I didn't realize it until now, but 9 years and 5 days ago, Morrowind
graced the P Cs
and Xboxs of role-players everywhere. I unfortunately did not get to play it until I was forced into buying Oblivion
by a friend of mine shortly after getting an Xbox360...and subsequently bought Morrowind off eBay for eight bucks a week or so later. So I'm sort of breaking the unwritten rule of "Don't blog about a review whose subject you haven't even played!" because I have the Xbox version and not the PC version.
Uh, I never read about any sort of hype these games had, but aren't ALL games basically overhyped?
As I entered the world of The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, I found myself enthralled was full of joy. Here was a game that delivered on its promises, I thought to myself gleefully. The music, the graphics, the very responsiveness of the game were all fantastic. This was a game so good that it didn't have a story, some of my friends told me. Others disagreed, saying it didn't have a story it was so good.
Say again? It's good because it doesn't have a story? (which is bullshit, by the way, I know it's easy to be distracted but come on.)
It all came shattering down as I clicked the New Game button. Gone was the magnificent music and the beautiful title screen. The former was replaced only by silence and the latter by an illegibly annotated image of some big blocky creature. The game continued to get better and better, and by better I mean worse.
Hey, wait a minute. Something smells.
After the bar filled itself up, I was greeted by the image of a tremendously ugly polygonal head attached to a just-as-ugly body. This thing made Andross from the SNES Star Fox look like Miss America in comparison. I tried to flee, but was trapped in place as it leered at me. As I watched the screen, dumbstruck in horror, another monstrosity ran towards me like a low-gravity zombie. There truly was no escape! Or so Bethesda thought. Due to decades of training on Microsoft systems, I was well versed in the ways of the three finger salute.
...What the fuck? Are you playing Morrowind or some kind of Creepy Pasta
In relief I laughed in the face of the horrors as I was whisked away. Once I had worked up my courage, I started up the game again and allowed the villains to do their worse. Apparently they wished me to depart their big brown boat. I did so, and gladly, only to be approached by an armored zombie creature. The hideous creature informed me he was an Imperial soldier and demanded to know my race. Either he was as dumb as he looked or I looked just as hideous as he!
...Is this even a review? Am I in the right website? Yes, this is GameFAQs
, this LOOKS like a review, and it has a star next to it - OH.
By clicking my way through the various, but rather meaningless, character customization options I was able to tone down the level of repulsiveness to something that would have only an even chance of scaring the living daylights out of a normal man. Despite being made of sterner stuff, it still repelled me. I had to prove that I was macho enough to take the pain, though, and pressed on.
This is not a review. It's a goddamned blog. A blog that makes Morrowind look like Nightmare Fuel
. Hey, I actually like that idea. Let's make a super-creepy version of Morrowind and force this guy to play it!
The malformed being led me towards a brown building. I use the word led rather loosely here, of course, as I do with the word building. As I opened the door, I was reminded of Ursula Le Guin's classic short story Those Who Walk Away From Omelas, wherein the peace and prosperity of a utopia are maintained by the suffering of a abused, malformed child trapped within a box of a room. Apparently the entire world of the Elder Scrolls was such a room. I hoped that the universe these characters were suffering for was happier than the people of Omelas, for otherwise there'd been a mistake somewhere.
Okay, you fuck, we get it. The graphics are bad. Shit, what am I saying, they aren't even THAT bad.
In any case, after I waited through a dramatic black screen, I was greeted by some sort of funky medieval psychologist who proceeded to give me a personality test. Had I known this was the most role playing to be found in the entire game, I would have spent more time analyzing the multiple choice questions. Your father tells you to clean the barn, but you want to play, the Freud-wannabe informed me in his pitiable voice-over. Your friend says he will do the work for you in return for a later favor. What will you do? I would smack the freak upside the head, that's what I would do. What kind of sick people developed this game?
There are a few ways we can do this, and the choice is yours. You can stop writing reviews, you can re-write the review from scratch WITHOUT getting drunk this time, or you can swear off video games forever.
Alas, my only options in the make-believe scenario were to accept the offer, refuse the offer (with the justification that it's my job, not his), or to split the work (and split the favor). And so it continued until Freud decided I was really a peasant monk. I told him I was a really a crusader. With this, Freud telekinetically filled out a form lying on a nearby table and released his Xavier-like mind lock on me so that I could at last experience the freedom of Morrowind. Being willing to be led by the nose, I decided to pick up the paper and wait for freedom until I was outside.
