[[quoteright:297:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/eso_logo_962.jpg]]
''Franchise/TheElderScrolls Online'' is an MMORPG developed by Zenimax Online Studios. Taking place in the Second Era roughly 1,000 years before the events of ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'', you play as a hero attempting to stop the Daedric Prince [[BigBad Molag Bal]] from taking over Tamriel and recovering your soul that was taken by him. Things are also complicated by the fact that the Imperial throne has sided with the evil Prince, and now Tamriel is in an all-out war between Cyrodiil and three alliances vying for control of it.

It was released on April 4th, 2014 for Mac and PC (with a 3-to-5-day early start for preorders), with the UsefulNotes/{{PS4}} and UsefulNotes/XBoxOne versions set for a June 9, 2015 release date. On March 17, 2015, the payment model changed to only require the initial purchase, with an optional premium account system offered as well.
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!! Provides examples of:

* AbusivePrecursors: The Ayleid, or Wild Elves, were this to Tamriel, enslaving most of the other races and generally treating them like animals. The Dwemer were this as well but not to such an extent.
* AdjectiveAnimalAlehouse: "The Sleepy Eaglet" in Skywatch, and "The Screaming Mermaid" in Port Hunding.
* TheAlliance: All three major playable warring factions.
* AlwaysCheckBehindTheChair: Treasure chests are often found hidden in out-of-the-way locations.
* AnAdventurerIsYou: Many of the classes can take on the different roles, but the most common class for Healer is Templar, since one of the Templar skill lines is devoted to healing.
* AndYourRewardIsClothes: A few costumes are obtained by reaching a certain character level. The most difficult costume to obtain - and therefore easily the most exclusive - is the [[http://uesp.net/wiki/Online:Costumes#Emperor.27s_Regalia Emperor's Regalia]], which is unlocked if you become Emperor.
* AnimalMotifs: Each Alliance is represented by an animal on their banners and sometimes armor: an eagle for the Aldmeri Dominion, a dragon for the Ebonheart Pact, and a lion for the Daggerfall Covenant.
* AnimalisticAbomination: Occasionally the Daedric Princes take on animal-like forms when they appear to you; for instance an Aspect of Hircine appears to be a ghostly deer.
* AnotherSideAnotherStory: Once you beat the main quest, you can go through one of the other two faction's main quests with the same character. This is justified with some Daedric magic, and the question "what would have happened had you washed up on a different beach?" Once you complete the second faction's quests, as well, you can do the third faction's quests.
* AntiHumanAlliance: The Aldmeri Dominion is explicitly against a human-dominated Tamriel.
* ArrowsOnFire: Enemies will spill oil on the ground and yell "Light it up!", and then enemy archers shoot flaming arrows into it to set it ablaze.
* ArtifactTitle: Averted for the [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion third]] [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim game]] in a row. Multiple Elder Scrolls can be found within temples in Cyrodiil which can grant blessings for all the players in a particular alliance that control them during PvP.
* AsskickingEqualsAuthority: If an Alliance captures all six forts around the Imperial City, the highest-scoring player from that faction becomes the Emperor.
* AuthorityEqualsAsskicking: Upon becoming Emperor, a player receives several passive skills that make them even better in PvP combat.
* {{Autosave}}: Being an MMO, everything that you do is automatically saved, making a life of crime a bit riskier in comparison to other Elder Scrolls games.
* {{Backstab}}: There are several skills or [[SetBonus item sets]] that deal more damage if used behind the target. Also, hitting a [[ChargedAttack heavy attack]] while sneaking will briefly stun the target: as being discovered negates this bonus, melee attackers have to hit from behind, although it's technically possible for a bow user to achieve this even if the enemy is facing them, due to their range.
* BadassArmy: Every faction has one. Even Molag Bal and his army of Dremora qualify, completely unflinching in their every action.
* BadassBeard: You can give your character one. Sai Sahan, one of the prominent characters of the main quest, also has one.
-->'''Sai Sahan:''' "There is an old Redguard proverb: A man is only as great as the beard that wears him. A full and healthy beard carries with it a sense of great honor and wisdom. Also crumbs."
* BagOfHolding: You can hold far more items than a person would logically be able to.
* BatOutOfHell: Giant bats are relatively common creatures. There are even werebats on one island in Valenwood (though they only appear in bat form).
* BattleCouple: The Rings of Mara allow you and another player to become this, and any married couple in a party with one another gain a small EXP bonus for both characters.
* BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor: Plays a role in several sidequests, concerning people who made the mistake of trying to bargain with a Daedric Prince.
* BigBad: The Daedric Prince of Domination himself, [[GodOfEvil Molag Bal]].
* BigFancyHouse: You can visit ([[KleptomaniacHero and break into]]) several manors in the game, such as the one in Skywatch.
* BigGood:
** [[spoiler: Meridia]] often plays this, [[spoiler: but is still as ruthless as any other [[BlueAndOrangeMorality Daedric Prince]].]]
** The Prophet/[[spoiler:Varen Aquilarios]]
* {{Bishonen}}: Male elves, especially Altmer, can be this.
* BiTheWay:
** Jakarn, the Breton thief you recruit for Kaleen, who refers to the player character as "Good Looking" regardless of gender. He also is a notorious womanizer and has convinced people of both genders that he's in love with them.
** The player characters can be become this, as the Rings of Mara are not tied to character genders.
* BlindSeer: The Prophet has gone blind after reading Elder Scrolls, but he is still quite perceptive and has some power.
* BorderPatrol: Try swimming too far away from a shoreline, and prepare to be eaten alive by a school of slaughterfish. Cyrodiil's Imperial City also has a moat around it inexplicably filled with them, so falling in there will make you fish bait in a few seconds regardless of the water's depth.
* BowAndSwordInAccord: Very well possible for any class - the class does not limit what sort of weapons can be used.
* BreakableWeapons: And armors too. Every equipable item (sans jewelry and disguises) has a set amount of endurance and will break after sufficient use, rendering its bonuses unavailable (and potentially negating [[SetBonus Set Bonuses]]) until repaired. The thing that hits the hardest on equipment endurance is death: regular fighting will eat through your items much slower. Thankfully, every NPC that can sell items can also repair equipment.
** It used to be that equipment would also slowly lose its capabilities as it degraded (armor offered less physical resistance, weapons would hit for less), but that was mercifully patched out.
* BreakingTheFourthWall: Sheogorath is fond of this, as he will casually detail the plots of other ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'' titles, and all but telling you that a choice in a quest will give you "2 Skill Points."
* BribingYourWayToVictory: The ESO Plus optional subscription is often accused of being this, as it gives you bonuses to experience gain, gold accrual and access to DLC, which in turn grants access to quests and dungeons that offer equipment unavailable to regular players.
* BrickJoke: The Alliance Trailer begins with a Nord fighting undead Werewolves in a cave. At the end of the trailer, one of those werewolves bursts out of the ground in an [[ScrewThisImOuttaHere attempt to flee]], only to be quickly dragged back under by the Nord, who climbs out himself a second later.
* CallBack: Quite a lot.
** Sheogorath, naturally, references all the previous games during his questline including name-checking the Staff of Chaos and Numidium. Which is odd considering that those events won't be taking place for another 800 or so years. Archmage Shalidor is also a questgiver in this plotline.
** A [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind naked Nord]] sends the player on a quest to find the witch that robbed him.
* CartographySidequest: The PlayerCharacter's map already includes the entirety of Tamriel's geography (or at least the game's avaliable zones), so achievements are given for discovering the points of interest in a zone, completing caves, and completing a certain number of quests in each zone, not by discovering terrain.
* ChargedAttack: You can charge an attack by holding down the button longer; this makes the attack more powerful and restore either stamina or magicka.
* TheChosenOne: The player isn't the only one fighting Molag Bal's Daedra and Dark Anchors, but from each player's view they're the only one who has escaped from Coldharbour and returned to Tamriel after having their soul stolen, and is working with the Five Companions.
* CityGuards: Prior to Update 6, guards were just in cities to help make cities appear more populated. Update 6 adds unkillable guards, specifically named "(City Name) Guard" or "(Alliance) Guard". When you've got a bounty the guards will come after you when they see you, either to collect the bounty or to attack you depending on your heat.
* CombatMedic: Being a Templar and/or specializing in the Restoration Staff weapon type allows you to become one. A perk in the Support Skill line, only available through the Alliance War in Cyrodiil, increases the power of your healing when you're near a Keep, fittingly named "Combat Medic".
* CombinationAttack: "Synergy". Some attacks will give another nearby player a prompt that they can activate the Synergy, which is a bonus attack done at the same time at no extra cost.
