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More classics continuing to live on?! Yes please, thanks to the power of open source and dedicated fans The Elder Scrolls: Arena has a modern game engine that continues maturing. You can download the original free for the data files, thanks to Bethesda releasing it free some time ago so it makes it quite easy to get going with OpenTESArena.

The main developer has announced a new release with OpenTESArena 0.12.0 and it comes with some big new features nicely hooked up including:

  • Wandering citizens in cities and wilderness. They idle if the player's weapon is sheathed
  • Puddle reflections
  • Voice in cinematics (only available in CD version)
  • City entrance jingle
  • Music library system supporting custom MIDI filenames in data/audio/MusicDefinitions.txt
  • Entity animation system redesign
  • Texture manager improvements and initial work on texture instance manager for runtime-generated textures
  • Fonts use less memory and are less dependent on SDL2
  • Added previously-unused OverSnow music to snow weather playlist
  • Fixed final boss display name (was "TODO")

Check out their release video too:

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While it's another great attempt at game preservation, it's worth noting this particular project is still quite early on overall. You can find the current status on the Wiki, which shows it's still missing a lot of actual gameplay elements currently.

You can find it and all the instructions up on GitHub. 

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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7 comments

slaapliedje 12 Oct
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My first Elder Scrolls game was Daggerfall. It still seems to be the 'best, and most ambitious' of the games. It expanded on what was in Arena, and made the land huge. Then came Morrowind, which is a fantastic game, but tiny in comparison to Daggerfall... Then Oblivion, they dumbed down and Skyrim they dumbed down further. All of the little side games that came out for it were even more basic. Wonder what MS will do with the series now that they own Zenimax...
Dedale 12 Oct
I had a lot of fun with Arena. One of these few old games i finished. It worked well enough on my 486DX2-66 with a crappy video card.
TheSHEEEP 13 Oct
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Quoting: slaapliedjeMy first Elder Scrolls game was Daggerfall. It still seems to be the 'best, and most ambitious' of the games. It expanded on what was in Arena, and made the land huge. Then came Morrowind, which is a fantastic game, but tiny in comparison to Daggerfall... Then Oblivion, they dumbed down and Skyrim they dumbed down further. All of the little side games that came out for it were even more basic. Wonder what MS will do with the series now that they own Zenimax...
I generally agree, but I wonder what you think they dumbed down from Oblivion to Skyrim.
Honestly, I think Skyrim is better than Oblivion in every regard and I don't see any further dumbing down between those two games, just a fixing of tons of mistakes from Oblivion.

A Morrowind-quality (and gameplay depth) game at the size of Skyrim is something I'd really love to play. Not that it will ever happen, of course.
AA/AAA devs nowadays are simply too afraid of doing open gameplay RPG systems that allow players to potentially break their "balance" and demand some time & thought investment.
slaapliedje 13 Oct
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Quoting: TheSHEEEP
Quoting: slaapliedjeMy first Elder Scrolls game was Daggerfall. It still seems to be the 'best, and most ambitious' of the games. It expanded on what was in Arena, and made the land huge. Then came Morrowind, which is a fantastic game, but tiny in comparison to Daggerfall... Then Oblivion, they dumbed down and Skyrim they dumbed down further. All of the little side games that came out for it were even more basic. Wonder what MS will do with the series now that they own Zenimax...
I generally agree, but I wonder what you think they dumbed down from Oblivion to Skyrim.
Honestly, I think Skyrim is better than Oblivion in every regard and I don't see any further dumbing down between those two games, just a fixing of tons of mistakes from Oblivion.

