So I head “Home” to the Dark Brotherhood sanctuary and my new family, now it’s time to take on my first real contracts. Three names, ordinarily very easy, when I did it before it was simple; fast travel, stealth kill, repeat. This time it would be more complex, and actually more interesting. First up, a hobo living in a dilapidated house, no problem, except is seems impossible to kill him out of earshot of the towns guards, even with a sneak kill my claws are only able to take off a fraction of health, in the end I remember what my friend in the sanctuary said to me, to paraphrase “Sometimes you just have to do your time, we’ve all been through it.” So rather than run and have a huge bounty looming over my head, I surrender to the guards and do my time. Next up, some guy working at a mill, I walk into town expecting to find his name on a house door, instead I overhear a conversation about how my target had “disappeared without a trace” and that “No one had a clue as to where he was”, how the hell was I gonna find him now. No one in town wanted to talk to me about him to I took to searching the surrounding area, his friends can’t have looked hard for him because I found him in the far off land of 20 yards down the road. Really? You abandoned your life in the mill and set up camp less than a minutes walk away. I’m glad I get to kill you. My final kill went much more conventionally, a simple break in and murder in her sleep was all I needed.
With the rookie stuff out of the way, it was time to start a real mission. I stole a horse and rode off west of Windhelm in search of a dwemer ruin. The ruin I found, was not the right one. I tried fighting but was quickly out matched, it didn’t help that my horse was being attacked as well. Actually, the horse getting involved did and didn’t help. The bandits seemed so hell bent on killing the horse that they mostly ignored me. I didn’t know whether to be offended or relieved, so I lit ’em up with the flames spell, the bandits and the horse. Only now my faithful steed was coming for me, neighing and bucking, I could barely hurt it and it was killing me quicker than even the bandits could. I ran circles around the ruins but it was unrelenting. Fearing death by my own stolen horse I tried the only thing I could think of, I mounted the horse, and it worked. Once I got off again the beast had forgotten completely it’s vendetta against me now it was time for the two of us to unite against the bandits. They didn’t stand a chance. After all that, it was a simple matter of finding the right location running in and killing my target and I was done.
I’m seeing more now some of the potentials and drawbacks of this challenge, it’s kind of fun taking things slowly, making every little quest more of an event, rather than sprinting through every mission just following the waypoints. I also seem to be running into more interesting characters and discovering new things. Whereas I’d normally just fast travel straight to my goal, I even found myself completing misc missions without prompting, example; someone asked me to deliver an urn to a priest at the shrine of Arkay, and whilst traveling in Falkreath I happened across that shrine, and thought, “where is that priest then” I saw a guy who appeared to be preaching and it was the right guy, he even gave me another quest to go on. It was good to think I actually found the guy and didn’t just teleport to his doorstep. I felt like I was helping people out, not just grinding some bland fetch quest.
I have had my doubts about it though, I for a time wanted to break the no weapons rule. Turns out you cannot get a bound dagger (which I planned on using for sneak attacks) only bound swords and axes, and you can only buy the books or find them in random loot. I came around in the end and have yet to break the rule. I now think it’s good that my character can never get a dagger, it will prevent me from ever exploiting the 30x damage sneak attack, that ability really killed off the challenge in my last game to the point where I could one-shot-kill blood dragons. The way I am now is better, making do with whatever I have, I kinda wish I had more than claws, a shield and flames, but that’s part of the challenge.,And someday, maybe, I’ll stumble across a conjure sword spell book.