The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion Image

Universal acclaim - based on 54 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 1770 Ratings

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  • Summary: Oblivion is a single-player game that takes place in Tamriel's capital province, Cyrodiil. You are given the task of finding the hidden heir to a throne that sits empty, the previous emperor having been killed by an unknown assassin. With no true Emperor, the gates to Oblivion (the equivalent of hell in the world of Tamriel) open, and demons begin to invade Cyrodiil and attack its people and towns. It's up to you to find the lost heir to the throne and unravel the sinister plot that threatens to destroy all of Tamriel. In keeping with the Elder Scrolls tradition, players have the option to experience the main quest at their own pace, and there are plenty of opportunities to explore the vast world and make your own way. Numerous factions can be joined, such as the thieves or mages guilds, and each contains its own complete storyline and the chance to rise to the head of the faction and reap further rewards. Oblivion features a groundbreaking new AI system, called Radiant AI, which gives non-player characters (NPCs) the ability to make their own choices based on the world around them. They decide where to eat or who to talk to and what they say. They sleep, go to church, and even steal items, all based on their individual characteristics. Full facial animations and lip-synching, combined with full speech for all dialog, allows NPCs to come to life like never before. [Bethesda] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 54 out of 54
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 54
  3. Negative: 0 out of 54
  1. 100
    The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion is less a videogame and more a life in and of itself. The longer I’m away from it the more I come to appreciate it.
  2. 100
    I honestly have to say that I am in favour of most of the changes and I think Oblivion is an awesome achievement from Bethesda.
  3. Oblivion is far from a perfect game, but I can think of very few titles that come as close. It’s among the very best in terms of gameplay, audio, and graphics.
  4. 94
    An incredibly solid RPG. The sheer variety of gameplay elements available, paths you can take, and quests in the game make it well worth a purchase. There is no reason why any RPG aficionado should not own this title.
  5. The 21st Century's finest, most involving roleplaying game so far. [May 2006, p.85]
  6. The number of options is so vast, it's nearly paralyzing figuring out what it is you want to do next.
  7. 80
    Assuming one has a system with the muscle to run the game and the player is willing to accept some technical glitches, there simply isn't a better RPG experience available.

See all 54 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 70 out of 466
  1. OskarS.
    Feb 6, 2008
    This is a wonderful game with loads of options. If you get the expansions and download a few nice mods, the possibilities are almost endless! When you have learned to use the "TES 4 Mod Maker", you can modify the game in any way you like. Any RPG fans who doesn't require a multiplayer part would love this game! Expand
  2. Sep 24, 2011
    This game really deserves no less than a 10 and is, for sure, in my top favorites. Which is saying a lot because I don't really like "fantasy" dragons and such, type games. My friends made me play it since I was such a fallout 3 fan (which is also on my top favs, maybe even number 1) and I insisted that I wouldn't like it since it was so fantasyish, but the depth of the game... I don't think I ever even finished the main quest line since I've always kept myself busy with hours upon hours of side things to do, and exploring in this vast map, and the character progression is great, I love the stat system. you use something it levels, and then you combine that with the base stat system that you can put stats in as you level. Amazing system, works kind of like how Congress and House is Supposed to, haha. Expand
  3. May 1, 2011
    Honestly, I don't understand most of the negative criticism for this game. A HUGE improvement on TES3: Morrowind in terms of combat and atmosphere. Combat is much more engaging, as it should be for this style of game. Quests are entertaining and tough enemies are very challenging (until you are extremely high level). Coupled with a do-anything-you-want style world, this game will entertain for hours. My only complaint is that it ended so soon. The world is much smaller than its predecessor, Morrowind. Players of that game will find the world somewhat confining, and you definitely won't get the 500+ hours of gameplay like you did in that title. An awesome game, though. Can't wait for TES V! Expand
  4. Dec 15, 2010
    Fantastic Game. The freedom we have to mount classes , magics and our own alternative paths and quests in the game are really unique. Plus , instead of other famous RPG like games, it brings us the experience of good first person combat. Expand
  5. Jan 5, 2013
    Oblivion is no doubt an excellent game. My review might be a bit judgement-clouded because I've played Skyrim and waited too long to do a review on this game. On one hand, the storytelling, character development, spells and variety of weapons/skills/potions are all done with brilliance. On the other hand, some parts of the game seem insanely rushed and unpolished. The caves are copy and pastes. The time-freezing when talking to NPC's is very stupid and sucks away the atmosphere. The level up system is pretty bad, but tolerable... Somewhat. Some NPC's will change the pitch of their voice out of nowhere. The sneaking is done well, but can be very unpredictable and frustrating because you can still be detected no matter how quiet or far away you were. No diagonal running, ugh. The dialogue between NPC's is as bad as a Tommy Wiseau movie. Some potions found in the game have hardly any reason to exist, because potions like "Restore 1 Luck Point" is beyond trivial. Overall, the game is great, but the many glitches and laziness of the game is there too. Expand
  6. RicM.
    Apr 11, 2006
    This game is extremely big, but ultimately extremely empty and without reward. The main story will only take a few hours to beat, regardless of what other people say. Since there is level scaling, there is very little reward for leveling up and because of the scaling you can literally beat the game on level 1 if you so choose. There are a suprising low variety of places to visit (mostly just town, cave, ruin or planes to oblivion) and enemies to fight. I got very tired venturing into the gates of oblivion to fight only a handful of enemies each time, even if you level up a lot. The main story, as well as completing any of the guilds, leaves a great deal to be desired. In fact, you do not even get to fight the end boss yourself, you just watch this fight and that's it. Since the story is so weak, the ending is weak and feels like a waste of time. I really wanted to give this game a 10, I had a lot of fun and it was worth the $50 I suppose, but I feel that this is one of those rare games that could've been amazing, but it was only good. While better than Morrowind, it still doesn't have an engaging story. It just feels like you're playing an MMORPG that is only for one player really. Too bad you can't combine the size and beauty of this game with the focus and NPC interactivity of Fable. It's also VERY VERY VERY annoying how every guard everywhere has telepathy and if you stealthy kill one all the sudden there's a 1000 bounty on your head no matter where you go, and the guards will never ever stop pursuing you. This game should've been delayed a long while. Collapse
  7. bosochargedhercegovan
    Nov 4, 2006
    the graphics are drab, unbearable shit. i just want to tear the screen apart when I see them. its almost as if the developers mixed up their own spit and vomit and used that as inspiration. second, the artists are hired from some shitty mental insitution where they have daily art lessons. there is absolutely NOTHING inspiring or captivating about them at all. Decade old games like Mario or Zelda have more interesting and for the most part better graphics than oblivion. oblivion makes use of innovations like antialiasing and ASF and thats it.

    second the engine used is shit. gamebryo?? lol are you kidding. the programmers are shit. ever1 that worked on this game were the bottom scrapers of the industry. That is because Bethesda is a cheap-arse company that spends all its money on promotion and making crappy movie tie-ins.

    NWN2 is out now!! its not as good as i thought but kicks Obliviooons arse anyday.

See all 466 User Reviews