Oblivion Mod: Shadowfang Keep

From the maker of The Sundered Keep, we have the Shadowfang Keep. Based on World of Warcraft which I am not familiar with at all. Only reason I am saying it seems to be based on WoW is because based on comments I have seen, and the name worgen is something I know happens to belong to WoW. Never actually played it either.

To start off the quest, you head off to the settlement of Harlun’s Watch and find an oddly dressed man looking for someone who knows how to swing a sword. He gives you the back-story of what is going on before asking for your help. He even kindly summons some horses for the both of you, so you may hasten the travelling to the magical portal. He does have a slightly odd path-finding AI script going since he rode all over the place instead of taking a more direct route to the portal. Maybe he got disoriented by the heavy thunderstorm during the night when I began this dungeon quest mod.

Enter the portal and you end up in a nifty little dungeon. You will have a small welcoming committee consisting of the Dalarn Archmage who gives you a book to read, because he cannot be bothered to explain everything to you then directs you to the captain who happens to be a dwarf. The dwarf captain fits more of how a dwarf looks like in appearance, the beard was a nice touch as well.

The quest is relatively straight forward, you have to gain access to the Shadowfang Keep and kill the evil mage. Once you kill him, grab proof of his demise and return back to the encampment to deliver news that the threat is over. Now you can choose to either return back to your world, or go back to Shadowfang Keep. You will notice there is an interesting rune stone which is actually a reset button. This allows players to re-run the castle to see all the potential loot droops that you can get or just re-do the dungeon because you feel like it. You will get a total of twenty-four new pieces of armor, clothing and weapons from this mod. Among them will be a god-like sword that does over 300+ damage which will kill all enemies you can find in this mod with one-two hits. That is pretty insane, the sword is certainly useful since the enemies have such high health. Not sure if the enemies are scaled to the player or have a set level.

The land of Silverpine Forest is relatively sparse. Having only several locations of interest, one of them being an encampment of Magi that you cannot access. The enemies take a while to spawn or show up when you are exploring the forest. The creatures for the most part were mostly re-scaled vanilla creatures from Oblivion, or re-colored. Which leads to an interesting problem for the creatures since they do have a bit of difficulty in hitting the player, by either attacking too soon or being too slow. The hit box on the creatures is also more difficult for the players to hit, due the fact they have been re sized. You have to aim a sweet spot to do proper damage to the creatures or rely on magical attacks to dispatch them.

I wanted to kill this guy so bad for being a jerk, so I did

The Worgen were particularly interesting, reminds me of the werewolves from the Path of the Skull-bearer. I do like the variety of the Worgen, showing their different ranks I am assuming. Although when you do hit them, they have the mixed sounds of zombies and Xivilai (actually it might just be Xivilai since they do make zombie noises when knocked down). I do like how certain Worgens serve as mini-bosses and have unique boss drops. There are a lot of enemies scattered throughout the Shadowfang Keep, so you will be experiencing some heavy combat. So it would be wise to have repair hammer(s) and the means to heal your health while in there. Unless you do stealth, then you won’t have to worry too much about that. They do have relatively high health though.

As for Shadowfang Keep, it had solid design. I do like the various areas you go through, especially how it balances the fighting you deal with between outside and the interior of the keep. The castle grounds is particularly large with a lot of empty space, although it is swarmed with enemies all over the place. The keep is not made to be a player-home so it is highly discouraged you store your items or try living in there. You will most likely lose your items and the enemies do re-spawn without resetting the castle. I do find it particularly odd how the main castle doors lead to the horse stables, since one would assume that the main doors lead to the castle main hall or any other place but where the horses stay. The horses do have an odd quirk where they will attack each other to the death.

In summary, Shadowfang Keep is a short quest mod based on WoW. It recreates parts of Silverpine forest, Pyrewood Village, Greymane Wall and the infamous Shadowfang Keep. You will experience heavy combat if you are not stealth-based character. Be prepared for that because you will be heavily pounded on by the enemies, therefore be sure to have supplies to restore your health and repair your equipment. It is important since the enemies will have high health, so recommended you bring your best equipment with you. The special named enemies drop interesting loot, and the locked chests sometimes have great loot such as the god sword with 300+ damage.

I do find it interesting how they made you an honorary Archmage of their order. Not sure if this will change based on your magical abilities or not. It is neat that you are able to re-run the dungeon to get all the loot possible, if you are that kind of person. Or just love to re-run Shadowfang Keep since it would prove to be a great training ground due to all the enemies scattered throughout the castle.

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