History Skyrim / TropesN-T

15th Aug '14 4:37:59 PM TheOneWhoTropes
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[[folder: N]]
* NakedPeopleAreFunny
** Unintentional example. Until the 1.9 patch, a GoodBadBug sometimes caused the courier to make his deliveries [[http://steamcommunity.com/id/StarSword_C/screenshot/452848015066825877 wearing nothing but a hat and a loincloth.]] It renders him rather ComicallySerious.
** The 100 skill level perk for Pickpocket lets you steal equipped items, [[http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2011/12/09/skyrim-naked-friday-in-whiterun/ like clothing]].
* NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast:
** '''''Alduin, the World Eater.'''''
** Dirge and Maul, two thugs employed by the Thieves' Guild.
** One of the followers is named '''Ghorbash''' ''The Iron Hand''.
** All the named Dragon Priests, in Dragon language at least: Hevnoraak (Brutal), Krosis (Sorrow), Morokei (Glorious), Rahgot (Rage), Nahkriin (Vengeance), Volsung (Horror/Air Horror), Vokun (Shadow), and Konahrik (Warlord).
*** With Dragonborn, we get Ahzidal (Bitter Destroyer), Dukaan (Dishonor), and Zahkriisos (Sword Blood/Finite Kill Blood/Bloody Sword). Only Vahlok (Guardian), Qahnaarin (Vanquisher) and [[spoiler:Miraak (Allegiance Guide)]] break the tradition.
** All named dragons.
** The Dark Brotherhood, which is also nicknamed the "Black Hand" after their personal symbol. Bonus points for the rite to call them being called the "Black Sacrament".
** They call Molag Bal the '''King of Rape''' for a ''reason''.
** The Dragonborn. There is a reason they are called "[[TheDreaded The One They Fear]]".
* NamesToTrustImmediately: Subverted with Grelod the Kind. Played (arguably) straight with Elisif the Fair.
* NaturalWeapon: Khajiit and Argonians both get a boost to hand-to-hand combat due to their claws (though the former get a larger boost than the latter).
* NecessaryDrawback:
** Lycanthropy renders you immune to all diseases (outside of a glitch) and gives you a powerful werewolf form. In exchange, the player can never get resting bonuses from sleeping, the werewolf form levels separately from the player's normal form, the interface is completely disabled except for the skill tree while transformed, and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking you have to listen to everyone complain about the signs of it]].
** Vampirism is similar. Contracted vampirism gives the player a number of cool abilities, but it's regulated by lack of feeding and going too long without it renders everyone hostile to you, forcing you to balance your feeding carefully. Sunlight also cuts off your ability to regenerate magicka, health, and stamina barring enchanted apparel or potions. The more powerful Vampire Lord introduced with ''Dawnguard'' removes the hatred weakness and gives you a transformation even more versatile than the werewolf form.
* TheNecromancer: You encounter a fair number of these in Skyrim, most of them enemies. And with the right spells and perks, your Dragonborn can be one.
** [[spoiler:Alduin himself is this to his draconic brethren, and is the reason that the dragons are returning to Skyrim]].
* {{Necromantic}}: [[spoiler:Calixto Corium]], the Butcher of Windhelm, who commits serial murder in order to [[spoiler:gather parts to create a new body for his beloved sister]].
* TheNeedForMead: Naturally, being a fantasy Norse-like culture, mead abounds. Skyrim has two major brands of mead, Honningbrew (brewed near Whiterun) and Black-Briar (brewed in Riften), and a generic "Nord Mead". In one sidequest, a group of drunks lambast you if you favor Black-Briar Mead over Nord Mead. If you share bottles of Honningbrew instead, they will be overjoyed and give you a magical amulet as thanks. Jarl Siddgeir of Falkreath, on the other hand, hates Nord mead (he calls it "local piss") and asks you for a bottle of Black-Briar to prove your worth.
-->'''Random Bandits:''' Mead, mead, mead. Would it kill 'em to get a beer now and again? Stupid bees and their stupid honey...
* NeverForgottenSkill: As of the Legendary update, the game has this trope. Once you've learned a spell, you will always know it, even if you reset the skill. Keep in mind that Master-level spells require you to be at level 90 to unlock the associated quest for them, and most Adept and Expert-level spells do not appear until you've passed 50.
* NeverSayDie: The game is very weird about this. While characters obviously have no problem saying "kill", "death", "murder", or variation thereof, the journal entries always provide the objective to "defeat" the enemy, never "kill" the enemy.
* NeverTrustATrailer: The trailer on characters seemed to depict General Tullius as an ObstructiveBureaucrat who didn't pay any heed to his subordinate's advice.
* NiceJobBreakingItHero:
** During the Companions' questline, after [[spoiler:Skjor is killed during a raid on a Silver Hand encampment, Aela the Huntress sends you on a campaign of targeted vengeance against the rest of the Hand. This results in the Hand launching an attack on the Companions while you're away finding a cure to lycanthropy for Kodlak so he can enter Sovngarde when he dies, rather than be claimed by Hircine. And of course, Kodlak is the only casualty, and now his death as a werewolf means he cannot enter Sovngarde. To make matters worse, the Silver Hand also absconded with all but one of the fragments of Wuuthrad, the axe of Ysgramor that the Companions were guarding, and only Wuuthrad can open the way to the place where lycanthropy can be cured.]] Luckily, this is all fixable. [[spoiler:Even Kodlak's lycanthropy can be posthumously erased.]]
** To explore the Dwemer ruins beneath Markarth, you first have to get through a nest of frostbite spiders. At the end of the nest, guarded by a huge spider, you find a dead Legion soldier, with a note on him describing an expedition that delved deep into the ruins. [[spoiler:If you follow the quest to find the missing researchers, you find the ruin crawling with Falmers, and, as one journal says, the spider nest was the only thing keeping them from flooding into the city. Your next target after that is to fix the problem you just created... by firing up all the dormant Dwemer animunculi to kill them.]]
** In "The Blessings of Nature", if you choose to manipulate the Eldergleam in order to access your destination, [[spoiler: you also give life to a number of Spriggans who turn hostile on both you... and some friendly visitors who were only there to confine themselves in the peace and tranquility of the grove.]]
** In "The Forsworn Conspiracy," choosing to [[spoiler: aid Madanach in escaping the mine]] will likely end with [[spoiler: about half of Markarth dead as angry Forsworn rampage through the city on the way out.]]
** Bringing the mysterious artifact from Saarthal back to the College of Winterhold [[spoiler: results in the death of its Archmage and his assistant, near-releasing a dormant dragon priest, destroying part of the College and ravaging the countryside, and nearly causing the world to end.]]
** As you progress through the game, you learn that the Stormcloak rebellion is in large part responsible for bringing the Thalmor's attention to Skyrim in the first place. They might never have bothered to enforce their ban on Talos worship if Ulfric hadn't started a civil war. Related to this, if Ulfric had talked to Torygg instead of killing him, he might have been persuaded to declare independence and no war would have been needed in the first place. Justified since [[spoiler:the Thalmor instigated the Stormcloak rebellion in the first place to weaken the Empire and to give them an excuse to establish a foothold in Skyrim for their eventual invasion. Though they are concerned that Ulfric is becoming too successful.]]
** When the Dragonborn ventures to [[spoiler: Sovngarde]] in hot pursuit of Alduin, it's discovered that [[spoiler: to regain his strength, Alduin has been feasting on the ''enormous'' number of souls that have been caused by the Civil War. If the war has been won in the name of Ulfric before this point in the game, Legate Rikke can be found in Sovngarde despairing on how all the Legion's war did was make Alduin stronger. Ulfric has the same view if the war is completed for the Imperials.]]
* NiceJobFixingItVillain: Alduin inadvertently saves the Dovahkiin's life [[spoiler:during the starting sequence when he attacks Helgen]].
** In ''Dragonborn'', before embarking on their planned assassination of the "False Dragonborn", one of Miraak's cultists makes sure to carry written instructions with them mentioning both Miraak and Solstheim. From this, the Dragonborn is ''[[SarcasmMode surprisingly]]'' able to figure out who wants them dead and where they are from!
* TheNightThatNeverEnds: The goal of Harkon, the lead vampire in ''Dawnguard''. [[spoiler: He fails, thanks to you, but you can blot out the sun for a day by dipping your arrows in Serana's blood, then shooting the sun with Auriel's Bow.]]
* {{Ninja}}: The Dark Brotherhood armor has a distinctly ninja-like vibe to it this time around. Kinda appropriate when you think about it.
* NinjaRun: Sprinting while dual-wielding any one-handed weapons becomes this.
* NoArcInArchery: A ''very'' subtle aversion. While most players have been [[RealityIsUnrealistic trained by other games that arrows fire in a straight line]], in this game, if you do this you may often find yourself missing. Unlike in most games that do have arcing arrows (like, say, ''Oblivion''), the arrow is not fired directly at your cursor, but somewhat above it, so that a mid-range shot will hit where the cursor is pointing. For long ranged shots, you need to aim at or slightly above your target, as arrows fall due to gravity as they fly; for short-range shots it may be necessary to aim slightly ''down''. If you pay close attention, you might notice that the arrow's path tilts slightly toward the nearest enemy in the targeting cross-hair. This can be a problem if you're trying to set up long range lead shots at moving targets, as the the arrow will hit where the enemy ''was'' rather than where it will ''be.''
** Somewhat less averted with Crossbows in ''Dawnguard''. These fire a bit more straight than regular bows, making them a bit more attractive to players used to this trope.
* NoCampaignForTheWicked: Neither the Thalmor nor the Forsworn can be joined, despite both being arguably valid factions in the Civil War questline.
** On the other hand, inverted by the Dark Brotherhood questline - while you can in theory side against them, all you get is one short mission with no significant rewards, compared to the lengthy and detailed Dark Brotherhood campaign itself. Particularly painful if playing a good-aligned character who wouldn't go near an organization like the Dark Brotherhood; you miss out on all the achievements related to that questline.
** On top of that, there's no way to go against the Thieves' Guild or Maven Black-Briar. The fact that Brynjolf forces the first of the Thieve's Guild quest on you the first time he sees you (which is pretty easy, as he stands in the center of Riften every day) has caused a few mods to pop up ''specifically to invoke this trope'' just so they wouldn't be accosted by him.
* NoHeroDiscount: Averted in a sense. While being a good person doesn't net you a discount when it comes to purchases, merchants for whom you've done favors will allow you to take some items off their shelves without considering it stealing, and they regularly restock. As long as an item's name isn't red when you interact with it, help yourself with no repercussions!
* NoKillLikeOverkill: [[spoiler: Near the end of the Dark Brotherhood questline, you return home to find Penitus Occulus Agents sacking the Sanctuary. Festus was one of the first to fight back, and he was [[RainOfArrows pinned to a tree by nearly 40 arrows.]]]]
** Some quests have an optional rider of "wiping out X" where X is the enemy faction. Some have bonuses that can later be used (such as obtaining more Glenmoril Witch Heads) while others are entirely up to you. [[spoiler: Similarly, in the Dark Brotherhood quest, you are free to kill Commander Maro for his treachery as an optional condition to the quest, and you are also free to completely annihilate everyone on the Emperor's ship if you so choose, depending on how much retribution you want. Neither of these actions will earn you a bounty, even if you do them in plain sight of the guards.]]
** The Master-level Destruction spells, but in particular Firestorm and Blizzard. The former is basically a fantasy nuke centered on you, obliterating anyone without fire protection in the area. The latter conjures up a devastating hailstorm that constantly chews away at the health of everyone within the vicinity. Both will pretty much guarantee that you kill anything and everything with an HP bar dead. The problem is this would often kill friendlies too, which will cause everyone you didn't hit to start attacking you (and possibly racking up an impossibly huge bounty). This makes both of them completely unusable if you're running around with allies, or fighting in a neutral zone with people you don't wanna piss off.
* NonMammalMammaries: The Argonian females, again.
** Also, Flame Atronachs and Spriggans. Flame Atronachs do at least have the excuse of being Daedra, to which different sexes are nothing more than a mortal contrivance and they simply choose to take a female form because of their whim (as is the case for Daedric Princes too).
* NonNudeBathing: A few hunters can be seen relaxing in the hot springs south of Windhelm in their underwear.
* NoOntologicalInertia: ZigZagged. Attacking summoners and necromancers plays this straight: their zombies and/or atronachs will vanish or disintegrate. However, unlike in ''Oblivion'', where the gates vanish after banishing Dagon, [[spoiler: the dragons are still around after you kill Alduin.]] Justified in that [[spoiler: Alduin ''revived'' a bunch of dead dragons, but he isn't ''keeping'' them alive.]]
* NoobCave: Helgen Keep and the adjoining caverns. Several locales around Riverwood are also toned down in difficulty.
* NoodleImplements: After winning a staff in a drinking contest, the guy you made the bet with leaves you a note saying he needs a hagraven feather, giant's toe, and holy water to fix the staff. [[spoiler:[[SubvertedTrope It turns out to be an elaborate prank on his part.]]]]
** The Dark Brotherhood "radiant" conversations about their assassinations are ''full'' of these. The flow goes that one will mention where they went, and then...
-->But really. A horker, some twine, three wood elves, and a hatchet? Points for creativity, if nothing else.
-->It's the part with the severed head I find most impressive. My compliments.
-->I'm just trying to imagine you hiding inside the body of a mammoth. Bloody brilliant idea.
** The "shopping list" you find in [[spoiler:Mercer's home]] looks like one: [[spoiler: [[BreadEggsMilkSquick Milk, Goat Cheese, Turnips, Cauterizing Agent, Eggs, Flour, Cheese]]]]
* NoodleIncident: Unlike the previous games, this time we know why and how the player character ended up being imprisoned. However, it's unclear why the player character was crossing the border into Skyrim in the first place, nor is there any set canon on whether or not the player ever did anything more illegal than just being around a bunch of Stormcloaks. (Dialogue at a few points will let the player decide this, but it's just for flavor.)
** There's a bard named Talsgar wandering the wilderness. If you find him, you can ask him for speechcraft training, but he'll refuse, saying something about an incident with a roguish lad and the daughter of a prominent thane.
** The "radiant" conversations for the Dark Brotherhood members are basically nothing but a huge pile of noodles; see directly below.
* NoSell: If you hit an atronach with a destruction spell of its elemental alignment, it just stands there. It doesn't aggro, it doesn't stagger. You get a notification that it "resisted" the attack too.
* NoSenseOfDirection: Plautis Carvain and Salonia Carvain, two Imperial nobles who are on their way from Cyrodiil to Solitude to attend a wedding. You can encounter them all over Skyrim, except near the place they need to be. In fact, they'll never make it to Solitude and instead end up in Windhelm, which lies in the northeast of Skyrim, while Solitude lies in the northwest. Quite the accomplishment, because while Skyrim is a big place, sticking to the main roads and following the signs normally gets you where you need to be.
* NostalgiaLevel: Solstheim, for veterans of ''Morrowind'' and ''Bloodmoon''.
* NothingIsScarier: This game can be very unnerving when it goes this direction.
** There are a couple dungeons where someone has [[AlreadyDoneForYou already gone through and killed some of the enemies inside]]... you almost always expect some kind of noise to happen (or to run into a bandit or Draugr) and it seems really unsettling when they're all gone.
** Golldir's backstory. When he was a kid, his father (or brother, it's vague) locked him inside his family's tomb for almost a week. Just imagine, you're a little kid, locked in a massive crypt with nothing but dead bodies all over. Scary, right? Now imagine having this happen in the ''Elder Scrolls'' universe where Zombies and Draugr are an everyday occurrence.
** Dwemer ruins are often full of hallways lined with hatches on the floor and ceiling that constructs can come out of. You know at least one of them, likely more, is going to spit something out at you, but which one is a mystery. And some of them wait for you to pass by before the construct appears.
* NoticeThis: Nirnroot doesn't just glow, it ''chimes''.
** All dragon words literally glow, have a vortex of wind that clouds your vision of everything ''but'' the word as you get close; and if that doesn't clue you in, the crescendo [[OminousLatinChanting chorus of dragon words]] will.
*** Lampshaded in the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, where one of the walls is buried under the red mountain ash, but you can hear the chorus calling you.
* NotMeThisTime: During the "Diplomatic Immunity" mission, you can ask someone to do you a favor and distract everyone at the party so you can sneak off. Unless you're asking Razelan himself (who gives a sarcastic toast) or Erikur (who hits on a serving girl), the distraction will usually consist of the person walking up to Razelan and accusing him of saying something horrible. Razelan protests, claiming that ''this'' time he's completely innocent! It's an example of this trope because Razelan is a notorious drunkard, so whatever he's being accused of saying would not be out of character for him to say, it's just that ''this'' time he didn't actually say it.
* NoTrueScotsman: Heard on both sides of the Civil War. The Stormcloaks believe that the Empire is weak, that no true Nord would surrender to the Aldmeri Dominion or agree to the White-Gold Concordat, while the Imperial-allied Nords believe that Skyrim has always been a loyal part of the Empire and no true Nord would be only a fair-weather ally.
** Dragons too. [[spoiler: Alduin fleeing from the player after being beaten at the Throat of the World makes other dragons question his leadership, as a ''true'' dovah would either die fighting or submit to his superior.]]
** If you're a [[MySpeciesDothProtestTooMuch High Elf]] Dragonborn, Thalmor goons will utter some phrases to this effect at you as you have at them.
* NotSoDifferent:
** General Tullius and Ulfric Stormcloak are on opposite sides of the Civil War, but both hate the Thalmor and the White-Gold Concordat, which bans the worship of Talos, one of the main reasons Ulfric rebelled.
** This is also exemplified by the bard songs "Age of Aggression" and "Age of Oppression", sung by bards in pro-Imperial or pro-Stormcloak holds, respectively. The song tunes are identical and both songs have parts where the lyrics are the same.
** Try saving before the peace treaty and take different dialogue options to favor the Empire or Stormcloaks, and make note of how often the two sound just like the other between dialogue trees.
** If you finish the Civil War before the final battle, [[spoiler:you'll meet Rikke if you sided with the Stormcloaks, or Ulfric and Galmar if you sided with the Empire, in Sovngarde. It seems as far as the gods, or at least Shor, is concerned, they're all honorable heroes worthy of the afterlife. Tullius is only excluded because he's not a Nord and so couldn't enter Sovngarde.]]
** Paarthurnax points this out to the Dragonborn, as s/he has the soul of a dragon and therefore is driven by the same urges as all dragons: to hurt, kill, dominate, and destroy. Takes on an extra-vicious edge if you've been indulging in VideoGameCrueltyPotential by that point.
* NotSoHarmlessVillain: In the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, Hermaeus Mora shows us what he does to people [[BerserkButton who try to keep secrets from him.]] [[ImpaledWithExtremePrejudice The results are not pretty.]] We also get to see what he really looks like.
* NotTheFallThatKillsYou: Some incredibly long falls can be survived just by dropping into SoftWater, such as [[BottomlessPit Kagrenzel]] and Bard's Leap (although the latter is said to have killed many people who tried to make it before you).
** The lethality of the most famous [[MakeMeWannaShout Shout]], [[BlownAcrossTheRoom Unrelenting Force]], is not from the blast wave but from the potential of inflicting this. If the sudden stop at the end doesn't kill a foe outright, oftentimes they'll still be really hurtin'.
* NotUsingTheZWord: They're called "Draugr", a name taken from NorseMythology.
** Averted with the Zombies ''you'' raise, however.
* TheNudifier: One of the random effects of Sheogorath's "Wabbajack" staff is to strip an enemy of their armour.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:O]]
* ObfuscatingInsanity: Jarl Idgrod Ravencrone of Morthal purposely adopts the persona of an eccentric old mystic. [[spoiler: If you've already ingratiated yourself with her and ask for her help during "Diplomatic Immunity", she'll use this to provide a hilarious distraction to allow you to infiltrate the Thalmor embassy]].
* ObviousBeta: While not to the level of ''Daggerfall'', this game is close. For starters, it has many, many broken quests, wonky user interface issues (especially in the PC version), and is very poorly optimized both CPU and GPU wise. The PC version requires a fanmade EXE patch to curb most of the [=CTDs=] by extending the memory allocation cap (this has been fixed in an official patch; it now is large-address-aware by default), and the PS3 version can suffer dramatic save game bloat and subsequent crashing/corruption issues. The game also has bad default settings, including a default field of view that gives many players motion sickness.
** The earlier patches also introduced some additional serious glitches, including the notorious "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xCjK3BD6u4 Backwards-Flying Dragons]]".
* OddFriendship: In ''Dawnguard'', this can potentially occur with Serana (Vampire) and the Dragonborn (Vampire-Hunter).
** If you've contracted lycanthropy through the Companions questline and refused to cure it either at Ysgramor's Tomb or when Harkon offers to turn you into a Vampire Lord (staying loyal to the Dawnguard), this relationship's oddity can be taken even [[FurAgainstFang further]].
* AnOfferYouCantRefuse: When you return Meridia's Beacon, she will task you with purging her temple of the necromancer defiling it. Your character can lampshade that they have little option but to accept, given she makes this offer [[spoiler:while magically suspending you above the clouds]].
* OffingTheOffspring: Done in a very twisted and tragic fashion, by a certain man in Morthal. Turns out [[spoiler:it was an enthralled vampire who actually did the act, but he himself was also enthralled to not give half a donkey's ass about it.]] Ironic because children can't be killed in the game.
** Lord Harkon's plan in ''Dawnguard''.
** Part of the Night Mother's backstory in the Dark Brotherhood questline.
* OffscreenMomentOfAwesome: "Hold on, Dovahkiin! [[DragonRider Prepare to see Skyrim as you never have before!]]" Take flight, rise into the air, Nord choir begins, and... cue loading screen.
** Bethesda later fixed their mistake by adding dragon riding to the ''Dragonborn'' DLC.
* OffWithHisHead: Happens to one unfortunate Stormcloak. Almost happens to you before [[spoiler:Alduin]] unwittingly saves you by attacking the town, causing the execution to be interrupted right as the headsman is poised to swing. You can also watch another beheading when you first enter Solitude.
** There are perks in the one-handed and two-handed trees that let you decapitate your foes.
* OhCrap: "Never shoulda come here!"
** Also with the very first dragon the Dragonborn will slay.
---> '''Mirmulnir''': "Dovahkiin!? No!"
** When you fire an arrow at mid-long range, the target becomes "alerted" and is reported as such in your HUD for the split second between the point where they hear the arrow being fired and the point when the arrow actually hits. One can only imagine what's going through their head... before the arrow does.
* OmnicidalManiac: The Thalmor are attempting to unmake the Mundus by stamping out belief in Talos, which will help them break the last of the pillars holding up reality. In the College of Winterhold questline, Ancano attempts to shortcut this process using the Eye of Magnus.
* [[OminousLatinChanting Ominous Draconic Chanting]]: A rare heroic version in the Dovahkiin's/Dragonborn's theme songs: ''Sons of Skyrim'' and ''One They Fear'', as well as ''Watch The Skies'' which alternately plays when a dragon attacks.
* OneWomanWail: Night Theme 6, combined with some Ominous Chanting and bits of DroneOfDread.
* OnlySmartPeopleMayPass: Subverted with the combination locks on the claw-operated doors in Draugr barrows. One of the books you can read in-game contains speculation as to why these puzzles were made so easy (the combination is engraved on the key itself). The answer, according to the author, is that the combination is there in order to ensure that the door is being opened by a sentient being, rather than a mindless undead. In other words, the doors aren't there to keep people from getting ''in'' = they're there to [[SealedEvilInACan keep things from getting]] ''[[SealedEvilInACan out]]''.
* OohMeAccentsSlipping: Erandur slips between an American and Australian accent. This may be deliberate, as he's hiding a DarkAndTroubledPast.
* OpiumDen: Redwater Den. It's a Skooma bar that while being by otherwise innocent addicts, is run by sadists who drug their personal brand, take said unconscious victims into a jail below to be turned into Vampire Thralls.
* OptionalStealth:
** During the tutorial, you and your companion come across a sleeping bear. The NPC will advise you to sneak past it (thus teaching you the Sneak mechanic), but he also hands you a bow and suggests you could just try and kill it.
** The Thieves' Guild will dock your pay if you get caught or kill someone during Delvin and Vex's side missions, but for the purposes of the main quest, no one minds if you choose to hack or blast your way through the areas where you're supposed to be stealthy.
** Boethiah's quest is stated by the goddess herself to be a stealth mission, with her telling you to kill all the bandits in the mine without them seeing you; but it doesn't matter if they see you or not, as once you get the Ebony Armor, the quest ends with Boethiah using the same dialogue.
** Subverted during the Companions' questline when you and Vilkas storm the Silver Hand's hideout; good luck sneaking up on anything with him around, since [[LeeroyJenkins he just runs in and attacks]] as soon as he's aware of the enemy's presence.
* {{Orichalcum}}: Primarily used by Orcs. Because... they start with the same letters?
* OrphanageOfFear: Honorhall Orphange, run by Grelod [[IronicNickname the Kind]] [[spoiler: until/unless she gets killed. By the Dovahkiin]].
** OrphanageOfLove: [[spoiler:Once Grelod is out of the way, the much kinder Constance Michel (herself another poor soul who chafed under Grelod's tyranny) takes over tending the orphanage.]]
* TheOrder: The Imperial Legion. And you can join it again!
** The Blades, too. Though unlike in ''Oblivion'', you can't join them, as the Order proper has long since fallen apart and almost entirely died out. Plus they are nominally supposed to ''serve'' you, as their purpose is to serve a Dragonborn and you are the last Dragonborn (not that this oath of "service" stops them ''demanding'' that you kill [[spoiler: Paarthunax]], and refusing to talk to you or help until you do). Though you ''can'' help [[OrderReborn rebuild the Order]] by recruiting new members for them after a certain point, and have them accompany you on Dragon-slaying missions.
** The Dawnguard.
** The Companions also qualify, at least to an extent. FlavorText on one of the {{Loading Screen}}s even points out that the Tamrielic Fighters' Guild has no presence in Skyrim, but the Companions make up for it.
* OpposedMentors: In ''Skyrim'' you have the choice of being backed by the Greybeards (who are {{Actual Pacifist}}s) and the Blades (who want to slay every single dragon in existence). In the end [[spoiler: the Blades ask you to kill the dragon who serves as the mentor to the Greybeards, forcing you to choose one side or the other. Siding with the Blades gives you access to dragon-hunting potions and skills, and the option to fight a dragon whenever you want, while siding with the Greybeards allows you to skip the Civil War questline (making you not have to side with either the Stormcloaks or the Legion) by negotiating a temporary truce. It's also an argument of practicality/caution versus idealism/loyalty. Despite being a generous and helpful ally who has done ''nothing'' to slight you, Paarthurnax ''is'' a dragon, and even though he tells you that he's reformed, he also makes it clear that he fights to retain control of his aggression every single day and that it's wise not to trust him.]]
* OurDemonsAreDifferent: And with LargeHam to boot!
-->'''"A CHALLENGER IS NEAR!"'''
* [[OurDragonsAreDifferent Our Dovahhe Are Different]]: The Dragons, who rather than have the usual BreathWeapon, [[LanguageOfMagic speak their abilities into reality]]. So they say the Draconic word for "fire" and fire appears.
** You've got a regular rainbow of dragons running around, too. There's your standard garden-variety Black Dragons; blue Frost Dragons, which are more sinister-looking; green Blood Dragons, which kind of look like iguanas; bronze-colored Elder Dragons, which look bulkier than the other dragons; and the most powerful of all, red and black Ancient Dragons, which have thick armored plates instead of scales. ''Dawnguard'' adds two more classes even more powerful than the Ancients: Revered Dragons (which look almost snake-like with rows of spines, empty eyes and shiny pink skin) and Legendary Dragons (like the Ancient Dragons but with a more intense black-and-orange color scheme and having four eyes in one socket).
** Beyond the visual, Dragons are like Tolkien's Elves, who will live for as long as Time itself lasts, to the point where the very idea of mortality is incomprehensible to them. [[spoiler: That very inability to understand mortality was weaponized into a Thu'um, Dragonrend.]]
** Rather than have 4 legs and 2 wings, they have just 2 legs and their wings have clawlike hands, making them more wyvern-type dragons.
** Inverted during a conversation with Paarthurnax:
-->'''Paarthurnax''': Do you know why I live here, atop the mountain you call the "Throat of the World"?
-->'''Dovahkiin''': I don't know. Dragons like mountains, right?
-->'''Paarthurnax''': Hmmm... True.
* [[OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame Our Dwemer Are All The Same:]] [[PlayingWithATrope Played with]], as per ''Elder Scrolls'' norm. While the Dwemer ''were'' reclusive master smiths who lived underground, did not get along with most elves, and had long beards, they are also currently extinct, were master [[{{Steampunk}} steam engineers]] - a trait more commonly associated with [[OurGnomesAreWeirder gnomes]] these days - and were actually a subrace of elves themselves. They also weren't particularly short; they got their moniker of "Dwarves" from giants, not men.
