The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion - Xbox360

Seen as the most anticipated Xbox360 release of the year by some, has the first role playing game for the Xbox360 what it takes to appease the Role Play Gaming fraternity? We find out.

Oblivion is the latest chapter in the epic and highly successful Elder Scrolls saga and this time comes on the Xbox360 or PC.

According to the games makers Bethesda, "Oblivion is the quintessential role-playing game for the next generation and another leap forward in gaming".

That's certainly true. The freeform game play is more akin to a first person shooter rather than the usual turn by turn gaming found in true Role Playing Games and as far as graphics are concerned the game hits the spot.

Everything from the characters you meet to the landscape you walk around has plenty of detail and lots of it. Heck, even the shadows look impressive.

Get past the graphics however and luckily for Take2 the games publishers the gameplay holds up. Purists will of course cry that the game has become too mainstream, however it also means that it has become a lot more accessible.

For starters you can spend hours just creating your character at the start, changing everything from race to weight and once this is done in game you can then develop further depending on how you fight, use magic and interact with others.

Like any RPG the aim of the game is exploration and anyone who likes randomly walking around asking the odd question to random strangers will feel right at home.

Along the way the game promises travels through vivid, likelike towns, dingy dungeons and lush, enchanting forests, and can expect to encounter 1000 non-player characters all speaking via voiced actors (including Patrick Stewart as the narrator) instead of simple text you've got to read.

At the heart of the game is the quest that you've got to complete along with multiple side stories similar to Microsof's dungeon siege and Lionhead's Fable.

Grumbles? You've got to save often, as dying forces you back to the beginning of the level with the knowledge that you've got to do the whole lot again - something that we found very frustrating.

It would have been nice to have seen a more frequent save system, but then you can't please everyone.

Verdict

Although this is a great RPG it won't be for everyone. Gamers expecting to hack and slash their way through trouble will be disappointed, but then to be fair Bethesda hasn't designed a game for those kind of people.

If you've ever had an inclination towards role play games and happen to own an Xbox or PC then this is certainly one to check out.