10 Things Nobody Wants To Admit About The Elder Scrolls Games

9. The Puzzles Are An Afterthought


There are puzzles scattered through the series – used appropriately only on occasion – usually overlooked in favour of secondary elements, included mostly out of obligation.

Skyrim for instance, includes numerous puzzles in multiple dungeons, which usually involve matching symbols in order to open passageways, which – besides pulling levers to open doorways – might be the laziest idea of a puzzle ever conceived, requiring no thought whatsoever.

The puzzles themselves can be powered through using a process of elimination, rendering them a casual hindrance easily overcome, nothing more.

That said, there’s one exception – which can be found in the fourth instalment, Oblivion – in which the player is expected to uncover the location of a mysterious cult using information dispersed throughout four separate books. The quest is called ‘Path of Dawn’, and it’s everything the series should be striving to achieve.

Besides that, there are almost no puzzles worth mentioning in the entire series, which is a shame considering how much it would benefit from some actual complexity. Instead, dungeons are packed with countless, indeterminate enemies – which are easily dispersed – creating only a shallow sense of accomplishment.


Formerly an assistant editor, Richard's interests include detective fiction and Japanese horror movies.