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> The Future, I had to do it.
Channler
post Nov 13 2007, 04:16 PM
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So I have an invariable amount of time a day to sit down and reflect. And today I sat down at my computer and decided to type in a few letters that haven't graced my computer in a long 2 or 3 years. Morrowind.com

We all know this just leads to the TES main site, but it reminded me, before the release/announcement of Oblivion, the fervor that which I checked those forums every day, and the absolute excitement I received when the Daedric runes came up when I visited the site.

Well I don't know why, but I feel a little bit of that excitement again. I almost feel like I'm about to jump into the goon rush that is the elder scrolls forums and jump into one of those "TESV" threads. Interesting stuff guessing the future.

Anyways so I think I'll be the first to open up with the grossly general question..

What do you hope for, for TESV?


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mplantinga
post Nov 13 2007, 04:57 PM
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I am concerned about TESV. With the looming possibility of an Elder Scrolls online, I worry that the single-player game will continue to head toward its seemingly inevitable extinction. As cliche as the player-hero scenario is, I've not yet managed to feel drawn into the MMORPG scene; it seems to expensive and the player-character too insignificant.

Online-rants aside, I do have some thoughts as to what I would like to see in TES-V:

1. Story.

A good game depends on a good story. This is not easy. I certainly won't say that Morrowind had the best game story ever, but IMO it was better than Oblivion. (In Oblivion's defense, the Dark Brotherhood quests were somewhat more imaginative than the Bethesda average). The story should be exciting to discover, and preferably, offer choices to the character that have permanent effects on the world. Turning down a quest or choosing option A over option B should have consequences, perhaps eliminating possible future quests, changing the direction of the main plot, etc. A good quest has multiple solutions with different consequences. Again, the Dark Brotherhood quests did probably the best job of this, allowing both brute force approaches and stealthy approaches (which usually gave the better reward).

2. Replayability

For a game to rank among my favorite games, it has to be a game that I want to play over and over, creating new characters just to have the experience of doing it all again. Morrowind had the advantage of some mutually-exclusive storylines that forced you to make new characters to experience all of them. Oblivion seemed to have ignored this in favor of "be anyone, do anything." Which, by the way, is not the best choice ever. It isn't reasonable for the wimpy (but powerful) mage to join the fighter's guild. He can't even swing a sword or use armor, and all of a sudden he's the head of the fighter's guild? That seems rather ridiculous to me. Better to put significant restrictions (ie skills or attributes) to ensure that the characters skills match the guild in question.

3. Unique player characters

This is something that both Morrowind and Oblivion failed at miserably. It didn't really matter what race or birthsign you picked; by level 20 you could master whatever you chose and a Breton Mage could beat an Orc in an axe fight. Basically, this meant that race/sign (and even class) could be chosen randomly, with no permanent consequences. In defense of Bethesda, it is likely reasonable that, with enough effort, and wimpy mage could become a decent swordfighter, but really, if you wanted to be a swordfighter, you should have been a Warrior, not a mage. This is one of the reasons I enjoyed Galsiah's character development mod, because the choices you made during character generation actually mattered.

4. Intelligent leveling

IMO the leveling system in Morrowind was rather dumb, and I was annoyed when they kept it in Oblivion. With the obvious interest in GCD, madd leveler, etc, I thought it was obvious that the leveling system was broken; it seems I was right, because there are a plethora of comparable mods for Oblivion. Perhaps Bethesda will learn from this and get it right with TESV. I won't hold my breath, though.

In addition to fixing the way the player character levels, something must also be done about enemy levels. In Morrowind, once you reached level 20 (approximately), you became invincible, and nothing could really challenge you. In Oblivion, everything levels with you, which means there is no point in leveling. Both of these approaches failed to deliver consistent, challenging, and rewarding gameplay. There has to be some happy medium whereby enemies remain a challenge, but there is some benefit to leveling. I don't know how to do that, but I don't make games. It's their job to figure that out.


