According to vgchartz, over 3.4 million copies of Skyrim have sold in just two days, and that excludes digital. Steam reported recently that nearly 250,000 of its members were playing the game on the day of release. Skyrim, which has now shipped 7 million copies, is selling faster than Battlefield 3 and eclipsed only by Modern Warfare 3. The game is huge – and deservedly so. While I’m not going to give away too many thoughts about it before completing the main quest, the game is pretty much perfect.
But it isn’t flawless.
In internet discussions, I have drawn comparisons between bugs in Bethesda games and typos in Stephen King’s Dark Tower saga. I noticed a lot of typos in the story of Roland Deschain – maybe, say, 20 in total. That’s a lot of mistakes. I could be forgiven for thinking that the editor was really sloppy or that someone wasn’t really paying attention, or that 20 typos in one story was unacceptable. But I’d be wrong. Say the average novel is 300 pages long. I have no idea how many pages are in the Dark Tower saga, but I’m guessing 5,000 is not an unreasonable guess – seven books at around 700 pages each. Therefore, 20 typos in 5,000 pages isn’t any different than one or two typos in 300 pages – it’s the same rate of error – and you’d have to be pretty mean-minded to consider that unreasonable.
I expect to complete most games in around 17 hours, but at that point in Skyrim I’d barely begun. It can’t fairly be compared to any other game because it’s trying to be all other games at the same time. Comparing it to other role-playing adventure games is like comparing the Lord of the Rings movies to Krull.
So I don’t expect perfection, and sometimes I do expect to disagree with certain design decisions.
That is reasonable.
It’s just in this age of entitlement – our me, me, me culture – people are usually unable to express their opinions without coming across like toddlers stamping their pudgy little legs and screaming, “But I want …”
That’s why it was such a thrill when an internet forum user called Zeno didn’t go the usual route of nerd rage and instead simply drew a picture of how he’d do it differently. This is his idea for the user interface – what he thinks is wrong with it, and how he’d do it differently.
(Click to enlarge)
This is when it’s actually a pleasure to be online. In a sense, it’s almost irrelevant whether you agree with his ideas or not. The important thing is that instead of just being another screaming imbecile on the internet, this person decided instead to add something positive to the discussion – like some sort of anti-troll. The internet could use more people like this.