Universal acclaim - based on 54 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 54 out of 54
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 54
  3. Negative: 0 out of 54
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  1. It’s just so damned big. That’s what you’ll say after playing Oblivion for more than an hour. Or, for that matter, 50 hours.
  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. Like Homer, once you've begun to consume what this eternity has to offer, you'll have no desire to stop. The fourth Elder Scrolls entry is utterly brilliant and should not be missed by any adventure-spirited gamer.
  4. 100
    If you had anything particularly pressing to be doing at any point over the next few months, it's time to cancel it. Bethesda's much-anticipated fantasy action RPG Oblivion is every bit the game it promised to be, with stunning visuals and vast amounts of engrossing, well-designed gameplay.
  5. The most captivating first-person role-playing game yet. This is essential gaming.
  6. 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.
  7. 100
    Oblivion's more than just a game -- it's an entire world for the taking, the only single-player RPG that could possibly give a game like World of Warcraft a real run for its money.
  8. Worth playing for the sense of discovery—each environment looks different from the last and requires a nuanced reaction—makes the action addictive.
  9. An epic, not only because the immaculate world you inhabit is so immense, but also because the gameplay is fantastically intense.
  10. Computer Games Magazine
    Now, however, the game is here, the hype has receded...and we're left appreciating what might be the best role-playing game ever made. [Jun 2006, p.61]
  11. With its immersive environment, stunningly beautiful graphics, nonlinear gameplay, and extremely customizable player experience, this game accomplishes more than I have expected in a game and is simply difficult to put down.
  12. The graphics are nothing short of incredible. All of the environments, whether they be woodlands, cities or a version of Hell, are highly imaginative and distinct. I didn't detect any reuse of textures. Everything appears to have been created fresh, from scratch.
  13. One of the best packages of the past several years, with no element even average; everything is as close to perfect as can be expected.
  14. 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.
  15. The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion moves the RPG genre forward with a massive world, a beautiful presentation, deep gameplay and action, and many great plots and quests to finish.
  16. Oblivion is by far the closest I have come to playing D&D Sunday afternoons with my friends (yes, I did that, though I’m on medication now), all wrapped up in a stunning package with tens of thousands of lines of spoken dialog and good music.
  17. The standard has been set, and it’s been set ridiculously high. Whether it’s the fantastic production values or its nearly flawless gameplay mechanics, we couldn’t be happier with Oblivion.
  18. The graphics in Oblivion have to be seen to be believed. Screenshots do not do the game justice. This game deserves a "game of the year" nod just for its artistic beauty.
  19. This is an enormous world that will leave you enchanted, occasionally regretting your decisions, sometimes proud and always enthralled.
  20. One of those truly satisfying gems that show up every now and then, and one of the most brilliantly conceived role-playing games you will play this year.
  21. Overall, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion is one game that should not be missed. Oblivion offers up an overwhelming amount of content, coupled with one of the largest and most realistic environments ever seen in a RPG.
  22. PC Gamer
    The best compliment I can pay Oblivion is that it achieves far more than I'd even thought possible. It's a superlative RPG. [May 2006, p.80]
  23. There’s certainly room for improvement, we could in fact stand to enjoy some randomly generated quests like in Daggerfall and a bigger game world, but Oblivion is as close to free-form RPG perfection as you can get nowadays.
  24. Game Informer
    The bar for the next generarion of RPG's has been set. [May 2006, p.92]
  25. If you love gaming - if you love leaving your identity at the door and embarking on red-blooded adventure that's previously only been the domain of high literature and childhood imagination, I can give no higher recommendation. Make no mistake, this is more than the best role-playing game of our times. It's the best one we've ever seen.
  26. The scale, beauty and immersion of the game’s open-ended world is unprecedented, the character creation and progression systems are deep and involving and the gameplay that backs it all up is solid and insatiably addictive.
  27. A refreshing, immersive, massive, satisfying and hugely impressive game.
  28. Even though Oblivion might hurt your PC in ways it hasn't been hurt or overheated before, and barring certain technical drawbacks, (one of which would be an occasional AI quirk from the friendly NPCs or a rough-around-the-edges side quest line), Bethesda just pushes the bar in every possible way.
  29. netjak
    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.
  30. On its own merits, Oblivion is an amazing hack and slash game with many strong roleplaying entities and technological achievements. All of the tools are there for a mind blowing RPG.
  31. 93
    The best single player role playing experience to come along in years.
  32. "Morrowind" earned recognition for being one of the best role-playing games in years, but the immersive and long-lasting experience it provided wasn't for everyone. Oblivion is hands-down better, so much so that even those who'd normally have no interest in a role-playing game should find it hard to resist getting swept up in this big, beautiful, meticulously crafted world.
