Before I begin this entry, I feel I really should make note of something that Oblivion does right that nearly every other game doesn’t, and which I complain about incessantly: you can pause at any point. You can pause during a conversation, during a cutscene … whenever. Thank you, Oblivion!
While I was having fun with Oblivion, I have to say that in the beginning it didn’t “grab” me. I didn’t feel the need to come back to it as soon as possible to find out what happened next in a particular quest, or even the main story.
That all changed when I started the Dark Brotherhood questline. It was a story I could become invested in, and which I wanted to follow to the very end. I’m not completely sure why it grabbed me the way it did, but part of it was that the quests were far more varied than the “go kill X things” style. I especially enjoyed one mission where I was locked in a house with five others and had to kill them all without the others realising it was me. The scripting (both the game scripts and the story scripts) were well done, especially when there were just three of us left. The other two became completely paranoid and, of course, suspected me. Working out how to kill them both when they wouldn’t separate was rather fun and frustrating (in the fun kind of way).
I also liked the twist in the plotline, which I won’t reveal here, even though we’ve probably passed some kind of Statute of Limitations on spoilers.
From that questline, I became hooked on the Thieves Guild questline. I’d already started it, but became bogged down when I needed a higher Speechcraft to progress. Somehow, though, becoming involved in the Dark Brotherhood quests gave me the momentum to get involved in the Thieves Guild quests – and then the game had me as hooked as in Skyrim.
Right now, unfortunately, I’m on a downer as the Fighter’s Guild quests are more of the “go explore dungeon and kill things” style quests. Though I have to say the very first quest was brilliant and varied – it’s a pity that it was the best one so far. Maybe they’ll pick up further along, but right now I’m beginning to slog through them, just to get them done. I’m also curious to see if I’ll end up running the Fighter’s Guild, since you seem to end up running every other faction (Dark Brotherhood, Thieves Guild, Council of Mages …).