22.07.2016 at 16:46 pm Enderal is a first-class total conversion to Skyrim and feels like a full-game. In our test, we summarize the most important aspects of the successful rolling game without spoiling a lot. Why the Mod deserved our Award Editors’ Choice, writes editor Stefan Weiss.
We are plagued with nightmares with the accusation of having best-loved our parents and sister. A malicious disease called Red Madness pulls through the country and ensures that previously peaceful citizens become morose Scheusalen. And as if that were not enough, war and the imminent downfall of a whole civilization create fear and terror. Welcome to the gloomy and sometimes disturbing fantasy scenario of Enderal, probably the most intensive and elaborate Mod project for The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim.
The young and ambitious Mod developer team Sure AI from Munich has put in almost four and a half years almost 30,000 working hours into its total conversion and the one notes Enderal every second. Total conversion means that the modders are using the Skyrim technical basic framework, but have expanded and filled it with their own content. The result is, in principle, a Skyrim 2.0, because the extensive modification is the full-price roll game by Bethesda loose in the bag. The latter, by the way, remains untouched, Enderal does not cost you a cent!
The setting is made by Sure AI itself, the world of rolling games Vyn, equipped with completely own mythology, peoples and stories. Enderal is one of several continents in Vyn, with several climatic zones. In the game this is reflected accordingly and so its fantastically designed areas. Picturesque coastal sections and icy mountain regions alternate with jungle, forest and deserts. Farms, villages, fortresses and the medieval city center called Ark, built into the rocks, create a harmonious playing environment.
Even if basic elements of Skyrim are always recognizable, Sure AI has been able to give the world its own painting, and this is to be taken figuratively. Be it the clearly improved textures, the numerous object details, the vegetation and water presentation or the first-class lighting effects, Enderal presents itself all round as a chic and attractive rolling game.
Even if the total conversion already offers a round impression alone, Enderal scores above all with his outstandingly staged quest stories and the convincing world, which has a long playing time. Even those who concentrate only on the main story are well served for 25 to 30 hours and are confronted with unusual ideas.
So your character is magiebegabt, but the thing has a hook. You’ll see it as soon as you look at the hero screen. In addition to classical attributes such as life points, mana and endurance, there is so-called Arcanist fever. This determines the mental health of the character. Certain spells and potions make the fever soar. Even in magical places, which can be recognized by the blue glow, this condition worsens if you stay there too long. What is involved with this disease and how to deal with it is not only playfully relevant but also part of the main story. Tips for incoming mages can be found by the way in the linked Special.
One of your magical talents is the ability to experience visions of the past which are strangely connected with the impending end of human civilization in Enderal. In the city of Ark, you are trying to find solutions for this, and join the Mysterious Guardian Order of the Temple of the Sun. In many parts of the story, Enderal is pleasingly unconventional, holding up twists and surprises that go under the skin – great. The issues facing Sure AI in Enderal are not always easy to digest high-fantasy food, but that’s just fine. More than once, we stop, feel the “lump in the throat”, think about why history is developing in one way or another and how we should decide. Often it is about issues such as one’s own transience, life and death, as well as the rise and fall of a whole civilization. Sounds gloomy and that is it over long stretches as well. Nevertheless, this is almost never exaggerated flat or stereotypical, but is simply staged intelligently. Hat off for this and from us the reference to the “big ones in the business”, here is time in the storytelling to the tutoring bank.
The extensive main plot is accompanied by numerous side quarters, with which the play time can be at least doubled. Billboards offer head-money orders, conversations with NPCs provide us with ordinary bring-and-take services. However, there are many good and well-rehearsed stories for such standard tasks. For example, if we are in the city of Ark as an animal gathering and chasing the flight paths of certain birds in the sky. Thus we manage to find the well-hidden nests. Or how about discussing poetry metaphors in the Adelsviertel with the somewhat detached poet of Mith? Particularly successful are the secondary tasks, which make us before decisions. It is, for example, up to us whether we agree to the unscrupulous Braumeister’s deal in Ark, which wants to economically outgrow its wine competitor. In another place, in a dungeon, we gather a peasant who has joined bandits out of necessity to raise the necessary lease for his country. In any case, he carries with us the plausible and comprehensible. It is left to us to believe or not and to determine his future destiny.