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Review Oblivion - The Second Opinion

Section8

Cipher
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Tags: Bethesda Softworks; Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion

Nearly a year ago we published a <a href=http://www.rpgcodex.com/content.php?id=129>review of Oblivion</a>.You know, back when that sort of thing was poignant. Now, just in case anyone still cares, here's a <a href=http://www.rpgcodex.com/content.php?id=142>second opinion</a>.
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<blockquote>Every now and then, a game comes along that sounds so insanely good on paper, that it doesn't really need salesmanship to get it out the door and into the eagerly grasping hands of gamers. But that didn't stop Bethesda hyping the ever-loving shit out of fourth Elder Scrolls RPG anyway. So is it the second coming? Is it even a decent game? These are the sort of questions that rattled through my mind as I sat back and watched the Patrick Stewart narrated introduction to Tamriel's Imperial province of Cyrodiil, where the game takes place.</blockquote>
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Joined
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Good read. Refreshingly detailed, and hopefully this could make those allergic to whatever is written by Vault Dweller to view this game a bit more critically.

On a side note, why do the forum state that the thread is authored by Vault Dweller while the last reply says Section8, and the post definitely seems written by you? And have you always been staff? Or is this piece submitted to the staff, thus explaining the Author-thingie? Or are you an alt? Maybe you've always been an alt of VD? Or vice versa? Or are you both just figments of my imagination? Am I an alt? Do I exist?
 

kingcomrade

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I'm pretty sure Doom didn't predict player movement. The way hitscan enemies worked was that they would aim on to your current location and track you for about half a second, then lock onto that position and fire about half a second later with randomly generated scatter so if you kept moving you were likely to avoid the shot but because of the scatter it still might hit you.

Nonhitscan weapons like fireballs were just thrown at your current position, moving or no.

edit-
btw I <3 Section8
 

Dark Helmet

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Hmm... VD's review seemed even-handed, and the verdict somewhat negative, and this review is completely negative, but the verdict is basically the same (good for what it is, a casual action game).
 
Joined
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Yup, that review is basically the conclusion I came up with after playing for a few days. I am sure 95% of us felt the same way. O is the worst thing to happen to CPRG's. Ever. I hope Luke Skywalker will come help us destroy The Empire someday.

@Dark Helmet- Where abouts in Maine are you from? I am just asking because I rarely find anybody on the net from Maine, especially from gaming sites. Are you Irish? This state is dominated by Irish immagrants and I am the only Whop greaseball who has to fend off the pricks by himself :lol: .
 

DarkUnderlord

Professional Throne Sitter
Staff Member
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I agree with the review. Oblivion removes any and all chances of failure or anything even remotely negative happening to the character and instead leaves a rather empty void. If there's no chance of failure, what's the point?

Dementia Praecox said:
On a side note, why do the forum state that the thread is authored by Vault Dweller while the last reply says Section8, and the post definitely seems written by you?
It's a bug within the content approval system.

Dementia Praecox said:
And have you always been staff?
He's new.
 

Azael

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Goatsecxtion8 said:
Kind of like trying to eat a meal with a Swiss army knife. You think it's going to be crazy useful having 27 different tools handy, but in reality, the only thing worth doing is threatening to cut someone unless they bring you a fucking knife and fork.

Pure gold. Liked the review, makes me more confident that not playing Oblivion is the way to go.
 

Balor

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Well, I've not been tracking modding field for a time due to severe lack of time (and motivation), but perhaps (unless Beth scared off all modders by now...) most of those flaws are already fixed by modders.
Perhaps I'll take a vacation someday, go on d/l spree and try out oblivion with latest mods (and with some of my own).
 

Antagonist

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Excellent review which describes the gameplay (which I never experienced firsthand) in a balanced way from the perspective of an ardent RPG player and with far less vitriol than the original. I'm looking forward to your other reviews, Section8 :D
 

Section8

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I'm pretty sure Doom didn't predict player movement.

Yep, you're exactly right, but I was referring to the fact that Doom relies on predictable vectors (something that makes invisibility a burden, since it introduces a random variance to the angle of projectiles).

Nonhitscan weapons like fireballs were just thrown at your current position, moving or no.

Yep. So Oblivion does outdo Doom slightly in that respect, assuming you're facing a single enemy. Doom Survival vs a single foe just requires movement perpendicular to the projectile. In Oblivion, it's a binary solution. If you're moving when the projectile spawns, stop. If you're motionless, move.

The other game I mentioned was Raiden, which uses a saturation of fire within a confined game space, meaning the fire doesn't even need to be aimed at anything, because the player doesn't have an "out" vector, they have to find temporary safe spots within the field of fire.