Final thoughts (for this post, anyway)

Don't get me wrong, I've enjoyed playing both Morrowind and Oblivion. But the number of hours I've spent playing Oblivion pales in comparison with how much time I've spent with Morrowind, and that's not just because I've had Morrowind longer. I really believe that Morrowind was a superior game to Oblivion, and I'm worried that TESV will continue the trend and be worse again. I don't really care about graphics or voice acting, I just want a game that's fun to play, where the game mechanics don't annoy you and where you might actually consider playing the unmodded game more than once (I personally can't play Oblivion without mods; Morrowind I might again sometime). The things I discussed above are the things I most want to see improved in TESV. I really hope that they are.
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Pisces
post Nov 13 2007, 10:50 PM
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QUOTE(mplantinga @ Nov 14 2007, 04:57 AM) *

IMO the leveling system in Morrowind was rather dumb, and I was annoyed when they kept it in Oblivion. With the obvious interest in GCD, madd leveler, etc, I thought it was obvious that the leveling system was broken; it seems I was right, because there are a plethora of comparable mods for Oblivion. Perhaps Bethesda will learn from this and get it right with TESV. I won't hold my breath, though.

In addition to fixing the way the player character levels, something must also be done about enemy levels. In Morrowind, once you reached level 20 (approximately), you became invincible, and nothing could really challenge you. In Oblivion, everything levels with you, which means there is no point in leveling. Both of these approaches failed to deliver consistent, challenging, and rewarding gameplay. There has to be some happy medium whereby enemies remain a challenge, but there is some benefit to leveling. I don't know how to do that, but I don't make games. It's their job to figure that out.


Well, most games have a closed system where you travel the game world in a linear fashion and for some reason all the scary monsters wait for you at the end of your destination, getting progressively tougher mysteriously at the same rate as you get stronger. MW had an open system, all the monsters weren't leveled but the type of monster which would appear was based on your level, for some reason hungers are too afraid to wander the wilderness when you were level 1. But there was also areas which either weren't leveled or leveled to be impossible when you are low level, so at low level you would sort of have to choose which area you go to, eg. walking into a daedra infected cave is suicide at level 1 but you can still do this. The problem with morrowind is that it only has creatures for up to level 20, they never expected anyone to play longer than this, and the difference between a dwemer ruin and a daedric one is only a couple of levels, which most players will level about 4 levels while walking past a daedric and dwemer ruin. Its actually fairly easy to go in and change everything so the game will last longer just by increasing the levels of everything.

Oh and I quite liked the level system. I thought all the mods changing it were more a symptom of people who want to change MW/Oblivion into other favourite/childhood games, along with the mods to add the armour/clothing/weapons from those games and the mods to turn the game into those games.
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mplantinga
post Nov 14 2007, 12:22 AM
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QUOTE(Pisces @ Nov 13 2007, 03:50 PM) *

But there was also areas which either weren't leveled or leveled to be impossible when you are low level, so at low level you would sort of have to choose which area you go to, eg. walking into a daedra infected cave is suicide at level 1 but you can still do this.


This was definitely a good thing; there should be places that your character isn't ready to go. Oblivion screwed this up by making everything tied to your level, thus enabling you to become the head of everything and savior of Cyrodiil at level 2.

QUOTE(Pisces @ Nov 13 2007, 03:50 PM) *

Oh and I quite liked the level system. I thought all the mods changing it were more a symptom of people who want to change MW/Oblivion into other favourite/childhood games, along with the mods to add the armour/clothing/weapons from those games and the mods to turn the game into those games.


I always felt that, to properly deal with the leveled creatures in Morrowind using the default leveling system required too much attention to training misc. skills to gain the level-up attribute bonuses that would allow you to actually keep up with the leveled creatures. You could argue that GCD goes too far from vanilla in the changes in makes; the Madd leveler tried much harder to stay close to the original intent while simply allowing you to play without having to focus on level-up bonuses to attributes. In Oblivion, this problem was even worse; if you didn't pay attention to the level-up bonuses, you could find the leveled enemies getting harder as you leveled up, rather than easier, making leveling not useless, but harmful.

