Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind is an award winning, Game of the Year RPG for the PC and X-Box. I bought the X-Box version because I heard that it was such an amazing game, and it is, or at least some of it is.
The world of Morrowind is designed for exploration. The game designers made it an expansive place with lots of interesting things to see and interact with. It seems to be about as much of a sandbox as you can get out of a videogame. The graphics are top notch, at least they were. This unfortunately means that the X-Box has a hard time managing it. Load times take forever, and it has a tendency to be jerky, and even crash.
Character creation is another area where you can tell they put a lot of time into it. There are a wide variety of races and classes to choose from. There is also a lot of customization that you can do with the way your character appears. The options are so wide that it can be hard to pick.
Unfortunately movement and combat show just how much they tried to cram into this game, as these aspects both suffer. Movement is ok, but it’s possible to get your character stuck on things like bushes, a patch of grass, or doorhandles. There is a jumping option, but I can’t say that I ever found it very useful except as a way to become unstuck.
Combat involves getting your target in your cross hairs, and swinging. It’s fiddly, and I really disliked it. There wasn’t any option (that I could discover) for any alternate attacks, and the standing there trading blows was not only fiddly, but boring. At least in many other games where you stand there and wack on each other it at least looks interesting. The lack of a good tutorial didn’t help it any either. I can’t remember the last game I played that didn’t have a solid combat tutorial. The same process of lining your target in the cross-hairs and clicking is used for interacting with things. Be it a door you want to open or an item you want to pick up. The process is still fiddly, but picking flowers or grabbing a torch isn’t likely to get you killed!
Interacting with people generally involves a LOT of reading. The more you talk to people and learn things, the more options you open up for later conversations. Unfortunately there is so much information that it’s hard to keep track of it, even with the journal.
After trying it out several times, reading walk-throughs, and other things online, I was left with the simple conclusion that while Morrowind is a fascinating game, it isn’t the game I’m looking for. What I want is more Knights of the Old Republic. I’ve played both, and Jade Empire, and for an RPG it hits everything I’m looking for. I’m finding Fable to be interesting and fairly engrossing as well. Seeing that I don’t have a whole lot of time to spend playing videogames, I find myself pretty picky about what gets my attention. Morrowind had its chance, and then some.