Oblivion: Try #2

As you may recall, I never got into Oblivion the same way I did Morrowind and Skyrim. I had assumed this was because all the characters look like weird squishy lumps that are all closely related to each other – regardless of what their race is (every race is squishy lump race). So, I installed Oblivion Character Overhaul to address this issue, and I am pretty happy with how everybody is looking now.

However, this has highlighted what is perhaps the real reason I didn’t get into Oblivion: the tutorial is a million hours long and it is super boring, which is actually foreshadowing for the game that I have yet to play. It seems obvious now, but I suppose when everybody is a horrifying uncanny valley clay monster, that can tend to obscure some lesser issues.

I don’t feel at all engaged or motivated in the whole run around the sewers while the Emperor is being attacked. The call to action is too blunt and faux-grandiose, the setting is uninteresting, and you are forced to spend hours running around on rails against your will.

Morrowind had an interesting setting and a mysterious slow build with a pacing that really drew you into the world and you started to feel like you lived there, and almost no tutorial to speak of. Skyrim had a rails-y tutorial much like Oblivion, but it was (thankfully) much shorter and it at least felt exciting.

So, I don’t know, we’ll see if I ever get around to playing Oblivion in earnest. The character overhaul was an improvement, and people *say* they love Oblivion and its quests, so maybe it just starts out rough and I’ll feel engaged eventually.

Fencing Épée

So my life has been kind-of-sort-of too scheduled and structured lately, what with every thing scheduled every single night of the week. The exact same week I switched to String Orchestra on Tuesday nights (versus Saturdays which I did before) is when we started fencing on Wednesday nights so… things have felt hectic. And of course we still have climbing/strength training on Monday nights, and then again on Friday nights… it is too much.

Fencing at Halberstadt's

That being said, I’ve always had an interest in fencing ever since I was young, so I’m glad I’ve finally gotten the chance to do it! It is a lot of fun. Doc and I decided to fence épée (bring it on, haters; for I know you are legion!) because it was what felt the most natural and was the most fun to us.

Fencing Épée

Anywhoo, even though we’ve been super busy, there isn’t really anything I’m willing to give up, so I guess I’ll just be busy then!

Although I’m sad that I’m coming up on two missed comics in a row 🙁

I gotta get back on track for my comics schedule.

Photos from Hornstrandir

Taking the ferry to Hornstrandir!
Taking the ferry to Hornstrandir!


As I mentioned previously, Doc and I got to do a 5-day backpacking trip in Hornstrandir! It was something I had been looking forward to for a long time, and it was very beautiful and spectacular and surreal – definitely worth it.

Hiking the Horn Loop Hornstrandir

We also got to see arctic foxes every day while we were there, so that was fun too.

Arctic Fox at Hornvík in Hornstrandir
An arctic fox scavenging on the beach for fish etc
Arctic Fox in Hornstrandir
A running arctic fox
Arctic fox footprints

And, of course, the scenery was absolutely gorgeous.

Hiking near Veiðileysufjörður in Hornstrandir
Doc hiking near a stream near Veiðileysufjörður
Streams near Veiðileysufjörður in Hornstrandir
A stream near Veiðileysufjörður
Hornvík in Hornstrandir
A distant view of the Horn from HornvÍk
Our campsite at Hornvík in Hornstrandir
Our campsite near Hornvík
The King and Queen of Cliffs as seen from the Horn
Lots of waterfalls in Hornstrandir. In Iceland, really. To quote Doc, “This whole country is just leaking water out of everywhere.”
King and Queen of Cliffs in Hornstrandir
The King and Queen of Cliffs

Hiking to the King and Queen of Cliffs in Hornstrandir

Camping in Hornstrandir
Rise and shine! (I’m not a morning person)
Alas, it was foggy on the day we visited the King and Queen of Cliffs. But that meant we had great weather when we hiked the Horn loop over Hornbjarg.
Oh and I should probably mention that you have to cross hundreds of streams in Hornstrandir. No trail in all of Hornstrandir does not involve at least 1 stream crossing. Some are deeper than others.


Hiking the Horn Loop in Hornstrandir
Doc admiring Hornbjarg whilst hiking the Horn Loop.


Flowers Overlooking Veiðileysufjörður in Hornstrandir
Taking a lunch break looking at Veiðileysufjörður


Stream in Hornstrandir
Just one of many stream crossings


Veiðileysufjörður in Hornstrandir
Beautiful Veiðileysufjörður


Waterfall in Hornstrandir
More waterfall


Waterfall and Stream in Hornstrandir
A very big stream crossing to get to the Horn Loop


Steinþórsstandur in Hornstrandir


Hiking the Horn Loop Hornstrandir
We made it ~halfway through the Horn Loop, to Hornbjarg!


Hiking the Horn Loop Hornstrandir
The amazing view of Hornvík from up on the Horn


Streams near Veiðileysufjörður in Hornstrandir
Streams near Veiðileysufjörður


Veiðileysufjörður in Hornstrandir
Waiting for the ferry in Veiðileysufjörður