Get Your Questions Ready!

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So we’ve let the journalists do the talking through their articles, but now we’d like to field some of your questions. That’s right, Todd and Co. are going to be willing to talk about more than Batman and their favorite color. If you’ve got something you’re dying to know about Fallout 3, take your suggestion to the forums here. If you want to send them directly to us via the blog, that’s fine too.

In addition to pulling together a list of questions that covers all the things people want to know about, we’ll keep an eye on other questions that get sent to us and pull in a developer every now and then to answer a few questions. You never know when a dev may stop by to answer a question or two from the mailbag, so send in your questions about Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, Star Trek Conquest, or whatever it is you want to know and we’ll get to work.

Interview with ‘Undernethe’ Modding Team

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A little more than a week ago, I was reading about Undernethe Prequel mod project in the works for Oblivion over at FileFront’s Oblivion Files site. The mod will open up a new underground quest featuring new NPCs, music, creatures, weapons and more.

The folks working on the project are currently seeking help from others, but in the meantime, I thought I’d check in to find out more about the project. I asked some questions for some of the guys working on the mod to find out more.

First, some introductions. Fire Legion is the project lead of the Undernethe mod, and works with all aspects of the mod, as well as promotion and team management. Mr.E is the loremaster, and leads the writing and quest departments. Sheogorath is the lead scripter and worldbuilder, and also works heavily in modelling and texturing.

For those unfamiliar with your mod, tell us what folks can expect with Undernethe?

Mr.E: The Undernethe is all about adding a grand scale to the land below Cyrodiil. We plan for there to be be caverns so large and intricate that you can’t help but get lost (and scared), civilizations with lore and quests so involved that you’d swear they were a part of The Elder Scrolls mythology, and items and creatures that will make dungeon delving as fun as possible.

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Are you the Oblivion Iron Man?

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Ash and I got to wondering after reading Oblivion fan Victor Hedenberg’s comment about playing Oblivion for 250 hours. We asked, “I wonder who has put the most time into playing Oblivion?”

I’d venture to say that someone’s gotten close to playing the game* for more than 1000 hours somewhere. Since I’m so curious about it, I think it’s time to run our blog’s first ever contest!! Let’s call it “The Oblivion Iron Man Contest.” The rules are as follows:

  • The contest is open to players of the PC, 360, and PS3 versions of the game.
  • Send unaltered photos showing your gameplay time (from the save menu) to bethblog@bethsoft.com. The winner selected by us will be required to send us his/her actual game save for verification purposes via e-mail, memory card, or memory stick. If for any reason we are unable to confirm the gameplay time, we’ll pick the next person in line. Winners who send a memory stick or memory card will receive the card back via mail.
  • Please send a photo of yourself that we can post for the blog announcement of the winner.
  • All e-mails must be received by midnight (U.S. EST), Sunday, August 26th (so start playing your game non-stop NOW!) The winner will be announced once we have confirmed the winning game save.
  • Any foul play detected will result in automatic disqualification.
  • All participants must be 18 or older to enter and verification may be required before the winner is announced. Any material sent shall be deemed non-proprietary.

So what does the Oblivion Iron Man win?

Well, Pete emailed from vacation and told me to send one of my trusty droids into his office to pull a signed copy of the game from his office…and not just any signed copy. This PC copy of Oblivion is signed by renowned actors, Terrence Stamp (Mankar Camoran) and Sean Bean (Martin Septim)!

*I’m sure some of the modders out there have probably spent at least that much time doing mods for the game, but we’re only accounting for gameplay time. That said, modders are welcome to enter.

Oblivion Fan Faction — ‘Oblivion Tales’

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Spotted some new fan fiction last night that I thought I’d point out. Over on his (and Ruzena’s) blog, Jeremy has put up what looks like the first of several works of fiction where he takes his in-game experiences in Oblivion and turns them into stories he calls ‘Oblivion Tales.’

