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October 8th, 2013, 10:18
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
It's ok for casual/mainstream gamers who don't know what they're missing with level-scaling. I'd argue that's actually most people - or at least half of the audience for Oblivion and Skyrim. Otherwise, Bethesda wouldn't bother putting it in all of their games - not to mention Bioware and all those other major developers.
Level scaling in general yes, but not level scaling to the degree that Oblivion had it. Bethesda hasn't catered to enthusiasts for a long time, so the negative feedback they received must have been a significant amount. Otherwise they wouldn't have toned it down so much in their later games.
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October 8th, 2013, 10:26
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
Level scaling in general yes, but not level scaling to the degree that Oblivion had it. Bethesda hasn't catered to enthusiasts for a long time, so the negative feedback they received must have been a significant amount. Otherwise they wouldn't have toned it down so much in their later games.
They've toned it back, sure, but it's still pretty excessive. I'm certainly not at all happy with it in Fallout 3 or Skyrim. If you don't mod those games - they're a total pushover even on the hardest difficulty modes - and you basically never run into a serious challenge, because you can just drink potions indefinitely. It's stupid.

I don't think they're all that different from Oblivion in terms of challenge or the sense of progression. I think what they wanted to address was seeing bandits in Glass armor all over the place - because that was completely ridiculous in Oblivion, no matter how casual you are.

I honestly don't think most casual/mainstream gamers had a problem with Oblivion because of level-scaling.

If you do - then we just differ on that.
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October 8th, 2013, 10:35
I think the later games are significantly different than Oblivion in terms of level-scaling, and Bethesda even made that a selling point during the pre-hype for Fallout 3. So yeah, they definitely toned it down quite a bit. I do agree that it's still excessive, but not that it's the reason FO3 was so easy.

I can only speculate what casual/mainstream gamers thought about the level scaling in Oblivion. What I do know though is that Bethesda is a company that bases their decisions on what they think the majority wants.
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October 8th, 2013, 10:54
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I think the later games are significantly different than Oblivion in terms of level-scaling, and Bethesda even made that a selling point during the pre-hype for Fallout 3. So yeah, they definitely toned it down quite a bit. I do agree that it's still excessive, but not that it's the reason FO3 was so easy.

I can only speculate what casual/mainstream gamers thought about the level scaling in Oblivion. What I do know though is that Bethesda is a company that bases their decisions on what they think the majority wants.
Significantly different? Well, maybe in technical terms - but it's still a joke when it comes to actual challenge.

Well, part of the reason the games are so easy - is that you're not going to encounter mobs that you can't defeat when you go off exploring. Maybe it's possible in Skyrim and Fallout 3 - but it's extremely rare from my experience with the vanilla versions. I don't think I encountered a SINGLE challenge throughout Fallout 3 - and I was playing on Expert or Master. In Skyrim - I believe the first dragon was kinda hard - but not really. They're scaled as well, IIRC.

That's really so different to you? Ok then.

In any case - we can agree that the games are very easy - and that's because of the mainstream/casual audience as well.

I don't think Bethesda base their decisions on what the majority wants - but they certainly do take that into consideration when trying to market and sell what's arguably a pretty non-casual RPG.

I think they're trying to make the best game they can within the limitations of the publisher model - and that means they have to take into account all kinds of gamers.

Why they toned down level-scaling is hard to say - but IIRC they received a LOT of criticism because of the bandit in high-end gear situation. Also, they probably tried to find some middle-ground - but the end result is still a level of challenge that's not at all what we enthusiast fans would want.

I assume most of us around here would prefer something like Gothic?

Essentially, the level-scaling of TES games is not for us - but that doesn't mean it's not OK for the larger audience. Again, Oblivion was a smash with the console/mainstream audience - and the level-scaling hardly worked against that.
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October 8th, 2013, 11:45
Level scaling wasn't the sole reason why Fallout 3 was so easy though. The vanilla game was a joke in terms of difficulty because of how quickly and easily you could raise your stats and because of the overabundance of powerful weapons. It was a combination of factors, and scaling certainly added to that problem.

The purpose of level scaling is to supposedly make the challenge level more even throughout the game, not to make it easier. I say "supposedly" because it obviously doesn't work very well. You don't encounter enemies that can kill you with a single blow, but you also don't encounter weak enemies as you grow in level.

To me though, there was still a big difference between the type of scaling they used in Oblivion compared to the type they used in FO3. If I have to deal with level scaling, then I'd much rather see the kind that replaces enemies with a different type as you level, rather than simply giving you the same enemy with more hitpoints and different gear like in Oblivion.

Yeah, Oblivion was a smash with the console audience, and later games were an even bigger smash. I'm not claiming that's because of the difference in level-scaling, but the fact remains that it was changed and for a reason.

I think we pretty much agree about the concept in general though. I strongly dislike it as well. I have to say though that I find loot scaling far more egregious than enemy scaling, and I wish that they would do away with that completely in favor of hand-placed loot.
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October 8th, 2013, 11:52
On that we can definitely agree.

