User Score
7.1

Mixed or average reviews- based on 261 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 47 out of 261

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  1. Jun 27, 2012
    6
    If you were expecting a DLC the size of Shivering Isles, you're going to be very disappointed. This filler quest is more akin to an overpriced Knights of the Nine, with interesting game mechanics (vampire lord, crossbow) which are unfortunately poorly executed and impractical at best. Not even mentioning the plethora of bugs already reported on Beth forums.
  2. Aug 15, 2012
    6
    First of all, this is ridiculously overpriced, and is only worth about half of its retail price. As far as new content goes, however, there is a fun (glitchy) questline, and some new (irritating) achievements, along with some extra misc quests. As cool as some of these are, I would only recommend Dawnguard to big Skyrim fans, or those who are big vampire fans.
  3. Aug 20, 2012
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Maybe my expectations were too high. When I heard that Skyrim (my personal goty) was getting its first downloadable content after almost a full year after release, i couldn't help but get excited. But, after playing through it, I only felt dissapointed. I'll start with the core of the dlc, the quests. The questline starts out promising, you overhear guards and citizens spreading rumors of vampire attacks and an ancient order of vampire hunters known as the dawnguard are gaining strength. You visit their fortress at the very southeast of skyrim, and are sent on a simple mission to clear out a dungeon infested with vampires. However, when you get there you discover a female vampire named serana, and a plot to end the tyranny of the sun. Soon after, you are given the choice to either join the dawnguard, or the order of vampires serana is/was a part of. This is the point where most of dawnguard's problems surface. The quests are either simple fetch quests/ clear out all of the enemies, or horribly drawn out quests (albeit with a good story) that have you repeating the same tedious task 4-5 times. For example, the soul cairn, a quest that was shown off at e3 as the pinnacle of the dlc, ended up being a 45 minute quest that was a chore to get through, let me breakdown the quest for those who think i'm being tough on it. You arrive in the soul cairn, walk for about 5-10 minutes to get to a castle, talk to someone, then you walk to a tower, again for about 5 minutes,and kill an enemy, rinse and repeat 3 times. after that you walk back to the castle, and face an undead dragon an his army of skeletons who have been cursed to the realm.(which admittedly is a truly great moment) Then, if you didn't become a vampire, you are supposed to retreive your soul, and either i'm a complete moron or bethesda messed up, it must of took me 30 minutes to find my way to the soul, because you need to get to the roof of the building it's on, which is basically a maze. After i had become completely frustrated, I looked it up online and it turned out I needed to jump into a well of magic water that teleported me to the roof, how was I supposed to know this? Another problem is the vampire assassin's that randomly spawn in cities. It isn't fair, if you aren't willing to run around the entire city and check every building, then important npc's/shopkeepers/questgivers will be assassinated without you even knowing. Why aren't the npc's smart enough to know the guy with the black cloak, inverted nose, and glowing orange eyes is maybe a little suspicious? But I don't completely hate dawnguard, the storylines and characters are some of the best in the game, and the extra content(new weapons, armor, locations, vampire form,etc..) are welcome additions. Unfortunately, mediocre quests, and some bugs, kept dawnguard from being a strong addition to the 2011 GOTY, and i can only recommend it to those who can't wait for another dlc or even another Elder Scrolls. Hopefully Bethesda steps it up before they release anything else Expand
  4. rhe
    Jul 4, 2012
    6
    Admittedly, while the new classes, new story-line and new dungeons to explore really try hard to make this DLC sound like it is reasonably priced, it still really feels way too anemic to be priced at 1600 msp. I say this because when considering other DLC pieces from other games like Kingdoms of Amalur are half as much and actually add a whole new map to explore outside of the originalAdmittedly, while the new classes, new story-line and new dungeons to explore really try hard to make this DLC sound like it is reasonably priced, it still really feels way too anemic to be priced at 1600 msp. I say this because when considering other DLC pieces from other games like Kingdoms of Amalur are half as much and actually add a whole new map to explore outside of the original area you get to explore while Skyrim is double the price and gives you NOWHERE new to explore outside of the main map. Due to this, Skyrim really feels WAY too heavily priced to be worth the content and if Bethesda want to charge this kind of money they should at least make the effort to add a new area (like the Shivering Isles expansion for Oblivion) so it doesn't feel like so much of a rip-off. Expand
  5. Jul 8, 2012
    6
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The Elder Scrolls first DLC - Dawnguard is a little bit of a let down. At 1600 Ms points you'd expect better, but as Skyrim was it does come with a good story but is let down by shoddy errors of programming. Not only that but Dawnguard has major flaws; such as when switching over to Vampire Lord, this could have easily have been added better, but instead it is listed in the Powers section of Magic and leaves you having to change back all the time to loot corpses.
