Your donations keep RPGWatch running!

Elder Scrolls IV: Shivering Isles - All News

Show news in a year(yyyy), month(yyyy/mm) or day:
Show news of type:
Thursday - October 25, 2007
Thursday - September 13, 2007
Thursday - September 06, 2007
Monday - June 11, 2007
Wednesday - May 16, 2007
Tuesday - May 08, 2007
Monday - April 30, 2007
Sunday - April 29, 2007
Saturday - April 28, 2007
Wednesday - April 25, 2007
Sunday - April 22, 2007
Wednesday - April 18, 2007
Tuesday - April 17, 2007
Monday - April 16, 2007
Saturday - April 14, 2007
Thursday - April 12, 2007
Wednesday - April 11, 2007
Tuesday - April 10, 2007
Monday - April 09, 2007
Saturday - April 07, 2007
Friday - April 06, 2007
Wednesday - April 04, 2007
Tuesday - April 03, 2007
Monday - April 02, 2007
Saturday - March 31, 2007
Thursday - March 29, 2007
Wednesday - March 28, 2007
Monday - March 26, 2007
Wednesday - March 21, 2007
Tuesday - March 20, 2007
Friday - March 16, 2007
Tuesday - March 13, 2007
Friday - March 09, 2007
Thursday - March 08, 2007
Wednesday - February 28, 2007
Tuesday - February 27, 2007
Friday - February 23, 2007
Thursday - February 22, 2007
Tuesday - February 20, 2007
Friday - February 16, 2007
Wednesday - February 14, 2007
Monday - February 12, 2007
Thursday - February 08, 2007
Wednesday - February 07, 2007
Tuesday - February 06, 2007
Monday - February 05, 2007
Thursday - February 01, 2007
Saturday - January 20, 2007
Thursday - January 18, 2007
Thursday - January 04, 2007
Saturday - December 30, 2006
Box Art

Thursday - October 25, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Announced for PS3

by Dhruin, 00:05

From Bethsoft:

October 24, 2007 (Rockville, MD) – Bethesda Softworks®, a ZeniMax Media company, announced today that it will release The Elder Scrolls® IV: Shivering Isles™  for PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system from SCEA at retail. This standalone disc will allow gamers who already own The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion to experience the award-winning expansion.

Thursday - September 13, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Walkthrough @ Gamebanshee

by Magerette, 15:39

Gamebanshee has added a walkthrough for the Oblivion expansion Shivering Isles to their database. It covers all thirteen main storyline quests.

You can check it out here

Thursday - September 06, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - 360 Retail Version Announced

by Magerette, 17:56

Gamebanshee has posted a press release from Bethesda Softworks announcing plans to a offer a retail disc containing Shivering Isles and Knights of the Nine content for the Xbox 360 platform:

September 06, 2007 (Rockville, MD) – Bethesda Softworks®, a ZeniMax Media company, announced today that it will release The Elder Scrolls® IV: Shivering Isles™ for Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system from Microsoft at retail. Gamers will now be able to play the award-winning expansion to the 2006 Game of the Year, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion®, without accessing Xbox Live® online entertainment network. The retail disc will also include the downloadable content, The Elder Scrolls® IV: Knights of the Nine™.

Monday - June 11, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - More Reviews

by Dhruin, 23:36

Courtesy of GameBanshee comes ths list of new Shivering Isles reviews:

Source: GameBanshee

Wednesday - May 16, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Reviews @ Boomtown, Worthplaying

by Dhruin, 01:24

Shivering Isles has been reviewed at Boomtown with a score of 8/10:

I personally think that Shivering Isles is a more interesting place than most of the regular Oblivion, and it's a joy to see what waits around the next corner. The official roll call of new content says the expansion features 32 new ingredients, 10 new monsters, 9,500 lines of dialogue, 200 new weapons and 80 kinds of armours and clothes.

To cut to the chase, the expansion is worth all the money for all fans of the regular game. Many of the fundamental problems haven't been solved, but honestly, this game has always been so impressive to me that I can live with the smaller bugs. And Shivering Isles with its mad content is basically an added spice to a dish worthy of several Michelin stars.

...and Worthplaying is next up with a score a 8.5/10:

Without disclosing too much of the storyline, I will say that you won't simply teleport to Shivering Isles; you will first be challenged to prove your worthiness for the task of becoming the mad king's champion. You will need to figure out how to defeat the Gatekeeper of Shivering Isles to obtain the two keys to the Gates of Madness. After successfully defeating the gatekeeper and entering the main portion of the Island, you will need to meet with your new employer (Sheogorath) and assist him with a series of quests. Some of these quests will challenge you to explore your own morality (reminiscent of the classic Ultima series), and other quests will simply be errands to fetch various items.

Tuesday - May 08, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Technical FAQ @ AshleyCheng.com

by Dhruin, 22:59

Ashley Cheng has kicked up a technical FAQ on Shivering Isles culled from the official forums, for those that can't get it to work (both PC and X360).

Monday - April 30, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Updated Patches

by Dhruin, 22:40

From the Elder Scrolls site:

We have released updated patches for all language versions of Shivering Isles. Download the patches here. An Xbox 360 update for Shivering Isles is now available for download from Xbox Live. We have also released an updated patch for Oblivion for the English US version only. Read the full patch notes here and download the patch here.

Sunday - April 29, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Review @ BRnR

by Dhruin, 22:34

A lengthy review of Shivering Isles with several in-character bits is up at the wonderfully named Barry's Rigs 'n' Reviews.  The score is 8.5/10 and here's a snip:

Bethesda has taken the combat routines for the game’s new enemies up a notch from Oblivion and Knights of the Nine, making them a little tougher and more aggressive in their pursuits and attacks—a welcome change. Some are able to cloak themselves and can’t be seen by spells, potions, jewelry and armor that detect life. Some absorb spells and regenerate health faster than you can deal out the punishment. Some you should avoid fighting in water or the rain (or kill as quickly as possible), as it makes them stronger. Some grow larger, stronger and immune to any single elemental spell (fire, frost or shock), requiring that you hit them with multiple elemental spells with opposite effects, or use normal weapons to take them out. The latter option is perhaps the best approach, since these same creatures are quite proficient with their ranged Silence attacks, preventing you from casting spells at all (not all of them are hostile however, and some can actually help you).

Source: Bluesnews

Saturday - April 28, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Review @ YouGamers

by Dhruin, 00:13

Yet another Shivering Isles review, this time at the originally named YouGamers.  The score is 85% and it seems the madcap expansion just isn't quite that mad:

The missions themselves are quite varied, with some amusing and fresh examples such as controlling a dungeon, and killing 3 adventurers, or driving them mad by various hilarious methods (locking treasures away behind some bars and dropping thousands of fake keys, driving the adventurer mad). Unfortunately, the further one advances in the game, the more often one is faced with missions where the player has to simply go and fetch some object from a dungeon, as if the creators of the expansion ran out of ideas.