I want hand-placed everything, basically - but I also want huge freeform exploration, so I'm ok with some concessions because I know it's all but impossible to hand-place encounters and loot in a game the size of Skyrim, and especially if you're going to have meaningful loot for all classes.

Which is where the modding community can be helpful
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October 8th, 2013, 12:56
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I don't know how anyone could try to claim that the degree of level-scaling in Oblivion was ok. It obviously wasn't for most people, and that's why we haven't seen it since. Vanilla Oblivion was, imo, the worst of the main TES games by far.
I don't know why people repeat such unreflected hivemind BS either, but hey, plz tell me how Oblivion was worse than Arena, Daggerfall and Morrowind

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October 8th, 2013, 13:11
Originally Posted by Sacred_Path View Post
I don't know why people repeat such unreflected hivemind BS either, but hey, plz tell me how Oblivion was worse than Arena, Daggerfall and Morrowind
Such a well thought-out and intellectual response…
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October 8th, 2013, 13:13
News flash:

People like different things for different reasons. You can't be right or wrong about what game is better or worse - except in the most subjective sense.
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October 8th, 2013, 13:17
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
News flash:

People like different things for different reasons. You can't be right or wrong about what game is better or worse - except in the most subjective sense.
Which doesn't have to stop anyone from making an argument for or against a certain game. I've had more fun with Oblivion so far than any other TES game (yes I played Skyrim before I played Oblivion) so I'm interested in substantial criticism other than o noes level-scaling

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October 8th, 2013, 13:25
Originally Posted by Sacred_Path View Post
Which doesn't have to stop anyone from making an argument for or against a certain game. I've had more fun with Oblivion so far than any other TES game (yes I played Skyrim before I played Oblivion) so I'm interested in substantial criticism other than o noes level-scaling
Why would you need substantial criticism? Are you expecting to have your own fun removed from the past with Oblivion?

You had more fun with Oblivion - and that's great. I hope you're not arrogant enough to think that because you had more fun - others can't have had more fun with the other games.

If you're genuinely interested in why people prefer one over the other - the first step is to realise that calling their opinions hivemind BS is not very productive.

So, if you can present your question in a mature manner and demonstrate an open mind - I'll gladly tell you why I prefer Skyrim to Oblivion. But it doesn't take much research to find people who agree with me - with a lot of details.

For instance, you could check out metacritic.com - and read some user reviews. You won't run out of reading material any time soon.
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October 8th, 2013, 13:33
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Why would you need substantial criticism? Are you expecting to have your own fun removed from the past with Oblivion?
No, but there could be some things I'm overlooking. I haven't finished the game yet, so maybe there are some aspects that are simply escaping me.

You had more fun with Oblivion - and that's great. I hope you're not arrogant enough to think that because you had more fun - others can't have had more fun with the other games.
Nop, it just seems that the hivemind has decided Oblivion is worse than other TES games, which is actually the reason I haven't played it before. I actually read a few times that Oblivion isn't worth buying except for Nehrim, which I don't find to be true at all.

So, if you can present your question in a mature manner and demonstrate an open mind - I'll gladly tell you why I prefer Skyrim to Oblivion. But it doesn't take much research to find people who agree with me - with a lot of details.
Why do you prefer Skyrim over Oblivion? [/mature] [and yes you can find all kinds of opinions on anything imaginable on the net ]

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October 8th, 2013, 13:46
"Hivemind" obviously refers to when the majority doesn't agree with him.
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October 8th, 2013, 14:07
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
"Hivemind" obviously refers to when the majority doesn't agree with him.
The things I've read repeatedly against Oblivion are:

- level scaling

- console influences, like the dialogue mini-game

- fewer skills

IOW, simplifcation/ greater accessibility and consolification. I don't think anyone would disagree that there is a certain portion of players out there who tend to take offense at anything that smells of these things. I also expect this portion to be more vocal and outspoken than those people who don't mind these things or are actually targeted by them.

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October 8th, 2013, 14:26
Originally Posted by Sacred_Path View Post
No, but there could be some things I'm overlooking. I haven't finished the game yet, so maybe there are some aspects that are simply escaping me.
Either that - or people like different things for different reasons.

Nop, it just seems that the hivemind has decided Oblivion is worse than other TES games, which is actually the reason I haven't played it before. I actually read a few times that Oblivion isn't worth buying except for Nehrim, which I don't find to be true at all.
Word to the wise: Don't let other people tell you what to do.

In any case, just because most of us here prefer Skyrim or Morrowind - doesn't mean we think Oblivion isn't worth playing or checking out.

I had a great time with Oblivion - especially up until I realised how generic and broken it was. But I loved the immersion and especially the Dark Brotherhood questline.

I prefer Oblivion over Morrowind, for instance.

