How to start Shivering Isles and other assorted troubleshooting tips

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Hi! Did you happen to get Shivering Isles as a present for the holidays? Feeling lost, confused, can’t find your way? We’re here to help. I’m going to walk through all the different versions so just find the one you have below. Spoiler alert after the break.

How do I start Shivering Isles?

Wait 1 day. Afterwards, you will get a journal titled A Door in Niben Bay. You can do this with any save, any character. If you start a new character, you will need to leave the character gen dungeon first before waiting a day.

Not seeing the journal? Check out the troubleshooting tips below. If you are unable to resolve your issue, visit our Hardware and Software Forums or our technical support pages.

PC Specific Issues

Direct2Drive and Shivering Isles
If you install a Retail copy of Shivering Isles over Direct2Drive Oblivion, the game will require a retail Oblivion disk to run. To remedy this situation you will need to get the “Oblivion Shivering Isles CD Compatibility Fix” from Direct2Drive. It is available at http://www.direct2drive.com/patches/. Direct2Drive also sells the North American release of Shivering Isles, which is compatible with both the Retail and Direct2Drive versions of the game.

Content will not enable, or multiple assets are missing
We are aware that some people are having compatibility issues with third party, or user created mods and Shivering Isles. Please note that we cannot officially support any user-made mods for Oblivion, however we do want people to be able to enjoy their games. Here are some troubleshooting steps that seem to be fairly effective in eliminating some of the most common issues.

If you have been playing with mods installed please try these steps to eliminate any problems caused by the mods.

  • Backup all save files located in /My Documents/My Games/Oblivion/Saves/ to a separate folder.
  • Backup, or have some method ready for reinstallation of any third party or user created mods that you have.
  • Uninstall Oblivion
  • Delete any folders left behind such as C:\Program Files\Bethesda Softworks\Oblivion, and My Documents\My Games\Oblivion
  • Reboot your computer
  • Reinstall Oblivion (there is no need to install patch 1.1 or 1.2 at this point)
  • Install Shivering Isles
  • Install the Shivering Isles 1.2.0416 Patch from here
  • Copy your old saves into /My Documents/My Games/Oblivion/Saves/
  • Load Oblivion
  • Load an old save file and ensure that the save file load properly.
  • Wait 24 to 48 hours in-game then fast travel to a location near the Niben Bay, just east of Bravil. You should get a quest notification, or at least be able to see the island when looking due east from the Bravil Stables.

If you have had success with the steps above, it may be a good idea to install any third party or user created mods that you have, one at a time, or in small groups, checking to make sure that you have not lost functionality between each install.

Missing Dialogue or “I Have No Greeting”
The portal between the Cyrodiil and the Shivering Isles is used to set a number of variables within the game. Using third party mods, or console commands, that bypass this portal or move you between the two realms instantly will likely lead to missing dialogue, along with a host of other unforeseen issues.

Vista Compatibility
It should be noted that Oblivion and the Shivering Isles expansion are not officially supported on Windows Vista. Most attempts to run Oblivion and Shivering Isles on Vista are problem free. However, some users have reported that they have had success solving an issue in which the Shivering Isles content is not enabling correctly in game by attempting the following:

  • Fresh Installation of Oblivion and Shivering Isles
  • Running Oblivion in Windows XP SP2 Compatibility Mode
  • Running Oblivion as Administrator
  • Disabling Visual Themes and Desktop Composition

For more information, the original thread can be found here.

Xbox 360 Issues

Content doesn’t enable, or assets are missing
Some users are having issues with the Shivering Isles content enabling properly. Please note that Shivering Isles requires the latest Oblivion Title Update from Xbox Live, as mentioned above. If you are experiencing an issue with a hang on the “Loading Extra Content” message for 360 or the content isn’t enabling, it is likely because you do not have the 1.2.1 update. You can verify that you have the latest Title Update with the following steps:

  • At the Main Menu, press Start, and select Options
  • Select Video
  • Observe the bottom left corner of the Video Options screen, if it says Version 1.2.1, you have the latest Oblivion Title Update, otherwise you do not.

If you do not have the latest Title Update, you can get it 3 ways.

  1. You can either sign on to Xbox Live and download it before playing Shivering Isles.
  2. If you own Oblivion Game of the Year, insert disc 2 and select Yes when the disc asks to install the update. Disc 2 requires you to install the title update first before allowing you to install Shivering Isles or Knights of the Nine.
  3. If you own Shivering Isles standalone disc, insert the Shivering Isles disc and select Yes when the disc asks to install the update.

