Skyrim: Turn off your compass marker

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Yeah...but its a good idea to turn it off...it really does make a difference. You're not looking at the compass all the time (as one normally does) but at the WORLD. Way better.

If you need to know where you're going....use that shout that shows you the way to your current goal. Problem sorted!

EClaris:

Fappy:

Smeggs:
Also, I'm assuming you still allow yourself to check the map for large cities, yes? The entire story and quests are built around the compass, that's why Morrowind was sometime so frustrating because you could get totally lost searching for specific quest locations. I remember one quest where I had to find a fucking cave, I walked past the damn things at least three times.

Was it the cave outside of Pelagiad where you have to get that skull? Every time I replay the main quest I can never find that place.

I just had rage flash backs.

I also remember the one set of directions to get to that valley that was relevant to the main quest

"Go to the shoreline, turn and walk until you get to a pile of rocks, then turn again and go until you get to a tree then you'll be there!"

*piles of rocks and tress everywhere*

Or when they told you to use those trenches created by lava to guide you to a spot on the coast, pick the wrong one and the map is so big you have to walk another 5 minutes to your goal. Quest markers would've improved the game so to the OP no I will not do it on the grounds that getting lost is infuriating, if I want to explore I'll do it but I will not get lost like that again.

There is a mod that makes quest descriptions more detailed in journal. That should help you out http://skyrim.nexusmods.com/mods/11135

Bruenin:
someone turned the hud opacity to 0 so he couldn't see anything, it made sneaking really tense since he had to actually check and see if people were searching for him, and he had to develop a way to shoot the bow without the pointer and such

He also used the clarvoyance spell to find his quest things

the PeterP save :P

I expect you do, but... do you know who that is? It just seems odd that you didn't mention it...

*Turns off compass*
"Now, go and find this place called...I dunno....Scary Dungeon Cave."
"Cool! *Charges outside of Witerun, gets bored after ten minutes of having not one clue where to go*"

Seriously...in a lot of games, without the compass, you wouldn't ever get to where you need to go unless by sheer coincidence.

Tharwen:

Bruenin:
someone turned the hud opacity to 0 so he couldn't see anything, it made sneaking really tense since he had to actually check and see if people were searching for him, and he had to develop a way to shoot the bow without the pointer and such

He also used the clarvoyance spell to find his quest things

the PeterP save :P

I expect you do, but... do you know who that is? It just seems odd that you didn't mention it...

yeah... I don't know why I avoided using his name and stuff... I felt like it'd be weird or something, iunno :P

Bruenin:

Tharwen:

Bruenin:
someone turned the hud opacity to 0 so he couldn't see anything, it made sneaking really tense since he had to actually check and see if people were searching for him, and he had to develop a way to shoot the bow without the pointer and such

He also used the clarvoyance spell to find his quest things

the PeterP save :P

I expect you do, but... do you know who that is? It just seems odd that you didn't mention it...

yeah... I don't know why I avoided using his name and stuff... I felt like it'd be weird or something, iunno :P

Excellent. Move along, citizen.

Xan Krieger:

EClaris:

Fappy:

Was it the cave outside of Pelagiad where you have to get that skull? Every time I replay the main quest I can never find that place.

I just had rage flash backs.

I also remember the one set of directions to get to that valley that was relevant to the main quest

"Go to the shoreline, turn and walk until you get to a pile of rocks, then turn again and go until you get to a tree then you'll be there!"

*piles of rocks and tress everywhere*

Or when they told you to use those trenches created by lava to guide you to a spot on the coast, pick the wrong one and the map is so big you have to walk another 5 minutes to your goal. Quest markers would've improved the game so to the OP no I will not do it on the grounds that getting lost is infuriating, if I want to explore I'll do it but I will not get lost like that again.

My personal favorite was a quest to go over a hill and fight some mudcrabs. That was all your instructions - go over a hill, and fight some mudcrabs. No directions, no 'how far away from the city', no landmarks - just that the quest took place on the side of a hill that had Mudcrabs. I just... 30 minutes of searching and I just went 'fuck this' and blew up the city.

