Bethesda’s latest masterpiece Skyrim is due to be released on the 11.11.11 this year so I thought i’d prepare for this release by reviewing Oblivion which I’ve actually never played before. Skyrim includes extremely high graphics and boasts an impressive storyline and gameplay which everyone is greatly looking forward to, but let’s see how Oblivion stands up against these remarks.
Before I begin I’ve pasted a YouTube video of some nice Oblivion music at the bottom so press the play button and continue reading. It’s four minutes long so you should finish reading this as it ends.
The introduction to the game and cutscenes were brilliantly achieved, they were timed to the music perfectly and provided a great view of Imperial City. I really love the introduction music also, to tell you a secret I actually used the Oblivion theme song in one of my games when I was 12, however only a few friends tested it and I didn’t know about copyrights back then, so don’t tell Bethedsa lol.
The storyline is fantastic and compelling as well as brilliantly immersive, I found myself getting into the story fully which is fairly uncommon in games without fairly high definition content and graphics. The choices you make at the start of the game are very broad and range from multiple races, characters and star-signs to help you create your ideal person. There is even an option to change the color of your nose which is quite ridiculous because I only used the main character editing features without going into too much detail. However the option is there if you wish to change it. I got addicted to the game once I got immersed in the storyline and stayed up to all hours of the morning playing through it and trying to get rid of my vampirism curse which burns me when I come into contact with sunlight.
There are also many thousands of items avaliable in this game for you to find, create and wear, which range from awesome rare glass armour to weapons that deal fire damage on impact. You would be playing the games for many months if you wanted to collect one of every item and spell in the game. I did like the spells in the game, especially the fact that you could create your own and combine their effects for a “super spell”, although I disliked having to find the right one I needed at any time as I had to scroll through around 100 spells looking for it. This could have benefited from another spell column which the spells you’ve created go into, or even better the ability to drag spells into their own columns from the least used to the most used.
The graphics in Oblivion are to say the least, a bit outdated compared to the games companies today pump out. I found some stretched textures and some rocks that didn’t completely go into the ground, however that’s to be expected when the game was made over 4 years ago. I quickly overlooked the graphics and become fully immersed in the game play which quite frankly was nothing short of brilliant.
The dialogue can be fairly disjointed in the game if you’ve annoyed a character in-game and then talk about another topic they’ll be angry at first then become instantly happy again. Overall however the dialogue was very well done and it seemed like the characters had an infinite supply of phrases to say, and they responded to every situation fairly accurately. I noticed around half way through the game that the females in the game were mostly voice acted by the same individual, with either a pitch change or different emotions coming through.
As I said at the beginning I loved the music throughout this game, especially the peaceful ambient music. If you’ve read my Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic review you would know I disliked the battle music in the game and the transition from peaceful music to it, mainly due to it’s sharp quite annoying sounds. Oblivion however was a great transition and I instantly knew I was under attack as well as following the same theme of the music that was currently playing.
There are a few things I disliked about this game, one being if you attempted to pick a lock on a door by accident then you back out and someone was looking at you they would automatically attack you even if you didn’t get in. The actual lock-picking strategy was a nuisance also, so many times I ran out of picks and had to load the game to try again, because the locks are so unpredictable. I also hate hate hate hate hate being a vampire so much! It’s such a pain to get anywhere on the map at night especially with a bounty on your head. if you fast travel to a distant location by the time you get there it’s day again and you start taking instant damage, and if it’s night you can’t get into houses because most of them are locked. Finally there are a few glitches in the game, on multiple occasions I had to load a game a few saves back to be able to talk to an NPC which wasn’t where their supposed to be or who didn’t give me an item they should have.
There are also a fair few mods for Oblivion scattered around the net, so I thought i’d try one that improved the texture quality, below are a few pictures of Oblivion with the pack installed. If you’d like to upgrade you graphics here’s the link to the torrent where I downloaded them from: http://thepiratebay.org/torrent/3751512
Overall I highly recommend this game to anyone reading this review especially if you are looking to buy Skyrim when it’s released, or if you haven’t played this game already. This game is so addictive (after the beginning) you’ll be playing it for hours on end delving into side-quests, training your skills or just killing creatures. The graphics are fairly low but are still appealing to the eyes and are easily adapted to if you play minecraft. The music is fantastic and suits the environments perfectly for each location, however the spellcasting sounds may get a bit repetitive if your casting often. You should buy this game if you haven’t already, I got in in a two-game pack with Bioshock which I should be reviewing as soon as I start playing it.
Here’s the final score out of 100%:
Fun Rating: 97%
0% – 24% = Hopeless Game, Definitely not worth buying! if you have it sell it now while its worth something!
25% – 49% = Terrible Game, This game will not prove to be very enjoyable, and may only be played once and forgotten.
50% – 59% = Average Game, A very mediocre game that you may play occasionally to pass time but doesn’t prove to be very enjoyable.
60% – 69% = Nice Game, A game you would play once or twice to see how it is, but ultimately lacks replay-ability and immersion.
70% – 79% = Brilliant Game, This game would satisfy your gaming needs for a very long time but would eventually be forgotten over time.
80% – 89% = Fantastic Game, A very fun game that proves time and time again to be enjoyable and addictive.
90% – 99% = Amazing Game, Extremely Enjoyable and has lots of replay-ability content, as well as pushing the boundaries for future games.
100% = Epic Game, Go and buy 20 copies right now! (In-case there’s a nuclear war and they get destroyed)