If you have the latest Title Update and you are still having issues, you might be having problems with Xbox Live… see http://support.microsoft.com/kb/911198/en-us

If you have the latest Title Update and it still isn’t working, there are a few things you can try to fix the problem yourself:

You can verify whether or not the content has enabled by taking any character and Fast Travelling to the Bay Roan Stables just outside of Bravil, and swimming almost straight eastward across the Niben Bay… if the content has enabled properly, you should see an island with a large doorway somewhere near the center of the Bay (just above the ‘L’ in Bravil, on the world map).

You may have a dirty disc… you can try to clean it with the steps mentioned here http://support.microsoft.com/kb/816785/en-us depending on the scope of your problem.

It may help to redownload the latest Oblivion Title Update from Xbox Live — if you are not receiving a prompt to download a Title Update when you start Oblivion and are logged on to Live, try the following:

  • At the Main Menu, press Start, and select Options
  • Select Video
  • Observe the bottom left corner of the Video Options pane, if it says Version 1.1, 1.2 or nothing at all, you do not have the latest update and may need to troubleshoot your Xbox Live connection
  • If it says Version 1.2.1, or you know your Live connection is working from the step above, you may want to clear existing game updates (please note the steps below will remove ALL game updates currently on your system, and that if you have downloaded any auto-updates for any other games, they will need to be downloaded again when you play them)
  • Go to the Xbox Dashboard, select the System blade, and select Memory
  • Highlight the Hard Drive symbol, and press the Y Button
  • Press the following buttons in order… X, X, Left Bumper, Right Bumper, X, X
  • A notification dialogue will ask for confirmation that you want to perform maintenance on your Xbox 360 Storage Devices, select Yes
  • After the maintenance is completed, restart Oblivion while connected to Xbox Live and you should be prompted to download an automatic game update… accept this update
  • Verify at this point that the game should be working properly, if the update download succeded

It may also help to redownload the Shivering Isles content from Xbox Live. You can do this by doing the following:

  • Go to your Xbox Dashboard, select the System blade, and select Memory
  • Select the Hard Drive, or wherever Shivering Isles is stored
  • Select Games
  • Select Oblivion
  • Select “Shivering Isles, Downloaded Content”
  • Select “Delete”
  • And finally redownload Shivering Isles as you did initially

You can also attempt to clear the Xbox’s game cache by holding the ‘A’ button as the game boots. Press and hold ‘A’ as soon as you turn the console on.

Playstation 3 Issues

Content doesn’t enable, or assets are missing when I download Shivering Isles from PSN
Some users are having issues with the Shivering Isles content enabling properly. Make sure you run the Shivering Isles package after downloading it from the Playstation store. When you first run Oblivion, you should then see an install bar appear as Shivering Isles is installed to the Oblivion game data folders. The install only occurs the first time. Once Oblivion starts, you can continue with any save or start a new character.

Is the NTSC version of the Shivering Isles standalone disc compatible with the PAL version of Oblivion?
No. For PAL markets, Shivering Isles is available on the PAL version of Oblivion Game of the Year (all languages) and will be available on PSN soon.

I cannot locate the Shivering Isles within the US PlayStation Store.
Here’s some simple steps to follow:

  1. Log into PSN
  2. Click on the tab that says “View All”
  3. Click on the box says “Browse by Title: D-E). “E” as in “Elder Scrolls”
  4. There are only two choices, the Oblivion trailer and Shivering Isles.
  5. Pay for the expansion, let it download…

General Issues

Character has trouble sitting
If your character is having trouble sitting to speak with specific NPCs which require it, and you have played Knights of the Nine, try sitting and waiting for a few moments (10-15 seconds) and speaking with the NPC after the camera view shifts. It will appear as if your character is still standing but this may resolve the issue. The same delay will likely occur when you try to ‘get up’ again.

