The DLC Report: Skyrim DLCs -Heathfire
Updated: Jul 21
Each DLC will have its own little report. In this one I will examine the creative and family making tool: Hearthfire.
Hearthfire is (as mentioned previously) a building tool. You are able to craft your own home with your own two hands. You are also be allowed to adopt children. All of these are rather neat little features that I will go into with some depth. However I will not lie that there is something...lacking with the end result.
Won’t someone please think of the children?
Hearthfire allows you to complete the family unit by adopting a max of two children. This is regardless of the fact that multiple orphans are looking for a home. There is no reason for this restriction, (outside engine reasons maybe) as you can corner the housing market. Multiple mansions that cannot be filled up with children, there is no financial punishment for having too many children.
You just can’t have more than two. The adoption process is strange as well. Both times, kids just came up to me and asked me if I wanted to be their dad (please don’t jump to conclusions). All I had to do was say yes and I adopted a child. It is rather hilarious in execution as a result.
But once you have the kids, it quickly becomes apparent that your adopted moppets have all the personality of a random number generator. Every time you come home they greet and perform the following: ask for money/ gifts/ if they can adopt a pet. You can tell them to do their: chores/play outside. There are no differing outcomes, just the illusion of management. There is no consequence for being a bad father or any change in behaviour. Child adopting is a nice idea. But in practice, it is as shallow as paddling pool.
Building a house
There are three homesteads up for grabs. After purchasing the respective lands you can start building your own house. That does sound rather fun, crafting your own unique house without the restrictions of the base game. The problem is that acquiring resources is neither practically difficult nor engaging.
Building is less about skill of crafting the perfect house. But rather gathering enough resources before pressing a button. All the management and skill of one those mobile games as a result. Just with prettier lighting, along with the grindy tedium of said mobile games. It’s not bad, just unremarkable and boring.
Hearthfire is underwhelming. a DLC of missed opportunities that could have added something great. Instead we have a grindy DLC that feels undercooked. I wish there was more skill with construction. Why were the policies of adopting children so arbitrarily restrictive? Why were the children little more than robots in colourful costumes? I suspect it is just Bethesda being Bethesda and failing to achieve an idea’s full potential. Consider picking up if you want to kill a lot of time.