To be obvious for a moment, Skyrim is huge. Its ambition outstrips War in the North’s by entire orders of magnitude. But with that noble ambition comes more glitches. Some glitches are humorous, like the giants that send you sailing over the mountaintops when they club you, or when your horse nonchalantly hitches a ride on a dragon. Others are less benign and will straight up break your game and force you to reload an earlier save, or force you to restart altogether. When it comes to bugs and developer Bethesda, it’s a part of their legacy at this point.

War in the North, due to its sharper focus and, frankly, humbler ambitions, doesn’t run into nearly the amount of SNAFUs. Your companions know their jobs and they don’t disappear on you. Maps are made into distinct arenas, so enemies don’t spastically run up, down, and around the environment and get stuck on the environment’s geometry. And everyone is firmly in place so mission triggers go off without a hitch.

We told you this was going to be comparing apples to oranges. That was the point of this entire exercise: for you to see if War in the North does in fact hint at the type of role-playing experience you’re looking for. So before we invite you to start trolling the forums, perhaps you’d like to read our review as to why Skyrim is the only role-playing game you need this winter.