Is Skyrim Really Hard To Figure Out?

Skyrim's extensive storyline and lots of quests can confuse anyone.

is Skyrim really hard to figure out
Is Skyrim really hard to figure out?

When it comes to open-world role-playing games, there aren’t many titles that are as iconic as The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. Even though it is a 13-year-old game, you will find it outperforming many modern titles. If you have played the game, you know the 96% score from Metacritic is totally justified.

Key Takeaways

  • Skyrim’s learning curve isn’t overly steep. You can learn its basic controls and the storyline within the first few opening scenes.
  • Its vast open world can be overwhelming for new players. Even after having a map and compass, beginners might struggle to stay on track with the main storyline thanks to hundreds of side quests and distractions.
  • Alchemy, though a powerful tool in the game, is not very beginner-friendly. Collecting ingredients and figuring out useful recipes through trial and error can be frustrating without community help.
  • Instead of irregularly trying various difficulty options, sticking to one thing and improving step-by-step is a good way to master the game.

However, for many beginners, Skyrim might seem complex. Yes, it has a few skill barriers to entry. I also agree that for many new players, this can be a challenge and things start heating up after the first level. 

But is it really hard to figure out Skyrim? Well, there are a few issues for beginners but none without a solution. Let me try to make sense:

The Learning Curve

As I mentioned above, Skyrim does have a learning curve, but it’s not very steep. The game is designed in a way that forces players to explore it by themselves and learn from experiments.

Similarly, as you progress through the storyline, you automatically pick up more advanced techniques. Even Bethesda has introduced various tutorials into the gameplay to help new players.

Skyrim has a vast open world
Skyrim forces players to explore and learn on their own (Image credits: Steam)

For example, the game begins with a dramatic introduction that guides you through character creation while dealing with a dragon attack. You might think the beginning is a bit intense.

However, it works as a tutorial and players get to learn basic controls and get an idea about the main storyline.

The Massive Overworld And Quests

Skyrim has a massive over-world and figuring it out is a big challenge. It has so many cities, towns, and dungeons. If you are new to the game, you will be overwhelmed by it.

While you have the map and a compass to find your way through the huge landscapes, they aren’t always enough to keep you on track. However, to make it easier, you can unlock fast travel after discovering locations.

For me, the huge landscapes are a good thing as I love to explore such games.

Skyrim has a vast open world
Skyrim has a vast open world (Image credits: Steam)

Newbies, on the other hand, can find it challenging to keep track of the main storyline and quests. Side quests and many other distractions can easily take away their attention. But again, anyone who’s played such games before won’t find it difficult to focus.

Now coming to the quests, when combining all main quests, side quests, and miscellaneous quests, Skyrim offers over 270 quests. Here comes the problem: The game doesn’t always make it clear which quests are important and which are optional. For a beginner, this will certainly be confusing.

I think it all comes down to who can give the storyline enough time. For anyone who’s played such games before, Skyrim won’t be a difficult egg to crack.

Alchemy And Recipes

Another thing that was originally meant to make the gameplay experience better is Alchemy. It can easily turn the tide of battle in your favor. However, once again, it isn’t very beginner-friendly. The process involves finding ingredients from plants, and animals, and even getting them from monsters.

As a beginner, you will face a few challenges in utilizing this feature. The first problem is collecting the ingredients. The whole world of Skyrim is filled with plants and resources for alchemy. The problem is to find the useful ones for your recipes.

How to know which ingredients are useful for a recipe? Now this is another problem. You can do experiments and follow the trial-and-error rule. But it is very time-consuming and often frustrating.

Plants in Skyrim
Each plant offers a different effect when used in a potion (image credits: Steam)

There is an easy way out, though. You can check various online communities and guides to help you through it. For example, I came across this Reddit thread where everyone shared their favorite recipes.

Leveling-up And Difficulty Levels

I think the main reason many players find Skyrim difficult is its difficulty levels. Skyrim scales to your character’s level by introducing tougher enemies as you progress. In this way, the game remains challenging, but it also means that if you focus mainly on non-combat skills, you might find combat more difficult.

On the other hand, you also need non-combat skills to boost your combat effectiveness as they improve your gear and provide powerful buffs.

Coming to the difficulty levels, on Normal difficulty, also known as Adept in-game, you will find Skyrim easier compared to games like Dark Souls or Dynasty Warriors. However, as you change your difficulty levels to Expert, Master, or Legendary, it becomes extremely difficult to manage the game.

I recommend sticking to one thing at a time and specializing in one area instead of trying to be a jack-of-all-trades. For example, you can easily improve your combat through improved gear and potions if you focus on Enchanting, Smithing, and Alchemy. Going step-by-step, the game starts making sense and it becomes easier to figure it out. All it takes is time.

Was this helpful? 🕹️

Good job! Please give your positive feedback 😏

How could we improve this post? Please Help us. 💡