I agree about the armor/clothing/weapons mods (mostly). I usually use vanilla versions of these, and avoid the mods that add in things that feel really out of place in that game world. I'm not interested in turning the game into something else, so much as simply improving some of the annoying things (like issues with level vs leveled enemies) to keep the game fun.
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Pisces
post Nov 14 2007, 01:10 AM
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I think oblivion could have been a much better game if they just spent more time on it. It seems they spent all this time working on a brand new engine, state of the art graphics and the newest AI they didn't have time to make the actual game. In the end the brand new engine meant they couldn't include things like horse combat, crossbows, throwing weapons and the fun spells. Graphics were good though, but they were kinda dull in a lot of places. The game world was significantly smaller, ok, they claim its 50% larger, but that doesn't count when you move 100% faster and objects of interest are 150% less dense, you have less cities, less NPCs, less quests and less unique spaces (though there were some). And the new AI was chaotic, so they can't claim they fixed/removed the bugs and they only programmed in the AI's use for about 20 NPCs, and even then no where near the full potential of what they could do.

So for TES V, I hope they a) ditch the oblivion creature leveling system because no one likes it. cool.gif Use less out there technology and focus on what they can do so there is lots of game to be played rather than lots of bugs and missing features. c) Make the game dirty, ugly and realistic which was another thing which made the series different. I always want to throw up when I see final fantasy or WoW graphics, they just look so compassion and cartoony. d) extend the low level area of the game, why have chittin in MW if you can get iron or even steel immediately? and the low level, poor part of the game is damn fun. e) Make it so you can spend many many hours in 1 city or the forest without going somewhere else, maybe with minigames, or functional and interesting merchantism and hunting, it adds to the variety of a normal game and gives the possibility of themed players.
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Lord Revan
post Nov 14 2007, 02:18 PM
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Well if ypu want new races then I cpuld give Bethes... JK, I wouldn't give Beth *my* races to patent and use.

And maybe TESV can have action/adventure elements to it, like there's a part where you can't kill something "at the moment."
Or the AIs interact with each other besides talking or simply swinging blades/throwqing spells at each other.

This could be like unique animations (execution stab/decapitating blow). And another thing, where you hit something or someone should matter.
In real life any arrow going through someone's head is pretty lethal (especially if it goes all the way and out the other side).
Any arrow to the shoulder doesn't seem to affect anybody, they still swing heavy weapons or slash you as if there isn't a long piece of wood or metal in any important muscle.

And if arrows can stick to wood now, then shouldn't you be able to pin things that are back to back with a tree or something?

I'll monologue again later.... Be afraid!
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Rane
post Nov 14 2007, 10:31 PM
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QUOTE(mplantinga @ Nov 13 2007, 05:57 PM) *

1. Story.
<snip>
2. Replayability
<snip>
3. Unique player characters
<snip>
4. Intelligent leveling
<snip>


All this, plus a world that is actually worth exploring. Unique encounters/artifacts/items with fixed locations instead of having everything (or almost everything) scaled to your level/randomized. Noticeably different regions and locations, not a bunch of dungeons/ruins/whatever that all feel the same. And locations that actually change as the story progresses and keep changing (I'm looking at you, Kvatch). For a game where the exploration of the game world plays a huge role, the exploration should damn better be interesting and fun.


Yeah, fat chance of this ever happening, eh?
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Olen
post Nov 14 2007, 10:45 PM
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[quotee) Make it so you can spend many many hours in 1 city or the forest without going somewhere else, maybe with minigames,[/quote]

I'd disagree with this. How many times have you hear the oblivion lockpicking refered to as the annoying lockpicking minigame. I thought one of the best bits about morrowind was the immersion it gave by avoiding all minigames and cut scenes (with the exception of starting and winning). I'd agree the leveling system needs an overhaul.

I'd like a darker story line too, oblivion was a bit too happy good vs. evil for my liking, another great part of morrowind was that its story was a bit darker. Who really killed Nevar? etc. And the sixth house was a bit odd whereas the mythic dawn were just deluded.


