Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion Tweak Guide

Author: Koroush Ghazi

Last Modified: December 2010


The pursuit of quality, attention to detail: these things are fast becoming a rarity in today's world. This is doubly true when it comes to modern PC games. The formula-driven first person shooters just keep coming, each more inane than the last, each promising great gameplay, but instead delivering only flashy graphics and proving to be ever-more uncreative and repetitive.

It was in this environment of unoriginality that I first played an Elder Scrolls game - Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. I spent literally hundreds of hours playing Morrowind and its two expansions, Tribunal and Bloodmoon, exploring its farthest corners, witnessing new landscapes, creating new enchanted items, and sometimes just walking along the ocean's shore at sunset marvelling at the sights, sounds and sheer atmosphere of the game. I was so inspired by what was an entire vast living, breathing, beautifully constructed game world that I decided to write a guide for the game to help others enjoy it, and thus my very first tweak guide was written and first distributed on the official Morrowind forums in July 2002 as a word document.

To say that Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion has been a much-anticipated sequel to Morrowind is a huge understatement. As wonderful as Morrowind was, it had many small, and sometimes large, flaws. Fans all hoped that the next iteration of the Elder Scrolls series would bring with it the subtle improvements required to make the game even more immersive.

Well Oblivion has finally been released, and I can genuinely vouch for the fact that it is not only a worthy successor to Morrowind; it ups the stakes to a whole new level. Gone are the rather polygonal, sometimes barren landscapes: Oblivion has lush forests and highly realistic looking creatures. Gone is the simplistic combat system: Oblivion has true FPS-style combat. Gone are the long generic text dialog boxes: every character has unique spoken dialog, voiced by actors such as Patrick Stewart (Captain Picard from Star Trek).

You'll probably hear a lot of people say this over and over again about the game, but I truly believe Oblivion is one of the best PC games ever. It has such a striking blend of cutting-edge graphics and gameplay, so much attention to detail and such richness of atmosphere that it is a game I believe virtually anyone would enjoy regardless of their genre preference.

However, by the same token given how beautiful and complex Oblivion is, it is only natural that it be a very demanding game on most systems. There are a wide range of people experiencing performance issues, and there's been a mad scramble by players to find any and every means of increasing their framerates and resolving crashes. Fortunately, we have also seen some great efforts by the community as a whole to rapidly come up with tips and tweaks for Oblivion. This guide has been compiled to draw together all the working tips and tweaks, describe all the in-game settings in detail, provide all the useful console commands and give a range of troubleshooting and general performance advice in an effort to provide a single easy-to-use accurate reference source for Oblivion tweaking. Read on and see if it will help you get the most out of this amazing game.

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Note: This guide refers to the latest version of Oblivion Version 1.2.0416, including The Shivering Isles and Knights of the Nine expansions. Make sure to check back regularly for updates.