Wednesday - April 25, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Even More Reviews

by Dhruin, 23:41

Yet another batch of Shivering Isles reviews:

ES4: Shivering Isles - More Reviews

by Dhruin, 01:24

The Elder Scrolls site is pointing out some new Shivering Isles reviews:

Sunday - April 22, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Review @ 2404.org

by Dhruin, 00:18

Another 9/10 for Shivering Isles with 2404.org obviously impressed in their review. Strangely, "many morally ambivalent quests" is listed as a "con" in their summary at the end.  Here's a snip:

The dynamic leveling system of the base game means you could go to the Shivering Isles with a first-level character or one that’s completed the main quests of the original game (i.e., past level 20) and be challenged equally either way, but it’s fairly clear the designers expected a hero at least in the late teens: it’s fairly easy to pick up a whole suit of steel armor within minutes of arrival, and other, similar trinkets are just a bit out of the power range of a starting player.  The quests themselves generally don’t require high-level skills, however, and beating them relies far more on a player’s ability than the character.

Wednesday - April 18, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Unofficial Credits @ ashleycheng.com

by Dhruin, 22:34

I guess in this day of digital downloads and Xbox Live the credits section of game manuals just isn't the same...or there at all.  Ashley Cheng has kicked up the credits for Shivering Isles on his blog, along with the occasional funny comment.  Might be worth a visit for Bethsoft fans.

Tuesday - April 17, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - v1.2.0416 Beta Patch

by Dhruin, 23:43

Bethsoft has released a new v1.2.0416 patch for Shivering Isles that addresses a crash bug:

Fixed a crash caused by bad form IDs

Fixed an issue where the game would try to use form IDs that were either restricted or not available yet.

Monday - April 16, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Review @ GWN

by Dhruin, 22:22

Describing it as possibly the "perfect expansion", Gameworld Network has reviewed Shivering Isles with a score of 96%:

Expansions for popular PC (and now, with downloads available on next generation systems, console) games are certainly nothing new, but rarely are they anywhere near as exciting as the original release.  In most cases they simply add additional content or a few new missions; allowing for a certain degree of replayability or the opportunity to simply make the core game last a bit longer.  The Elder Scrolls IV: Shivering Isles, the first full blown expansion to Bethesda's impressive Oblivion, does something more.  This expansion does more than simply add to the experience provided by the core game; it improves upon it considerably.

Source: Bluesnews

Saturday - April 14, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Reviews @ DEN, GameZone

by Dhruin, 01:58

8.5/10 is the score for Bethsoft's Shivering Isles in Digital Entertainment News' review:

The Shivering Isles are also a bit unbalanced – There’s lots of nifty new equipment and goodies to find for low-to-mid level characters, but higher-level characters may find much of the loot they snag is a bit underwhelming. There’s no less than four or five new varieties of arrows for archers to use, but the selection of other weapons added here seems a bit slim. Alchemists will jump with glee at all the new ingredients for them to play with, but spellmakers and enchanters will find little to amuse them. Warriors and magicians will find enemies that pose new challenges to overcome, but thieves and assassins will be disgusted at how few options they have here – enemies seem just as inept to detect someone skilled at sneak as those in Cyrodiil (if not more so), there’s no local fence, no one to bribe to shed your bounty, and in fact, crimes in Shivering Isles incur a bounty that’s completely separate from crimes in Cyrodiil, meaning that even if you make it back to a guild contact in your homeland, you still won’t be able to bribe your way out of your indiscretions in the Isles.

...and GameZone goes for an 8.9/10:

And while some of Oblivions missions were a little dull Shivering Isles is chalk-full of spectacularly fun things to do. Although most take place in dungeons deep within the earth, the types of missions vary from scavenger hunts to assassinations to setting booby-traps. And to complement the new variety of tasks are a whole slew of fresh items, armor and weapons; every one which you will need to defeat the new monsters and behemoths within the demented worlds including a whole band of knights. The new creatures are pretty challenging, kicking my butt multiple times and will give you a good run for your money.

Thursday - April 12, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Shivering Isles Review @ CVG

by Dhruin, 22:24

Like one lone review before them, CVG isn't entirely convinced by Shivering Isles.  The score in their review is 7.5/10 and here's the introduction:

 My dad, tired of all those "X things to do before you die" lists, is making a list of things he doesn't want to do before he dies. "Go to Ikea ever again," tops his roster.

Here's mine. Purge the dungeon. Reactivate the artefact. Pass the trials. Recover the five pieces. "Take this crystal." I swear to God, someone in the supposedly offbeat madness-themed Shivering Isles actually asks you to "Take this crystal". And sadly, despite its gorgeously wonky scenery, Shivering Isles asks you to do far too many things I never wanted to do again after playing Oblivion - a game I love more than my pet frog who escaped and died when I was a child.

Wednesday - April 11, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Beta Patch

by Dhruin, 22:31

Bethsoft has release a beta v1.2 patch for Shivering Isles to address the bug we reported yesterday.

ES4: Shivering Isles - Reviews @ Gamehelper & TrustedReviews

by Dhruin, 22:26

Fresh reviews for Shivering Isles today at Gamehelper and TrustedReviews, who scored 9/10 and 8/10 respectively.  Here's a quote from the second:

Normally, it’s hard not to be a little ho-hum about expansion packs. They are there to serve the faithful, and as long as they give the hardcore fans more of the stuff they liked originally, then they have done their job. The Shivering Isles, however, really is something different. If it reminds me of anything, it’s The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask – a ‘side story’ that took the central game elements of Ocarina of Time and used them to build something rich, strange and intriguing. The Shivering Isles does much the same thing. It’s not an absolute essential for anyone just getting started in Oblivion – the main game has more than enough to keep most people playing for a year or more – but anyone who has fallen for Bethesda’s creation will find this a compulsive companion to last year’s finest RPG. At less than £20 it offers better value for money than most full games.

Tuesday - April 10, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Serious Bug?

by Dhruin, 23:56

A few boards have had rumours of a serious bug in Shivering Isles for a few days but now there's an official response of sorts and it's hit the pages of Blue's. The Unofficial Elder Scrolls Pages has details and their own fix for PC players:

A very serious bug has been found with Shivering Isles that will render the game unplayable in many ways about 50 to 120 hours of play (better FPS means bug hits earlier) after installing the expansion. The bug will occur if you have SI installed -- regardless of whether you access SI content or not.

The bug is thoroughly confirmed on the PC, and there are now reports of it affecting Xbox users too, although it takes more hours of play to affect Xbox users.

While the situation appeared quite bad initially, a patch mod is now available for the PC and a tool is available to repair savegames that are affected by the bug or that are likely hit by it in the near future. Moreover, there is an official response from Bethesda:

Regarding the issue in which Form ID's are being used at a high rate in the Shivering Isles content; we are aware of the issue and we are currently looking into a solution. We appreciate your patience, especially from those of you affected by this issue, as we carefully work out a fix that will correct this problem without adding any new issues. --NothingCatchy, Developer

Source: Bluesnews

ES4: Shivering Isles - Review @ HookedGamers

by Dhruin, 23:52

Another Shivering Isles review that starts with the now-familiar "let me admit I'm an Oblivion fan" has been published at HookedGamers.  The score is 9/10 and here's a snip:

I cannot stress enough how enjoyable I found interacting with Sheogorath. The voice acting is brilliant, spot on, and the dialog is nothing short of fantastic. He greets you with open arms, and threatens to kill you. Tells you to come back soon, or he will gouge out your eyes – but warns you against coming back before completing your task. He even gives you his chamberlain to harass. It is all quite wonderfully mad. The happy, insane people of Mania and the depressive, cruel denizens of Dementia and their liege who embodies both so perfectly.