As for OP: I don't stare at the Compass 24-7; it's a little helpful thing, nothing more. Skyrim is FUCKING huge, so it's fairly easy to get lost - having the Compass there helps me not wander around the map for a half-hour looking for mudcrabs.
And hey, I'm pretty sure the people of Skyrim are pretty cheerful for that - I haven't destroyed any cities out of boredom due to not being able to find my quest target, so they get to live.

Smeggs:

Greni:
This is not a request, but an order.

I'm on my second playthrough in Skyrim.
I love these types of exploration games, no matter how shitty the storyline may be. Nevertheless on my first playthrough I always automatically stormed straight to the green/red arrow without a second thought, I experimented turning it off in my second one and I feel sort of free.

I will be looking through every crook and cranny looking for whatever object/person/enemy my devout quest journal sends me to, taking in all the details and taking in way more of the game then I did before. Considering I played nearly all the quests on an earlier playthrough it's remarkable how little I remember about the actual context of the quest while running from one arrow to the next. Now I have to read all the books and journals I find if I want to know where to go/what to do next with no little arrow helper holding my hand. Now I also stumble upon most of the little out-of-the-way details Bethesda developers like to put here and there.

So turn off your compass marker.

Post script: After I found out how remarkable change it was, I also turned off the not-yet-found-location-nearby sense the Dragonborn somehow possesses. That also improves the exploration feel of this game a lot.

Well, that's what you did.

I always explore the entire game thoroughly on my first playthrough. I have been literally to every corner of the map.

I don't feel constrained by having my compass up like you, apparently. The compass does not tell me where to go, it suggests where I go, and whether I feel like doing it then or going after three hours of dungeon crawling for new shouts depends on what I feel like. No little pointer is going to make me go anywhere in a free-roaming game if I don't feel like it.

That's always been my way as well. You really shouldn't take the compass directing you as a personal jab, its just there to be helpful.

Shanicus:

Xan Krieger:

EClaris:
I just had rage flash backs.

I also remember the one set of directions to get to that valley that was relevant to the main quest

"Go to the shoreline, turn and walk until you get to a pile of rocks, then turn again and go until you get to a tree then you'll be there!"

*piles of rocks and tress everywhere*

Or when they told you to use those trenches created by lava to guide you to a spot on the coast, pick the wrong one and the map is so big you have to walk another 5 minutes to your goal. Quest markers would've improved the game so to the OP no I will not do it on the grounds that getting lost is infuriating, if I want to explore I'll do it but I will not get lost like that again.

My personal favorite was a quest to go over a hill and fight some mudcrabs. That was all your instructions - go over a hill, and fight some mudcrabs. No directions, no 'how far away from the city', no landmarks - just that the quest took place on the side of a hill that had Mudcrabs. I just... 30 minutes of searching and I just went 'fuck this' and blew up the city.

As for OP: I don't stare at the Compass 24-7; it's a little helpful thing, nothing more. Skyrim is FUCKING huge, so it's fairly easy to get lost - having the Compass there helps me not wander around the map for a half-hour looking for mudcrabs.
And hey, I'm pretty sure the people of Skyrim are pretty cheerful for that - I haven't destroyed any cities out of boredom due to not being able to find my quest target, so they get to live.

My all time favorite lost moment is finding the mostly naked nord who had been tricked by a witch. "She must still be in this area" followed by an hour of running around with said mostly naked nord and not finding anything. A quest marker would've really helped there instead of me wasting an hour of my time lost.

Um...... no. I like having the compass marker. If ever I want to explore at my leisure I just ignore it or deactivate my current active quest in my quest log, but when I actually am on a quest I want to know where the fuck I'm supposed to go.

Working without compass / overlay map was the approach I took when recently replaying Assassin's Creed 2 a month ago, and I found the change it made was incredible. I was forced to really learn my way around the city, whether through the streets or by rooftop, and guide myself by landmarks. Sure, I'd consult the map to check progress ocassionally, but not having it as an ever-present crutch forced me to rely on my own sense of direction.

The end result was a far more engaging experience, and I found often that, instead of blazing in an as-the-bird-flies line straight to my target, I'd often enjoy keeping a low profile and walking through the winding streets to find my goal, because I'd learned my way around the city.