Saying that morrowinds combat system was awful and a similar improvment to that that was seen in oblivion would be awsome, and more weapon skills with more pronounced advantages/disadvantages. It doesn't really matter what weapon you use so the premade classes with both blade and blunt (and more in morrowind) were a waste of a major pick seing as you would focus on one normally. But if some weapons were good against others or against certain races or creatures it would be worth having more than one....

And bigger with more random quests and little caves for a couple of minutes entertainment. Vanila morrowind has 2675 named NPCs whereas oblivion has 855 (http://www.uesp.net/wiki/Tamriel:Demographics) thats quite a difference and lost oblivion the sense of depth morrowind has.

Thats what made morrowind better was the sense of depth. There were side conflicts which were largely undealt with in the main stories, there were loads of towns (most of which were just a little smaller than the 'cities' of oblivion).

So in short make it big, put lots of unrealated side stuff in to give it depth and make it have strong dark storylines. And fiddle with the actual balance of the game too. One thing they did get right in oblivion was the perks as you went up in skill, I liked them.


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Rane
post Nov 14 2007, 11:08 PM
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QUOTE(Olen @ Nov 14 2007, 11:45 PM) *

I'd disagree with this. How many times have you hear the oblivion lockpicking refered to as the annoying lockpicking minigame. I thought one of the best bits about morrowind was the immersion it gave by avoiding all minigames and cut scenes (with the exception of starting and winning).


I don't think he meant that kind of minigame (at least I hope he didn't). Some kind of card/dice/whatever game that you could play with a selected few NPCs wouldn't we all that bad. Just a little something extra to do, mayhap as a way to gather up some gold if needed or just to test one's luck. A big no to another lockpicking minigame.
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Pisces
post Nov 15 2007, 02:31 AM
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I didn't mind the lockpicking game actually, and you could auto do it if I recall, or just cast a spell. Didn't like the speechcraft game 1 bit, too easy and basic. But year, I was meaning minigames like Rane mentioned, kinda like the ones in fable (coin golf was great). But there is really no difference between the change of combat from MW to OB and the change of lock picking between the games, both go from a stat based system to a stat skill mix, aside from the box popping up and the game pausing.

This post has been edited by Pisces: Nov 15 2007, 02:32 AM
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Olen
post Nov 15 2007, 04:04 PM
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Ok right I see what you mean. Yea they could be fun. The speechcraft game is so easy that the only use of the skill is to raise where you max out. The lockpicking game just breaks the flow of the game (which is more my objection though it was also annoying). It also doesn't work if you get any lag while doing it (my box doesn't like running oblivion one bit).

The difference with minigames like coin golf (which was quite fun) is that you can ignore them if you want so they never get the chance to bother you. I don't think the stat skill mix is any bad thing, so long as it doesn't render the stat pointless, but it is a very fine balance. I found the memory game in fable unbalanced things a bit, it was so easy that it provided as much money as you could ever need.

But it would be cool to be able to go to the pub and play cards or darts...


On an unrelated note what about needing to eat/sleep? I always find that I only slept to level up and never used food other than to train alchemy. Some sort of meter like the fatigue one that went down slowly but once it got quite low would start to affect your performance or something along those lines perhaps? I'm not sure if realism like that would just get annoying though.


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Channler
post Nov 15 2007, 09:35 PM
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QUOTE(Olen @ Nov 15 2007, 10:04 AM) *

Ok right I see what you mean. Yea they could be fun. The speechcraft game is so easy that the only use of the skill is to raise where you max out. The lockpicking game just breaks the flow of the game (which is more my objection though it was also annoying). It also doesn't work if you get any lag while doing it (my box doesn't like running oblivion one bit).

The difference with minigames like coin golf (which was quite fun) is that you can ignore them if you want so they never get the chance to bother you. I don't think the stat skill mix is any bad thing, so long as it doesn't render the stat pointless, but it is a very fine balance. I found the memory game in fable unbalanced things a bit, it was so easy that it provided as much money as you could ever need.

