"Guest" Blog

  07:03:45 pm, by Cactus   , 749 words  
Viewed 6173 times since 17/11/09
Categories: Games, Elder Scrolls

As the self-proclaimed "UESP Forum Representative, I've decided to be presumptuous and ask a few (read: one) others to slip me the occasional post to publish here. This is my first such post, by r.

After much deliberation, I have finally worked out what it is I don't like about Oblivion. I was introduced to the fine world of Elder Scrolls via Morrowind and bought Oblivion when it came out. I quite liked it, despite the fact that I was playing it on a computer with a 1Hz processor so I had to have all the graphics turned right down and the framerate still plummeted whenever anything interesting was happening. There was something I wasn't sure about, though.

It wasn't the graphics, because I now own the game on PS3, which is hooked up to a 42-inch HD TV and I still don't like it. It's not the way it's been dumbed down - all types of blade are now one category, polearms and medium armour are gone, axes are classed as blunt weapons for some reason and you can't wear a robe, clothes and armour all at the same time. It's not the fact that all the Elves, including the Dunmer, sound like they're from Surrey. No, it's how every single thing in the game is relentlessly and boringly levelled.

In Morrowind, if you knew where to look you could get anything you wanted. For a level 1 character, going into one of the Sixth House Citadels to get a Daedric weapon you're after is probably a bit out of the question, but the point is it's there. Glass, ebony and Daedric weapons are supposed to be rare, bespoke, handcrafted items so it's right that there's only so many of them around, and the people who have them are either going to keep them well-hidden or put up a fight to keep hold of them. You can tell Dram Bero about a cave and get a Daedric weapon of your choice at any point in the game, but do this at level 1 in Cyrodiil and say hello to your nice new iron war axe.

It's fun walking around Morrowind with a Daedric Claymore when your only foes are rats and Scribs. It's not fun firing arrow after arrow into a wolf with an enchanted ebony longbow until it finally dies after 50 hits. Why does this happen? When I was little, I trod on a bee and killed it and its friend stung me, which quite hurt. Fifteen years on, if I trod on a bee I would still kill it, not make a tiny dent in it, and another bee stinging me would quite hurt, not kill me. I haven't noticed the seagulls in Brighton slowly turning into invincible albatrosses while I've been living here.

Going back to rare weapons, why do all NPCs have them as you get higher up the level board? Why would a highwayman need to relieve you of 100 Septims when he could hock his ebony warhammer for 20 times that amount? And how the hell did he come into possession of one in the first place? Certainly not by standing on a bridge in an ever-evolving suit of armour every day. Bandits attack you with Daedric weapons whilst wearing glass armour. Daedric weapons are meant to be the rarest of the rare, so why does every member of a huge bandit den have one? Think about this - it's like yobs racing around a council estate in a Lamborghini, and when you were born, Bill Gates was driving a Volkswagen diesel just like everyone else.

Whilst this never means you'll be substantially weaker than any enemy you face, it also means you'll never be substantially stronger than them. How many of you have given up on travelling by road after getting sick of fighting off 10 bears on the road between two towns, firing arrow after arrow into their faces to no effect? On my current game, my level 20 character, who should be a demi-superhuman, has resorted to turning the difficulty right down for the last bits of the main quest because I'm so sick of Storm Atronachs killing her with 3 punches.

And what's up with levelled quest rewards? "You can have this amulet now, but if you'd told me about your impressive feat of derring-do next year sometime it would have been a lot better".

And it's this reason, the fact that the world constantly changes to adapt to you, why I don't like Oblivion.

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This is the Cactus speaking..

  02:18:45 pm, by Cactus   , 437 words  
Viewed 66916 times since 05/11/09
Categories: Welcome, Games, Elder Scrolls, Hobbies, UESP

My name is Ricky and I'm a Moderator over on the UESP Forums. I just thought I'd bring a touch of the forum life over here to the blog. I'm not even sure what that means, but it sounded good in my head when I signed up for this.

Oh, an introduction? Is that what you want?
Le'see, I'm called Cactus on about 90% of the internet and surprisingly by several people in the real world, too. I've been a member of both the wiki and the forums since September 2007. I'll admit I'm not much of an editor on the wiki, more of a reader, but I've fixed my share of typos. I've been a Mod since late 2008.

My interests, aside from video games, lie in writing and music. I've been writing since I was about 14 and I've finally gotten good enough I don't hate everything I write. I'm still too lazy though. I've been playing drums since 2004 or 2005. Until recently I was in a band called Optical Delusion. We released a single album in 2007.

