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Why do people hate Oblivion so much?

Funposter

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I don't consider open world design that's effectively linear due to massive level differences to be particularly good design either. It feels very artificial for there to be an area of level 1 goblins to be right next to an area of level 9 million demons.
The problem with Piranha Bytes world design is that it often feels very arbitrary. ELEX being the latest example, you have areas that are logically challenging/impossible for a new character, but then you also have areas blockaded by challenging enemies that are just sort of there for no good reason (Why is there a Slugbeast guarding a sword a new player can't use right outside Goliet? Why is there a Slime Drakon right outside of the Domed City?). As you said, it's effectively linear, or is linear at least for the first 10 hours or some such. People complain about New Vegas' open world for similar reasons, since the player is effectively forced to complete that Goodsprings->Primm->Novac->Boulder City circuit before they get to New Vegas itself and the game actually opens up, although experienced players can circumvent this. It's just a difference in the development priorities, really.
 
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Cael

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I don't consider open world design that's effectively linear due to massive level differences to be particularly good design either. It feels very artificial for there to be an area of level 1 goblins to be right next to an area of level 9 million demons.
The problem with Piranha Bytes world design is that it often feels very arbitrary. ELEX being the latest example, you have areas that are logically challenging/impossible for a new character, but then you also have areas blockaded by challenging enemies that are just sort of there for no good reason (Why is there a Slugbeast guarding a sword a new player can't use right outside Goliet? Why is there a Slime Drakon right outside of the Domed City?). As you said, it's effectively linear, or is linear at least for the first 10 hours or some such. People complain about New Vegas' open world for similar reasons, since the player is effectively forced to complete that Goodsprings->Primm->Novac->Boulder City circuit before they get to New Vegas itself and the game actually opens up, although experienced players can circumvent this. It's just a difference in the development priorities, really.
That very linearity is what I am talking about. It forces you to go down a certain path, where the mobs are tailored to your expected level at that point in the game if you follow that linear path. That is level scaling.

What the idiots don't get is that level scaling is vital to a RPG so that new players are not overwhelmed by something they can never defeat and then rage quit the game. While it is trendy for Codexian arrogant fuckheads to claim that any RPG that fucks over newbies as "good design" because "it doesn't scale to your level", it is actually very bad design from a business point of view.

What I do not agree with (which I have said several times now) is level scaling using the same mobs but with either more betterer equipment or bigger, betterer stats. You want your players to feel that their characters are getting stronger, not static. Players want to see their toon graduate from rats to orcs to bears to dragons. They don't want to see their toons fight rat, stronger rat, even stronger rat, and rats that can take down dragons. Both are forms of level scaling.
 

Butter

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Cael, you're literally the only person who uses the term "level scaling" in this way. Every single other person on the planet understands it to mean enemies having their stats modified on the fly to match the player. Equating that to an escalating challenge is fucking autistic.
 
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RNGsus

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I remember devs giving players actual options to overcome those more difficult zones, like big ass guns, or one-use spells. No need to be retarded with the scaling, it was as if Oblivion devs had never played other rpgs, not even Morrowind.
 

Cael

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Cael, you're literally the only person who uses the term "level scaling" in this way. Every single other person on the planet understands it to mean enemies having their stats modified on the fly to match the player.
At first, perhaps. However, the whole argument shifted to where they were arguing putting a level 100 mob next to a level 1 mob is a good example of not level scaling. That is not level scaling, that is retardism.

I am coming from a design principles point of view, where fundamentally, both are exactly the same: giving players a challenge. One way is done badly, the other is done well.
 

Tenebris

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I really question what the fuck the devs were smoking with the scaling. Seeing bandits running around with glass armor was stupid.
 

Cael

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I really question what the fuck the devs were smoking with the scaling. Seeing bandits running around with glass armor was stupid.
Being Bethesda, anything goes.
 

octavius

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Oh it wasn't well received when it first launched. I remember that it got really bad review scores due to the sheer amount of bugs and broken things. Only after Bugthesda modders came in and fixed it did the game start getting positive reviews.

qUVdI38.png

wSkWRmF.png

The really scary thing is that this score is based on the X-Box version, were you couldn't mod any of the glaring flaws, most noteably the ridicolous level scaling...
 
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RNGsus

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I really question what the fuck the devs were smoking with the scaling. Seeing bandits running around with glass armor was stupid.
All their CS attention went to lining up trees and rocks.
 

garren

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I can't imagine why anyone would play Oblivion these days. Back in the day when the open world aesthetic was still relatively fresh I could see normies enjoying it sure. But today all you need to do is look one youtube clip of it and see the pudgy faces, horrible mechanics and writing to awkward combat and easily quit such thoughts.
 

