Funny, I just started playing Morrowind yesterday. Frankly its a wonderful game, but on the XBox the graphics are nothing to be impressed about. I assume that Oblivion for the 360 would be much better.
Otherwise, I'm loving Morrowind. Its annoying because most of the houses and people around town are just for show and don't really add much to the game. But its really exciting to go out at night and pillage the countryside. I'm becoming a bit of a kelpto. B-)
Oblivion was the first Elder Scrolls game I actually finished (the main plot, that is). It has its flaws, and it's far from a classic, but it was fun to play.
The lack of an auto-travel system alone makes Morrowind immensely boring for me. It takes ages to reach a dungeon or the next town. The crappy quest journal doesn't help much, either.
Which of the Elder Scrolls are considered the best by the fans anyways? I've only played 2 games from the series, so...
Daggerfall is considered to be the best and greatest Elder Scrolls game ever. Haven`t played it, so can`t tell if it`s really true.
So far as I can tell fans really hate the later games for small gimmicky reasons... like Oblivion is a bad game because it has a compass or whatever.
Personally I liked Oblivion more than Morrowind.
Rabbi Guru Wrote:
LOL, how typical!
I hate fans.
YID YANG Wrote:
Good thing nobody mentioned Final Fantasy then, eh? =) Sorry Oleg, I had to play the troll... ;)
But I'm not one of those fans who complain about every little change made within the franchise... I even referred to that when discussing FFXII. I'm not a "fan" as in "keep everything the way it was in the first game, otherwise we'll hate you and your new game!".
IMHO, being a true fan means first of all understanding the creators' new ideas, having tolerance to them, instead of complaining all the time.
I really can't stand those typical "fan" reviews: "I"ve been a long-time fan of franchise X. I've played every single game in the series. I completed all of them with all the 23497 hidden magic golden ears collected. And with installment Y, they ruined it. You really can't imagine what they did. No, I'm almost ashamed to type it. They removed the possibility to equip the super-mythril-genji armor on both rogues and half-tiefling paladins. Yes, you heard right. Now, I ask you, how could they have done such a thing?! This just proved they have no respect for fans. Damn you, company Z! You've really destroyed my world!".
I'm an Elder Scrolls fan, have played all the games, but none for longer than a few hours. Sounds incredibly stupid and probably is, but you'd have to know my weird ways to understand. (Another example: I have a collection of about 150 movies on DVD, about half of which I have never seen).
Personally, I consider Morrowind my favourite, then Daggerfall, Arena and Oblivion. Not meaning I don't like Oblivion, I still consider it one of my favourite games.
One of the reasons is the size. You probably won't understand this either, but everyone seems to like the fact that Oblivion had a smaller but more vivid, active, busy world. But the kind of epic vastness of the older games is something I actually quite liked. It might make you travel a lot, but it gives a better impression of a real world for you to explore, in contrast to just a big game level to wander around in. Remember the almost endless surface world of Arena?
Then again, my list of descending preference is about the same as the descending list of hours I played each game, so maybe I would change my mind if I actually played the things for once.
Rabbi Guru Wrote:
Uh, no. Let me put it down here for you: The Elder Scrolls: Arena was pretty much as a first-person rogue-like. I haven't really played it past the starting dungeon, so I can't say much about it.
With Daggerfall they expanded on Arena - there were huge randomized dungeons, randomized quests, randomized NPCs, a non-linear main-quest, you needed to actually work your way up in guild hierarchies since time had meaning (you lost standing if you didn't do quests for them), and quest objectives wouldn't stand there waiting for you for years. It had problems with bugs and loads of planned features didn't make it into the game.
With Morrowind, instead of building on and improving Daggerfall they threw all that stuff out the door, created a completely hand-made world, static and linear quests and questlines, made the passing of time meaningless, removed lots of skills, the gameworld was a tiny fraction of Daggerfall's, f the dungeons of Daggerfall were much too large and maze-like then the dungeons of Morrowind were much too small and railroaded, they removed the dialog system and replaced it with an encyclopedia, tried a new much worse combat system (probably to make it work with the Xbox control) and so on. On the positive side, they managed to make the gameworld quite believable, with politicking, power struggles, a bit of racism, a lot of new lore and such. Quest objectives were more varied, sometimes with their own little stories, and I would put their traveling system here. Instead of the "click on map"-system of previous and later installments you went either to a harbor, silt-strider or mage guild and paid for travel (or the mark and recall spells). Anyway, since they completely changed the core design I believe they lost quite a few of the old Elder Scrolls fans, but that didn't matter so much since they managed to create a whole new fanbase, partly on the Xbox.
