dawnguard-vampire-form

Skyrim’s Dawnguard Reads My Mind

Last time I went to play Skyrim I got to try out the Steam Workshop for the first time. Near the top of the most downloaded mods was a Vampire enhancing package. The package added a ton of Vampire skills and even tiers of vampirism. Each tier had its own abilities. I’ve been really into the whole vampire scene lately. I’ve been playing an awesome campaign in Vampire: The Masquerade with a bunch of friends. In that I play an Elder vampire who focuses on manipulation and either using my claws or dual wielding swords. I’m basically a Sith Lord who feasts off of people’s blood. Every Saturday night I gather with my friends and roll some dice in a crazy story spearheaded by our master of the dark and obscure Paul Popiel, who also writes for this site. Needless to say, I’ve been wanting more digital vampiric fun.

I’ve tried to make Skyrim more vampire accessible but it wasn’t enough. I didn’t feel like the empowered bloodsucker I should be. Enter the Dawnguard trailer. Finally Bethesda gives some insight into the first DLC for their massive, massive game. Before I even head into why this will sate my need for some night time terrorizing, I have to say that this add-on looks jam packed with intense storytelling. One of the biggest issues I’ve had with the Elder Scrolls games was that I didn’t really care for the story. Morrowind came close and sure I was getting somewhat into Skyrim’s. The best part of Skyrim for me was everything dealing with Paarthurnax and that mountaintop. I felt like everything from that point and until Alduin confronted us up there was really good stuff. Dawnguard looks to make a return to more story heavy segments.

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The trailer for Dawnguard talks about our hero, the Dovahkiin, saving what seems to be a cult leader’s daughter. He questions your motives, however. Are you with him or against him? Are you siding with the Dawnguard or will you stand with these mysterious people? Who are these people? They are vampires. Insanely awesome looking vampires. These aren’t the vampires you are used to from Oblivion or Skyrim. In Dawnguard we are getting pure blooded vamps that can transform into terrifying creatures with wings. These guys are powerful. Feasting on victims looks to actually mean something now. Bethesda went full on with the werewolves in Skyrim, which was cool. However, they continued to half ass the vampires which was upsetting to see. It is awesome to finally know that the night will be dangerous for once.

I’ve never been a fan of just watching human-looking vampires do their deeds. It gets boring and you tend to forget that you’re watching a vampire movie. Sure you’ll see some fast movements and some fangs but it just looks like superhumans slapping each other. I like when movies and games take the different route with transformations, mutations, and flat out monsters. Take Blade 2 with the Reapers, Dylan Dog with Belial, Underworld with the hybrids, and while I could go on you get the idea. Vampires don’t always show their true form. It is normally against their code. I get it. However, it’s nice to see that we won’t just be dealing with fang-equipped humans. We get those and then some. The transformations in Dawnguard look sick. Preying upon people and feasting looks really fun.

Say you don’t care for vampires, though. What will Dawnguard offer you? You can go against the night dwellers and join the actual Dawnguard ranks to purge the world of these abominations. The DLC will also be introducing crossbows. Which I saw one user say he’s “puking rainbows” over. I didn’t know this was exciting news until I read that. There is also a blue dragon diving underwater during a fight. We’ll get to deal with the Elder Scrolls themselves some more. We may even be able to read the scrolls which looks like it changes the in-game world. The horse backing combat looks to be coming with this add-on, as well. There is even an undead-looking blue-flamed mount that we see someone riding in the “vampire realm”. There is a lot that Dawnguard offers.

Skyrim’s first DLC will be released on the Xbox 360 first with a timed exclusive hitting the PS3 about a month later. No word on when the PC version will hit. The add-on will cost 1600 MS points ($20). Bethesda has said to look forward to E3 for more info.

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