* TheComputerIsACheatingBastard: Most melee moves by enemies ''will'' hit you, no matter how much you try to dodge it - you can be ten feet away and a tiger swiping its claws will still make contact somehow.
** If an enemy chases a player too far away, they'll start running back to their starting position. While they're doing this, they can't be hit by any attack, even ranged ones.
* ContinuityNod: Most of Molag Bal's generals that can appear at Dark Anchors appeared in previous games; [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Lord Dregas Volar, Hrelvesuu, Menta Na, Gedna Relvel]], [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Kathutet, Amkaos, Ranyu, Anaxes, Medrike]], and [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Velehk Sain]].
** In [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]], there was a legendary enchanted dagger called the "Fang of Haynekhtnamet". If you find yourself in Shadowfen and wander southeast of Stormhold, you can actually fight him (or the latest member of a [[LegacyCharacter series of Haynekhtnamets]]). There is a chance that he'll drop a unique [[http://i67.tinypic.com/2mxy74.png dagger]]
** The Dark Brotherhood DLC features Mirabelle Motierre, a presumed ancestor to [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Francois]] and [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Amaund Motierre]] of Oblivion and Skyrim respectively.
* ContinuitySnarl: Shalidor mentions reassembling the fragments of the Numidium. However at the time of the game, the Numidium is still intact (and in the safekeeping of the Tribunal).
** [=NPCs=] in Morrowind note that the Tribunal haven't made their annual pilgrimage to Red Mountain, a reference to the events of Morrowind. However the return of Dagoth Ur won't take place for another 300 years. That said, there might be other reasons the Tribunal aren't making the pilgrimage like being busy with the Alliance War.
** ''The Lusty Argonian Maid'', a [[RunningGag recurring joke]] since its inception in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]]'' makes an appearance in Online. The play's author, Crassius Curio wouldn't even be born for another eight hundred years or so.
* CosmeticAward: Completing most achievements will net you a new dye color. If you obtain certain veteran rank levels, you will unlock a special costume to wear, and you will earn the Emperor's Regalia if you become Emperor. There is also a dungeon that gives you a Dwemer Spider vanity pet as a reward.
* CriticalHit: These can occur, and the likeliness of it happening can be boosted. They have no graphic indicators, however, leaving you to either turn on the damage numbers or to memorize how much of an enemy's HP bar your abilities reduce to know when you crit.
* CurbStompBattle: The battle in the "Arrival" trailer. The three faction leaders that we saw in the "Alliance" trailer take on a platoon of dremora. [[spoiler:The Breton ends up possessed and attacking the Imperial City with an army of undead while the other two barely escape with their lives.]] Pretty much almost the entire time all three of them are very hard-pressed to stay alive, and the only reason they live is because the High Elf woman brings down one of the chains attaching the Dark Anchor to the ground, causing a massive statue to collapse on top of the battle area.
* CutAndPasteEnvironments: Many dungeons and buildings use the same layouts.
* DamageIncreasingDebuff: Several skills can augment the damage a target receives. Generally, if a skill reduces an enemy's resistances it will apply the Breach (for Spell Resistance) or Fracture (for Physical Resistance) effects. Other skills are more specific, like Focused Aim, which increases damage received through bow attacks only.
* DamagerHealerTank: While the usual MMO trinity of roles is present in the game, it offers a bit of malleability as the classes are not bound to a specific role and, due to how the combat system works, a party is much more effective if every member can deal damage, cycle through utility buffs and sustain themselves in some way.
* DamnYouMuscleMemory: For those used to ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'', anyways - in Skyrim, power attacks [[UnblockableAttack break through block]]. In ESO, it's the other way around.
* DeathIsASlapOnTheWrist: JustifiedTrope in that due to being offered to Molag Bal as slaves and having their souls stolen, all of the PC's get resurrected infinite times. This is even written into the game lore: you can find a book detailing the concept of a "paragon" soul, a special kind of soul that allows Soul Shriven to not deteriorate and instantly revive. The only penalty is armor damage.
* DefeatEqualsExplosion: Fire atronachs explode upon death.
* DefectorFromDecadence: Imperials as a race, who can join any Alliance. They are described as 'outcasts' from Cyrodiil, who have turned against the Daedra-worshipping majority of their race and would conceivably aid any alliance in order to 'free' their brethren from Molag Bal's influence.
* DisproportionateRetribution: Some [=NPCs=] will try to kill you if they witness you stealing something or catch you pickpocketing, or see you killing livestock.