Reader Comments

  1. Hi, I have Oblivion and I beat all of the main quests, and I recently purchased the Shivering Isles Expansion for PC. My computer is an XPS 1530 with Vista and I know about the problems of compatibility. The weird thing is, Shivering Isles lets me play it for 1 day and then 1 day afterwards, when I walk around, it just crashes and tells me Oblivion has stopped working. I know about the game breaking bug, but that only happens after about 50 hours in Shivering Isles and I’ve only played for 1 day. Besides that, I updated the Shivering Isles to v. 1.2.416 to try to fix the gamebreaking bug and it doesn’t work. I’ve tried running it as Administrator and as XP Service Pack 2 Compatibility and it still crashes. But it’s not just like a part of the Shivering Isles doesn’t work, because it lets me play for that 1st day that I’ve installed SI and if I uninstall it and reinstall it, it’ll let me play for 1 more day before crashing when I move or open the journal/fast travel. This happens whether I’m in Oblivion of Shivering Isles. Please help.

  2. Nothing works for me, i have tried to wait for several weeks now and nothing happens, not even knights of the nine works. and i have re-installed several times.And in the video options screen is no game version. and me and my brother have updated the elder scrolls iv: oblivion.

  3. I m haveing the same problem as everyone else> It wont let me install SI? It only installs NoN. yes my clock is right. PLZ HELP !!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. hi. im having trouble figuring out how to get into the shivering isles.i know i have to wait a certian time limit but here is my thing. I have the GOTY edition for my pc, i have been playing the crap out of it and i have finished closeing the gates. i have done most of the othere quests for the guilds and i was wondering when the shivering isles would come into being? Is there a certian quest i havent gotten to yet or what. Please help me.

  5. Um, this is a very weird question, but I’ve been playing GOTY shivering isles for a while and its been working fine, but now im on the quest where you activate the alter with Thadon’s Blood and after I do that and talk to Sheogorath, Syl is supposed to come in, but instead she appears and then collapses dead while her voiceover plays, and after Sheogorath finishes talking, i just stand there in cutscene mode and wait while nothing happens. I have tried restarting my game, saving, loading, trying it again, but nothing works. Any suggestions?

  6. Hi, I have installed Shivering Isles, and I pretty much know what happened, but I am looking for a way to fix it.

    I recently deleted my Oblivion Game Data to fix a previous problem, and when I loaded my last save game, the doorway to Shivering Isles was missing and all of my SI guest items were gone (along with other quest-essential items). So I started to panic. I ended up re-downloading SI and then installed it again so I could play it. Although my keys to Mania and Dementia were gone, I could still go through the gates. But, none of my SI quests were in my journal (even though when I talked to Sheogorath, he spoke as if he had already given me the essentials I need. Basically, he acted normal. Haskill as well. I was the only one confused and lost) even when I got back to SI, and now I cannot complete a quest because an essential item no longer exists. (The Attenuator, of Judgment; I don’t have it, Sheo doesn’t have it…It’s just gone. I dare not tell him…he’ll kill me.)

    So my question is this:

    How do I restart the entire Shivering Isles expansion? I am pretty sure I can’t get the quest items back, so restarting is my only option. Thankfully I didn’t get very far and Ill be happy to have my Skinned Hound back anyway. =)

    Thanks in advance.

  7. I got the game of the year edition, i downloaded both disks which include all the content. And then i go to the options, make all the boxes blank, including the knights of the nine, shivering isles, and oblivion.esp files, they do not have xs over them, and then i go to play the game, head over to shivering isles and i find a ton of freaking question marks flying in the air… any suggestions on what in the world to do or does anyone know what is wrong?

  8. We just bought Oblivion GOTY edition. We put in disk 2, it says we need to install updates. Click yes, says updating but when finished, it does not show under options/video on the video screen (version 1.2.1) like in the youtube installation. We have tried to install numerous times. So Shivering isles does not show up either. Is the disk faulty? Do I need to return for a new set of disks? We don’t have xbox live.

  9. i have the new xbox experience but dont have xbox live and i installed the 2nd disc and the update but when i check the version in video options it doesnt say ver. 1.2.1 or anything else ive cleared the cache and deleted and reinstallled the game about 5 times but stil nothing

  10. You said that Shivering Isles would be released on PSN Europe over 2 years ago and still no sign of it, as there is no Elder Scrolls 5 planned, please release the expansion pack to the EU store so we can play it!!!

