Bethesda has announced that it will release Shivering Isles, the expansion pack to Elder Scrolls IV, for the PS3 through retail. The standalone disc will allow gamers the chance to experience the expansion of the award-winning RPG.
This retail release follows the October release of the Game of the Year edition of Elder Scrolls IV for the PS3, which includes the Shivering Isles pack. The expansion offers more than 30 hours of new gameplay, allowing players to explore an entirely new plane of Oblivion.
Shivering Isles will hit PS3 on November 20.
Bethesda announced that the final piece of downloadable content for The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion will be released today, and will be free to download for all players for one week. Dubbed Fighter’s Guild, the DLC will let players own the Battlehorn Castle (pictured), replete with dining hall, training room and a private shrine.
The company also mentioned that while the PS3 won’t receive this piece of downloadable content, it did note that some content is coming to the console, though the medium was not defined. More news is expected soon.
Hoping to cater to more gamers, Bethesda sent out a press release announcing their intentions of releasing the retail disc of Shivering Isles for the Xbox 360. Gamers will be able to play the award-winning expansion to Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion without having to access Xbox Live. It will also include the downloadable content, Knights of the Nine.
With more than 30 hours of new gameplay, Shivering Isles allows you to explore an entirely new plane of Oblivion – the realm of Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of Madness. Shivering Isles features a bizarre landscape split between the two sides – Mania and Dementia -filled with vast, twisting dungeons mirroring the roots of the trees they are buried within. Sheogorath himself looks to you to be his champion and defend his realm and its inhabitants from destruction as you discover all new items, ingredients, spells, and much more.
Knights of the Nine features an all-new faction and quests for noble characters and answers many of the questions surrounding the Ayleid ruins found throughout Oblivion. Players can join a new faction and found their own order of holy knights – leading them into battle against a sorcerer-king and his demonic minions while exploring massive dungeons and searching for legendary relics – the holy armor and weapons of the Divine Crusader.
The Shivering Isles disc will be available in stores this October.
CVG reports that the February 2007 issue of PC Zone reveals the first details on Shivering Isles, the first expansion pack for Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Snipping from the magazine article, the add-on will see 30-plus hours of gameplay, new quests, monsters, expanded free-form gameplay and a new land “that you can watch change according to your vital life-or-death decisions.”
Setting the scene, it’s explained that an ominous-looking gate has opened in Nibben Bay, the portal leading to a torn realm – the Shivering Isles – ruled by Sheogorath, the god of madness and dementia. Apparently, adventurers will meet the god and “plough through his trials”, but it’s additionally hinted that ultimately we may well be usurping the deity. A ETA of Q2 2007 has been given.
The issue, which is already available, has first screenshots and further information on the expansion.
Bethesda’s Christmas gift to its fans is the Mehrunes’ Razor content pack for the Xbox 360 version of Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Between December 22 and December 31, Xbox Live users will be able to download the pack for free, adding a new quest and other items to the game. The pack will go back to its original price – 250 points – on January 1, 2007.
Confused about the Knights of the Nine expansion for Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion? An official clarification from Pete Hines from Bethesda Softworks has cleared up the perplexity of obtaining the expansion for those who have already bought the DLC it contains.
First, I wanted to clarify a couple things on Knights of the Nine. The retail version of Knights of the Nine is a collection (for PC) that includes Knights of the Nine plus all the other DLC released to date. That’s why it’s $19.99. If you want just Knights of the Nine for PC, you can download it for $9.99 and get just that DLC without the rest of it. Same on 360…800 points for just Knights of the Nine. A retail version for 360 isn’t technically feasible at this time. If/when it becomes a possibility we’ll let folks know; it’s certainly something we’d like to offer. Release date for Knights of the Nine is 11/21 for the retail version as well as the 360 version on Xbox Live. It will be available to download for PC (from http://www.obliviondownloads.com) on 12/4.
It also contained word that the PS3 version of Oblivion has been delayed until Q1 2007.
To set it straight that it does not favor any particular platform, Bethesda has announced plans to make its new Knights of the Nine content for Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion available for the PC and Xbox 360. The content was previously announced to be in the PS3 version set for release next month with the console’s launch.
The content will be available through Xbox Live Marketplace for X360 and OblivionDownloads.com for PC on November 21. It will also be available as a retail box for PC as a compilation that will include all the other Oblivion downloadable content released till date.
Knights of the Nine introduces an all-new faction dubbed Holy Knights, as well as new quests and more.
Bethesda has confirmed this 1Up report, which states that Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion will be a launch title for the PS3 and that the November issue of OPSM contains the first preview of the title. In addition to the PS3 version, Elder Scrolls Travels: Oblivion for the PSP was also revealed; it’s due for release in Spring 2007 in North America and Europe.