* DistressedDude: In Coldharbour the player encounters a character named Stibbons, who has been abducted by a winged twilight who is attempting to seduce him. Upon being freed and trying to make his way to the Hollow City, he gets abducted by female daedra again.
* DoorToBefore: Most dungeons have a door near the entrance that can only be accessed from the other side of it, once you complete the dungeon.
* TheDragon: Mannimarco serves Molag Bal, although he's also TheStarscream, wanting to obtain power greater than the Prince's.
* DrawAggro: Puncture and Inner Fire are the only two skills that force an enemy to attack the user, and vital to any tank in dungeons.
* DressingAsTheEnemy: Several quests involve you donning a disguise to fool enemies into letting you pass, or at least making them less likely to detect you. However, there's usually some archetype (typically Sentries or animals) that is never fooled, and will expose you if they attack.
** PaperThinDisguise: Your chosen race won't affect how effective your disguise is, even if the disguise doesn't have any sort of head covering.
* DualWielding: One-handed weapon types can be dual-wielded; there's even a skill line for dual-wielding.
* EldritchLocation: Coldharbour.
* EleventhHourSuperpower: Shortly before the final battle [[spoiler:Abnur Tharn sacrifices one of your companions to power up the Amulet of Kings]], and grant you the ultimate power. with this power boost, you can three-shot ''the titans'' that try to stop you even with an average build, not to mention one-shotting all the dark seducers who get in your way.
* EmoteAnimation: Over a hundred of them. One of the most popular is /lute, which has your character play one of the bard songs on the lute.
* EnemyMine:
** The Ebonheart Pact is comprised of the Dunmer and their two most hated enemies, the Nords and Argonians. They are only working together because of the threat posed by their mutual enemies. In-practice however, the members of the faction are capable of cooperating decently enough.
** This is also the reason the Khajiit joined the Dominion: the Altmer helped them when the Knahaten Flu stuck, and explained that they'd need the help of the Khajiit to defend Tamriel from invaders. To quote the lorebook "The Eagle and the Cat": ''"To fight against mutual enemies - ah, that was a logic we Cat-folk could understand."''
** There is also [[spoiler: Eyevea, the Mages' Guild headquarters.]] You can be a ranking Ebonheart officer having a polite conversation with a top researcher from the Dominion, and that's the norm.
--> '''Dunmer''': "The centuries of hatred between my people and... ''most'' of Tamriel seems somehow petty in a place like this."
* EvenEvilHasLovedOnes: At one point during the Riften questline, you need to make a ritual sacrifice in order to pass through a sealed door. You have the option to sacrifice a member of the Reachmen, a race of [[AlwaysChaoticEvil Chaotic Evil]] Hagraven worshipers. If you do choose him for the sacrifice, you have to trick him into thinking you're leading him out of enemy territory. On the way to the door, he will proceed to tell you about his ''eight-year old daughters'', and how they cried when he went to war. There is horror in his voice when he discovers you're not there to free him.
* EverythingFades: Dead enemies fade after being looted.
* EvilEmpire: The Akaviri Potentate practices slavery and worships Molag Bal.
* {{Expy}}: The three main factions (Ebonheart, Aldmeri, Daggerfall) are each roughly equivalent in theme to ''VideoGame/DarkAgeOfCamelot's'' Midgard, Hibernia, and Albion (respectively).
* ExtremeOmnivore: The easiest way to learn potion ingredients is to eat them. Some recipes can also fall into this: fans didn't like the idea of Grilled Worms, Maggot Haggis, and Rodent Muffins, so these were removed with the provisioning overhaul in Update 6.
** Werewolves with the Devour passive seem to fit this as well. They can eat anything from deer and goats, to [[MonstrousCannibalism other wolves]], to Daedra and even ''Dwemer constructs''. Basically if you can kill it, you can eat it.
* FantasticRacism: The game is riddled with it. The Ebonheart Pact consists of the [[OurElvesAreBetter Dunmer]] and the two races that were their worst enemies before the [[EnemyMine Akaviri Invasion]]. The Veiled Heritance in the [[AntiHumanAlliance Aldmeri Dominion]] see the [[OurElvesAreBetter Bosmer]] and [[{{Catfolk}} Khajiit]] as lesser races (although they seem to hate every other race just as much). Many human members of the Daggerfall Covenant still struggle to accept that the [[OurOrcsAreDifferent Orcs]] are a sentient race. Those are just a few examples. Needless to say, most characters despise races from the other alliances.