* OurElvesAreBetter: To start, they're not called 'elves' at all. 'Elf' is a nickname Men gave them; they're actually called Mer. Aside from the Altmer (High Elves), Bosmer (Wood Elves) and Dunmer (Dark Elves), there's also the [[OurOrcsAreDifferent Orcs/Orsimer]]. [[SubvertedTrope They still act like regular fantasy orcs, though.]]
** In addition to the three playable Mer races, there's also the Falmer (Snow Elves), Maormer (Sea Elves), Dwemer ('deep ones', the Dwarves), Chimer ('changed ones', ancestors to the Dunmer), and Aldmer (the precursors to all Mer races). Of all these, only the Maormer are still around; the Dwemer disappeared after the War of the First Council, all at the same time. Theories vary wildly on just what happened. The Falmer were slaughtered ''en masse'' by the first Nords to arrive in Tamriel, which drove them to the Dwemer, who enslaved them. After the Dwemer disappeared, the Falmer took their cities as their own, becoming mutated, twisted versions of their former selves (essentially they are now [[OurGoblinsAreDifferent the game's version of goblins]]). The Chimer became the Dunmer after Azura cursed them at the end of the War of the First Council, due to the Tribunal betraying Indoril Nerevar (possibly killing him) and using the Heart of Lorkhan for themselves. The Aldmer, of course, became the various Mer races. Only the Maormer remain, on a continent to the south of Tamriel.
** Each Mer race has their own little quirks, as well. For example, the leaders of the Altmer, the Thalmor, want to [[OmnicidalManiac unmake the physical plane entirely]], and the Bosmer are [[ImaHumanitarian cannibals]].
* OurGhostsAreDifferent: After a certain point in the Dark Brotherhood questline, [[spoiler:the ghost of Lucien Lachance]] from ''Oblivion'' becomes a summonable companion. He has been dead for a little over two centuries, but apparently he fully retains all of his memories. This is likely an attempt to please the fanbase, given the fact that he's an immensely popular character, especially among [[MrFanservice fangirls]].
* OurGiantsAreBigger: Giants are enormous humanoids about three times the size of humans. They are roughly comparable to cavemen, and form camps with mammoths, which they apparently use as pets, guard animals, and a source of milk and cheese. Giants are generally peaceful unless you intrude into their camps, though you periodically get bounties on giants that have been stealing cattle or raiding farms. Otherwise, [[BullyingADragon anyone provoking a giant]] [[MegatonPunch gets exactly]] [[TooDumbToLive what they deserve.]]
** Alternatively, [[VideoGameCrueltyPotential you're attacking a peaceful giant, who would never attack you if you just left it alone.]]
* OurLichesAreDifferent: Dragon Priests, ancient Dragon Cultists who [[LesCollaborateurs sided with the dragons in ancient times in exchange for power and cool magical masks.]]
* OurVampiresAreDifferent:
** Vampirism is a contracted disease that eventually turns you into a traditional blood-sucking fiend, but in an inversion from the typical rules, the strength of your powers is proportional to how hungry you are. This results in a careful balancing act as you become more conspicuous to townsfolk as your hunger increases. Vampires in ''Skyrim'' also show a marked preference for ice magic and cold environments.
** ''Dawnguard'' introduces a new version of vampirism which is much more powerful than in the standard game; both Harkon and Serana give you the option of acquiring it. Unlike regular vampirism, it will cure your lycanthropy if you're a werewolf.
* OurWerewolvesAreDifferent: As with ''Morrowind'', they're the man wolf variety. If you become one [[spoiler:by accepting the Companions' offer]], you can transform regardless of the time of day, but the transformation only lasts for 210 seconds, plus 30 for every human you eat while transformed. ''Dawnguard'' adds a skill tree mirroring that of the Vampire Lord mentioned above.
** ''Dragonborn'' adds were''[[BearsAreBadNews bears]]'', which are essentially shorter, stockier werewolves. They're also universally hostile and, unlike lycanthropy, the condition causes insanity.
* OurWightsAreDifferent: Wights and [[MonsterLord Wight Lords]] are magic-using variants of Draugr who can sap your stamina and health with Frost spells.
* OurZombiesAreDifferent: No, they're not zombies, they're ''Draugr.'' And they're cursed with undeath for having served Alduin the first time around - at least, some of them are; others may have origins closer to what was indicated in ''Bloodmoon'', the game that introduced them. (In this series, "zombie" usually refers to magically revived corpses by necromancers.) Draugr are closer to {{Mumm|y}}ies than zombies in many ways, as they are artificially preserved and haunt cursed tombs, and many have magic powers of their own (including Shouts). They also bear many similarities to the Draugr of Norse mythology.
* OutsideContextVillain: Alduin. Skyrim was in the middle of a long and bloody civil war when the World-Eater and lord of all dragons showed up out of nowhere and began resurrecting long-dead Dragons from their burial mounds. Justified in that we later learn [[spoiler: he was sent through time from the Merethic Era to the Fourth Era via an Elder Scroll]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:P]]
* PaperThinDisguise:
** A quick look around the room and it's pretty obvious which of the corpses lining the walls are going to stand up when you pass by. Hint - the ones wearing armor and carrying weapons.
** You in the Dark Brotherhood storyline. Because the chef you're impersonating is an aloof mysterious figure that no one has ever seen (because he's an orc), you can show up as any race, dressed in anything from [[BlackKnight Daedric Armor]] to a Jester's outfit, and no one will question it. Your assistant will only ask that you put on a chef's hat to cook (even though you're just telling her what ingredients to add.)
** One of the possible random encounters in the outside world is a group of thieves that killed Imperial guards, stole their equipment, and pretend to be them while trying to charge taxes. [[BlatantLies Not only are the naked corpses of the guards still nearby, the hesitant way they speak is very easy to see through]]. If you joined the Imperial side of the war, there's even a dialogue option where you tell them you ''know'' they're not soldiers.
** "Captain" Valmir is a Thalmor agent posing as either an Imperial or ''Stormcloak'' soldier (depending on the player's standing with either faction). The latter is especially egregious since he's obviously an Altmer, and the Stormcloaks are not known for being the most tolerant of other races, especially elves.
** With the ''Dawnguard'' DLC, vampires become incredibly obvious, with glowing yellow eyes and twisted faces, while somehow maintaining their ability to pass as normal. This can [[HilarityEnsues lead to hilarity]] when the local Jarl demands proof that the visiting advisor with glowing yellow eyes, wearing what the game calls Vampire Robes, Vampire Gloves, and Vampire Boots, might possibly be a vampire. This also completely blows the cover of resident FriendlyNeighborhoodVampire [[spoiler:Sybille Stentor]].
* ParentalIncest: An intrepid player can piece together some very {{squick}}y hints about the Black-Briar family: Maven has three children, Hemming, Sibbi, and Ingun. She calls them her children, they call her their mother. However, Hemming will also refer to Sibbi and Ingun as ''his'' children, and peeking at the character files shows that Maven is designated as Sibbi and Ingun's ''grand''mother. It's possible that this is just an oversight, as this ''is'' a [[GoodBadBugs Bethesda]] game, but they've yet to clarify the issue and thus the implications remain, whether erroneous or intentional.
** Given that Sibbi is AxeCrazy and Ingun is fond of [[MasterPoisoner poison]], this actually would explain a ''[[RoyallyScrewedUp lot]]''.
** An alternate explanation is a FamilyRelationshipSwitcheroo in which Hemming is actually their father and Maven is their grandmother, but for whatever reason it was more socially acceptable for her to pretend that he's their brother and she's their mother. Again, as there is no spelled out explanation for this, the implementation of either of these tropes is ambiguous.
* PetTheDog: You can do this for Braith, the brat in Whiterun who always remarks "What're you lookin' at? I'm not afraid of you, ya know. Even if you are my elder." If she should become orphaned for whatever reason, you can adopt her in the ''Hearthfire'' DLC.
* PhysicalGod: Alduin takes the form of a dragon, [[spoiler:and is the Nordic aspect of Akatosh, as well as his firstborn (despite being older). Therefore, he is the physical incarnation of an aspect of Time itself. He is unable to be slain within the bounds of Mundus.]]
* PhysicalHeaven: [[spoiler:Sovngarde.]]
* ThePlace: Takes place in Skyrim, natch.
* PlaceboEurekaMoment: Talking to Wylandriah, the Riften Court Magician, shows that she's having trouble developing a soul extraction apparatus. By [[BavarianFireDrill acting like you know what you're talking about]] through the use of "metaphors," she quickly {{Magi Babble}}s her way to a solution. [[spoiler:She promptly forgets what you were discussing.]]
* PlantPerson: Spriggans are a hostile, [[BearsAreBadNews bear-summoning]] variety. They're often found in certain wooded groves, can turn nearly invisible (or turn into swarms of bees), and when near death, revive themselves to full health with magic. (They did that back in ''Daggerfall'', too. "Spriggans die three times.") In this case, at least if you kill them quickly you avoid the revivification.
* PlayingPossum: Some Draugr like to hide in alcoves with the (completely) dead Draugr, only getting up after you've walked passed them. It works if you aren't paying attention, but the only ones that do this are the ones wearing armor and it's easy to catch them in the act. Then you get free hits until they stand up.
* PointAndClickMap
* PoliceAreUseless: In regards to you at least, there may as well not be any guards in town. As long as you don't commit any major crimes like murder, guards can be bribed through use of a perk or your membership with the Thieves' Guild, and if you're Thane of the settlement, you can pull rank to get them to leave you alone (but only once). If you've committed a minor crime, like trying to break into a locked house or stealing a potion, you can just convince them you aren't worth the time. Walking around town while you have a small bounty will prompt mutters of "wait, I know you" from guards you pass, but none of them will actually try and apprehend you.
** And then you find a single lone thief in Riften cowering in the corner of the blacksmith's cellar surrounded by [[NoKillLikeOverkill twenty armed guards,]] [[ThisIsGonnaSuck all with bows raised and arrows nocked...]]
** The guards would be able to defeat most, if not all intruders in town, which includes thieves, vampires, werewolves, bandits and even dragons (at high level, that is.)
* ThePollyanna: Shahvee, despite living in the docks of Windhelm, with the Nords being intensively prejudiced towards her race and being paid a pittance for her work, is very cheerful and upbeat. In her own words, "There's nothing to be gained by being miserable."
-->''"Sometimes life puts you in difficult circumstances you didn't choose, but being happy or unhappy is a choice you make, and I've chosen to make the best of things that I can."''
* PoweredByAForsakenChild: All active Dwemer automatons in Skyrim are powered by filled Soul Gems. [[spoiler:And it turns out the souls in Soul Gems are still conscious, and in constant agony. And might only be necessary to power the ''weapons,'' with the actual motion being powered by some other mechanism.]]
* PowerCopy: A variation. You learn a Word of Power simply from hearing someone speak it or reading it on Word Walls, but you can't "decode" them without using the knowledge in a dragon's soul. So it's a two-part deal: steal their voice weapon, then steal their ability to use it.
* PowerGlows: All enchanted items have a colored glow around them.
* ThePowerOfTheSun: With Auriel's Bow and sun-hallowed arrows, you can fire arrows directly at the sun itself, causing it to ignite and rain fiery bolts upon all your enemies. Alternately, you can use this same bow to squelch the power of the sun with bloodcursed arrows.
* PragmaticVillainy:
** Members of the Thieves' Guild tend to abstain from murder and strongly encourage you to do the same in their quests - not because they have anything against it, but because it's bad for business. They leave that sort of thing to the Dark Brotherhood, unless it's an in-house issue.
** In one quest, they send you out to intimidate a wealthy estate for cutting off the honey to Maven by destroying some of the beehives. If you destroy ''too many'' hives though, your superior will chastise you for it because now ''you're'' responsible for no honey.
* PreviousPlayerCharacterCameo: In the Daedric quest "The Mind of Madness", Sheogorath mentions that he was present during the Oblivion Crisis (and mentions knowing Martin as well), which implies that the player character from ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion'' is still effectively the Daedric Prince that you meet in the quest. Strangely, Sheogorath appears and speaks with the same voice and mannerisms as the original Sheogorath from the ''Shivering Isles'' expansion, either due to RuleOfFunny or to resolve that game's own CharacterCustomization, which is similar in scope to Skyrim.
* ProudWarriorRace:
** The Nords are the most prominent example, the game being set in their homeland. Part of the tension between Skyrim and the Empire comes from the Nords seeing the Empire's surrender to the Thalmor as a cowardly betrayal.
** The Orcs are like this, with special mention going to the old Orcish warrior you can find standing by the road, surrounded by dead sabre cats, waiting for someone to give him a "good death."
** The Redguards are supposed to be one, although this isn't as thoroughly explored. Their pride in warrior ways seems more focused upon skill with weaponry than bravado or testing how much punishment they can take.
* {{Pride}}: A central motif in ''Dragonborn'' is how pride influences people with regards to enemies and power, and ultimately whether or not they can look past it. The player character is attacked and further insulted by people who claim they are not the true Dragonborn and is later able to [[spoiler: recognize that they need Hermaeus Mora's help]]; Bujold is reluctant to acknowledge her own shortcomings and weaknesses; the Riekling Chief isn't and both supplicates the Dovahkiin and considers them a threat; [[spoiler: Storn is willing to look past his pride as a Skaal (who have resisted Hermaeus Mora for eons) for the greater good.]] On the villainous end, Miraak shows more arrogance and hubris than possibly any other character in Skyrim, simultaneously plying the Dragons and then Hermaeus Mora for power, only to immediately thereafter act as if the alliance is beneath him and that he shouldn't need to honor it. He even claims that Alduin is nothing more than an annoyance to him, in spite of it being extremely unlikely he knows how strike at Alduin. On the other hand, Hermaeus Mora shows himself to be extremely humble, giving the Dovahkiin rewards in exchange for their efforts, encouraging them to search his realm for tomes of power and later, [[spoiler: in spite of Miraak's treachery, displays a willingness to work with whichever Dovahkiin comes out alive and, in this conversation at least, barely even taking notice of Miraak's loathing for his present situation.]]
* PunchedAcrossTheRoom: Give your Khajiit character two perks in Heavy Armor, the best gauntlets you can get, and enchant them and a ring with Fortify Unarmed. Go seek out some bandits or wildlife. C'mon, it'll be fun.
* PunctuatedForEmphasis:
** Fully upgraded dragon shouts have enough emphasis to send enemies flying through the air ''and even slow time''.
-->'''''[[MemeticMutation FUS! RO-DAH!]]'''''
** Mehrunes Dagon does not appreciate reluctance to [[spoiler: kill Silas Vesuius]]:
-->'''Dagon:''' Only Dagon can declare if a pawn is worth keeping. I. Have. Spoken.
** One of the guards' lines:
-->'''Guard:''' You see those warriors from Hammerfell? They've got curved swords. ''Curved. Swords.''
* PunnyName: ''Hearthfire'' is obviously named in reference to the home building and family building it allows the PC to do. Heartfire, however, is the [[AlternativeCalendar in-universe name for September]], the month where the DLC was released. Some books (and previous games) even spell the month as "Hearthfire."
* PuppetKing: The Jarl of Riften (the hyper-corrupt home of the Thieves' Guild) is pretty clueless about the state of her town. Her own advisor is in deep with the Guild, and the Guild gets most of its work from the local mead-brewing dynasty.
* PuppyLove: A one sided variant between the two children Lars Battle-Born (who is meek) and Braith (who is belligerent). In the latter's words:
-->'''Braith:''' If only he'd kiss me, then [[SlapSlapKiss I wouldn't have to beat him up so much]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:R]]
* RagnarokProofing: The dwarves have been gone for several thousand years, but their {{Death Trap}}s and robots are still working perfectly fine. There is an explanation for that: the Dwemer bent/changed the laws of physics to make their materials impervious to wear, tear and corrosion, plus some of them (specifically the little worker spider-bots) are designed to repair one another. Destroyed spiders can sometimes be seen to drop ore, implying they collect new materials where necessary for upkeep.
* RagtagBunchOfMisfits: The titular Dawnguard from the ''Dawnguard'' DLC - a rag-tag bunch of weirdos dedicated to hunting vampires. In fact, they were such a bunch of misfits that they split up years ago, and you (if you choose that path) have to help with PuttingTheBandBackTogether if you want to have a shot at defeating the blood-sucking menace.
** Interestingly, the 'minor', low-ranking members of the Dawnguard, who don't play any particular role in the story, seem to be fairly normal people who simply decided to do their part in fighting the (genuinely dangerous) vampires. So apparently, being a ragtag bunch of misfits isn't a requirement for joining, it's just a requirement for advancement.
* RailingKill: Extremely common due to the number of ledges, catwalks and balconies and the physics engine. It can get slightly annoying having to jump down a mountainside or into a pit to loot the body.
* {{Railroading}}: While the world is indeed wide open and lets you do quests in almost any order, the quests themselves tend to be extremely linear, with a few rare exceptions.
* RandomEncounters:
** Dragons start randomly spawning after a while, scaling with level.
** Most of the factions can spawn on the roads in small groups. Imperials and Thalmor are usually escorting a prisoner, Stormcloaks are on patrol and may run into Imperials, bandits may try to shake down travelers, etc.
** With ''Dawnguard'' installed, vampires can appear almost anywhere, even in towns, which is extremely hazardous to the health of the locals.
** ''Dragonborn'' adds cultists, though they stick to the south near the mountains.
* RandomlyGeneratedLevels: Some of the sidequests will randomly generate based on your playing style, like setting the target of the quest in a dungeon you haven't explored yet.
* RapeAsBackstory:
** Talking to Astrid after joining the Dark Brotherhood reveals that her first kill was a CreepyUncle who made "unwanted advances" on her, and it's implied he at least molested her.
** If you ask Sapphire to reveal her real name after joining the Thieves' Guild, she'll tell you about how as a young woman, a band of bandits murdered her family and abducted her, how they repeatedly beat and raped her, and how, after gaining the bandits' trust, [[RapeAndRevenge she got her hands on a dagger one night and killed them all as they slept]].
** In ''Dawnguard'', Serana and her mother are "Daughters of Cold Harbor" and became vampires during a rite to the Daedric prince Molag Bal. Molag Bal, known as the King of Rape, raped a girl to make the first vampire, and it's implied that the event is re-enacted during this rite. Neither of them like to talk about the details.
* RatedMForManly: In particular, the Nords, who are big and burly and mock the player if they favor magic. Even the ladies.
** It's worth noting the only school of magic they respect is Restoration. Because if you live in Skyrim, you're going to need healing [[EverythingTryingToKillYou sooner]] [[FightMagnet or]] [[GrimUpNorth later]].
** If you're Imperial and wearing heavy armor, a Nord might say you "[[StayInTheKitchen clang like a kitchen and should stay in one.]]"
** Walking around in elven armor or with an elven weapon gets you a ''lot'' of flak from Nord guards who prefer steel. Wearing elven gear while ''being'' an elf gets you even more mockery.
** The very idea of the plot is RatedMForManly: a god of destruction returns and sends forth dragons to eat the world. You slay them. You gain powers by [[YourSoulIsMine eating their souls]]. You exert these powers by [[MakeMeWannaShout shouting]]. And it's all set in the land of fantasy Vikings.
** And the theme song, which features a male choir going "Hoo! Ha!" and singing a [[BraggingThemeTune song about how the Dragonborn is awesome.]]
** Normal magic has you studying and using mana to cast spells, along with hand gestures. Thu'ums just have you shouting at reality itself, ''and reality listens''. And you power it with the souls of slain dragons, in their own tongue. If it was any manlier you would grow hairs on your chest every time you used a Thu'um.
** Honorable mention goes to the book ''King Olaf and the Dragon'', which is about an earlier Nord High King dueling a dragon, first with shield and axe, and then with Thu'um, and finally wearing it down and taking it prisoner. The book - which is a scholarly work that simply recounts various versions of the oral lore - mentions that the only way the story could be more 'Nord' would be if King Olaf beat the dragon in a DrinkingContest.
* [[RealMenLoveJesus Real Nords Love Talos]]: The major cause for the Stormcloak rebellion is that TheEmpire [[LesCollaborateurs caved to the demands]] of the [[ANaziByAnyOtherName Thalmor]] and outlawed worship of their native god-man.
* RealityWarper: Dragons (and, by extension, the Dragonborn) have the innate ability to use the Thu'um, or Shouts, a power that causes magic-like effects through speech alone rather than spells. Dragons in ''Skyrim'' don't breathe fire or cast a fire spell; they simply ''command'' fire to appear, ''and it does''.
* ReallySevenHundredYearsOld: Elves, naturally. Also vampires, with special mention going to a 300-year-old vampire assassin who takes advantage of looking like the ten-year-old girl she was when she was turned.
** Serana. She was put away during the Interregnum in the Second Era, before the Third Empire of Cyrodiil, at ''least'' 635 years before the game's time period. Probably even longer, as the Third Era was only declared when all of Tamriel was brought under Tiber Septim's banner, and it took the closing years of the Second Era for Tiber to achieve that.
** Dragons, due to being biologically immortal. Paarthurnax, for instance, is one of the few Dragons that have survived unscathed from the Merethic Era.
** [[spoiler: Knight-Paladin Gelebor and his brother, Arch-Curate Vrythur, the last surviving Snow Elves. Given that it's heavily implied that Auriel himself is keeping the former alive, they may even come from the Merethic Era]].
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Many, many examples abound. On both sides of the Civil War, in various joinable factions, and even with one-note quest [=NPCs=]. Examples include, but are not limited to;
** Ulfric Stormcloak, who is an effective military leader and is well loved by his hold and half of Skyrim. He takes into account the opinions of every member of his court, including his steward and mage, when making decisions. He takes a great many steps to tend to the security of his city in spite of being very short of manpower during the civil war. He is easy to approach during the campaign and shows on various occasions to believe very strongly in your capabilities. He is also regretful of having caused the civil war and wishes an end to it would come soon.
** Ulfric's replacement, should the Imperial Legion win, is basically in running for some "Best Human Being Alive" award. He's kind, decent, polite. Within '''hours''' of getting his new job, he's already met the dark elves of the ghetto-like grey quarters to work on plans to renovate the Grey Quarters, and is trying to find a way to let the Argonians into the city without increasing the town's already huge racial tensions. And that's along with his plans to rebuild Windhelm's economy and reputation following the war. He even keeps most of Ulfric's staff on hand since they know their jobs well enough, and offers lodging to the deposed Jarls who were supporting Ulfric.
** Kodlak Whitemane, Harbinger of the Companions of Jorrvaskr, is an incredibly wise old man and a fearsome warrior well into his old age. His very job depends on him being a good leader and a good man as well. He fully endorses your entry into the Companions despite the protests of his subordinates and is able to shut them up on that count. [[spoiler:Later, when you avenge a fellow member's death at the hands of a rival guild by slaughtering their members at large, he reprimands you for this, as it means to invite an even greater war in the future. Despite this, he still thinks highly enough of you to involve you in his far more important plan for ridding the Companions of their Werewolf curse.]]
** Balgruuf of Whiterun is likely the first Jarl with whom you will have any meaningful interaction. He is well respected within his hold and would rather it be neutral in the civil war; he would prefer to deal with the omnipresent dragon problem, and takes tangible steps to combat it. He is also respectful towards the Dragonborn and rewards them generously for their services in his hold.
** General Tullius is quite rough along the edges, but it's clear that he cares about his men (listen to his speech [[spoiler: after the battle of Windhelm]]) and does not like to slaughter the Stormcloaks, fully aware that the only faction who will gain from the war is the Thalmor. And while he calls your execution at the start of the game a "slight misunderstanding", he ''at least'' recognizes the fact that you got dragged into it for no good reason.
* RebelLeader: Ulfric, the leader of the Stormcloak rebellion, and Madanach, the leader of the Forsworn rebellion in the Reach.
* RecliningReigner: The default model pose for anyone sitting on a throne.
** Which means that it may double as a SlouchOfVillainy for Jarls of opposite factions depending on whose side you're on.
** [[TheHighQueen Elisif the Fair]] is the only Jarl who does not sit on her throne like this.
** [[http://i.imgur.com/iXl5a.jpg Let Jarl Balgruuf educate you.]]
* RecurringRiff: Besides the obvious re-use of the "Elder Scrolls" theme (sung to a "Barbarian Choir" as Todd Howard described it to Jeremy Soule), an astute ear can hear several recurring riffs in the musical soundtracks.
* RedAndBlackAndEvilAllOver: Dremora Daedra and, by association, Daedric equipment. Also the Dark Brotherhood uniform.
** In ''Dawnguard'', the new vampire armors come in red/black, black, and grey, all with silver trim.
* RedEyesTakeWarning: [[UnreliableNarrator Maybe]]. The Dunmer aren't evil as a race, but their red eyes are the result of evil. Long before the events of ''Skyrim'', the Tribunal, a trio of PhysicalGods, broke a sacred promise in order to obtain their divinity. The goddess Azura punished them and their entire race by giving them the dark skin and red eyes they now have... or, if you ask Azura, it just happened without her interference.
** As of ''Dawnguard'', vampires and Vampire Lords have glowing red/yellow/orange eyes.
* RedHerring: You'd think that Ulfric's ability to use the Voice would imply a stronger connection to the plot about Alduin and his dragons trying to eat the world, but it never really comes up. It's just something he used to get victory when he challenged the last High King to a duel. Though Imperials and Stormcloaks have the expected opinions on the matter, [[spoiler:when met in Sovngarde, Torygg bears him no grudge over it.]]
** It '''is''' worth noting that despite not being totally involved in the main quest, Ulfric will gladly tell you all you he knows about the Greybeards and your destiny as the Dragonborn if asked. This is significant when compared to how little information on them you can get from only other Jarl with some tangential involvement in the chain, the Jarl of Whiterun.
** Delphine initially suspects that [[spoiler:the Thalmor]] are behind the appearance of the dragons. [[spoiler:They're not, and after you find that out and rescue Esbern from them, they stop being important in the main quest.]]
* RedOniBlueOni: Ulfric is brash, prideful, and aggressive while Tullius is calm, caring, and defensive; this is ironic, seeing as though the Empire wears red and the Stormcloaks blue. Even then, the game makes strides proving they're NotSoDifferent.
* RedShirt: When you go to [[spoiler:trap the dragon Odahviing in Dragonsreach]], the people on the Dragonsreach balcony are you, the Jarl of Whiterun, his adjutant, and some nameless guard. No points for guessing which one gets snapped up and spectacularly flung into the distance on [[spoiler:Odahviing's]] first pass.
** The Vigilants Of Stendarr are an entire faction of this in ''Dawnguard''. The moment the DLC is installed, everyone at their headquarters is killed by the Volkihar Vampires.
*** Not just killed. Before ''Dawnguard'' is installed, the Hall of the Vigilants is fully stocked home base for a sect of Daedra hunters. After installation, it becomes a burned-out husk filled with corpses.
* RegeneratingHealth: Your health bar will slowly refill - emphasis on ''slowly.'' This is so you don't have to waste your precious health potions between battles; it's not really meant for recovery in the middle of one.
** This also seems to apply to all humanoid [=NPCs=] as well. Possibly a fix for the issue seen in ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 3}}'' and ''VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas'' where caravans and traveling [=NPCs=] would slowly run out of health and eventually die due to fighting minor enemies over the course of several days.
** And the Argonian special ability, Histskin, multiplies their health regen by 10, bringing them up to HealingFactor levels.
** There are also several enchanted amulets, rings and the like which will boost the speed of your health recharge. And though you can only wear one example of each ''type'' of clothing at a time (i.e., one ring, one pair of boots, etc.), the game has no problem letting you wear multiple pieces/accessories that all have the same ''effect,'' thus making the overall percentage benefit a cumulative one.
** Notably absent with werewolves. If a werewolf needs to heal, it needs to eat someone. On the plus side, one or two feedings is usually good enough to get back to full health.
* ReLex: The Dragon language is a ReLex of English.
* TheRemnant: Multiple.
** [[MurderInc The Dark Brotherhood]] is all the way down to a remote sanctuary in a Skyrim forest, and they're short a Listener. Without [[ISeeDeadPeople a Listener]], they don't know about any of the [[DealWithTheDevil contracts]] that come from people praying to [[EldritchAbomination the Night Mother]], the Dark Brotherhood's patron saint and bride of [[GodOfEvil Sit]][[PowerOfTheVoid his]]. They've had to abandon the five Tenets, the only rules the Brotherhood has ever had, and actively go out and look for people seeking their services, just to survive.
** [[ThievesGuild The Thieves' Guild]] is reduced to a leaky old tavern in falling-apart sewer ruins, surrounded by gutter-trash; they've lost every single resource and connection they'd ever had; they've lost the fear and respect they once had, instead being looked on as little more than thugs pretending to be civilized, and they're one flash of interest by the guards away from extinction.
