Monday, December 10, 2012

The Longhouse that the Dragonpuncher built

Salutations, all!

Today's installment will contain Chills! Thrills! Following Falkreath's zoning and building code! Murder! Mystery! Home Decor!  No giant spiders, though.  Sorry to whomever keeps getting to this place by using "Skyrim biggest spider", none for you today.  Soon though!  Always gonna be some hot arachnid action somewhere along the line!

Today's piece actually deals with some of the new DLC offered since Skyrim's release last year; specifically the Hearthfire DLC.  Less about active content and questing and stuff, Hearthfire is similar to Oblivion's much maligned Horse Armor.  Its cosmetic, doesn't add much, and is really for the folks who want to have everything (I do.) and expand their immersion into the lands of Tamriel.  (I do want that as well.)  PLUS it was 50% off during Steam's US Thanksgiving sale so HOLLA FOR A DOLLA!  Onwards!

This old longhouse, with Bjorn Valhalla.

Remember one of those courriers I mentioned last week?  Well I followed up on his letter.  It was from the Jarl of Falkreath, effectively a summons; he had some business proposition, and I'm ALL about the business, so I head on over.  I figure Delphine still needs some time to sort out her plan, and I just did a big solid for one of the nine divines; so I figure I've earned some downtime, y'know?

Kind of hard to take a man seriously, when they're maxin' and relaxin' all cool like that.

Siddgeir is kind of new at the whole Jarl game.  So after a few introductions, he asks me for a solid.  There's a mine not-far from Falkreath (LIES!) that is infested with bandits.  He wants them dead.  Why?  Well they kind of welched on a deal with the Jarl, so he's none too happy and honestly would like these loose ends 'taken care of' so they can't be traced back to him.  Whatever; shady deals are bread & butter here in Skyrim, and he's offering me a plot of land to build upon whatever the hell I want, if I complete the task.

That's a fair deal for what I'm usually offered by Jarls; normally its some enchanted helmet, or a spell tome, or maybe even a magical sword; all immediately sent the way of the recycling bin, because I have no use for them.  But a house?  Man I could use a house.  The one in Whiterun is cluttered and useless to me right now.  Time to EXPAND!  So I hoof it over to Bilegulch Mine to find the place... dead.  Seems I've been here before, as there are dead bandits strewn about, most of them already looted down to their unmentionables; my fast travel marker was already lit as well.  When did I come here, previously?  I don't remember.  But hey, that just leaves the mine itself to check out!

Kinda boned if Miner 49er shows up, as I don't have a great dane companion with me.

Turns out I did one hell of a number when I was here previously; the mine itself was empty, save for the Bandit Leader, who I'm amazed didn't just outright leave the mine after all this time of being the sole representative of his gang of murdered marauders.  Some folks just don't know when to quit.  Then I decided to ram my fist into his face.  Repeatedly.

Knuckle sandwiches are for chumps; this here's a FIST HOAGIE.

The mood lighting made it kind of sad.  Kind of.  As soon as he hit the ground, I took his sword, which was enchanted with fire as a token to remember him by, and then proceeded to mine the everloving crap out of the mine.  Orichalcum Ore out the butthole, son!  Of course on returning back to Falkreath, Siddgeir's all happy I did him his favor, and so offers me the plot of land.

For 5,000 gold sovereigns.  Ha Ha you thought it was gonna be FREE, didn't you?  Silly Dragonpuncher.  Seriously spent the better part of 5 minutes resisting the urge to Fus-Ro-Dah his smirk off of his face; but with all those spoils from the bandit and the mine, that price isn't that bad.  Also selling pretty much everything I find helps keep me rolling around in gold coins like I was Scrooge McDuck.  Oh man, Bethesda; anthropomorphic duck-people in next Elder Scrolls game.  go go go go.

Having a bit more cash leftover from raiding the countryside of 'evil do-ers', I figure before going out and staking a claim in the wild yonder its... MAKEOVER TIIIIIIIIIIME.  I'm in desperate need of new threads; these Legendary Dragonbone Armor pieces are effective and all, but they don't really speak to me.  I need something more in line with my humble roots; so I fabricated the following attire.

Dragonborn Hobo.  Dog not included.  (More on him later.)

And at night:

Eat your heart out 3 wolf moon shirt. I got more moons.

I'm expecting to have 'smelly hobo furs' be trending for the upcoming winter fashion catalog.  Its hard being the Dragonborn AND such a trend-setter at the same time, but when you're gifted with such talent it would be a shame to waste it.

New threads, I head on out to my plot of land, Somethingsomething Manor, whatever.  DRAGONPUNCHERLAND!  And to my surprise this is what I find.  An empty lot with a workbench, grindstone, and a pickaxe next to some large stones.  But the most interesting bit was this:

Construction for dummies

While the book seems to insinuate you're a complete moron when it comes to building houses, it does have a bunch of 'recipes' inside it that you learn automatically by reading it.  From there-on, you're able to use the drawing table to doodle up some blueprints like you went to Architect college for 8 million years and know what you're doing.