Monday - April 09, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Reviews

by Dhruin, 22:24

Gameplay Monthly has a review of Shivering Isles that criticises the title for carrying over the same core problems but praises for interesting quests and NPCs.  The rating is B+ and here's a snip:

Yes. Welcome the return of the horribly designed creature and loot scaling. This topic has beaten to death far too much, so I won't get too much into it. Basically, the terrible scaling system encourages "backwards" character design, suppression of level gaining, and can result in some annoying immersion breakers. For some reason, though, the scaling seems to be somewhat less annoying in the Shivering Isles, with the addition of quite a few unique items and less obvious NPC scaling issues (no armies of glass armor wearing bandits to stick out).

The rest of the gameplay is exactly the same as Oblivion, for better or worse. I won't rehash any of this, since it has already been covered extensively in Oblivion reviews.

Courtesy of the Elder Scrolls site comes news of two more reviews, at Game Vortex (97%) and AceGamez (10/10).  Here's a clip from the latter:

Let us get one thing straight right off the mark: this is not Oblivion in slightly different terrain. The missions and quests in Shivering Isles are not a rehash of adventures that will feel all too familiar; instead, Bethesda have created all-new missions and dungeons that have features unseen in Oblivion and that are much more story-oriented. For example, hidden within the Southern edge of the Shivering Isles (I'll discuss the actual realm and why we're there shortly) you'll find an ancient abandoned temple. Once you get inside it comes to light that it's been infested with ghosts, all looping through time and repeating their greatest moment of failure again and again as they are overrun by the Knights of Order. Unable to physically touch the ghosts, good or bad, you'll need to find a way to help defend the temple and free the ghosts from the curse.

Source: Bluesnews

Saturday - April 07, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Team Q&A #5 @ RPG Vault

by Dhruin, 14:47

RPG Vault's fifth Shivering Isles Team Q&A asks what is "particularly fun, interesting, cool or otherwise notable".  Here's Bruce Nesmith's answer:

Bruce Nesmith
Senior Game Designer
For me it's mostly the little stuff. I worked on some of these, but I'm going to list them anyway. I love watching Sheogorath's animations. They are totally unique from Oblivion. The way he claps sarcastically is brilliant.

I also get a kick out of the graveyard. It's such a simple thing that adds some character to the city. I kill somebody, and the game recognizes it. I also think the daily sermons in the Sacellum are a hoot.

Friday - April 06, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Review @ Eurogamer

by Dhruin, 01:25

It's Eurogamer's turn for a review of Shivering Isles and the expansion comes in for some unexpected critcism.  The score is 7/10 and here's snip:

But anyway, there's a rather more significant problem trotting along behind all this madness stuff, one that does degrade the entire experience. It's this: if you're going to use madness as your core fictional motif, then it suggests you're going to pull out the big guns in terms of story-telling. You know the stuff - paranoia, hallucination, betrayal, trickery, illusion, misdirection, and outright weirdness. A realm of pure madness shouldn't be, well, a teeny bit dull. And that's the problem: The Shivering Isles is mildly eccentric and quite pretty, but it's definitely not ecstatically, brain-boiling insane. As such it's a wasted opportunity. All the characters you meet are supposed to be loonies, but instead they generally just say something a bit odd when you meet them. They have over-the-top character traits, but isn't that a bit like all videogame characters, ever? Instead of making us want to take a step back with this screaming lunacy, or putting a chill in our bones with their grotesque fantasies, they're just a mildly weird. One guy is interested in meat (who isn't?!), another is a bit patronising. One person believes she's going to die, another is worried about diseases. One guy is hungry. Are mad people just hungry? It would explain a lot. One guy - get this - wants a house. The crazy fool!

ES4: Shivering Isles - Team Q&A #4 @ RPG Vault

by Dhruin, 01:18

RPG Vault's fourth outing with the Shivering Isles team asks what stands out the most for each of them:

Adam Adamowicz
Concept Artist
The dialogue is awesome. People are saying really crazy hilarious things. Sitting there playing it, I'm laughing because the armorer in Crucible can't just sell me a sword; she's got to say something like "I hope you're going to use this sword to hollow someone out, and then use them like a toboggan." The Sheogorath dialogue especially is a rip. I don't want to give anything away, so there. The whole time we were trying to design, people kept bouncing ideas off each other like comedy improv, or Mad Libs. Someone would start a topic, and everyone would start jumping in to fill in the blank.

Wednesday - April 04, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Team Q&A #3 @ RPG Vault

by Dhruin, 23:26

Moving on to the third Shivering Isles Team Q&A at RPG Vault, the question for each team member is the most memorable thing in each of the two realms:

Adam Adamowicz
Concept Artist
Dementia has nightly knife fights on the roof of Sickly Bernice's, which contributes to the overall psycho miasma of the place, not to mention the sickly yellow rivulets running through the streets. It's like even the buildings are sweating.

Mania, on the other hand, despite the bright colors and excellent gardening, isn't a cloying plastic paradise. The people are a little off, and so the effect is like Timothy Leary does Renaissance Fair. Cool. One thing that sticks out is this who dude rolls up and he says "Have you seen my spoon?" and you know there's going to be a quest. And there is. A lot of things end up dying because of that spoon.

ES4: Shivering Isles - Team Q&A #2 @ RPG Vault

by Dhruin, 00:31

A second Q&A with several members of Bethsoft's Shivering Isles team is now up.  This time the single question put to each participant is their favourite place in the expansion:

Megan Sawyer
Associate Artist
I built the random camps you run across while playing the game, so each one of those is special to me. If they're not quest-specific and I have free reign over them, I make up odd stories about each one and clutter them to tell the story. For Breakneck Camp, I designed it solely around the name, making it a weird conglomeration of stairs and rocks.

My favorite one was Blood Island Camp, though. I decided the poor folks who settled there brought a little too much Feldew from Mania with them, and one night, didn't notice as Grummites laid eggs under their house, and one day, they hatched and the Grummites killed everyone. That's the one thing Zealots never could stand about Dementia - all the damn Grummites.

Tuesday - April 03, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Review @ GWN

by Dhruin, 23:54

Gameworld Network has kicked up a review of Shivering Isles, with a score of 95%.  This clip might be seen as a very mild spoiler:

In one wild example of the madness that is Shivering Isles. A man named Hirrus Clutumnus cannot bear the tortures of living, or the sheer pain of everyday life. He hires you out for a contract killing… on himself. He doesn’t want to see it coming or feel any pain. Once he’s dead, he tells you to rob his body of his house key and take whatever we want from inside. I chose to stalk him for an afternoon, and when he stopped to enjoy the view of the city from a high altitude vantage point, I shot him with an arrow in the back which sent him plummeting to his death. Upon hitting the street below, I hear a fain “finally, peace at last. Thank you.” That has to be one of the greatest highlights of the game considering it was so faint, I had to re-load the mission about 10 different times to catch exactly what he said. One word comes to mind, “brilliant”.