** [[TheOrder The Blades]] have been all but wiped out in the 200 years since the Oblivion Crisis. During the Great War between the Empire and the Aldmeri Dominion, most of their members were hunted down and killed by the Thalmor. Only a handful managed to survive the war, and any remaining members live in hiding as they are still being hunted by the Thalmor.
** TheEmpire itself is only a shadow of its former glory, with only three provinces remaining under its control. Three (Summerset Isle, Elsweyr and Valenwood) have seceded and have become part of what is now the Third Aldmeri Dominion while the other two (Black Marsh and Hammerfell) have gone completely independent (Black March has also expanded north, conquering a fair quantity of what is left habitable in Morrowind). Out of the three provinces that the Empire still controls, only High Rock has been untouched by either war or natural disaster.
*** The Dovahkiin can further this decline by helping the Stormcloaks throw out the Imperial Legion and assassinating the Emperor.
** The Forsworn are little more than guerrilla warbands while their king is imprisoned and used by Thonar Silver-Blood to control the Forsworn.
** The Companions, the honor-based warrior guild in Whiterun, have been around for literally as long as Skyrim itself; they were founded by Ysgramor, who led the Five Hundred Companions across the sea to settle the land. Membership has dwindled down to a whopping dozen members by the time you join the ranks. [[spoiler:Two more then die in the course of the questline.]] Unlike some of the other factions whose numbers have shrunk, however, the Companions don't seem particularly troubled by this.
** In ''Dragonborn'', it's revealed that [[CorruptCorporateExecutive Great House Hlaalu]] has become this, being kicked off the council of Great Houses and being officially disbanded by the Dunmer after the Empire basically abandoned Morrowind following the Oblivion Crisis (and Hlaalu had been the Empire's biggest native supporters). The few Hlaalu members who still exist are basically little more than revenge-obsessed bandits, and there's a small quest chain where you deal with a Hlaalu revenge plot against Raven Rock.
* TheRenfield: Vampires found in dungeons will usually have thralls on hand.
* ReroutedFromHeaven: Kodlak, Harbinger of the Companions, wants to go to the Nordic afterlife of Sovngarde, but since he's [[spoiler:a werewolf, he knows that the [[TheWildHunt Daedric Lord Hircine]] will claim his soul]] after death instead. [[spoiler:Kodlak is killed when his home is attacked by werewolf hunters, but the Dovahkiin is able to break his curse after his death, freeing his soul from Hircine's realm and allowing him to go to Sovngarde.]]
* {{Retcon}}: Hermaeus Mora's appearance (a dark purple vortex) in the vanilla game's main questline has been changed to reflect his Dragonborn appearance [[spoiler:[[CthulhuMythos Yog-Sothoth Lite.]]]]
* RewardedAsATraitorDeserves: One of the late Dark Brotherhood quests has this. [[spoiler:After you poison the Emperor, General Maro arrives to tell you that you just killed a BodyDouble. He tells you that one of your own betrayed you, and set up a deal with him to keep the Empire away from the Brotherhood. However, he's angry that you killed his son in an earlier quest, and has no intentions of honoring his end of the bargain, and while trying to kill you, he's already sent a large group of soldiers to your hideout. The "traitor" turns out to be Astrid, who wanted to do this to keep the remnants of the Brotherhood alive. A later quest allows you to kill Maro, should you decide to take {{revenge}} on him for this.]]
* {{Retirony}}: Players can invoke this - bandits and similar criminal [=NPCs=] will sometimes mention their hopes to buy a secluded island and retire.
* RevengeBeforeReason: [[spoiler: The Blades insist that Paarthurnax die, despite his role in saving Skyrim from Alduin, because of his past atrocities. Refusing this request causes them to stop helping you. They do this even after Esbern chides the Imperials and Stormcloaks for nursing petty grievances, if you hold the peace conference.]]
* RevivingEnemy: Trolls and Frost Trolls will fall prone and appear dead when they have a small slither of health but continue regenerating their health... (although the fact they don't get knocked back is a bit of a giveaway). See ISurrenderSuckers for some honorable mentions.
* TheRevolutionWillNotBeCivilised: The Forsworn, though they spend most of the game trying to kill you on sight, are ''still'' arguably more sympathetic than their enemies in Markarth. They'd probably be even more sympathetic if their ''modus operandi'' wasn't "Murder everyone we don't like because we once ruled this place thousands of years ago."
** They also consort with Hagravens, conduct sinister blood rituals, and will attack the player on sight even if he or she has sworn to fight for their cause. All in all, not a nice bunch.
* TheRevolutionWillNotBeVilified: Subverted: the game opens with the Empire appearing rather overzealous in their desire to execute members of the rebellion, and most of the PC's fellow prisoners are rebels, giving the player a far better initial impression of the Stormcloaks. However, as the game goes on, it becomes quite apparent that the Stormcloaks aren't as good as they seem, being rather racist, and there's several doubts cast on their leader, Ulfric Stormcloak, and his true goals in starting the rebellion, while the Empire is shown to not be completely irredeemable but flawed. The situation soon turns into a GrayAndGreyMorality situation.
* RiddleForTheAges: The Headless Horseman. Who is he? Why does he haunt the night? What does he want? The game offers no answers.
** The game does offer some small clues, though. If you follow the horseman, he eventually leads you to Hamvir's Rest, a very remote graveyard located at the foot of the mountains southeast of Morthal. There's little of interest here, but on the northwest side of the graveyard is a tomb with an axe, a helmet, and a skull beside it (quite unusually, this skull cannot be picked up by the player), implying that this is where his remains are buried. The horseman occasionally speaks, and has unique dialogue; if he does not reach Hamvir's Rest before sunrise, he may comment, "Such an abrupt end to our game".
* RoadCone:
** Sheogorath's dialogue implies that he is [[spoiler:the Champion of Cyrodiil, so ''Shivering Isles'' was canonically completed. Some of his other pieces of dialogue imply that he became both the Gray Fox (completed the Thieves' Guild chain) and the Listener (completed the Dark Brotherhood quest chain).]]
** The player found 100 nirnroots for Sinderion, according to [[spoiler:the journal you find on his corpse.]]
** Given that [[spoiler:Clavicus Vile is in a weakened state at the time of the game]], it can be inferred that [[spoiler:the Champion of Cyrodiil ignored Barbas' warnings and gave Umbra to Clavicus in exchange for the Masque.]]
* RoaringRampageOfRescue: Thanks to the ''Hearthfire'' DLC, sometimes when the Dragonborn comes home, his/her spouse is not there and will instead be greeted by a bandit with a ransom note. [[TooDumbToLive Apparently Rochelle the Red thought kidnapping the Dovahkiin's spouse was a good idea]].
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: The Dragonborn has the opportunity to go on several of these:
** If you join the Dark Brotherhood, you get to do this on another character's behalf in the early questline, killing both a bandit leader name Alain Dufont and optionally a girl in Windhelm named Nilsine Shatter-Shield as part of a revenge scheme concocted by that mission's client Muiri, who feels that Alain, who got close to her just so he could use her to rob the Shatter-Shields (who she was a close friend of), and the Shatter-Shields themselves, who cast Muiri out afterwards, both need to pay for ruining her life. She admits she planned to do it herself, but lost her nerve and instead hired the Dark Brotherhood to exact her vengeance for her.
** Near the end of the Dark Brotherhood questline, one of your optional objectives in the final mission is to [[spoiler:kill Commander Maro, who intimidated Astrid, the leader of the Brotherhood, into betraying you, then went back on his word and orchestrated the destruction of the Falkreath Sanctuary and the killing of most of the assassins of the Sanctuary]].
** The Companions questline allows you to go on two of these, one of them against the Silver Hand for [[spoiler:killing Skjor and later Kodlak Whitemane himself]], and the other against the Glenmoril Witches for [[spoiler:their role in turning the Circle into werewolves]].
** The Thieves' Guild questline turns into one of these following [[spoiler:Mercer Frey betraying you at Snow Veil Sanctum]] and really picks up when [[spoiler:the rest of the Guild find out the full extent of his treachery and join you in taking him down]].
** One of the quests in Solitude, "Lights Out!", involves you doing a job for an Argonian pirate by the name of Jaree-Ra, involving running a ship aground so that he, his sister Deeja, and the Blackblood Marauders can loot the thing, promising you a cut of the treasure. [[spoiler:Turns out that neither of them have any intention of even leaving you alive, let alone giving you any cut of their haul -- and as an added bonus, the Blackblood Marauders have murdered everyone on board the ship despite Jaree-Ra's assurance that they would be left alive]]. The rest of the quest turns into an object lesson in why you ''do not betray the Dovahkiin''.
* RomanceSidequest: The player character can get married if they so choose.
** FourthDateMarriage: So long as you've spoken to the priest in Riften about marriage customs and have an amulet of Mara, you can get engaged to someone after having known them for all of an hour, and your sole interaction with them being beating them bloody in a bare-knuckle brawl. Most of the marriages are more complex than that, though some simply involve a fetch quest. The priest of Mara explains the custom: in the land of frigid blizzards, hungry trolls, temperamental giants, unpleasant undead, insane bears, and an endless supply of vampires, bandits, wizards, and [[BreadEggsBreadedEggs wizard bandit vampires]], the people of Skyrim don't really value long courtships - aside from the inherent lack of romanticism, one might easily kick the bucket before the courtship is complete. If you like someone, you ''tell'' them, and if they care enough about you, marriage ensues.
* RougeAnglesOfSatin: The game's conversations and book texts contain a number of errors of this nature. The "unofficial patch" mods list pages and pages of corrections.
* RousingSpeech: There are several notable ones on both sides of the Civil War.
** For a specific example, try this early speech by Ulfric Stormcloak:
-->"I fight for the men I've held in my arms, dying on foreign soil! I fight for their wives and children, whose names I heard whispered in their last breath. I fight for we few who did come home, only to find our country full of strangers wearing familiar faces. I fight for my people impoverished to pay the debts of an Empire too weak to rule them, yet brands them criminals for wanting to rule themselves! [[SunkCostFallacy I fight so that all the fighting I've already done hasn't been for nothing!]] I fight...because I must."
* RoyallyScrewedUp: [[spoiler:Sheogorath]] states that Pelagius the Mad was not normal in comparison to the average person, but he was pretty par for the course as far as the Septim royal family went.
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Ulfric fought in the Great War, put down the Forsworn Rebellion, and is now leading one side of the Skyrim Civil War. Balgruuf presumably fought in the Great War (or some other conflict) as well - he and his housecarl Irileth are [[FireForgedFriends old battle buddies]] - and he [[spoiler:eventually picks up a sword himself during the Battle for Whiterun]].
* [[RubberForeheadAliens Rubber Forehead Elves]]: Less so than in previous games, though; elves look much less human than they used to, with elongated skulls and strangely shaped and colored eyes.
* RuleOfThree: Every shout consists of three one-syllable words, each one escalating the power of the shout as they're said.
* RunningGag: M'aiq the Liar wanders the lands of Skyrim, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mxx4Qf1-Xc telling tall tales]] as usual.
** ''[[RefugeInAudacity The Lusty Argonian Maid]]'' now has a second volume.
*** And gains a SpearCounterpart spin-off in ''Dawnguard'', "The Sultry Argonian Bard".
** Your sweetrolls are ''still'' being stolen.
** Fishy Sticks return, this time as a form of meditative stance used by... Sheogorath.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:S]]
* SadisticChoice: When the beggar Narfi asks you about his sister, you can either crush his spirit by telling him the truth of her death, or fill him with false hope by lying and saying she'll be home soon, which is likely to hurt him even more in the future.
* SaveTheWorldClimax: ''Twice'':
** The first chapter of the main storyline revolves around the mystery of dragons returning. [[spoiler: Eventually you will have to defeat their leader, Alduin the literal World-Eater]]
** In the College of Winterhold questline you initially find a strange orb in a nordic ruin. It later turns out to be the 'Eye of Magnus', an immensely powerful artifact. Then it gets into the hands of an insane Thalmor mage and guess who has to take care of that...
* TheScapegoat: [[spoiler:''You'']] in the Forsworn quest chain in Markarth.
* ScaryDogmaticAliens: The Thalmor are a fantasy variant. See ANaziByAnyOtherName above.
* SceneryGorn: The southern end of Solstheim. Everything is covered in dull grey volcanic ash, a jarring contrast to the fairly vibrant colors seen in the rest of the game. Of particular note is the remains of a forest near Tel Mithryn. The charred stumps are [[ShownTheirWork all bent away from the shore, knocked over by the pyroclastic flow]] when Red Mountain erupted in 4 E 5.
* SceneryPorn: Par the course for a Bethesda game. Someone most definitely put a ''lot'' of work into the sky textures this time around. The water physics have also ''vastly'' improved. [[http://youtu.be/CQB4wkmKOv8 Case in point, this timelapse video.]] For a nice view, go to an iceberg in the middle of the northern sea, use Clear Skies, and marvel as [[TheWorldIsJustAwesome you can see from Winterhold to Solitude.]] And if you've been delving into Dwemer ruins, you'll likely have come across Blackreach... it's a sight to be seen, for sure.
** The [[http://youtu.be/ZhBBa2jLqe4 Northern Lights]].
** The view of the sky at the top of High Hrothgar when Clear Skies is used is absolutely breathtaking.
* SchmuckBait:
** Many dungeons have pedestals with objects on them. Picking them up triggers a BoobyTrap. Subverted in one case when it opens a hidden treasure room.
** One Dwemer ruin has a particularly amusing example - when you enter all you see is a single room with a bright light floating in midair. Right next to it are a couple of dead bodies, and if you have a follower, they'll say "I have a bad feeling about this," which is usually saved for boss rooms or horrible occurrences. Unsurprisingly, choosing to "Touch the Mysterious Orb" results in being caught in a trap (although it's [[NotTheFallThatKillsYou mostly harmless]], and is the only way to access the rest of the ruin).
** One dungeon contains a Word Wall with a trap door rigged to send you plummeting down into an evil necromancer's lair. Another dungeon reverses this equation by having a lethal spike trap guarding a chest which is revealed to contain only useless junk. And beneath the spike trap? [[spoiler: A spiral staircase leading to a word wall]]. Luckily, your backstabbing partner for the dungeon will take the bait if not killed.
** A stealth-oriented player can invoke this on the AI by firing arrows to draw their attention elsewhere in the room and causing them to investigate the sound. The player can then sneak by while they're distracted, or get an out of sight enemy to come into view for a proper shot.
** In Blackreach, you will find several of the giant Dwemer Centurion animunculi, inactive in their storage rigs... and a lever switch right next to them. One guess what the switch does.
** The Redwater Skooma den. A new type of Skooma? Awesome. Let's just ignore the dead bodies in some of the stalls and partake... why am I in a cell?
** As you're taking your tour of the Dark Brotherhood's Lair, you encounter a monster spider you'll probably kill out of reflex like you have dozens of others. The Dark Brotherhood will then turn on you because that was Lis, the familiar of another guild member.
* SchrodingersGun:
** A very early one whose effects can be seen immediately at the beginning of the game. During the chaos of the dragon attacking the garrison at Helgen, you can run into the keep with either a Stormcloak lieutenant or an Imperial lieutenant. If you're with the Imperial, the keep is full of hostile Stormcloaks, if you're with the Stormcloak, it's full of hostile Imperials (including the female captain that ordered your execution without trial).
* ScoobyDooHoax: Subverted in the Shroud Hearth Barrow sidequest. The "spirit" haunting the barrow is a treasure hunter who's invented a potion to make him look like a ghost to scare everyone away while he works out how to plunder the tomb... but after six months without finding a way in, he's gone crazy and thinks he really is a guardian spirit. [[note]] Though it's heavily implied that most of his insanity is a result of getting amnesia from drinking too many of his potions [[/note]] However, the barrow ''is'' actually full of Draugr and skeletons... but they're deeper in than where the treasure hunter was.
* ScrewDestiny: An interesting example since no one is certain whether it's TheHero doing this or the BigBad. Paarthurnax muses on the possibility that Alduin is the one acting against destiny by trying to end the world before its time. The vagueness of the prophecy concerning Alduin and the Dragonborn doesn't help matters. Throughout the game the Dragonborn always has the option of saying s/he doesn't care about destiny whenever someone brings it up, despite being TheChosenOne of destiny.
** This is an actual element of the setting; there are certain individuals who are born who do not have destinies at all. These individuals are able to dramatically change history simply by existing. To date, all player characters in ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'' series have been such. You can actually read a "Book of Fate" in Windhelm that is supposed to be a magical artifact that tells something about the future of whoever reads it, and that certain individuals only see blank pages because they have no fate. (It's not clear, however, if this is the truth or if the owner of the museum involved is just talking out his ass, especially as said owner is [[spoiler: the insane serial killer haunting the streets at night]].)
* ScrewTheRulesIHaveConnections: If you've worked your way through the Thieves Guild questline, guards can be bribed to forgive your crimes and erase your bounty. It's a flatrate, too, which means they'll erase bounties far higher than the payoff.
* ScrewThisImOuttaHere: The reason for the Nords' rebellion? Outrage over the White-Gold Concordant, which outlawed the worship of Talos and basically made the Empire the Dominion's bitch.
** Dragons will, on rare occasions, retreat when fighting the Dragonborn if they take enough damage.
** Having a high stamina meter will let you do this in a pinch. Especially useful for mages and in the event of a bear attack.
** Can also be pulled off by the player if there's a nearby door or passage that transitions to another area, and the enemies are too dumb to follow.
** It's a game effect as well: Fear effects on the living in the Illusion magic discipline, Turn Undead effects in the Restoration discipline, or using the [[MakeMeWannaShout Shout]] "Dismay" on anything. If an enemy has a low enough Confidence (a hidden stat, and what the magic effects work on), they may also turn tail and run as well.
* [[ScrewYouElves Screw You, Thalmor!]]: Neither the Imperials nor the Stormcloaks have much love for the Thalmor, and for ''very'' good reasons.
* SecondHourSuperpower: The Dragonborn gains the ability to use their first Shout only after completing one (relatively easy) dungeon and slaying one dragon (with significant back-up) in the storyline missions.
* SealedEvilInACan: The Dragonborn's defeat of Alduin is only temporary, as confirmed by Arngier. Alduin is, in fact, a god, and therefore will return at the end of the world, meaning all your efforts have only extended the time until the end of the world. The difference is that it will occur when the gods plan it to, rather than according to the caprices of a power-drunk domineering dragon entrusted with the task.
* SelfDeprecation: Quite a few in the ''Dawnguard'' DLC.
** Isran says "sleep is for the weak," and urges the player not to, for vampires will be able to sneak up on them. This pokes at how you could complete an entire game without sleeping, and how the only way to join the Dark Brotherhood is to fall asleep and be abducted by them.
* SelfImposedChallenge: Skipping the very first quest of the game that, among other things, unbinds your hands and allows you to pick up objects and interact with people. [[http://www.reddit.com/r/skyrim/comments/n3w4k/selfimposed_challenge_hands_bound_from_the/ Link]].
** Some roleplaying or hardcore players go the "[=DiD=]" ([[NoDeathRun Dead is Dead]]) route when playing Skyrim. If their character is killed, he or she is deleted.
* SequenceBreaking: One particular example for the quest "Lights Out!", received from Jaree-Ra. It's possible to get a random quest from Falk Firebeard, Jarl Elisif's steward, to take out some bandits in Broken Oar Grotto... which happens to be the lair of the Blackblood Marauders, the pirates Jaree-Ra and his sister Deeja are working for. You can then read Captain Hargar's journal and find out that they're looking for a fall guy to put out the lighthouse for them. You can continue with the quest anyway, and after dispatching Deeja, you'll find Jaree-Ra alone in the grotto with the dead Marauders you took out earlier; apparently he's unfazed by the fact that the crew he's been working with has been slain to a man and he just attacks you on sight. Unfortunately, there is no option to let Jaree-Ra and Deeja know you're wise to the fact that they're trying to set you up and rub it in their faces [[AntiClimaxBoss before you kill them without breaking a sweat.]]
** While exploring the Dwarven ruin Raldbthar (either on your own or as part of the ''Dawnguard'' quest "Lost to the Ages"), you will likely fight a bandit lord named Alain Dufont. [[spoiler:Turns out he's a Dark Brotherhood target, and killing him before his quest is actually initiated unlocks unique dialogue from your questgiver. It also prevents your from going after an additional target for an extra reward, though it's nothing special if you miss it.]]
* SergeantRock: [[ActionGirl Legate Rikke]] of the Imperial Legion.
* SerialKiller: One of these is on the loose in Windhelm. [[spoiler:A quick count of the skulls in his lair indicates he has killed at least 14 victims in Windhelm before you got involved.]]
* SeriousBusiness: Mead in Skyrim is serious enough that there's a budding criminal empire based around it.
** Implying that someone doesn't drink mead (a.k.a. a 'milk drinker') is a fairly serious insult in Nord culture, to the point that you can get into deadly fights with random mercs on the road who call you such.
** The ban on Talos worship. In addition to being the main impetus for the Stormcloak Rebellion, it's the one thing that Nords on ''both'' sides of the conflict actually agree on and believe should be lifted. Indeed, many Imperial-aligned Nords are shown worshiping Talos ''anyway''.
* ShapeshifterBaggage: You can put on a fair amount of bulk turning into a werewolf or vampire lord, which then vanishes when you change back. Vampire lords even have their clothes on when they turn back.
* ShellShockedVeteran:
** Salvianus, one of the mentally unstable people living in the Ratway Warrens, was a Legion veteran of the Battle of The Red Ring, the battle that ended with the smashing of the Dominion army. He's burned out pretty bad, and long since fallen into the DespairEventHorizon. [[spoiler:The poor guy freaks out big time when the Thalmor come in after you trying to find Esbern.]]
-->'''Salvianus''': No! You can't be here! You're all dead! I already killed you over and over!
** Skyrim is BRIMMING with them. Poor Salvianus is the most striking example, but Brunwulf, Runil, Madena, Galmar, and Ulfric all qualify to some extent. Ralof/Hadvar (depending on whose side you joined) also displays a touch of PTSD after the [[spoiler: Battle of Whiterun]].
* ShiningCity: Solitude, the Imperial capital of Skyrim, is this as far as Nord standards go. It's the seat of the High King, a place of wealth, culture, and power, and a thriving merchant hub.
* ShockwaveStomp: Giants and frost atronachs will do this to stun people. Giants do it with their clubs. Frost atronachs do it with their club-shaped arms. In each case, they're trying to pound you into the ground, not slamming the ground just to stun you; the shockwave is merely the result of a near miss (and a reminder, especially in the case of giants, that you really, ''really'' don't want to get hit).
* ShootTheShaggyDogStory: A remarkably short example: you find a roughly circular area where everything was torched. In the middle, a [[WreathedInFlames spell tome of fire cloak]]. [[GoneHorriblyRight Next to it,]] [[ManOnFire a burnt, doubled over corpse]]. This is one of four apprentices of the Mage College in Winterhold who recently left to perform experiments in the field. The other three can also be found; one as a corpse surrounded by skeevers, with a few scrolls of fury and calm (perhaps he tried one and found it [[GoneHorriblyRight too much a success to try the other]]), and the other two as (respectively) a frostbitten corpse and riddled with arrows, both as a result of failures to find ways to keep mead magically chilled.
** In the [[GrimUpNorth icy, Arctic-like wasteland]] near Winterhold, there is a skeleton with its leg caught in a [[BearTrap bear trap]]. Another skeleton is [[PleaseDontLeaveMe sitting next to it]], [[TearJerker looking towards the trapped one.]]
* ShopliftAndDie: While shopkeepers will draw weapons and attack (and report you for crimes) if you do take stuff in front of them, they ''finally'' don't put steal-able items in front of them so you don't accidentally bump the mouse or the analog stick and the game interprets this as theft. On the other hand, if you do steal from them and don't pay with your life... they might send thugs after you to "teach you a lesson", telling the thugs on their contract they don't have to kill you but the hirer doesn't mind if they do. That's right, the victim may try even harder than just attacking you to ensure you will die for theft even if it was something incredibly small and you paid off your bounty! Sometimes they'll even send thugs after you when there were no witnesses to prove it was you--or [[GoodBadBugs when they're dead]]!
* ShoutOut: [[ShoutOut/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Numerous.]] No pun intended.
* ShownTheirWork: ''Skyrim'' is [[http://geoheritagescience.wordpress.com/2013/01/20/the-geology-of-skyrim/ geologically accurate]], with minerals most commonly occurring in regions that they would naturally form (i.e. gold in the Reach, where there's lots of compression and mountain building, iron in Whiterun where there's lots of metamophism, etc.).
** The forts are usually found at important intersections of roads or at other important locations.
* ShutUpHannibal: Can be evoked in some boss fights, occasionally combined with KilledMidSentence. Ulfric also drops a very satisfying one [[spoiler:on Elenwen, if you let her stay during "Season Unending"]].
* SillyReasonForWar: PlayedForDrama. One the surface, the Civil War is about religious freedom and humanity's fight for survival against evil elves, started by the Empire signing a peace treaty with the Thalmor that bans Talos worship. The Stormcloaks accuse the Empire of being oppressed [[StupidSurrender elven puppets]], while the Empire accuse the Stormcloaks of being racist [[UnwittingPawn elven pawns]]. The thing is, the Empire never enforce the ban except in the most flagrantly public of instances; practically every house in Skyrim has a small Talos shrine inside, and heck, even many of the Imperial high command still worship Talos in secret. And no matter how much they hate each other, ''[[ScrewYouElves they still hate the Thalmor more]]''. To make matters worse, the pro-Empire High King Torygg is speculated to have actually agreed with Ulfric, if Ulfric merely asked instead of shouting the King to death. So in practice, the war is being fought over who wants to openly worship Talos and fight the elves right now, and who wants to worship Talos privately to buy time and gather strength and fight the elves when they're ready, and everyone is so caught up in blaming each other and accusing the other of being wrong that they won't admit that the whole mess is utterly pointless and [[MagnificentBastard playing right into the Thalmor's hands]].
* SkeletonsInTheCoatCloset: [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Dragonbone equipment]]. There's really nothing more appropriate than killing dragons with the bones of other dragons you've already killed. There's even unique dialog for it from the final boss.
* SlaveRace: The Falmer spent many generations as slaves to the Dwemer before rebelling and warring with them until, for unrelated reasons, the Dwemer all disappeared. [[spoiler: The Dwemer were so thorough in their enslavement of the Snow Elves, who turned into the Falmer, that now only ''two'' remain... and one of those is a vampire.]]
** The Falmer have no qualms with giving the same treatments to humans. Human slaves can be found in the Falmer stronghold of Blackreach.
** As of ''Dawnguard'', Pure-Blood Vampires views humans as both free labor ''and'' a renewable food source.
* SlouchOfVillainy: In the mission where you're vetted for the Dark Brotherhood, your observer Astrid spends the whole time lounging on top of a bookcase, lazily swinging one foot.
* SmashMook: Giants. All they can really do is swipe at you, stomp on you and hit you with their clubs, but you ''[[HomeRunHitter really]]'' [[OneHitKill don't want]] to be on the wrong end of those clubs.
* SmugSnake: Thonar Silver-Blood. Even [[spoiler:his wife getting murdered]] makes him no less unsympathetic, and seeing him get explosively atomised by Forsworn magic is ''immensely'' satisfying.
* SoftWater: Played with. Landing in water will break your fall to some extent but don't expect a quarter inch of water to save you from dying from a long fall. It has to be deep enough for you to swim in at least, and maybe even deeper if you want to survive longer falls.
* SoLongAndThanksForAllTheGear: On occasion, a quest will prevent a follower from tagging along. Sometimes, the follower will just announce that he/she will be waiting where you found them but sometimes, the follower just won't be there when you go through a door or talk to a certain person. This can be maddening if you have them carrying something important for you, like a weapon too heavy for you to carry or specialized gear you bring for specific situations. Also, it's ''not'' unheard of for [[GoodBadBugs the game to "lose" them]]. It's possible for followers to "die" on the way back to the meeting spot or to get glitched someplace else, which is the final nail in playing this trope straight.
* SolveTheSoupCans: Played with. The puzzle to unlock a specific quest item consists of four buttons that move elements of the machine holding it when you press them. The solution is actually simple: press one button until one of the covered buttons opens, press the new button until the other covered button opens, and then press that button to open the machine. However, even though you can see what's happening with each button press, the goal in pressing them and what is actually happening isn't very clear. When the puzzle is done you can see your objective was to align the lenses overhead with the ones on the floor, but they aren't positioned in a way that looks like they're aligned, you know they are only because the next button opens. There's also two buttons at the start and the two other buttons that eventually open up, so just pressing one button at a time over and over runs counter-intuitive to what most players will assume, that there's a particular combination.
* SophisticatedAsHell: At the end of Sheogorath's quest: "Feel free to keep the Wabbajack. As a symbol of my... Oh, just take the damn thing."