Sykar

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Turn right after Alpha Centauri
I don't consider open world design that's effectively linear due to massive level differences to be particularly good design either. It feels very artificial for there to be an area of level 1 goblins to be right next to an area of level 9 million demons.
The problem with Piranha Bytes world design is that it often feels very arbitrary. ELEX being the latest example, you have areas that are logically challenging/impossible for a new character, but then you also have areas blockaded by challenging enemies that are just sort of there for no good reason (Why is there a Slugbeast guarding a sword a new player can't use right outside Goliet? Why is there a Slime Drakon right outside of the Domed City?). As you said, it's effectively linear, or is linear at least for the first 10 hours or some such. People complain about New Vegas' open world for similar reasons, since the player is effectively forced to complete that Goodsprings->Primm->Novac->Boulder City circuit before they get to New Vegas itself and the game actually opens up, although experienced players can circumvent this. It's just a difference in the development priorities, really.
That very linearity is what I am talking about. It forces you to go down a certain path, where the mobs are tailored to your expected level at that point in the game if you follow that linear path. That is level scaling.

What the idiots don't get is that level scaling is vital to a RPG so that new players are not overwhelmed by something they can never defeat and then rage quit the game. While it is trendy for Codexian arrogant fuckheads to claim that any RPG that fucks over newbies as "good design" because "it doesn't scale to your level", it is actually very bad design from a business point of view.

What I do not agree with (which I have said several times now) is level scaling using the same mobs but with either more betterer equipment or bigger, betterer stats. You want your players to feel that their characters are getting stronger, not static. Players want to see their toon graduate from rats to orcs to bears to dragons. They don't want to see their toons fight rat, stronger rat, even stronger rat, and rats that can take down dragons. Both are forms of level scaling.

Complete and utter BS for New Vegas. Goodsprings gives you a solution for the other two paths, a stealth boy. Even without there are videos on YT that show that it is NOT that hard for a level 1 character to run past the Cazadores, you can also abuse their AI and shoot them from ledges that they cannot come up to, Victor also shows up in case you want to fight them.
New Vegas you can literally go anywhere you want if you are not a complete murder hobo retard who just wants to blow up everything brainlessly.

 
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RNGsus

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I tried in one of my early saves, but I doubt it was my first play through.
 

Funposter

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I tried in one of my early saves, but I doubt it was my first play through.
Right. As a comparison to say, Morrowind (gold standard for early game freedom imo), a first-time New Vegas player is going to follow the quests leading them through the aforementioned circuit which takes up several hours of playtime. Anyone who says they braved the Cazadors and Deathclaws on their initial playthrough is either one of those people who obsessively attempts to break games, or is lying for internet cool kid points. In Morrowind, even a player blindly following directions will get dumped in front of Caius within ten minutes and then be told "go out on your own, look for freelance work, or trouble. Then, when you're ready, come back, and I'll have orders for you." Obviously the player has the option to not even report to Caius and just head out on their own, but even if you're do report to him, the game actively encourages you to go out in whatever direction you want because it's a living, breathing open-world.
 
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Greek Anime God

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I tried in one of my early saves, but I doubt it was my first play through.
Right. As a comparison to say, Morrowind (gold standard for early game freedom imo), a first-time New Vegas player is going to follow the quests leading them through the aforementioned circuit which takes up several hours of playtime. Anyone who says they braved the Cazadors and Deathclaws on their initial playthrough is either one of those people who obsessively attempts to break games, or is lying for internet cool kid points. In Morrowind, even a player blindly following directions will get dumped in front of Caius within ten minutes and then be told "go out on your own, look for freelance work, or trouble. Then, when you're ready, come back, and I'll have orders for you." Obviously the player has the option to not even report to Caius and just head out on their own, but even if you're do report to him, the game actively encourages you to go out in whatever direction you want because it's a living, breathing open-world.
I walked north in NV my first time playing. Climbed up the cliffs and chucked dynamite on the insects and then stealthed past the deathclaws.
 
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RNGsus

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Messages
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I tried in one of my early saves, but I doubt it was my first play through.
Right. As a comparison to say, Morrowind (gold standard for early game freedom imo), a first-time New Vegas player is going to follow the quests leading them through the aforementioned circuit which takes up several hours of playtime. Anyone who says they braved the Cazadors and Deathclaws on their initial playthrough is either one of those people who obsessively attempts to break games, or is lying for internet cool kid points. In Morrowind, even a player blindly following directions will get dumped in front of Caius within ten minutes and then be told "go out on your own, look for freelance work, or trouble. Then, when you're ready, come back, and I'll have orders for you." Obviously the player has the option to not even report to Caius and just head out on their own, but even if you're do report to him, the game actively encourages you to go out in whatever direction you want because it's a living, breathing open-world.
I think its the same concept in both.
 