Monday - April 02, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Team Q&A @ RPG Vault

by Dhruin, 22:25

RPG Vault has a new Team Q&A feature, with this one offering brief comments from various Bethsoft personnel on their favourite enemies in Shivering Isles:

Joel Burgess
Level Designer
To focus on one, I'd pick the Scalon. One of my favorite experiences in Shivering Isles is exploring some watery hole and seeing the telltale ripple of a Scalon stalking the coastline, invisible. They're particularly fearsome on land too, because of a lunging power attack that covers a ton of ground. Not to mention, their fins are a great alchemical reagent.

ES4: Shivering Isles - Review @ AtomicGamer

by Dhruin, 22:19

The latest Shivering Isles review comes from AtomicGamer, who awarded a score of 89%:


 But it's the interesting designs that went into both the world and its characters that really make this expansion so endearing.  From Sheogorath's constantly amusing dialogue to the larger degree of emotion and mood that goes into the world design and its inhabitants, I think you'll find that while Oblivion was more of a traditional RPG setting, this expansion channels a bit of that alien weirdness from Morrowind and then takes it to a new level with the Mania/Dementia angle.

Source: Bluesnews

Saturday - March 31, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - More Reviews

by Dhruin, 01:02

Bethsoft has listed four new Shivering Isles (mostly X360) reviews.  Here's a list:

...and here's a cliip from the first:

The core missions at the heart of The Shivering Isles are fairly varied, although there are a few that simply task you with fetching an object or running an errand for Sheogorath. A few of them are fairly offbeat, especially the one that tasks you with dispatching a party of adventurers in some cruel and unusual ways. You’ll also have some choices to make that will actually change the game further on down the line, so it pays to give them some thought. All in all, the core quest is a lot of fun, and is definitely one of the most enjoyable storylines in the whole Oblivion universe. It’ll keep you busy for a while, too, as we finished it in roughly 10 hours or so.

Thursday - March 29, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Reviews @ GamingHeaven, GameDaily

by Dhruin, 22:17

GamingHeaven has given Shivering Isles a big thumbs up in their review.  They list no real flaws and diversity as features and the score is 92% - here's a snip:

Bethesda has listened to the fans and has made some improvements and added some nice touches to the overall experience. However, those who complained about the combat style will likely still be frustrated. For myself, though, I don’t do melee fighting nearly as much as I do Summoned Creatures and Spell Casting. There are so many ways to enjoy – and WIN -- the fights that it’s really not fair, in my mind, to find that much fault with the combat.

GameDaily takes a similar stance with a score of 9/10:

Game play pretty much mirrors what players have come to expect from Oblivion, with plenty of underground dungeon crawling, new magic spells, armor and weapons to go around. The land has plenty of side quests in addition to its very compelling main story, where players need to work their way up in rank and prestige within the Court of Madness. While most quests seem pretty straightforward, some can be maddeningly challenging, particularly in one quest where the player needs to consume drugs in order to stay mobile, or else become weakened and immoblized by the weight of their own gear.

Source: Bluesnews

Wednesday - March 28, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview #2 @ RPG Vault

by Dhruin, 23:20

The second part of RPG Vault's interview on the Shivering Isles is now up:

Jonric: What else does Shivering Isles implement in the way of new content? For instance, what are the quests like this time?

Bruce Nesmith:
For those gamers into alchemy, the Shivering Isles has a whole new ecology. All of the new ingredients can be used with those from Cyrodiil. There are new spells that can be purchased in the shops of New Sheoth. Sheogorath will even grant you new powers as you complete his tasks.

As for quests, the main story is about over a dozen quests, and there about the same number of miscellaneous ones. Those are scattered around the city and small settlements in the island. Most of the quests are more detailed and involved than those in Oblivion.

ES4: Shivering Isles - Reviews @ GameSpot, GameSpy

by Dhruin, 23:17

GameSpot has kicked up their review of Shivering Isles.  The score is 8.6/10 and here's the opening:

As if to answer the decades-old query posed by Iron Maiden in the single "Can I Play With Madness," Bethesda Softworks brings you The Elder Scrolls IV: Shivering Isles, an expansion in which you most definitely can play with madness. Shivering Isles is an expansion to The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and introduces a new world along with a lengthy major quest. It also includes several minor quests, new spells and items, and dozens of completely insane characters with which to interact. The theme of the new world is madness, which is manifested in the batty characters and the twisted yet beautiful landscape. Aside from the new realm, there isn't anything in this expansion that will significantly alter or enhance your experience with the rest of the game. So if you're content with Oblivion, you won't miss out on any integral updates if you decide to pass on Shivering Isles. However, even though Shivering Isles isn't a must-have expansion, it's an excellent value based on the amount of content alone, and a great excuse to revisit an already excellent game.

...and GameSpy's review has a score of 4/5:

This main storyline is Shivering Isles' greatest strength. In terms of sheer complexity, it easily rivals the best quests of the original game and it far surpasses them in sheer fun. Early on in the main quest, Lord Sheogorath asks the player to reactivate one of his favorite "recreational sites." This turns out to be an elaborate deathtrap for adventurers in which the mad god can watch them run through his maze and push buttons that either drive them insane or outright kill them. Naturally the player also gets a chance to do this with a poor unfortunate party once the area is repaired, and it marked some of my most enjoyable experiences in the game.

ES4: Shivering Isles - Reviews @ OXM, IGN & UGO

by Dhruin, 00:28

If you have a website that goes by an acronym, it looks like you released a review for the Xbox 360 version of Shivering Isles today. Let's start with the Official Xbox Magazine who rave about this expansion and award 9/10:

Meanwhile, Bethesda has turned the limitations of its technology into features. For example, the NPC conversations in Oblivion were slightly nuts and repetitive because of the way they were randomly generated. The ones in The Shivering Isles are even more nuts, but it doesn’t feel out of place as the characters are insane anyway. Some talk of the air turning bad, some have delusions of grandeur, some are simply homicidal. In the town of Split, all the townsfolk can talk of is murdering their doppelgangers who live on the other side of the street. Because of the oddly stilted way in which the conversation is delivered and the extremely inappropriate facial expressions, the feeling of madness is wholesale. 

IGN goes for a more informative article and a score of 8.3/10:

Throughout the course of your journey battling the Greymarch, Jyggalag, and the Knights of Order, you'll be given a significant amount of choice. The decisions you make regarding how to comply with Sheogorath's wishes have substantial and permanent effects on the game world and storyline, including determining which major NPC players live or die, what titles you receive, and ultimately what kind of specialized armor set you're rewarded with later on. By giving the player choices with real consequences, the game manages to captivate like no linear game possibly could. It works to make the virtual world seem more realistic, and make you, the player, relish a greater sense of power and individuality. Once finished with the quest line, you're also rewarded with a few interesting abilities and responsibilities which should keep this content fresh for at least a little while longer.

