Skyrim's Ending: A Commentary

Warning: Possible spoilers ahead. If you're someone who hates spoilers and has yet to finish the Skyrim main questline, stop reading now. This blog post has the potential to make you stop playing immediately. Considered yourself warned.

This was what exactly happened a few weeks ago

I've been playing Skyrim for quite some time now, more than a month to be exact, and after completing more than hundreds of quests that effectively made me one of Skyrim's most influential person (considering that I am now the arch mage of the Winterhold college, the Thieves Guild leader, the Harbinger of the Companions, a Legate of the Imperial army, the last remaining Dark Brotherhood Listener and de facto leader and not to mention the thane of a few cities in Skyrim), today was the day where I decided that I was finally ready to step into Sovngrade and face the main bad guy in the game, Alduin, also known as the world eater.

If only the fight was half epic like this

Now being the game of the year, I had high hopes of seeing something epic when I stepped into the afterlife world of the Nords to face the leader of the dragons who also happened to be the first born of a god. After all, I had pretty good experience from the other quests and was hoping that this final battle would outshine them all.

While the entrance to Sovngrade did a very good job on building up to the mood, the full male Nord choir chanting endlessly like a war cry, coupled with meeting with the likes of Ulfric Stormcloak and Kodlak Whiteman whom passed away earlier in the game, and who are now giving the me some inspirational pep talk before the final battle, I had my hopes built up pretty high alright. Only to have them crashing down on me later.

The final battle with Alduin was one of the easiest battle I fought so far. Maybe it's because I overleveled my character or maybe it's because there's three other Nord heroes tanking for me. Either way, all I had to do was to use Dragonrend shout and keep shooting arrows from afar. No sweat. And before I knew it, Alduin was dead (dying in some dramatic way) and the world is once again saved, thanks to me of course.

Maybe I've been playing too much other games like Mass Effect, Dragon Age and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, but when Alduin died, I was hoping for some epic cinematic cutscenes or perhaps some major changes in the world. You know, people rejoicing, peace has finally been restored and my name would be known everywhere by now. That's not too much to ask, isn't it?

Instead, what I got was, how to put it, disappointing at best.

Sure, the ancient Nord heroes congratulated me a bit and said how songs of me would be sung forever in the halls of Sovngrade but that was it. Before I knew it the gatekeeper of Sovngrade came to me and said something about mortals not being allowed too long in the world of the dead. He added that I shouldn't be sad because I would be joining the heroes in Sovngrade when I die and I would be back in Sovngrade before I know it. Yeah right. Last time I checked, the daedric princes like Sithis, Hircine and Nocturnal all want my soul too. And that bastard even had the guts to lock up the Hall of Valor to prevent me from entering back.

The situation was not much more different when I returned to the living world. There were some dragons weeping and whining about Alduin being dead, there was also Paathurnax who say he will bring them to the Way of the Voice and there's also Odahviing who pledges his allegiance to me now. But that's it. That's the best that you can get out of the living world after you killed the entity that threatened to destroy it not so long ago.

There's no celebratory festival, no monument raised in your honor and no songs sung to commemorate your victory. Some guard even had the nerve to tell me about that arrow who took his knee. I was freaking shouted to by Alduin alright? Even the Jarl of Whiterun gave no hoots about the dragon. Like I said, disappointing.

Maybe choosing to fight the final battle in the realm of the dead isn't such a good idea after all. For starters, the only people who will be witnessing your fight are all dead and dead people can't tell the living world about the epic fight of yours. And the living people wouldn't know about it because they didn't see it. Ultimately, it's as if the Dragonborn was like Ethan Hunt in Mission Impossible 4 or Captain Price in Modern Warfare 3. You fought like shit to save the world but no one knows about it because they can't. Sad life, is it? At least some recognition would have been nice.

Maybe that's the whole point. Saving the world silently like any hero would. It's a noble cause. Or maybe it's just because the guys at Bethesda need to meet their deadline.