Set to release alongside the PS3 console this November, and March 2007 in Europe (by Ubi), the game will essentially be the same as the one released last year on PC and Xbox 360. However, it will introduce a new faction: “Knights of the Nine” which is described by the developers as “the good Dark Brotherhood.”
“Oblivion has these really good character archetypes for evil,” says executive producer Todd Howard. “It has the Dark Brotherhood: You get your outfit, you feel like an assassin, you feel like an evil guy, [and] you role-play like an evil guy. We [didn’t] have the opposite end of that. There [was] very little reward for being a goody two-shoes.”
Looking forward to it!
New premium downloadable content for Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion can be found on its website for just $1.89. Titled “Thieves Den”, the DLC adds outfits for the player’s stealth-based character for missions; it also adds more:
Rediscover the legendary Dunbarrow Cove and the ancient pirate ship The Red Sabre. Dunbarrow Cove not only provides a home base to operate out of, you can purchase new vendors, trainers, and even an upgrade to your sleeping quarters with the loot from your heists.
Word comes from ESRB that it has re-rated 2K Games’ Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion to a “M” (Mature) from its former “T” (Teen) rating. Apparently, the change was invoked due to the presence of a “locked-out art file or ‘skin’ that, if accessed through a third party modification to the PC version of the game, allows the user to play with topless versions of female characters.” Yes, an user mod caused the change.
The locked out content isn’t accessible in the Xbox 360 version, which has retained its “T” rating. This follows the “Hot Coffee” scandal of GTA: San Andreas – its rating was also changed due to a user-created mod that allowed the player to see (and do) naughty stuff.
Bethesda has issued a statement on the matter, standing by ESRB’s decision and clearing up a few bits of misinformation.
The ESRB has revoked their Teen rating for The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion for the PC and the Xbox 360 and has assigned the game a new rating of Mature. The ESRB reports that this is due to content in the game that was not fully disclosed when rating the game initially. Bethesda, not its co-publisher, developed the game, handled the ratings application before the ESRB, and stands behind it.
Bethesda will promptly implement the ratings change that the ESRB has ordered for Oblivion. We will not contest the ESRB’s decision to re-rate the game as Mature, nor will we change the game’s content to keep a Teen rating. We believe that this critically acclaimed game is not typical of Mature rated titles, and does not present the central themes of violence that are common to those products.
Bethesda will work with its co-publisher to place new “M” rating stickers on Oblivion packaging now at retail and in warehouses, and will reflect the change in rating on newly manufactured product. No product recall is being directed.
In light of the public comments that are being made about this matter, and to respond to questions we are being asked, we are releasing this statement to be on record about the circumstances giving rise to Oblivion’s change in rating.
Bethesda Softworks made what it believes was a full, accurate, and comprehensive submission on Oblivion to the ESRB months before the game’s release. Bethesda used the ESRB’s application forms and believes it adhered closely to their requirements. Nothing was hidden from the ratings agency. No effort was made by Bethesda to lobby or influence the agency for any particular rating.
The ESRB has concluded that the game deserves a rating of Mature because: 1) partial nudity in the PC version of the game can be created by modders; and 2) the game contains excessive blood and gore that go beyond a Teen rating. The facts are as follows:
There is no nudity in Oblivion without a third party modification. In the PC version of the game only – this doesn’t apply to the Xbox 360 version – some modders have used a third party tool to hack into and modify an art archive file to make it possible to create a mesh for a partially nude (topless) female that they add into the game. Bethesda didn’t create a game with nudity and does not intend that nudity appear in Oblivion. There is no nude female character in a section of the game that can be “unlocked.” Bethesda can not control tampering with Oblivion by third parties. Bethesda is taking steps to ensure that modders can not continue to hack into Oblivion’s art archives to create partially nude figures.
With regard to violence, Bethesda advised the ESRB during the ratings process that violence and blood effects were “frequent” in the game – checking the box on the form that is the maximum warning. We further advised that the game contained occasional torture, vulgar acts, and gore. We gave accurate answers and descriptions about the type and frequency of violence that appears in the game. We submitted a 60-page document listing the explicit language, acts, and scenes in the game. Oblivion packaging already contains warnings for “Violence” and “Blood and Gore.”
We value the role of the ESRB and believe the rating agency plays a valuable role in regulating our industry. As always, we will continue work in good faith to comply fully with the ESRB’s standards and policies.
We remain enormously proud of Oblivion and the standard of excellence in game development it represents. Oblivion is one of the highest rated games of all time and one of the most popular games available on the Xbox 360 and the PC. We greatly appreciate the understanding and support of our fans.
So, developers are now accountable for third-party/user-created content? That’s ridiculous!