ByMarcus O'Shea, writer at Creators.co
Resident RPG nerd and SoulsBorne fanatic. Can be spotted by their floofy hair.
Marcus O'Shea

There's nothing quite like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. The story, that feeling of freedom, the massively detailed world, the ability to break the enchanting system over your knee and use your godlike power to collect every Skooma Pipe—the possibilities are almost limitless! But sometimes, just sometimes, we need a little change of scenery.

10 Games Like 'Skyrim' Every Open-World Fan Should Play

Whether you want a game that lets you finally be one of the dragons that's tormented you for so long, or you've come to the conclusion that a fireball's no substitute for a grenade launcher, we've got you covered in your search for open world games that capture a little bit of that magic.

1. 'Dragon's Dogma'

Yes, you can cut every head off that bad boy [Credit: Capcom]
Yes, you can cut every head off that bad boy [Credit: Capcom]
  • Developer: Capcom
  • Publisher: Capcom
  • Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows

Dragon's Dogma gives you all the open world fun of Skyrim with a big dose of classic Capcom weirdness thrown in for good measure. The game boasts one of the most in-depth character creators in , and how you design your characters has an effect on their in-game abilities! Big guys can carry more, but their stamina drains faster; small, light characters can fit through little spaces, but can get tossed around like a rag doll by bigger and stronger enemies.

If you loved the dragon battles of Skyrim, features one of the most fun and epic combat systems invented for big monster battles. Players can leap and latch onto larger enemies, clambering over the hides of chimeras and griffons to hack at their vulnerable weak points. No more will melee characters have to suffer the indignity of plinking at dragons with arrows until they choose to come hang out on the ground. Now you can have an ally launch you onto their belly when they swoop down to toast your buns.

The most magical moment... Setting yourself on fire, jumping on a griffon and hacking its wings to pieces while it flies around trying to shake you off.

2. The Gothic Series

I'm not saying you should play it for the T-Rex, I'm just letting you know there's a T-Rex and letting you decide. [Credit: JoWood Entertainment]
I'm not saying you should play it for the T-Rex, I'm just letting you know there's a T-Rex and letting you decide. [Credit: JoWood Entertainment]
  • Developer: Piranha Bytes
  • Publishers: JoWooD Entertainment, Deep Silver, Koch Media, Aspyr Media
  • Platform: Microsoft Windows, mobile, Xbox 360, PS3, PlayStation 4

Gothic has always been a bit of a weird cousin to The Elder Scrolls. It's a little buggier, a little clunkier, but there's something so very charming about it. Boasting a similar open world structure to Skyrim and a difficulty that can occasionally put to shame, Gothic sets you loose in a world filled with hostile factions, gives you a slight pat on the bum and says, "Go get 'em," before wandering off for a pack of smokes while you get knifed by a goblin.

Gothic 1 and 2 are the real fan favorites of the series, but Gothic 3 is perfectly enjoyable once you've installed the community patch that gets rid of most of the bugs. Steer clear of the fourth entry in the series, which disappointed fans by closing off the open world the series was famous for.

The most magical moment... Finally figuring out the combat system and turning into a god of death.

3. 'Risen'

Listen, I might be getting eaten by a blind ape, but at least I'm not freezing. [Credit: Deep Silver]
Listen, I might be getting eaten by a blind ape, but at least I'm not freezing. [Credit: Deep Silver]
  • Developer: Piranha Bytes
  • Publishers: Deep Silver, Koch Media
  • Platforms: Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows

For fans disappointed by Gothic 4, Risen was the shoulder they cried upon. This spiritual successor to the series boasted all the open world gameplay and complexity that fans loved, plus a gorgeous and unique island setting inspired by medieval Sicily. The game features a classless character advancement system that lets you pick any combination of combat, magic and thieving skills to suit your character, and there's multiple factions with different goals to meet and befriend (or piss off if you're me).

If you're looking for an open world fantasy that gives you a bit more of a challenge than standard Skyrim combat, Risen's a good pick. You really have to master the combat system and perfect your ability to parry and block if you want to survive the tougher enemies. Risen 2 and 3 attempted to shake up the formula with a Pirates of the Caribbean-inspired flavor and an all new combat system that was met with mixed reception. But they're worth a look if you're sick of snowy mountains and want to head somewhere warm for your next fantasy outing.

The most magical moment... Returning to an area that absolutely destroyed you earlier and taking your revenge.

4. 'The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind'

This guy smokes 10 packs a day and hates you. [Credit: Bethesda]
This guy smokes 10 packs a day and hates you. [Credit: Bethesda]
  • Platforms: Xbox, Microsoft Windows
  • Developers: Bethesda Softworks, Bethesda Game Studios
  • Publisher: Bethesda Softworks

This one's cheating a little, but if you haven't played the third Elder Scrolls game, you should definitely give it a go. Morrowind is where the series really picked up and became something unique in the world of , and to this day there's really nothing quite like it.

