After nearly a week, I finally finished Reclaiming Sancre Tor. Rather surprised at how large the mod file was and how extensive the quests were, I only finished the main quests, got couple side quests to finish off now. Let’s get crackin’ on the review.
This mod basically expands upon the role and lore of the Blades and as well, as your own. It revamps the Sancre Tor ruin into the ancient religious headquarters for the Blades, with its own lore linking its past to the Blades (wait, it was already linked in the Oblivion main quest…hopefully you know what I mean). Adds new characters and well introducing familiar faces to breathe life into Sancre Tor. New quests to rise through the ranks of the Blades, to prove you are worthy of being a member of the order and side-quests to keep you busy with its various rewards, and of course new locations to explore.
The main quest line starts off a little slow in the beginning especially, then slowly begins to build momentum. It eventually comes to a climax near the end of the quest-line where everything is finally revealed to the player. Seeing how everything was linked together and the final picture forming. I really liked that plot twist regarding the ‘deceiver’ and how this mysterious figure was linked to the player. There is the warning that the Blades’ battle with the elusive enemy mentioned throughout the quests is still ongoing. Perhaps there will be a sequel to this mod that addresses the elusive antagonist in future. Oh and a quick warning, the quarter-master will take all your items on your person when you turn in your belongings and you will not get them back till the main quest-line of RST is concluded, so store the items you wish to keep somewhere safe then turn your belongings in.
Really well-made. I was surprised at the amount of detail that went into this. Although, I did get lost several times inside Sancre Tor. Which I did find it slightly frustrating at times till you get your bearings inside the fort, but in the end I really enjoyed it and had fun. I didn’t see anything wrong with this mod. Other than a few issues that I will address in the paragraph below.
The side quests were also well-made except I had a problem with the Phoenix hunt quest where I was missing a portal to get out of the grotto where it turns out that the portal to leave the grotto is missing.
DarkRider seemed to have forgotten to include a way to leave the grotto once you enter it (it may have been fixed with the updated versions). You will have to use the console to leave the grotto area, unless you have a spell that lets you return to a player-owned home. Such a small thing missing which causes a massive problem for players. Edit: I take that back, there is indeed a portal that lets you leave the area. It is behind the altar with the white flame. I did not see it for some reason. issue I noticed concerns the Dragonblade, your main reward for the main RST is that when you pick the one-handed versions and try to wield the sword, it appears to be still sheathed. So you don’t actually get to see the actual blade itself, which is rather disappointing. This issue may have been addressed in the future updates. I am not sure whether this issue applies to the two-handed version of the blade.
Although I noticed that some people have issues when it comes to the ‘There came a Dark Rider’ side-quest where they never get the journal update and the clue book. Since you do not really know how many days/weeks you have to wait in-game before getting the continuation to the quest, while most just seem to never get the update. I personally enjoyed that quest since each of the scrolls have a little bit of information of the design process that went into the mod such has the house and banner designs.
I was a little sad that when the main quest-line was over, it was so well made. The fact that the armor and katanas was re-textured yet unique at the same time. Not sure if I ever got how Akavirians were Japanese but doesn’t really bother me. Since most people link them with Japanese related things such as armor and language. Lovely player home in the Imperial City which does not seem out-of-place, unless you count where it is located. Little odd being placed in the Arena district but then again, most of the other districts are pretty populated. Personally would have preferred it being a little further away from the Arena itself, or place the manor in the surrounding area outside the Imperial City would be a consideration. I personally loved the hidden clues that lead you to DarkRider’s cabin which is based on the player-home that the modder uses in their own Oblivion game. Although, you could also buy an apartment that is in the Imperial market district as well and there is the master quarters you will receive upon your advancement. You will get quite a few places to own and call your home.
The fact that you travel to many different places and have unique ways to get there, made it all the more interesting. Along with the side-quests, both updated in the journal and hidden ones were a great challenge and enhancing the experience. Really liked how you play detective as well, to find clues as to the culprits wrong-doings in the past. I actually think everyone should play this mod. It is so well-made. This is definitely going to be one of the mods I have to keep re-installing whenever I play Oblivion, along with others such as: The Lost Spires and Tears of the Fiend for example.
I loved two quests in particularly during this mod. It is during the Spies Like Us quests, I particularly loved that quest-line with its plot. Especially going to different places to find clues and to piece the clues you found together. Followed by the shock of being arrested then having to defend your actions in front of the council. The second quest I loved was the Trials by Blade because I loved how it used all the experiences you went through in Oblivion as your test. From being in the starter dungeon, the sigil portal tower and so forth. Trials of the Blade quest was my favorite because of that experience, the experience you get doing that quest and seeing all the familiar locations is just pure bliss.
I can only say that you MUST play this mod to understand how amazing and epic it is. However, you need to finish the main quest first. Also, it does have a small conflict with unique imperial districts as one of the items you seek is stuck inside a tree. You can use the console code to disable collisions and grab it, or just disable the tree and get it that way.
Shame how you couldn’t be a grand-master though but Blades-master is good as well (still want the grand-master armor though). Actually felt like there were two underlying plots to the mod going on that take place once you finish the training quests. One involving your new master and another regarding you and the mysterious oracle. Found it weird how they make you go through the training process of recruit Blades. Considering you saved the empire from the Oblivion Crisis, should that have proved your worth to be a real member of the blades? I suppose that question was addressed in the beginning of the mod when you spoke with the Grand-master. The name of the mod is slightly odd though since Sancre Tor was already reclaimed when you play this mod.