Ahh Morrowind, how I remember ye fondly...oh, and you Daggerfall

I'm confused why people seem to think the compass is some kind of evil task master? I personally love the 'Dovah Sense' for undiscovered locations. It actually massively increased the exploration I did as it's not uncommon for me to wander away from the questline to investigate a cave and thereby get close enough to notice another cave after which I notice a tower etc etc etc.

I think there's maybe four inches on the map not currently covered by explored locations now?

cbrichar:
Working without compass / overlay map was the approach I took when recently replaying Assassin's Creed 2 a month ago, and I found the change it made was incredible. I was forced to really learn my way around the city, whether through the streets or by rooftop, and guide myself by landmarks. Sure, I'd consult the map to check progress ocassionally, but not having it as an ever-present crutch forced me to rely on my own sense of direction.

The end result was a far more engaging experience, and I found often that, instead of blazing in an as-the-bird-flies line straight to my target, I'd often enjoy keeping a low profile and walking through the winding streets to find my goal, because I'd learned my way around the city.

That sounds awesome. I'm glad someone gets it. Morrowind was a bit like that. It was often hard as hell to find things, but traversing the world was much more engaging and rewarding. You were navigating by looking at what was in the world and relying on your knowledge of the layout.

It doesn't matter if you take frequent detours in Skyrim, that's not the point. At some point you are looking at that little white arrow to get where you need to go. You're not navigating by the lay of the land. You're not straining to see what comes next. You're not taking it all in. You're just following that damned arrow. You just go in a straight line until you hit an obstacle. And you don't feel accomplished for arriving at your destination. You didn't find it, you just followed the arrow. Once you've passed through that area you won't even remember it. That one little change took a lot of the substance out of exploring the world. Granted, I'm never lost now, but I don't think it's worth it. When I saw the red and green arrows in Oblivion I felt defeated or let down somehow. It just sucked a lot of the excitement out of exploring the map.

lord.jeff:

SmashLovesTitanQuest:
No.

Greni:
This is not a request, but an order.

I'm on my second playthrough in Skyrim.
I love these types of exploration games, no matter how shitty the storyline may be. Nevertheless on my first playthrough I always automatically storm-

No.

Quest markers can encourage exploration as much as they do discourage it. I can stray off the beaten path even when I really want to keep doing this quest and don't feel like getting lost.

I'm with this guy, I was so worried about losing my sense of direction when trying to complete a quest that I'd walk past forts and other dungeons thinking I'd check that out later and I never did, without quest markers I was forced to focus on only one quest at a time.

Not to mention all the quests are designed around the questmarker, meaning they give you no directions whatsoever. I love exploration and I love getting lost in RPGs, but trying to find something in Skyrim without a quest marker when the only direction you got from an NPC was "Follow da questmarker lol" is like trying to find a needle in a haystack, except the needle is invisible.

Reaper195:
*Turns off compass*
"Now, go and find this place called...I dunno....Scary Dungeon Cave."
"Cool! *Charges outside of Witerun, gets bored after ten minutes of having not one clue where to go*"

Seriously...in a lot of games, without the compass, you wouldn't ever get to where you need to go unless by sheer coincidence.

Yeah, that's if the game was designed around the compass as the crutch. It saves on voice acting and writing (Even if it's just one line "Go to the Scary Dungeon Cave; it's to the west of Solitude"... Then if you click on the option "Where is Solitude": "Oh, you follow the road to the West".

It's a little bit more vague and requires a little bit more exploration ("Is this the cave he was talking about? No."). Some people love it but most don't.

Fappy:

Smeggs:
Also, I'm assuming you still allow yourself to check the map for large cities, yes? The entire story and quests are built around the compass, that's why Morrowind was sometime so frustrating because you could get totally lost searching for specific quest locations. I remember one quest where I had to find a fucking cave, I walked past the damn things at least three times.

Was it the cave outside of Pelagiad where you have to get that skull? Every time I replay the main quest I can never find that place.

Im currently playing through again with mods. I installed a mod that removed the main quest and made the poor sod on the boat you started at be the Chosen one. And you can walk around doing whatever you want and sometimes see him walking for quest-location to quest-location doing the main quest xD.

Not to mention that the mods put the enviromental graphics of Morrowind on par with Skyrim.

Morrowind: 1 GB.
Enviroment Mods and Soundfiles: 6GB.

