Many moons ago, I picked up a used copy of The Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion at Blockbuster. In the past, their used games have been cheaper than anywhere else, and at that time Oblivion was selling at a price that I couldn’t refuse. The problem, of course, was that I simply didn’t have the time needed to dedicate myself to the game, and so it just sat on my shelf.
Then I lost my job, and suddenly I had almost nothing but free time to kill. Let me tell you, Oblivion is the greatest time suck I’ve experienced since I stopped playing World of Warcraft. The amount of content in this open world RPG is simply amazing. This thing is a lot like a single player MMO.
I really like Japanese RPGs, because they’re so story driven. I like Oblivion because it’s so easy to become consumed by the world. It’s not like in Final Fantasy, where if there’s a chest in a house somewhere, it’s contents are yours, because the contents of all chests are yours by virtue of you owning the game. In Oblivion, if you get caught taking something from someone else’s house, the game penalize you by either having the owner attack you, or by having a watchman fine or imprison you. In Final Fantasy, if it’s free, it’s yours. In Oblivion, sometimes you don’t even want to take the stuff you know you won’t get in trouble for, because the idea that someone else might need or want it has been drilled into you by the game’s mechanics, even though the only “other people” are all NPCs. That’s just an example. There are hundreds of other little things like that that make this game so immersive.
That being said, I think it’s time for me to move on to something else. I finished the main story, and going back to do other quest lines or starting over feels a lot like WOW grinding. That’s cool sometimes, but I’d like to think there are better things to do with my time. Learn how to juggle, for example…