* SpaceCompression: With a little bit of ThrivingGhostTown. Major battles are fought by dozens of men rather than, say, hundreds, and the cities aren't exactly huge. These are mostly AcceptableBreaksFromReality, though, and pretty par for the course for an ''Elder Scrolls'' game by now anyway.
** Particularly noteworthy in ''Skyrim'' is the complete removal of about 4-5 small towns entirely from the world map, and 3 are now just random inns along the road. This wouldn't be so notable if it wasn't for the fact that one of towns reduced to an inn was Old Hroldan, which was the site of a major battle that would be the start of TheEmpire. The game even mentions that Hroldan should be a town and calls attention to it with a quest due to its historical significance with Talos.
* SpamAttack: If you time your castings right, you can put out an impressive volume of fire with two-handed non-dual-cast Destruction spells. Special shout-out goes out to a [[ReviveKillsZombie non-destruction-school attack spell]] provided by Dawnguard: [[LightEmUp Vampire's Bane]], which charges up ready to cast even faster than the Destruction spells, allowing you to put out a blinding amount of area-effect LightEmUp damage and emptying your magicka bar in very short order.
* SpannerInTheWorks: ''You''. Multiple times.
** Thieves' Guild: [[spoiler:Mercer would have easily been able to dispose of Karliah and then leave the Guild high and dry while he makes off with the loot if the player never came into the picture.]]
** Civil War: [[spoiler:The Thalmor wanted to stretch out the civil war to drain the resources from both sides so that they could eventually and easily conquer Skyrim, but the Dragonborn appears and brings a decisive end to the battle in favor of either side, allowing their defenses to recover and prepare. So now the Thalmor have to face a fully prepared army led by a PhysicalGod.]]
** [[spoiler:Alduin pretty much ruined Tullius's clean capture and execution of Ulfric in the beginning of the game. It would likely have ended the civil war then and there.]]
** Very annoyingly, dragons do this ''all the time'' by attacking you out of nowhere. Even if you survive the encounter, there's still the chance of a dragon killing an NPC you were trying to talk to/protect.
** The Dark Brotherhood, should you elect to destroy it rather than join it.
* SpearCounterpart[=/=]DistaffCounterpart: Thongvor Silver-Blood and Maven Black-Briar. Each is the head of a commercially successful family - who owes that success to shady and illegal dealings. Maven works with both the Thieves' Guild and the Dark Brotherhood; Thongvor employs mercenaries to bully mine owners and Forsworn assassins to silence his enemies. Both are replacement Jarls for their respective holds if said holds change sides. In both cases, they have so much influence in the hold and have bribed the local guards so successfully, they arguably [[IOwnThisTown have more power over the town than the rightful Jarls do]]. Also, each of them have goons in town who will warn the player of their respective family's influence over the town (Maul for Maven, Yngvar the Singer for Thongvor), and said goons become Housecarls if Thongor/Maven become Jarl.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: If you have subtitles enabled, a lot of characters' names are misspelled. Special mention goes to Sanguine's [[spoiler:mortal avatar, whose last name has been spelled "Guenvere", "Gueyenne", and even "Guinevere" when it's supposed to be "Guevenne".]]
* SpiderSwarm:
** While they aren't explicitly stated as collective creatures, and no Queen has been featured yet, you usually meet Frosbite Spiders in large numbers. They usually are met by group of five, but you can easily meet several groups in the same dungeon, as well as one giant one as an occasional boss.
** Then ''Dragonborn'' gives us the Albino Spiders and their variants, which are all significantly smaller but much more numerous than the Frostbites.
* SpikesOfDoom: Everywhere. You can't [[HoldYourHippogriffs swing]] a dead [[CallARabbitASmeerp skeever]] without hitting a spike trap in some dungeons.
* SpikesOfVillainy: The daedra and daedric armor. Falmer and Forsworn equipment are also pretty spiky and evil-looking; the Falmer don't seem able to make huts that ''aren't'' covered in spikes. But then, the Falmer do make everything out of chaurus chitin, and chaurus ''are'' spiky by nature.
* SpiritualSuccessor: The Dragonborn Expansion can be seen as this to Morrowind's Bloodmoon. As they both take place in Solstheim, both have quests involving the Falx Carius and Fort Frostmoth. And both expansions are the only times you'll run into the Skaal.
* [[spoiler:SpiritWorld: Sovngarde is real, and you can go there.]]
** [[spoiler:''Dawnguard'' features Soul Cairn, a graveyard-like hell (well, Oblivion Realm) which houses victims of black soul gems. More accurately, the remnants of their souls go there after the main part of their souls are used in enchantments. Makes for a subtle PlayerPunch if you use them a lot.]]
* TheSquadette: Gender makes very little difference in ''most'' professions, but standard nameless town guards or Imperial/Stormcloak soldiers have about a 1:7 ratio of women to men.
* SssssnakeTalk: Averted! Argonians have a slight rasp to their voices, but otherwise speak completely normally this time. They don't even mutter "The prey approaches!" anymore if they don't like you. They sometimes hiss in combat, but it lacks words.
** The males have a slight rasp to their voice. Females sound like they've been smoking three packs a day for the last ten years.
* StealthBasedMission: Ideally, most of the Thieves' Guild missions are set up to be completed by stealth and guile rather than brute force; enemies are often much stronger than you can take on in multiples at your current level and are better off backstabbed or avoided entirely. However, as Black-Briar herself puts it, all that matters is results, so you ''could'' run around in the open stabbing enemies if you feel like it.
** In ''Dawnguard'', one of the Dawnguard's radiant quests requires you to eliminate a vampire disguised as a civilian, but it must be done stealthily, otherwise the guards will view it as a murder.
* StealthPun: Dragons' powers, such as breathing fire, are powered by speaking words of their ancient language. The game describes this as "deadly verbal debate", or in other words, a flame war.
* StealthRun: As noted above, this is encouraged by the Thieves' Guild, but the Dark Brotherhood also encourage this to some extent, and a large number of quests can be completed this way, if the player so chooses. [[spoiler:Boethiah]] demands you do this for her quest, though there are no consequences for being detected.
* SteamPunk: Dwemer fortresses and MiniMecha. Technically they're {{Magitek}}, so either the steam is [[ExcessiveSteamSyndrome entirely cosmetic]], or the magic is just providing the energy, with the steam actually driving the machinery.
* StockShoutOuts: For ''Skyrim'', arrow-in-the-knee references.
* StormingTheCastle: The ''second'' main plotline (the CivilWar) culminates in you doing this to your opposing faction. Also, the good path of [[spoiler:the Dark Brotherhood has you pulling one on their Sanctuary.]]
* StoryDrivenInvulnerability: Alduin. Also happens for many, many others, either for the whole game or until their parts are done. This is particularly vexing after the civil war plot is resolved; you are as-good-as-told to find the remaining enemy camps and wipe them out, but each one will be overseen by an "Essential" enemy leader who cannot be killed.
* {{Stripperiffic}}: Refreshingly averted (mostly), since the female armor actually looks like it could protect vital areas in combat [[JustifiedTrope (also, it gets cold in Skyrim)]]. Don't worry though, there are plenty of mods that are all over this trope.
* StupidCrooks: The bandits who pretend to be Legion soldiers. Trying to squeeze "taxes" from either a Stormcloak or a real Imperial Legion officer who also happens to be the walking divine intervention against giant fire-breathing god-lizards is not a good idea.
-->"I am in the Legion and I am damn sure you are not!"
** Similarly, the random Thieves encounter. Especially if you're both a member of the Thieves' Guild and wearing the armour at the time they try to rob you. You can point this [[FailedASpotCheck obvious oversight]] out to them, but if you're the Guild-Master, you get the infinitely better option to shake ''them'' down for money for having the gall to try and rob their boss!
* StupidityIsTheOnlyOption: One quest that involves tracking down the corpses of a fallen expedition into a Dwemer ruin includes the objective to find and activate the Dwemer defenses, namely their golems, which you then must fight to escape. However, justified - in a NiceJobBreakingItHero moment, the player killed the giant spider that was stopping the Falmer from invading Markarth from below, so reactivating the defenses is necessary to prevent this from now happening.
** In both the Companions' quest and the College of Winterhold quest, you have to activate something that would lock you into the room with no way to get out without a scripted scene. There is absolutely nothing you can do to avoid this; the only way to proceed is to use the event flag to open the doors to go further.
** Same with the Thieves' Guild[=/=]Nightingale questline, where [[spoiler:you need to jump into a pit with no way out, and you can find the skeleton of the last guy who did the same and ''starved to death''. Good thing you picked up that Skeleton Key, right?]]
** This ties in nicely with StoryDrivenInvulnerability for some questlines. In the Winterhold quest you encounter [[spoiler:Ancano, who has Thalmor spy written all over him in big glowing letters and is a pompous, arrogant JerkAss to boot. You can't kill him until he almost brings about the destruction of the college and the town of Winterhold.]] May also count as YouCantThwartStageOne.
* SuccessionCrisis: The death of Skyrim's old High King led to this. The new High King is supposed to be elected from among the nine Jarls, but with a civil war going on, nobody is willing to convene the Moot to hold the election.
* SuddenlyVoiced: Later [[spoiler:the dragons speak English.]]
** GameplayAndStoryIntegration: [[spoiler:As the Dovahkiin is tutored by the Graybeards and kills more of the dragons, he understands more of the Dragon Tongue, so [[LeaningOnTheFourthWall this extends to the player as well]]]]. It is also likely that dragons understand some amount of the language spoken in Skyrim and switch between this and their own language when speaking to humans, as many people unfamiliar in a language often do. [[spoiler:Dragons which actually speak to you - Paarthurnax and Odahviing - will swap midsentence; but Alduin and a few of his named lieutenants will do so depending on whom they're speaking to.]]
* SuicidalOverconfidence: Aside from what we've grown to expect, occasionally [=NPCs=] will try to pick a fight with you, accepting which starts hand-to-hand combat. While all this is by no means unusual, said [=NPCs=] will pick fights with you even after it becomes known nationwide that you're the Dragonborn - which means you've killed at least one huge dangerous dragon. This doesn't seem to faze them. They'll also challenge Khajiit (who have huge claws) to unarmed combat.
* SummonBiggerFish: As noted above under StupidityIsTheOnlyOption, clearing out one Dwemer ruin of the Falmer that would invade the connecting city requires the player to activate the Dwemer golems, which will then wipe them out. The golems, at least, will stay in the ruin.
** [[spoiler:At the the end of the main questline, the player can do this at will in an open area with Odahviing, a dragon that has pledged to serve you until you die.]]
* SuperMode:
** The Werewolf and Vampire Lord forms fit this mold, particularly with the ''Dawnguard'' DLC. Werewolf form, in particular, is time-limited, and you have to feast on the corpses of your fallen (non-undead, non-construct) enemies to maintain it, lest you revert to your original race... quite naked and unarmed.
** You can craft your own SuperMode through Alchemy - the right combination of potions could vastly boost your regeneration of health, stamina and magic, heal you, make you more resistant to damage, ''do'' more damage with your chosen weapon, and a host of other effects - until it wears out.
** With the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, the "Dragon Aspect" Shout sets the Dragonborn into overdrive, vastly increasing the power of their Thu'um and the amount of damage dealt with weapons, as well as covering them in a set of ethereal Dragonbone armour.
* SurplusDamageBonus: Any damage done to an enemy over its total health will translate into [[WreakingHavok physical momentum]], to the point where hitting a nearly dead enemy with a strong attack will make it shoot across the room.
* SuspiciousVideoGameGenerosity
** The ''Dawnguard'' DLC gives you a quest to find a lost Aetherium Forge. There's a cache of potions at the door to the Forge itself, right before you face a rather formidable amount of enemies and a particularly punishing boss fight.
** There's a couple of prominently placed Resist Shock potions placed right before the door where you have to face Potema's council of draugr while a giant beam of electricity circulates around the room.
* SwordBeam: In the DLC ''Dragonborn'', you can find part way through a dungeon a unique Two-Handed sword that launches Sword Beams with each power attack. Said beams are mainly used to solve a puzzle, and aren't all that strong, nor is the sword in comparison to higher tier equipment, but still, [[AwesomeButImpractical SWORD BEAMS!!!]]
* SycophanticServant: Cicero
[[/folder]]

[[folder:T]]
* [[TakeAThirdOption Take a Fourth Option]]: In the quest "With Friends Like These..." you are locked up in a cabin by the Dark Brotherhood and may only leave when you kill either a Khajiit gangster, a Nord mercenary, or an insufferable old widowed mother. Or all three. [[spoiler:Or the Dark Brotherhood member ordering you to kill them. She even lampshades this by saying that you may only leave when 'someone' dies.]]
* TakesOneToKillOne: The only way to permanently kill a dragon is for another dragon (regardless of whether it has the body of a mortal or that of a dragon) to devour its soul.
* TakeThatPlayer: M'aiq the liar reappears [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mxx4Qf1-Xc once more]].
* TakeThatUs: In addition to telling off fans, M'aiq even takes cracks at ''the developers''.
-->"Nords are so serious about beards. So many beards. M'aiq thinks they wish they had glorious manes like Khajiit."
-->"M'aiq carries two weapons, to be safe. What if one breaks? That would be most unlucky." [[note]]A reference to weapons breaking from use in earlier games of the series.[[/note]]
-->"M'aiq is very practical. He has no need for Mysticism." [[note]]The Mysticism school of magic, a longtime mainstay of the series, was removed for ''Skyrim'', with the spells mostly shuffled into Conjuration.[[/note]]
-->"It does not matter to M'aiq how strong or smart one is. It only matters what one can do." [[note]]Before ''Skyrim'', TES games used an attribute system in addition to skill levels.[[/note]]
-->"M'aiq loves the people of Skyrim. Many interesting things they say to each other." [[note]]The highly repetitive NPC chatter of ''Oblivion'' drew quite a bit of criticism.[[/note]]
-->"M'aiq saw a mudcrab the other day. Filthy things." [[note]]A reference to a much-parodied bit of WelcomeToCorneria from Oblivion.[[/note]]
** The scatterbrained court mage of Riften may babble that "once, you could find calipers all over Tamriel, but not anymore!" Which is yet another thing M'aiq can comment on.
* TakeUpMySword: [[spoiler: The Harbinger of the Companions posthumously appoints the Dragonborn as his successor.]]
* TakeYourTime: No matter what you're doing or how urgent it seems to be, you can put it on hold and go off and spend months of game time doing something else. Delphine will wait patiently for you to attend a party while you're busy working your way through the ranks at the Thieves' Guild or the Mage College. The only thing that seems to be time sensitive is how long your followers will wait for you before returning home.
* TatteredFlag: A skeleton can be found in Winterhold clutching one, apparently from the last stand of the Knights of the Nine.
* TeamPet: Lis the frostbite spider, in the Dark Brotherhood sanctuary.
* TeleportingKeycardSquad: On a much larger scale. Due to the way quests work in this game, the item the NPC sends you to fetch may not necessarily exist in the dungeon they point you to beforehand, especially if you've murdered your way through it once before. As such, if the NPC sends you to a dungeon you've already happened to clear, the game will repopulate it so you still have to fight your way through it. In some cases, there may in fact be more enemies than when you did it the first time.
* TeleportSpam:
** Some Draugr bosses, such as Sigdis Gauldurson and Halldir. Jyrik Gauldurson also does this on his second encounter.
** Orchendor, the priest of Peryite, at the end of "The Only Cure."
** Mercer Frey appears to do this, but in fact he's just using invisibility.
** Lord Harkon in ''Dawnguard''.
* TempleOfDoom: The Nordic tombs and Dwemer ruins.
* ThemeMusicPowerUp: Fighting a dragon seems half as hard when you are backed by [[CrowningMusicOfAwesome a barbarian choir praising your awesomeness]].
* ThemeTuneCameo: A variation. The lyrics for "Dragonborn" can be found in-game in the book ''[[http://www.uesp.net/wiki/Skyrim:Songs_of_Skyrim Songs of Skyrim]]'', along with a translation.
** Ironically, the tune that goes with the lyrics has been lost to time in-universe. [[CaptainObvious You know, that tune you have probably heard a hundred times over.]]
* ThereIsAnother: While the Prophecy of the Dragonborn heavily implies that you are the ''[[LastOfTheirKind Last]]'', Arngeir seems to suggest there might be another. Finally confirmed in the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, which deals with the ''First'' Dragonborn seeking to return.
* TheyWalkAmongUs: Plenty of examples. You can be talking to a character and have no idea that you're conversing with a vampire, werewolf or daedra. There are ways to root them out, such as casting Detect Life or going into quests which expose them; but going by appearance, sound and behavior, you'd never know.
** That is until ''Dawnguard'' is installed, then all vampires gain glowing orange eyes.
* ThisIsGonnaSuck: You know pain is coming when Lydia utters this line (or whatever follower you're with uses their variation):
-->'''Lydia:''' I've got a bad feeling about this.
* TieredByName: Many enemies in ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim'' have auto-leveled variants distinguished from the base mook by some power ranking slapped after the name. For example: Draugr Wight, Draugr Deathlord, Reaver Marauder.
* TheFaceless: Miraak's face is never shown. Even after you kill him, [[spoiler: you eat his soul, so his flesh dissolves, meaning you still can't see his face even after looting his gear.]]
** [[spoiler: Console commands, however, reveal that he's a Nord, with receding hair and BlackEyesOfEvil, the latter presumably a side-effect of either learning too many of Hermaeus Mora's secrets or spending too much time in Apocrypha]].
* ThievesGuild: It's not doing well in this game.
* ThirdPersonPerson: The entire Khajiit race.
* TimeSkip: By far the largest one so far. With ''Oblivion'' taking place only forty years after ''Arena'' (the very first game), the previous four games were extremely close together in the ''Elder Scrolls'' timeline.
* TimeTravel: [[spoiler: Alduin couldn't be defeated the last time someone fought him, only sent forward in time to a point when there was someone who ''could'' defeat him - namely, the Dovahkiin.]] The Dovahkiin travels [[spoiler:the opposite way]] on two separate occasions.
* TitleDrop: Done for an individual quest. During peace negotiations in "Season Unending," Ulfric may warn Tullius, "Remember, Evgir unslaad", which is Dragon tongue for "Season Unending." In other words, "This [war] isn't over".
** A little bit earlier during the same quest, Arngeir also does a TitleDrop. He tells you that he hasn't much faith that these negotiations will produce lasting peace, as the ancient Nord words for war translate to "season unending".
* TooDumbToLive: Many bandits and criminals who get involved with the Dragonborn. Here are examples:
** Arvel the Swift in Bleak Falls Barrow is probably the first example of this trope you encounter. After you save his life and free him from the web he's encased in, he'll refuse to hand over the [[PlotCoupon Golden Claw]] and run recklessly ahead into a cave that at this point has proven to house all sorts of dangers, potentially pissing off someone who was skilled enough to kill a GiantSpider. Even if ''you'' don't kill him, he'll inevitably awaken all the Draugr up ahead, who will happily do the deed themselves. And if he somehow survives the Draugr gauntlet, he won't survive the swiveling spike wall trap tied to the pressure plate switch his running route takes him right over. Swift in ''body'', maybe...
** In Ravenscar Hollow, you find a raider in a cage who begs you to free him from the Hagravens who imprisoned him. After dealing with the Hagravens and freeing him, he attempts to mug you. The one who just took on three Hagravens. And he wears nothing but rags. And he doesn't attack you without announcing it.
** Similarly, the mad necromancer in Rannveig's Fast smugly explains how he's going to kill you while slowly walking away with his back to you. The number of players who let him finish his speech is likely very low.
** Following the Thieves' Guild storyline, some bandits in [[spoiler:the Pilgrim's Path]] come under this. [[spoiler:Stealing from Nocturnal is not exactly recommended at the best of times, but they really couldn't have picked a worse place than her conduit to Mundus.]]
** The random 'your money or your life' type of thieves you encounter in the wilderness. Sometimes they see you fight and kill a dragon, and then decide it's a good idea to attempt to rob said dragon-slaying badass. You can tell them that they're literally ''not worth your time'' and they will ''still'' attack you.
** A female dark elf in a dungeon asks you to clear the way for her. The dungeon is full of undead and dangerous traps, and she has only basic clothes and maybe a low grade dagger. After you've done all the work, she rushes into the main chamber, shouting "It's my treasure! Mine!", and runs right into the most deadly trap in the dungeon. The "treasure" is in fact the lure to said trap, containing mostly worthless loot, while the trap itself reveals a staircase to the ''real'' treasure: [[spoiler:a Word Wall, which would have been useless to her anyway.]]
** One of the wizards at the college attempts to recreate the circumstances that led to the extinction of the Dwemer, who have vanished from reality. You find him the materials, he begins the experiment and... he vanishes from reality. Uh, [[GoneHorriblyRight success]]?
** Malkoran, a necromancer, sets up shop in [[EldritchAbomination Daedric Prince]] Meridia's temple. Meridia is a very powerful godlike being, and she passionately ''hates'' the undead - and those who would raise them.
** During the College of Winterhold questline, an aide of Ancano's follows you to Labyrinthian and waits at the exit to try to take the artifact you've just collected. Because clearly, someone who can survive a trek through a centuries-old tomb filled with ghosts, Draugr, and an ''undead dragon priest'' is going to be a complete pushover.
** Rochelle the Red for getting the [[SarcasmMode brilliant idea]] of kidnapping the Dragonborn's spouse.
** Just about any dragon who thinks it's a good idea to attack the College of Winterhold.
** Sunderstone Gorge is a cavern complex absolutely full of burning oil and other flammables. It is inhabited by a group of fire mages, who apparently cannot make the obvious equation.
* TomeOfEldritchLore: The Black Books from the ''Dragonborn'' DLC.
* TookALevelInBadass: All races, especially Bosmer, Argonians and Khajiit.
** Mudcrabs are bulkier, hardier, hide buried in riverbeds before bursting out to attack, and can inflict noticeable damage this time around.
** [[FinishingMove Finishing moves]] and DualWielding make conventional combat significantly more brutal than before and offensive spells now include [[StarWars Sith-style]] chain lightning, [[IncendiaryExponent setting yourself on fire]] to burn anyone who gets close, and hurling yard-long icicles that impale people!
** Remember Netches from ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind''? Those flying jellyfish with hitboxes twice their size that were fairly easy to kill despite their InformedAbility to be dangerous? Well, now, as of the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, they really ARE dangerous.
** "I've played ''Daggerfall''. Those giants [[TemptingFate shouldn't prove too much of a problem]]... uh, why am I suddently on the moon?"
* TookALevelInJerkass: The Altmer (high elves) go from snobbish and stuck up to truly astounding levels of dickery, even ''before'' you include the Great War and the White-Gold Concordat. For example, they've annexed Valenwood and vassalized Elsweyr, making the Bosmer and Khajiit into servants. Also, if you kill one of their kind, ''just one, even if he just tried to destroy the world,'' they'll put out a hit on you.
** That describes the Thalmor, the government of Alinor/Summerset Isle and the Aldmeri Dominion. Altmer not hailing from the Dominion tend to be slightly less dickish, if for no other reason that they [[NoTrueScotsman aren't true Altmer to the Thalmor]].
** The Blades. There are only two in game, but for people whose purpose is to ''serve'' the Dragonborn they have an odd tendency to treat you as a lackey, making demands and presenting ultimatums unless you follow those demands.
* TorchesAndPitchforks: When they learn about the vampire lair close to their town, the inhabitants of Morthal decide to form a mob and confront the vampires, complete with torches (but sadly no pitchforks). However, when you get to the lair the mob chickens out, sending you inside on your own.
* TownWithADarkSecret: Markarth. [[spoiler:At least half of the townspeople are [[ImAHumanitarian humanitarians.]] One of them even tends a meat stall, which has the slogan of 'Bloodiest Beef in the Reach']].
** You've also got the Forsworn, who [[BlatantLies are totally not killing people in the street]] [[spoiler: or anyone who opposes [[IOwnThisTown the Silver-Blood family,]] and are [[BlatantLies totally not]] working for [[BoxedCrook Madanach, who's totally not locked in the Silver-Blood mine/prison.]]]]
* [[TrademarkFavoriteFood Trademark Favorite Drink]]: Mead, for most Nords.
** There's even a song about it. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCHq0m67lq8]]
* TrashTalk: Apparently a time-honored tradition in Tamriel - literally everyone in Skyrim will taunt you in a fight, including the ''dragons''. The "Throw Voice" shout also allows you to mock and confuse your opponents with ventriloquism.
** Alduin is particularly fond of it. This is not surprising, given that he's a ridiculously arrogant, semi-divine dragon. If you hear the word ''joor'' (mortal) come out of his mouth, it's a good bet he's mocking you.
* TraumaInducedAmnesia: A [[spoiler:cannibal]] priestess claims that the Dovahkiin has repressed memories of [[spoiler:losing a sibling when they were children, and [[ImAHumanitarian eating the corpse out of curiosity.]]]] Whether or not this is true is up to the player to decide.
** Her whole spiel runs into a bit of FridgeLogic if [[spoiler:the Dovahkiin is a werewolf running around eating people to stay in beast form, or even just a dedicated alchemist who ate some human flesh to find out what potions they could make from it. Or if they're a Bosmer, for whom cannibalism would be a normal and accepted part of their race's culture]].
* TreacherousQuestGiver: ''Many''.
* TreasureMap: You can filch some off bandits, leading you to hidden chests.
* TrialByCombat: To get into Shor's Hall in Sovngarde, you first have to give your credentials to the guard, then fight him to half health.
* TrickArrow: In the ''Dawnguard'' DLC, you get to find Dwemer schematics for enchanted crossbow bolts. [[MadeOfExplodium Exploding fire arrows]], anyone?
** Quite often, these exploding crossbow bolts are recoverable from the corpse of whatever was shot with them. An exploding arrow that rematerializes afterward is perhaps the trickiest of all.
* TrophyWife: In the orc stronghold Dushnikh Yal, Chief Burguk's latest wife, Shel, is all tarted up, and basically does nothing but be the Chief's arm candy. His other wives man the defensive walls and work the forge with their respective children by Burguk.
* TryEverything: One of the two ways you find out an alchemy ingredient's properties is tasting it to learn the first property. The other way is by combining it willy-nilly with whatever else you have on hand; the game helps you with this by keeping track of combinations you have already tried and greying them out. The Experimenter perk makes tasting items more efficient, eventually revealing all four properties if you get all three ranks.
* TwentyBearAsses: Temba Wide-Arm goes halfway towards a literal example, requiring you to bring her ten bear pelts.
* TwentyFourHourArmor: Not only is the player character free to wear the same set of heavy plate armour all day and every day, the guards of holds can be seen sleeping in their armour in the hold's barracks. They don't even take off their full-face helmets.
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([[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Return to Skyrim main page]])
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[[folder: N]]
* NakedPeopleAreFunny
** Unintentional example. Until the 1.9 patch, a GoodBadBug sometimes caused the courier to make his deliveries [[http://steamcommunity.com/id/StarSword_C/screenshot/452848015066825877 wearing nothing but a hat and a loincloth.]] It renders him rather ComicallySerious.
** The 100 skill level perk for Pickpocket lets you steal equipped items, [[http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2011/12/09/skyrim-naked-friday-in-whiterun/ like clothing]].
* NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast:
** '''''Alduin, the World Eater.'''''
** Dirge and Maul, two thugs employed by the Thieves' Guild.
** One of the followers is named '''Ghorbash''' ''The Iron Hand''.
** All the named Dragon Priests, in Dragon language at least: Hevnoraak (Brutal), Krosis (Sorrow), Morokei (Glorious), Rahgot (Rage), Nahkriin (Vengeance), Volsung (Horror/Air Horror), Vokun (Shadow), and Konahrik (Warlord).
*** With Dragonborn, we get Ahzidal (Bitter Destroyer), Dukaan (Dishonor), and Zahkriisos (Sword Blood/Finite Kill Blood/Bloody Sword). Only Vahlok (Guardian), Qahnaarin (Vanquisher) and [[spoiler:Miraak (Allegiance Guide)]] break the tradition.
** All named dragons.
** The Dark Brotherhood, which is also nicknamed the "Black Hand" after their personal symbol. Bonus points for the rite to call them being called the "Black Sacrament".
** They call Molag Bal the '''King of Rape''' for a ''reason''.
** The Dragonborn. There is a reason they are called "[[TheDreaded The One They Fear]]".
* NamesToTrustImmediately: Subverted with Grelod the Kind. Played (arguably) straight with Elisif the Fair.
* NaturalWeapon: Khajiit and Argonians both get a boost to hand-to-hand combat due to their claws (though the former get a larger boost than the latter).
* NecessaryDrawback:
** Lycanthropy renders you immune to all diseases (outside of a glitch) and gives you a powerful werewolf form. In exchange, the player can never get resting bonuses from sleeping, the werewolf form levels separately from the player's normal form, the interface is completely disabled except for the skill tree while transformed, and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking you have to listen to everyone complain about the signs of it]].
