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Sometimes it's hard to make good first impressions. In most cases, first impressions determine how people will judge you from then on. In Skyrim, this is no exception. You may be the last Dragonborn, but sometimes it's wise to just keep to yourself. Skyrim's a big and dangerous place, full of dangerous people. Here's a quick run through of how to avoid trouble.
Choose your race and perks wisely. Although the class styles of previous Elder Scrolls games are a thing of the past, make sure you think about how your chosen race is going to benefit from your particular playing style. Don't choose the khajiit if your choice is purely based on the fact you can't think of anything cooler than ripping things to shreds as a giant cat. You can't push in the analogue stick and sharpen your fists, but you are equipped with a spell that makes seeing dark dungeons a hell of a lot easier. Sounds like the ideal race for players who spend too much of their time skulking around in dark dungeons, doesn’t it? The absence of set class leveling means you level up according to your playing style, so make sure you take the time to level up the other skills you won’t develop naturally. How many of us played through Fallout: New Vegas without leveling up the unarmed skill, only to get our asses handed to us when the DLC content came out? There will be times when you find yourself out of your comfort zone. It's at times like these you'll have wished you leveled up those skills that you never thought you would have needed. This is Bethesda we’re talking about, after all; those guys always seem to be full of surprises when you least expect it.
This isn't limited to your usual combat skills either. Alchemy, cooking, smithing; all these things benefit you as a player, so make sure you can try and put some time aside to level them up. Smithing and alchemy create a sense of ease when you find yourself on a path of destruction and want to tear enemies from limb to limb. Fighting someone that looks flammable? Come prepared by casting a fire enchantment on your weapon. A high smithing level will see you creating stronger weapons and both skills see a quick route to making easy cash, and in Skyrim, cash is something you never want to be too short on. A high speech level is going to make obtaining money a lot easier, whilst lockpick and pickpocketing make it a LOT more fun.
Like nearly all Bethesda games, you’re pretty much granted a loose reign from the beginning of your quest. You’re free to do as you see fit. Too much freedom can sometimes lead to trouble. Randomly butchering the odd civilian now and again may seem hilarious to you, but it's obviously going to leave their friends and family distraught. A peaceful day in the family home has been ruined by a mad man playing tennis with fireballs in the front room. Make friends with the right people or it could be far too easy making enemies with the wrong ones. Joining certain guilds is going to have a dramatic impact on the NPCs' impressions of you. If you consider yourself the charismatic type who likes to be friendly with as many people as possible, maybe it’s best to avoid the Dark Brotherhood, who in traditional Dark Brotherhood fashion, will have you killing almost everything.
Enemies: everyone has them. Some are best avoided. While most enemies you encounter will attack you on sight, the bigger and more powerful ones will ignore your presence unless you feel a desire to make yourself known, mammoths and giants being one main example. Think about why they’re not attacking you. Look at your size compared to them. If your character’s a low level, it’s probably best to let them be on their way. Why not try and make some friends? You’re the last of the Dovahkiin, but that doesn’t mean you can kill dragons by just clicking your fingers. Sometimes you’ll find yourself needing help. Lure a dragon close enough to a nearby town and the locals will obviously want rid of it. As they say, many hands make light work. After the dragon and many of the town’s inhabitants are dead, convince yourself that they were doing it purely because you’re their friend. They were risking their lives to save their best Dovahkiin mate. Surely it had nothing to do with the impending annihilation of their town.