Skyrim is the probably the best game I played in 2011. Granted, I didn’t play all the winter ‘blockbusters’ (who had the time for that?), but out of the games I played last year Skyrim stands tall. Well, Portal 2 and Dead Space 2 are right up there too – don’t make me choose!
When I bought Skyrim I decided to play it on Xbox 360, even though I also have a decent PC and a PS3. Its pretty obvious why I avoided the PS3 version, but I also shunned the PC version even though its likely it would perform much better. Why? With games like Skyrim on PC I can tend to obsess over tweaking performance, looking for patches, mods, searching forums etc. I wanted to take a different route and just play the damn game and it seemed like the Xbox 360 version would be the best way to do that.
Fast-forward 45 hours later into Skyrim. Contrary to many other players (especially on PS3 and PC) I’ve encountered very few bugs and have been having a great time. But I’ve also been having a progressively harder and harder time staying patient during Skyrim’s extensive loadtimes on Xbox 360. Its gotten to the point where I’m considering buying the PC version and transferring my saves over. And yes, I have installed Skyrim to the HDD. Sometimes I can feel my life slipping through my fingers as I wait, watching an intricate model of a dragon spinning in space as Skyrim loads assets interminably.
So I conceived a project to see just how much of my life I’m truly wasting. The project is twofold: first, to figure out if I’m getting maximum performance from my Xbox 360; and second, to play a few hours in Skyrim and objectively measure how much time I sit staring at a load screen.Continue Reading