Sunday, February 26, 2012

Questin' for the Greybeards: Gettin' Horny with Jorgen Stormcaller's stuff

Welcome to another fantastic edition of Geeking out in Skyrim.  Its been a week with no updates, as the real world has kept me very occupied with my mundane job of making sure gambling addicts always have a place to spend away their hard-earned money.  Its a dirty job, and I love it.

Now then!  On to better things!

Retrieving the Horn of Jorgen Stormcaller, for the Greybeards.

After ascending High Hrothgar and meeting with the Greybeards, they presented me with a task; to fetch some ancient artifact known as the Horn of Jorgen Stormcaller, the first of the Greybeards.  Such an item of course would be within the sepulcher of said owner, because he's been dead for thousands of years.  So y'know, I better be careful with whatever I find down there.

Thousand-year-old-cheese?  WINNING.
Before you even ask; yes I ate it.  I had left High Hrothgar without raiding their supplies, so after hauling ass accross half of Skyrim to get to Jorgen's tomb, I needed a little pick-me-up.  In no way was eating a millenium old wheel of goat cheese a bad idea that made me hallucinate giant spiders trying to eat me.

Honey, I shrunk the Dragonpuncher
Because those spiders were quite real.  I mean what other reason could be the cause to have such nightmarish visions of such nature?  Food poisoning?  Really?  That's insane.  You're insane.  I drank enough alcohol after that cheese that I should've been in an alcoholic coma, awaiting Death's timely arrival.  But no; Dragonborn metabolisms are too strong for such mortal woes, and I powered on after fisticuffs were made with the totally-real-and-not-made-up spiders.

Naptime of the Living Dead
Halfway through the tomb, I found a pair of Orcish plate gloves, which explain the change of style; also they allow me to punch harder or something.  I wasn't aware that Jorgen Stormcaller was a fan of Orcish Couture, but whadayaknow.  So of course, I get to this main room filled with sarcophagii; or sarcophaguses, sarcophages, snuffalupagus.  Coffins, and a lot of them.  "Oh cool.  I'm pretty safe here, everything's dead, and I can stop tripping out on cheese."  NOPE.  The resting Draugr decide to pop out and say Hi!  With their teeth, and boney sharp limbs.  I return the favor, with my two meaty ham-sized fists.

You got: Dragon Word!  It makes you translucent.  Boo.
After giving the undead a good exorcizin', I'm saddened to see that Jorgen's Dais is Hornless.  Not only that, instead of the horn, there's a note!  Someone came in here before me, left everything that wanted to eat me with their giant teeth alive, stole the horn, AND left a note to sass me about it.  I punched the shit out of that note.  Whatever.  Maybe Jorgen has some other instruments lying around, like a trombone, or a percussion harp, or a kazoo or something.

Jorgen's got a lot of junk in his trunk.
While there were no other instruments, I did strike it rich!  Lots of wonderful ancient treasures to pawn the hell out of, to make up for my reckless property purchasing in Whiterun!  Staff of Flames?  More like Staff of Paying off my Mortgage!  With the place thoroughly looted, my attention turns back to the note from that sneaky thief; "Meet me in Riverwood if you want the Horn."  Damn right I do!

So I go ALL the way back to Riverwood; and meet up with the owner of the note; Delphine.  Delphine is a Blade.  Not an actual blade, but a person with the title of.  They used to be the Emperor's personal Guard back in Cyrodiil, and were pretty badass.  They wear splintmail and use katanas, so think of them as the awesome Samurai caste within the Emperor's entourage, even though the Emperor is more of a Westernized King-figure than say, an Eastern Emperor.  Anyways, Delphine is one of those, and its been 200 years or so since the events in Oblivion (Elder Scrolls 4), and the Blades are kind of in a bind.  There's 2 of them left, and she's one of them.  Also, she doesn't know where her other Blade friend is.  So she needs help.

Back when I got that Dragonstone for the Jarl?  Yeah, that was her doing.  She convinced him  to make me do it, so she could suss out just who I was, and then, if I was trustworthy.  Lady, I'd gladly help you out, but you went the wrong-ass way of asking me.  Give me the Horn.

Oh she will, she says, first she needs to test out a theory of hers, and I'm gonna help.  It'll be win-win for me she says, because that Dragonstone?  Actually a map.  Of all the dragon burial sites, but the dragons they're not staying dead.

Basically she wants me to kill a dragon dead, to prove her theory that they're not staying dead, and that she knows where they'll show up next.  Ok lady, fine.  I'm the Dragonpuncher.  One punched dragon, coming up.

Dragon souls taste like strawberries.
There.  See?  Dead dragon, as promised.  Surely after all the good word-of-mouth you've heard previously in the Jarl's court, this wasn't so much a test as it was a community service I did for the people of Kynoreth; what with there being a dragon in these here parts.  There's no way you needed proof of who I wa..

Delphine the Blade; kinda like Mack the Knife, but more lame.