While the mechanics may be a little clunky to modern gamers, the setting and weirdness of Morrowind more than makes up for it. The strange little island of Vvardenfell features giant mushroom towers filled with arrogant wizards, cities built inside of dead crabs and voice acting so gravelly and badass it damaged the throat of the VA who performed it. Plus, thanks to the magic of the Elder Scrolls fan community, anything you don't like in the game can probably be modded away.

The most magical moment... Wandering into a daedric ruin that's way too tough for you and sneaking past the deadly enemies to steal an extremely powerful artifact.

5. 'The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt'

You can't see his beard, but trust me, it's growing dynamically [Credit: CD Projekt]
You can't see his beard, but trust me, it's growing dynamically [Credit: CD Projekt]
  • Developer: CD Projekt RED
  • Publishers: CD Projekt, cdp.pl, Spike Chunsoft
  • Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows

If you haven't heard about The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, you're probably buried under a pile of Dragonbone and Skooma. is a massive open world fantasy game that claims to have a world map 20 percent larger than Skyrim and a combat system inspired by Dark Souls. It also boasts a huge amount of player choice regarding quests, with unforeseen consequences and uncertain outcomes that make it one of the most complex takes on video game morality yet.

While the game lacks custom character creation, it does boast one of the most absurd selling points ever. Among the many bullet points in the game's press is a revolutionary Dynamic Beard Growth system, an exciting prospect for those of us who've also been looking for an alternative to Turkish Barber Simulator 2016.

The most magical moment... Making sweet love on a stuffed unicorn, yes, that's a real thing that happens.

6. 'Divinity II'

We all know what you came here for, and it's dragons. [Credit: Atlus]
We all know what you came here for, and it's dragons. [Credit: Atlus]
  • Developer: Larian Studios
  • Publishers: dtp entertainment, Focus Home Interactive, 1C Company, cDV Software Entertainment, Atlus
  • Platforms: Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows

Built in the same engine as Morrowind and Oblivion, Divinity II plays like the result of a night of passion between the Diablo and series. Character advancement is freeform, the world is open to explore and filled with NPCs, branching dialogue and side quests galore. The combat, however, is closer to an action RPG, with hotkey abilities and click-to-attack gameplay. There is one very important way that the game distinguishes itself from its influence, though. Instead of sitting around trying to stab dragons so you can steal their souls, you get to become one instead. Finally, the tables have turned.

The most magical moment... Raining fiery death on your enemies as a dragon, duh.

7. 'Middle-Earth: Shadow Of Mordor'

Probably the rudest interruption the Mordor sewing circle had ever experienced. [Credit: Warner Bros.]
Probably the rudest interruption the Mordor sewing circle had ever experienced. [Credit: Warner Bros.]
  • Developer: Monolith Productions
  • Publishers: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Feral Interactive, ak tronic Software & Services GmbH
  • Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, Linux, Macintosh operating systems

If you like a little bit of peanut-butter goodness in your chocolatey Skyrim open world fantasy, you might like Shadow of Mordor. This action adventure title combines the parkour-filled stealth of the former with an RPG-lite experience system and the most iconic setting in Western fantasy.

The real fun lies in the game's nemesis system. Remember that one bandit who really kicked your ass early on in Skyrim? Everyone had at least one. Well, now you can watch that bandit rise through the ranks of the enemy as you kill off his superiors one by one until finally, when he's sitting high and mighty at the top of the food chain, you swoop in and cut him down like the dog he is.

The most magical moment... Sometimes that nemesis is named Dush and you giggle like a child as you get your revenge.

8. 'Fallout: New Vegas'

The Happy Gilmore sequel got real bleak. [Credit: Bethesda]
The Happy Gilmore sequel got real bleak. [Credit: Bethesda]
  • Developer: Obsidian Entertainment
  • Publishers: Bethesda Softworks, Bandai Namco Entertainment
  • Platforms: Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Microsoft Windows

A.k.a the best modern Fallout game, Fallout: New Vegas is a spinoff sequel to Bethesda's Fallout 3, set in and around Sin City. You take the role of the Courier, a hapless messenger who got shot in the head for the platinum poker chip they were carrying. Thanks to a kindly old doctor and your own gumption, you get patched up and set off on a quest for revenge. Or maybe you don't. Maybe you just feel like wandering around for a while, or slaughtering every single member of Caesar's Legion in the Vegas area, or chilling out with your drunk cowboy friend Cass. It's pretty much up to you.

There's a lot of choice in Fallout: New Vegas, and a whole lot of factions that want you on their side. It's up to you who you side with, or whether you choose to side with anyone at all.

The most magical moment... Walking into Caesar's base and taking his whole army apart with a bunch of explosives and a rocket powered fist.

