Classic RPG players, wait no longer! The arrival of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion takes us back to the way role-playing games should be played. The game provides players with many character attributes, tools, weapons, tricks, and quests to choose from. Also, the world map is the most expansive I’ve seen in a long time. As the hours turn to days, gamers will come to appreciate traditional RPG gameplay.
The first half hour of the game can easily be spent customizing your character. Gender, race, and physical attributes are all customizable. I spent at least five minutes choosing a hair style for my Elf.
Your character begins the game in a jail cell. Soon, the Emperor of Tamriel appears and it’s your job to help him escape from his assassins through the castle while listening as he predicts the events of his own death. Evil critters including corpses (shudder) attempt to block your way. After realizing that the Emperor’s predictions were correct, your quest is to deliver an amulet to his illegitimate son that no one knew he had. But hey, the plot here is uninteresting and ultimately not important.
The beginning of the game also serves as a tutorial. However, the tutorial is not complete and many of the controls must be discovered during gameplay. I’ve heard rumors that the Xbox 360 controller is more suited to the game than a keyboard and mouse…
Having escaped from the castle, you are thrown into the world of Tamriel with your first quest. A small red diamond on the compass indicates the direction in which the quest lies. Those expecting a rather linear plotline be warned: it is entirely possible to have several quests on the backburner at once. However, your menu does a good job of tracking them, and priority can be placed on any of them at any time.