Pros Looks beautiful, excellent character customization, arrow ballistics!
Cons Boring voice acting, irritating interface, lack of aesthetics, puzzling AI at times
Summary First, of course, the pros. I was very excited from the get-go about Oblivion's development and eventual release. As a fan of the previous installment of the game, Morrowind, I looked forward to a continuation of the quality I found. Morrowind's dismal exteriors and mind-numbingly lackluster AI, I was certain, would be amended in Oblivion. And oh, was I right. Mostly.
Let me say that Oblivion is one of the most beautiful games that I have ever seen, even with a computer that isn't capable of running at "Very High" settings. The environment itself is captivating; the fauna, terrain, and the layout of the worldmap is wonderful. At higher settings I see even more, and to stand at the top of a high hill and see far out into the distance is breathtaking.
Also fantastic is the ability to *deeply* customize the way your character looks. While baffling at times (why would anyone want a purple-foreheaded Dunmer?) it is fun to play with. I can play a lanky orc or a fat-faced Bosmer, should I like. And it's those choices that make me a happy gamer.
Thirdly...the ability to recover most fired arrows (and any arrow that doesn't hit a creature) is just fantastic. The arrows fly true to reality (though I haven't tried shooting straight up...need to do that, since in Morrowind even a slow arrow would never stop travelling upwards).
And now...the cons. Since most of them do not have to do with the game's actual structure, I'll go over the ones that do.
The interface. Why must I access everything through Tab? Why not make it so that (by default) 'M' will bring up my map, 'I' my inventory, so on and so forth? Maybe there's some fantastic reasoning for making everything accessed through Tab, but I'm not seeing it.
The AI does really strange things at times. Maybe it's just me, but if a Khajiit appears out of nowhere just as a dead body goes flying over me...and I *WATCH* it go over...I would probably do something other than look at this mysteriously-appearing Khajiit than ask it how it's doing. It's not really a problem, I suppose, but maybe Bethesda could have added some kind of AI reaction to dead bodies? Just a thought.
Now for the aesthetic complaints.
One is a lack of medium armor. I've heard people say that it had no point, but I happen to think that the best-looking armor sets in Morrowind were medium (such as Royal Guard, Gha-Julan and Armun-An Bonemold, and the Ordinator suits). It would have been nice to see it again.
Lack of architectural uniqueness. Maybe it was because the setting is in Cyrodiil and not Morrowind, but it was boring to see Medieval-looking cities, rather than the fascinating differences between Redoran, Hlaalu, and Telvanni architecture. No interesting Daedric ruins, either, just the ones that look like any old Greek ruin. At least the dungeons aren't so boring.
My biggest aesthetic complaint is the voice acting. Particularly the voice acting of the races that aren't human. The Argonians, Orcs, and Khajiit are especially disappointing. What happened to the *character* that they had in Morrowind? Now they sound like humans with nasal congestion, at best, and completely human, at worst. I haven't noticed any particular snobbishness in the Altmer or a quirkiness in the Bosmer. Also sad is that lack of gruff sarcasm that Dunmer had. What was more unsettling than running off with half of the contents of the High Fane, successfully sneaking out the door, and then hearing "Justice never sleeps" as soon as the exterior loads?
All in all, Oblivion is a great, fun game. But it lacks those little touches that made Morrowind so fun, even if it does look and run better overall.
Pros where to start? graphics settings, weapon selection, armor classes, and in depth story line
Cons some invisable walls....uhhh there's not much else lol
Summary say good bye to the family for about a week and say hello to a graphically stunning first person rpg that is sure to grab you dangly-doos. i bought this game 3 weeks ago and have already spent 175 hours on this game.
Pros Great storyline, awesome graphics, immersive gameplay. NPC's are so realistic you miss them when you're not playing.
Cons Magic and potions are, of course, a steep learning curve. Occasional system hangs.
Summary This game is by far the nicest RPG I've ever played. The look and feel of everthing is nothing short of stunning. When I was riding horseback on my way to the Temple, between the realistic bounce and jitter and the sounds of the horse's hooves and leather and tack noises, I felt like I was back in the saddle high in the Chilcotin in British Columbia on the pack trip we took last summer. The dungeons and towers in Oblivion are top notch, and it looks like I'll be wrapped up in this one for the whole summer and probably into the fall the way the game plays. Well done Bethesda!
Pros Incredible depth and detail, decent replay value
Cons Lots of bugs that still need patching, no multi-player or online options
Summary This is a game I can play and enjoy. I love non-linear games that let you do what you want, go where you want and not follow the main story if that's what you desire. The Elder Scroll series has always had this in mind and has improved it over the years. This is the biggest leap yet in game play and performance yet in any game of this kind.
Character creation is extremely detailed and could take quite a while depending on how detailed you want to craft your character. The game always starts you in the same dungeon which you have to crawl through and sets up the crisis in the game. After that, you can completely ignore the main game and live a life of your choosing or complete the main quest or a combo of both.
My hope is that there will be expansion packs and mods for this game since it has massive potential. I love the fact that you can buy houses and own horses and be as good or rotten as you want. The NPC's speak full dialog now which is a welcome change over having to read everything like earlier versions.
Biggest issue for many is that the game pushes hardware to its limits and can slow even the fastest computer to a crawl with options turned on. Myself, I have experienced frequent lockups despite patching the game and updating drivers. I hope that a new patch will address these issues soon so I can keep playing.
When it runs, it is the best of all games so far in this genre. I highly recommend it.
Pros Nice story lines, characters, landscape and virtualy realistic scenery.
Cons Demanding on your system and could maxed out your system depending on game settings and hardware.
Summary When using this game at its maximum settings, a Radeon X1900 XTX or equal card is required for fluid game play since Oblivion uses many shader effects.
Using my Radeon X1800XT, I was able to use the game at is maximum setting but I experience some lag and glitches.
Hard drive performance may increase frame rates (3-5 fps), since the hard drive is accessed a bundle during game play, especially when loading landscapes. In addition, disabling grass shadows improves game performance.
Some folks might complaint because their system might not have what it takes to play The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion