We all have a different idea in our minds of how The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim should in theory look. You might have played the PC version, with or without mods or like many, you might have played the original console release, or the more recent remastered version of the game on PlayStation 4 or Xbox One. Skyrim has been released a fair number of times, and there’s even a VR version of the title for those of you who wanted to get literally lost inside the game.
So how does the Nintendo Switch port stack up to the long, varied history of Skyrim?
Experience an open-world fantasy epic from Bethesda Game Studios®, brought to life with a complete virtual world for you to explore any way you choose.
Rolling clouds, rugged mountains, bustling cities, lush fields, flowing rivers and ancient dungeons are waiting to be discovered…anytime, anywhere. Set your own pace in a world that alters dynamically based on your choices. Play any way you want and define your character through your actions.
While the game’s visuals had to be hacked down a bit from the newer versions to fit on Nintendo’s somewhat underpowered console, the tradeoff is that you can play Skyrim in your bed, on the subway, in the bathroom or everything in between. While the text can be a bit small and the loading times stretch on long enough to be a drag from time to time, playing the game away from your television or PC is enough of a feature that you’ll be able to overlook the compromises.
Despite it’s new resolution, the game still delivers what seems to be the full-scale world of the original, and that epic scope comes through brilliantly when playing on portable mode. The game never seems completely stable at 30 fps, but it hits the target more often than not, which keeps everything feeling smooth and responsive.
While many seasoned players have fought their way through Skyrim more than once in their gaming careers, watching my children play Skyrim for the first time on a portable system has been a revelation. They’re completely taken by the size of the game and the sense of adventure that Skyrim delivers, and the ability to put the system to sleep instantly only to pick up where you left off an hour later makes the experience even more welcoming than it was at launch.
One major key feature of the Switch is how you as a player can even split the Joy-Cons off from the Switch when docked and play around with the included motion controls, which are completely optional but also goofy fun. You swing your hand to swing your sword, and can even use the Joy-Con like a pointing device to enjoy some precision when aiming arrows. Bringing your hand above your waist will either put you into a defensive position with a sword or bring your shield up. It’s not perfect — no waggle control ever is — but it’s enjoyable enough to at least be worth a try.
Fans will also be excited to note that it’s not the only big The Elder Scrolls: Blades announcement to come of out E3 2019. Available right now is a major free update for Blades that adds a new Dragon Slayer quest line, new solo arena quests, a custom jewellery system, support for level 50+ players, NPC voice-over, and more. Check out everything that’s been included in the update here.