    Now don't get me wrong, I advocate Skyrim with its many puzzles, storyline and game play but The DLC is such a let down and my verdict on Dawnguard is it's a lowly 6 out of 10 for ruining Skyrim.
    Expand
  6. Jul 5, 2012
    5
    Bugged and Boring is how I would describe this expansion. I had to restart once because of a bug and when another bug stopped the progression of the game I put the game back on the shelf. Such a shame this fantastic game had such a sub par expansion. I am really starting to take issue with video games no refund policy.
  7. Jul 1, 2012
    7
    In terms of bang for your buck among recent DLC, Dawnguard is not a bad investment. That being said the only addition I have found useful is the dragon armor as it dwarfs the new crossbow. The quests are good, yet be prepared to visit the same location multiple times with only a few new additions. Overall, if you loved Skyrim and put it down then Dawnguard is a decent reason to pick itIn terms of bang for your buck among recent DLC, Dawnguard is not a bad investment. That being said the only addition I have found useful is the dragon armor as it dwarfs the new crossbow. The quests are good, yet be prepared to visit the same location multiple times with only a few new additions. Overall, if you loved Skyrim and put it down then Dawnguard is a decent reason to pick it up again. If you are a casual Elder Scrolls fan you may want to steer clear. Expand
  8. Jul 4, 2012
    7
    So I just finished the vampire storyline of dawnguard. Over all I found the plot fairly interesting but would have liked to see more involvment in "families" disfuntionality. The main subquest is fairly involved, but does require going to some location revisiting of dwemer ruins. I enjoy the benifit of both mounted combat as well as being able to summon an immortal horse (undead). My mainSo I just finished the vampire storyline of dawnguard. Over all I found the plot fairly interesting but would have liked to see more involvment in "families" disfuntionality. The main subquest is fairly involved, but does require going to some location revisiting of dwemer ruins. I enjoy the benifit of both mounted combat as well as being able to summon an immortal horse (undead). My main gripes are that ever since I downloaded it some of my armour will become invisable yet functional. Also although the areas that are new are cool, I really would have liked to see a new map. Also I don't think that the size of the dlc justifies $20. Can we say horse armor anyone. I would recomend this as it is fun, but at a lowered cost. Oh and for those who complane about vamps. killing npcs... First do you complane when a dragon does this, second isn't this supposed to reflect events in a world, like a movie people die, no ones immortal. Expand
  9. Aug 18, 2012
    7
    I will try to explain this as simple as I can. I love skyrim, but Dawnguard should have cost 1,200 tops. Playing as a vampire its clunky and unexciting at all, you are slow, powers are weak you can't play in 1st person, you can't sneak or hide... Plot can be predicted since early on the game. Yes its same old Skyrim, more quest, a few new spots, more annoying dragons. My advice; Get itI will try to explain this as simple as I can. I love skyrim, but Dawnguard should have cost 1,200 tops. Playing as a vampire its clunky and unexciting at all, you are slow, powers are weak you can't play in 1st person, you can't sneak or hide... Plot can be predicted since early on the game. Yes its same old Skyrim, more quest, a few new spots, more annoying dragons. My advice; Get it once it when its on sale, DO NOT PAY FULL PRICE! Expand
  10. Oct 16, 2012
    5
    I honestly expected more out of this DLC than I have before. I played the storyline, and beat it in one day, and I must say: I am very much disappointed. The new content, such as the armor and characters was good, (except for the crossbow) but they didn't do a very good job with the ending of the story. I beat the final objective, and said to myself, "Is that the DLC I bought?" The peopleI honestly expected more out of this DLC than I have before. I played the storyline, and beat it in one day, and I must say: I am very much disappointed. The new content, such as the armor and characters was good, (except for the crossbow) but they didn't do a very good job with the ending of the story. I beat the final objective, and said to myself, "Is that the DLC I bought?" The people who made it cut the story line off WAY too soon, and on top of that, they didn't even make it worth playing. When you beat it, you don't get any sort of grand prize or anything.