** Vampirism is similar. Contracted vampirism gives the player a number of cool abilities, but it's regulated by lack of feeding and going too long without it renders everyone hostile to you, forcing you to balance your feeding carefully. Sunlight also cuts off your ability to regenerate magicka, health, and stamina barring enchanted apparel or potions. The more powerful Vampire Lord introduced with ''Dawnguard'' removes the hatred weakness and gives you a transformation even more versatile than the werewolf form.
* TheNecromancer: You encounter a fair number of these in Skyrim, most of them enemies. And with the right spells and perks, your Dragonborn can be one.
** [[spoiler:Alduin himself is this to his draconic brethren, and is the reason that the dragons are returning to Skyrim]].
* {{Necromantic}}: [[spoiler:Calixto Corium]], the Butcher of Windhelm, who commits serial murder in order to [[spoiler:gather parts to create a new body for his beloved sister]].
* TheNeedForMead: Naturally, being a fantasy Norse-like culture, mead abounds. Skyrim has two major brands of mead, Honningbrew (brewed near Whiterun) and Black-Briar (brewed in Riften), and a generic "Nord Mead". In one sidequest, a group of drunks lambast you if you favor Black-Briar Mead over Nord Mead. If you share bottles of Honningbrew instead, they will be overjoyed and give you a magical amulet as thanks. Jarl Siddgeir of Falkreath, on the other hand, hates Nord mead (he calls it "local piss") and asks you for a bottle of Black-Briar to prove your worth.
-->'''Random Bandits:''' Mead, mead, mead. Would it kill 'em to get a beer now and again? Stupid bees and their stupid honey...
* NeverForgottenSkill: As of the Legendary update, the game has this trope. Once you've learned a spell, you will always know it, even if you reset the skill. Keep in mind that Master-level spells require you to be at level 90 to unlock the associated quest for them, and most Adept and Expert-level spells do not appear until you've passed 50.
* NeverSayDie: The game is very weird about this. While characters obviously have no problem saying "kill", "death", "murder", or variation thereof, the journal entries always provide the objective to "defeat" the enemy, never "kill" the enemy.
* NeverTrustATrailer: The trailer on characters seemed to depict General Tullius as an ObstructiveBureaucrat who didn't pay any heed to his subordinate's advice.
* NiceJobBreakingItHero:
** During the Companions' questline, after [[spoiler:Skjor is killed during a raid on a Silver Hand encampment, Aela the Huntress sends you on a campaign of targeted vengeance against the rest of the Hand. This results in the Hand launching an attack on the Companions while you're away finding a cure to lycanthropy for Kodlak so he can enter Sovngarde when he dies, rather than be claimed by Hircine. And of course, Kodlak is the only casualty, and now his death as a werewolf means he cannot enter Sovngarde. To make matters worse, the Silver Hand also absconded with all but one of the fragments of Wuuthrad, the axe of Ysgramor that the Companions were guarding, and only Wuuthrad can open the way to the place where lycanthropy can be cured.]] Luckily, this is all fixable. [[spoiler:Even Kodlak's lycanthropy can be posthumously erased.]]
** To explore the Dwemer ruins beneath Markarth, you first have to get through a nest of frostbite spiders. At the end of the nest, guarded by a huge spider, you find a dead Legion soldier, with a note on him describing an expedition that delved deep into the ruins. [[spoiler:If you follow the quest to find the missing researchers, you find the ruin crawling with Falmers, and, as one journal says, the spider nest was the only thing keeping them from flooding into the city. Your next target after that is to fix the problem you just created... by firing up all the dormant Dwemer animunculi to kill them.]]
** In "The Blessings of Nature", if you choose to manipulate the Eldergleam in order to access your destination, [[spoiler: you also give life to a number of Spriggans who turn hostile on both you... and some friendly visitors who were only there to confine themselves in the peace and tranquility of the grove.]]
** In "The Forsworn Conspiracy," choosing to [[spoiler: aid Madanach in escaping the mine]] will likely end with [[spoiler: about half of Markarth dead as angry Forsworn rampage through the city on the way out.]]
** Bringing the mysterious artifact from Saarthal back to the College of Winterhold [[spoiler: results in the death of its Archmage and his assistant, near-releasing a dormant dragon priest, destroying part of the College and ravaging the countryside, and nearly causing the world to end.]]
** As you progress through the game, you learn that the Stormcloak rebellion is in large part responsible for bringing the Thalmor's attention to Skyrim in the first place. They might never have bothered to enforce their ban on Talos worship if Ulfric hadn't started a civil war. Related to this, if Ulfric had talked to Torygg instead of killing him, he might have been persuaded to declare independence and no war would have been needed in the first place. Justified since [[spoiler:the Thalmor instigated the Stormcloak rebellion in the first place to weaken the Empire and to give them an excuse to establish a foothold in Skyrim for their eventual invasion. Though they are concerned that Ulfric is becoming too successful.]]
** When the Dragonborn ventures to [[spoiler: Sovngarde]] in hot pursuit of Alduin, it's discovered that [[spoiler: to regain his strength, Alduin has been feasting on the ''enormous'' number of souls that have been caused by the Civil War. If the war has been won in the name of Ulfric before this point in the game, Legate Rikke can be found in Sovngarde despairing on how all the Legion's war did was make Alduin stronger. Ulfric has the same view if the war is completed for the Imperials.]]
* NiceJobFixingItVillain: Alduin inadvertently saves the Dovahkiin's life [[spoiler:during the starting sequence when he attacks Helgen]].
** In ''Dragonborn'', before embarking on their planned assassination of the "False Dragonborn", one of Miraak's cultists makes sure to carry written instructions with them mentioning both Miraak and Solstheim. From this, the Dragonborn is ''[[SarcasmMode surprisingly]]'' able to figure out who wants them dead and where they are from!
* TheNightThatNeverEnds: The goal of Harkon, the lead vampire in ''Dawnguard''. [[spoiler: He fails, thanks to you, but you can blot out the sun for a day by dipping your arrows in Serana's blood, then shooting the sun with Auriel's Bow.]]
* {{Ninja}}: The Dark Brotherhood armor has a distinctly ninja-like vibe to it this time around. Kinda appropriate when you think about it.
* NinjaRun: Sprinting while dual-wielding any one-handed weapons becomes this.
* NoArcInArchery: A ''very'' subtle aversion. While most players have been [[RealityIsUnrealistic trained by other games that arrows fire in a straight line]], in this game, if you do this you may often find yourself missing. Unlike in most games that do have arcing arrows (like, say, ''Oblivion''), the arrow is not fired directly at your cursor, but somewhat above it, so that a mid-range shot will hit where the cursor is pointing. For long ranged shots, you need to aim at or slightly above your target, as arrows fall due to gravity as they fly; for short-range shots it may be necessary to aim slightly ''down''. If you pay close attention, you might notice that the arrow's path tilts slightly toward the nearest enemy in the targeting cross-hair. This can be a problem if you're trying to set up long range lead shots at moving targets, as the the arrow will hit where the enemy ''was'' rather than where it will ''be.''
** Somewhat less averted with Crossbows in ''Dawnguard''. These fire a bit more straight than regular bows, making them a bit more attractive to players used to this trope.
* NoCampaignForTheWicked: Neither the Thalmor nor the Forsworn can be joined, despite both being arguably valid factions in the Civil War questline.
** On the other hand, inverted by the Dark Brotherhood questline - while you can in theory side against them, all you get is one short mission with no significant rewards, compared to the lengthy and detailed Dark Brotherhood campaign itself. Particularly painful if playing a good-aligned character who wouldn't go near an organization like the Dark Brotherhood; you miss out on all the achievements related to that questline.
** On top of that, there's no way to go against the Thieves' Guild or Maven Black-Briar. The fact that Brynjolf forces the first of the Thieve's Guild quest on you the first time he sees you (which is pretty easy, as he stands in the center of Riften every day) has caused a few mods to pop up ''specifically to invoke this trope'' just so they wouldn't be accosted by him.
* NoHeroDiscount: Averted in a sense. While being a good person doesn't net you a discount when it comes to purchases, merchants for whom you've done favors will allow you to take some items off their shelves without considering it stealing, and they regularly restock. As long as an item's name isn't red when you interact with it, help yourself with no repercussions!
* NoKillLikeOverkill: [[spoiler: Near the end of the Dark Brotherhood questline, you return home to find Penitus Occulus Agents sacking the Sanctuary. Festus was one of the first to fight back, and he was [[RainOfArrows pinned to a tree by nearly 40 arrows.]]]]
** Some quests have an optional rider of "wiping out X" where X is the enemy faction. Some have bonuses that can later be used (such as obtaining more Glenmoril Witch Heads) while others are entirely up to you. [[spoiler: Similarly, in the Dark Brotherhood quest, you are free to kill Commander Maro for his treachery as an optional condition to the quest, and you are also free to completely annihilate everyone on the Emperor's ship if you so choose, depending on how much retribution you want. Neither of these actions will earn you a bounty, even if you do them in plain sight of the guards.]]
** The Master-level Destruction spells, but in particular Firestorm and Blizzard. The former is basically a fantasy nuke centered on you, obliterating anyone without fire protection in the area. The latter conjures up a devastating hailstorm that constantly chews away at the health of everyone within the vicinity. Both will pretty much guarantee that you kill anything and everything with an HP bar dead. The problem is this would often kill friendlies too, which will cause everyone you didn't hit to start attacking you (and possibly racking up an impossibly huge bounty). This makes both of them completely unusable if you're running around with allies, or fighting in a neutral zone with people you don't wanna piss off.
* NonMammalMammaries: The Argonian females, again.
** Also, Flame Atronachs and Spriggans. Flame Atronachs do at least have the excuse of being Daedra, to which different sexes are nothing more than a mortal contrivance and they simply choose to take a female form because of their whim (as is the case for Daedric Princes too).
* NonNudeBathing: A few hunters can be seen relaxing in the hot springs south of Windhelm in their underwear.
* NoOntologicalInertia: ZigZagged. Attacking summoners and necromancers plays this straight: their zombies and/or atronachs will vanish or disintegrate. However, unlike in ''Oblivion'', where the gates vanish after banishing Dagon, [[spoiler: the dragons are still around after you kill Alduin.]] Justified in that [[spoiler: Alduin ''revived'' a bunch of dead dragons, but he isn't ''keeping'' them alive.]]
* NoobCave: Helgen Keep and the adjoining caverns. Several locales around Riverwood are also toned down in difficulty.
* NoodleImplements: After winning a staff in a drinking contest, the guy you made the bet with leaves you a note saying he needs a hagraven feather, giant's toe, and holy water to fix the staff. [[spoiler:[[SubvertedTrope It turns out to be an elaborate prank on his part.]]]]
** The Dark Brotherhood "radiant" conversations about their assassinations are ''full'' of these. The flow goes that one will mention where they went, and then...
-->But really. A horker, some twine, three wood elves, and a hatchet? Points for creativity, if nothing else.
-->It's the part with the severed head I find most impressive. My compliments.
-->I'm just trying to imagine you hiding inside the body of a mammoth. Bloody brilliant idea.
** The "shopping list" you find in [[spoiler:Mercer's home]] looks like one: [[spoiler: [[BreadEggsMilkSquick Milk, Goat Cheese, Turnips, Cauterizing Agent, Eggs, Flour, Cheese]]]]
* NoodleIncident: Unlike the previous games, this time we know why and how the player character ended up being imprisoned. However, it's unclear why the player character was crossing the border into Skyrim in the first place, nor is there any set canon on whether or not the player ever did anything more illegal than just being around a bunch of Stormcloaks. (Dialogue at a few points will let the player decide this, but it's just for flavor.)
** There's a bard named Talsgar wandering the wilderness. If you find him, you can ask him for speechcraft training, but he'll refuse, saying something about an incident with a roguish lad and the daughter of a prominent thane.
** The "radiant" conversations for the Dark Brotherhood members are basically nothing but a huge pile of noodles; see directly below.
* NoSell: If you hit an atronach with a destruction spell of its elemental alignment, it just stands there. It doesn't aggro, it doesn't stagger. You get a notification that it "resisted" the attack too.
* NoSenseOfDirection: Plautis Carvain and Salonia Carvain, two Imperial nobles who are on their way from Cyrodiil to Solitude to attend a wedding. You can encounter them all over Skyrim, except near the place they need to be. In fact, they'll never make it to Solitude and instead end up in Windhelm, which lies in the northeast of Skyrim, while Solitude lies in the northwest. Quite the accomplishment, because while Skyrim is a big place, sticking to the main roads and following the signs normally gets you where you need to be.
* NostalgiaLevel: Solstheim, for veterans of ''Morrowind'' and ''Bloodmoon''.
* NothingIsScarier: This game can be very unnerving when it goes this direction.
** There are a couple dungeons where someone has [[AlreadyDoneForYou already gone through and killed some of the enemies inside]]... you almost always expect some kind of noise to happen (or to run into a bandit or Draugr) and it seems really unsettling when they're all gone.
** Golldir's backstory. When he was a kid, his father (or brother, it's vague) locked him inside his family's tomb for almost a week. Just imagine, you're a little kid, locked in a massive crypt with nothing but dead bodies all over. Scary, right? Now imagine having this happen in the ''Elder Scrolls'' universe where Zombies and Draugr are an everyday occurrence.
** Dwemer ruins are often full of hallways lined with hatches on the floor and ceiling that constructs can come out of. You know at least one of them, likely more, is going to spit something out at you, but which one is a mystery. And some of them wait for you to pass by before the construct appears.
* NoticeThis: Nirnroot doesn't just glow, it ''chimes''.
** All dragon words literally glow, have a vortex of wind that clouds your vision of everything ''but'' the word as you get close; and if that doesn't clue you in, the crescendo [[OminousLatinChanting chorus of dragon words]] will.
*** Lampshaded in the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, where one of the walls is buried under the red mountain ash, but you can hear the chorus calling you.
* NotMeThisTime: During the "Diplomatic Immunity" mission, you can ask someone to do you a favor and distract everyone at the party so you can sneak off. Unless you're asking Razelan himself (who gives a sarcastic toast) or Erikur (who hits on a serving girl), the distraction will usually consist of the person walking up to Razelan and accusing him of saying something horrible. Razelan protests, claiming that ''this'' time he's completely innocent! It's an example of this trope because Razelan is a notorious drunkard, so whatever he's being accused of saying would not be out of character for him to say, it's just that ''this'' time he didn't actually say it.
* NoTrueScotsman: Heard on both sides of the Civil War. The Stormcloaks believe that the Empire is weak, that no true Nord would surrender to the Aldmeri Dominion or agree to the White-Gold Concordat, while the Imperial-allied Nords believe that Skyrim has always been a loyal part of the Empire and no true Nord would be only a fair-weather ally.
** Dragons too. [[spoiler: Alduin fleeing from the player after being beaten at the Throat of the World makes other dragons question his leadership, as a ''true'' dovah would either die fighting or submit to his superior.]]
** If you're a [[MySpeciesDothProtestTooMuch High Elf]] Dragonborn, Thalmor goons will utter some phrases to this effect at you as you have at them.
* NotSoDifferent:
** General Tullius and Ulfric Stormcloak are on opposite sides of the Civil War, but both hate the Thalmor and the White-Gold Concordat, which bans the worship of Talos, one of the main reasons Ulfric rebelled.
** This is also exemplified by the bard songs "Age of Aggression" and "Age of Oppression", sung by bards in pro-Imperial or pro-Stormcloak holds, respectively. The song tunes are identical and both songs have parts where the lyrics are the same.
** Try saving before the peace treaty and take different dialogue options to favor the Empire or Stormcloaks, and make note of how often the two sound just like the other between dialogue trees.
** If you finish the Civil War before the final battle, [[spoiler:you'll meet Rikke if you sided with the Stormcloaks, or Ulfric and Galmar if you sided with the Empire, in Sovngarde. It seems as far as the gods, or at least Shor, is concerned, they're all honorable heroes worthy of the afterlife. Tullius is only excluded because he's not a Nord and so couldn't enter Sovngarde.]]
** Paarthurnax points this out to the Dragonborn, as s/he has the soul of a dragon and therefore is driven by the same urges as all dragons: to hurt, kill, dominate, and destroy. Takes on an extra-vicious edge if you've been indulging in VideoGameCrueltyPotential by that point.
* NotSoHarmlessVillain: In the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, Hermaeus Mora shows us what he does to people [[BerserkButton who try to keep secrets from him.]] [[ImpaledWithExtremePrejudice The results are not pretty.]] We also get to see what he really looks like.
* NotTheFallThatKillsYou: Some incredibly long falls can be survived just by dropping into SoftWater, such as [[BottomlessPit Kagrenzel]] and Bard's Leap (although the latter is said to have killed many people who tried to make it before you).
** The lethality of the most famous [[MakeMeWannaShout Shout]], [[BlownAcrossTheRoom Unrelenting Force]], is not from the blast wave but from the potential of inflicting this. If the sudden stop at the end doesn't kill a foe outright, oftentimes they'll still be really hurtin'.
* NotUsingTheZWord: They're called "Draugr", a name taken from NorseMythology.
** Averted with the Zombies ''you'' raise, however.
* TheNudifier: One of the random effects of Sheogorath's "Wabbajack" staff is to strip an enemy of their armour.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:O]]
* ObfuscatingInsanity: Jarl Idgrod Ravencrone of Morthal purposely adopts the persona of an eccentric old mystic. [[spoiler: If you've already ingratiated yourself with her and ask for her help during "Diplomatic Immunity", she'll use this to provide a hilarious distraction to allow you to infiltrate the Thalmor embassy]].
* ObviousBeta: While not to the level of ''Daggerfall'', this game is close. For starters, it has many, many broken quests, wonky user interface issues (especially in the PC version), and is very poorly optimized both CPU and GPU wise. The PC version requires a fanmade EXE patch to curb most of the [=CTDs=] by extending the memory allocation cap (this has been fixed in an official patch; it now is large-address-aware by default), and the PS3 version can suffer dramatic save game bloat and subsequent crashing/corruption issues. The game also has bad default settings, including a default field of view that gives many players motion sickness.
** The earlier patches also introduced some additional serious glitches, including the notorious "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xCjK3BD6u4 Backwards-Flying Dragons]]".
* OddFriendship: In ''Dawnguard'', this can potentially occur with Serana (Vampire) and the Dragonborn (Vampire-Hunter).
** If you've contracted lycanthropy through the Companions questline and refused to cure it either at Ysgramor's Tomb or when Harkon offers to turn you into a Vampire Lord (staying loyal to the Dawnguard), this relationship's oddity can be taken even [[FurAgainstFang further]].
* AnOfferYouCantRefuse: When you return Meridia's Beacon, she will task you with purging her temple of the necromancer defiling it. Your character can lampshade that they have little option but to accept, given she makes this offer [[spoiler:while magically suspending you above the clouds]].
* OffingTheOffspring: Done in a very twisted and tragic fashion, by a certain man in Morthal. Turns out [[spoiler:it was an enthralled vampire who actually did the act, but he himself was also enthralled to not give half a donkey's ass about it.]] Ironic because children can't be killed in the game.
** Lord Harkon's plan in ''Dawnguard''.
** Part of the Night Mother's backstory in the Dark Brotherhood questline.
* OffscreenMomentOfAwesome: "Hold on, Dovahkiin! [[DragonRider Prepare to see Skyrim as you never have before!]]" Take flight, rise into the air, Nord choir begins, and... cue loading screen.
** Bethesda later fixed their mistake by adding dragon riding to the ''Dragonborn'' DLC.
* OffWithHisHead: Happens to one unfortunate Stormcloak. Almost happens to you before [[spoiler:Alduin]] unwittingly saves you by attacking the town, causing the execution to be interrupted right as the headsman is poised to swing. You can also watch another beheading when you first enter Solitude.
** There are perks in the one-handed and two-handed trees that let you decapitate your foes.
* OhCrap: "Never shoulda come here!"
** Also with the very first dragon the Dragonborn will slay.
---> '''Mirmulnir''': "Dovahkiin!? No!"
** When you fire an arrow at mid-long range, the target becomes "alerted" and is reported as such in your HUD for the split second between the point where they hear the arrow being fired and the point when the arrow actually hits. One can only imagine what's going through their head... before the arrow does.
* OmnicidalManiac: The Thalmor are attempting to unmake the Mundus by stamping out belief in Talos, which will help them break the last of the pillars holding up reality. In the College of Winterhold questline, Ancano attempts to shortcut this process using the Eye of Magnus.
* [[OminousLatinChanting Ominous Draconic Chanting]]: A rare heroic version in the Dovahkiin's/Dragonborn's theme songs: ''Sons of Skyrim'' and ''One They Fear'', as well as ''Watch The Skies'' which alternately plays when a dragon attacks.
* OneWomanWail: Night Theme 6, combined with some Ominous Chanting and bits of DroneOfDread.
* OnlySmartPeopleMayPass: Subverted with the combination locks on the claw-operated doors in Draugr barrows. One of the books you can read in-game contains speculation as to why these puzzles were made so easy (the combination is engraved on the key itself). The answer, according to the author, is that the combination is there in order to ensure that the door is being opened by a sentient being, rather than a mindless undead. In other words, the doors aren't there to keep people from getting ''in'' = they're there to [[SealedEvilInACan keep things from getting]] ''[[SealedEvilInACan out]]''.
* OohMeAccentsSlipping: Erandur slips between an American and Australian accent. This may be deliberate, as he's hiding a DarkAndTroubledPast.
* OpiumDen: Redwater Den. It's a Skooma bar that while being by otherwise innocent addicts, is run by sadists who drug their personal brand, take said unconscious victims into a jail below to be turned into Vampire Thralls.
* OptionalStealth:
** During the tutorial, you and your companion come across a sleeping bear. The NPC will advise you to sneak past it (thus teaching you the Sneak mechanic), but he also hands you a bow and suggests you could just try and kill it.
** The Thieves' Guild will dock your pay if you get caught or kill someone during Delvin and Vex's side missions, but for the purposes of the main quest, no one minds if you choose to hack or blast your way through the areas where you're supposed to be stealthy.
** Boethiah's quest is stated by the goddess herself to be a stealth mission, with her telling you to kill all the bandits in the mine without them seeing you; but it doesn't matter if they see you or not, as once you get the Ebony Armor, the quest ends with Boethiah using the same dialogue.
** Subverted during the Companions' questline when you and Vilkas storm the Silver Hand's hideout; good luck sneaking up on anything with him around, since [[LeeroyJenkins he just runs in and attacks]] as soon as he's aware of the enemy's presence.
* {{Orichalcum}}: Primarily used by Orcs. Because... they start with the same letters?
* OrphanageOfFear: Honorhall Orphange, run by Grelod [[IronicNickname the Kind]] [[spoiler: until/unless she gets killed. By the Dovahkiin]].
** OrphanageOfLove: [[spoiler:Once Grelod is out of the way, the much kinder Constance Michel (herself another poor soul who chafed under Grelod's tyranny) takes over tending the orphanage.]]
* TheOrder: The Imperial Legion. And you can join it again!
** The Blades, too. Though unlike in ''Oblivion'', you can't join them, as the Order proper has long since fallen apart and almost entirely died out. Plus they are nominally supposed to ''serve'' you, as their purpose is to serve a Dragonborn and you are the last Dragonborn (not that this oath of "service" stops them ''demanding'' that you kill [[spoiler: Paarthunax]], and refusing to talk to you or help until you do). Though you ''can'' help [[OrderReborn rebuild the Order]] by recruiting new members for them after a certain point, and have them accompany you on Dragon-slaying missions.
** The Dawnguard.
** The Companions also qualify, at least to an extent. FlavorText on one of the {{Loading Screen}}s even points out that the Tamrielic Fighters' Guild has no presence in Skyrim, but the Companions make up for it.
* OpposedMentors: In ''Skyrim'' you have the choice of being backed by the Greybeards (who are {{Actual Pacifist}}s) and the Blades (who want to slay every single dragon in existence). In the end [[spoiler: the Blades ask you to kill the dragon who serves as the mentor to the Greybeards, forcing you to choose one side or the other. Siding with the Blades gives you access to dragon-hunting potions and skills, and the option to fight a dragon whenever you want, while siding with the Greybeards allows you to skip the Civil War questline (making you not have to side with either the Stormcloaks or the Legion) by negotiating a temporary truce. It's also an argument of practicality/caution versus idealism/loyalty. Despite being a generous and helpful ally who has done ''nothing'' to slight you, Paarthurnax ''is'' a dragon, and even though he tells you that he's reformed, he also makes it clear that he fights to retain control of his aggression every single day and that it's wise not to trust him.]]
* OurDemonsAreDifferent: And with LargeHam to boot!
-->'''"A CHALLENGER IS NEAR!"'''
* [[OurDragonsAreDifferent Our Dovahhe Are Different]]: The Dragons, who rather than have the usual BreathWeapon, [[LanguageOfMagic speak their abilities into reality]]. So they say the Draconic word for "fire" and fire appears.
** You've got a regular rainbow of dragons running around, too. There's your standard garden-variety Black Dragons; blue Frost Dragons, which are more sinister-looking; green Blood Dragons, which kind of look like iguanas; bronze-colored Elder Dragons, which look bulkier than the other dragons; and the most powerful of all, red and black Ancient Dragons, which have thick armored plates instead of scales. ''Dawnguard'' adds two more classes even more powerful than the Ancients: Revered Dragons (which look almost snake-like with rows of spines, empty eyes and shiny pink skin) and Legendary Dragons (like the Ancient Dragons but with a more intense black-and-orange color scheme and having four eyes in one socket).
** Beyond the visual, Dragons are like Tolkien's Elves, who will live for as long as Time itself lasts, to the point where the very idea of mortality is incomprehensible to them. [[spoiler: That very inability to understand mortality was weaponized into a Thu'um, Dragonrend.]]
** Rather than have 4 legs and 2 wings, they have just 2 legs and their wings have clawlike hands, making them more wyvern-type dragons.
** Inverted during a conversation with Paarthurnax:
-->'''Paarthurnax''': Do you know why I live here, atop the mountain you call the "Throat of the World"?
-->'''Dovahkiin''': I don't know. Dragons like mountains, right?
-->'''Paarthurnax''': Hmmm... True.
* [[OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame Our Dwemer Are All The Same:]] [[PlayingWithATrope Played with]], as per ''Elder Scrolls'' norm. While the Dwemer ''were'' reclusive master smiths who lived underground, did not get along with most elves, and had long beards, they are also currently extinct, were master [[{{Steampunk}} steam engineers]] - a trait more commonly associated with [[OurGnomesAreWeirder gnomes]] these days - and were actually a subrace of elves themselves. They also weren't particularly short; they got their moniker of "Dwarves" from giants, not men.
* OurElvesAreBetter: To start, they're not called 'elves' at all. 'Elf' is a nickname Men gave them; they're actually called Mer. Aside from the Altmer (High Elves), Bosmer (Wood Elves) and Dunmer (Dark Elves), there's also the [[OurOrcsAreDifferent Orcs/Orsimer]]. [[SubvertedTrope They still act like regular fantasy orcs, though.]]
** In addition to the three playable Mer races, there's also the Falmer (Snow Elves), Maormer (Sea Elves), Dwemer ('deep ones', the Dwarves), Chimer ('changed ones', ancestors to the Dunmer), and Aldmer (the precursors to all Mer races). Of all these, only the Maormer are still around; the Dwemer disappeared after the War of the First Council, all at the same time. Theories vary wildly on just what happened. The Falmer were slaughtered ''en masse'' by the first Nords to arrive in Tamriel, which drove them to the Dwemer, who enslaved them. After the Dwemer disappeared, the Falmer took their cities as their own, becoming mutated, twisted versions of their former selves (essentially they are now [[OurGoblinsAreDifferent the game's version of goblins]]). The Chimer became the Dunmer after Azura cursed them at the end of the War of the First Council, due to the Tribunal betraying Indoril Nerevar (possibly killing him) and using the Heart of Lorkhan for themselves. The Aldmer, of course, became the various Mer races. Only the Maormer remain, on a continent to the south of Tamriel.
** Each Mer race has their own little quirks, as well. For example, the leaders of the Altmer, the Thalmor, want to [[OmnicidalManiac unmake the physical plane entirely]], and the Bosmer are [[ImaHumanitarian cannibals]].
* OurGhostsAreDifferent: After a certain point in the Dark Brotherhood questline, [[spoiler:the ghost of Lucien Lachance]] from ''Oblivion'' becomes a summonable companion. He has been dead for a little over two centuries, but apparently he fully retains all of his memories. This is likely an attempt to please the fanbase, given the fact that he's an immensely popular character, especially among [[MrFanservice fangirls]].