Since Oblivion lacks the multitude of enemies, or genuinely confined spaces, it fails where both the other games succeed.

Hmm... VD's review seemed even-handed, and the verdict somewhat negative, and this review is completely negative, but the verdict is basically the same (good for what it is, a casual action game).

Well yeah, I had noticed that the tone was overly negative, but couldn't bring myself to insert token positive moments to lighten it up. But to be fair, the vast majority of my negativity is directed at failing to excel, rather than outright failure. Off the top of my head, the only aspect of the game that I would scrap utterly would be the persuasion minigame. Oblivion is the Eliza Doolittle of RPGs. Or Rachel Leigh Cook in She's All That if you're an Elder Scrolls Forumite. ;)

And for what it's worth, the positives of the game really do speak for themselves, even if you dodged the hype. The very concept of the game alone is briliant, I just wish there was a developer with the balls to do it properly.

Anyway, glad to see some people enjoyed the read. I'm itching to tear Gothic III a new arsehole with my Nit Pick +3, just as soon as I can tear myself away from it.
 

Lumpy

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Section8 said:
And for what it's worth, the positives of the game really do speak for themselves, even if you dodged the hype. The very concept of the game alone is briliant, I just wish there was a developer with the balls to do it properly.
I agree, hence http://rpgcodex.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=15868 .
Oblivion is a good example of a bad implementation of a good concept. Actually role-playing a mage rather than a guy who spellslings his way through the linear questline sounds great, but too bad Oblivion has a Mage's guild questline which is just another series of mindless hacking quests, with tons of plotholes.
 

Amasius

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Like VDs one this is a very unusual review, it's more an well-founded analysis of the shortcomings of Oblivions gamemechanics.

I like the sandbox concept and I could forgive Oblivion most of its faults but not that it constantly insulted my intelligence. :evil:
 

Excrément

Arbiter
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>select text
>copy
>paste it on excel
>use nbcar function
and you got : 22,447.
no sorry, this one isn't for me.
 

Xi

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That pretty much sums it up. After you play the game for about 2-3 hours you've experienced the depth of Oblivion entirely. There's just nothing else that will surprise you after that.

Good review!
 

Volourn

Pretty Princess
Pretty Princess Glory to Ukraine
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I don't know why you guys thought the Codex needed to do a second Oblivion review. I only rea dlike one paragraph, and it's not because I thought the writing sucked. It's just that I didn't need to read it to know what was going to be written, and that's comingf rom someone who hasn't even played Oblivion.

Section 8, you would have been better off, imo, to rewview a game that the Codex hasn't reviewed to date..

Ah well.. *shrug*
 

kingcomrade

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So Oblivion does outdo Doom slightly in that respect, assuming you're facing a single enemy.
Actually I think Doom's system was perfect for that game. If the enemies put lead (leed, heh, not led) on you it would've become very complicated and less fun to avoid projectiles because since a single human being can only keep so many mental tabs on so many events dodging would become much more a matter of chance. What made Doom so great as an FPS was that it gave the player very precise and responsive (speedy) control over his avatar.

no sorry, this one isn't for me.
The Patrick Stewart Edition will be here within the week.
 

Lumpy

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He posted the link, it got autocensored, and he also posted a link to a site with a copy of the review.
 

Sovy Kurosei

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Dec 29, 2004
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I got suspended for four days for bypassing the word filter then I was unwarned because I actually didn't bypass the word filter. :|

I got around the "no linking to the Codex" the same way we did when we posted those propaganda posters by uploading the article to my website and linking it to that.
 

suibhne

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Volourn said:
Section 8, you would have been better off, imo, to rewview a game that the Codex hasn't reviewed to date..

Consider it a "free" review - you're getting 2 for the price of 0. He'd already done most of the work on it last year and just needed to polish it up.
 

DarkUnderlord

Professional Throne Sitter
Staff Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2002
Messages
28,314
Reading that thread, it's interesting to see how the crowd has changed at ESF. Remember when Oblivion was awesome and MODDERSâ„¢ would come to our rescue? Now they all seem to agree and they're complaining that Section8 didn't mention all of the problems in a number of other areas. "He didn't critiscise spellmaking!".

Once again, we were right with our initial assessment and they were wrong.

Excrément said:
>select text
>copy
>paste it on excel
>use nbcar function
and you got : 22,447.
no sorry, this one isn't for me.
That tells us a lot about you.

And just so you know, MS Word does have a "Word Count" feature and if you've got Excel, chances are you have Word as well. At 3,880 words it's actually a pretty light review.
 

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