But it would be cool to be able to go to the pub and play cards or darts...


On an unrelated note what about needing to eat/sleep? I always find that I only slept to level up and never used food other than to train alchemy. Some sort of meter like the fatigue one that went down slowly but once it got quite low would start to affect your performance or something along those lines perhaps? I'm not sure if realism like that would just get annoying though.


Remember though.. You don't need to play the lock-picking mini game. Theres the auto button tongue.gif. If your like me you just by every single lock pick you can find and try to pick every lock possible.

My biggest problems in the game were..

Creature leveling and the emptiness of the world and fast travel.

First point. Its already been mentioned but I do agree that its ridiculous that monsters/creatures/guards are scaled to your level. To me it made the game no fun in the long run. Where in Morrowind I actually felt like a bad boat, in Oblivion I just kinda looked like one because of my armor.

Second point. Again this has already been hit upon but I feel that the world felt empty.. almost bland if you were. The locales changed a bit, but not by much. I sorta got a temperate coniferous forest idea around Chyd.. whatever.. its called and a highlands feel around the collovian highlands.. (duh) But that was about it. The locations need to be more expanded. I can go to North Carolina and see several different types of climates and geographical features, but its still a humid subtropical zone. The caves/ruins/forts felt more random and less relevant to the world then anything in morrowind. I mean, why are there so many abondoned legion forts in the main province of Cyrodil?! You'd think at least one would be operational. It just felt like the world was empty.. Not sure how to fix that.. more villages? I liked the little village of Hackdirt.. it was awesome, not even sure why. Now if they would of made the village a little important place for sidequests that would of been even better.

Lastly I think the fast travel idea was stupid.. It made it retarded for horses to really exist in the game, and it made the concept of exploring kind of foreign. Sure sometimes I didn't like running back and forth to places in morrowind, but I was never too far from a Stilt rider so that it really wasnt that large of a problem.

I'll write would I'd like to see in TESV later tongue.gif


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Steve
post Nov 15 2007, 11:00 PM
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Yea, I would like to see more small villages. The world did seem kind of empty of life. An occasional few animals but sometimes, you could travel with no life around you.

I would also like to see a quest where you can control a town or village. I mean, maybe that'd be kind of weird and maybe wouldn't fit but, they could make it fit somehow?
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Agent Griff
post Nov 19 2007, 08:02 PM
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The few animals that you did manage to see almost always had a manic death-wish and charged you on sight. Except the deer, everything in Oblivion has this odd berserker-like behaviour, from the smallest rat to the biggest Ogre. I would appreciate it if the animals in the next TES game were more realistic, and didn't make 'outdoor' characters who roamed a lot in the wild seem like they had a death wish.


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Jamie Charlton
post Dec 17 2007, 05:37 PM
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I'd like there to be a lot more depth in where you can live. like if you wanted to you could just go and live in a cave and buy a bedroll and a few other things to put in there while you're at it. and proper relationships with people because all you do is tell them a few jokes and they're eating out of the palm of your hand, and they never actually try to talk to you, they speak when they're spoken to. and an even bigger map (if that's possible to actually do considering how big it is already), because i find there's very little to do. and maybe if you met some guy on the road, you could trade with him. also, the idea of having to eat and sleep is good, because it's so unrealistic and it would be much better if your character was more life like, and say if he was going on a hike up the mountain, he would have to bring food with him. it would be cool too if you could freeze to death from the cold, cos when you go up into say, the Jeralls, you won't die even if you go up topless.
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Steve
post Dec 18 2007, 03:31 AM
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I actually barely eat. I think there should be something where it helps to eat. Maybe you lose health the longer you are from eating?
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Jessel
post Jan 2 2008, 09:24 AM
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I throw in my two cents to this.

-Being able to break things around you, break into places by axing the door down etc.

-I hated the fact that I was always as strong as everything else, I would have loved to be way stronger and way weaker than others.

-I just hit a man in the head with a sword...he's still coming at me.

