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Skyrim has been one of the best games of 2012 and after the release of Dawnguard and the story of vampires vs hunters (more importantly you get a crossbow), Bethesda releases Dragonborn. Dragonborn takes you to the island of Solstheim where a lot has been going on since the events of Red Mountain and Elder Scrolls III: Marrowind. The first Dragonborn may be on Solstheim and here is your review of Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim DLC Dragonborn.
You get attacked by a group of mercenaries who, after you kill them, drop a message that explains to attack you. You find out it was from Solstheim so you book passage from Windhelm. When you arrive in Raven Rock you realize 3 things right away… a giant pillar that no one can seem to remember why or how it got there, Sosltheim is a depressing place no one seems to like and it is covered in 50% ash and 50% frost.
You quickly realize, there have been previous Dragonborn… this you knew, but that the original… the OG if you will, is still around and somewhere in Solstheim and he is looking for you. The city of Raven Rock is being attacked by Ash Men that come out of nowhere. The story is immersive and feels refreshing from other game DLC that attempt to stack new things on each other. You get a new island to explore, good quests and a lot of interesting characters to meet.
New armor and weapons come into play as well as new Thu’um Dragon Shouts to play around with. It opens up your commerce abilities as well and gives you some very good hunting grounds for coin and for items. Dragon riding is fun, but has more of a gimmick feel to it. You can only ride them within their circling area, but you can attack enemies with them, but again it is very limited. It has that little quirky feel to it and its slightly fun for a little bit.
The new additions make Solstheim feel like a alien place, which is perfect. You feel as if something is wrong and as if something is different about this place. Between the bone armor, new weapons, creepy as hell enemies and interesting characters, there is a lot to love about Dragonborn.
The Dragonborn DLC feels like a whole new game. It mixes a new world into your story and involvement of Skyrim. Dragons have come back to not just Skyrim, but to Solstheim, the former province of Skyrim, as well. House Redoran, who controls Solstheim, has many problems with Solstheim because it has become essentially worthless. Mines are unable to be used and there is little wealth to be found. You though, can fix these issues.
This DLC offers about 12-15 hours of pure storyline, with another 10-15 of roaming and small side quests. It is easily one of the larger DLC’s to come out since Fallout: New Vegas. This to me is the best addition DLC out there, easily surpassing Batman: Arkham City by a wide margin in my book.
Dragonborn is a game within a game. Just like all Elder Scrolls titles this offers more than you could ever imagine. The beauty of Solstheim is in the sadness and negativity of the inhabitants, everyone seems to be angry that they are there, but they are stuck and they are making the best of it. Easily the most wonderful thing to look at to me is the great view of Red Mountain on the mainland of Marrowind which makes you feel like you are right there and with how well Solstheim was remade, I would anticipate and love to see a redux of Marrowind. For now though, enjoy Dragonborn, my vote for DLC of the year.
Overall Grade: A