Oblivion release date 'within a couple of weeks'

I’ll point you here to my post on Planet Elder Scrolls with links to the podcast in question etc.

This is quoted from a poster at the official Bethsoft forums, who unfortunately seems to have had only a relatively passing aquaintance with the English language, but it’s readable for the most part.

I listened to the very interesting interview, and wrote down whatever I thought was new:

-new info:

– The cause of all the going-ons with Oblivion can be traced to a single bad guy.
– (confirmed) all dialogue is voiced
– You actually have to steal stuff and fence it to advance in the thieves guild!
– (confirmed) Weapons are poisonable.
– there are newspaper couriours
– The purpose of the RAI system is to make things seem natural; Not to make NPCs seem smart. “Things don’t seem like they’re exactly the same. That’s really the point.”
– There are actual weekdays in the game, like sunday.
– Essential, unkillable characters are flagged with a crown.
– NPCs can’t steal.
– There are 5 types of horse, vary based on speed, health. Horses can defend themselves, they might flee.
– Horses fasttravel with you and get transfered to other stables.
– (confirmed) No to-hit rolls. If you hit, you hit.
– A LOT more levellists for items
– All resolutions supported
– monsters respawns
– treasures respawn
– Basically, locations get reset over time.
– If NPC attacks player, and player is in city, then guards “lay down the justice.”
– GUARDS CAN NOT DETECT STOLEN GOODS. A guard will only bother to come get you at a certain level of bounty. If you get away, and have a small bounty on the head, they don’t really care about you. If you get arrested, and you have stolen items on you, they take em’ all. If they don’t arrest you, they CAN NOT TAKE GOODS FROM YOU.
– There are traveling merchants… Some NPCs go from town to town on occasion.
– Named characters don’t respawn. “Skingrad guard” will.
– The merchant skill is now gold-based instead of item-based.
– If high in the armor class it doesn’t effect spell effectiveness. So mages CAN wear heavy armor when they’re really good at it.
– Making your quest an “active quest” shows where to go with a map marker (if applicable.)
– Hand-to-hand has a chance to disarm at very high levels. You need basically 100.
– You can only customize the face.
– Expansions won’t be downloadable.
– If you kill a villager in front of other people, the villagers will react differently.
– All dungeons are combat-based.
– You can improve your skills just by watching somebody train.
– There are about 50 standard creature types.
“You are a couple of weeks from knowing the exact date it will be out. We have a date in mind. I am supremely confidant that it will come out that date.”
– Europe will be a couple days later release.
– TES V is not in the works but they’re absolutely going to make it.

Interesting stuff to say the least, though there’s not much in the way of new content the release date bit was a bit of a bombshell I thought.

That’s a couple of weeks from knowing the actual release date, not “it will be released in two weeks.”

All generally accurate - a few corrections/clarifications:

>>Hand-to-hand has a chance to disarm at very high levels. You need basically 100.

No. ALL weapon skills have a chance to disarm once you’ve reached level 50 (you have to do a special type of power attack).

>>You can only customize the face

Well, head (hair, etc. too). But there are a zillion options here - it is a very comprehensive customization setup (which puts most MMOs to shame).

>>there are newspaper couriours

Couriers? I don’t think so, but there are newspapers in the game, and they reflect relevant developments within the game.

>>Horses can defend themselves, they might flee

They’d only flee if you weren’t riding them.

>>Essential, unkillable characters are flagged with a crown

All characters involved in quests are unkillable until their quest plays out.

>>Expansions won’t be downloadable

There will, however, be downloadable MODs/additions to the game.

>>The merchant skill is now gold-based instead of item-based

Not sure what these means, and don’t think it is accurate. Merchants have different mercantile skill levels, and they also have different amounts of gold to buy items with from you (that gold amount does NOT diminish, so you don’t have to wait for it to replenish – they can buy an infinite amount of items costing no more than the amount of gold they have – for example, a merchant might have 800 gold, which means they can buy infinite amount of items from you for up to 800 each, but they can’t pay more than 800 for a single item. You can also “invest” in merchants to increase their gold pool if you have a high enough mercantile skill.

>>If you kill a villager in front of other people, the villagers will react differently.

Well, they’ll tag you as a criminal, and you’ll get a bounty. But it’s not true that they will react “in different ways”, if that’s what you were suggesting.

It will not be released in two weeks.