I'm recently (and voluntarily) unemployed in preparation for a rather significant change in my life--I'm moving to Germany to continue my education and hopefully end up as an architect.

I love jumping on bandwagons and looking cool by mimicking others, so I'll share the games I've been playing recently since everyone else did. &#59;)

  • Oblivion:
    This is a rather recent addition to my "current" games. I was obsessed with it for over a year and it finally got old. A new Argonian assassin has rekindled my love for this beautiful game.
  • Fallout 3:
    This is an obsession that won't die. I've played through it so many times and just as the fire was going out, the DLC came out and I've been loving it all over again.
  • Spore:
    This is a really great game, I think. It really supports creativity. If you don't have it, get it. The expansions add quite a bit to the game, as well.
  • Sims 3:
    I could practically write a post on this game and the series in general. I've been absolutely obsessed with Sims games since I played SimCity 2000 on my first computer back in 1998. Since then I've played SimCity 3000, SimTower, SimCopter, Streets of SimCity, SimSafari, Sims (and all expansions), Sims 2 (and all expansions) and probably some others I've forgotten. It's like they've somehow taken drug addition and packaged it as a computer game. Truth be told I'm probably a bit more passionate, though less obsessed, with this series than Elder Scrolls.
  • Morrowind (Deutsch Version:
    In preparation for my move I've been playing this in German. It's.. not easy.


  12:59:18 pm, by Ratwar   , 162 words  
Viewed 5131 times since 10/26/09
Categories: Welcome, Elder Scrolls, UESP

Well, I would introduce myself, but I did that just last week over here...

Anyways, the UESP got a mention in the most recent edition of Game Informer (Issue #199) in an article called 'Lore Masters' that featured an interview with Kurt Kuhlmann, a developer over at Bethesda. When discussing The Infernal City Kuhlmann said the following:

"Bethesda also pointed Keyes toward well-organized fan sites like The Imperial Library and UESP.The author then had to submit a series of treatments for the company to page through before it settled on a story about a mysterious floating city...."

For me it is a really cool acknowledgment. I mean, the UESP is almost a shrine to the Elder Scrolls games, and to have the creators of those games tell other people we're a good source for information is one of the highest honors we could get.

Of course, calling us well organized might be a bit of a stretch, but hey, I'll take it.

What I'm playing...

  12:11:02 pm, by Elliot   , 248 words  
Viewed 3892 times since 10/21/09
Categories: Games, Elder Scrolls

In light of my recent birthday, I have attained a PS3. So here is what I am currently playing:

  • Fallout 3: I managed to get my hands on the Game of the Year edition that came out on the thirteenth. Although, I haven't started any of the DLCs yet. I have read in places that the DLC on the PS3 does not work, so here's to hoping! Oh, and this game is just simply amazing, if you haven't bought/played it.
  • Oblivion: Do I really have to explain this one? :D It's nice to finally return to Cyrodiil and talk about mudcrabs!
  • Assassin's Creed: I was a little thrown off when it I found out the game is set on the premise of reliving the ancestors life... it seems really... Matrix-y to me. I have enjoyed what I have played so far, so I hope it keeps going well.
  • Grand Theft Auto IV: This is easily one of my all-time favorite games. It is a masterpiece that builds on the shortcomings of the games before it (I don't care what you say, San Andreas sucked). And plus, I can spend hours just driving around... Liberty City (aka New York). This game just makes me smile (although the fighting could be a little bit better).

I plan on getting more games soon. Ones that I have my eye on are the Uncharted Series and Assassin's Creed II. Any good games that are PS3-platform specific that I should look into?

What I'm Playing....

  10:08:04 am, by Daveh   , 205 words  
Viewed 2663 times since 10/20/09
Categories: Games

To try and keep up with Bethesda's latest What We're Playing here's a short list of what I've been entertaining myself with lately:

  • Wolfenstein -- I picked this up shortly after my last playing list and finished it last week. A fun enough game well worth my money but the reviews of the game I've read pretty much nailed the good and bad of the game. Its a decent FPS with a twist (veil "magic") and some great boss fights but I think it tried to take itself too seriously and force the plot onto you by overly long and complex cut scenes. A simpler and less serious "you're a hero, kill Nazis" plot would have worked just as well, like in the very original.

Ok, a *really* short list but I tend to focus on one game at a time, particularily when it involves having to swap DVDs. I'm not sure how all those folks at Bethesda have time to play all those games. I suppose it helps when you're working in the gaming industry so playing games can be considered "research". If only I could figure a way of convincing people at work that playing Oblivion is somehow relevant to electromagnetic non-destructive testing.