I'm rather happy playing Morrowind*, but now I decided to finally have a look at Oblivion. I read lots of criticism from Morrowind fans (yeah, obviously it's not Morrowind 2) and now learned about OOO. Since I don't actually have the time to play both vanilla and OOO exhaustively, I'd like to know whether I miss something by skipping the vanilla experience.

What sounds good about OOO is the removal of the levelling enemies, and more items probably won't hurt. However, I enjoyed exploring in Morrowind and didn't like the Morrowind Comes Alive plugin being a bit too generous with additional hostiles (even in cities!) so I'm afraid OOO's "more challenge" could result in having to fight most of the time when I was just enjoying the landscape ;)

So let me repeat my question:

For someone who quite liked Morrowind, can you recommend starting to play vanilla Oblivion or OOO?

(I don't ask which way Oblivion is more like Morrowind, since the answer then is "Play Morrowind, it's perfect* already")

(* using some of the great plugins and MGE, but considering vanilla enjoyable as well)

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    This seems like it is going to be a very subjective question.
    – bwarner
    Commented May 3, 2011 at 16:25
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    @bwarner It's not perfect I admit, but I hope the "for someone who quite liked Morrowind" makes it less subjective - one can compare the experience, and I think like the levelled creatures part there are other criteria that could be applied without getting subjective
    – Zommuter
    Commented May 3, 2011 at 16:29
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    @bwarner Perhaps, but I think it satisfies the criteria of a good subjective question.
    – Brant
    Commented May 4, 2011 at 16:44

3 Answers 3


OOO doesn't take away anything from the "vanilla" experience, if anything, it adds a lot, plus fixes some of the broken mechanics (like level-upping the NPCs according to the user level - playing "vanilla", I finished the Arena at level 3, which is ridiculous), while adding some cool new features, like quests and factions and a lot of other stuff which I can't recall right now (it's been a while since I last played it). The one thing is that it makes Oblivion more difficult... Which isn't a bad thing since, like I said, I finished the Arena at level 3...

Either way, I'm of the opinion that OOO, along with the Unofficial Oblivion Patch and the Uncompressed Textures make TES: Oblivion a much better game, both gameplay-wise and graphically.

To quote Raven Dreamer:

Don't forget the unofficial oblivion patch supplemental. The UOP introduces a major bug regarding the Fort Sutch Oblivion Gate, but the supplemental fixes this, among other things

So, yes, I recommend starting with OOO and just forgetting about vanilla Oblivion.

  • wow, we have quite the different taste to how to play oblivion XD
    – Eon
    Commented May 3, 2011 at 16:19
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    I wouldn't call the mechanics "broken" so much as "unintuitive". Commented May 3, 2011 at 20:17
  • There's an easy fix for OOO increasing difficulty: don't use the slow-levelling patch that OOO includes, or use the 1/2 speed patch instead of the default (which is around 1/5 speed). You can explore more sooner just by keeping the vanilla levelling speed, but the really tough baddies that OOO adds are still tough! Commented May 4, 2011 at 15:43

Without question, yes, especially if you've played Morrowind.

The challenge that OOO adds only requires a general familiarity with the game mechanics of the Elder Scrolls series to overcome, which you already have. For the most part, it just means that you'll come across some tougher enemies and challenges that you aren't strong enough to conquer yet. You're probably used to this from Morrowind already, or really from anywhere if you've played other western-style computer RPGs in the past.

I wasn't a big fan of the vanilla game on release, but a few years later I gave it another try with OOO and loved it.

  • hell yeah, I still remember my first rat. And before that, the first mudcrab behind the lighthouse... but that's the fun of it, I don't want to be able to beat up a Dremora at level 3
    – Zommuter
    Commented May 3, 2011 at 16:30
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    @Tobias: I remember my first mudcrab behind the lighthouse too, if you know what I mean.
    – Brant
    Commented May 3, 2011 at 16:37
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    Not to mention, the easy enemies don't suddenly disappear when you get higher level. Instead of all the wolves suddenly turning into bears, you'll still find wolves after they're easy for you. But you'll also sometimes have to run from bears when they're too tough for you… Commented May 4, 2011 at 15:46

I have asked a similar question earlier. It is much better to play a game vanilla at first, because you can learn how to play the game , and experience a unique adventure . After clocking the game, you can Take the challenge to spice it up with addons like OOO to make the game more challenging and rich with new content.

Face it. You don't shoot a bow with a stick-thingy-with-tip in it in melee combat. Get my point?

just to refrain from my previous question, I have already completed the game vanilla!

  • in fact your question was what brought my attention to ooo first ;) but since it's only 8 hours old that suggests you didn't have much time to compare ooo to vanilla yet. Usually I would exhaustively play vanilla first and compare it to ooo, but currently I only have time for one...
    – Zommuter
    Commented May 3, 2011 at 16:34
  • I finished the game vanilla like a year ago. but ya, didn't ooo much yet XD
    – Eon
    Commented May 3, 2011 at 16:53
  • No problem. I'd appreciate if you update your answer when you have tested it for a while :)
    – Zommuter
    Commented May 3, 2011 at 16:59
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    I played the game vanilla until bandits all started wearing "legendary" glass armour. Then I got bored. I added OOO and never went back. Screw vanilla—Bethesda did. Commented May 4, 2011 at 15:48

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