adds roughly 10 – 12 hours worth of content to a game already bursting at the seams with things to do. According to my Raptr profile, I’ve sunk nearly 138 hours into Skyrim
already, and still had a massive 20+ list of quests waiting for me upon my return.
Any character level 10 or higher can begin Dawnguard after speaking to a town guard, who tells you about the re-emergence of the vampire-slaying faction. From here, you can seek out the order's leader, who sets you on a quest eventually leading to the revelation the vampires are plotting to blot out the sun using an Elder Scroll. From here, you’re given the option of stopping them, or joining them, effectively offering two completely different quest lines.
The setup is similar to the "Civil War" quests in Skyrim; you have to join one or the other. Of the two factions, the vampires are slightly more interesting than playing as the Dawnguard. Vampire quests offer more interesting quest goals, while the Dawnguard mostly relegates you to a series of fetch quests. Vampires also get a set of cool powers, while the Dawnguard only gets a crossbow. The new weapon is powerful, but only if you’ve invested in the Archery skill tree. Otherwise, it is useless.
Both quests are very linear. While there’s the chance Dawnguard adds some great new side quests I haven’t stumbled upon yet, the main quest line lacks the open feel of Skyrim’s quests. There are attempts to integrate the content better – such as random vampire and Dawnguard attacks – everything seems set off from the rest of the world.
On the plus side, some of the later battles are massive in scope; you just have to get there. Dawnguard also tosses in the option to change your character’s face – something I lamented not having in my Skyrim review.