Drakensang Online and Battlestar Galactica Online.

At the moment i just can't get myself to play any of my MMO's, although i did play a little WoW just to check out Mists of Pandaria but other than that it's mostly singleplayer games i am playing.

Another thing that might have contributed. was the fact that i (re)discovered cycling during my summer hollidays and started cycling a lot and enjoying it a lot, that got my mind off of gaming and i didn't play much the months after that (hence the long period of me not gaming/blogging).
Until a couple of weeks ago the weather was quite pleasent to be cycling, but with the cold weather lately i guess my interrest in gaming got back :)

Now to get into my huge backlog of games..