* FaustianRebellion: The vampire coven that players can join is of the Cyrodiilic Bloodline, descended directly from [[WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds Lamae Bal]], the oldest vampire in existence, the MonsterProgenitor of the Cyrodiilic Bloodline, and is believed to be the first Daughter of Coldharbour. She ''hates'' Molag Bal for [[RapeAsBackstory certain]] [[RapeIsASpecialKindOfEvil reasons]], and intends to turn the entire Cyrodiilic Bloodline against him. [[spoiler:And she's '''''still alive'''''. At this point, her crusade against Molag has become a full-blown RoaringRampageOfRevenge, with her also [[RageAgainstTheHeavens hating Arkay]], whom she believes abandoned her in her time of need.]]
* FauxAffablyEvil: While Sheogorath tends to present himself as all fun and games in previous titles (save for Shivering Isles), we see a particularly malicious side of him in TESO. It still doesn't stop him from being utterly hilarious, however.
* FeatheredFiend: Harpies.
* FetchQuest: There are plenty of these.
* FilkSong:
** Music/{{Malukah}} wrote ''[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zXdbKz5u-a4 Beauty of Dawn]]'' when Zenimax told her the plot of the game and asked her to write a song about it. It ended up getting used as the credits of the game.
** Music/MiracleOfSound's ''[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a-HyYklN55U The Call]]''.
* FishingMinigame: It's possible to fish, and achievements can be unlocked for catching all the rare fish in a particular area. The achievements for catching all the fish in a faction actually earn you a dye color for your armor, as well.
* ForegoneConclusion:
** The interregnum in the second era was notorious for having so many "Emperors", that history never bothered to record many of their names. And no matter the toss-up between which faction wins the throne, the closing years of the Second Era will see the rise of Tiber Septim and the Third Empire of Men, and the first truly pan-Tamrielic empire.
** Molag Bal's attempt to fuse Tamriel with Coldharbour is doomed to failure, as ESO takes place before all the previous Elder Scrolls games.
** Safe to say the Ebonheart Pact falls through after the game ends. Nords and Dumner go right back to hating each other and Dumner resume their Argonian slavery practices, probably razing any free Argonian settlements in the process.
* FriendlyFireproof: Update 6 gives you the option to murder innocent [=NPCs=], and it adds a menu option to turn that off if you do not wish to do it by accident.
* FungusHumongous: Morrowind has plenty of gigantic mushrooms.
* GameMod: Fans can make ones that alter the UI.
* GenderedOutfit: Averted with dresses and suits from the cash shop; men and women can wear them both.
* GiantEnemyCrab: Mudcrab Beach has a larger-than-normal mudcrab as a boss.
* GodzillaThreshold The Daggerfall invasion of the start of the Pact storyline forces them to summon Balreth, the Brother of Strife wich curbstomps the force. Then you have to put him back, however...
* GravityBarrier: The edge of each region (except for the sea, of course, which has [[BorderPatrol slaughterfish]]) is bordered by gigantic cliffs that you cannot climb.
* HarpingOnAboutHarpies: Harpies make a reappearance for the first time since Daggerfall.
* HellishHorse: The Nightmare Courser, available from the cash shop, has flaming eyes, nostrils, and hooves.
* HighDiveHijinks: Wrothgar has an achievement for jumping off a high cliff and surviving.
* HistoricalInJoke: In game, no less. The reason [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Wuuthrad is shattered?]] [[spoiler:The Worm Cult was using it to empower the ghost of a giant it slaughtered.]]
* HitPoints: Played straight. The only thing hit points are for is being the barrier that separates you from [[DeathIsASlapOnTheWrist an armor repair bill and a mildly inconvenient relocation]].
* HonorBeforeReason: The Redguards hold their ancestors in very high respect, including the corpses of ancestors raised as Undead. Most Redguards would rather run away before dishonoring themselves by fighting them. This becomes quite a problem thanks to a group of Necromancers who know that all too well.
* HornedHumanoid: A few of the "adornment" options in the character select for Bosmer allows your character to have small horns or antlers.
* HorseOfADifferentColor: Guar, bear, and senche mounts are available in the cash shop.