Goddamnit.  Everyone's a critic.  Is it SO HARD to beleive that yes, I can absorb dragon souls into myself and use their essence to form powerful vocal magic shouts?  Also I punch things?  Thoroughly impressed with me, she gives me Jorgen's horn, and tells me to lay low for a while, as she's got to think some things over.  Hopefully she'll ponder her trust issues with me.

Next time on Geeking Out! in Skyrim: I decide to join the fighter's guild: The Companions!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

The Greybeards: Not a ZZ Top Coverband.

Going to meet the Greybeards.

Dealing in dragon killings is risky business; all I got for my troubles was a lousy dragon soul, and the opportunity to buy a house in Whitemane for 5,000 gold.  The real-estate business would be a buyer's market considering that now potentially any property is at risk of a dragoning, you'd think.  But no, you want that house?  Pay for it.  (So I did.)

Portal 2 Space Core sold seperately.
So I go about setting up my new house, which comes with my very own Housecarl.  I don't know what that means really, other than some very annoyed woman in armor follows me around all the time.  I told her to sit tight, because if I used her as a follower, that would technically be against the rules.  Also told her to hold all my stuff, because she is oathbound to carry my burden.  Well good news lady; here's 15 sets of iron armor I just made.  Go nuts on that oathbinding.  Oath it up all you want.

High Hrothgar: its like going to your grampa's but with death on the way there.
So; now as a homeowner, I have to go visit the Greybeards.  These are the last guardians of The Word.  Basically they are your generic wizened prophets living on the highest mountain in the game, where they spend their time not-talking because they have become so BAW$$ in Dragonspeaking, that a very whisper from one of these guys could destroy someone.  So basically its a bunch of elderly Black Bolts, puttering around all day, waiting for the destined Dragonborn to show up.  No biggie.

What they don't tell you at the Jarl's courtroom, is that the way to High Hrothgar is filled with nearly every considerable permutation of wild life possible, all hell-bent on making you their latest addition to their layer of winter fat.  Sabrecats are little more than bears with a smidgen less health, and a faster attack speed.  On account of them being cats.

One thing they don't have, is an immunity of getting stoutly punched on the nose, like regular cats.  I went through pretty much all my cheese wheels during and after this fight just to get back up to snuff.  Contents of my bag started to look less like a delicious variety of foods, and just a slowly rotting produce section, overflowing with cabbages.

Picturesque view, when not being mauled by wildlife.
About half-way there; damn Greybeards and their living in the fucking attic of the world.  I've braved the depths of a draugr-filled barrow, the ferocity of a dragon, and the masses of giant nightmare-inducing spiders, surely there's nothing that will impede my progress!  Nothing at all! No--

ICE to meet you!
Mothafukkin' ICE TROLL.  Super strong, super fast, and health regeneration.  The normal Fantasy/Mythology trope holds true, even in Skyrim: trolls have an aversion to fire.  However, that is out of question, as it would require me to abandon my strict regimen of only hitting things with my hands.  I was doing good, too!  I was almost there before I tripped and fell face first onto this guy.

I ended up running around the entire mountain trying to put enough distance between us to be able to regroup and come up with a new strategy.  I couldn't wage a war of attrition, as his health regeneration kept him topped up completely if I did not put constant pressure on his healthbar.  I couldn't either simply plant my feet and wail on him until one of us dropped, because it was clear I would be the one dropping every time.  By the time I reached the Greybeard's doorstep, all I had left were some grilled leeks, and some wine.  Broke-ass Dragonpuncher.  At least I'm not homeless.

Citizen Sniiiiiiips!
I bet this guy's got a whole bunch of cash he's willing to be violently parted with!  Next step: doing the Greybeards' errands (while staying off their lawn).

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Adventure Begins!


Herein lie the adventures of Ge'ek Outt; Nord Dragonpuncher.  On a dare for a friend's radio show (GeekOut! on CKUM 93.5 FM every Saturday from 7PM to 8:30PM in the Greater Moncton Area), I started a new character in Bethesda's Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, with the objective of getting through the first dungeon and beyond, while relying on my own two fists, and solely my own two fists; I was not allowed to use any other means of damage.  So no spells, no swords/axes/maces, no nothing.

At the start of the show, I entered Bleak Falls Barrow, the first dungeon in the main quest line (After the one from the tutorial, during the sacking of Helgen).  This was the initial challenge; getting through Bleak Falls Barrow by the end of the radio show (an hour and a half affair) and then defeating the Dragon that's triggered when you turn in the quest from said dungeon in Whitemane.

The challenge as it were was a success; not only did I manage to complete the dungeon, kill the dragon, and prove to the Jarl of Whitemane that I was indeed the Dragonpuncher, I had time to FUS a bunch of plates off the Jarl's sumptuous dining tables.  But more-so was that I had fun doing it.  So much, that I decided to keep playing ol' Ge'ek Outt (Traditional Fantasy Name) whenever the fancy struck me.

And so this blog is to catalog the stuff I do with him, and more-so the stuff I eat with him.  Delishus Cabbagez.

Bleak Falls Barrow.

