User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 996 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 70 out of 996

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  1. Nov 22, 2010
    I'll give you a heads-up now, just because it's made by the same people who made Fallout 3 doesn't mean it's any good so don't waste your money!!!

    Firstly, the AI has hardly been touched. Yes, artificial intelligence is a difficult thing to program but really, when I murder the bandit on the left and the bandit on the right, the guy on the corpse should realize something is terribly
    wrong, instead of wandering around hopelessly. Similarly, it is brutally and unforgiving when it comes to accidental thievery. Try to click on the bartender to talk to her, and likely you'll accidentally click on an alcohol bottle. THIEF!!! she cries out, and even if you put the bottle down immediately, a guard will escort you to the castle, where you'll have to pay a fine for touching a bottle on a bar. Character interaction is annoyingly weak. To get a character to like you, you'll need to, in a brief period of time, Boast, Joke, Admire, or Coerce him/her, repeatedly, via a mini-game. Bashing heads solves almost every quest, so the talking issues in the game are neatly covered up by massive bloodshed (although corpse cleanup isn't so good; this one poor shop has had 3 naked corpses in it for months now).

    Also, the main story line is, no fun. It's not just the "you start in a prison with no equipment or past" lameness that's been done so many times before. Opening up the gate from a hellish world all through the countryside, you're told things like, "You must save him RIGHT NOW" but we still have the theme of do whatever you want so the invasion or execution or whatever will patiently wait until you go off and become head of every guild, visit every city a dozen times, or do whatever else you feel like. The main quest just doesn't feel right in this context. You'll also need to close many gates, and the sense of accomplishment for doing so is a bit boring, as each close the gate quest is almost the same.

    Finally, we have an overall design flaw here. Usually, once your character gets above level 25 in any game, there is nothing left to challenge you, making the whole game extremely easy. Oblivion (tries) fixes this by making the monsters and treasures as your character does. So, a cave that would hold rats for your first level character holds trolls at a higher level. It sounds nice, but it creates new problems as well. First, the thrill of exploration drops off a bit; I know the monsters I meet and treasure I gather will all be set to my level, there's no danger in encountering something far too tough for me to defeat with a simple thumping, and there's no thrill of finding a great artifact far outside the power of my character. Second, the non-player characters generally aren't leveled. A number of missions grant you help from additional soldiers and such. If you're too high a level, the monsters you encounter will toss those soldiers around like confetti; leaving you all alone to deal with a horde of monsters (at least you can loot the soldiers corpses for extra gold). Curiously, the best counter to this is to design a character that does NOT go up levels. By basing your character around little used or unnecessary skills, you can get a character that goes up levels at a slow enough pace that you can see all the game has to offer; go up levels too quickly, and you'll miss many monsters that simply won't appear for high level characters.

    So like I told you at the beginning, DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY! (The only reason I gave it a 2 was because of the lovely graphics!)
  2. Feb 14, 2013
    Enemies scale to your level stupidity. I remember dying in a cave so I left it, leveled up, came across the same cave later on and entered it again expecting to kick some butt. But I died again because the enemies leveled up as well. Stupid. Apparently leveling up my character is POINTLESS in this game. The game world is extremely bland and repetitive. Oh look, the same ruins I've seen the last 10 times. Everything is so picture perfect it feels like I'm walking in an urban park. No grit or realism in the world. Caves are pointless to explore all enemies and loot are scaled to me anyway. When you're exploring everything feels spreadsheety. Oh look, I see somebody in the distance I wonder who they are? Oh wait, sigh, they're an enemy that simply charges at me when they see me. No witty or interesting conversation to be had here. NPCs are robotic and major immersion breakers. There are guards hiding in every closet and basement, just watching and waiting to see if you'll steal that spoon, and then they'll get on their laptops and enter your name in a database, flagged as most wanted, putting every guard in the enter realm on high alert and hunt you down like you're OBL. Oblivion gates are ok the first time. But after the first one, ugh. Bethesda doesn't understand what immersion is so I'm walking on the main road to Kavatch when I see a cave just off the road, along with a big "you have discovered such and such cave", well no sh-t, you put it on the main road like a gas station. Don't want to make this next gen gamer have to go out of their way and discover the cave for themselves they might get frustrated and not buy our next game. Who cares about mystery and exploration when we can just put our dungeons and ruins on the main road like tourist attractions. Along the same road was a goblin encampment. At first I thought they must be friendly goblins being so close to the road and all but no, they attacked me on sight (just like every. single. last. enemy. in. this. game.) Someone should probably tell that guard I just saw that THERE'S A GOBLIN ENCAMPMENT JUST OFF THE MAIN ROAD! If you're looking for a good role playing game then pick up Gothic 3 Enhanced Edition. It's a game where you actually have to buy the world map IN GAME, imagine that Bethesda! Expand
  3. Nov 26, 2011
    Undoubtedly, this game is the worst excuse for a piece of electronic data. I had the game for one a matter of hours before deciding to return it the next day. It is worse than all the other washed-up shooters, redundant role-playing-games, and stupid strategy games. It is so very bland, boring, redundant, purpose-defeating, sad, and foreboding in story. I will never buy such an atrocity and leave such a statement for others to view and heed. Expand

Universal acclaim - based on 90 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 90 out of 90
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 90
  3. Negative: 0 out of 90
  1. A refreshing, immersive, massive, satisfying and hugely impressive game.
  2. Oblivion not only raises the bar in the visual and audio modules but also in the gameplay and presentation department, making it easily one of the most recommendable titles to anyone who has ever enjoyed the thought of truly doing whatever they want in a video game, in a world where actions actually mean something.
  3. Oblivion is so deep it is hard to escape its grasp. Few things keep it down, such as loading times, and a few problems with visuals and sound, but the gameplay, the most important piece is dead-on.