* {{HUD}}: As in ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim'', it strives to be as minimalistic as possible, showing mosly your three resources, your equipped skills (which even disappear when not in combat), the compass and current objectives. However, the presence of a chat window and the fact that regular play involves constantly checking your skills and inventory menus can potentially break any sort of immersion derived from this.
* HyperactiveMetabolism: While healing is usually reserved for potions (and even those heal instantly and give a small regeneration effect for a few seconds), eating food grants buffs to your maximum health, stamina and/or magicka instantly, and can be done as fast as you want with no repercussion whatsoever. [[CutsceneIncompetence Of course]], when you actually have a quest involving a drinking contest, expect your character to [[VomitIndiscretionShot puke]] after three drinks and pass out after five.
* ImplacableMan: The trailers show the dremora as being this. Even in the middle of a pitched battle during the "Siege" trailer, a platoon of them aren't even slowed down by a group of Ebonheart soldiers smashing into the front ranks. Pretty much everything they do, they do at a [[UnflinchingWalk slow, foreboding walk]].
* InexplicableTreasureChests: Much like collectible crafting materials found while trekking through Tamriel, there are several spots in every map where treasure chests can spawn. These are usually well-hidden and offer decent loot and a bit of experience for the leveling adventurer, but are mostly unexplained; a few players might be able to find hints in some dropped letters and such that point towards a chest location (therefore implying that somebody actually put those items there), yet the vast majority of chests have no explanation whatsoever.
** Notable aversions to this trope exist in the form of lockboxes, which spawn in populated areas and contain items to steal, and so can be explained as being the personal cache of one of the NPCs nearby, and Undaunted chests, which contain random equipment specifically to reward daring members of the guild.
* InexplicablyPreservedDungeonMeat: Leveling up the Provisioner skill line means having to be constantly checking the scenery for vegetables, fruit and meat to use in cooking, as it has no real "gatherer nodes" the other crafting lines have. What this means is that some spiderweb-filled, bug-riddled dungeons are basically Provisioner harvesting grounds, as they have a great number of crates and barrels (not hermetically sealed in the least) that somehow always contain perfectly preserved ingredients to make food and drink.
* InsanityImmunity: Sir Cadwell is the only Soul Shriven of Coldharbour who isn't a hostile psychopath since he was already mad when he got there. In fact, he quite likes it there.
* InterspeciesRomance: There are several examples of this: at least two Bosmer-Khajiit couples, and a Redguard-Altmer couple, for instance.
* ItsPersonal: One of the reasons why Queen Ayrenn wants to take over Cyrodiil is to take revenge on Abnur Tharn, who had caused her great suffering several years ago.
* JaywalkingWillRuinYourLife: Played with. If you fail a pickpocket once, the guards will come looking for you, and if you happen to have no gold in your inventory, they will KILL YOU for being unable to pay what you are clearly worth in weapons and armor. If you pay the bill, you're in the clear but the guards will confiscate all your stolen goods, even if the total value is in the thousands. If you DO manage to get away, you'll be unable to stroll through towns for about 30 minutes unless you go through illegal channels or forfeit all your pilfered goods. Compared to the toll for murder, which is a mere THREE TIMES as much bounty as pickpocketing, there really is little incentive for players to pick pockets if they're the murdering type.
* {{Jerkass}}: The comments made by the guards in the Daggerfall Covenant tend to be rather scathing, such as ''"If I want your opinion, I'll give it to you."'' and ''"If you want to lose ten pounds of ugly fat, I'll be happy to cut off your head."''
* JokeItem: Many of the items that you can steal only serve as two things: VendorTrash and humor, either in the form of funny descriptions or through FridgeLogic. Why would a random commoner have a jar of centipedes in their pocket?
* KarmaHoudini: [[spoiler:Any of the three DiscOneFinalBoss characters for each alliance; specifically, High Kinlady Estre, Anghof the Undying, or Thallion Wormfather; has the chance to become this in Coldharbour. After being sent to Coldharbour for failing Molag Bal, they're forced to compete in a 'game' where they have to use their minions to kill two of the others for a chance to get back into Molag Bal's good graces, and their minions consist of Mage's Guild members you have to rescue. At the end of the quest, you have a chance to either save the DiscOneFinalBoss, or the Mages... or [[TakeAThirdOption both]], by threatening to kill the Observer over and over again until he gives in to your demands, which would ''permanently'' disrupt the game. The one you chose to save undergoes a HeelFaceTurn of sorts, and joins your army against Molag Bal.]]
