MERP is a total conversion modification of the Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Explore Middle-earth in a fully open-ended environment like you've never seen before. Play races like Elves, Men, Hobbits and Dwarves and take part in the War of the Ring.

Report article RSS Feed The BIG News!

So, the big news you have all been waiting for! The present and future of MERP, all in here!

Posted by Captain_Iglo on Jun 21st, 2011

Current State of Affairs

A lot of people here at MERP consider this project as a very important part of their lives. Some have seen this mod grow and flower into what it is today, and even new members experience and can see the obvious dedication our team put into it.
Oblivion has been a large stepping stone in this process, and we've really pushed the best selling game of 2006 to it's limits, in regards to the heightmap and also to the awesome scripting work that goes on here at MERP.
However, we have news that will blow your mind.
This is probably the single most exciting news post released to the public because of all the potential it holds...

The Future

So without further ado, let us unveil this behemoth of awesome information.

We're preparing to attempt a port to Skyrim!

If you're are wondering the reasons behind this, let us elaborate with this short list that notes all the technical features of Skyrim that Oblivion lacks:

1) Havok Behaviour (advanced animation platform)
2) Actual flowing water
3) Textures of a quality that matches our custom models
4) Better tree system
5) Actual falling snow
6) Integrated AI support for flying creatures
7) Improved Radiance AI
8) Realtime conversations with NPC's
9) More realistic horses
10) Completely redone scripting language
11) Shadows for static objects
12) More efficient graphics rendering
13) Most likely more stable engine overall
15) A fresh modding community from which we can recruit new developers
14) Hopefully a more accessible and user friendly modding resource
16) Probably more efficient developing tools which overall might even save us time in the long run

The step up is truly significant (It's been so many years in the works, you'd hope it was)

Now, we do say attempt because truth be told we don't know if Skyrim will be 100% suitable for a mod like ours, in which case we will revert be to O'l Faithful - Oblivion.
A successful port will mean better graphics, technology and all around gameplay, so you can enjoy the mod you love even more with all new features.
However, it is impossible to carry over some of the progress we made here on Oblivion, and while we are able to keep all the models, some things can't be transferred. Don't let this dishearten you though, the results will definitely be worth the extra work, and our team will be more motivated than ever before.

More exciting news (As if there wasn't enough already ;)) Progress is currently in the works on a whole new, and improved, heightmap!
There is no denying the one we have is absolutely fantastic, but efforts are being made to make it more lore accurate and things seem to be coming along nicely.
We will still be bringing out another release of MERP for Oblivion soon, however the last Oblivion release won't be very big, just Bree with some extras. If people want to play MERP in the future they'll have to get Skyrim.

If the port is successful, we can all say a very fond farewell to the game that has ultimately helped us immensely in envisioning Tolkien's world - and a more than warm welcome to Skyrim, where we will now be focusing our progress.

So folks, Skyrim it is!

As always, don't forget to visit:
our Dev forums if you want to contact us or if you need any help, and
our YouTube Channel

If you want to apply for MERP, post an application HERE

~MERP Team~

Post comment Comments  (50 - 95 of 95)
KeyPath Jun 22 2011 says:

sucks, why don't u guys finish it with oblivion first, then u can port it to skyrim, that way everyone can choose which one they wanna play with(since everybody got different computer with different power)
well, just a thought

+5 votes     reply to comment
Captain_Iglo Author
Captain_Iglo Jun 22 2011 replied:

Actually this is impossible. Say we do finish it for Oblivion. We would need another 3-4 years to port it to Skyrim. ;)

+1 vote   reply to comment
Darthlex Jun 22 2011 replied:

The difference right now being?

All that you can likely port here are the models, no? It is an entirely recoded engine, after all.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Nuvendil Jun 24 2011 replied:

The difference is that to finish it for Oblivion would take 4 years. Then, to move to Skyrim, the mod has to be rebuilt from the ground up on the new game, which would take another 4 years. So, if we do it this way, the Skyrim version wouldn't be done for 8 years. We have mad a lot of progress in Oblivion, but not THAT much. We aren't even 50% through making this mods. We still have to finish region generation, hand detailing the landscapes, city building, interiors, quest creation, dialogue writing, voice acting, etc. It is a LONG ways away. That is why we feel porting now is a good thing. We are losing a lot of work, but not a lot compared to what remains to be done.

+2 votes     reply to comment
KeyPath Jun 23 2011 replied:

well it's not exactly "playing on oblivion with old computer or playing on skyrim with beastly graphic and high end computer" being my concern,
it's just that WAITING is a bitch, and when i read this news, i was like
" d'oh, MORE WAITING ", but know this, as long as u guys make it worth the wait, i,ll ride that bitch :P
so aye aye captain, your fans with u here :)
(sorry 4 my english btw)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Tal-Elmar Jun 23 2011 replied:

waiting is not the problem. But despite my faith in this mod, after this kind of news I started to fear it might not be finished...
eh, forget what I said )))

+1 vote     reply to comment
KeyPath Jun 24 2011 replied:

at last, someone ballsy enough to say it...
yup u said it

+1 vote     reply to comment
Captain_Iglo Author
Captain_Iglo Jun 24 2011 replied:

Who knows, it might even take us less time! Never cross this result out of the list ;) Generating regions in Oblivion took very much time. In Skyrim, it might be, and probably will be faster. It all depends on the CK. That's why we said "attempt". We'll know for sure, at the time that we'll have the tools in our hands ;)

+2 votes   reply to comment
StrikerGER Jun 22 2011 says:

I think if you can run Obilivion on high graphics, Skyrim will also run on your PC quite well. As I said in my post, Skyrim will optimated for consoles (Xbox 360 6 years old, PS3 5 years old)

+1 vote     reply to comment
-muffin- Jun 22 2011 says:

i find it good!