  11. i have had the same problems with Oblivion GOTY content not showing up om 360. Tried all the stuff that has been posted here. on 3/8/10…finally got it to work..here is how…i Hooked up into xbox live…it said I must have system update…i did…put GOTY disk in…still not enabled…i went to log into xbox live and i was prompted for a game update…i did…checked video setting and the version 1.2.1 was finally in lh cornor…loaded a game and viola…there it all was…so keep disk in log into xbox live…and it will prompt ypi for a game update…it is not a system update but a game update

  12. yea..i had the same problem as fraya, after about a month of playing the main oblivion missions i figured out that disk two was the si and non expansion pack, but after i installed si and non i couldnt duplicate any items so i herd that you can clear your system cach and undo the update to copy items again. after i got a S*** load of money i reinstalled si and non and all si stuff is gone and it wont let me do missions. and ideas?

  13. Hey Im a very big fan of oblivion fallout blah blah, i play it on the 360. I broke my old 360, which had all updates, some addons (wizards tower etc) and I got a new 360. I redownloaded the patch, which works fine. I want to know if I can play the addons offline and on another user that doesnt have xbox live?

  14. i live in england and i have bought a canadian (french) copy and every time i go to play it, it tells me to insert my original oblivion disc, i do so and it doesn’t load. i have also got 2 utility saves for oblivion and i have waited five days in game and no quest message. can any one please help? for ps3

  15. ive done all the stuff this website tells me to do… im thinking of transferring a file already in the shivering isles from my uncles computer bcuz my GOTy edition isnt working… all these publishers, microsoft, betheseda and any1else who works on this, fix it, people r returning ur game as if it were their job

  16. Hey,

    I bought Oblivion : GOTY Edition, and I bought XBox just so I can play Oblivion, Because my PS3 Broke Down but I don’t want another PS3, and wanted to try XBox, so I got XBox 360 ELITE. I cannot connect to LIVE, because I have no router or modem. However, When I waited 24-48 Hours in-game for Shivering Isles Journal to pop-up, nothing showed up. I even went to look for the Island by Bravil, but nothing. Somebody please help me find out how I can play Shivering Isles/Knights Of The Nine without XBOX LIVE? And if you can’t I’ll try my hardest to search for a modem/router just to play Oblivion . Thanks,

    Chris LaPoint , Executive Producer of “BORDERLANDS”

  17. It seems I’m having the same issue as everyone else. I recently bought the two-disc, retail version of Oblivion: GotY Edition for the xBox 360 (I don’t have xBox Live). I inserted disc 2, selected “Yes” when asked to install an update, and installed both Shivering Isles and Knights of the Nine. In the “Memory” menu of the xBox’s system settings, I see both are installed (on my 60gig hard drive, currently at about 49gigs of free space). Upon inserting disc 1 and beginning to play, it says “Loading extra content” for 1-2 seconds. Everything seems to be in order.

    However, in-game, after waiting 24 hours, no quest for either SI or KotN appears. Waiting longer doesn’t work, and in the main menu, under options//video, I don’t see anything telling me I have version 1.2.1, or any other version. I’ve tried reinstalling multiple times, however, the problem persists.

    Any suggestions/solutions would be welcome, please realize though that I do NOT have xBox Live.

    -JR

  18. Has there ever been an actual fix for Shivering Isles not showing up on the PS3? I’ve contacted this tech04@bethsoft.com and tried multiple fixes that I found on the net. I’m getting really frustrated.

  19. Hello, I’ve recently bought Oblivion: Game of the Year edition, and am having trouble with it. I’ve installed disc two before even touching the game itself. During the game, neither Knights of the Nine, nor the Shivering Isles are available. There is no way for me to access Xbox Live as I live out in the country and have to go in town to access internet. Is there a way for me to fix this problem otherwise?

  20. I bought my game of the year edition.When I waited a day after I was out of the dungeon and even started a new profile but the journal entry to shivering isles is not appearing, but the knights of nine is working can you please help, get back to me.

  21. i had all ready started shivering isles and started a quest in it but 1 month later it said i had to go check the place again and when i did it said iam not alowed yet hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeelllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllpppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee ppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppplllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  22. I have the ps3 Goty i have finished knights of the nine nd i have waited weeks in game but the journal wont come into my invontory! and there is no island! PLZ HELP

  23. i live in brazil, and we don’t have xbox live here, but i have the disc of shivering isles and the oblivion disk, but it says i need some update, the door to shivering isles jus’t don’t work, it’s so frustrating spending money and no playing the game.
    and prior to this the elder scrolls series used to be my favorite games, and i know that if i buy the GOTY edition i will have the shivering isles, but it won’t give my money back and is so hard to find around here

  24. i live in brazil, here we don’t have xbox live yet, i have the xbox 360 oblivion disk, and the xbox 360 shivering isles disk, but the shivering isles just don’t work, it install, but that damn door never appears.
    i’m really frustrated with you bethesda guys, even because here in brazil the games are so much expensive because of all the taxes, and i don’t wanna spend another mount of money buying the GOTY version cause i’m already spent it buying the damn shivering isles disk.

