Morrowind: Ten years later and it's still an amazing game

I’ve just installed Morrowind on my Steam Deck, and OpenMW to help bring the engine to a slightly more modern state- you can get it via the Discover thing on the Deck Desktop. It plays pretty smooth so far with all the shadows/shaders/etc turned on, but I’m still Vanilla otherwise. Now over the next few days I fall down the rabbit hole of installing mods. Wish me luck.

Still the most immersive RPG I’ve ever played. I think I’ll install it again as well.

I dearly, dearly love Skyrim. And in many ways it’s a better game. BUT…

Morrowind was one of the most…impactful games I’ve ever played, in terms of how I view games. I have so, so many fond memories of it, and it just did so many things I’d never seen before. I don’t really do mods much, but I often consider slapping some mods on it to make it a little prettier and running through it again.

It’s so easy to break, but so much of it was just so, so good.

Even without fully voiced dialogue, terrible character models (even in 2002), crappy combat, and those damn cliff racers, Morrowind is the most immersive game I’ve ever played.

Everytime I have to walk in the rain on overcast days that theme song plays in my head.

Definitely helps that it was something special at the time, but I believe even now it still has a magic that the sequels don’t. Part of me wonders if the graphics of that era helped contribute to a place that was detailed enough to really feel present in, but also lacked enough detail that it gave a sense of kind of desolate isolation. Thinking about the locations kind of takes me back to the same feeling I got from Darkshore when WoW launched.

Morrowind is my favorite Elder Scrolls. The first copy I had was a game of the year 2003 Xbox edition that kept skipping every so often, in practice slowing down the gameplay to 1/10 what it should have been. I pored over that physical map like Bilbo Baggins in the animated Hobbit (I wonder where it is today). I played it for hours and hours anyway before finally a clean copy.

My brother figured out how to build this insanely OP character using Ash Yams or something (with a little help from the internet as I recall). The Tombs, man, the Tombs! It had such a consistent method of environmental heroic storytelling. It was so real. Anyway, my brother finally beat the game; I never did (although I kept making new characters). I think I got lost in one of the southern cities; there was just too much going on. That Redoran town that was inside of a crab shell! The mage city that you had to levitate to get to! That random incident where the guy just falls out of the sky (lol)! The Silt Striders and the guilds!

It was an awesome game, one of my favorites of all time.

Oh yeah, I was floored when I walked in on my brother’s game and he was just chatting it up with Vivec.


The physical map made the game seem so much larger than it actually was, so travel times weren’t really an issue for me: it was more the experience of ‘oh, I’ve been walking for a while, I must have gone far’ when digitally speaking it’s but a stone’s throw. My point is, the developers focused on the experience (and yes, the combat is annoying, Ridge Racers especially - the rest of the game is just so awesome I hardly notice it).

I also like the Silt Striders because they give you a cut to black point A to point B sensation of having traveled a long way. The first time I played, whatever the $&^% that town on the river is called seemed immeasurably far from Seyda Neen. Because you don’t just have this overworld fast travel option, there are a ton of cool places you have to hoof it to get to (although the Silt Striders take you to most of the important zones, I think). It just works. Finally filling in a mental map of the digital dark spaces that coincide with the physical map’s rendering was also an experience.

I think it’s because the Dunmer/Morrowind setting was so unique. It felt like some ancient, alien civilization thanks to the incredible building/town design.

The sequels were more of the standard European medieval-influenced fantasy setting.

Anyone familiar with modding ompenmw (on linux/Steam Deck) that can help me out? This thing is being a pain in the ass.

I’ve got a couple simple mods to test- Better Heads, signpost replacer, just so I can load into the game quickly to see if they’re working. I’m pretty sure I’m following the instructions on Modding-OpenMW correctly-

  • download the mod, extract to Home/deck/games/etc.
  • copy that folder path in the file explorer
  • open openmw.cfg, add a line data=“(paste path from above)”
  • save file

Nothing happens. I have a test data file, and I’m pretty sure it’s the one I’m working on since I turned off the Tribunal and Bloodmoon .esm files in it, and they aren’t showing up at the end of the config file when I edit it. I load up the game and the signs/heads aren’t replaced, though. I’m stumped.

I wish the journal was more manageable on XSX. I forget things easily and paging through that thing is such a best with a controller. I’d love to play it for real instead if getting frustrated after an hour or two.

I’ve been fooling around with mods again and came across this - Star Wars full conversion mod.

Looks very well done

Balmora (I remembered) does sort of look like Mos Eisley.

This is the most exciting thing happening with MW at the moment - at this rate the entire game will be fully voiced by the end of this year.

The mods this community are coming out with are just insane.

Thanks for posting these! Morrowind will always have a special place in my heart even if it’s a kinda sorta bad game :P

I’ve started messing around with the construction set to make my own mods now lol.

This mod is basically Siofra River from Elden Ring.

Or you know Skyrim’s Blackreach, or Ultima’s Underworld, or D&D’s Underdark, or The Lord of the Ring’s Moria…

Morrowind fishing

I loved the setting. It felt alien, and the scattered Imperial colonialism just added to that.

Then add the world full of unreliable narrators and heaps of mystery, and a main plot that directly forces you to engage with history and legend as an adventuring historian, exploring dangerous places to find out the real truth instead of the propaganda…

Yeah, never played a game that was so immersive.