The first entry recounts his efforts to assassinate the Countess of Anvil, Millona Umbranox (pic above grabbed from UESP). Here’s a snippit:

The birds chirping outside the window awaken me and I leave the warmth of my bed, slowly descending the stairs of the Inn. A slight nod is given to the owner of the Inn, before I step back outside. Short conversation is exchanged with the man outside, before I notice the Imperial Legion Guard coming across the bridge on horseback. Luck could not be any more on my side, this day. After saying my goodbyes to the man, I pull my shield and dart off into the woods.

Read the full entry here and check back to see what happens next in ‘Oblivion Tales.’

Strong Sales Worldwide

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Looking at Amazon sales for Europe, the US, and Japan for last week, it looks like The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion continues to be a favorite among gamers world wide. In Japan during its first week, it was the top selling Xbox 36o game.

Over in the Europe, Oblivion comes in at #5 on the Amazon’s UK sales Charts for 360 games, over a year after release.

And stateside, Oblivion on PS3 ranked #5 as well.

For all of Amazon’s sales rankings last week, check here

Share Your Wisdom

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Those interested in getting into the modding scene with Oblivion, I just noticed that The Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion Files has launched a new tutorial team for helping out. If you’re interested in becoming a tutor, check out this link:

Sounds like a cool opportunity. And remember, if you have stuff that you liked to contribute to the modding community, you can always visit other sites like our very Construction Set Wiki.

Fan Art Now on the Blog

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As you know, we’ve asked that you guys submit fan art for our blog. Over the weekend, I got some cool stuff from Elder Scrolls fan Raven Hall. These drawings are based on her interpretations of how the Daedra should look.

Above is her adaptation of Azura. Check out the Fan Art section on the right side to look at some of her other drawings.

Want your stuff in the Fan Art section? Just send an email with your JPEG files attached. We prefer to put up original designs, and keep in mind, we’re not going to be able to put up everyone’s art, but we’re always interested to see what you’ve come up with.

Folding@Home

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If you haven’t heard of Folding@Home, it’s a pretty cool and unique project. Set up by Stanford University, the project is a distributed computing project where people around the world can download software to create a supercomputer of sorts. The “folding” deals with research through folding proteins. Through this research, folks at Stanford hope to find solutions to diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, forms of cancer, and more.

So how does this relate to Bethesda or any of our games? Well, on Planet Elder Scrolls, and within our forums, The Elder Scrolls community has come together to create a team to help with folding projects (the more computers you have, the faster projects can get completed). If you’re interested in participating, you’ll want to join Team Elder Scrolls (ID #52286). Oh yeah, and if you’re using a PS3, you can help with this project too!

Domino Art Using the Construction Set

A while back before launching the blog, I asked Rob (our IT guy for the blog) about some issues I was having with posting YouTube videos. I was looking to post the Perlman intro from the original Fallout. When Rob finally got videos to embed on our blog, he replaced the Perlman video with this video. Even though the video has been out there a while, it’s still worth mentioning for those that haven’t seen it before.

Pretty funny use of the Construction Set if you have ask me. I especially like how the books speall out “LOL” near the beginning of the video. Secumfex, if you’re out there, I’d love to know how long this took. And if anyone has cool video similar to this, send them over!

It’s a Mod, Mod World

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With the poll question relating to Elder Scrolls mods, I thought I’d mention some notable mods I’ve come across this week.

The Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion Files have uploaded a new mod, Martigen’s Monster Mod 3.0. The mod offers plenty of new stuff to fans, including:

“Over 800M in 150+ brand new creatures and NPCs, 1900+ variant creatures and NPCs, unique encounters, advanced behaviour AI, advanced combat AI, tailored loot drops and more!”

Sounds like a really impressive mod. For more details on all the features of MMM 3.0 (and there’s plenty), visit here.

Another cool mod comes from Planet Elder Scrolls member Coleen. This mod adds the ability to cook food and brew drinks, and it even adds a farmer’s market to the game. As noted, the mod combines food items from the Salmo the Baker from Tarnsman and Ravida’s hungry scripts.

Thanks to Coleen for making this (and making me hungry)…LUNCH TIME!