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The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood

Bethesda Softworks, ZeniMax Media
Jun 1, 2021 - PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC, Google Stadia
Strong Man

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Top Critic Average


Critics Recommend

7 / 10
God is a Geek
8.5 / 10
Game Rant
4 / 5
85 / 100
PlayStation Universe
8 / 10
The Games Machine
8 / 10
70 / 100
Digital Chumps
8.8 / 10
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The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood Trailers

The Elder Scrolls Online - Gates of Oblivion Launch Cinematic thumbnail

The Elder Scrolls Online - Gates of Oblivion Launch Cinematic

The Elder Scrolls Online: Gates of Oblivion - Official Cinematic Announcement Trailer thumbnail

The Elder Scrolls Online: Gates of Oblivion - Official Cinematic Announcement Trailer

The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood Screenshots

Critic Reviews for The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood


Christian "Reggie" Wait
7 / 10

Blackwood is a brilliant throwback to Oblivion, but it feels like a starting point for a grander tale. Players going into Blackwood expecting a full-fat expansion experience will feel slightly letdown. Its dedication to 2006s Cyrodill shines through with the spaced out content making the overall zone feel a little empty. Still, the content itself is a job well done, ticking all the boxes to keep players entertained, but new features like Blackwood's companions work best when revisiting older zones.

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The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood is a dense expansion that delves into what made Oblivion so good, featuring a great story and more.

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The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood provides plenty of enjoyable content, but it may not be enough to breathe new life into the MMO.

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I am a huge fan of the entire Elder Scrolls franchise, and have played ESO since beta. My absolute favorite Chapter was Elsweyr and that will forever be a hard one to top, but Blackwood was quite enjoyable. The addition of Companions is fun for both new and veteran players, but I am kind of left feeling like this could have been a DLC rather than a full-blown Chapter. I had a good time questing through the area and completing the main story, and the throwbacks to Oblivion with the story and portals were very cool. I definitely hope to see more Companions added to the game, even if it's through the Crown Store. My only request is to add on to the already amazing story that is being told!

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Blackwood brings an intriguing new story full of conspiracy and demonic dangers to The Elder Scrolls Online, and while that's good, it's the addition of Oblivion Portals and A.I. Companions that really make the latest expansion a winner.

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The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood feels like an expansion developed with a different degree of maturity. Rather than adding new classes or skill lines, it focuses on improving the new player experience, while also adding intriguing new story content and world events. The addition of AI companions also makes the solo experience much more appealing, although obviously you'll still have to look for flesh-and-bone teammates if you want to tackle tougher trials and events. Overall, a solid expansion pack, although we wish we could have had a better look at the Seal of Endeavors system.

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The Elder Scrolls Online cannot be faulted for lack of content, and while each new expansion opens up new, unexplored regions or folds older Elder Scrolls lore and landscapes into the game, the DLC is starting to feel pretty formulaic. The new Companions are definitely a welcome addition to those of us who prefer to play solo, and Blackwood has a main quest, cities, and characters that are worth exploring. Blackwood — the region and the DLC — might be an odd and confusing place for new players to start their journey with the game, but for long time players the Companions and nostalgia factor baked into the expansion might be enough to give them a bit of fresh energy.

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ZeniMax has outdone themselves once again with Blackwood. Ever since I started reviewing additions to The Elder Scrolls Online (which was back when Murkmire came out), I've been impressed time and again. While I was not as impressed with the majority of this chapter, I was pleasantly surprised in the end. Blackwood is a great introduction to this year's Gates of Oblivion event. I can't wait to see what the rest of the year holds.

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