Bethesda has recently announced that they will not be making any more expansions for The Elder Schools V: Skyrim. Therefore, it's time to look back over the past year and analyze our favorite additions to one of the greatest games of this generation.
And thus, we shall decide which was our favorite.
You side with either the Vampires or the Vampire Hunters, and are in a race against the opposing faction to obtain Auriel's Bow. This DLC also adds the Vampire Lord, an upgrade to the standard Vampire that makes it more mage-friendly while not really sacrificing anything, making it a good choice for thieves and mages alike. Both the Vampire Lord and the Werewolf also get their own perk tree. And, of course, we cannot forget the introduction of crossbows, Dragonbone weapons, and the ability to change your appearance even after character creation. The followers you get aren't too shabby, either. Three of them have no level cap, but the main follower, while capping at level 50, is essential, has powerful spells, and can make you a Vampire Lord even if you sided with Dawnguard.
Morthal, Dawnstar, and Falkreath all allow you to buy a plot of land if you are the thane and own this DLC. On the plot of land, you can construct a house of your own design. If you want to give each house its own distinct purpose, you'll probably wind up with your three houses serving the roles of Family House, Alchemy Laboratory, and Armory House. If you have a bedroom with appropriate storage, you may adopt a child or two, as well.
After getting attacked by cultists, you find yourself in a rivalry with the first and most powerful Dragonborn, Miraak. This DLC is the only one that gives you access to a new overworld. The DLC takes place on the island of Solstheim, in Morrowind. It's a decent size, with the southern side of the island offering a nice change in climate. You also get access to the All-Maker stones, which are like Standing Stones, except after you use their power, you have to re-activate the stone. In addition, you get many new passive abilities from side quests, a powerful new enchantment, new shouts, and the new weapon and armor material Stalhrim. This was definitely the meatiest of the DLCs.
While you didn't have to pay for it, I feel that Patch 1.9 offered enough content to consider it its own expansion of sorts. There are two main features offered. The first is offering a new difficulty setting higher than Master, known as Legendary. And yes, it is very difficult. The second feature is a new game mechanic known as Legendary Skills. When you train a skill to 100, you can now make it Legendary, which is a "prestige" system of sorts. You reset the skill to 15 and get your perks back that you spent on the skill. This allows you to continue training the skill, and removes the overall level cap of the game. Why is this even in the same league as the others? It's free, so you are technically getting the most bang for your buck with this expansion.
Which was your favorite? I think we all know Dragonborn is going to get the most votes, but I'm still interested in seeing everyone's opinions. For me, it's close between Dawnguard and Dragonborn, but I'm going to have to go with Dragonborn, due to its extreme amount of extra powers and abilities it gives you.