Twelve Minutes star James McAvoy was so hooked on Oblivion he set the disc on fire

The Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion
(Image credit: Bethesda)

Twelve Minutes star James McAvoy loved The Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion. In fact, he loved it so much he had to set his game disc on fire after pulling an all-nighter on a work night.

Talking to Forbes about his passion for Oblivion during the filming of Becoming Jane – we're talking almost fifteen years ago now – McAvoy admits that he got a little too obsessed with the RPG.

"My partner at the time bought me an Xbox 360 and The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion," he said. "That was a kind of game I’d always been into as a kid: role-playing games, Zelda, Secret of Mana, all that kind of stuff. Like, I love fantasy role-playing games. 

"So I’m over there in Dublin. I'm, like, having to go to bed at 10pm, because I’m getting up at 6am every morning, and I’ve got tons of lines, and all that kind of stuff. And I’m just staying up until four in the morning just playing Oblivion. And I was thinking, 'This game is sending me to Oblivion.'"

On the night he decided to heat things up - literally – McAvoy says he didn't go to bed until 5.35am.

"My car beeped its horn outside at, like, 5:45. And I’m like, 'Oh my god, I need to do something.' So I got up and I got the disc out of the Xbox 360 and I turned the gas hob on.

"I just put the disc on it and just watched it sort of, like, singe and melt a little bit. And I was like, 'Right, we’re done, we’re over, never again!'"

That kick-started a ten-year gaming hiatus for McAvoy, although he's happy to report that he's back gaming again now – albeit a tad more healthily, enjoying shooters and FIFA.

"During the pandemic," he added, "me and my boys, we're all 40-something dudes with gray hair, bald spots, and all sorts of shit. We now talk every two or three nights, playing Warzone and we talk about life, love, everything while getting absolutely annihilated by 12-year-old children from other countries.

"It’s been a bit of a lifesaver during the pandemic when we couldn’t hang out. We’ve been actually spending way more time than we ever did before the pandemic. It’s been amazing."

Still undecided about Twelve Minutes?

"To enjoy Twelve Minutes is allowing yourself to be OK with failure, learning what you can from each mistake - perhaps a new snippet of information you can use to question someone, perhaps a consequence you don't want to repeat - and trying again," Rachel said in GamesRadar+'s 12 Minutes review

"This permission to fail also frees gaming do-gooders like me from exploring some of the darker options. What happens if you use the kitchen knife on the cop when he can't defend himself? You might not feel good about the results, but you can skip away guilt-free, knowing that he'll be back in three minutes or so to terrorize you all over again."

ICYMI, Hideo Kojima is so taken with 12 Minutes, he may need to make another adventure game to deal with it.

Finished 12 Minutes and still feel a tad confused? Here's 12 Minutes walkthrough and endings explained.

Vikki Blake
Weekend Reporter, GamesRadar+

Vikki Blake is GamesRadar+'s Weekend Reporter. Vikki works tirelessly to ensure that you have something to read on the days of the week beginning with 'S', and can also be found contributing to outlets including the BBC, Eurogamer, and Vikki also runs a weekly games column at NME, and can be frequently found talking about Destiny 2 and Silent Hill on Twitter.