* KillTheGod: Magistrix Vox attempts to do this to the Tribunal in the Deshaan questline.
* KleptomaniacHero: Now possible to be this, after the Justice System was added. Stealing can be quite profitable.
* LeaveNoWitnesses: Averted. Even if you kill everyone who witnessed the crime, your bounty doesn't go down like it does in main-series games.
* LegacyCharacter:
** The Wilderking/queen is always a mortal who takes up the mantle of the Wilderking/queen, losing the memories of who they originally were.
** There is a new Silvenar and Green Lady of the Bosmer once per generation. A portion of the Aldmeri Dominion quests involve helping the new Silvenar and Green Lady rise to power after the death of the current ones.
* LevelLockedLoot: Each armor or weapon has a level on it that you must be at before using it. Also, some crafting materials require you to achieve a certain level in that craft and spend a skill point to be able to use it.
* LifeMeter: Three bars graphically show your remaining [[{{Mana}} magicka]], [[SprintMeter stamina]] and [[HitPoints health]]. Worth noting is that the LifeMeter also shows some of your buffs and debuffs through simple graphical effects: the meter cracks if your resistances are reduced, its borders become thicker if they are buffed, it becomes smaller if [[MaximumHPReduction your maximum health is reduced]], glows white if your attack is increased and black if it's reduced, etc. It also shows if you have any shields, coloring a portion of the bar pink in relation with the strenght of the barrier.
* LinearWarriorsQuadraticWizards: The game has a bad case of this, to the point where magicka builds are the way to go if you want to be competitive in trials or fighting in Cyrodiil, simply because magic builds can push out far more damage far faster and over a larger area than those relying on stamina by endgame.
* LoadingScreen: Plenty of these, containing artwork and a brief bit of information that is usually relevant to where you are. They usually appear when moving into different areas and delves, but they might sometimes suddenly cut your gameplay off if the game can't load the assets of the current area fast enough.
* LockpickingMinigame: You are shown five pins on springs and must press down on each one until the right moment (when it starts to shake slightly), and then release. If you push it down too far, the lockpick will break; if it is not far enough, then it simply will return to its normal position (although repeated attempts may still break the lockpick). It is also has a time limit based on the difficulty of the chest: the more difficult the lock, the less amount of time is given to open it.
* LuckilyMyShieldWillProtectMe: One of the skill types is One-Hand and Shield. Blocking with a shield (as opposed to your own weapon) can absorb more damage and potentially save your life, specially in PvP situations. It's almost a necessity for tanking too, as its skill line contains one of the two ways to DrawAggro in the game.
* {{Mana}}: Magicka, an Elder Scrolls staple.
* MaximumHPReduction: A debuff mostly NPC enemies can inflict. It's called Minor/Major Mangle, and it's just as easy to dispel as any other debuff.
* MeleeATrois: The three playable warring factions in the game consist of the Aldmeri Dominion (Altmer, Bosmer, and Khajit), the Ebonheart Pact (Dunmer, Nords, and Argonians), and the Daggerfall Covenant (Bretons, Redguards, and Orcs).
** As shown in various previews, this will be very common in PvP. Of particular note are sieges where the defenders may be attacked by forces from the other two factions but the two groups may also start attacking each other.
** At a landmark west of Ebonheart, Vivec's Antlers, there are a few sidequests dealing with one based around an invading Covenant force, the defending Pact soldiers, and Dreugh summoned by the artifact the Covenant is attempting to steal. One of the quests has you convincing the Dreugh that the Pact is defending the artifact too, stacking the battle against the Covenant.
* MedievalEuropeanFantasy: The entire game, but the lands and story arcs of the Daggerfall Covenant are like a love letter to the genre.
* MemeticBadass: {{Invoked}}. [[http://uesp.net/wiki/Online:Glories_of_the_Pirate_Queen Captain Fortunata]] is the 2nd-Era Gold Coast equivalent of Chuck Norris.
* MerchantPrince: High King Emeric, leader of the Daggerfall Covenant, was originally a merchant lord from High Rock.
* {{Microtransactions}}: The Crown Store. It offers cosmetic items such as pets, mounts (mounts can be bought in-game, and stats are based on the character, not the mount), and costumes. It also includes items that can be obtained in-game, such as food/drink/potions (which are inferior to player-made ones), mount riding skills, and crafting books. The only non-cosmetic, non-obtainable-in-game items it offers are the Imperial Edition of the game (adds the ability to be the Imperial race, plus has a few items), and the Adventurer Pack (which adds the ability to play any race in any alliance - something previously only available from preordering the game - and also contains a few items).