* OurGiantsAreBigger: Giants are enormous humanoids about three times the size of humans. They are roughly comparable to cavemen, and form camps with mammoths, which they apparently use as pets, guard animals, and a source of milk and cheese. Giants are generally peaceful unless you intrude into their camps, though you periodically get bounties on giants that have been stealing cattle or raiding farms. Otherwise, [[BullyingADragon anyone provoking a giant]] [[MegatonPunch gets exactly]] [[TooDumbToLive what they deserve.]]
** Alternatively, [[VideoGameCrueltyPotential you're attacking a peaceful giant, who would never attack you if you just left it alone.]]
* OurLichesAreDifferent: Dragon Priests, ancient Dragon Cultists who [[LesCollaborateurs sided with the dragons in ancient times in exchange for power and cool magical masks.]]
* OurVampiresAreDifferent:
** Vampirism is a contracted disease that eventually turns you into a traditional blood-sucking fiend, but in an inversion from the typical rules, the strength of your powers is proportional to how hungry you are. This results in a careful balancing act as you become more conspicuous to townsfolk as your hunger increases. Vampires in ''Skyrim'' also show a marked preference for ice magic and cold environments.
** ''Dawnguard'' introduces a new version of vampirism which is much more powerful than in the standard game; both Harkon and Serana give you the option of acquiring it. Unlike regular vampirism, it will cure your lycanthropy if you're a werewolf.
* OurWerewolvesAreDifferent: As with ''Morrowind'', they're the man wolf variety. If you become one [[spoiler:by accepting the Companions' offer]], you can transform regardless of the time of day, but the transformation only lasts for 210 seconds, plus 30 for every human you eat while transformed. ''Dawnguard'' adds a skill tree mirroring that of the Vampire Lord mentioned above.
** ''Dragonborn'' adds were''[[BearsAreBadNews bears]]'', which are essentially shorter, stockier werewolves. They're also universally hostile and, unlike lycanthropy, the condition causes insanity.
* OurWightsAreDifferent: Wights and [[MonsterLord Wight Lords]] are magic-using variants of Draugr who can sap your stamina and health with Frost spells.
* OurZombiesAreDifferent: No, they're not zombies, they're ''Draugr.'' And they're cursed with undeath for having served Alduin the first time around - at least, some of them are; others may have origins closer to what was indicated in ''Bloodmoon'', the game that introduced them. (In this series, "zombie" usually refers to magically revived corpses by necromancers.) Draugr are closer to {{Mumm|y}}ies than zombies in many ways, as they are artificially preserved and haunt cursed tombs, and many have magic powers of their own (including Shouts). They also bear many similarities to the Draugr of Norse mythology.
* OutsideContextVillain: Alduin. Skyrim was in the middle of a long and bloody civil war when the World-Eater and lord of all dragons showed up out of nowhere and began resurrecting long-dead Dragons from their burial mounds. Justified in that we later learn [[spoiler: he was sent through time from the Merethic Era to the Fourth Era via an Elder Scroll]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:P]]
* PaperThinDisguise:
** A quick look around the room and it's pretty obvious which of the corpses lining the walls are going to stand up when you pass by. Hint - the ones wearing armor and carrying weapons.
** You in the Dark Brotherhood storyline. Because the chef you're impersonating is an aloof mysterious figure that no one has ever seen (because he's an orc), you can show up as any race, dressed in anything from [[BlackKnight Daedric Armor]] to a Jester's outfit, and no one will question it. Your assistant will only ask that you put on a chef's hat to cook (even though you're just telling her what ingredients to add.)
** One of the possible random encounters in the outside world is a group of thieves that killed Imperial guards, stole their equipment, and pretend to be them while trying to charge taxes. [[BlatantLies Not only are the naked corpses of the guards still nearby, the hesitant way they speak is very easy to see through]]. If you joined the Imperial side of the war, there's even a dialogue option where you tell them you ''know'' they're not soldiers.
** "Captain" Valmir is a Thalmor agent posing as either an Imperial or ''Stormcloak'' soldier (depending on the player's standing with either faction). The latter is especially egregious since he's obviously an Altmer, and the Stormcloaks are not known for being the most tolerant of other races, especially elves.
** With the ''Dawnguard'' DLC, vampires become incredibly obvious, with glowing yellow eyes and twisted faces, while somehow maintaining their ability to pass as normal. This can [[HilarityEnsues lead to hilarity]] when the local Jarl demands proof that the visiting advisor with glowing yellow eyes, wearing what the game calls Vampire Robes, Vampire Gloves, and Vampire Boots, might possibly be a vampire. This also completely blows the cover of resident FriendlyNeighborhoodVampire [[spoiler:Sybille Stentor]].
* ParentalIncest: An intrepid player can piece together some very {{squick}}y hints about the Black-Briar family: Maven has three children, Hemming, Sibbi, and Ingun. She calls them her children, they call her their mother. However, Hemming will also refer to Sibbi and Ingun as ''his'' children, and peeking at the character files shows that Maven is designated as Sibbi and Ingun's ''grand''mother. It's possible that this is just an oversight, as this ''is'' a [[GoodBadBugs Bethesda]] game, but they've yet to clarify the issue and thus the implications remain, whether erroneous or intentional.
** Given that Sibbi is AxeCrazy and Ingun is fond of [[MasterPoisoner poison]], this actually would explain a ''[[RoyallyScrewedUp lot]]''.
** An alternate explanation is a FamilyRelationshipSwitcheroo in which Hemming is actually their father and Maven is their grandmother, but for whatever reason it was more socially acceptable for her to pretend that he's their brother and she's their mother. Again, as there is no spelled out explanation for this, the implementation of either of these tropes is ambiguous.
* PetTheDog: You can do this for Braith, the brat in Whiterun who always remarks "What're you lookin' at? I'm not afraid of you, ya know. Even if you are my elder." If she should become orphaned for whatever reason, you can adopt her in the ''Hearthfire'' DLC.
* PhysicalGod: Alduin takes the form of a dragon, [[spoiler:and is the Nordic aspect of Akatosh, as well as his firstborn (despite being older). Therefore, he is the physical incarnation of an aspect of Time itself. He is unable to be slain within the bounds of Mundus.]]
* PhysicalHeaven: [[spoiler:Sovngarde.]]
* ThePlace: Takes place in Skyrim, natch.
* PlaceboEurekaMoment: Talking to Wylandriah, the Riften Court Magician, shows that she's having trouble developing a soul extraction apparatus. By [[BavarianFireDrill acting like you know what you're talking about]] through the use of "metaphors," she quickly {{Magi Babble}}s her way to a solution. [[spoiler:She promptly forgets what you were discussing.]]
* PlantPerson: Spriggans are a hostile, [[BearsAreBadNews bear-summoning]] variety. They're often found in certain wooded groves, can turn nearly invisible (or turn into swarms of bees), and when near death, revive themselves to full health with magic. (They did that back in ''Daggerfall'', too. "Spriggans die three times.") In this case, at least if you kill them quickly you avoid the revivification.
* PlayingPossum: Some Draugr like to hide in alcoves with the (completely) dead Draugr, only getting up after you've walked passed them. It works if you aren't paying attention, but the only ones that do this are the ones wearing armor and it's easy to catch them in the act. Then you get free hits until they stand up.
* PointAndClickMap
* PoliceAreUseless: In regards to you at least, there may as well not be any guards in town. As long as you don't commit any major crimes like murder, guards can be bribed through use of a perk or your membership with the Thieves' Guild, and if you're Thane of the settlement, you can pull rank to get them to leave you alone (but only once). If you've committed a minor crime, like trying to break into a locked house or stealing a potion, you can just convince them you aren't worth the time. Walking around town while you have a small bounty will prompt mutters of "wait, I know you" from guards you pass, but none of them will actually try and apprehend you.
** And then you find a single lone thief in Riften cowering in the corner of the blacksmith's cellar surrounded by [[NoKillLikeOverkill twenty armed guards,]] [[ThisIsGonnaSuck all with bows raised and arrows nocked...]]
** The guards would be able to defeat most, if not all intruders in town, which includes thieves, vampires, werewolves, bandits and even dragons (at high level, that is.)
* ThePollyanna: Shahvee, despite living in the docks of Windhelm, with the Nords being intensively prejudiced towards her race and being paid a pittance for her work, is very cheerful and upbeat. In her own words, "There's nothing to be gained by being miserable."
-->''"Sometimes life puts you in difficult circumstances you didn't choose, but being happy or unhappy is a choice you make, and I've chosen to make the best of things that I can."''
* PoweredByAForsakenChild: All active Dwemer automatons in Skyrim are powered by filled Soul Gems. [[spoiler:And it turns out the souls in Soul Gems are still conscious, and in constant agony. And might only be necessary to power the ''weapons,'' with the actual motion being powered by some other mechanism.]]
* PowerCopy: A variation. You learn a Word of Power simply from hearing someone speak it or reading it on Word Walls, but you can't "decode" them without using the knowledge in a dragon's soul. So it's a two-part deal: steal their voice weapon, then steal their ability to use it.
* PowerGlows: All enchanted items have a colored glow around them.
* ThePowerOfTheSun: With Auriel's Bow and sun-hallowed arrows, you can fire arrows directly at the sun itself, causing it to ignite and rain fiery bolts upon all your enemies. Alternately, you can use this same bow to squelch the power of the sun with bloodcursed arrows.
* PragmaticVillainy:
** Members of the Thieves' Guild tend to abstain from murder and strongly encourage you to do the same in their quests - not because they have anything against it, but because it's bad for business. They leave that sort of thing to the Dark Brotherhood, unless it's an in-house issue.
** In one quest, they send you out to intimidate a wealthy estate for cutting off the honey to Maven by destroying some of the beehives. If you destroy ''too many'' hives though, your superior will chastise you for it because now ''you're'' responsible for no honey.
* PreviousPlayerCharacterCameo: In the Daedric quest "The Mind of Madness", Sheogorath mentions that he was present during the Oblivion Crisis (and mentions knowing Martin as well), which implies that the player character from ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion'' is still effectively the Daedric Prince that you meet in the quest. Strangely, Sheogorath appears and speaks with the same voice and mannerisms as the original Sheogorath from the ''Shivering Isles'' expansion, either due to RuleOfFunny or to resolve that game's own CharacterCustomization, which is similar in scope to Skyrim.
* ProudWarriorRace:
** The Nords are the most prominent example, the game being set in their homeland. Part of the tension between Skyrim and the Empire comes from the Nords seeing the Empire's surrender to the Thalmor as a cowardly betrayal.
** The Orcs are like this, with special mention going to the old Orcish warrior you can find standing by the road, surrounded by dead sabre cats, waiting for someone to give him a "good death."
** The Redguards are supposed to be one, although this isn't as thoroughly explored. Their pride in warrior ways seems more focused upon skill with weaponry than bravado or testing how much punishment they can take.
* {{Pride}}: A central motif in ''Dragonborn'' is how pride influences people with regards to enemies and power, and ultimately whether or not they can look past it. The player character is attacked and further insulted by people who claim they are not the true Dragonborn and is later able to [[spoiler: recognize that they need Hermaeus Mora's help]]; Bujold is reluctant to acknowledge her own shortcomings and weaknesses; the Riekling Chief isn't and both supplicates the Dovahkiin and considers them a threat; [[spoiler: Storn is willing to look past his pride as a Skaal (who have resisted Hermaeus Mora for eons) for the greater good.]] On the villainous end, Miraak shows more arrogance and hubris than possibly any other character in Skyrim, simultaneously plying the Dragons and then Hermaeus Mora for power, only to immediately thereafter act as if the alliance is beneath him and that he shouldn't need to honor it. He even claims that Alduin is nothing more than an annoyance to him, in spite of it being extremely unlikely he knows how strike at Alduin. On the other hand, Hermaeus Mora shows himself to be extremely humble, giving the Dovahkiin rewards in exchange for their efforts, encouraging them to search his realm for tomes of power and later, [[spoiler: in spite of Miraak's treachery, displays a willingness to work with whichever Dovahkiin comes out alive and, in this conversation at least, barely even taking notice of Miraak's loathing for his present situation.]]
* PunchedAcrossTheRoom: Give your Khajiit character two perks in Heavy Armor, the best gauntlets you can get, and enchant them and a ring with Fortify Unarmed. Go seek out some bandits or wildlife. C'mon, it'll be fun.
* PunctuatedForEmphasis:
** Fully upgraded dragon shouts have enough emphasis to send enemies flying through the air ''and even slow time''.
-->'''''[[MemeticMutation FUS! RO-DAH!]]'''''
** Mehrunes Dagon does not appreciate reluctance to [[spoiler: kill Silas Vesuius]]:
-->'''Dagon:''' Only Dagon can declare if a pawn is worth keeping. I. Have. Spoken.
** One of the guards' lines:
-->'''Guard:''' You see those warriors from Hammerfell? They've got curved swords. ''Curved. Swords.''
* PunnyName: ''Hearthfire'' is obviously named in reference to the home building and family building it allows the PC to do. Heartfire, however, is the [[AlternativeCalendar in-universe name for September]], the month where the DLC was released. Some books (and previous games) even spell the month as "Hearthfire."
* PuppetKing: The Jarl of Riften (the hyper-corrupt home of the Thieves' Guild) is pretty clueless about the state of her town. Her own advisor is in deep with the Guild, and the Guild gets most of its work from the local mead-brewing dynasty.
* PuppyLove: A one sided variant between the two children Lars Battle-Born (who is meek) and Braith (who is belligerent). In the latter's words:
-->'''Braith:''' If only he'd kiss me, then [[SlapSlapKiss I wouldn't have to beat him up so much]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:R]]
* RagnarokProofing: The dwarves have been gone for several thousand years, but their {{Death Trap}}s and robots are still working perfectly fine. There is an explanation for that: the Dwemer bent/changed the laws of physics to make their materials impervious to wear, tear and corrosion, plus some of them (specifically the little worker spider-bots) are designed to repair one another. Destroyed spiders can sometimes be seen to drop ore, implying they collect new materials where necessary for upkeep.
* RagtagBunchOfMisfits: The titular Dawnguard from the ''Dawnguard'' DLC - a rag-tag bunch of weirdos dedicated to hunting vampires. In fact, they were such a bunch of misfits that they split up years ago, and you (if you choose that path) have to help with PuttingTheBandBackTogether if you want to have a shot at defeating the blood-sucking menace.
** Interestingly, the 'minor', low-ranking members of the Dawnguard, who don't play any particular role in the story, seem to be fairly normal people who simply decided to do their part in fighting the (genuinely dangerous) vampires. So apparently, being a ragtag bunch of misfits isn't a requirement for joining, it's just a requirement for advancement.
* RailingKill: Extremely common due to the number of ledges, catwalks and balconies and the physics engine. It can get slightly annoying having to jump down a mountainside or into a pit to loot the body.
* {{Railroading}}: While the world is indeed wide open and lets you do quests in almost any order, the quests themselves tend to be extremely linear, with a few rare exceptions.
* RandomEncounters:
** Dragons start randomly spawning after a while, scaling with level.
** Most of the factions can spawn on the roads in small groups. Imperials and Thalmor are usually escorting a prisoner, Stormcloaks are on patrol and may run into Imperials, bandits may try to shake down travelers, etc.
** With ''Dawnguard'' installed, vampires can appear almost anywhere, even in towns, which is extremely hazardous to the health of the locals.
** ''Dragonborn'' adds cultists, though they stick to the south near the mountains.
* RandomlyGeneratedLevels: Some of the sidequests will randomly generate based on your playing style, like setting the target of the quest in a dungeon you haven't explored yet.
* RapeAsBackstory:
** Talking to Astrid after joining the Dark Brotherhood reveals that her first kill was a CreepyUncle who made "unwanted advances" on her, and it's implied he at least molested her.
** If you ask Sapphire to reveal her real name after joining the Thieves' Guild, she'll tell you about how as a young woman, a band of bandits murdered her family and abducted her, how they repeatedly beat and raped her, and how, after gaining the bandits' trust, [[RapeAndRevenge she got her hands on a dagger one night and killed them all as they slept]].
** In ''Dawnguard'', Serana and her mother are "Daughters of Cold Harbor" and became vampires during a rite to the Daedric prince Molag Bal. Molag Bal, known as the King of Rape, raped a girl to make the first vampire, and it's implied that the event is re-enacted during this rite. Neither of them like to talk about the details.
* RatedMForManly: In particular, the Nords, who are big and burly and mock the player if they favor magic. Even the ladies.
** It's worth noting the only school of magic they respect is Restoration. Because if you live in Skyrim, you're going to need healing [[EverythingTryingToKillYou sooner]] [[FightMagnet or]] [[GrimUpNorth later]].
** If you're Imperial and wearing heavy armor, a Nord might say you "[[StayInTheKitchen clang like a kitchen and should stay in one.]]"
** Walking around in elven armor or with an elven weapon gets you a ''lot'' of flak from Nord guards who prefer steel. Wearing elven gear while ''being'' an elf gets you even more mockery.
** The very idea of the plot is RatedMForManly: a god of destruction returns and sends forth dragons to eat the world. You slay them. You gain powers by [[YourSoulIsMine eating their souls]]. You exert these powers by [[MakeMeWannaShout shouting]]. And it's all set in the land of fantasy Vikings.
** And the theme song, which features a male choir going "Hoo! Ha!" and singing a [[BraggingThemeTune song about how the Dragonborn is awesome.]]
** Normal magic has you studying and using mana to cast spells, along with hand gestures. Thu'ums just have you shouting at reality itself, ''and reality listens''. And you power it with the souls of slain dragons, in their own tongue. If it was any manlier you would grow hairs on your chest every time you used a Thu'um.
** Honorable mention goes to the book ''King Olaf and the Dragon'', which is about an earlier Nord High King dueling a dragon, first with shield and axe, and then with Thu'um, and finally wearing it down and taking it prisoner. The book - which is a scholarly work that simply recounts various versions of the oral lore - mentions that the only way the story could be more 'Nord' would be if King Olaf beat the dragon in a DrinkingContest.
* [[RealMenLoveJesus Real Nords Love Talos]]: The major cause for the Stormcloak rebellion is that TheEmpire [[LesCollaborateurs caved to the demands]] of the [[ANaziByAnyOtherName Thalmor]] and outlawed worship of their native god-man.
* RealityWarper: Dragons (and, by extension, the Dragonborn) have the innate ability to use the Thu'um, or Shouts, a power that causes magic-like effects through speech alone rather than spells. Dragons in ''Skyrim'' don't breathe fire or cast a fire spell; they simply ''command'' fire to appear, ''and it does''.
* ReallySevenHundredYearsOld: Elves, naturally. Also vampires, with special mention going to a 300-year-old vampire assassin who takes advantage of looking like the ten-year-old girl she was when she was turned.
** Serana. She was put away during the Interregnum in the Second Era, before the Third Empire of Cyrodiil, at ''least'' 635 years before the game's time period. Probably even longer, as the Third Era was only declared when all of Tamriel was brought under Tiber Septim's banner, and it took the closing years of the Second Era for Tiber to achieve that.
** Dragons, due to being biologically immortal. Paarthurnax, for instance, is one of the few Dragons that have survived unscathed from the Merethic Era.
** [[spoiler: Knight-Paladin Gelebor and his brother, Arch-Curate Vrythur, the last surviving Snow Elves. Given that it's heavily implied that Auriel himself is keeping the former alive, they may even come from the Merethic Era]].
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Many, many examples abound. On both sides of the Civil War, in various joinable factions, and even with one-note quest [=NPCs=]. Examples include, but are not limited to;
** Ulfric Stormcloak, who is an effective military leader and is well loved by his hold and half of Skyrim. He takes into account the opinions of every member of his court, including his steward and mage, when making decisions. He takes a great many steps to tend to the security of his city in spite of being very short of manpower during the civil war. He is easy to approach during the campaign and shows on various occasions to believe very strongly in your capabilities. He is also regretful of having caused the civil war and wishes an end to it would come soon.
** Ulfric's replacement, should the Imperial Legion win, is basically in running for some "Best Human Being Alive" award. He's kind, decent, polite. Within '''hours''' of getting his new job, he's already met the dark elves of the ghetto-like grey quarters to work on plans to renovate the Grey Quarters, and is trying to find a way to let the Argonians into the city without increasing the town's already huge racial tensions. And that's along with his plans to rebuild Windhelm's economy and reputation following the war. He even keeps most of Ulfric's staff on hand since they know their jobs well enough, and offers lodging to the deposed Jarls who were supporting Ulfric.
** Kodlak Whitemane, Harbinger of the Companions of Jorrvaskr, is an incredibly wise old man and a fearsome warrior well into his old age. His very job depends on him being a good leader and a good man as well. He fully endorses your entry into the Companions despite the protests of his subordinates and is able to shut them up on that count. [[spoiler:Later, when you avenge a fellow member's death at the hands of a rival guild by slaughtering their members at large, he reprimands you for this, as it means to invite an even greater war in the future. Despite this, he still thinks highly enough of you to involve you in his far more important plan for ridding the Companions of their Werewolf curse.]]
** Balgruuf of Whiterun is likely the first Jarl with whom you will have any meaningful interaction. He is well respected within his hold and would rather it be neutral in the civil war; he would prefer to deal with the omnipresent dragon problem, and takes tangible steps to combat it. He is also respectful towards the Dragonborn and rewards them generously for their services in his hold.
** General Tullius is quite rough along the edges, but it's clear that he cares about his men (listen to his speech [[spoiler: after the battle of Windhelm]]) and does not like to slaughter the Stormcloaks, fully aware that the only faction who will gain from the war is the Thalmor. And while he calls your execution at the start of the game a "slight misunderstanding", he ''at least'' recognizes the fact that you got dragged into it for no good reason.
* RebelLeader: Ulfric, the leader of the Stormcloak rebellion, and Madanach, the leader of the Forsworn rebellion in the Reach.
* RecliningReigner: The default model pose for anyone sitting on a throne.
** Which means that it may double as a SlouchOfVillainy for Jarls of opposite factions depending on whose side you're on.
** [[TheHighQueen Elisif the Fair]] is the only Jarl who does not sit on her throne like this.
** [[http://i.imgur.com/iXl5a.jpg Let Jarl Balgruuf educate you.]]
* RecurringRiff: Besides the obvious re-use of the "Elder Scrolls" theme (sung to a "Barbarian Choir" as Todd Howard described it to Jeremy Soule), an astute ear can hear several recurring riffs in the musical soundtracks.
* RedAndBlackAndEvilAllOver: Dremora Daedra and, by association, Daedric equipment. Also the Dark Brotherhood uniform.
** In ''Dawnguard'', the new vampire armors come in red/black, black, and grey, all with silver trim.
* RedEyesTakeWarning: [[UnreliableNarrator Maybe]]. The Dunmer aren't evil as a race, but their red eyes are the result of evil. Long before the events of ''Skyrim'', the Tribunal, a trio of PhysicalGods, broke a sacred promise in order to obtain their divinity. The goddess Azura punished them and their entire race by giving them the dark skin and red eyes they now have... or, if you ask Azura, it just happened without her interference.
** As of ''Dawnguard'', vampires and Vampire Lords have glowing red/yellow/orange eyes.
* RedHerring: You'd think that Ulfric's ability to use the Voice would imply a stronger connection to the plot about Alduin and his dragons trying to eat the world, but it never really comes up. It's just something he used to get victory when he challenged the last High King to a duel. Though Imperials and Stormcloaks have the expected opinions on the matter, [[spoiler:when met in Sovngarde, Torygg bears him no grudge over it.]]
** It '''is''' worth noting that despite not being totally involved in the main quest, Ulfric will gladly tell you all you he knows about the Greybeards and your destiny as the Dragonborn if asked. This is significant when compared to how little information on them you can get from only other Jarl with some tangential involvement in the chain, the Jarl of Whiterun.
** Delphine initially suspects that [[spoiler:the Thalmor]] are behind the appearance of the dragons. [[spoiler:They're not, and after you find that out and rescue Esbern from them, they stop being important in the main quest.]]
* RedOniBlueOni: Ulfric is brash, prideful, and aggressive while Tullius is calm, caring, and defensive; this is ironic, seeing as though the Empire wears red and the Stormcloaks blue. Even then, the game makes strides proving they're NotSoDifferent.
* RedShirt: When you go to [[spoiler:trap the dragon Odahviing in Dragonsreach]], the people on the Dragonsreach balcony are you, the Jarl of Whiterun, his adjutant, and some nameless guard. No points for guessing which one gets snapped up and spectacularly flung into the distance on [[spoiler:Odahviing's]] first pass.
** The Vigilants Of Stendarr are an entire faction of this in ''Dawnguard''. The moment the DLC is installed, everyone at their headquarters is killed by the Volkihar Vampires.
*** Not just killed. Before ''Dawnguard'' is installed, the Hall of the Vigilants is fully stocked home base for a sect of Daedra hunters. After installation, it becomes a burned-out husk filled with corpses.
* RegeneratingHealth: Your health bar will slowly refill - emphasis on ''slowly.'' This is so you don't have to waste your precious health potions between battles; it's not really meant for recovery in the middle of one.
** This also seems to apply to all humanoid [=NPCs=] as well. Possibly a fix for the issue seen in ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 3}}'' and ''VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas'' where caravans and traveling [=NPCs=] would slowly run out of health and eventually die due to fighting minor enemies over the course of several days.
** And the Argonian special ability, Histskin, multiplies their health regen by 10, bringing them up to HealingFactor levels.
** There are also several enchanted amulets, rings and the like which will boost the speed of your health recharge. And though you can only wear one example of each ''type'' of clothing at a time (i.e., one ring, one pair of boots, etc.), the game has no problem letting you wear multiple pieces/accessories that all have the same ''effect,'' thus making the overall percentage benefit a cumulative one.
** Notably absent with werewolves. If a werewolf needs to heal, it needs to eat someone. On the plus side, one or two feedings is usually good enough to get back to full health.
* ReLex: The Dragon language is a ReLex of English.
* TheRemnant: Multiple.
** [[MurderInc The Dark Brotherhood]] is all the way down to a remote sanctuary in a Skyrim forest, and they're short a Listener. Without [[ISeeDeadPeople a Listener]], they don't know about any of the [[DealWithTheDevil contracts]] that come from people praying to [[EldritchAbomination the Night Mother]], the Dark Brotherhood's patron saint and bride of [[GodOfEvil Sit]][[PowerOfTheVoid his]]. They've had to abandon the five Tenets, the only rules the Brotherhood has ever had, and actively go out and look for people seeking their services, just to survive.
** [[ThievesGuild The Thieves' Guild]] is reduced to a leaky old tavern in falling-apart sewer ruins, surrounded by gutter-trash; they've lost every single resource and connection they'd ever had; they've lost the fear and respect they once had, instead being looked on as little more than thugs pretending to be civilized, and they're one flash of interest by the guards away from extinction.
** [[TheOrder The Blades]] have been all but wiped out in the 200 years since the Oblivion Crisis. During the Great War between the Empire and the Aldmeri Dominion, most of their members were hunted down and killed by the Thalmor. Only a handful managed to survive the war, and any remaining members live in hiding as they are still being hunted by the Thalmor.
** TheEmpire itself is only a shadow of its former glory, with only three provinces remaining under its control. Three (Summerset Isle, Elsweyr and Valenwood) have seceded and have become part of what is now the Third Aldmeri Dominion while the other two (Black Marsh and Hammerfell) have gone completely independent (Black March has also expanded north, conquering a fair quantity of what is left habitable in Morrowind). Out of the three provinces that the Empire still controls, only High Rock has been untouched by either war or natural disaster.
*** The Dovahkiin can further this decline by helping the Stormcloaks throw out the Imperial Legion and assassinating the Emperor.
** The Forsworn are little more than guerrilla warbands while their king is imprisoned and used by Thonar Silver-Blood to control the Forsworn.
** The Companions, the honor-based warrior guild in Whiterun, have been around for literally as long as Skyrim itself; they were founded by Ysgramor, who led the Five Hundred Companions across the sea to settle the land. Membership has dwindled down to a whopping dozen members by the time you join the ranks. [[spoiler:Two more then die in the course of the questline.]] Unlike some of the other factions whose numbers have shrunk, however, the Companions don't seem particularly troubled by this.
** In ''Dragonborn'', it's revealed that [[CorruptCorporateExecutive Great House Hlaalu]] has become this, being kicked off the council of Great Houses and being officially disbanded by the Dunmer after the Empire basically abandoned Morrowind following the Oblivion Crisis (and Hlaalu had been the Empire's biggest native supporters). The few Hlaalu members who still exist are basically little more than revenge-obsessed bandits, and there's a small quest chain where you deal with a Hlaalu revenge plot against Raven Rock.
* TheRenfield: Vampires found in dungeons will usually have thralls on hand.
* ReroutedFromHeaven: Kodlak, Harbinger of the Companions, wants to go to the Nordic afterlife of Sovngarde, but since he's [[spoiler:a werewolf, he knows that the [[TheWildHunt Daedric Lord Hircine]] will claim his soul]] after death instead. [[spoiler:Kodlak is killed when his home is attacked by werewolf hunters, but the Dovahkiin is able to break his curse after his death, freeing his soul from Hircine's realm and allowing him to go to Sovngarde.]]