    I think Bethesda did a good job with their idea, but it could have used a LOT more work before they put it on the market.
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  11. Aug 19, 2012
    5
    This DLC had the potential to be so much more than what it is, but for me Bethesda's constant corner-cutting with the design shot it in the foot, certain armours are just obvious re-skins ( my, my ancient falmer armour you sure do look like my steel set) hiding a lack of different armour designs by simply changing the colour, and after all that talk of crossbows you get a total of 2,This DLC had the potential to be so much more than what it is, but for me Bethesda's constant corner-cutting with the design shot it in the foot, certain armours are just obvious re-skins ( my, my ancient falmer armour you sure do look like my steel set) hiding a lack of different armour designs by simply changing the colour, and after all that talk of crossbows you get a total of 2, that's it, there's no unique ones and even the two you do have get obsolete fast, not bothering to give the dawn-guard a full weapon set or the vampire's any weapons at all means that for a hoarder like me there really wasn't much worth getting excited about(especially as they didn't bother making sure they didn't bug out weapons racks, which still deign to eat my new DLC stuff). They even managed to be lazy with the new monsters with most being skeletons with a bit of a black haze around them, and even the mini bosses are just giants wearing dragon-bone plate armour which looks as ridiculous as it sounds. At the end of it all you do get the opportunity to have a new home base depending on your side but just like the others (thieves guild, archmage quarters) there's nothing there worth going back for so you'll never really return to them after completing the DLC. All in all a generally uninspired affair, with the beautiful environments being one of the few positive points, would only recommend to a die hard fan that has a compulsive need to get everything Skyrim Expand
  12. Aug 25, 2012
    5
    Skyrim is a great game. It's a glitch filled mess that I could forgive due too it being such a massive world. Most glitches have been fixed and the ones that haven't will forever bug me. Dawnguard however is to small to excuse these major glitches such as when a major character is to busy being hostile to talk to you. Luckily people found a way around this glitch otherwise I would haveSkyrim is a great game. It's a glitch filled mess that I could forgive due too it being such a massive world. Most glitches have been fixed and the ones that haven't will forever bug me. Dawnguard however is to small to excuse these major glitches such as when a major character is to busy being hostile to talk to you. Luckily people found a way around this glitch otherwise I would have left before the new features had a chance to suck. Playing as a vampire lord is boring. You are only able to survive in a fight at night(which is understandable) and if you chose the Dawnguard side of the quest, you are given no tutorial on how to play as one. You are given the ability to become a werewolf again, but only once, which sucks because they actually made being a werewolf a decent experience. The story is far more interesting then the one the game gives you, but overall this is not worth the $20. Expand
  13. Oct 29, 2012
    6
    Overpriced, and fairly disappointing when I played it. Vampire attacks become so common it becomes just plain irritating. Good items had been added, but for what it is, just seemed a but of a waste of money. Lag and bugs were so common I had to get rid of the software.
  14. Aug 31, 2013
    7
    As a lover Skyrim and the Elder Scrolls in general, this DLC package really did reignite my love for the game and gave me some new content to sink my teeth into. The additions of crossbows, mounted combat, new talent trees and the whole turning into a vampire lord thing are very welcome and add some neat new features to play around with. But at 1600 Microsoft points (around £14) however,As a lover Skyrim and the Elder Scrolls in general, this DLC package really did reignite my love for the game and gave me some new content to sink my teeth into. The additions of crossbows, mounted combat, new talent trees and the whole turning into a vampire lord thing are very welcome and add some neat new features to play around with. But at 1600 Microsoft points (around £14) however, you have to ask yourself if this is really good value for money. My answer would be yes, but only just and only because I enjoyed Skyrim so much. If you’re bored of delving into caves, killing vampires and skeletons, dealing with all manner of kooky quest givers and are just looking for something distinct and brand new in the region of Skyrim then this is not for you. Expand
  15. Nov 17, 2012
    5
    Main story was average as **** Like the Snow Elves being added and extra Dwarven ruins to explore made it a pass. The game needed a big DLC, ala Knights of the Nine (I thought Shivering Isles was way overrated, just fyi). This just wasn't up to scratch.