-MORE ARMOR AND WEAPON SETS. Let's face it, this game can be easily played through and you can level up and get all the stuff if you know what to do. It would be nice for some of us hardcore players (the only players this game has? haha) if after 200 hours we were still finding new things, although I do understand that they have tried to give us new things with Shivering Isles and Knights of the Nine.

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Gaius Maximus
post Jan 2 2008, 05:53 PM
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In another forum, I was responding to the issue of Speechcraft and mercantile being useless in game, and I think it would be quite nice if these things got included into TES V (highly unlikely).

QUOTE
There should be an economy. This would make living as a merchant much more profitable than a dungeon looter, most likely. It could be somewhat like this - in Anvil, say, silk is cheaper than anywhere else, because there's more of it comming, from other provinces and such. However, in Cheydinhal there's a need for silk. So, if you bouth silk at Anvil and sold it off at Cheydinhal for a higher price - you've got profit. Plus, there should be the options to buy exotic materials through the means of caravans - like, there would be caravans going from Cheydinhal to Morrowind every three months. You could add your own goods to trade, and either order them to be bartered into other stuff which cannot be found in Cyrodiil, or sold. Obviously, you could buy things also.

Eventually, it could maybe be possible to build a ship for yourself, and tax the other merchants who wanted to deliver goods with it, also deliver your own goods (of course, you'd have to pay taxes yourself, as well as payig the crew and the captain, too). Eventually, it could all turn into a large, well-oiled trading empire that brought hundreds of thousands of Septims, also making you a very famous person!

On the other hand, smuggling could be an option too. It would be really risky, though maybe more profitable. Also, whereas honest trading would make you famous, smuggling would probably obviously make you infamous.

Also, maybe it would be possible to open up an inn, which would require both speechcraft (to attract customers and workers) and mercantile (obviously to do business).

Also, to make speechcraft skill better, maybe there should be the option to get into the court of one of the cities, and make your way up to becoming a diplomat, or maybe a herald of the Count of that city. You would be sent with messages, also with secret tasks such as to bribe people in the court of a rival city, which would require high speechcraft.


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It's very important to know what to say. For example, one time I was staying at a hotel, and a dog in the room next to mine started barking at 5 AM... I walked out, opened my mouth, and realized I didn't know what to say. So I just proclaimed 'I've killed before!'
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Steve
post Jan 2 2008, 08:13 PM
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I actually tried making a merchant character!
I thought that if you got to 100 mercantile you could buy stock in a store and every week you could get some of their profit. I was mistaken...

Hours of stealing for nothing...

I would like to see more quests where you could kind of make your own quest? You know, like in the Dark Brotherhood, you give the names of people to murder, I would kind of like to do that more often but, a little more in deapth!
I would love to be Arch Mage and command Battlemage legions to go attack a city! That would be great!

This post has been edited by Steve: Jan 2 2008, 08:14 PM
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canis216
post Jan 3 2008, 03:26 AM
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QUOTE(Agent Griff @ Nov 19 2007, 12:02 PM) *

The few animals that you did manage to see almost always had a manic death-wish and charged you on sight. Except the deer, everything in Oblivion has this odd berserker-like behaviour, from the smallest rat to the biggest Ogre. I would appreciate it if the animals in the next TES game were more realistic, and didn't make 'outdoor' characters who roamed a lot in the wild seem like they had a death wish.


Perhaps wolves should hunt deer instead of humans... maybe certain wildlife should only be hostile if you get too close--and should avoid allowing you to get so close. It always pains me to kill a wolf in Oblivion (see my avatar), but I'm often left no choice in the matter, even though I try to avoid and sneak around them. I could see goblins and ogres and trolls being aggressive and hostile, and I could see other wildlife as hostile if encountered in caves (their homes, which they'd try to defend). Something approximating normal, evolutionarily sensible behavior. An ogre might reasonably think it could beat down that adventurer. A mud crab... couldn't beat up the weakest beggar.


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- Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 6th June 2020 - 12:22 AM