...and finally to UGO with an "A" grade but who don't get a quote because their format changes pages in the middle of paragraphs.

ES4: Shivering Isles - Now Available

by Dhruin, 00:00

Pete Hines sent the following press release over announcing the availabilty of Shivering Isles:

Bethesda Softworks Announces

The Elder Scrolls® IV: Shivering Isles™ Now Available

Official Expansion for The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion®,

Available on Windows and Xbox 360™ Starting Today

March 27, 2007 (Rockville, MD) — Bethesda Softworks®, a ZeniMax Media company, and 2K today announced that The Elder Scrolls® IV: Shivering Isles™, the official expansion for the award-winning The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion®, is now shipping to retail stores throughout North America for Windows. Shivering Isles is also available today on Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system from Microsoft via Xbox Live® online entertainment network.

Shivering Isles features more than 30 hours of new gameplay and allows you to explore an entirely new plane of Oblivion – the realm of Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of Madness. Shivering Isles adds to the existing world of Oblivion so you can continue playing with your existing save game/character, or create an all new character just to explore the new content. 

Within the Realm of Sheogorath, players can explore the two extreme sides of the god’s madness – the sublimely creative and the completely psychotic. Something is happening to the Shivering Isles and Sheogorath himself looks to you to be his champion and defend his realm and its inhabitants from destruction. Do you have the strength to survive his trials, tame a realm fraught with paranoia and despair, and wear the mantle of a God?

The Shivering Isles features a bizarre landscape split between the two sides – Mania and Dementia –filled with vast, twisting dungeons mirroring the roots of the trees they are buried within. You’ll encounter more than a dozen new creatures including hideous insects, Flesh Atronachs, skeletal Shambles, and amphibious Grummites. Throughout your adventure, you will discover all new items, ingredients, spells, and much more. Or, you can have the talented craftsmen of Crucible and Bliss forge new armor and weapons just for you.

Released in March 2006 for Xbox 360™ videogame and entertainment system from Microsoft and Windows, Oblivion sold more than three million units in 2006. Among the countless awards and accolades it has garnered to date are Game of the Year and RPG of the Year honors from numerous outlets, including Spike TV’s 2006 Video Game Awards, G4’s G-phoria, the Golden Joystick Awards, GameSpot.com, ShackNews.com, Voodoo Extreme, FiringSquad.com, and many more. Oblivion received the #1 ranking on PC Gamer’s (UK) list of the top 100 games of all time and is the highest rated Xbox 360 game of all time according to Gamerankings.com and Metacritic.com.

The Windows version of Shivering Isles is available at retail and is co-published by Bethesda Softworks and 2K, while the Xbox 360 version is available through Xbox Live® online entertainment network by Bethesda Softworks. For more information on Oblivion, Shivering Isles, or The Elder Scrolls, visit the official web site: www.elderscrolls.com.

Ashley Cheng's blog also has some points to remember for Xbox360 updaters (I thought consoles were supposed to be easier?) :

Make sure you get the 1.2 title update. If you did not put your Oblivion disk and get the title update and you downloaded Shivering Isles, your game will not work. And -- again -- with Live down, you can't get the title update either. Unfortunately, there is no other way to get title updates. Live is scheduled to be back up later this afternoon, hopefully around 5 PM EST.

Monday - March 26, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ AtomicGamer

by Dhruin, 22:19

Yes, another one. AtomicGamer has rolled out a Shivering Isles interview with Bruce Nesmith:

Jeff: Have you guys got anything new planned using Radiant AI for The Shivering Isles?

Bruce: Heck, we weren't even able to take full advantage of it in Oblivion. So instead of extending its functionality, we used what we had to better effect. You'll find that most of the characters in the Shivering Isles have more detailed schedules, animations, and conversations.

Source: Bluesnews

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ RPG Vault

by Dhruin, 14:48

The Shivering Isles interviews keep on coming, with RPG Vault kicking up the first part of a discussion with Bruce Nesmith last Friday:

Jonric: How will Shivering Isles build upon Oblivion? What are you aiming for with the main additions, changes and improvements you're implementing? How different can we expect the expansion to be?

Bruce Nesmith: The Shivering Isles are reached by a gateway to another realm. The name of the realm is the Shivering Isles, a land created by and ruled by the Daedric Prince Sheogorath. The gateway opens on a small island in Niben Bay off the coast of Bravil.

We wanted to create a land that felt appropriate as the home of the Daedric Prince of Madness. We knew it should have a high fantasy feel, much more so than Cyrodiil. We also knew it couldn't be too wacky, or it wouldn't be playable. With those ideas in mind, our art staff came up with new and strange plants and rock formations. Everything is new in the Shivering Isles. All of the plants, monsters, rocks, buildings and clothing are new. Even the sky and weather is different than Cyrodiil.

Things work a bit differently in the Shivering Isles, but only there. Gameplay in Cyrodiil is not changed in this expansion. For example, any bounty on your head is ignored in the Shivering Isles. However, you can collect a new bounty here that likewise will be ignored in Cyrodiil. Even going to jail is different. You are tossed into the bottom of a dungeon, without any of your stuff. If you can fight your way out, you'll find you precious equipment by the exit door. Once you've made it out, all is forgiven. This is just a sampling of the differences.

Wednesday - March 21, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Achievement Points, Forum Change

by Dhruin, 23:59

For those with a 360 and who follow such things, Ashley Cheng has added an item to his blog listing the 10 new Achievements for Shivering Isles.

As a side issue, Ashley also notes the Official Elder Scrolls forums have been rebranded to Bethesda Game Studios forums. Fallout 3: A Post Nuclear Blog notes that Michael "Sentinel" Wagner explained the name change (thanks Briosafreak):

As you can tell, we have updated the forums. These are now the Bethesda Game Studios forums. These forums will cover all games that we develop in-house. This does not include games we only publish like (Rogue Warrior, Cthulhu, Star Trek, etc.) those will have/or have their own separate forums.

Eventually, when we are closer to releasing more information, you will see a Fallout 3 forum here, as well as any future TES games we may work on.

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ Killer Betties

by Dhruin, 23:42

Killer Betties is the next site to have an interview on Shivering Isles, with Bruce Nesmith providing the answers this time around:

There are 10 new creatures in Shivering Isles. How many of these are completely new creations and how many came from past Elder Scrolls games? Which new creatures can you currently tell us about and how they exist and battle against the player within this world?

It depends on how we define creatures. Golden Saints and Dark Seducers are from past Elder Scrolls games, but they're actually NPCs in the expansion, so the player can interact with them outside of combat. For actual creatures, there are a couple that have been pulled from past games, such as the Flesh Atronach and the Hunger.

Another fun new creature is the Scalon. They're these large, hulking creatures that live mostly near water. They're strong, but they're sneaky. Some of them have a bad habit of turning invisible when they detect the player, then leaping a good distance to attack. It’s fun to watch players jump in their chairs when they are attacked.

