Great Expectations (I probably shouldn’t reference books I haven’t read.)

This image has been driving me crazy.

I know what I want it to mean for Skyrim. I want it to mean that my dreams for the open-world game will be realized. Yet I cannot convince myself that Skyrim will come to me, glimmering in its sterling armor, astride a great white horse, and whisk me away to the perfect, immersive gaming experience for which I have been yearning since first discovering Morrowind.

I know that’s a lot to ask from a leaked werewolf picture. I know I sound crazy. I’ve felt crazy for the past two days trying to figure out how to describe my future disappointment.

Instead, let me just describe the scene that popped into my head when I first saw this image.

There I am walking through a forest in Skyrim, as whatever character I created, with my trusty, rusty axe in hand, and an inadequate number of healing spells or potions at my disposal. A distant snarl quells my incipient courage as I wander. I decide to hug the cliff-side, and keep walking, ostensibly safe from one angle of ambush. I’m a 10 minute run from town. I’m alone. A protrusion in the foliage forces me away from the wall. Another snarl rolls over the ambience of the forest. This one was closer. Much closer. A rock tumbles down the cliff and across my field of view. My eyes are automatically drawn upwards. I already know what’s up there. Atop the protrusion stands the wolf-man. Its muscled chest, cast against the backdrop of the setting sun, expands and collapses with each steady breath. I count only two of his breaths before I turn and run from the face of the cliff and deeper into the forest. The beast won’t be far behind me, and it won’t be long before the short-term advantage of fleeing expires. If I survive, I’ll have to look into this werewolf problem.

I do not believe that my first werewolf encounter in Skyrim will be anywhere near that cool. That bugs me.

Now you go.

What does this picture imply to you? How does it influence or describe what you expect from Skyrim?


2 thoughts on “Great Expectations (I probably shouldn’t reference books I haven’t read.)

  1. It looks like the Werewolf’s name is Sinding, which is a pretty cool name for a Werewolf, since you ask. And, since you ask, it leads me to wonder if Sinding is a sobriquet or if his birth name/human name was Sinding. I like it for a Werewolf name, but not so much as a human name.
    If I turned into a Werewolf, would I change my name? I’ve always thought of myself as more of a Vampire-type of person. Like if I were going to make a monster movie, I’d cast a guy like me as a creepy, pale, gaunt Vampire long before I’d put me in Werewold makeup. Though Benny made an excellent Werewolf last halloween. And the legs of wolves are quite sinewy, a thin Werewolf is probably just as frightening. OK, I could be a Werewolf. Not that you get a choice. I would definitely call myself by another name, a la Mr. Edward Hyde.
    How long has he been a Werewolf? Does he have control over the form? Can he turn back to human form at will? Is he bound by the moon cycle? He’s naked. So does he have a cache of human clothes somewhere that he can grab when he turns back into a human? Or is her a permanent Werewolf?
    In the screenshot it looks like you’ve agreed to hunt along side Sinding and hunt the other hunters. I don’t know what that means, but there’s a fire in the forest and it looks like you two are about to charge headlong into a burning forest to kill other “hunters.” That sounds like a really cool scene for a videogame.
    Or is that just the morning sky?
    This screenshot also reminds me of the last thing my grandfather said before her died, “Never turn your back on a werewolf.”

  2. I always felt that werewolves were forced into dual identities. A bit like superheroes, but superheroes made the choice to create their alter ego. There are also so many differences between a werewolf and their human form that, much like a superhero, if someone knew the truth, it would be very dangerous for them. The human form could easily be pale and gaunt, and not some emotionless kid who dislikes shirts and sparkly vampires. Then at night, or by the light of the full moon if you’re a purist, here comes the fierce killing machine ripping out throats and shedding on your carpet.

    I think the screen shot might have a Harvest Moon, maybe a Blood Moon (also known as a Hunter’s Moon), not a morning sun. I imagine this is a “I scratch your back, you watch mine because you’d shred it to pieces with your deadly claws if you scratched me” set up. You have the option to kill the hunters and gain a powerful ally, or kill the werewolf and gain the adulation of the terrorized village and/or hunters.

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