I mean, Holy crap. How many people are modding morrowind?! xD

Then you install the extra NPC's mod. Enhanced combat mod. Extra questsmod. Advantages/Disadvantages Daggerfall character creation mod.

And bam, a game with graphics on par with Skyrim. A bit worse off combat but overall a solid modernlooking old RPG.

Greni:
-snip-

That's actually not a bad idea at all. I was thinking of buying (and playing, of course) Skyrim again for PC (had it for PS3 first), and maybe I'll do that. Skyrim itself is quite a shallow game when it comes down to it. An ocean with the depth of a puddle, I've heard it called, but exploring has always been the major strength of this game. This might make it even better.

My only problem might be that I've played the game so often that I know exactly where everything is.

If the compass is removed from the HUD, does it still exist on the map? It sounds like a good idea. There is something unsatisfying about just following the marker, but at the same time I don't particularly wish to fumble around mountain ranges for hours looking for an easy-to-miss doorway. If I can reference direction and general vicinity from a map, I'd be quite happy to turn off the marker...particularly inside where it really is quite immersion breaking.

Anyway, I'm still a short way away from starting my second playthru (or technically continuing it...saved just outside Helgin, before Riverwood at the start), waiting for Dawnguard on PC to come out. Currently looking for fun mods I'll play about with when the time comes. Summonable mounts, followers, flying mods maybe...feel free to recommend me any interesting ones. Obviously the best Skyrim mod ever made needs no one to point it out.

I'm on playthrough 3 and while I wouldn't turn the compass off, I turn HUD transparency down to about 50% so I only look at it when I really have to. I also turn off the cross-hair and floating-point markers, because the game's just too mundanely easy with them on.

It's one thing to have a compass marker referencing the direction you have to go, and another thing to have a floating augmented reality-style marker seen through walls, above an objects head, in the 3D world.

And I've had it like that since the end of tutorial dungeon on playthrough 1. Certainly makes the game more entertaining for me every time. I couldn't think of going back to having them on.

I dont need to listen to you. Anyway, i turn it off when Im exploring, but when Im trying to get shit done, like a quest, then i turn it on

Bruenin:
someone turned the hud opacity to 0 so he couldn't see anything, it made sneaking really tense since he had to actually check and see if people were searching for him, and he had to develop a way to shoot the bow without the pointer and such

He also used the clarvoyance spell to find his quest things

the PeterP save :P

Damn it! Ninja'd.

You can also not use clairvoyance, which is even more fun.
Plus combat is a lot more tense because you can die any second without noticing.

It's fun to screw around in, but I barely make any quest progress. If I want to do quests, I'll go with one of my other characters, but if I want to just explore and have weird adventures, occasionally (but rarely) finishing a quest, I'll use Peter P.

Greni:
This is not a request, but an order.

I'm on my second playthrough in Skyrim.
I love these types of exploration games, no matter how shitty the storyline may be. Nevertheless on my first playthrough I always automatically stormed straight to the green/red arrow without a second thought, I experimented turning it off in my second one and I feel sort of free.

I will be looking through every crook and cranny looking for whatever object/person/enemy my devout quest journal sends me to, taking in all the details and taking in way more of the game then I did before. Considering I played nearly all the quests on an earlier playthrough it's remarkable how little I remember about the actual context of the quest while running from one arrow to the next. Now I have to read all the books and journals I find if I want to know where to go/what to do next with no little arrow helper holding my hand. Now I also stumble upon most of the little out-of-the-way details Bethesda developers like to put here and there.

So turn off your compass marker.

Post script: After I found out how remarkable change it was, I also turned off the not-yet-found-location-nearby sense the Dragonborn somehow possesses. That also improves the exploration feel of this game a lot.

Yes. And no.

I am in complete agreement with you that quest markers take away from the sense of discovery in games like this, and it's kinda immersion breaking to be told you need to find a lost and hidden temple and then be given it's exact GPS coordinates by the quest giver - but modern games are built around quest markers.

Older games with no quest markers would give you directions to your objective, such as 'Leave X heading west, and travel trough the canyon until you reach emerge into the foothills. When the road forks into the lowlands head north, and continue towards Y keeping your eyes towards the hills to the northeast. After you pass a clump of blackened trees a small path will lead up into the hills, Z is up that path.' whereas now games with quest markers built into them just state your objective as 'Go to Z'. It is impossible to navigate with no directional aids to let you know where you're meant to be going.