9. 'Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines'

This guy isn't even undead, that's just what LA does to you. [Credit: Activision-Blizzard]
This guy isn't even undead, that's just what LA does to you. [Credit: Activision-Blizzard]
  • Developer: Troika Games
  • Publishers: Activision, Activision Blizzard
  • Platform: Microsoft Windows

An overlooked classic, Vampire: the Masquerade – Bloodlines isn't quite open world, rather, the game is separated into different hubs that are freely explorable for sections of the game. Where Vampire shines is the storytelling. Every character is memorable and every quest engaging. Thanks to the dozens of different powers, Vampire gives you tons of ways to solve every mission, and choosing certain clans can completely alter the game experience (play Malkavian on your second playthrough for a hilarious time).

The game's also creepy as hell at times, with ghosts, flesh-sculpted ghouls and one of the spookiest levels I've played through in any game. You'll know it when you get there.

The most magical moment... Getting into an argument with a stop sign.

10. 'Fallout 4'

The 'Homeward Bound' sequel got even bleaker. [Credit: Bethesda]
The 'Homeward Bound' sequel got even bleaker. [Credit: Bethesda]
  • Developer: Bethesda Game Studios
  • Publisher: Bethesda
  • Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows

You can't have a list of Skyrim alternatives without mentioning Bethesda's other big open world extravaganza, . While I might prefer the storyline and world of New Vegas more, it's hard to deny just how open and awesome the world of Fallout 4 is. You can build settlements, join factions and generally cause chaos as you roam the wasteland steadfastly ignoring Bethesda's main plot about your dumb ugly kid.

It's also been confirmed that Fallout 4 will be coming to VR in the near future, possibly as part of the mysterious Project Scorpio. So if you're thinking of investing in VR, it might be a good time to do so.

The most magical moment... Having a robot companion who's also a 1930s private eye for some reason.

11. 'Conan: Exiles'

I refuse to play this game unless my rippling thews have accurate jiggle physics. [Credit: Funcom]
I refuse to play this game unless my rippling thews have accurate jiggle physics. [Credit: Funcom]
  • Developer: Funcom
  • Publisher: Funcom
  • Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows

The new survival RPG based on the OG of fantasy has come out in early access on the PC, with a slightly less phallic version set to release on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 soon. Set in the classic world of Robert E. Howard, Conan: Exiles fuses survival game mechanics with first-person swords-and-sorcery. The game will also feature the ability to build your own settlements—shortly before you watch them get crushed by a giant stone goliath or other gargantuan beastie.

While there's some expected early bugginess in the game, Funcom have shown themselves to be an amazingly responsive team and they're adding tons of fixes and content every few days. This may actually be the first early access title that makes it to finished product.

The most magical moment... Fighting giant goliaths while your ding-dong's swinging free in the breeze.

12. 'Far Cry 4'

I approve of everything going on in this image [Credit: Ubisoft]
I approve of everything going on in this image [Credit: Ubisoft]
  • Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
  • Publisher: Ubisoft
  • Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows

If you loved the open world gameplay of Skyrim, but got a bit burned out on all that magic and dragons nonsense, it might be time to give Far Cry 4 a try. The game features a massive open world full of enemy bases to blow up and vehicles to commandeer. There's also an experience system that lets you unlock new abilities and skills, so you won't have to give up that sweet, sweet RPG fix.

The world of Far Cry 4 isn't just filled with generic soldiers, though. Like Skyrim, the countryside of Kyrat is filled with local wildlife, both benign and bloodthirsty. Some will ignore you, some will try to eat you and some can be ridden.

The most magical moment... You can ride an elephant, an elephant that can flip cars onto your enemies.

13. 'Dragon Age: Inquisition'

  • Developer: BioWare
  • Publisher: Bioware
  • Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows

Bioware decided to experiment with a new direction for the third title in their beloved series of RPGs. The newest entry, , embraces an open world approach, with a ton of flexibility in how you approach encounters and quests.

If you played through Skyrim and wished you could have a lot more control over your sometimes suicidal companions, or just wanted more involving company on the road and a deeper story, then check out Dragon Age: Inquisition.

The most magical moment... It's Bioware, so we all know half of us are probably secretly playing for the romances.

14. 'The Elder Scrolls Online'

  • Developer: ZeniMax Online Studios
  • Publishers: Bethesda Softworks, ZeniMax Online Studios
  • Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, Macintosh operating systems

If you ever felt a bit lonely playing through Skyrim, if you wished the burden of Dragonborn didn't hang solely upon your shoulders, then The Elder Scrolls Online will open up a whole new world to you.

Though the combat may be a little clunkier than Skyrim, the game is full of those classic magical Elder Scrolls moments of exploration and discovery, especially with the new Morrowind expansion that takes us back to the home of the Dunmer before it became a blasted heap.

Skyrim: Special Edition is out now. Do you wish you could ride the mammoths in Skyrim? Know any other good games that would satisfy that Elder Scrolls itch? Let us know in the comments!

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Would you rather see another 'Elder Scrolls' or 'Fallout' game from Bethesda?

[Image credit: Bethesda]

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