With Oblivion they reduced the amount of skills even more, introduced full voice acting with too few voice actors, kept the same sort of dialog system as in Morrowind, but they only gave you a few topics, so you couldn't learn from NPCs about the gameworld. The gameworld itself was generic high fantasy, with almost no new lore and books (in fact, old lore says Cyrodiil should be tropical - its new role is that of farmland, yet the gameworld isn't even believably farmed). Full level scaling was introduced meaning you could do any and everything at level 1 which removed all feeling of progress, and all skill/attribute requirements were removed from factions, so you don't even need to be good at melee combat to rise in the fighters guild. Due to the level scaling, the hundreds of dungeons were all boring and pointless as well, since the equipment you find is also completely level scaled - in Morrowind you could find some really neat items simply by exploring. The gameworld is about as small as Morrowind, yet the Daggerfall kind of fast-travel was introduced, they don't even pretend to use the rivers for trade or transportation. The quest compass that reveals any and everything of interest in the vicinity destroyed any feeling of exploration (and no, disabling it with an interface mod is not an option, since you don't get a description of where to go from quest givers). Any last bit of choice and consequence existing in Morrowind (you could only join one of the great houses, for example) was also thrown out the window in Oblivion where nothing you do has any consequence - so it's is even more linear. You can't even say no to accepting quests! Oh, and a list of complaints wouldn't be complete without "Radiant AI" from the previews - guess what? The AI of the previews is not in the game, and all NPC routines are scripted like in so many other games, not "needs based". Among the good points is that combat has been improved over Morrowind's and the quests have even more "personality" and quirks. From what I understand, they lost quite a few Morrowind fans who were disappointed with Oblivion. I suppose I could be said to be one of them (Morrowind was my first TES game).
So to answer the OP's question, I prefer Morrowind to Oblivion's blandness.
The Quest Journal is much improved if you happen to own one of the two expansion packs. Among the updates it provides is better quest and keyword indexing in the journal. Should be part of the main game, I agree... but at least it's fixable.
As for auto-travel, if you really need it... there are various mods (PC) that allow this to be done. Some work simply by creating "routes" between the different transportation types to get to all major destinations. Others work by providing the player to use multiple mark/recall spells, or by providing new items that teleport to known destinations.
Of course, if I had any modding abilitity myself... I would have made an underground Dwemer subway system (activated by quest) that would allow the player to quickly traverse the island.
Oh by the way: Morrowind's total land area: 6 square miles. Surely you can handle that.
Mine is Morrowind.
Actually, this is a very good topic, since the history of the elder scrolls series goes parallel to that of CRPGs in the last 15 years or so. I don't think you have treated fairly the fanboys of Daggerfall, because the change to Morrowind was very traumatic. From a England wide map with seemingly endless possibilities to a map 20-30 times smaller and some more limitations. I don't care, I'm not old-school CRPG gamer (I'm half-old-school gamer, you could say) and I understand that Morrowind was done like that to add detail to a portion of the map of Daggerfall. Specifically, you wont even find two equal trees in the whole Morrowind or two NPCs that look the same and the history, society, politics, arts and so on where done to a detail level imposible for the philosophy of the game industry today.
Either way, the changes from Daggerfall to Morrowind was the revelation of something more serious than the impossibility to make the map of the old Daggerfall with the new graphics' standards. It revealed the decline of the CRPG concept in the industry and that consoles were making the PC games's standards lower. And is even more obvious with Oblivion, a game that is all graphics and has half the gameplay possibilities of Morrowind cut. Actually Oblivion is so painfully small, that the map, which looks like four times smaller than that of Morrowind, depicts a region two times bigger. Even the story of Oblivion, (SPOILERS) which is the epic story that closes one era of Tamriel's story, looks plain stupid when you see the final battle between good and evil carried by a good army of less than 10 soldiers!! (END OF SPOILERS).
In short, Morrowind is better, in my opinion, because it gives way more possibilities than Oblivion with a very good graphics and settings design for the time, while Oblivion just feels too small for gamers with some background (PC mostly) in adventure/RPG games.
However it doesn't matter much, since Bethesda has always been known as a developer who has no habit of looking around occasionally. So they always had to invent things, invented long before them. Which is good, because in the end you can't confuse the Elder Scrolls game with any other, and bad, because while working on Morrowind Bethesda missed a minor detail, the triumphant revival of the cRPG in the form of games by Black Isle and BioWare.