  25. on ps3 i was duplicating items i caused a lock up it told me game corrupted and to delete it it then rebooted i went and deleted the autosave and went back in now the house i was next to the textures on it are jumpy its driving me nuts how do i fix it or is the corruption still on it?i just dont want to put several more hours in until i fix it to find out its corrupted still later please help???

  26. after entering the shivering isles on my newest save game, entering a place called xedillian and saving my game. I found that when i rebooted the next day the save game and the auto save in xedillian DONOT load. windows just gives me a “oblivion has stopped working” message and closes the program. I also noted that other saves outside of the shivering isles area are working just fine. my conclusion was that it was an issue with the isles. I put much time into the character that i cannot load now and there is no prior save of him only the one in the isles that will no longer load for me. I am not receiving a message telling me the save is corrupt or anything so I am hoping there is a fix that will allow me to at the very least get my character out of the isles. its also worth noting that for all intents the shivering isles content seemed to work fine for the couple hours i played it before saving and closing the game… very puzzling. thanks in advance for any help that can be provided

  27. i have the shivering isles and on the mission when u become a duke or duchess i chose the duke for mania and i cant sit on my throne for mania it says you cannot sit on owned furniture please help. this is for the xbox 360

  28. I recently purchased the Oblivion Game of the Year edition, and even after installing the second disk, the Shivering Isles are refusing to appear, no matter how long I rest, yet Frostrag Spire and Smugglers’ Den are available. There’s not even the island in Niben Bay. I even downloaded the disk multiple times and cleaned it.

  29. look, i’ve been a loyal fan of tes since daggerfall, but i am severely losing my respect for it. The way you have shown us the standalone makes it look like it’s intended for non live players, and if the patch not working is a glitch, i would understand. but it is the fact that, despite the size of the glitch, it has gone unfixed for so long and the fact that you seem unwilling or unable to provide a solution. As i said, i am a loyal player, but the fact that you are ignoring your fans disgusts me, and if this situation persists, i daresay i will probably move on to two worlds or world of warcraft before long. Please, i wanted SI for months, and this glitch really annoyed me, so please listen to your fans and FIX IT!!!!! and if it was intended to need live, i think you should have shown this and considered the point of it considering it’s available on the marketplace

  30. Same issue as a lot of others. Bought the GOTY edition of Oblivion, followed the install directions and… nothing. No expansions.

    Can we send the game back to Bethesda and get a replacement disk or something? I shouldn’t have to get X-Box Live just to play the expansions.

  31. Well I have the 360 same issues. I folled the instructions and all and it still won’t load the expansions. I don’t have xbox live but I noticed that the expansions are created on 8/16/2007 7:51pm even though I have today’s date, I dont know of it has anything to do with it but I would appreciate some help.

  32. I installed both Knights of the nine, and Shivering isles to my xbox 360 hardrive, the strange door at Niben bay has appeared and i have the quest, but when i try to swim to the island the game freezes, i thought it was my disc, so i tried a friends, same problem, i finally bought another brand new disc, but the problem is still there, is there a way around this, do i have to swim to the island is there anything i can do ?

  33. Give it guys. Bethesda doesn’t even care anymore and won’t even support any of you with this erroneous software that they released. Best just to avoid their products from now on.

  34. Hey I also had a problem with my Xbox 360 goty edition but I found that when I borrowed my friends original oblivion, not goty, it seemed to finally allow me to load the expansions from the second goty disc. I think that some of the first discs of the goty edition is flawed and it will not play the expansions. Im not certain that this is the reason nor do I know That it will work with everyone but it worked for me. And do not switch back to the first disc when You start playing the game.

  35. I the Game of the year edition, it asks if i would like to update, I click yes, then it updates and seems to install just fine. But when I go to options then video i does not say 1.2.1, and the two exp dont work … what the hell??

  36. iv installed it. but when i play the game, nothings changed. in my xbox memory, it says its there, but that dosnt make a difference. and people tell me i need live. but it dosnt say i need it anywhere on the box. im kinda really mad