Many of you will know the feeling – the mournful wave slowly pulling back across the surface of a burgeoning nostalgia – the moment when you’ve sucked dry the last content in a Bethesda RPG. As enormous and all-encompassing as they can be, there’s always an end to the official content contained within these astonishing games. From Daggerfall to Skyrim, from the isometric wastelands of the original Fallout to the questionable choices in 76 – all of these games, in some way, have offered players what felt at the outset like an endless well of content to experience. When I had squeezed the last from such an experience I would find myself wandering the world, hoping for more.

Thankfully there are hugely rich modding communities out there for Bethesda RPGs, not the least Oblivion. An undeniably quirky masterpiece from 2006 (radiant AI anyone?) Oblivion still stands up to scrutiny to this very day. With a few ‘ini’ file tweaks and control scheme jiggery-pokery, even the most hardened Skyrim fan can feel comfortable with it. As much as it stands up to scrutiny, it also comes packaged with the previously extolled mournful sense of loss once you’ve drained the land dry of new experiences. That’s where the modders come in.

For those of you who yearn for more Oblivion, I’m going to point you towards what I consider to be some of the best content expansion mods available for the game. Here are my five essential (in no particular order) Oblivion content mods.

Morrowblivion looks

1) Morroblivion

An astonishing piece of work, Morroblivion takes the land from – well – Morrowind (Elder Scrolls III) and allows the player to take their Oblivion character there for further adventures. These lands come complete with all new quests, characters (voiced) and the advantage of the Oblivion engine in the Morrowind setting. The landscape itself is lovely, albeit massive – it will take a long time to traverse, given that the game mechanics from Morrowind allowing super-fast travel don’t translate – but it’s not enough of a gripe to put me off. Another gripe that lore enthusiasts might encounter is the problem of timelines – how can the Hero of Kvatch be in Morrowind experiencing those events from the past? I choose to imagine my character has had some kind of time travel experience, but I do understand that some players may balk at this. That being said, for the vast majority of players for whom the Morrowind engine may be off-putting, this is essentially a beautifully crafted content dump – an expansion on a grand scale. For that reason, it comes highly recommended from me.

Valenwood Mod for oblivion
Source: Valenwood Improved at Oblivion Nexus – mods and community (

2) Valenwood Improved

Similarly to Morroblivion but on a lesser scale, Valenwood Improved allows you to explore the aforementioned province. Familiar to those who have played Elder Scrolls Online, this expansion comes packed with features including eight new cities, new villages, new ruins to explore, caves and mines, new NPCs as well as quests to complete. For the collectors out there Valenwood is host to a number of new items – and for the zoologists, there are some new creatures too. Now – I will caveat my explanations and descriptions by saying that in some ways this mod may feel incomplete – for instance, the worldspace may feel more sparse than Cyrodiil, but then again what has been added is compelling enough to take a look. The world feels bigger for it, and having content you’re completely unfamiliar with is enough of an experience to mitigate the sometimes sense of scarcity.

Kvatch Rebuilt Mod

3) Kvatch Rebuilt

I can’t hide it – I love this mod. After becoming the Hero of Kvatch, I was saddened to realise that the city would forever lie destroyed in flames. With this expansion, not only can you become the count or countess of Kvatch, but even have your own statue placed in the city square. I am loathe to ruin your experience by saying too much about what to expect, but suffice it to say that you will be exploring secrets that go far beyond the idea of ‘rebuilding’ – digging into the history as well as other intriguing aspects of – well, I won’t say. And if you’ve ever felt a bit lonely wandering the world, you might find someone in Kvatch who’s itching for some adventure…

Tales from Elsweyr Oblivion mod

4) Tales From Elsweyr Anequina

You can go somewhere, anywhere, or Elsweyr. This is technically built upon another mod – Elsweyr Anequina – but this is mentioned in the installation guide on Nexus, so don’t worry about that. The main thing is you get to explore the lands of the Khajit. This is especially satisfying for those who have been rocking a Khajit character throughout their time in Cyrodiil. This expansion mod comes packed with things to do and places to see, adding greatly to the already enjoyable content in Elsweyr Anequina itself. Many players wouldn’t be aware that Anequina can itself be expanded upon and this mod adds that granular detail and content to the world that makes it feel a little more alive. To whit, it adds 28 extra locations of various kinds similar to those you’d stumble across during Oblivion vanilla. You know what I mean – the little discoveries that make the world feel like a world people live in. On top of all that you can acquire your very own home in Elsweyr, once again topping the game off spectacularly for those who play as a Khajit.

Knights of the Nine Revelation Oblivion mod art

5) Knights of the Nine Revelation

I said I wouldn’t say which is the best, but this is something special. This astonishing mod adds an enormous and lovingly crafted ‘main game’ style quest in which you are tasked with preventing the enslavement of the human race. Absolutely packed to the gunnels with content, this mod features more than 40 new NPCs as well as over 1500 lines of dialogue. As much as new lands are important, the quests are too and this mod shines bright among the competition as an almost official quality addition. I myself am still playing through it at the moment but I can already safely say that with years of Bethesda RPG-ing under my belt, this stands out as one of the best mods I’ve ever tried. And that’s before finishing it! In a little allusion to another article I’m working on, Fallout: New Vegas has often stood out as spawning one of the best quest mod communities. Revelation is easily the equal of the best content there, which is a compliment of the highest level. Finally the Knights of the Nine will feel like something truly special – and if you feel like pushing your game to the limit, you can summon seventy two – yes, seventy two – followers at once. Try it if you dare.

Wrapping up…
I hope I’ve managed to stave off that mournful sense of loss you felt when you walked away from your cherished world of Cyrodiil. Tamriel can be expanded in exquisite ways with this astonishing content from dedicated creators the world over. Just remember that someday you’ll find you’re finishing the mods faster than they’re coming out – not even extra user generated content is forever. But in this moment, you have a reprieve – entropy and stagnation are pushed away for a while. I truly hope you enjoy these mods as much as I have, and don’t forget to explore the communities for more. For those of you itching to expand Fallout 3/New Vegas, I have another article on the way – watch this space.