Source: Bluesnews

Tuesday - March 20, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ Planet Scrolls

by Dhruin, 20:54

Planet Scrolls has the latest Pete Hines interview, discussing Shivering Isles.  Here's a bit that indicates Bethsoft is quite happy with the scaling system:

We know the Shivering Isles will be leveled to your characters level, does this mean that there will be completely different creatures at lower levels that the ones you see at higher levels? For example: at level one in Cyrodiil, if you enter a goblin cave, you will have "goblins" and "goblin skirmishers" but if you enter at a higher level you will have "goblin warlords" and such. So to get the most out of the expansion, should you play it at different levels and not just finish it by level 10?

Yes, creatures work much the same way they do in Oblivion with some small modifications. If you're creating a game, or an expansion, where you allow anyone to go anywhere they want you have to let the game adjust for that otherwise it's way too hard for some folks and way too easy for the others. Ideally you should pick a character that you enjoy and feel is suited for the challenge Sheogorath is going to lay before you and have at it. Whether you're at level 5 or 25, you're going to have fun. That being said, it is our assumption that someone playing Shivering Isles has played a great deal of Oblivion, so the content takes that into consideration.

Friday - March 16, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ Onthebox.com

by Dhruin, 23:24

A new Shivering Isles interview is up at Xbox site Onthebox.com, talking with Bethsoft's Bruce Nesmith:

OTX: Oblivion was praised for its “do whatever you want” style of gameplay. Has this stayed the same or how have you improved on this type of gameplay, if at all in Shivering Isles?

BN: The Shivering Isles continues in the grand tradition of Oblivion to give you the ability to do whatever you want. We didn’t want to change the fundamental rules of the game for those players that already have characters and want to keep playing with them…so we didn’t.

There are some things that work differently in the Shivering Isles, though. For example, crime and punishment are different. Any bounty that you have in Cyrodiil is ignored in the Shivering Isles, and vice versa. So if you have a large price on your head, you might want to consider vacationing with Sheogorath. If you are caught committing a crime in his lands, you aren’t sent to jail. Instead you are dropped into the bottom of a dungeon, without any of your stuff. You can still choose to sleep it off and get everything back, or you can try and make it out of the dungeon. If you do escape, all is forgiven and your stuff is in a chest by the exit door. You are considered to have served your time.

Players can go to the Shivering Isles at any time, and at any level. You can go there as soon as you escape from the Imperial Sewers, right after character generation. Or you can take your existing character that is level 30 and has shut down the Oblivion gates and solved all of the guild quests. Or anywhere in between. We’ve made sure that the Shivering Isles will accommodate everyone. And, you can go back to Cyrodiil and at any point to go back and resume doing whatever you were doing in Oblivion before you entered Shivering Isles.

Tuesday - March 13, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Screens @ Worthplaying

by Dhruin, 22:43

Head to Worthplaying to check out six new Shivering Isles screens.

Friday - March 09, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Preview @ CVG

by Dhruin, 12:44

The latest preview of Shivering Isles is from CVG and covers well known territory:

The Shivering Isles are not a geographical location in Tamriel, they're the plane of Sheogorath, the god - no less - of madness. He does feature in Oblivion - his one quest for you is to make the apocalyptic prophecies of some backward villagers come true, in order to convince them of the end times and destroy their sanity. You and he team up to bring them a plague of rats, kill all their livestock, and then Sheogorath makes it rain burning dogs. Madness is what he does, all day long, and now you're in his jungle.

Thursday - March 08, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Trailer

by Dhruin, 20:33

Pete Hines from Bethsoft sends word of a new Shivering Isles trailer, which you can grab straight from Bethsoft (38Mb lo-res, 79Mb hi-res).

Wednesday - February 28, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Preview @ Games Radar

by Dhruin, 22:32

Games Radar is the latest site to take a look at Shivering Isles.  Here's a bit on Radiant AI:

As we said at the beginning, this is more than just an expansion pack. So long is it, and so radically different from the world contained within the original disk, that Shivering Isles may as well be called a sequel. At the very least, it’s a refinement of Oblivion - with a smaller area to play with, Bethesda has been able to really work on the world they’ve created, and the end result is something which just feels tighter, more focused and just plain better than before.

Take the NPCs, for example. While you couldn’t say they were more “well-rounded” exactly - in fact, far from it, they’re insane - Bethesda admits that their Radiant AI system wasn’t used to its full potential in the main Oblivion quests; this time they’ve been given a blank check for mayhem, with the smaller world and way-out setting enabling them to create some truly unforgettable characters.

Tuesday - February 27, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Only Expansion @ OXM

by Dhruin, 08:36

OXM is reporting an interview with 360 Magazine that sees Pete Hines saying Shivering Isles will be the first and last Oblivion expansion:

Speaking to 360 Gamer Magazine, Bethesda's Peter Hines stated; "Work pretty much started on Shivering Isles once Oblivion was done. We started looking at what we wanted to do, where we wanted to set it, all that stuff. It pretty much started last March. Shivering Isles is our last big thing: it’s our first and last expansion for Oblivion."

Source: GameBanshee

Friday - February 23, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ Gamesblog

by Dhruin, 20:45

The Shivering Isles interviews are coming in at light-speed with The Guardian's Gamesblog the latest to chat with Pete Hines on the upcoming expansion:

Talking of leveling, there has been some criticism about the leveling structure in Oblivion, with some players annoyed that their enemies level when they do. What are your thoughts on this and why was this designed into the game?

You do see different creatures based on what level you are, but they don't level to your level. We only level up boss creatures in certain cases, so it's not something that happens all the time. It's a fair comment, but the challenge is to try to make a game that allows you to go wherever you want and do whatever you want while also making sure that you can actually do something there.

Thursday - February 22, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ Pro-G

by Dhruin, 22:05

Pete Hines has spoken to Pro-G about Elder Scrolls and the Shivering Isles expansion in an interview posted a day or so ago, which we overlooked initially because the same site also had a preview.  The headline is "Bethesda Open to Making Elder Scrolls MMO" but there isn't much to the actual quote:

Pro-G: With the success of World of Warcraft, have you ever considered The Elder Scrolls online?

PH: We get asked that a lot. The problem is that they are very different experiences. If you play Oblivion then everything you do in the world is about permanence - the world literally revolves around you. I finished that quest, it stays finished and if I kill someone he stays dead. With MMOs anything you do in World of Warcraft can be done by someone else two minutes later. That guy is going to respawn two minutes later and that other guy still needs a trinket even though you just gave it to him. Certainly, there's a chance, it's something we've talked about, but it's not anywhere in our immediate future. I don't think we could do an MMO unless it was with some fresh idea that no one has ever tried before.

Tuesday - February 20, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Previews @ GameDaily & Pro-G

by Dhruin, 22:45

More Elder Scrolls IV: Shivering Isles previewage with GameDaily and Pro-G offering up their impressions.  Here's a bit from the latter:

The striking thing about The Shivering Isles is that it's totally unlike Mehrune's realm. It's easy to forget that the red-soaked skies are not the norm and that each plane of Oblivion is shaped by the Daedric Lord who rules it. Despite its name, which summons up images of arctic vistas and falling snow, the Shivering Isles is actually an autumnal realm. The blue-gold sky is positively pleasant and the landscape is dotted with large crystalline structures, huge mushroom trees and long vine-like roots; but the land itself is split in two, each half filled with strange creatures, mist, moss and swamps.