As for the one being better I have to go with Morrowind also. The setting in Morrowind is so unique, so you always feel like exploring the unknown, while Oblivion feels like a pumped up version of your neighborhood. And the lore of the Morrowind is absolutely overwhelming, "Lessons of Vivek" is a good and entertaining read regardless of the game itself. But Oblivion features the most interesting and unusual side quests of the recent time even rivaling those of the Bloodlines. And of course that dumb level-scaling system is just another perfect example that Bethsoft still thinks of Gothic as of a medieval art style.
Still, both games are very good and entertaining. It's just not very clear where Bethesda is going with their game philosophy. I think they're stumbling in the dark themselves. Let's see what they will come up with in FALL 2008.
St. Martyne Wrote:
Tim Cain, 2002: My idea is explore more of the world and more of the ethics of a postnuclear world, not to make a better plasma gun.
Todd Howard, 2007: Hey, violence is funny – lets all just own up to it! Violence done well is f---ing hilarious. It’s like Itchy and Scratchy or Jackass – now that’s funny!
I´d say FALL 2008 will see Duke Nukem 3D meets Fallout 2 New Reno, with Liam Neeson playing a fatherly guy.
Rabbi Guru Wrote:
Glad, there's still Fallout in there, somewhere. :) Although, seriously, you're oversimplifying things a bit. From what I've read and heard I am pretty positive that Bethesda is trying to deliver a quality Fallout experience. Just not sure, if they're up to the task.
As for violence Fallouts were no kiddy games. You could actually see the ribs of your enemies crushing into dust during occasional critical shots. And that's from an isometric perspective! I ain't so certain they have the guts to recreate that in first-person.
(Edited by Rabbi Guru (1250), Jul 19, 2007)Re: Morrowind vs. Oblivion
Rabbi Guru (1250), Jul 19, 2007
Not the violence quote itself but Todd Howard himself is the one that makes me doubt in Fallout 3. Just reading some of the previews and interviews made me.... never mind.
There's more to Fallout than just immature humour, but it seems that Bethesda is making that immature humour a priority and reading that part when Todd used a Mini-Nuke on some Super-Mutant-Boss guy makes me think of Duke Nukem 3D.
Well, for what it's worth, Bethesda has always done a decent job of maintaining the seriousness of tone in its games. Maybe even too decent. And not necessarily the mini-Nuke weapon, Todd was referring to, should look like this. Heck, nobody even said that it would stick from a lower-right corner like some kind of a handgun.
Me, personally, thinks that having the high-tech portable nuclear weapon in a Fallout game is an awesome idea. And considering the level of technology nowadays, the result has many chances to look credible.
Really, it saddens me to see how negative was the response Bethesda received from a Fallout fan base years before an actual game release. It's not a proper way to support a developer. So if this kind of an attitude will keep up, Bethesda will have nothing to do than to stop listening to the fans' incoherent ramblings at all. And after that they will get their oh-so-much-despised "Oblivion with guns". Isn't it clear that Bethesda is not making a Fallout because of money? The only reasonable thing for them to do was to get on with the TESV, not to take the rotten body of the failed franchise from the grave. But they do love the Fallouts, and they do want to make F3 worthy of its predecessors. Of that I am sure. But will they be able to do it, only time will tell.
Sorry, Irishman and Bob (read your reviews, nice stuff!), it certainly has nothing to do with you two. It's just that recently I've read some Beth forums and really couldn't keep my mouth shut.
St. Martyne Wrote:
Which ones? I hope Warrior Within was one of them cause it's the only one I'm happy with (so happy, that sometimes I consider all the rest crap).
Anyway somehow you managed to soften my heart for Bethesda. Damn, I always get affected by sincerity. Must be cynical...doesn't...work...
(Edited by St. Martyne (3562), Jul 26, 2007)Re: Morrowind vs. Oblivion
St. Martyne (3562), Jul 26, 2007
All of them. :-) Well I didn't read Shin Megami Tensei II review very attentively because I didn't play it. Still, I played the first one, so I pretty much understand what the fuzz was all about.
As for the one which I liked the most. It must be the FFVII review. I agree with everything you said there. I had the same personality disorder while playing it. One part of me hated all the random battles, stupid cute characters speaking with dots (....), nonexistent RPG part, while the other was blown away by the sincerity of everything going on my monitor (played the PC version but with the gamepad, so no harm was done)