  33. PC Gamer UK
    Oblivion is a messy masterpiece; accomplished, bold, huge and occasionally rough around the edges. Your adventures are more varied than those of any other game I could name, and magnificently rendered by the game's powerhouse graphics and physics... Narcotically addictive. [Apr 2006, p.68]
  34. Oblivion clearly isn't for everyone, but if open-ended sandbox games are your thing, and if you've got a hundred or so hours to just relax in another world, it sounds like Bethesda has created a new game with your name plastered all over it.
  35. Games Master UK
    It's been a slow few years for the single-player RPG. This makes up for all of it. [May 2006, p.68]
  36. PC Format
    The 21st Century's finest, most involving roleplaying game so far. [May 2006, p.85]
  37. A game so vast and varied that it would probably take hundreds of hours of play to see and experience everything, if that is possible at all.
  38. While the game does have a few flaws, there is simply nothing else out there like Oblivion. This is your early contender for Game of the Year, regardless of platform.
  39. Pelit (Finland)
    Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion finally has what the other Elder Scrolls games have striven for: a fascinating and believable fantasy world with tons of things to do and enjoy. The story and missions are crafted a lot better than before and you can easily lose yourself in the game watching the incredible graphics while the sun slowly sets in the horizon. Truly, an experience. [May 2006]
  40. The number of options is so vast, it's nearly paralyzing figuring out what it is you want to do next.
  41. The pacing in Oblivion is better; things get interesting much quicker which leads to a faster sense of accomplishment.
  42. AceGamez
    People wanting big, immersing RPG stories would be best advised to look at "The Longest Journey" games instead, but most fans of the series, despite the various changes that have made it more of an RPG-Lite, will not be disappointed by what Oblivion has to offer.
  43. Truly what makes the game great is the world itself, which is just so much fun to explore.
  44. 90
    Do yourself a favor, if you haven't gotten a hold of this and you're at all into PC RPGing, it's a necessity buy.
  45. Bethesda's "Morrowind" is a great videogame, but its successor, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, does exactly what every sequel should do, which is taking its predecessor, beat the hell out of it, and leave it for dead.
  46. Oblivion is a game that defines freedom within a videogame, one that accepts whatever role players choose and allowing them to play the game as they see fit; for this reason alone, Oblivion is a game with very few rivals - a flawed masterpiece.
  47. 90
    Much like that infamous Japanese MMORPG, Oblivion promises total freedom of character generation but fails to deliver that perfectly.
  48. It's mechanically wonderful, visually awesome, and not terribly innovative in plot. If you're new to the Elder Scrolls or RPGs, by all means, jump in here.
  49. Oblivion is a game people will still be calling a classic a decade from now—and in the fickle world of gaming, that's high praise indeed.
  50. Oblivion will consume you. It'll consume your life, your performance at work will suffer and you might not see friends in weeks. With hundreds of hours of gameplay, and an unprecedented amount of quests to be completed, I couldn't possibly recommend Oblivion enough.
  51. games(TM)
    It's heavily steeped in RPG tradition, however, its appeal stretches far beyond the hardcore RPG demographic thanks to its ease of play, boundless ambition and focused attention to detail. [May 2006, p.112]
  52. Although some aspects of the game can’t be denied – the stupidity of the NPC’s (especially when they try to help you in a fight), the system requirements, the stability issues, the bugs – everything else is open for debate.
  53. 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.
  54. Edge Magazine
    It’s debatable whether Oblivion is a great adventure, but it’s certainly one of the broadest around and one that’s a willing canvas for a variety of approaches from its players. [May 2006, p.84]

Awards & Rankings

User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 3541 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. 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 andHonestly, 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! Full Review »
  2. Mar 9, 2011
    Oblivion is a great introduction into the Elder Scrolls. I loved it so much when I first played it. However, after you play Morrowind youOblivion is a great introduction into the Elder Scrolls. I loved it so much when I first played it. However, after you play Morrowind you realize how much potential Oblivion threw away. Oblivion is an example of the terrible direction the game industry is starting to go into: Games that are worth buying, and are extremely great in the beginning, but lack the long term value that is very key to have to prevent boredom in the future again. When you finish up all the quests (Which are a lot, but still has significantly less compared to Morrowind) there is no point to play anymore. The dungeons feel prefabricated just like Daggerfall and there is nothing really "new" to explore. The vast majority of them are just filled with common monsters and loot that becomes worthless after you get the best armor and weapons (Which can be gotten fairly easily at higher levels). Oblivion is worth the money, but in the long run is no where near as RPG satisfying Morrowind was. That is what we play RPGs for, the satisfaction of completing quests or completing leveling goals or finding special items. Oblivion denies that ability of satisfaction way too early compared to its predecessors. If you are reading these reviews though you are probably considering buying it. In a simple answer, of course. Well worth the money it costs now. Full Review »
  3. Apr 26, 2011
    I can't really give it anything less after putting 100+ hours into it and enjoying every minute of it. of course it does have some flawsI can't really give it anything less after putting 100+ hours into it and enjoying every minute of it. of course it does have some flaws including repetitive dungeons, not rewarding exploration enough, bad levelling system and game play bugs. overall it is a fantastic game. Full Review »