Friday - February 16, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ Game Informer

by Dhruin, 22:55

While Pete Hines is entertaining SPOnG, Todd Howard has popped up at Game Informer to talk about Shivering Isles.  Here's an honest reply:

GI: Are there new mounts?

Howard: No. We’re less a fan of the horses than most people.

GI: Why?

Howard: Truthfully, I think they’re nice—people in a game like this want to ride horses. But they probably don’t do everything they could do. They never, for me, got to the final level that I think they could have, as far as how they feel, fighting on them--other things like that. They’re good for quickly riding around the world, and that’s fine. You do, when you play the game, see, “They could do this for the horses, or they could do this for the horses, and it doesn’t.” So, we kept them out of this.

Source: RPG Codex

Wednesday - February 14, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Preview @ Games Radar

by Dhruin, 09:31

Games Radar is the latest site to offer a Shivering Isles preview.  As usual for them, it's fairly short on text and high in screens but here's a taste:

You'll begin your questing on an Oz-like journey to see the Wizard, or should we say Sheogorath, the delightfully demented Daedric Prince of the Shivering Isles. But rather than following the yellow brick road to the Emerald City, you wander through the psychedelic briar-patch of Mania and Dementia to Sheogorath's palace. Like the lobotomized brain of an incurable schizophrenic, the Shivering Isles have been divided into two halves to better represent the exquisite agony of madness.

Monday - February 12, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Preview @ 1Up

by Dhruin, 12:28

1Up has re-printed a Shivering Isles preview that originally appeared in GFW #04.  Here's a grab:

 How big are the Shivering Isles? According to Nelson, Sheogorath's madcap realm adds roughly a quarter more real estate via its own pinched-off plane. "The realm of Oblivion comprises many different planes of existence--each of the Daedric Princes has his own," Nelson explains. "In Oblivion, the player was only able to explore one (Mehrunes Dagon's plane). The Shivering Isles is another plane belonging to Sheogorath." But where Dagon's plane was fragmented and often randomly generated, Sheogorath's Shivering Isles is one contiguous land mass. "It's a completely new world, with settlements, a major city (New Sheoth), large regions of wilderness, and many residents."

Thursday - February 08, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Preview @ VoodooExtreme

by Dhruin, 20:23

VoodooExtreme is the next site to toss up some hands-on impressions of Shivering Isles:

Just how is this dramatic claim embodied? The expansion starts with your character hearing a rumor that a strange door has appeared on a small island in the Niben Bay near Bravil, and that it should be investigated. The island is small, and is topped by what can be described as a giant, mutated Easter Island-like head with three faces. Everything seems different: rocks, grass, plants, water, etc.. We find strange mushrooms growing ubiquitously, with names like Putrid Gigantea (putrid with mottling and some green slimy nodes on it), Worm's Head and something called a Mushroom Tree Sapling.

ES4: Shivering Isles - Previews @ CVG, Gamehelper, Shacknews

by Dhruin, 09:03

A trio of new Shivering Isles previews is available on the 'net with articles from CVG, Gamehelper and Shacknews.  Here's a snip from the latter:

Though questing itself is handled essentially the same as it is in Oblivion, there are some new gameplay elements as well as some modified ones. For example, the prison system is handled in a different, and somewhat more brutal way. Upon being apprehended, your equipment is confiscated and you are placed in a dungeon--an actual, dungeon-crawling dungeon, not merely an underground  cell. To reacquire your belongings, you must fight your way out of the dungeon with little more than your fists. Failing to do so, you may simply wait out your sentence.

Source: Bluesnews

Wednesday - February 07, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Hands-On @ IGN

by Dhruin, 10:05

IGN is the next site to offer a hands-on walkthrough of some of their Shivering Isles experiences.  It's a detailed three-page article and here's a sample of their experience:

We first came upon Jayred Ice-Veins, an archer with a plan. If we raided the nearby Gardens of Flesh and Bone, we could fashion bone arrows of the same aspect as the Guardian's, and therefore do more damage, somehow. To the Garden we headed, picked the lock on the front gate, and had a battle against some fierce skeletal guardians to procure the arrows. With the new ammunition in hand, we headed through Passwall again and found another villager who, after a sufficient amount of bribery, spilled that the Guardian was especially vulnerable to the tears of his mother, who allegedly visits the monster every midnight. Sure enough, she showed up right on time and wept beside her horrific child, and, luckily, dropped a soaked handkerchief. We darted in, snatched the handkerchief, and applied it as a poison to our sword. The ensuing battle with the guardian was over pretty quickly, and with the keys to Dementia and Mania in hand, we proceeded into the world of the Shivering Isles.

Tuesday - February 06, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Hands-On @ 1Up

by Dhruin, 22:46

1Up has some hands-on impressions from Shivering Isles, walking the reader through their early experiences (spoilers may apply?):

Choice figures prominently throughout the expansion. The gate itself even offers you two doors from which to choose. Both lead to Sheogorath, but depending which you chose you'll either set foot in Mania or Dementia first. Imagine the realm as the projected psyche of the Prince of Madness, divided somewhat like what Freud described as the id and super-ego. In Mania excesses reign supreme; it's a bacchanalian celebration gone awry and everything glistens with an unbelievable sheen. Head to the other side and you get the baser side, and a real sense of descending into Dementia. Everything is dark and foreboding creating a twisted landscape Tim Burton could be proud of. Nowhere is the difference more pronounced than in the main city of each side. Guards in gilded armor patrol the avenues of Mania's Bliss while over in Dimentia the buildings seem to be closing in on you in the dirty narrow alleys of Crucible.

Monday - February 05, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ ActionTrip

by Dhruin, 22:29

Another interview again sees Mark Nelson dicussing the Shivering Isles expansion for Oblivion.  Here's a snip from the interview at ActionTrip:

ActionTrip: I seem to recall that Elder Scrolls III add-ons (both Tribunal and Bloodmoon) were quite challenging. You needed to achieve a certain level before you can measure up to the new foes. Is the development team following the same principals with Shivering Isles?

Mark Nelson: Not exactly. The Shivering Isles material doesn't require that the player be high-level at all. It's completely approachable for any level character. In general, though, the quests are longer and more complex, and experienced players will probably have a slight edge when it comes to completing them.

Thursday - February 01, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Interview @ FiringSquad

by Dhruin, 20:19

Bethsoft's Shivering Isles expansion for Oblivion is the subject of an interview at FiringSquad.  Providing the fairly routine answers is Lead Designer, Mark Nelson - one of the few occasions Pete Hines or one of the Producers hasn't been the public face:

FiringSquad: Will the art style of Shivering Isles be radically different than the original game?

Mark Nelson: Absolutely. We always want the player to know that he's playing in the expansion material. The Shivering Isles has a very different feel. It's much less of a traditional medieval fantasy look, and has more of an exotic feel.

FiringSquad: What sort of new character options will the player have when creating a new character for Shivering Isles?

Mark Nelson: The character creation system from the base game hasn't changed for the expansion. Still, there are tons of new clothing, armor, and weapon options in the expansion to allow the player to further customize his character.

