Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Werewolf or Vampire?
It is easy to question whether or not Skyrim will live up to the hype and praise that it has been subject to for the last few months. It is also easy to question whether or not it lives up to the previous Elder Scrolls game, Oblivion. After going to Gamestop at 9:30 PM and waiting for the midnight release of the game I can most definitely say that it most definitely lives up to the hype and deserves the praise of it's many fans. For those who already know this and have the game, you may realize that there is a new option in the game, to become a werewolf. This article will weight thew pros and cons of both and ultimately say which one I ended up choosing based upon them.
First of all, in order to become a werewolf you need to join and complete quests in the companion's guild (located in Whiterun). When you become a werewolf you get a from called beast form. You can change into beast form whenever you wish (once per day) but it only lasts 150 seconds (although 30 seconds and 50 health can be added by devouring corpses) but below are the pros and cons of being a werewolf (all listed as "human form" go into effect during both human and beast form),
Pros: Immunity to disease (human form), max health increase (100 points), max stamina increase (100 points), increased speed (faster than horses), wolves treat you as an ally, any crimes you commit as a werewolf do not add to your bounty as a human, you get increased melee damage, improved dexterity (jump a lot farther), and you can get special abilities called howls (there are three, one gives fear to enemies level 25 and below for 30 seconds, one detects life in a large area around your character for 60 seconds, and the last one summons two wolves to fight with you; you get these howls through companion quests).
Cons: You cannot receive a bonus from being rested while in human form, and while you are in werewolf form: you cannot pick up any items (this includes looting corpses), all human form powers, weapons, and armor are unusable in werewolf form and vice versa, you cannot talk, citizens are scared of you (they either flee or attack you on sight), and if anyone sees you transform it is considered a major crime.
Playing as a werewolf: The best part about being a werewolf is the fact that you can still play the game however you want, you just have the added ability of transforming into a werewolf. Play style can vary based on what you plan doing as a werewolf but you are pretty much able to do whatever you want, just be careful of humans seeing you transform in and out of werewolf form.
Vampirism; a disease contracted from other vampires; one that must be helped or fed before it gets out of control. You can choose to be one of these blood suckers by allowing yourself to be attacked by one of them until you contract the disease (10% chance each time they use drain life). The vampires in Skyrim are much different than those in Oblivion, but as usual there are four stages of vampirism and the pros and cons differ with each stage.
Pros: Immunity to disease, immunity to poison, illusion spells do more damage (25%), you are harder to detect (only while sneaking; 25%), resistance to frost (25% multiplied by the stage you are at), and there are an array of new vampire powers (vampire's sight allows you to see in dark environments, vampiric drain saps life from your opponent (damage=stage+1), vampire's servant allows you to reanimate a creature for 60 seconds (the higher the stage the stronger the creatures/people you can reanimate), vampire's seduction keeps level 8 and lower enemies from fighting and fleeing, and lastly embrace of shadows allows you to turn invisible for 180 seconds).
Cons: People hate you when you are in stage 4 and will attack you, when outdoors during the day health, magicka, and stamina are all decreased and do not regenerate (15 multiplied by the stage), weakness to fire 25% multiplied by the stage, and you will need to feed on humans to keep on a low stage otherwise you cannot interact with humans (this leads to making your own weapons, armor, and potions.
Playing as a vampire: You should travel at night and explore dungeons during the day. If you plan on being stage four all of the time get used to making your own equipment and you might want to own a house so that you can refill you health during the day (and you will get the rested bonus that werewolves cannot get). Also carry around potions of fire resistance at all times.
After writing this and reviewing all of the pros and cons myself I have decided to become a werwolf because it will not affect my characters play style, I can travel faster, and I can slaughter a town and not get in trouble for it. Hopefully this tutorial helped you make your decision between werewolf and vampire and hopefully you are happy with it (if not both are curable). I will be posting more tutorials about decisions in the world of Skyrim please feel free to comment about anything that you feel needs a tutorial and I will be happy to make it.