Spider-sense; going haywire...
Upon entering the dungeon and dispatching two bandits lollygagging at the entrance of the barrow, it was a rapid descent through empty abandoned chambers... until this one.  Clearly inhabited.

Beleive it or not, NOT the biggest spider in the game.
Defeating that thing allowed me to 'rescue' Arvel the Swift.  By rescue I mean chase the theivin' bastard down, because he renegued on our deal:  If I save him, he'll give me the Golden Claw.  So I cut him loose and he bolts, taking advantage of the fact that I had just drank 2 minor health potions and eaten 4 potatoes to restore my health after battling that giant spider.  Elven bastard.

Not so swift now, are ya!?
My Golden Claw!  Mine!  Sucker could run, though.  Guess it wasn't just a silly made-up name.  Good thing he also died right next to the door I needed the Golden Claw for!  What could possibly be behind a door requiring a massive gold key in the shape of a dragon's talon?  Zombies.  Lots and lots of zombies.

Naptime of the Living Dead
See that tiny bit of red there?  That was my health.  Took every last health potion I had to survive the undead onslaught of Draugr (Dragon-worshipping variant on your normal zombie theme, also they're vikings.  So, scary in other words.)  At this point, all I had left was some raw rabbit meat (urk.) and 3 cabbages.  The dungeon itself was rife with Magicka potions, and Stamina potions, but not very helpful in Health potions.

Also they could've been sitting there for a long while, so the prospects of drinking spoiled potions and eating cave mold wasn't too promising.

Waterfalls: do not chase. stick to known estuaries.
After surviving (barely) the hall filled with Draugr, I was faced with my first true hard decision; jump down the waterall here, and continue forwards into the barrow, or remain up top where I could still exit the dungeon, and go for supplies.  Backtracking is for sissies, communists, and the mentally ill.  So after taking the plunge, I took a moment to look up and wave goodbye at my only salvation.  It was punch or be punched now.

Let sleeping Draugrs lie.
Winding down the waterfall chasm, I ended up in this pretty well-lit grotto; with a large dais decorated with an altar, carcophagus and treasure chest.  Oh and a very angry Draugr, intent on reclaiming the Dragon Claw.  Sorry buddy, finders keepsies losers weepsies.

Once the restless zombie was slain, I was allowed to exit the barrow with my quest item in tow: a dragonstone of various importance to the Jarl of Whitemane's court wizard.  However upon arrival and a "thank you" from the regent-lord, some fool runs in screamin' DRAGON!  DRAGOOOOON!  As you can guess, I was asked to deal with this new situation by the Jarl.  Well, I wasn't so muh as asked, as I was tasked to do it regardless of my willingness to go fight a dragon, considering that at the start of the game, I owed my life to the dragon who decided to make the little hamlet of Helgen its bitch, while my head was on the executioner's block.

But this was part of my challenge; I had to go.  I had my honor to uphold!  I had drove too and from the radio studio with minutes to spare to get an HDMI cable so I could actually to this, and damnit; I would not be denied!

So there lil Ge'ek Outt is, running across the open plains to the west tower outside of Whitemane, heading to go fight a dragon.  And this is where I died the first time.  EXACTLY when Siskoid goes "So where are you now?" and looks over at my screen, to see a nice 3rd person view of my flaming corpse drop like a ragdoll.

However, I had previously saved behind a large rock, and attempted the dragon fight again.  This was going to be hard, however, as I had only stocked up on cheese and bread, instead of health potions.  Ge'ek Outt is not the sharpest tool in the shed.

CSI: Skyrim
Oh hell yeah.  Take that, dragon!  Right in the kisser!  (Well, more like running around debris, and taking a few shots at the dragon's ass before he'd turn around and attempt to roast me with his all-consuming firebreath)  For my troubles, I got a handful of gold, and some neat swag in the form of dragon bones & dragon scales.  Heavy as all get-out, but worth to keep as they're indispensable as crafting materials later-on in the game.

Posin' for my adoring fans.
Dragonpuncher, buddy.  But I'll let it slide.  This time.  having previously learned FUS (Dragon-word for Force) in the barrow grotto after defeating Mr.-I-am-a-zombie-and-have-issues-with-letting-go-of-stuff-like-that-golden-claw, I was able to apply the freshly harvested Dragon Soul to learn my first Shout!  Unrelenting Force!  I tried it out on the dragon remains, but they remained immobile.  Guess I'm not strong enough yet.

I talk with my fists, and I haven't lost an argument yet.
Thanks Cap'n Obvious; that WAS shouting!  I am a Dragonborn; hell you saw the dragon's soul get sucked out of a dragon's corpse that I fistfought moments ago, and in a visibly showy display of lights and Ooh! Aah! jump into my noggin'.

This is where the first of possibly many of Ge'ek Outt's adventures end, as this was the end of the radio show.  Challenge: SUCCESS.  I'll be posting more of his going-ons as often as possible.

In the meantime, go visit Siskoid's Blog of Geekery, and go tell him what you think of Spider-Man or Batman or Dr.Who or whatever.  He has some interesting things there not-Skyrim related.