* {{Retcon}}: Hermaeus Mora's appearance (a dark purple vortex) in the vanilla game's main questline has been changed to reflect his Dragonborn appearance [[spoiler:[[CthulhuMythos Yog-Sothoth Lite.]]]]
* RewardedAsATraitorDeserves: One of the late Dark Brotherhood quests has this. [[spoiler:After you poison the Emperor, General Maro arrives to tell you that you just killed a BodyDouble. He tells you that one of your own betrayed you, and set up a deal with him to keep the Empire away from the Brotherhood. However, he's angry that you killed his son in an earlier quest, and has no intentions of honoring his end of the bargain, and while trying to kill you, he's already sent a large group of soldiers to your hideout. The "traitor" turns out to be Astrid, who wanted to do this to keep the remnants of the Brotherhood alive. A later quest allows you to kill Maro, should you decide to take {{revenge}} on him for this.]]
* {{Retirony}}: Players can invoke this - bandits and similar criminal [=NPCs=] will sometimes mention their hopes to buy a secluded island and retire.
* RevengeBeforeReason: [[spoiler: The Blades insist that Paarthurnax die, despite his role in saving Skyrim from Alduin, because of his past atrocities. Refusing this request causes them to stop helping you. They do this even after Esbern chides the Imperials and Stormcloaks for nursing petty grievances, if you hold the peace conference.]]
* RevivingEnemy: Trolls and Frost Trolls will fall prone and appear dead when they have a small slither of health but continue regenerating their health... (although the fact they don't get knocked back is a bit of a giveaway). See ISurrenderSuckers for some honorable mentions.
* TheRevolutionWillNotBeCivilised: The Forsworn, though they spend most of the game trying to kill you on sight, are ''still'' arguably more sympathetic than their enemies in Markarth. They'd probably be even more sympathetic if their ''modus operandi'' wasn't "Murder everyone we don't like because we once ruled this place thousands of years ago."
** They also consort with Hagravens, conduct sinister blood rituals, and will attack the player on sight even if he or she has sworn to fight for their cause. All in all, not a nice bunch.
* TheRevolutionWillNotBeVilified: Subverted: the game opens with the Empire appearing rather overzealous in their desire to execute members of the rebellion, and most of the PC's fellow prisoners are rebels, giving the player a far better initial impression of the Stormcloaks. However, as the game goes on, it becomes quite apparent that the Stormcloaks aren't as good as they seem, being rather racist, and there's several doubts cast on their leader, Ulfric Stormcloak, and his true goals in starting the rebellion, while the Empire is shown to not be completely irredeemable but flawed. The situation soon turns into a GrayAndGreyMorality situation.
* RiddleForTheAges: The Headless Horseman. Who is he? Why does he haunt the night? What does he want? The game offers no answers.
** The game does offer some small clues, though. If you follow the horseman, he eventually leads you to Hamvir's Rest, a very remote graveyard located at the foot of the mountains southeast of Morthal. There's little of interest here, but on the northwest side of the graveyard is a tomb with an axe, a helmet, and a skull beside it (quite unusually, this skull cannot be picked up by the player), implying that this is where his remains are buried. The horseman occasionally speaks, and has unique dialogue; if he does not reach Hamvir's Rest before sunrise, he may comment, "Such an abrupt end to our game".
* RoadCone:
** Sheogorath's dialogue implies that he is [[spoiler:the Champion of Cyrodiil, so ''Shivering Isles'' was canonically completed. Some of his other pieces of dialogue imply that he became both the Gray Fox (completed the Thieves' Guild chain) and the Listener (completed the Dark Brotherhood quest chain).]]
** The player found 100 nirnroots for Sinderion, according to [[spoiler:the journal you find on his corpse.]]
** Given that [[spoiler:Clavicus Vile is in a weakened state at the time of the game]], it can be inferred that [[spoiler:the Champion of Cyrodiil ignored Barbas' warnings and gave Umbra to Clavicus in exchange for the Masque.]]
* RoaringRampageOfRescue: Thanks to the ''Hearthfire'' DLC, sometimes when the Dragonborn comes home, his/her spouse is not there and will instead be greeted by a bandit with a ransom note. [[TooDumbToLive Apparently Rochelle the Red thought kidnapping the Dovahkiin's spouse was a good idea]].
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: The Dragonborn has the opportunity to go on several of these:
** If you join the Dark Brotherhood, you get to do this on another character's behalf in the early questline, killing both a bandit leader name Alain Dufont and optionally a girl in Windhelm named Nilsine Shatter-Shield as part of a revenge scheme concocted by that mission's client Muiri, who feels that Alain, who got close to her just so he could use her to rob the Shatter-Shields (who she was a close friend of), and the Shatter-Shields themselves, who cast Muiri out afterwards, both need to pay for ruining her life. She admits she planned to do it herself, but lost her nerve and instead hired the Dark Brotherhood to exact her vengeance for her.
** Near the end of the Dark Brotherhood questline, one of your optional objectives in the final mission is to [[spoiler:kill Commander Maro, who intimidated Astrid, the leader of the Brotherhood, into betraying you, then went back on his word and orchestrated the destruction of the Falkreath Sanctuary and the killing of most of the assassins of the Sanctuary]].
** The Companions questline allows you to go on two of these, one of them against the Silver Hand for [[spoiler:killing Skjor and later Kodlak Whitemane himself]], and the other against the Glenmoril Witches for [[spoiler:their role in turning the Circle into werewolves]].
** The Thieves' Guild questline turns into one of these following [[spoiler:Mercer Frey betraying you at Snow Veil Sanctum]] and really picks up when [[spoiler:the rest of the Guild find out the full extent of his treachery and join you in taking him down]].
** One of the quests in Solitude, "Lights Out!", involves you doing a job for an Argonian pirate by the name of Jaree-Ra, involving running a ship aground so that he, his sister Deeja, and the Blackblood Marauders can loot the thing, promising you a cut of the treasure. [[spoiler:Turns out that neither of them have any intention of even leaving you alive, let alone giving you any cut of their haul -- and as an added bonus, the Blackblood Marauders have murdered everyone on board the ship despite Jaree-Ra's assurance that they would be left alive]]. The rest of the quest turns into an object lesson in why you ''do not betray the Dovahkiin''.
* RomanceSidequest: The player character can get married if they so choose.
** FourthDateMarriage: So long as you've spoken to the priest in Riften about marriage customs and have an amulet of Mara, you can get engaged to someone after having known them for all of an hour, and your sole interaction with them being beating them bloody in a bare-knuckle brawl. Most of the marriages are more complex than that, though some simply involve a fetch quest. The priest of Mara explains the custom: in the land of frigid blizzards, hungry trolls, temperamental giants, unpleasant undead, insane bears, and an endless supply of vampires, bandits, wizards, and [[BreadEggsBreadedEggs wizard bandit vampires]], the people of Skyrim don't really value long courtships - aside from the inherent lack of romanticism, one might easily kick the bucket before the courtship is complete. If you like someone, you ''tell'' them, and if they care enough about you, marriage ensues.
* RougeAnglesOfSatin: The game's conversations and book texts contain a number of errors of this nature. The "unofficial patch" mods list pages and pages of corrections.
* RousingSpeech: There are several notable ones on both sides of the Civil War.
** For a specific example, try this early speech by Ulfric Stormcloak:
-->"I fight for the men I've held in my arms, dying on foreign soil! I fight for their wives and children, whose names I heard whispered in their last breath. I fight for we few who did come home, only to find our country full of strangers wearing familiar faces. I fight for my people impoverished to pay the debts of an Empire too weak to rule them, yet brands them criminals for wanting to rule themselves! [[SunkCostFallacy I fight so that all the fighting I've already done hasn't been for nothing!]] I fight...because I must."
* RoyallyScrewedUp: [[spoiler:Sheogorath]] states that Pelagius the Mad was not normal in comparison to the average person, but he was pretty par for the course as far as the Septim royal family went.
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Ulfric fought in the Great War, put down the Forsworn Rebellion, and is now leading one side of the Skyrim Civil War. Balgruuf presumably fought in the Great War (or some other conflict) as well - he and his housecarl Irileth are [[FireForgedFriends old battle buddies]] - and he [[spoiler:eventually picks up a sword himself during the Battle for Whiterun]].
* [[RubberForeheadAliens Rubber Forehead Elves]]: Less so than in previous games, though; elves look much less human than they used to, with elongated skulls and strangely shaped and colored eyes.
* RuleOfThree: Every shout consists of three one-syllable words, each one escalating the power of the shout as they're said.
* RunningGag: M'aiq the Liar wanders the lands of Skyrim, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mxx4Qf1-Xc telling tall tales]] as usual.
** ''[[RefugeInAudacity The Lusty Argonian Maid]]'' now has a second volume.
*** And gains a SpearCounterpart spin-off in ''Dawnguard'', "The Sultry Argonian Bard".
** Your sweetrolls are ''still'' being stolen.
** Fishy Sticks return, this time as a form of meditative stance used by... Sheogorath.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:S]]
* SadisticChoice: When the beggar Narfi asks you about his sister, you can either crush his spirit by telling him the truth of her death, or fill him with false hope by lying and saying she'll be home soon, which is likely to hurt him even more in the future.
* SaveTheWorldClimax: ''Twice'':
** The first chapter of the main storyline revolves around the mystery of dragons returning. [[spoiler: Eventually you will have to defeat their leader, Alduin the literal World-Eater]]
** In the College of Winterhold questline you initially find a strange orb in a nordic ruin. It later turns out to be the 'Eye of Magnus', an immensely powerful artifact. Then it gets into the hands of an insane Thalmor mage and guess who has to take care of that...
* TheScapegoat: [[spoiler:''You'']] in the Forsworn quest chain in Markarth.
* ScaryDogmaticAliens: The Thalmor are a fantasy variant. See ANaziByAnyOtherName above.
* SceneryGorn: The southern end of Solstheim. Everything is covered in dull grey volcanic ash, a jarring contrast to the fairly vibrant colors seen in the rest of the game. Of particular note is the remains of a forest near Tel Mithryn. The charred stumps are [[ShownTheirWork all bent away from the shore, knocked over by the pyroclastic flow]] when Red Mountain erupted in 4 E 5.
* SceneryPorn: Par the course for a Bethesda game. Someone most definitely put a ''lot'' of work into the sky textures this time around. The water physics have also ''vastly'' improved. [[http://youtu.be/CQB4wkmKOv8 Case in point, this timelapse video.]] For a nice view, go to an iceberg in the middle of the northern sea, use Clear Skies, and marvel as [[TheWorldIsJustAwesome you can see from Winterhold to Solitude.]] And if you've been delving into Dwemer ruins, you'll likely have come across Blackreach... it's a sight to be seen, for sure.
** The [[http://youtu.be/ZhBBa2jLqe4 Northern Lights]].
** The view of the sky at the top of High Hrothgar when Clear Skies is used is absolutely breathtaking.
* SchmuckBait:
** Many dungeons have pedestals with objects on them. Picking them up triggers a BoobyTrap. Subverted in one case when it opens a hidden treasure room.
** One Dwemer ruin has a particularly amusing example - when you enter all you see is a single room with a bright light floating in midair. Right next to it are a couple of dead bodies, and if you have a follower, they'll say "I have a bad feeling about this," which is usually saved for boss rooms or horrible occurrences. Unsurprisingly, choosing to "Touch the Mysterious Orb" results in being caught in a trap (although it's [[NotTheFallThatKillsYou mostly harmless]], and is the only way to access the rest of the ruin).
** One dungeon contains a Word Wall with a trap door rigged to send you plummeting down into an evil necromancer's lair. Another dungeon reverses this equation by having a lethal spike trap guarding a chest which is revealed to contain only useless junk. And beneath the spike trap? [[spoiler: A spiral staircase leading to a word wall]]. Luckily, your backstabbing partner for the dungeon will take the bait if not killed.
** A stealth-oriented player can invoke this on the AI by firing arrows to draw their attention elsewhere in the room and causing them to investigate the sound. The player can then sneak by while they're distracted, or get an out of sight enemy to come into view for a proper shot.
** In Blackreach, you will find several of the giant Dwemer Centurion animunculi, inactive in their storage rigs... and a lever switch right next to them. One guess what the switch does.
** The Redwater Skooma den. A new type of Skooma? Awesome. Let's just ignore the dead bodies in some of the stalls and partake... why am I in a cell?
** As you're taking your tour of the Dark Brotherhood's Lair, you encounter a monster spider you'll probably kill out of reflex like you have dozens of others. The Dark Brotherhood will then turn on you because that was Lis, the familiar of another guild member.
* SchrodingersGun:
** A very early one whose effects can be seen immediately at the beginning of the game. During the chaos of the dragon attacking the garrison at Helgen, you can run into the keep with either a Stormcloak lieutenant or an Imperial lieutenant. If you're with the Imperial, the keep is full of hostile Stormcloaks, if you're with the Stormcloak, it's full of hostile Imperials (including the female captain that ordered your execution without trial).
* ScoobyDooHoax: Subverted in the Shroud Hearth Barrow sidequest. The "spirit" haunting the barrow is a treasure hunter who's invented a potion to make him look like a ghost to scare everyone away while he works out how to plunder the tomb... but after six months without finding a way in, he's gone crazy and thinks he really is a guardian spirit. [[note]] Though it's heavily implied that most of his insanity is a result of getting amnesia from drinking too many of his potions [[/note]] However, the barrow ''is'' actually full of Draugr and skeletons... but they're deeper in than where the treasure hunter was.
* ScrewDestiny: An interesting example since no one is certain whether it's TheHero doing this or the BigBad. Paarthurnax muses on the possibility that Alduin is the one acting against destiny by trying to end the world before its time. The vagueness of the prophecy concerning Alduin and the Dragonborn doesn't help matters. Throughout the game the Dragonborn always has the option of saying s/he doesn't care about destiny whenever someone brings it up, despite being TheChosenOne of destiny.
** This is an actual element of the setting; there are certain individuals who are born who do not have destinies at all. These individuals are able to dramatically change history simply by existing. To date, all player characters in ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'' series have been such. You can actually read a "Book of Fate" in Windhelm that is supposed to be a magical artifact that tells something about the future of whoever reads it, and that certain individuals only see blank pages because they have no fate. (It's not clear, however, if this is the truth or if the owner of the museum involved is just talking out his ass, especially as said owner is [[spoiler: the insane serial killer haunting the streets at night]].)
* ScrewTheRulesIHaveConnections: If you've worked your way through the Thieves Guild questline, guards can be bribed to forgive your crimes and erase your bounty. It's a flatrate, too, which means they'll erase bounties far higher than the payoff.
* ScrewThisImOuttaHere: The reason for the Nords' rebellion? Outrage over the White-Gold Concordant, which outlawed the worship of Talos and basically made the Empire the Dominion's bitch.
** Dragons will, on rare occasions, retreat when fighting the Dragonborn if they take enough damage.
** Having a high stamina meter will let you do this in a pinch. Especially useful for mages and in the event of a bear attack.
** Can also be pulled off by the player if there's a nearby door or passage that transitions to another area, and the enemies are too dumb to follow.
** It's a game effect as well: Fear effects on the living in the Illusion magic discipline, Turn Undead effects in the Restoration discipline, or using the [[MakeMeWannaShout Shout]] "Dismay" on anything. If an enemy has a low enough Confidence (a hidden stat, and what the magic effects work on), they may also turn tail and run as well.
* [[ScrewYouElves Screw You, Thalmor!]]: Neither the Imperials nor the Stormcloaks have much love for the Thalmor, and for ''very'' good reasons.
* SecondHourSuperpower: The Dragonborn gains the ability to use their first Shout only after completing one (relatively easy) dungeon and slaying one dragon (with significant back-up) in the storyline missions.
* SealedEvilInACan: The Dragonborn's defeat of Alduin is only temporary, as confirmed by Arngier. Alduin is, in fact, a god, and therefore will return at the end of the world, meaning all your efforts have only extended the time until the end of the world. The difference is that it will occur when the gods plan it to, rather than according to the caprices of a power-drunk domineering dragon entrusted with the task.
* SelfDeprecation: Quite a few in the ''Dawnguard'' DLC.
** Isran says "sleep is for the weak," and urges the player not to, for vampires will be able to sneak up on them. This pokes at how you could complete an entire game without sleeping, and how the only way to join the Dark Brotherhood is to fall asleep and be abducted by them.
* SelfImposedChallenge: Skipping the very first quest of the game that, among other things, unbinds your hands and allows you to pick up objects and interact with people. [[http://www.reddit.com/r/skyrim/comments/n3w4k/selfimposed_challenge_hands_bound_from_the/ Link]].
** Some roleplaying or hardcore players go the "[=DiD=]" ([[NoDeathRun Dead is Dead]]) route when playing Skyrim. If their character is killed, he or she is deleted.
* SequenceBreaking: One particular example for the quest "Lights Out!", received from Jaree-Ra. It's possible to get a random quest from Falk Firebeard, Jarl Elisif's steward, to take out some bandits in Broken Oar Grotto... which happens to be the lair of the Blackblood Marauders, the pirates Jaree-Ra and his sister Deeja are working for. You can then read Captain Hargar's journal and find out that they're looking for a fall guy to put out the lighthouse for them. You can continue with the quest anyway, and after dispatching Deeja, you'll find Jaree-Ra alone in the grotto with the dead Marauders you took out earlier; apparently he's unfazed by the fact that the crew he's been working with has been slain to a man and he just attacks you on sight. Unfortunately, there is no option to let Jaree-Ra and Deeja know you're wise to the fact that they're trying to set you up and rub it in their faces [[AntiClimaxBoss before you kill them without breaking a sweat.]]
** While exploring the Dwarven ruin Raldbthar (either on your own or as part of the ''Dawnguard'' quest "Lost to the Ages"), you will likely fight a bandit lord named Alain Dufont. [[spoiler:Turns out he's a Dark Brotherhood target, and killing him before his quest is actually initiated unlocks unique dialogue from your questgiver. It also prevents your from going after an additional target for an extra reward, though it's nothing special if you miss it.]]
* SergeantRock: [[ActionGirl Legate Rikke]] of the Imperial Legion.
* SerialKiller: One of these is on the loose in Windhelm. [[spoiler:A quick count of the skulls in his lair indicates he has killed at least 14 victims in Windhelm before you got involved.]]
* SeriousBusiness: Mead in Skyrim is serious enough that there's a budding criminal empire based around it.
** Implying that someone doesn't drink mead (a.k.a. a 'milk drinker') is a fairly serious insult in Nord culture, to the point that you can get into deadly fights with random mercs on the road who call you such.
** The ban on Talos worship. In addition to being the main impetus for the Stormcloak Rebellion, it's the one thing that Nords on ''both'' sides of the conflict actually agree on and believe should be lifted. Indeed, many Imperial-aligned Nords are shown worshiping Talos ''anyway''.
* ShapeshifterBaggage: You can put on a fair amount of bulk turning into a werewolf or vampire lord, which then vanishes when you change back. Vampire lords even have their clothes on when they turn back.
* ShellShockedVeteran:
** Salvianus, one of the mentally unstable people living in the Ratway Warrens, was a Legion veteran of the Battle of The Red Ring, the battle that ended with the smashing of the Dominion army. He's burned out pretty bad, and long since fallen into the DespairEventHorizon. [[spoiler:The poor guy freaks out big time when the Thalmor come in after you trying to find Esbern.]]
-->'''Salvianus''': No! You can't be here! You're all dead! I already killed you over and over!
** Skyrim is BRIMMING with them. Poor Salvianus is the most striking example, but Brunwulf, Runil, Madena, Galmar, and Ulfric all qualify to some extent. Ralof/Hadvar (depending on whose side you joined) also displays a touch of PTSD after the [[spoiler: Battle of Whiterun]].
* ShiningCity: Solitude, the Imperial capital of Skyrim, is this as far as Nord standards go. It's the seat of the High King, a place of wealth, culture, and power, and a thriving merchant hub.
* ShockwaveStomp: Giants and frost atronachs will do this to stun people. Giants do it with their clubs. Frost atronachs do it with their club-shaped arms. In each case, they're trying to pound you into the ground, not slamming the ground just to stun you; the shockwave is merely the result of a near miss (and a reminder, especially in the case of giants, that you really, ''really'' don't want to get hit).
* ShootTheShaggyDogStory: A remarkably short example: you find a roughly circular area where everything was torched. In the middle, a [[WreathedInFlames spell tome of fire cloak]]. [[GoneHorriblyRight Next to it,]] [[ManOnFire a burnt, doubled over corpse]]. This is one of four apprentices of the Mage College in Winterhold who recently left to perform experiments in the field. The other three can also be found; one as a corpse surrounded by skeevers, with a few scrolls of fury and calm (perhaps he tried one and found it [[GoneHorriblyRight too much a success to try the other]]), and the other two as (respectively) a frostbitten corpse and riddled with arrows, both as a result of failures to find ways to keep mead magically chilled.
** In the [[GrimUpNorth icy, Arctic-like wasteland]] near Winterhold, there is a skeleton with its leg caught in a [[BearTrap bear trap]]. Another skeleton is [[PleaseDontLeaveMe sitting next to it]], [[TearJerker looking towards the trapped one.]]
* ShopliftAndDie: While shopkeepers will draw weapons and attack (and report you for crimes) if you do take stuff in front of them, they ''finally'' don't put steal-able items in front of them so you don't accidentally bump the mouse or the analog stick and the game interprets this as theft. On the other hand, if you do steal from them and don't pay with your life... they might send thugs after you to "teach you a lesson", telling the thugs on their contract they don't have to kill you but the hirer doesn't mind if they do. That's right, the victim may try even harder than just attacking you to ensure you will die for theft even if it was something incredibly small and you paid off your bounty! Sometimes they'll even send thugs after you when there were no witnesses to prove it was you--or [[GoodBadBugs when they're dead]]!
* ShoutOut: [[ShoutOut/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Numerous.]] No pun intended.
* ShownTheirWork: ''Skyrim'' is [[http://geoheritagescience.wordpress.com/2013/01/20/the-geology-of-skyrim/ geologically accurate]], with minerals most commonly occurring in regions that they would naturally form (i.e. gold in the Reach, where there's lots of compression and mountain building, iron in Whiterun where there's lots of metamophism, etc.).
** The forts are usually found at important intersections of roads or at other important locations.
* ShutUpHannibal: Can be evoked in some boss fights, occasionally combined with KilledMidSentence. Ulfric also drops a very satisfying one [[spoiler:on Elenwen, if you let her stay during "Season Unending"]].
* SillyReasonForWar: PlayedForDrama. One the surface, the Civil War is about religious freedom and humanity's fight for survival against evil elves, started by the Empire signing a peace treaty with the Thalmor that bans Talos worship. The Stormcloaks accuse the Empire of being oppressed [[StupidSurrender elven puppets]], while the Empire accuse the Stormcloaks of being racist [[UnwittingPawn elven pawns]]. The thing is, the Empire never enforce the ban except in the most flagrantly public of instances; practically every house in Skyrim has a small Talos shrine inside, and heck, even many of the Imperial high command still worship Talos in secret. And no matter how much they hate each other, ''[[ScrewYouElves they still hate the Thalmor more]]''. To make matters worse, the pro-Empire High King Torygg is speculated to have actually agreed with Ulfric, if Ulfric merely asked instead of shouting the King to death. So in practice, the war is being fought over who wants to openly worship Talos and fight the elves right now, and who wants to worship Talos privately to buy time and gather strength and fight the elves when they're ready, and everyone is so caught up in blaming each other and accusing the other of being wrong that they won't admit that the whole mess is utterly pointless and [[MagnificentBastard playing right into the Thalmor's hands]].
* SkeletonsInTheCoatCloset: [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Dragonbone equipment]]. There's really nothing more appropriate than killing dragons with the bones of other dragons you've already killed. There's even unique dialog for it from the final boss.
* SlaveRace: The Falmer spent many generations as slaves to the Dwemer before rebelling and warring with them until, for unrelated reasons, the Dwemer all disappeared. [[spoiler: The Dwemer were so thorough in their enslavement of the Snow Elves, who turned into the Falmer, that now only ''two'' remain... and one of those is a vampire.]]
** The Falmer have no qualms with giving the same treatments to humans. Human slaves can be found in the Falmer stronghold of Blackreach.
** As of ''Dawnguard'', Pure-Blood Vampires views humans as both free labor ''and'' a renewable food source.
* SlouchOfVillainy: In the mission where you're vetted for the Dark Brotherhood, your observer Astrid spends the whole time lounging on top of a bookcase, lazily swinging one foot.
* SmashMook: Giants. All they can really do is swipe at you, stomp on you and hit you with their clubs, but you ''[[HomeRunHitter really]]'' [[OneHitKill don't want]] to be on the wrong end of those clubs.
* SmugSnake: Thonar Silver-Blood. Even [[spoiler:his wife getting murdered]] makes him no less unsympathetic, and seeing him get explosively atomised by Forsworn magic is ''immensely'' satisfying.
* SoftWater: Played with. Landing in water will break your fall to some extent but don't expect a quarter inch of water to save you from dying from a long fall. It has to be deep enough for you to swim in at least, and maybe even deeper if you want to survive longer falls.
* SoLongAndThanksForAllTheGear: On occasion, a quest will prevent a follower from tagging along. Sometimes, the follower will just announce that he/she will be waiting where you found them but sometimes, the follower just won't be there when you go through a door or talk to a certain person. This can be maddening if you have them carrying something important for you, like a weapon too heavy for you to carry or specialized gear you bring for specific situations. Also, it's ''not'' unheard of for [[GoodBadBugs the game to "lose" them]]. It's possible for followers to "die" on the way back to the meeting spot or to get glitched someplace else, which is the final nail in playing this trope straight.
* SolveTheSoupCans: Played with. The puzzle to unlock a specific quest item consists of four buttons that move elements of the machine holding it when you press them. The solution is actually simple: press one button until one of the covered buttons opens, press the new button until the other covered button opens, and then press that button to open the machine. However, even though you can see what's happening with each button press, the goal in pressing them and what is actually happening isn't very clear. When the puzzle is done you can see your objective was to align the lenses overhead with the ones on the floor, but they aren't positioned in a way that looks like they're aligned, you know they are only because the next button opens. There's also two buttons at the start and the two other buttons that eventually open up, so just pressing one button at a time over and over runs counter-intuitive to what most players will assume, that there's a particular combination.
* SophisticatedAsHell: At the end of Sheogorath's quest: "Feel free to keep the Wabbajack. As a symbol of my... Oh, just take the damn thing."
* SpaceCompression: With a little bit of ThrivingGhostTown. Major battles are fought by dozens of men rather than, say, hundreds, and the cities aren't exactly huge. These are mostly AcceptableBreaksFromReality, though, and pretty par for the course for an ''Elder Scrolls'' game by now anyway.
** Particularly noteworthy in ''Skyrim'' is the complete removal of about 4-5 small towns entirely from the world map, and 3 are now just random inns along the road. This wouldn't be so notable if it wasn't for the fact that one of towns reduced to an inn was Old Hroldan, which was the site of a major battle that would be the start of TheEmpire. The game even mentions that Hroldan should be a town and calls attention to it with a quest due to its historical significance with Talos.
* SpamAttack: If you time your castings right, you can put out an impressive volume of fire with two-handed non-dual-cast Destruction spells. Special shout-out goes out to a [[ReviveKillsZombie non-destruction-school attack spell]] provided by Dawnguard: [[LightEmUp Vampire's Bane]], which charges up ready to cast even faster than the Destruction spells, allowing you to put out a blinding amount of area-effect LightEmUp damage and emptying your magicka bar in very short order.
* SpannerInTheWorks: ''You''. Multiple times.
** Thieves' Guild: [[spoiler:Mercer would have easily been able to dispose of Karliah and then leave the Guild high and dry while he makes off with the loot if the player never came into the picture.]]
** Civil War: [[spoiler:The Thalmor wanted to stretch out the civil war to drain the resources from both sides so that they could eventually and easily conquer Skyrim, but the Dragonborn appears and brings a decisive end to the battle in favor of either side, allowing their defenses to recover and prepare. So now the Thalmor have to face a fully prepared army led by a PhysicalGod.]]
** [[spoiler:Alduin pretty much ruined Tullius's clean capture and execution of Ulfric in the beginning of the game. It would likely have ended the civil war then and there.]]
** Very annoyingly, dragons do this ''all the time'' by attacking you out of nowhere. Even if you survive the encounter, there's still the chance of a dragon killing an NPC you were trying to talk to/protect.