+1 vote     reply to comment
Opinionator Jun 22 2011 says:

I need to get this game. Is it for the GOTY or stand alone version?

0 votes     reply to comment
Dønny Jun 22 2011 says:

:/ hope skyrim wont be too much performancehungry

+1 vote     reply to comment
Darthlex Jun 22 2011 replied:

They are 'limited' in some degree, at least concerning the minimum requirements, by the fact that it still has to run on the console platforms.

So no, it shouldn't be.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Aragost Jun 22 2011 says:

That's great news! Keep up the good work guys.

+2 votes     reply to comment
MC_Fred Jun 22 2011 says:

Awesome news :)
Skyrim will be the best RPG that ever existed and conntecting skyrim and Merp must be truly amazing!!! :D

+3 votes     reply to comment
NocturnalNorwegian Jun 22 2011 says:

I was really looking forward to MERP, but this gives me no good vibes, whatsoever. Even if I can somehow manage to **** the settings down enough for skyrim to run on my pc, this was a proper disappointment. I know you don't owe us anything, but I feel cheated of a great game.

Anyways, I'll keep on tracking, and pray my computer will not incinerate as I inevitably try to install Skyrim. Best of luck.

+3 votes     reply to comment
MobsInBlack Jun 23 2011 replied:

Please remember that this won't release as soon as Skyrim does, this is still years away and by then you should have upgraded to a suitable machine :)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Wolf0x Jun 22 2011 says:

Awesome news

0 votes     reply to comment
TheRookie Jun 22 2011 says:

Reminds me of the old middleearth project for morrowind, which was ported to oblivion and than cancelled. but i expect good things to happen :)

+2 votes     reply to comment
MobsInBlack Jun 22 2011 replied:

This mod came from Morrowind too ;)

+2 votes     reply to comment
Nightpool Jun 22 2011 says:

Sweet. Been doing a lot of practice with Blender and ZBrush, so who knows, I might make a model for you guys one of these days.

+1 vote     reply to comment
jlolment Jun 22 2011 says:

Good News, Everyone! I was going to upgrade my computer for ARMA 3 anyway! This not only gives me another reason, but also seems like an awesome decision! Well, awesome as long as the Oblivion version isn't forgotten. Otherwise you'll just alienate people.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Captain_Iglo Author
Captain_Iglo Jun 23 2011 replied:

Don't worry, the Oblivion version is coming soon. We're preparing to make a call for Beta testers ;)

+2 votes   reply to comment
snaggy3 Oct 10 2011 replied:

Cant wait for oblivion release!!!! hey will you guys put NPC conversations in beta release, or wil it just be more cut and dry focusing on landscapes and the looks of the NPC, Armour, weapons, etc.?

+1 vote     reply to comment
MobsInBlack Jun 23 2011 replied:

Loving the futurama reference, whether it's intended or not :)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Cheebameister Jun 23 2011 says:


+2 votes     reply to comment
BluePotato Jun 24 2011 says:

I personally think a port was a good idea, since Oblivion is ggetting a little outdated.. and the new feutures of Skyrim will no doubt help the team a great deal and make the mod even better than it would otherwise had been. To make such a big decision also shows the dedication the team has for this mod. Great work guys! I am looking forward to this even more than before!

+1 vote     reply to comment
Stalf Jun 24 2011 says:

Oh damned!!! This is not really a good news. I'd say Oblivion is more accessible by players. It's sure Skyrim will be better (better engines, better graphics...) but we are going to wait for some weeks or months more...

+2 votes     reply to comment
Captain_Iglo Author
Captain_Iglo Jun 24 2011 replied:

If it's only a few weeks or months more, as you say, for a Skyrim release then why worry? :S

+2 votes   reply to comment
BlueSunsleader Jun 25 2011 says:

cool beanz

0 votes     reply to comment
tomzo Jun 25 2011 says:

I think this is so **** it just means waiting even longer. Lost interest

+2 votes     reply to comment
MobsInBlack Jun 25 2011 replied:

It really doesn't, it adds on a few months tops.
We're not creating this mod especially for you and perhaps you should give a thought to the hard work people put into this mod.
We're eternally sorry it doesn't fit around your time schedule.

