OXM Reveals New Skyrim Info

The latest issue of the Official Xbox Magazine reveals some tasty new tidbits about Bethesda's upcoming RPG, "Skyrim." Information about the game has been scarce since the last time Game Informer did an exclusive preview of the game, so expect the information in this one to be the last we'll hear about the game for a few weeks.  

Credit goes to Prodigybeast on the official Skyrim forums for posting the following highlights, which are bound to be deleted by a moderator sooner or later.

Just because a dragon flies by doesn't mean automatic death to you. When Todd compared them to big daddies, he wasn't kidding. This one quote says:
"In theory, you can engage a dragon whenever you see one simply by pelting it as it flies past, but make sure you're ready for the fight."
Basically that states that the dragons (not all of them, anyways) won't attack you immediately on sight. This also comes up again in a later point.

Telekinesis spell confirmed. I don't remember if it was just speculated or not, but it's confirmed to be in the spell list. Specifically, OXM said there were 80 spells, but for those of you keeping up with the news, there's certainly a lot more versatility in the spells now.

Speaking on dragonshouts: "The first strain of this new magic that we're shown is the ability to slow time. As you approach the carvings, one word in particular begins to glow. Once its been examined and equipped, a tap of RB slows the entire scene down for eight seconds, allowing you to casually plant arrows in the skulls of any surrounding enemies. Learn the rest of the phrase and you'll get even longer to play at being a medieval Max Payne."

It also mentions the Unrelenting Force dragonshout, which is of course the 'knockback' shout, and also briefly mentions there's a cooldown period after each shout you do. Then it says:
"Also, if you think you're the only one wandering around Skyrim with the ability to turn words into magic, think again."
Now are they referring to dragons, the graybeards, or something else (and by that something worse)? I'm interested.

The mag talks about how you actually feel like you're hitting the person with metal to flesh with each hit of the weapon. Nothing otherwise 'new.'

You have quick menus for each hand. The example they give is say, you switch your left hand immediately from a shield to a fire spell while retaining the sword in the other. Apparently you can switch from the gritty, up-close melee to magic in almost no time spent.

"Bethesda has struck a masterful balance between the straight-forward accessibility of placing items on each trigger, and a system that clearly offers depth and flexibility. Naturally, two-handed weapons do exist, at which point the left trigger may, for example, block with a broadsword or allow you to aim with a bow."

There's also new dragon screen. I think it's been mentioned before, but I had yet to see the screen myself. It's basically the dragon sitting on that stone pillar, much like the one at the end of the Official Trailer that it flies off of, the one in the GI mag. Only this time it's from under and from the front, with the dragon's wings partially outstretched and his head looking away, roaring.

"Skyrim is going to be a slightly less dangerous landscape to negotiate this time around. Rather than initiating a zany chase every time you wander near the local wildlife, many of the creatures (including giants) will simply ignore you unless you give them a reason to attack. Certain breeds are permanently pissed off, though, so don't go trying to shake hands with a frost spider."

The article retouches on the fact that everything is being designed by hand, from the world itself to the dungeons. For the dungeons mainly, they also reiterate what we've heard in that none will be exactly alike. They then mention 'burbling underground rivers, tree roots punching their ways through walls, and odd glimpses of light from the world above' in the 'ancient Nord catacombs.'

Supposedly Bethesda has also focused more on pacing and variety to ensure that you don't 'just find a dark corner to curl up in for a snooze.' The dungeon which they explored was Bleak Falls Barrow from the demo, and this time around there are 'far more traps and puzzles' in dungeons, which gave Bleak Falls section 'a distinctively Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade vibe.'

*Spoiler here*

It says instead, as they went to exit a cave, they found themselves to face to face with 'an enormous, dark gray dragon.' They point out that you can't escape these looming baddies. At some point or another, you're going to have to take these bad boys down, and it's not going to be easy.

OXM then mentions how unlike in Oblivion, people will actually have proper jobs and schedules now. Like how, in the small town of Riverwood, it will feature such things as chopping wood, cooking, and running a sawmill. You can perform these jobs now too, 'so if you want your hero's story to include eight-hour days cutting up hundreds of logs, the option is there.' Each settlement has its own economy, and apparently you can, for example, 'ruin Riverwood's financial state by choosing to sabotage that sawmill.'

That whole 'drop a sword in the middle of a town' deal has more weight to it, too. If the NPC that picks up the sword and likes you, they might offer it back to you in case you dropped it by accident. A neutral-feeling NPC might ask if they can have it, and one who dislikes you 'might simply nab the weapon and take off.'
Then, if you choose to kill that person, the radiant story will then search for his/her relatives 'and may even send one of them in pursuit of you to avenge the murder.'

Also, OXM isn't even mentioning the hints Bethesda kept dropping during the interview. Apparently there's a lot more they want to talk about but can't yet. For example:
"We're expecting something very special from the faction system, which the team seemed to be itching to talk about."
And that isn't referring to the Dark Brotherhood as they mention that later. I don't know what stops Bethesda's pulling on the faction system, but I'm eager to find out.

Don't miss out on our "Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Wallpapers in HD" Gallery.

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