If leaning on desks and looking pensive/concentrated were a lifeskill, I'd be a goddamn captain of industry.

Ok, so build the floor, foundation, doors, wall supports, walls, ceiling supports and finally roof.  Gotcha.  Oh I need lumber.  Where do I get that?  Local lumbermill?  Sheesh.  They rope you in with "Build your dream house!" and then forget to tell you that everything is EXTRA.  I have to make my own goddamn nails!  NAILS!  Nobody sells those, but sure enough everybody is living in a house of some sort, built with nails!  Except the guys who live in tents, I guess.  Whatever.  Until Skyrim develops Home Hardware technology where I can create a contractor account and order lumber online to be delivered, I gotta do it the old fashioned way.  With my feets and the walking and stuff.


OF COURSE it can't be easy.  Closest sawmill has a wee bit of a dragon problem.  What with the dragon roosting on the sawmill itself.  HEY, it's what I'm here for, isn't it.  Like some clown, here to amuse you.  But instead of balloon animals and seltzer bottles, its punching ancient wyrms and getting covered in eldritch mouth-fire.  Similar shoes, though.

I wish he'd wipe that Smaug look off his face.  Yes I went there.

Once the dragon infestation taken care of, lady at the sawmill didn't even offer a discount.  Just a "HEY! Thanks. that'll be a bazillion gold, ok?  Don't worry, we'll deliver."  AT LEAST THERE'S THAT.  Shipping and handling included?  What are you lady, the of Tamriel?  No, because Amazon at least has decent prices, unlike your war crime of a price system.  Guess I'll go hock more swords to afford it, but in the end, I know its worth it.  Just that hint of buyer's remorse lurking about.

My first(second) house.  Also: moose.  (More on him next time.)

Well I get the first bit of my house done; the plans then open up to being able to add in extra bedrooms (???), an armory, a garden, kitchen, greenhouse, the works.  Weird thing is now that I've built it, every time I leave and come back, there's this moose there, who bolts the instant he sees me.  Like "OH SHIT HE'S BACK." and starts scampering off for the horizon.  Its actually quite annoying, because having a moose infestation is something I cannot wrap my mind around.

It's no Malibu dream house, but it'll do for now.

Once a structure built, you can build furniture on the inside with further materials.  At this point all I had left was enough lumber for a big chest, and a cooking fire.  Baby steps.  Then I hear a ruckus outside; better not be that damn moose again!

Heidy-ho, Necro-neighbour!

Oh good its just my next-door neighbour, a necromancer.  Wait.  Yeah sorry buddy; the homeowner's association (Me.) doesn't look too kindly on the dark arts of bending the very mysteries of life and death to your whim. (You.)  So we're gonna have to take action.  (Violently.)


Mean?  Yes.  Oh my very much yes.  Effective? Also yes.  One's ability to cast is severely hindered when you've just received a steel-toed boot to the soul gems.  Suddenly, somatic and verbal components kind of don't matter anymore.  In other news, the place next door is free for anybody who'd like to move in!  Previous owner has departed for greener pastures.

What a busy day; After all that building and nut-kicking, I took a breather over in Falkreath, and figured I'd go see if there wasn't anything I could do to take my mind off of my house-related thoughts.  Turns out the blacksmith lost his dog!  Hey, finding a lost dog, that sounds pretty easy.  Walk in the park! With a dog! Ha Ha!  Y'know, then this happened:

If you tell me I'm "the Hand chosen by the Master", dog I'ma kill you.

So yeah, that happens.  Next installment (Wednesday!) the time me and this dog go about doin' thangs!

Comments/Requests/Litigations/Etc leave'em below!


  1. This is the one I was waiting for! Awesome tale! You'll need to get an exterminator if that moose problem persists. I like to think it's a typo in the code. Supposed to be mouse, but the game throws in an archived moose instead.


  2. I'll go deeper in details with the moose; it gets weirder. As I further progress in the game it really just ramps up the absurdity of stuff that happens at the same time.

    I'd like to think this is a mix of the level-scaling in the game, and that pattented Bethesda track record of bugs & glitches. The more I level, the more I will stumble upon tougher enemies in my day to day gameplay, but the game also has more information to keep track of; every time I play, I'm effectively telling the game to remember where I placed EVERYTHING EVER, except for the zones I haven't been to yet.

    But once I go there, its more stuff the game has to constantly remember. So glitches/bugs. Its an interesting problem, to say the least.

  3. You once told me something to the effect that the glitches were what made Skyrim exciting, so I await further stories with baited breath.