+2 votes     reply to comment
roykio Jun 25 2011 says:

I am gonna play Skyrim first on the PS3, and after a while I se if I buy it for PC is 1.5 years old so it should be alright ;)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Maury Jun 26 2011 says:


+1 vote     reply to comment
Noremakk Jun 26 2011 says:

I was worried this mod might fall into obscurity when I heard Skyrim was coming out. Good on you guys keeping the mod on the freshest base.

+2 votes     reply to comment
m713x Jun 26 2011 says:

The point about being able to recruit more developers was the most important. You should have capitalised that. I really hope it works out with Skyrim.

+2 votes     reply to comment
johntis Jul 21 2011 says:

U go giirls!! :D

+1 vote     reply to comment
DaredevilGR Aug 14 2011 says:

Damn if they gave you a copy of Skyrim now with a pack of editor tools and managed to finish the mod and release it the day Skyrim would be released , I would choose this 100%

+1 vote     reply to comment
Impe Aug 23 2011 says:

I think a Skyrim port would be awesome ! And the the time is not a problem, if this mod needs 4/5 years to be finished, then i'll wait 4/5 years.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Maskar Sep 14 2011 says:

and whats with the next beta? can sb set a date or tell us about the process? ;)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Captain_Iglo Author
Captain_Iglo Sep 16 2011 says:

I can't give you a date but it's close, really close ;)

+1 vote   reply to comment
Bloodguard Sep 17 2011 says:

For the Pro:,
To "ALL" MERP Members..`1st off, Awesome thoughts & Stratagic(?)Idea to port Skyrim, Hope it works!!!! (Thumbs Up for Attempts).

Now for the Con:,
'Cmon guys, enough is enough! I don't know if your all O.C.D. or what??,
You'll "NEVER,EVER,EVER", have a Completely flawless(As close as possible anyways) Mod!!! Finish what you start before you jump off the deep end & anounce a "Great Idea", if you've all been working on this so long, then why in the H*** wouldn't you release the thing & stop trying to make it as "Current" as possible...All modders know this.

This isn't a verbal lashing...its just common sense. release mod for original 1st (Finish what you start). Then (AND ONLY THEN), attempt port or Patch. I have "PERFECTION" issues too(Everyone has,to a certain extent). but even I understand the concept of "chasing windmills"(LOL).
Just release the oblivion ver. & stop trying to justify that "This" or "THAT" would work better. I'm older than most of your bloodlines(LOL) & even I'm ready to throw in the towel on this one...

Just release Beta testers already & "Let the Urik's wage war, where they will"(LOL). No more stuff OK?
Best wishes & again "NOT" Verbal Abuse, just finish it already without the "Oh...we need more" Stuff, Only lesser men of the west follow(Listen/agree with excuses)...Me, I'm more the Endain-Type.LOL

Best Wishes With Much Sucess

+1 vote     reply to comment
Captain_Iglo Author
Captain_Iglo Sep 18 2011 replied:

Thanks for your wishes!

I'll first tell you what Todd Howard said in an interview:

"We were inspired by lord of the rings when we were making Skyrim's atmosphere."

So tell me now, which game feels a lot more suitable for MERP?

Plus, we already said we will try, and we have mostly managed, to keep the work and time loss to a minimum. Also, we can't release the game for Oblivion and then for Skyrim too cause that would take like 10 years! You claim to be an experienced modder, so tell me, how would you feel to work on a mod for 4-5 years with a team, and then work on the same mod again for a different but similar game for another 4-5 years? Probably the team would be gone, and, personally, i wouldn't like to work on MERP with a different team.

What we also want for MERP is to live through many years after its release. Wouldn't you want that for your mod? I mean, it's a freaking huge total conversion mod, which has been under development for years and has been developed so far by tens of people(in the future maybe hundreds). This can only be achieved if we create it for the newest ES game available.

I hope you can understand. The final Beta for Oblivion will be out soon with much stuff to do.

Best wishes,

+1 vote   reply to comment
Freke Sep 21 2011 says:


+1 vote     reply to comment
Freke Sep 21 2011 says:

You do realize this is going to delay your work? You're drawing out this process much longer, which is only going to cause strain on yourselves. There's no point in now scrapping everything you had in-game to go to a game that's not even released yet.
Now, not saying I wouldn't love to see MERP on Skyrim, but right now, that to me, is a bad move on your part.
I've seen countless mods try to port over to a newer version of the game, only to see it fail and crumble.
Not to mention the fact that, everyone has played the living **** out of Oblivion.
Skyrim is supposed to have hundreds upon hundreds of hours of content. What makes you think they're going to download a total conversion before they even finish the game?

Not to mention that Skryim will be a completely new engine. Sorry, but this mod has lost major points in my book.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Captain_Iglo Author
Captain_Iglo Sep 21 2011 replied:

Dude... I'm not going to say anything. Just read my post above.

+1 vote   reply to comment
MrPerson Dec 11 2011 says:

I know I am late to this but, MY COMPUTER CANT PLAY SKYRIM, I think it will be able to handle oblivion but my computer is too old for skyrim and I wont be able to upgrade anytime soon :( I know the answer will probably be no but, will you make a version for oblivion and skyrim? pretty please?

+1 vote     reply to comment
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