A Morrowind-quality (and gameplay depth) game at the size of Skyrim is something I'd really love to play. Not that it will ever happen, of course.
AA/AAA devs nowadays are simply too afraid of doing open gameplay RPG systems that allow players to potentially break their "balance" and demand some time & thought investment.
Two things off the top if my head, skill progression, and ammo no longer weighed anything.
TheSHEEEP 14 Oct
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Quoting: slaapliedje
Quoting: TheSHEEEP
Quoting: slaapliedjeMy first Elder Scrolls game was Daggerfall. It still seems to be the 'best, and most ambitious' of the games. It expanded on what was in Arena, and made the land huge. Then came Morrowind, which is a fantastic game, but tiny in comparison to Daggerfall... Then Oblivion, they dumbed down and Skyrim they dumbed down further. All of the little side games that came out for it were even more basic. Wonder what MS will do with the series now that they own Zenimax...
I generally agree, but I wonder what you think they dumbed down from Oblivion to Skyrim.
Honestly, I think Skyrim is better than Oblivion in every regard and I don't see any further dumbing down between those two games, just a fixing of tons of mistakes from Oblivion.

A Morrowind-quality (and gameplay depth) game at the size of Skyrim is something I'd really love to play. Not that it will ever happen, of course.
AA/AAA devs nowadays are simply too afraid of doing open gameplay RPG systems that allow players to potentially break their "balance" and demand some time & thought investment.
Two things off the top if my head, skill progression, and ammo no longer weighed anything.
Isn't skill progression the same in all Elder Scrolls games?
You improve a skill by using it, you get a level-up after X improvements. What exactly the level-up does differs, but I'd really only call that differ, not dumb down.
Oblivion gets base stat improvements, Skyrim has these skill "trees".
I'd even call that added complexity as stats are a no-brainer (you'll always bump your main stats in Oblivion and ignore the rest), while these trees at least offered some choices (not good ones, mind you, at least without mods).

Ammo without weight?
Yeah, thankfully! If a game doesn't give you the (very realistic, but somehow almost never implemented) option of having a horse+cart, the least it should do is not bog down your weight with stuff like ammo or gold.
You already have to do multiple treks to clear out dungeons that actually contain some good loot.
Without ways to deal with the added weight, ammo/currency weight only serves to stretch gameplay and add menial repetition, which I do not consider positive gameplay elements.

Oh, wait, Daggerfall actually has that horse+cart! Plus banks to deal with your masses of gold.
Yeah, I remember how I was first pissed at how weight is handled (even currency has weight in Daggerfall), but then was pleasantly surprised that they give you the possibility to get a horse+cart as well as exchange your gold for bank certificates (which can be exchanged for gold again at different locations).
Definitely the best solution to the problem - man that game was, and in some ways still is, ahead of its time.

But having no weight for ammo/gold is still better than having weight for them, but no ways to deal with it.


Last edited by TheSHEEEP on 14 October 2020 at 6:28 am UTC
Dedale 14 Oct
Yeah, i liked Daggerfall too. I was a bit frustrated because as far as i know learning languages had no influence on the gameplay and you couldn't do much in the Dibella temples. You could also buy one and only one house. You had to sell your house if you wanted to buy another one.

But like Arena, it worked on my puny DX2-66.

Arena had a classic XP and levels system but the devs did not like it and introduced the notion of progressing by using skills in Daggerfall.


Last edited by Dedale on 14 October 2020 at 7:20 am UTC
slaapliedje 14 Oct
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Quoting: DedaleYeah, i liked Daggerfall too. I was a bit frustrated because as far as i know learning languages had no influence on the gameplay and you couldn't do much in the Dibella temples. You could also buy one and only one house. You had to sell your house if you wanted to buy another one.

But like Arena, it worked on my puny DX2-66.

Arena had a classic XP and levels system but the devs did not like it and introduced the notion of progressing by using skills in Daggerfall.
Daggerfall is a game that you can tell they ocerscoped it and it wasn't finished. So much potential for one of the most epic games, but it was bogged down with bugs and incomplete features. It really should be open sourced so it could be remade with a modern engine. Though there is the Unity engine remake which is amazing.

I mean with this new trend to remaster games, Bethesda / Zenimax / Microsoft should do this one!

Though they would probably censor the nudity ha.
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