** The Dark Brotherhood, should you elect to destroy it rather than join it.
* SpearCounterpart[=/=]DistaffCounterpart: Thongvor Silver-Blood and Maven Black-Briar. Each is the head of a commercially successful family - who owes that success to shady and illegal dealings. Maven works with both the Thieves' Guild and the Dark Brotherhood; Thongvor employs mercenaries to bully mine owners and Forsworn assassins to silence his enemies. Both are replacement Jarls for their respective holds if said holds change sides. In both cases, they have so much influence in the hold and have bribed the local guards so successfully, they arguably [[IOwnThisTown have more power over the town than the rightful Jarls do]]. Also, each of them have goons in town who will warn the player of their respective family's influence over the town (Maul for Maven, Yngvar the Singer for Thongvor), and said goons become Housecarls if Thongor/Maven become Jarl.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: If you have subtitles enabled, a lot of characters' names are misspelled. Special mention goes to Sanguine's [[spoiler:mortal avatar, whose last name has been spelled "Guenvere", "Gueyenne", and even "Guinevere" when it's supposed to be "Guevenne".]]
* SpiderSwarm:
** While they aren't explicitly stated as collective creatures, and no Queen has been featured yet, you usually meet Frosbite Spiders in large numbers. They usually are met by group of five, but you can easily meet several groups in the same dungeon, as well as one giant one as an occasional boss.
** Then ''Dragonborn'' gives us the Albino Spiders and their variants, which are all significantly smaller but much more numerous than the Frostbites.
* SpikesOfDoom: Everywhere. You can't [[HoldYourHippogriffs swing]] a dead [[CallARabbitASmeerp skeever]] without hitting a spike trap in some dungeons.
* SpikesOfVillainy: The daedra and daedric armor. Falmer and Forsworn equipment are also pretty spiky and evil-looking; the Falmer don't seem able to make huts that ''aren't'' covered in spikes. But then, the Falmer do make everything out of chaurus chitin, and chaurus ''are'' spiky by nature.
* SpiritualSuccessor: The Dragonborn Expansion can be seen as this to Morrowind's Bloodmoon. As they both take place in Solstheim, both have quests involving the Falx Carius and Fort Frostmoth. And both expansions are the only times you'll run into the Skaal.
* [[spoiler:SpiritWorld: Sovngarde is real, and you can go there.]]
** [[spoiler:''Dawnguard'' features Soul Cairn, a graveyard-like hell (well, Oblivion Realm) which houses victims of black soul gems. More accurately, the remnants of their souls go there after the main part of their souls are used in enchantments. Makes for a subtle PlayerPunch if you use them a lot.]]
* TheSquadette: Gender makes very little difference in ''most'' professions, but standard nameless town guards or Imperial/Stormcloak soldiers have about a 1:7 ratio of women to men.
* SssssnakeTalk: Averted! Argonians have a slight rasp to their voices, but otherwise speak completely normally this time. They don't even mutter "The prey approaches!" anymore if they don't like you. They sometimes hiss in combat, but it lacks words.
** The males have a slight rasp to their voice. Females sound like they've been smoking three packs a day for the last ten years.
* StealthBasedMission: Ideally, most of the Thieves' Guild missions are set up to be completed by stealth and guile rather than brute force; enemies are often much stronger than you can take on in multiples at your current level and are better off backstabbed or avoided entirely. However, as Black-Briar herself puts it, all that matters is results, so you ''could'' run around in the open stabbing enemies if you feel like it.
** In ''Dawnguard'', one of the Dawnguard's radiant quests requires you to eliminate a vampire disguised as a civilian, but it must be done stealthily, otherwise the guards will view it as a murder.
* StealthPun: Dragons' powers, such as breathing fire, are powered by speaking words of their ancient language. The game describes this as "deadly verbal debate", or in other words, a flame war.
* StealthRun: As noted above, this is encouraged by the Thieves' Guild, but the Dark Brotherhood also encourage this to some extent, and a large number of quests can be completed this way, if the player so chooses. [[spoiler:Boethiah]] demands you do this for her quest, though there are no consequences for being detected.
* SteamPunk: Dwemer fortresses and MiniMecha. Technically they're {{Magitek}}, so either the steam is [[ExcessiveSteamSyndrome entirely cosmetic]], or the magic is just providing the energy, with the steam actually driving the machinery.
* StockShoutOuts: For ''Skyrim'', arrow-in-the-knee references.
* StormingTheCastle: The ''second'' main plotline (the CivilWar) culminates in you doing this to your opposing faction. Also, the good path of [[spoiler:the Dark Brotherhood has you pulling one on their Sanctuary.]]
* StoryDrivenInvulnerability: Alduin. Also happens for many, many others, either for the whole game or until their parts are done. This is particularly vexing after the civil war plot is resolved; you are as-good-as-told to find the remaining enemy camps and wipe them out, but each one will be overseen by an "Essential" enemy leader who cannot be killed.
* {{Stripperiffic}}: Refreshingly averted (mostly), since the female armor actually looks like it could protect vital areas in combat [[JustifiedTrope (also, it gets cold in Skyrim)]]. Don't worry though, there are plenty of mods that are all over this trope.
* StupidCrooks: The bandits who pretend to be Legion soldiers. Trying to squeeze "taxes" from either a Stormcloak or a real Imperial Legion officer who also happens to be the walking divine intervention against giant fire-breathing god-lizards is not a good idea.
-->"I am in the Legion and I am damn sure you are not!"
** Similarly, the random Thieves encounter. Especially if you're both a member of the Thieves' Guild and wearing the armour at the time they try to rob you. You can point this [[FailedASpotCheck obvious oversight]] out to them, but if you're the Guild-Master, you get the infinitely better option to shake ''them'' down for money for having the gall to try and rob their boss!
* StupidityIsTheOnlyOption: One quest that involves tracking down the corpses of a fallen expedition into a Dwemer ruin includes the objective to find and activate the Dwemer defenses, namely their golems, which you then must fight to escape. However, justified - in a NiceJobBreakingItHero moment, the player killed the giant spider that was stopping the Falmer from invading Markarth from below, so reactivating the defenses is necessary to prevent this from now happening.
** In both the Companions' quest and the College of Winterhold quest, you have to activate something that would lock you into the room with no way to get out without a scripted scene. There is absolutely nothing you can do to avoid this; the only way to proceed is to use the event flag to open the doors to go further.
** Same with the Thieves' Guild[=/=]Nightingale questline, where [[spoiler:you need to jump into a pit with no way out, and you can find the skeleton of the last guy who did the same and ''starved to death''. Good thing you picked up that Skeleton Key, right?]]
** This ties in nicely with StoryDrivenInvulnerability for some questlines. In the Winterhold quest you encounter [[spoiler:Ancano, who has Thalmor spy written all over him in big glowing letters and is a pompous, arrogant JerkAss to boot. You can't kill him until he almost brings about the destruction of the college and the town of Winterhold.]] May also count as YouCantThwartStageOne.
* SuccessionCrisis: The death of Skyrim's old High King led to this. The new High King is supposed to be elected from among the nine Jarls, but with a civil war going on, nobody is willing to convene the Moot to hold the election.
* SuddenlyVoiced: Later [[spoiler:the dragons speak English.]]
** GameplayAndStoryIntegration: [[spoiler:As the Dovahkiin is tutored by the Graybeards and kills more of the dragons, he understands more of the Dragon Tongue, so [[LeaningOnTheFourthWall this extends to the player as well]]]]. It is also likely that dragons understand some amount of the language spoken in Skyrim and switch between this and their own language when speaking to humans, as many people unfamiliar in a language often do. [[spoiler:Dragons which actually speak to you - Paarthurnax and Odahviing - will swap midsentence; but Alduin and a few of his named lieutenants will do so depending on whom they're speaking to.]]
* SuicidalOverconfidence: Aside from what we've grown to expect, occasionally [=NPCs=] will try to pick a fight with you, accepting which starts hand-to-hand combat. While all this is by no means unusual, said [=NPCs=] will pick fights with you even after it becomes known nationwide that you're the Dragonborn - which means you've killed at least one huge dangerous dragon. This doesn't seem to faze them. They'll also challenge Khajiit (who have huge claws) to unarmed combat.
* SummonBiggerFish: As noted above under StupidityIsTheOnlyOption, clearing out one Dwemer ruin of the Falmer that would invade the connecting city requires the player to activate the Dwemer golems, which will then wipe them out. The golems, at least, will stay in the ruin.
** [[spoiler:At the the end of the main questline, the player can do this at will in an open area with Odahviing, a dragon that has pledged to serve you until you die.]]
* SuperMode:
** The Werewolf and Vampire Lord forms fit this mold, particularly with the ''Dawnguard'' DLC. Werewolf form, in particular, is time-limited, and you have to feast on the corpses of your fallen (non-undead, non-construct) enemies to maintain it, lest you revert to your original race... quite naked and unarmed.
** You can craft your own SuperMode through Alchemy - the right combination of potions could vastly boost your regeneration of health, stamina and magic, heal you, make you more resistant to damage, ''do'' more damage with your chosen weapon, and a host of other effects - until it wears out.
** With the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, the "Dragon Aspect" Shout sets the Dragonborn into overdrive, vastly increasing the power of their Thu'um and the amount of damage dealt with weapons, as well as covering them in a set of ethereal Dragonbone armour.
* SurplusDamageBonus: Any damage done to an enemy over its total health will translate into [[WreakingHavok physical momentum]], to the point where hitting a nearly dead enemy with a strong attack will make it shoot across the room.
* SuspiciousVideoGameGenerosity
** The ''Dawnguard'' DLC gives you a quest to find a lost Aetherium Forge. There's a cache of potions at the door to the Forge itself, right before you face a rather formidable amount of enemies and a particularly punishing boss fight.
** There's a couple of prominently placed Resist Shock potions placed right before the door where you have to face Potema's council of draugr while a giant beam of electricity circulates around the room.
* SwordBeam: In the DLC ''Dragonborn'', you can find part way through a dungeon a unique Two-Handed sword that launches Sword Beams with each power attack. Said beams are mainly used to solve a puzzle, and aren't all that strong, nor is the sword in comparison to higher tier equipment, but still, [[AwesomeButImpractical SWORD BEAMS!!!]]
* SycophanticServant: Cicero
[[/folder]]

[[folder:T]]
* [[TakeAThirdOption Take a Fourth Option]]: In the quest "With Friends Like These..." you are locked up in a cabin by the Dark Brotherhood and may only leave when you kill either a Khajiit gangster, a Nord mercenary, or an insufferable old widowed mother. Or all three. [[spoiler:Or the Dark Brotherhood member ordering you to kill them. She even lampshades this by saying that you may only leave when 'someone' dies.]]
* TakesOneToKillOne: The only way to permanently kill a dragon is for another dragon (regardless of whether it has the body of a mortal or that of a dragon) to devour its soul.
* TakeThatPlayer: M'aiq the liar reappears [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mxx4Qf1-Xc once more]].
* TakeThatUs: In addition to telling off fans, M'aiq even takes cracks at ''the developers''.
-->"Nords are so serious about beards. So many beards. M'aiq thinks they wish they had glorious manes like Khajiit."
-->"M'aiq carries two weapons, to be safe. What if one breaks? That would be most unlucky." [[note]]A reference to weapons breaking from use in earlier games of the series.[[/note]]
-->"M'aiq is very practical. He has no need for Mysticism." [[note]]The Mysticism school of magic, a longtime mainstay of the series, was removed for ''Skyrim'', with the spells mostly shuffled into Conjuration.[[/note]]
-->"It does not matter to M'aiq how strong or smart one is. It only matters what one can do." [[note]]Before ''Skyrim'', TES games used an attribute system in addition to skill levels.[[/note]]
-->"M'aiq loves the people of Skyrim. Many interesting things they say to each other." [[note]]The highly repetitive NPC chatter of ''Oblivion'' drew quite a bit of criticism.[[/note]]
-->"M'aiq saw a mudcrab the other day. Filthy things." [[note]]A reference to a much-parodied bit of WelcomeToCorneria from Oblivion.[[/note]]
** The scatterbrained court mage of Riften may babble that "once, you could find calipers all over Tamriel, but not anymore!" Which is yet another thing M'aiq can comment on.
* TakeUpMySword: [[spoiler: The Harbinger of the Companions posthumously appoints the Dragonborn as his successor.]]
* TakeYourTime: No matter what you're doing or how urgent it seems to be, you can put it on hold and go off and spend months of game time doing something else. Delphine will wait patiently for you to attend a party while you're busy working your way through the ranks at the Thieves' Guild or the Mage College. The only thing that seems to be time sensitive is how long your followers will wait for you before returning home.
* TatteredFlag: A skeleton can be found in Winterhold clutching one, apparently from the last stand of the Knights of the Nine.
* TeamPet: Lis the frostbite spider, in the Dark Brotherhood sanctuary.
* TeleportingKeycardSquad: On a much larger scale. Due to the way quests work in this game, the item the NPC sends you to fetch may not necessarily exist in the dungeon they point you to beforehand, especially if you've murdered your way through it once before. As such, if the NPC sends you to a dungeon you've already happened to clear, the game will repopulate it so you still have to fight your way through it. In some cases, there may in fact be more enemies than when you did it the first time.
* TeleportSpam:
** Some Draugr bosses, such as Sigdis Gauldurson and Halldir. Jyrik Gauldurson also does this on his second encounter.
** Orchendor, the priest of Peryite, at the end of "The Only Cure."
** Mercer Frey appears to do this, but in fact he's just using invisibility.
** Lord Harkon in ''Dawnguard''.
* TempleOfDoom: The Nordic tombs and Dwemer ruins.
* ThemeMusicPowerUp: Fighting a dragon seems half as hard when you are backed by [[CrowningMusicOfAwesome a barbarian choir praising your awesomeness]].
* ThemeTuneCameo: A variation. The lyrics for "Dragonborn" can be found in-game in the book ''[[http://www.uesp.net/wiki/Skyrim:Songs_of_Skyrim Songs of Skyrim]]'', along with a translation.
** Ironically, the tune that goes with the lyrics has been lost to time in-universe. [[CaptainObvious You know, that tune you have probably heard a hundred times over.]]
* ThereIsAnother: While the Prophecy of the Dragonborn heavily implies that you are the ''[[LastOfTheirKind Last]]'', Arngeir seems to suggest there might be another. Finally confirmed in the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, which deals with the ''First'' Dragonborn seeking to return.
* TheyWalkAmongUs: Plenty of examples. You can be talking to a character and have no idea that you're conversing with a vampire, werewolf or daedra. There are ways to root them out, such as casting Detect Life or going into quests which expose them; but going by appearance, sound and behavior, you'd never know.
** That is until ''Dawnguard'' is installed, then all vampires gain glowing orange eyes.
* ThisIsGonnaSuck: You know pain is coming when Lydia utters this line (or whatever follower you're with uses their variation):
-->'''Lydia:''' I've got a bad feeling about this.
* TieredByName: Many enemies in ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim'' have auto-leveled variants distinguished from the base mook by some power ranking slapped after the name. For example: Draugr Wight, Draugr Deathlord, Reaver Marauder.
* TheFaceless: Miraak's face is never shown. Even after you kill him, [[spoiler: you eat his soul, so his flesh dissolves, meaning you still can't see his face even after looting his gear.]]
** [[spoiler: Console commands, however, reveal that he's a Nord, with receding hair and BlackEyesOfEvil, the latter presumably a side-effect of either learning too many of Hermaeus Mora's secrets or spending too much time in Apocrypha]].
* ThievesGuild: It's not doing well in this game.
* ThirdPersonPerson: The entire Khajiit race.
* TimeSkip: By far the largest one so far. With ''Oblivion'' taking place only forty years after ''Arena'' (the very first game), the previous four games were extremely close together in the ''Elder Scrolls'' timeline.
* TimeTravel: [[spoiler: Alduin couldn't be defeated the last time someone fought him, only sent forward in time to a point when there was someone who ''could'' defeat him - namely, the Dovahkiin.]] The Dovahkiin travels [[spoiler:the opposite way]] on two separate occasions.
* TitleDrop: Done for an individual quest. During peace negotiations in "Season Unending," Ulfric may warn Tullius, "Remember, Evgir unslaad", which is Dragon tongue for "Season Unending." In other words, "This [war] isn't over".
** A little bit earlier during the same quest, Arngeir also does a TitleDrop. He tells you that he hasn't much faith that these negotiations will produce lasting peace, as the ancient Nord words for war translate to "season unending".
* TooDumbToLive: Many bandits and criminals who get involved with the Dragonborn. Here are examples:
** Arvel the Swift in Bleak Falls Barrow is probably the first example of this trope you encounter. After you save his life and free him from the web he's encased in, he'll refuse to hand over the [[PlotCoupon Golden Claw]] and run recklessly ahead into a cave that at this point has proven to house all sorts of dangers, potentially pissing off someone who was skilled enough to kill a GiantSpider. Even if ''you'' don't kill him, he'll inevitably awaken all the Draugr up ahead, who will happily do the deed themselves. And if he somehow survives the Draugr gauntlet, he won't survive the swiveling spike wall trap tied to the pressure plate switch his running route takes him right over. Swift in ''body'', maybe...
** In Ravenscar Hollow, you find a raider in a cage who begs you to free him from the Hagravens who imprisoned him. After dealing with the Hagravens and freeing him, he attempts to mug you. The one who just took on three Hagravens. And he wears nothing but rags. And he doesn't attack you without announcing it.
** Similarly, the mad necromancer in Rannveig's Fast smugly explains how he's going to kill you while slowly walking away with his back to you. The number of players who let him finish his speech is likely very low.
** Following the Thieves' Guild storyline, some bandits in [[spoiler:the Pilgrim's Path]] come under this. [[spoiler:Stealing from Nocturnal is not exactly recommended at the best of times, but they really couldn't have picked a worse place than her conduit to Mundus.]]
** The random 'your money or your life' type of thieves you encounter in the wilderness. Sometimes they see you fight and kill a dragon, and then decide it's a good idea to attempt to rob said dragon-slaying badass. You can tell them that they're literally ''not worth your time'' and they will ''still'' attack you.
** A female dark elf in a dungeon asks you to clear the way for her. The dungeon is full of undead and dangerous traps, and she has only basic clothes and maybe a low grade dagger. After you've done all the work, she rushes into the main chamber, shouting "It's my treasure! Mine!", and runs right into the most deadly trap in the dungeon. The "treasure" is in fact the lure to said trap, containing mostly worthless loot, while the trap itself reveals a staircase to the ''real'' treasure: [[spoiler:a Word Wall, which would have been useless to her anyway.]]
** One of the wizards at the college attempts to recreate the circumstances that led to the extinction of the Dwemer, who have vanished from reality. You find him the materials, he begins the experiment and... he vanishes from reality. Uh, [[GoneHorriblyRight success]]?
** Malkoran, a necromancer, sets up shop in [[EldritchAbomination Daedric Prince]] Meridia's temple. Meridia is a very powerful godlike being, and she passionately ''hates'' the undead - and those who would raise them.
** During the College of Winterhold questline, an aide of Ancano's follows you to Labyrinthian and waits at the exit to try to take the artifact you've just collected. Because clearly, someone who can survive a trek through a centuries-old tomb filled with ghosts, Draugr, and an ''undead dragon priest'' is going to be a complete pushover.
** Rochelle the Red for getting the [[SarcasmMode brilliant idea]] of kidnapping the Dragonborn's spouse.
** Just about any dragon who thinks it's a good idea to attack the College of Winterhold.
** Sunderstone Gorge is a cavern complex absolutely full of burning oil and other flammables. It is inhabited by a group of fire mages, who apparently cannot make the obvious equation.
* TomeOfEldritchLore: The Black Books from the ''Dragonborn'' DLC.
* TookALevelInBadass: All races, especially Bosmer, Argonians and Khajiit.
** Mudcrabs are bulkier, hardier, hide buried in riverbeds before bursting out to attack, and can inflict noticeable damage this time around.
** [[FinishingMove Finishing moves]] and DualWielding make conventional combat significantly more brutal than before and offensive spells now include [[StarWars Sith-style]] chain lightning, [[IncendiaryExponent setting yourself on fire]] to burn anyone who gets close, and hurling yard-long icicles that impale people!
** Remember Netches from ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind''? Those flying jellyfish with hitboxes twice their size that were fairly easy to kill despite their InformedAbility to be dangerous? Well, now, as of the ''Dragonborn'' DLC, they really ARE dangerous.
** "I've played ''Daggerfall''. Those giants [[TemptingFate shouldn't prove too much of a problem]]... uh, why am I suddently on the moon?"
* TookALevelInJerkass: The Altmer (high elves) go from snobbish and stuck up to truly astounding levels of dickery, even ''before'' you include the Great War and the White-Gold Concordat. For example, they've annexed Valenwood and vassalized Elsweyr, making the Bosmer and Khajiit into servants. Also, if you kill one of their kind, ''just one, even if he just tried to destroy the world,'' they'll put out a hit on you.
** That describes the Thalmor, the government of Alinor/Summerset Isle and the Aldmeri Dominion. Altmer not hailing from the Dominion tend to be slightly less dickish, if for no other reason that they [[NoTrueScotsman aren't true Altmer to the Thalmor]].
** The Blades. There are only two in game, but for people whose purpose is to ''serve'' the Dragonborn they have an odd tendency to treat you as a lackey, making demands and presenting ultimatums unless you follow those demands.
* TorchesAndPitchforks: When they learn about the vampire lair close to their town, the inhabitants of Morthal decide to form a mob and confront the vampires, complete with torches (but sadly no pitchforks). However, when you get to the lair the mob chickens out, sending you inside on your own.
* TownWithADarkSecret: Markarth. [[spoiler:At least half of the townspeople are [[ImAHumanitarian humanitarians.]] One of them even tends a meat stall, which has the slogan of 'Bloodiest Beef in the Reach']].
** You've also got the Forsworn, who [[BlatantLies are totally not killing people in the street]] [[spoiler: or anyone who opposes [[IOwnThisTown the Silver-Blood family,]] and are [[BlatantLies totally not]] working for [[BoxedCrook Madanach, who's totally not locked in the Silver-Blood mine/prison.]]]]
* [[TrademarkFavoriteFood Trademark Favorite Drink]]: Mead, for most Nords.
** There's even a song about it. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCHq0m67lq8]]
* TrashTalk: Apparently a time-honored tradition in Tamriel - literally everyone in Skyrim will taunt you in a fight, including the ''dragons''. The "Throw Voice" shout also allows you to mock and confuse your opponents with ventriloquism.
** Alduin is particularly fond of it. This is not surprising, given that he's a ridiculously arrogant, semi-divine dragon. If you hear the word ''joor'' (mortal) come out of his mouth, it's a good bet he's mocking you.
* TraumaInducedAmnesia: A [[spoiler:cannibal]] priestess claims that the Dovahkiin has repressed memories of [[spoiler:losing a sibling when they were children, and [[ImAHumanitarian eating the corpse out of curiosity.]]]] Whether or not this is true is up to the player to decide.
** Her whole spiel runs into a bit of FridgeLogic if [[spoiler:the Dovahkiin is a werewolf running around eating people to stay in beast form, or even just a dedicated alchemist who ate some human flesh to find out what potions they could make from it. Or if they're a Bosmer, for whom cannibalism would be a normal and accepted part of their race's culture]].
* TreacherousQuestGiver: ''Many''.
* TreasureMap: You can filch some off bandits, leading you to hidden chests.
* TrialByCombat: To get into Shor's Hall in Sovngarde, you first have to give your credentials to the guard, then fight him to half health.
* TrickArrow: In the ''Dawnguard'' DLC, you get to find Dwemer schematics for enchanted crossbow bolts. [[MadeOfExplodium Exploding fire arrows]], anyone?
** Quite often, these exploding crossbow bolts are recoverable from the corpse of whatever was shot with them. An exploding arrow that rematerializes afterward is perhaps the trickiest of all.
* TrophyWife: In the orc stronghold Dushnikh Yal, Chief Burguk's latest wife, Shel, is all tarted up, and basically does nothing but be the Chief's arm candy. His other wives man the defensive walls and work the forge with their respective children by Burguk.
* TryEverything: One of the two ways you find out an alchemy ingredient's properties is tasting it to learn the first property. The other way is by combining it willy-nilly with whatever else you have on hand; the game helps you with this by keeping track of combinations you have already tried and greying them out. The Experimenter perk makes tasting items more efficient, eventually revealing all four properties if you get all three ranks.
* TwentyBearAsses: Temba Wide-Arm goes halfway towards a literal example, requiring you to bring her ten bear pelts.
* TwentyFourHourArmor: Not only is the player character free to wear the same set of heavy plate armour all day and every day, the guards of holds can be seen sleeping in their armour in the hold's barracks. They don't even take off their full-face helmets.
[[/folder]]
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[[redirect:Skyrim/TropesNToT]]
14th Aug '14 3:55:24 PM applebeveragesaur
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* StealthPun: Dragons' powers, such as breathing fire, are powered by speaking words of their ancient language. The game describes this as "deadly verbal debate", or in other words, a flame war.
2nd Aug '14 6:34:12 PM ThePope
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* NoHeroDiscount: Averted in a sense. While being a good person doesn't net you a discount when it comes to purchases, merchants for whom you've done favours will allow you to take some items off their shelves without considering it stealing, and they regularly restock. As long as an item's name isn't red when you interact with it, help yourself with no repercussions!

to:

* NoHeroDiscount: Averted in a sense. While being a good person doesn't net you a discount when it comes to purchases, merchants for whom you've done favours favors will allow you to take some items off their shelves without considering it stealing, and they regularly restock. As long as an item's name isn't red when you interact with it, help yourself with no repercussions!



* [[TrademarkFavouriteFood Trademark Favourite Drink]]: Mead, for most Nords.

to:

* [[TrademarkFavouriteFood [[TrademarkFavoriteFood Trademark Favourite Favorite Drink]]: Mead, for most Nords.
2nd Aug '14 1:43:39 AM Zaptech
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** ''All'' of the [[TheHunter Vigilants of Stendarr]]. In-universe, the Vigil is an order of, essentially, clerics, who track down and destroy those beings who prey on humans - werewolves, vampires, daedra and daedra worshipers. In gameplay, they are ''phenomenally'' incompetent. They can't recognize werewolves unless they transform right in front of them, and are apparently unaware that there's a virtual ''clan'' of them in Whiterun. They apparently cannot recognize weapons conjured from the depths of Oblivion, and will actually comment on the "pretty colors" of them. They do not recognize daedric artifacts - running around completely kitted up in them will not draw a comment. For perspective, even the ''regular town guards'' can tell with some artifacts that they are evil things. Once you install ''Dawnguard'', though, it reaches its apogee (or is it nadir?): Their hall and leaders have been completely destroyed by vampires, giving them serious motivation to find vampires, and the plugin grants an appearance overhaul to vampires, giving them FacialMarkings, "unhealthy" sunken cheeks and sallow skin, and brilliant, red-orange GlowingEyesOfDoom. Will they be able to tell if the Dragonborn is a vampire? No.
28th Jul '14 7:15:48 AM Fighteer
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** This could be because it could tell you to beat a Dragon Priest or some other undead, which 'Kill' wouldn't fit well.
25th Jul '14 3:48:58 PM ShamanOfHedon
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** From one cave the Dragonborn can find a bandit taken captive by witches, who can be freed and will help out to clear the dungeon from the remaining hostiles. What does he do afterwards? Attempt to rob his savior. While naked and armed with only a (dwarven) dagger.
20th Jul '14 8:27:52 AM DoctorHojo
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**This could be because it could tell you to beat a Dragon Priest or some other undead, which 'Kill' wouldn't fit well.
18th Jul '14 3:19:45 AM ChaoticQueen
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* ThePiratesWhoDontDoAnything: The members of the Thieves Guild, the Dark Brotherhood, and the Companions never actually seem to get up to any thieving, assassinating, or mercenary work (unless, of course, they're teaming up with the Dragonborn for a quest). Instead, they just sit around their respective clubhouses, chatting with each other and fobbing off work on the new recruit. [[spoiler:They continue to do this even after the new recruit is ostensibly [[EnsignNewbie the new boss]].]]
18th Jul '14 2:13:52 AM Craverguy
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Added DiffLines:

* ThePiratesWhoDontDoAnything: The members of the Thieves Guild, the Dark Brotherhood, and the Companions never actually seem to get up to any thieving, assassinating, or mercenary work (unless, of course, they're teaming up with the Dragonborn for a quest). Instead, they just sit around their respective clubhouses, chatting with each other and fobbing off work on the new recruit. [[spoiler:They continue to do this even after the new recruit is ostensibly [[EnsignNewbie the new boss]].]]
10th Jul '14 12:17:47 PM MadCat221
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** The lethality of the most famous [[MakeMeWannaShout Shout]], [[BlownAcrossTheRoom Unrelenting Force]], is not from the blast wave but from the potential of inflicting this. If the sudden stop at the end doesn't kill a foe outright, oftentimes they'll still be really hurtin'.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Skyrim.TropesN-T