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On Oblivion and Beyond: #3 – Followers

I’ve always had a headcanon that Hundolin is the Adoring Fan’s older brother and that is why he’s always around the Arena grounds.

The 25th of Sun’s Height, 433 3E.

Good Turdas and welcome to the third installment of On Oblivion and Beyond. Today we will be taking a slight departure from the skills and will be discussing Oblivion’s followers and the follower system.

I want to start by saying that I love having followers in Oblivion. One of my favorite things to do when I was younger and today was to amass as many followers as possible. There are a lot of followers in Oblivion, and they all come from very different places. Unlike Skyrim, you don’t have a set follower limit (sort of, the game doesn’t want you to have too many and will prompt you “have too many followers”, but you can have as much as you want) and you can gather up somewhat of a small army. I would love to bring all of the followers and house them in Battlehorn Castle, ready for a huge fight. However, the followers in Oblivion are very weak, and as I talked in the previous installment, the leveling system in Oblivion makes it so that your enemies level up as you do, but in contrast, not all friendly NPCs level up in tandem with your enemies. In this way, the followers in Oblivion are stuck at whatever level they were assigned, which makes them very weak and it is quite a dissapointment to see a pair of Mage Apprentices get evicerated by a Land Netch or even a few goblins.

Because of this, the largest gripe I have with the followers in Oblivion is not that they are not very deep in terms of character development, or even that they glitch out quite often, but the fact that friendly forces absolutely cannot hold their own in Oblivion. I feel like I’ve already rehashed this subject so many times, but it infuriates me that followers are absolute garbage at fighting. I understand that followers are not supposed to do the majority of the work most of the time, but I hate having six people attacking one bad guy and getting eliminated for no reason. Again, please just make the friendly NPCs stronger in this game. Fun fact: Oblivion Guards are always 15 levels higher than you. They are pretty d*mn strong. Followers should be at that level or even higher depending on who they are. Those friendly NPCs are done right, why can’t your followers be strong?

Let’s take a break from talking sh*t about the followers. Here are my top three favorite and least favorite followers:

Top 3:

  1. Atronach Familiar – Storm Atronach: This is the best Atronach Familiar, and you can get him through the Wizard’s Tower DLC. You need 3 void salts to summon him and he’s really powerful. The only downside is that he lags out the game really bad because he has a lot of moving parts when he spins in a hurricane-like configuration. Besides that, he’s really good against Daedra who are vulnerable to shock.

  2. Brother Jauftin (Martin/Jauffre): I put both of these guys in the same spot because they don’t travel without each other since their best pals. In addition to travelling on horses when they’re with you, the two of them are really good fighters and mages, as well as being really cool characters in general.

  3. Mage Apprentice – Breton Female: The Breton Female Mage Apprentices are pretty damn strong in magicka, and are great additions to your follower pool. It takes a while to get them since you have to become Arch Mage, but they are awesome followers. Best part – they are disposable too, since if they die, they just respawn in 24 hours.

Bottom 3:

  1. Adoring Fan: To be clear, I don’t dislike any of the bottom followers, I just think they are kind of stupid. Adoring Fan is exactly that. He is a hilarious meme and he is great since he can light up my house at night and such with his torch, but overall the Adoring Fan just runs around and gets killed. Luckily, he both: respawns and does not report you for crimes.

  2. Umbacano: First and foremost, Umbacano is a snake and should not be trusted. He literally manipulates you into grabbing the ancient crown of Nenalata and he turns into an Ayleid King. Funny thing he’s actually pretty strong, but he still sucks ass.

  3. Velwyn Benirus: This Imperial is also a snake, too. He tricks you into buying his haunted house and he runs out on you. He’s a shitty follower and an even worse husband who beats his wife.

You know what, I’ve changed my mind.

Top Follower:

Adoring Fan: Even though he can’t fight, this Bosmer will follow you through hell and back (quite literally) and will even shine your boots, carry your weapons, and give you a backrub.

Another fun fact: In Oblivion, there are about 30 followers that you can get to tag along with you in your adventures. However, only six of them are meant for you to actually accompany you permenantly, and these six are: The Adoring Fan, Battlehorn Man At Arms, Dark Brotherhood Assassin, Mage Apprentice, Knight of the Nine, and Atronach Familiar. There are unique versions of some of these (ex: Knight of the Nine – Sir Brellan) but in general, the followers are these generic guys.

I think this post is getting a bit long winded and I need to go to the gym now, but I think I’m going to make a follow-up installment with more discussion on Oblivion followers. In the next blog, I will talk about Oblivion vs. Skyrim followers, incapacitated followers vs. dead followers, the companion wheel (like in Fallout: New Vegas), how to make followers more in depth (better character development, quality over quantity usually) and NPC fights. Catch you on the flipside.

– Matt Cuartero


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