  16. Dec 12, 2012
    6
    Dawnguard, the first expansion in Skyrim. may not be exactly what some people were expecting. On one hand, Dawnguard successfully brings a new experience into the Elder Scrolls franchise. On the other, it comes off as much worse than I was hoping for. While Dawnguard plays just as well as the rest of the game, there are many glitches that should have been fixed before it had even beenDawnguard, the first expansion in Skyrim. may not be exactly what some people were expecting. On one hand, Dawnguard successfully brings a new experience into the Elder Scrolls franchise. On the other, it comes off as much worse than I was hoping for. While Dawnguard plays just as well as the rest of the game, there are many glitches that should have been fixed before it had even been released. There was a time when I literally had to shove my companion through a cave to continue the story because she would not follow me when she was supposed to, but it is hard to complain when there are many great things that Dawnguard does. For one, it adds on a new set of weapons, shouts, companions, and abilities. Weapons like dragonbone allow for one to obtain some very strong and rare maces or swords. The companion you receive is probably the strongest you could possibly have and new abilities like the vampire turn out to be pleasantly useful. Aside from that however, Dawnguard does virtually nothing to add onto the map besides maybe three or four locations. While these locations are fun to explore, you will have very little reason to return to them. Also, some of the story quests are rather more annoying than entertaining. Overall, the most disappointing thing about Dawnguard is that no matter what side you choose, it will end the same way, adding no replay value what so ever. Dawnguard may have its issues and downsides but most people who own Skyrim will want to play this dlc. If you have extra money laying around I suggest buying Dawnguard, if you don't, I suggest waiting until you can spare some extra cash. Expand
  17. Aug 31, 2013
    7
    [7.6] Not as fun as its successor, but Dawnguard offers more than enough for any fan of Bethesda games. Maybe it's the repetitiveness of some of the missions, or the lack of many new locations, it's acceptable, but barely.
  18. Apr 30, 2013
    7
    For the most part, the only complaints I have are that the dang bloodsuckers eat critical characters if you aren't careful. Oi. Only install this if you are lvl 15 or higher, or you WILL have some issues with the enemies slaying folks you may need in-game. Otherwise, DL it and save it for later. It IS a fun DLC, making Werewolf play actually WORTH it, and Vampire play fun as well. It alsoFor the most part, the only complaints I have are that the dang bloodsuckers eat critical characters if you aren't careful. Oi. Only install this if you are lvl 15 or higher, or you WILL have some issues with the enemies slaying folks you may need in-game. Otherwise, DL it and save it for later. It IS a fun DLC, making Werewolf play actually WORTH it, and Vampire play fun as well. It also hosts a serious hottie in your traveling companion, and a fun story, Vamps or Humies. Expand
  19. Oct 16, 2012
    0
    I honestly expected more out of this DLC than I have before. I played the storyline, and beat it in one day, and I must say: I am very much disappointed. The new content, such as the armor and characters was good, (except for the crossbow) but they didn't do a very good job with the ending of the story. I beat the final objective, and said to myself, "Is that the DLC I bought?" The peopleI honestly expected more out of this DLC than I have before. I played the storyline, and beat it in one day, and I must say: I am very much disappointed. The new content, such as the armor and characters was good, (except for the crossbow) but they didn't do a very good job with the ending of the story. I beat the final objective, and said to myself, "Is that the DLC I bought?" The people who made it cut the story line off WAY too soon, and on top of that, they didn't even make it worth playing. When you beat it, you don't get any sort of grand prize or anything.

    I think Bethesda did a good job with their idea, but it could have used a LOT more work before they put it on the market.
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Metascore
73

Mixed or average reviews - based on 47 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 47
  2. Negative: 0 out of 47
  1. Feb 25, 2013
    95
    Dawnguard is much more substantial add-on than Hearthfire, adding on a full storyline centered on a war between the vampires and the Dawnguard.
  2. Oct 14, 2012
    85
    The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – Dawnguard. Bethesda shows how a dlc should be done. Dawnguard's 20-euro price tag is quite steep, but the amount of quality content more than makes up for it. Also, playing as a vampire lord is a welcome distraction. [Sept 2012]
  3. Aug 8, 2012
    50
    Predictable, bug-ridden fare. [Sept 2012, p.72]