Lock picking worked differently within Oblivion and Skyrim. In oblivion lock picking was built around a tumbler system, whereas Skyrim featured a pick lock and a tension wrench.

In Skyrim to open locks, you would have to feel for the correct tumbler position with a lock pick while turning a tension wrench clockwise in the lock  as you can see below


Compared to what was used in oblivion which depending on the difficulty of the lock, there can be anywhere from 1-5 tumblers. You would have to move the pick left or right will select what tumbler the you would work on. Moving the tumbler up will result in attempting to place the tumbler. When the a tumbler is pushed up a slight “dink” sound will be heard once it reaches the top of the lock. When the sound is heard set the tumbler.  If you get the timing wrong the pick will break and the tumbler will fall. The skill level of the lock will determine how many additional tumblers will drop if the pick is broken.

Lockpicking oblivion

What can be clearly seen from recent videos and information released by Zenimax is that the same way of pick locking will feature within ESO with some minor tweaking, manor being the angle at which you will see the lock at and also the timed feature that will be integrated using the blue bar visible below.

lockpicking eso The Only thing to be aware of while lock picking is due to the MMO nature of this game as posted in a recent Q&A

When you are picking a lock, will another player be able to kill you while you’re trying to open it? – Brenden Warren

Tamriel is a dangerous place. If you let your guard down while you focus on lockpicking, you might get attacked. Enemy NPCs might do this anywhere in the world, and hostile players will love the opportunity to surprise you in Cyrodiil. But then again, you never know what loot might be in that chest … maybe it’s worth bringing a friend to watch your back?”

So personally I think Zenimax have got this right by integrating in the oblivion style of lock picking into their game but adjusting it for the more modern and outstanding looking MMORPG world that I personally can’t wait to be a part of.

Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more content Spartan Dan.