Azdul

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Langley, Virginia
I can't imagine why anyone would play Oblivion these days. Back in the day when the open world aesthetic was still relatively fresh I could see normies enjoying it sure. But today all you need to do is look one youtube clip of it and see the pudgy faces, horrible mechanics and writing to awkward combat and easily quit such thoughts.
People like the idea of 3D action-RPG real-time roguelike / fantasy world simulator.

MOO + OOO + WAC or FCOM delivers such experience. After 15 years modders got used to weird engine - and the setting is generic and eclectic enough so mods content does not feel out of place.

What's the alternative ? Amulets and Armor ? ASCII roguelikes ?

Morrowind, Daggerfall and Arena have much more limited engines - and we need to wait for OpenMW, DFUnity or OpenTESArena to open up modding possibilities.

Skyrim SE is not so bad - but the mod content will inevitably clash with 'frozen north' / viking vibes of Skyrim art. Waalx, Martigen, Oscuro, Maskar, Warcry or Francesco play fast and loose with adding new creatures and items - and most of new content does not stick out like sore thumb in Oblivion. You just cannot do that with Skyrim - you need to create whole new province to add content with slightly different art style - and it takes ages (see - Beyond Skyrim, Skyblivion or Skywind). Besides - Skyrim is still not available on GOG - so Bethesda can and will break mods compatibility.

TLDR: We should have better modding platform to create our dream roguelike in the fantasy world - but we don't (yet).
 

Funposter

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OOO still uses modded Hunger meshes instead of the ones from Shivering Isles which is just retarded and it's amazing that no one ever bothered to update it. This actually annoyed me enough to stop me from using it.
 

Sykar

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How many people did that on their first playthrough, though?

That does not matter one fucking bit. New Vegas has the decency to give you all the info about the different paths for you to make an informed decision. If you DO pay attention and are curious and explorative you can find an easy solution for either path in Goodsprings. That is peak open world level design. What is retarded and degenerate is Failderp 3s intellctually insulting "you can go anywhere and it won´t be a problem since everything is scaled to you level" hand holding.
 

Azdul

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OOO still uses modded Hunger meshes instead of the ones from Shivering Isles which is just retarded and it's amazing that no one ever bothered to update it. This actually annoyed me enough to stop me from using it.
OOO does not require Shivering Isles. And earlier versions of 'OOO - Shivering Isles' were known to cause random crashes even outside Shivering Isles area - so no one was in a hurry to integrate it into main OOO.

Some older mods contain broken meshes and questionable if not outright broken scripts - and some depend on explicit FormIDs from other mods. Unless mod is completely modular and designed from scratch to take advantage of OBSE (like MOO) - updating the mod without breaking people's mod setups is extremely hard.
 

Ravielsk

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Feb 20, 2021
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Oblivion lets me use spells and weapons at the same time which is why it's better than Skyrim.
Yeah, for all the fuzz Tod made around his "revolutionary" dual wielding system it ultimately amounted to just a downgrade compared to Oblivion.
I really question what the fuck the devs were smoking with the scaling. Seeing bandits running around with glass armor was stupid.
Nothing, I am actually convinced that no one at Bethesda really thinks about their games as a whole. They just make features, test them in a greybox and then implement them without ever looking back. Every one of their games past Morrowind suffers specifically because their feature implementation directly undermines said features. For example Skyrim literary gives you a tutorial on how to break the game with smiting as soon as you enter Whiterun, in fact its the very first thing you can do in Whiterun. It literary snaps the game in half and the only way I can imagine it happening is that no one during development ever bothered to test anything beyond testing it in a greybox, and always only one thing at a time.
 

Azdul

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Consistent world or not, no RPG (computer or otherwise) starts with you being able to run into something that is way out of your league.

What's Gothic?
Oblivion could block out roads to Chorrol with level 3 non-respawnable enemies, roads to Skingrad with level 6 enemies, Kvatch with level 9 enemies - and voila - level scaling issues are gone. Just offer enough quests in each city so player will be able to reach appropriate level. In other words - Gothic-like design, while superior to Elder Scrolls - has its own problems.

Original Oblivion design - created even before Daggerfall was released - assumed that as technology progresses - it will be possible to have much more much more intelligent NPCs on screen than Daggerfall has. And there will be no insane scaling of weapon damage and health points - player will ultimately recruit an army to fight off the invasion. Roads would be patrolled by numerous Imperial Legion soldiers - and there would be no need to downscale / upscale bandits. Powerful enemy factions would just ignore the player (starting as unknown prisoner) - until he makes himself a nuisance - and by that time he'll have powerful allies.

As we know - graphics technology progressed in quite different direction - and it was impossible to implement such design on Xbox 360 - or even 2006 PCs. We've ended up with few level-scaled enemies on screen and 'epic' battles of armies consisting of 6 soldiers each.

Nevertheless - I believe that the original design offers better solution to both level-scaling and enemies blocking access to new areas. Sadly you can see only traces of it in the actual released game.
 

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