Either way, the ending to Skyrim is disappointing, if you ask me. For a game that held so much promise throughout the storyline, you would have hoped for a better ending that would blow your breath away. One that could give a definite conclusion to the game, one that makes you feel contented that you've finally saved the world and prevented disaster.

This your face after you've seen Skyrim's ending

The current ending feels empty at best, it makes you wonder if there's something more because it looks forced and rushed. And I'm not the only one feeling this. Forums all around the web are rife with complains regarding the ending. To think that an awesome game like Skyrim would have an ending that would give the game a closure in high note is certainly not asking for too much right?

But still, Skyrim is one heck of a game. I would be playing it again using another character build and making different choices this time round to see how the game would go. And one of the choices includes not going to Sovngrade to kill Alduin because it is freaking disappointing. If you ask me, I think that the thieves guild storyline has the most depth to it. True story

Comments

  1. omg.. I agree with you on all counts. I love this game, but for the ending of the main quest to be so anti-climatic makes me feel as though the denizens of Skyrim are too self-absorbed. They only care about what they own and what you can do for them. Like you mentioned, it's true that the final showdown takes place in the land of the dead and thus the entire province can't be expected to throw a huge homecoming party for the Dragonborn, but what about the people who know about your destiny? No dancing Greybeards? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2QL2iw_Gqc)

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  2. yea i was hoping for an ending like the one in oblivion, sure its easy as shit but everyone treats you like a hero, you become champion and you get to see a dragon and the TES equivalent of satan fight while daedra swarm the imperial city. i do however understand why the ending may have been easy its probably because if you keep getting owned by alduin youd never leave soverngarde. also i like the way if you talk to the greybeards they tell you that your journey doesnt end here, and whatever you do next is your choice. but yea we kinda deserve a better reward and more recognition for saving the world. but oh well, its about the journey not the ending.

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  3. Yeah, I expected to get some crazy insane weapon or to be able to transform to a dragon. But no, basically nothing is new. Why oh why don't the creators of the game think of these things? WHY

    They are very good at programming but not good at thinking of good endings. Since I saved the world I should become a god. But that would be too cool. It would be too much fun for Bethesda to allow.

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  4. Apparently skyrim is REALLY getting asked by people that are saying "Why!? Why make me spend months of my life, and yet make an ending like THAT!?.
    And i agree with them and you, its the worst anti-climaxed game i have ever played. But yes skyrim does save itself by having a great storyline, not to mention the countless sidequests.
    But i do feel that skyrim needed CUT SCENES, I just feel that it makes the game so much better, as you still have the free-choice feeling yet still have the game show you all that it has to offer.
    So yeah really good post, and my god they need cutscenes...

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  5. If BLIZZARD meets BETHESDA...you will have the greatest open world cinematic rpg...
    For consideration: Elder Scrolls multiplayer

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  6. amazing game but the end was so crap made me wonder why i played it for so long all in all great game but a let down at the end

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  7. I agree!

    Not only this, but the lack of resolution of the Thalmor storyline really annoyed me!

    Half of the entire story was about the Civil War and how it was engineered by the Thalmor to keep the Empire weak. I chose not to do the Civil War storyline as both sides had valid points & were also annoying b*stards, but mainly, because I noticed early on that the Thalmor were the ones behind the whole plot (even before I discovered their Dossiers in the Embassy which confirmed this).

    At the end of the game, OK I said the world, but all I have to show for it is some temporary ceasefire and the arrogant Elves roaming about Skyrim thinking they own the place.

    Why on earth after killing Alduin could there not be a new mission where you sit Tullius and Ulfric down again and say "Look, I've killed the dragon. Now let's kill these pesky elves too!" and have an epic mission.

    They either better resolve this situation with some downloadable content update OR Elder Scrolls VI - but I don't want to have to wait another 3-5 years to be able to kill the Thalmor so it better be the former!

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