Saturday - January 20, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - product page launched

by Garrett, 12:50

Bethesda has set up a product page for Shivering Isles, the upcoming new expansion for Oblivion. There is not much (new) info on it however...

Thursday - January 18, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - First Screens

by Dhruin, 20:43

We've added the first official Shivering Isles screens to our gallery, which you can check out here.

ES4: Shivering Isles - Official Announcement from Bethesda

by Txa1265, 17:54

Directly from Bethesda comes the official announcement of the expansion to Oblivion, called 'The Shivering Isles'

Bethesda Softworks Announces The Elder Scrolls IV:

Shivering Isles™ — Official Expansion for Oblivion

Spring Release Planned for Official Expansion for 2006 Game of the Year

as Oblivion Sales Top Three Million Units

January 18 2007 (Rockville, MD) — Bethesda Softworks®, a ZeniMax Media company, today confirmed the upcoming release of The Elder Scrolls IV®: Shivering Isles™, the official expansion for the award-winning The Elder Scrolls IV®: Oblivion™.  Shivering Isles will be released for Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and Windows this Spring. Details are presented in the exclusive cover story for Official Xbox Magazine’s (US) February issue, which hits newsstands this week.

Shivering Isles features more than 30 hours of new gameplay and allows you to explore an entirely new plane of Oblivion – the realm of Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of Madness. Shivering Isles adds to the existing world of Oblivion so you can continue playing with your existing save game/character, or create an all new character just to explore the new content.  

“We’re thrilled with the response that Oblivion has received to date and feel that Shivering Isles will offer a whole new and different experience to anyone who played and enjoyed Oblivion,” said Todd Howard, executive producer for The Elder Scrolls.

Within the Realm of Sheogorath, players can explore the two extreme sides of the god’s madness – the sublimely creative and the completely psychotic. Something is happening to the Shivering Isles and Sheogorath himself looks to you to be his champion and defend his realm and its inhabitants from destruction. Do you have the strength to survive his trials, tame a realm fraught with paranoia and despair, and wear the mantle of a God?

The Shivering Isles features a bizarre landscape split between the two sides – Mania and Dementia –filled with vast, twisting dungeons mirroring the roots of the trees they are buried within. You’ll encounter more than a dozen new creatures including hideous insects, Flesh Atronachs, skeletal Shambles, amphibious Grummites. Throughout your adventure, you will discover all new items, ingredients, spells, and more, and have the talented craftsmen of Crucible and Bliss forge new armor and weapons just for you.

“The enthusiastic response we’ve received to our downloadable content has been overwhelming, and we’re excited to bring Oblivion fans a full expansion,” said Vlatko Andonov, president of Bethesda Softworks. “The world we’ve created for Shivering Isles is unlike anything you’ve seen or played in Oblivion and we can’t wait for folks to play it.”

Released in March 2006 for Xbox 360™ videogame and entertainment system from Microsoft and Windows, Oblivion sold more than three million units in 2006. Among the countless awards and accolades it has garnered to date are Game of the Year and RPG of the Year honors from numerous outlets, including Spike TV’s 2006 Video Game Awards, G4’s G-phoria, the Golden Joystick Awards, GameSpot.com, ShackNews.com, Voodoo Extreme, FiringSquad.com, and many more. Oblivion received the #1 ranking on PC Gamer’s (UK) list of the top 100 games of all time and is the highest rated Xbox 360 game of all time according to Gamerankings.com.

The Windows version of Shivering Isles will be available at retail and is co-published by Bethesda Softworks and 2K Games, while the Xbox 360 version is currently planned for release through Xbox Live® online entertainment network by Bethesda Softworks. For more information on Oblivion, Shivering Isles, or The Elder Scrolls, visit the official web site: www.elderscrolls.com


Source: Bethesda Softworks

Thursday - January 04, 2007

ES4: Shivering Isles - Snippets @ CVG

by Dhruin, 20:57

CVG has a preview of the upcoming issue of PC Zone (one of the UK magazines in their stable), which offers some (very) brief details on Oblivion's Shivering Isles expansion.  According to the blurb, this addon will offer 30 hours of gameplay and branching quests:

Revealed in the latest edition of PC Zone magazine, word is that the expansion will offer 30-plus hours of new adventuring, features new quests, monsters, expanded freeform gameplay - quest lines that branch more than before, for example - and a new land "that you can watch change according to your vital life-or-death decisions".

Saturday - December 30, 2006

ES4:SI - New Oblivion Expansion sort of announced

by Garrett, 17:46

A thread at the official forum pointed out that there is a preview of The Elder Scrolls IV new expansion - Shivering Isles on the February 2007 issue of PC Gamer US with article summary: 

Expansions are always difficult for a developer, as giving the same is boring, and departing from the established too much alienates fans.

In an attempt to avoid this conundrum, the expansion for the popular Elder Scrolls IV will add a unique twist to the established formula - it changes little gameplay wise, but adds a whole lot of totally new and unique content.

Rather than expand into another province of Tamriel, Bethesda dipped into the lore and decided to transport players to the 'Shivering Isles' known also as 'The realm of Madness', the daedric realm ruled by the prince Sheogorath. (Just on a side note, if anyone has the played the Sheogorath Shrine Quests, they should set the tone for the expansion - twisted and at times sadistic humor).

The god Juggalef is preparing his 'once-in-an-eon' Greymarch - a cleansing of the land and everyone within, including, by extension, Sheogorath himself. With this premise you are allowed entry to the shivering isles, a place where everything is a bit off - including the plants, landscapes, creatures and NPCs.

The strangeness of the Shivering isles creates a lot of humor - "Not only are a lot of the NPCs downright hilarious, thanks to the insanity that permeates the land, but the humor also lends something of a clasic LucasArts adventure game bent to the Quests you'll embark upon. You'll laugh more in 10 hours with Shivering isles than you did with 100 hours with the parent game".

One quest has you deciding the fate of a group of adventurers who have strayed into a dungeon in search of great riches. You, along with one of Sheogoraths minions get to decide the fate of said adventurers, as Sheogorath has already decided that they are to die. You can kill them outright, or use traps and illusions within the dungeons to drive them insane (ie the adventurers see a locked cage filled with unimaginable riches - you can opt to electrify the cage, killing anyone who touches it, walk in and kill them yourself, or drop thousands of key in the room, driving them insane as they search for the real one).

You will be able to move between cyrodiil and the Shivering Isles at will, and the expansion will be suitable for all level ranges (I guess this means leveled content), with the entrance to the isles located on an island in Niben bay, near Bravil. Ill close with this quote - "If you're still pursing your lips at the thought of playing Oblivion in a land filled with a pink night sky and trees that look lifted from an acid junkies sketchbook, ask yourself if you really wanted more of the same".

There's also a scan of the 2 page article, page 1 here and page 2 here!

Thanks Kencube!

Information about

Elder Scrolls IV: Shivering Isles

Developer: Bethesda Softworks

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Combat: Real-time
Play-time: 20-40 hours
Voice-acting: Full

Regions & platforms
· Homepage
· Platform: PC
· Released at 2007-03-25
· Publisher: Bethesda Softworks