Yeah, I realise how that comes out badly. Will edit presently.

Couple more thoughts:

>>If high in the armor class it doesn’t effect spell effectiveness. So mages CAN wear heavy armor when they’re really good at it.

You have to have a 100 skill to not be encumbered by armor, however, so heavy armor isn’t really practical for mage charcters. Once your skill is over 75, your encumbrance is reduced 50%. There’s also no “medium armor” this time around - just heavy and light.

>Making your quest an “active quest” shows where to go with a map marker

In most cases. Some quests require you to work out where the quest goal is, however.

>If you get away, and have a small bounty on the head, they don’t really care about you.

True, but you have to be careful not to initiate conversations with guards, or they’ll arrest you even in those circumstances. You can escape from prison if you’re arrested, but it’s not easy (you get one lockpick to try) and your bounty goes up. If you escape, you can steal back your confiscated goods from the “evidence” chests in the jails.

Thanks for the clarifications Desslock; if you think it’s necessary I’ll edit your additions in.

I don’t think it’s necessary - good post. I was just adding to it.

Last one:

>The cause of all the going-ons with Oblivion can be traced to a single bad guy.

In general terms, yes, but things are a little more complicated than that suggests. Unlike in Morrowind, where there was just Dagoth, there is an additional character in Oblivion with his own agenda (in addition to the “big baddie”, who has been in the Elder Scrolls games before…).

I think it was referring to individual reactions; i.e the scenario someone mentioned where he killed a priest and one guy ran off to get a sword and some didn’t particularly care and some attacked on sight or whatever.

In regards to the merchant thing, are things more reasonably priced this time around? I got very pissed off in MW (as did everyone else) when we found a Daedric spear in a wreck somewhere and could only sell it for like 1500 (disregarding Creeper/mudcrab). I’m sure this has been asked before, sorry if it has.

And finally, is the plot more complex this time around? It seems to be, but in general terms?

Apologies if I’ve bombarded you with questions, not intended.

Merchants have more money (and you don’t have to do the buy/resell trick to keep them stocked with money, since they always can buy up to their max), but you still won’t be able to easily find merchants able to pay full value for stuff like Daedric weapons.

Money seemed like less of an issue, except for training – training is expensive.

Yes, many more big scripted “money scenes”, with lots of ties to Elder Scrolls Lore, and even thematic depth (the role of the “gods” of the setting, vs. the more activist Daedra).

Unkillable? oh that kinda sucks. I loved being able to wipe out whoever I wanted too. I liked the “You just killed someone from the main quest blah blah” from MW.

Will they indicate that an item is worth more than they can afford, at least? That would be a nice feature…

That would be even better if the truthfulness of their estimation on its value were tied to how much they like you.

That is the best news in this thread. Morrowind was way too easy to ruin as a an engaging game. Raid one daedra shrine, sell the loot, spend gold on training to reach high teens or more in level, and the game was no longer a challenge.

You know, it all sounds really could, but I couldn’t help thinking that this part:

– (confirmed) all dialogue is voiced

Would mean computerized voice renditions which are exactly the same for every character… heh.

On the upside, it most likely means completely unique dialogue per character. I hope it doesn’t mean hearing the same voice actor say the same thing on twenty different characters though. That would suck. A lot.

You can see the item’s true value, yes. And to answer the follow up question, I believe that value IS based upon their opinion of you, so you’ll get a higher value from NPCs who have a higher disposition to you.

Training is also very limited in Oblivion – you can only train 5 skill points (total, across all skills) per level. So no matter how much money you have, you can’t quickly bump up your skills.

Well, there are 1400 NPCs, so voice actors obviously provide the voice for more than one character – it’s noticeable, but there’s enough variation that I didn’t find it annoying. Frankly, I tend to skip through the dialogue because it’s a lot quicker to read it than to listen to it. Voice-acting quality was good though.

That’s kind of unfortunate. I like being able to have character freedom, and that sounds really limiting.

That’s somewhat mitigated by the fact that you CAN kill them once their quest plays out, and every character except for one can die (or be saved) during quests. I was actually surprised that someone who was initially invulnerable, but then became killable during the course of a subsequent quest – actually played a big role in many subsequent quests if you managed to keep him alive. You would have lost the help of that character on those quests if you didn’t keep him alive earlier on, so your actions can still have a significant impact.