-Warning!- Personal Story Ahead
I remember my first experience with the Elder Scrolls series, and it was not a good one. I had recently acquired The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind from my brother at his recommendation. I started the game and I was struck by how bad the opening sequence was. After a bit of gibberish I was face to face with an ugly aberration (Jiub) who was mumbling something to me. At this point I had a feeling of dread and a premonition that I wasn't going to like this game. Prior to this the only rpgs I had really played were Japanese, and the presentation in this game struck me as awful.
It did not get much better for the first few hours. I got lost, I moved incredibly slowly, and got mauled by a guy just outside of the opening town. I persevered enough to get to Balmora to talk to Caius Cosades and start the main quest line, and what does he tell me? You better level up and then come back to me. I was outraged! But I did as he asked and painfully leveled up and started to get the hang of the nuances in the game. I started to appreciate the world and that every NPC had multiple topics to talk about, though many were recycled. But still the clunky mechanics had not convinced me.
Once I had leveled up enough to start the main quest, I thought I was ready. I moved toward the Dwemer ruin which was my destination and I was almost across the bridge when a crazy man summoned a skeleton and charged me! Needless to say, I died. I gritted my teeth, reloaded and tried again this time succeeding. Once inside the ruin I had no idea of where to go (I didn't know the quest item was directly to the left), and was quickly assaulted. I died a few more times. I went through the whole damn ruin except for the area where the cube was, and I was getting incredibly frustrated. I almost gave up. Finally I remembered I had skipped a room and went back and got killed by the guy guarding the room. This was becoming tiresome. I finally managed to beat the guy, claim the cube, and beat a hasty retreat back to Cosades.
By this point I had come far enough to get engrossed in the game and keep going. As I played more, exploring more of the world and the different factions and killing strange creatures (damn cliffracers!), I slowly grew to love the game. Something just clicked. I became engrossed in the world. I read all the books, I persuaded people to like me to gain more information, and decorated my house. I went on expeditions into caves to find some lost treasure. I slowly became powerful and god-like. My love affair which had a rocky beginning, lasted for a good few hundred hours and then the expansions added a hundred more or so after that.
If you're even reading this, you're probably wondering what it has to do with Skyrim? This is just an anecdote of how a game that isn't at first appealing might become so over time. Some games just take a while to "click." This is also slightly in response to the people asking what to expect from Skyrim. I will be honest and say that Oblivion did not grab me like Morrowind did. I thoroughly enjoyed it, but it seemed to be missing something. I have a feeling Skyrim is going to be the same. I don't think it's because Oblivion was a bad game, or that Skyrim will be one, but rather because Morrowind was the first time. It took a while to get into, and became one of my favorite gaming experiences ever.