The Let's Play Archive

Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion

by Lizard Wizard

Part 68: The Elder Updates LXVII - RP-Walking


We reload and rejoin our journey towards Bravil.

Along the way I decide to pokle my head into a fort because hey, this sort of thing pays off sometimes!

This was not one of those times.

I used the Sanguine Rose here and got a Xivilai, which is apparently Daedric for "buff topless Dark Elf". He in turn summoned a Clannfear so hey, I...guess I learned something about the Sanguine Rose!

A disappointing dungeon, though it had its moments.

All in all, though, not the best use of our time, so let's just effectively warp to Bravil and avoid any further nonsense.

Our client is a member of the Mages Guild, so I decide to see if there's any good spells to pick up as long as I'm here.

As it turns out, there really aren't, so I decide to throw a fistful of dollars at Destruction training. This makes me level a bit prematurely, so a lot of you may just be screaming "why?" at this point. Let me defer to the UESP on this:


The magicka cost of a spell is affected by your skill in the appropriate school. Relative to the baseline costs (i.e., those shown on the Spells page) the actual cost of casting a spell can be calculated from:

ActualCost = BaseCost * ( fMagicCasterSkillCostBase + ( fMagicCasterSkillCostMult * ( 1 - ( Skill / 100 ) ) ) )

Or using the default game settings:

ActualCost = BaseCost * (1.4 - 0.012 * Skill)

Therefore, the baseline cost is equivalent to the cost at level 33. At low levels, the cost will be higher (up to 40% higher at level 0); at high levels the cost will be lower (as low as one-fifth at level 100). So don't despair early in the game if you find magicka costs for high-level spells overwhelmingly expensive. When you raise your skills enough to reach higher levels (e.g. Apprentice, Journeyman, etc.), all high-level spells will have become much cheaper in terms of magicka expenses.

So yes. All those spells you may have seen for sale that cost upwards of 300 Magicka and seem utterly unobtainable and deter you from investing in that skill? They cost way less, but only if you invest in those skills. This is an EXTREMELY important fact, and it only gets the briefest of mentions in the manual which, as I've said before, is just not acceptable in 2006. I mean, I literally just learned the extent of the magicka scaling as I was writing this update. FUCK.

Oblivion's Not That Bad Points: ((-39E + - + (3 * ))/) + SUMMON THE BRETHREN)^

Anyway, our task: gathering Imp Gall. We're pointed to a nearby cave full of imps, of course.

...oh, right. Guess I lied about not picking up any good spells here. It does have a skill limitation, though, so we're not able to cast it or enchant things with it just yet. I'm not yet sure if I want to go 100% Chameleon during this LP, but we'll certainly have the option now!

We go to the imp cave, which...sure is a cave that has imps, I guess. The bear asses are obtained without incident, and we get a Shield ring for our troubles. Back to Chorrol!

Ooh, scandalous.

It's already evening, so let's fuck right off to Oreyn's house.

Good job Bethesda

Why then have we not stopped them?
Vilena's gotten tentative since the Blackheart mission. She's worried about getting us killed. But we're just getting killed a little bit at a time.
Blackheart mission?
That mission was the start of it. That was when Vitellus was killed. We were contracted by a wizard, Argoth, to recover an artifact from Blackheart. I went in there with twenty men. I left with five. Vitellus wasn't one of them. He died covering our retreat.
And the Blackwood Company...?
I snooped around. Apparently, they completed that contract for us. I went in there with twenty good men. I can't believe that bunch finished the job. There's more. Argoth -- he's dead, the artifact gone. Sounds like a set-up. Maybe they made a deal with Blackheart. I don't know. But I'll find out.
So, what now?
Now we fidn out what really happened. And we let it be known. I want to show the people who the Blackwood Company really are.

I'm in.
We leave as soon as you're ready. I want to investigate Blackheart's stronghold at Arpenia. Meet me at the Leyawiin guild hall. We'll go from there.

So we have our next mission! Before any of that, though, we roll on up to Frostcrag Spire so we can get some alchemy done and hop the teleport to Leyawiin. We hit 75 Alchemy along the way, meaning we can now see all four effects on any ingredient!

Swing by the Fighters Guild to pick up Oreyn, and we're off!

Along the way we stumble upon Nocturnal's shrine. The short of it is that thieves have stolen an artifact of hers, so we make a note of that.

And Arpenia...well, what can really be said about it? It's an Ayleid ruin and you have to slow-walk with Oreyn as you progress through it. Anyway, we get to the darkest depths of the place and there's no sign of a struggle.

They get the weapon for Argoth, collect the payment, and tell Azani where the mage is. Easy for Blackheart to retrieve the weapon and collect on it.
What do we do now?
We find Blackheart and get that weapon. We'll finish this contract and let all of Cyrodiil know what happened here. Blackheart has a fascination with these Ayleid ruins. There's one northeast of hear, Atatar. My bet is that he moved his base there. I'll lead.[/i]

So we follow the dude.

And go to another ruin.

And keep this guy paralyzed so that Oreyn can murder on him. Also pictured: my poor choice of enchanting, in the form of a Disintegrate Armor Daedric Dagger.

Good fun, that paralysis!

We nick Blackheart's ring as indisputable proof that we, not the Blackwood Company, killed him. Not the worst quest, really, but being forced to follow a slow, walking NPC really drags it down.

As for that Sanguine quest? It involves finding out who the Thieves are from some local rumors, then hiding in their house until they decide to blab about the cave they stashed it in.

And the Eye is thusly obtained.

Our reward is the Skeleton Key, and what a reward it is! It's an unbreakable lockpick that jacks up our Security skill by 40 points. The fact that it's unbreakable means that we never have to deal with the lockpicking minigame again - just mash the Auto Attempt button until it unlocks!

And while the game doesn't explicitly tell us as much, it's time to hit up Anvil or Cheydinhal for our next quest.

Boy oh boy, can you guess what this means?

More goddamn slow-walking in a dungeon!

Since nobody needs to see that, I'm just gonna point out that I leveled up shortly after.

And after that, popped into an Oblivion Gate and got me a Daedric Longsword!

I'm accumulating a good fistful of Fortify Magicka stones at this point, it should be noted.

Continuing the trend of this whole goddamn stretch of the update being disjointed as hell, we've also been given a nudge in the direction of a Master trainer. In order to buy skill-ups past 75, you have to seek out these special NPCs and do a quest for 'em. Kind of a neat concept, when you get down to it.

And of course, in another pattern that we're getting all too used to, we're told to haul ass to another town so we don't get our quests TOO fast, because who would want that? And yes, I AM practicing my Illusion skill, thank you for noticing!

Thank fuck for fast travel, that's all I'll say on the matter.


Haha, just kidding. See you next time!