As for turning my quest marker off when I've reached the ruin I need to search, I do that already. Also, try the new Dawnguard expansion as many other people have said. The quests in that are more based around freeform exploration than quest markers, and so deciphering clues in journals and interpreting crude hand drawn maps that don't update your main map are the order of the day. I'd state which missions I mean but, hey, spoilers.

What? Turn off the "unexplored area" sense? But then I might miss a totally cool area on the way to the objective or just stomping about! Find one area, get pointed to a dozen more.

Seriously, that was the main exploration drive for me. Who the hell knows what that pip might be? Maybe somewhere with a dragon priest? Hell, my primary objective was to find every damn one of those guys when I found the wooden mask and put two and two together. Managed to explore and clear the entire map before I got Dragonrend because of that. Too bad that particular shout woulda been far FAR more useful a hundred hours earlier.

Smeggs:
Also, I'm assuming you still allow yourself to check the map for large cities, yes? The entire story and quests are built around the compass, that's why Morrowind was sometime so frustrating because you could get totally lost searching for specific quest locations. I remember one quest where I had to find a fucking cave, I walked past the damn things at least three times.

Then again, 99% of the time if you got lost in Morrowind, it was entirely your fault. Most of the instructions were really detailed.

I use the map markers in the dungeons to make sure I explore every part not on the correct route first!

I turned it off once for a dungeon, and accidentally missed a load of the cave because I had taken all the correct turns first time!

Skyrim doesn't blatantly point out correct paths/vs non correct paths like most games do, so using the marker is the best way of making sure that caves are explored to the fullest!

Anthraxus:
Isn't the game built around the quest compass though ?

Meaning, the npcs don't give you enough detailed information on where you should actually be going.

Not like in Morrowind, no.

I like the idea of this thread, nice on OP. Perhaps you should play Morrowind.

Well here's the thing. I have a crap TV and...not all of Skyrim can fit on it... see where I am going with this? I haven't been able to use that compass once because it's hardly even on my screen I mean I can just make out the white line at the very edge of the top of my screen and some lines on it but just barely.

So.
Clairvoyance huh? How about that spell? Clairvoyance...yup...

But really, this is silly, your addiction to following red arrows is irrelevant, I'm perfectly capable of meandering towards my objective at the pace of a mudcrab thanks. In fact, like any true RPG gamer, I tend to avoid any serious quests like the plague. I mean, take the very first thing I did in Skyrim, once I was free of the tutorial dungeon.

I turned around and ran back through the burning town, to the south and then the west and ended up in Falkreath after fighting some Draugr in a mountainside dungeon.

YOU might need to turn it off for freedom, other people are capable of finding that freedom on their own ;)

Or you could just take some time to explore and not bother with any quests.

I don't like wandering around not knowing where I'm supposed to go.

Nikolaz72:
Im currently playing through again with mods. I installed a mod that removed the main quest and made the poor sod on the boat you started at be the Chosen one. And you can walk around doing whatever you want and sometimes see him walking for quest-location to quest-location doing the main quest xD.

You *have* to explain this now!

Nikolaz72:
Not to mention that the mods put the environmental graphics of Morrowind on par with Skyrim.

Morrowind: 1 GB.
Environment Mods and Soundfiles: 6GB.

I mean, Holy crap. How many people are modding morrowind?! xD

This too!! Don't say this and not explain! Details details!

The_Blue_Rider:
I dont need to listen to you.

Are you refusing to follow a direct order Private? That's a court martial offence.

DoPo:

Anthraxus:
Isn't the game built around the quest compass though ?

Meaning, the npcs don't give you enough detailed information on where you should actually be going.

There is a mod to fix that (unsurprisingly) - it adds more information to the quest log, so it doesn't sounds retarded "I was told of X [no information to where it is but still a big arrow points at it]". It's called [b] Better Quest Objectives[/i] you're welcome.

Thank you muchly. I've bookmarked the mod for when I (finally) pick up Skyrim later.

I need all the help I can get on Skyrim! I'm not turning off nothing!

Alternatively, I'll play the game however I like, you play how you like, and we'll both leave each other alone over the subject.

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