You're not going to accomplish much by just standing there, waiting for things to happen.
No sooner did I do so than Freud began lecturing me on the evils of thieving. Out of spite, I picked up his pen, which caused him to again repeat his diatribe against burglary. I decided to beg for forgiveness, but apparently the good doctor had gone mad and would only repeatedly tell me to go through the door. I complied in order to humor the brown-robed old man.
STOP! You violated the law. Since you don't have enough brain cells to pay the fine for stealing a pen, ROT IN JAIL, CRIMINAL SCUM!
Here I came face to face with another ugly soldier, though the only evidence he wasn't the same guy I met initially was a name tag. That was paltry proof — in the time that I'd been playing twenty questions, he could easily have snuck off and switched names. Nonetheless, I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt, largely because he was more heavily armed and armored than I. I proceeded to try to pry him for information, but his impeccable soldier training had left his mind as sharp as a vice. Our conversation went thusly (names have been changed to protect the guilty):
Him: ''Welcome to Corneria.''
Him: Welcome to Corneria.
Him: Welcome to Corneria.
Get to the point. Are you going to explain why you picked the same dialogue box over and over or are you just going to shit bad Final Fantasy
The smog was as thick in the wilderness as it was in the town itself — the hive mind was not an environmentalist, I saw. Out of the blue I heard a yell, but the smog obscured my view. Proceeding onwards, I saw a body strike the floor ahead of me. I noted the body was better dressed than I, so I stole his clothes and left him lying there. Decked out in a pimping robe and pointy hat, I strode through the smog, giant mushrooms towering above me. All at once I came face to face with a damsel in distress. She told me she was trying to be mugged, so I punched her. This was not good enough for the woman and she made her displeasure felt by punching me back. And adding on another punch for good measure. And another. And another. I ran, but I was no match for her speed, either. Soon she had pummeled me senseless, forcing me to reload my previously saved game.
By the Nine Divines! ASSAULT! ASSAULT!
This time when I got to the lady boxer I decided to ask her more about the art of being mugged. She told me she only wanted to be mugged by a particular mugger and told me to tell him so. In this innovative way, I was sent upon a letter delivery quest, something I've enjoyed in my electronic RP Gs
since the 80s.
You know, I'm running out of things to say here. I can only make so many comments on such a horrible review that nobody but the people who already BOUGHT the game are going to understand. If I showed this to someone who wasn't sure if Morrowind was worth the purchase or not, they'd be dumbfounded!
Eventually I found the bandit in a brown tavern. When I told him that the savage seductress wished to be mugged, he vowed to marry her and give up his evil ways. Rarely have I seen such realistic characters in a computer game. I myself decided to visit a pawn shop to buy some quality used goods. I picked up a few books and browsed through them as the pawnbroker looked on, staring right through me. As soon as I touched a sword lying on the counter, however, she moved to give me two black eyes and a number of bruises. My poor character collapsed in a heap and I reloaded the game.
YOU HAVE STOLEN FOR THE LAST TIME, BITCH!
My only hope was to train to become a superior warrior. I did this by punching a brown building over and over. Something had to give eventually and something did: my patience. I resolved to set the evil building on fire, but my efforts failed, for the brown-ness of the structure made it immune to the elements. In despair, I resorted to stabbing at it with my sword, but I left not a scratch on the harder-than-adamantine house. Bethesda had really thought of everything when designing this game.
You...punched...a building...expecting...your skill...to...HOW STUPID DO YOU HAVE TO BE TO THINK THIS WILL WORK!
In real life, I cried myself to sleep that night, knowing that Bethesda had accurately portrayed how little value a lone man represents to the hegemony. Morrowind's superb interactive, reactive nature might be lost on a smaller mind, but not on me. This was a game chock-full of everyday truisms. Never touch items in pawn shops. Never sleep in communal housing. Always obey authority. Humor senile old men. Paint the town brown. Kill rats. Don't think outside the box. Never in all my life have I experienced as immersive
an RPG as this. Morrowind was so powerful that I could do naught else but sell it in the hopes that someone else could cope with the raw intensity. The money so earned goes to fund extra books for those wildly inferior Pencil and Paper RP Gs
. Those, at least, I can handle.
This review has left me dumbfounded. I don't even know what the hell went wrong here. I guess he just doesn't know what a console RPG is. Or maybe...I don't know, I need a nap.