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I just found this Hand-On with Skyrim by USA Today, here it is, Enjoy!

heres the link, but i've posted the whole thing under it anyway =D

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/gamehunters/post/2011/11/hands-on-with-the-elder-scrolls-v-skyrim/1 [1]A scene from 'The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.'Bethesda Softworks


Having nailed down spell-casting, defensive tactics and combat of the one-handed and two-handed varieties, it's time to bring on the dragon.

I travel with a band of soldiers from the city of Whiterun to investigate a dragon sighting at the western watchtower. Evidence such as burning bodies and piles of rubble lie nearby, while one surviving guard warns of the dragon's presence.

Suddenly, the dragon lands, and he's a bit upset. I get excited, and perhaps a bit too cocky. My first attempt at slaying it involves slipping behind the dragon while fellow soldiers distract it from the front. The initial strikes from a steel mace whittle down the dragon's health, but two massive slams of his tail is all he needs to knock me out.

After confronting the dragon head a couple of times, and finding my body consumed by flames, I run to the top of a watchtower with longbow in hand. This is my chance to perhaps stay hidden and attack from afar as soldiers continue to provide a distraction.

The dragon had better ideas. He spreads his wings and soars to the skies, gliding past the watchtower to pick me up with his claws and fling me like a rag doll.

Although I learned later from Bethesda Softworks game director Todd Howard this particular dragon was actually twice as difficult as his final incarnation, it still left me eager to continue seeking out more dragons and exploring the world of role-playing game The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.


My hands-on demo lasted roughly 2 1/2 hours, but it clearly felt like a small sampling of the massive world Skyrim contains.

My journey began by choosing a character. Players have several races to pick from, each of which bring certain perks to the battlefield. I selected the Argonian, a lizard race that can breathe underwater and resist most poisons. They also have a spell they can use to quickly regenerate health for 60 seconds.

Players can tweak and enhance any features, from scars and war paint to fine details on the character's face and body.

With my character complete, I begin adventuring. Taking in a view of Skyrim from the edge of a rock, the world feels huge. As I venture closer and visit people in towns and cities, the game comes to life. When players talk to other characters, they're not just standing around. They might be engaged in other tasks, which makes these towns feel more vibrant.

My first stop is the town of Riverwood, where I assist a blacksmith in crafting an iron dagger and leather helmet. It's a quick lesson in smithing -- from forging and sharpening, to tanning leather -- which players will need to learn to improve their weapons, armor and other items.

Skyrim introduces the Elder Scrolls series to Radiant Story, a dynamic system that adds random encounters. They can range from a young girl inquiring about your purchases at a food market to a thief jumping in front of you and demanding your gold and gear.

The character menu breaks down into four parts: Skills, Items, Map and Magic. Items are organized by type, and players have a limit on how much weight they can carry.

When players level up, they can upgrade their Health, Magic or Stamina, then bolster one of their skills. Skills are represented by a constellation, with players looking to the sky at each one.

Abilities range from improvements to blocking, one-handed and two-handed combat to destruction and conjuration spells.


[2]An Argonian male, one of several races players can choose for their character in 'The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.'CAPTIONBethesda SoftworksA larger dungeon near town delivers my first taste of combat. Players can use any combination of items in their left and right hands, from wielding two daggers to a sword and shield. Most of the time, I fought with a Flames spell and steel mace in my left and right hands, each controlled by the left and right triggers respectively.



A key plus to Skyrim controls is the Favorites option. Players can select items and weapons they use regularly and add them as a Favorite. Then, pushing up on the directional pad brings up the Favorites menu to let players switch. In this menu, players can also map loadouts to the left and right D-pad inputs. This served me well as I switched from my mace and magic to a two-handed sword.

Fighting off enemies such as giant spiders and undead Draugrs is gratifying. The dungeon featured a room with a floor trigger that swung a giant, spiked gate forward. After unknowingly stepping on the stone and nearly impaling myself, I find a couple Draugrs and lure them with a fire attack. They follow me to the next room, and one of them is slammed into the wall after triggering the trap.

Having successfully escaped the dungeon, I travel to Whiterun and my eventual battle with the dragon. After several attempts, I carefully dodge dragon attacks while picking it apart with the longbow, as other soldiers continue to whittle down its health. The dragon can't fly anymore, and when he nears death, I leap off a stairway and finish it off with a swipe of the longsword.

When players kill dragons, they absorb their energy and unlock special abilities called Shouts. Throughout Skyrim are walls with writings in dragon language. My earlier dungeon run leads me to the first word for a Shout that pushes back and stuns enemies, which unlocks after absorbing the dragon's soul.

Based on the demo, Skyrim feels epic. Although I accomplished quite a bit during this brief time, there were still countless sections of Skyrim I wanted to explore. It's too easy to simply get lost in the world of Skyrim and explore, much like previous Elder Scroll titles and other Bethesda games such as Fallout 3.

The game launches Nov. 11 for PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Game Hunters will post a full review of Skyrim next week.