Why do you prefer Skyrim over Oblivion? [/mature] [and yes you can find all kinds of opinions on anything imaginable on the net ]
Some reasons:

1. Far better mechanics - as in I love the perks and the more advanced stealth system.

2. Far more variety in terms of exploration. Almost every single dungeon you enter will have a little story of its own, either through some diary, a few letters - some unique scenery and tales told through the environment.

3. Far better story presentation - as in you don't get stilted NPC dialogue in a paused-game state and there's a lot more voice actors, meaning the deja vu feeling is less of a problem.

4. FAR better technically. Much improved streaming technology, more detail in the environments, better animations, better combat feedback, and so on.

5. Dual wielding, crafting and mounted combat.

6. I love some of the music - and never found Oblivion music to work that well.

7. I love the dragons.

8. I love that some dungeons have interesting puzzles, even if most of them are way too easy.

9. I like the writing better, especially most of the NPC dialogue is more mature and less weird.

10. The Dragon Shout powers are cool toys.
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October 8th, 2013, 14:26
Originally Posted by Sacred_Path View Post
The things I've read repeatedly against Oblivion are:

- level scaling

- console influences, like the dialogue mini-game

- fewer skills

IOW, simplifcation/ greater accessibility and consolification. I don't think anyone would disagree that there is a certain portion of players out there who tend to take offense at anything that smells of these things. I also expect this portion to be more vocal and outspoken than those people who don't mind these things or are actually targeted by them.
All of which are legitimate reasons for many gamers to have a lower opinion of Oblivion. Not sure what's so hard to understand about that. It obviously doesn't apply to everyone nor is anyone claiming it does.

I've never seen anyone claim that Oblivion is only worth buying for Nehrim though, and I don't share that opinion. I personally think Morrowind is more enjoyable than vanilla Oblivion, but there's the possibility that I'll like a modded Oblivion even more when I finally get around to playing it.
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October 8th, 2013, 14:35
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
I prefer Oblivion over Morrowind, for instance.
I also think that's probably what was on my mind the most, and it's still the best reference, not only chronologically. Oblivion plays like a more polished Morrowind but has quite a few differences to Skyrim.

Some reasons:

1. Far better mechanics - as in I love the perks and the more advanced stealth system.
I can agree with the stealth part. I find Skyrim's leveling system simplified in the wrong direction, but it's actually so fundamentally different from the established system since Daggerfall/ Morrowind/ Oblivion that I find them hard to compare. It's like saying I like Skyrim more than Baldur's Gate.

7. I love the dragons.

who doesn't

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October 8th, 2013, 14:41
Originally Posted by Sacred_Path View Post
I also think that's probably what was on my mind the most, and it's still the best reference, not only chronologically. Oblivion plays like a more polished Morrowind but has quite a few differences to Skyrim.



I can agree with the stealth part. I find Skyrim's leveling system simplified in the wrong direction, but it's actually so fundamentally different from the established system since Daggerfall/ Morrowind/ Oblivion that I find them hard to compare. It's like saying I like Skyrim more than Baldur's Gate.

7. I love the dragons.

who doesn't
I don't need games to be similar to like one over the other.

But if you think Skyrim is as different from Oblivion as it is from Baldur's Gate - then I think we have some idea of how sane you are

But I consider Skyrim a huge step up from the ultra dreary skill system in both Oblivion and Morrowind. Those games had no "toys" at all - they just had tiny increments - and Oblivion had, what, 4 dull passives for each skill?

Talk about a snorefest in terms of mechanics. TES games were never big on interesting mechanics, but Skyrim is a gargantuan step in the right direction, if you ask me.

That's one of the best things about Fallout 3. Bethesda figured out why SPECIAL is a cool system: the perks.
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October 8th, 2013, 14:53
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
But if you think Skyrim is as different from Oblivion as it is from Baldur's Gate - then I think we have some idea of how sane you are
Caution: it's not MADSHURE to rephrase people's statements

But I consider Skyrim a huge step up from the ultra dreary skill system in both Oblivion and Morrowind. Those games had no "toys" at all - they just had tiny increments - and Oblivion had, what, 4 dull passives for each skill?
I find the special abilities in Oblivion not necessarily dull, but then I like special moves that are kind of 'realistic' more than things that are gimmicky or cartoony; I'd take Oblivion's disarming over Diablo's whirlwinds (or Skyrim's shouts) any day.

I do find it underwhelming that you get those abilities automatically as your skill increases though. You don't even need a trainer to unlock them or something.

That's one of the best things about Fallout 3. Bethesda figured out why SPECIAL is a cool system: the perks.
Fallout's system is cool because it has both skills and perks. I would have liked to see that in a TES game.

edit: and attributes I mean

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October 8th, 2013, 17:16
I recently played Oblivion on a console and racked up over 300 hours of gaming with it.

I have to say, even with the level scaling, it was a fantastic, immersive experience. The music, the atmosphere, the locations; it was just wonderful.

I can't pick my favorite TES game anymore. They are all equal to me.
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