* MoodWhiplash: There's a merchant on Auridon called Elodinar, who, when spoken to, says mournfully, "My heart goes out to the many victims of this foul tragedy that has befallen Greenwater Cove..." before concluding with a cheerful, "... So! Do you need to buy anything!"
* MyEyesAreUpHere: Lampshaded with the [[http://uesp.net/w/images/0/06/ON-npc-Dark_Seducer.png Seducer Armor set/Disguise]]. The helmet covers the eyes entirely, but it reveals a lot of the rest.
* NeckSnap: Some of the dying animations have an NPC's chin directly over their shoulder bone while they fly in the direction you hit them in. When you're using a mace or an axe, it looks like you hit them in the head with so much blunt force, that you've snapped their neck. The fact that they simply flop over dead really helps this effect.
* NonindicativeName: The Daggerfall Covenant is led by the King of Wayrest, which is its capital, not Daggerfall. Similarly, the leader of the Ebonheart Pact is the King in Windhelm, and the Pact's capital is Mournhold, not Ebonheart.
* NoodleIncident:
** On the Aldmeri Dominion side, Queen Ayrenn and Razum-Dar's backstory seems to be full of these. Often in reference to the time they adventured together.
** Some crafting skill lines have the Hireling passive, which makes you receive letters every day that contain crafting materials. The letters themselves usually recount the hireling's adventures while retrieving your materials, and can sometimes veer into this trope.
-->'''Gavin Gavonne:''' A word of wisdom from one who learned a thing or two in his travels: no matter how much your drunken companion might encourage it, never, under any circumstances, should you moon a werewolf.
* NoSell: Sometimes when you attack an enemy - usually a boss - you'll get a message at the top of the screen saying it's too powerful for a certain effect (such as knockback or poison).
* NostalgiaLevel: Eastmarch in general, to ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim''.
** One particular Ebonheart Pact questline will take players [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim back to Skuldafn where they need to access a portal to Sovngarde.]]
** Most of the playable areas of Tamriel would count since the game is largely an even mix of nostalgia locations and new areas. Stros M'Kai, for example, is one for ''The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard''. A future update will allow players to revisit the [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Clockwork City of Sotha Sil.]]
* NoticeThis: Having the Keen Eye perk on one of the various crafting skill lines will make crafting resources of that type have a noticeable pillar of light effect coming from them, making it easier to spot and harvest them.
* {{Otherkin}}: A Dunmer in Woodhearth. He calls Khajiit his brothers and "true people".
-->'''Vadelen Inodthan:''' I was cruelly born without a tail, without claws, but I know where I belong. If I can just find the right mixture, I can fix that.
* OurWerewolvesAreDifferent:
** In the [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jNT5cMwxw0 Alliance trailer]], one part of it features a trio of Ebonheart warriors fighting a group of ''zombie werewolves''.
* {{Ouroboros}}:
** The game's logo has the three animals which represent the factions forming this sort of circle (lion for the Daggerfall Covenant, dragon for the Ebonheart Pact and eagle for the Aldmeri Dominion). This probably shouldn't be taken as an indication of the faction's [[TacticalRockPaperScissors respective advantages]] over each other.
** In the Alliance trailer, the Nord, Altmer, and Breton leaders (representing Fighter, Mage, and Thief respectively) circle each other in the shape of the Ouroboros.
* PillarOfLight: Skyshards have one above them, and the Keen Eye crafting passive makes it so a similar effect appears on gathering nodes, making them harder to miss. The Templar skill Backlash also makes a pillar of light appear on top of the target.
* PlayerVersusPlayer: Players are able to fight one another in battles for keeps and other such fortifications, with a particularly huge arena being the Imperial City itself, with 100 v 100 battles. This isn't surprising, considering the main creative talent were behind ''VideoGame/DarkAgeOfCamelot''.
* PoisonedWeapons: Alchemists can make several kinds of poisons to use for any sort of weapon. These function like a consumable enchant, being used vial by vial with a 20% chance on every attack. Naturally, FridgeLogic comes into play when one considers that even the shots of a magical staff can be imbued with the same poison a regular sword uses.
** Some weapon and player skills can also involve poison. The Bow line of skills, for example, has three skills that can be morphed into dealing poison damage. One of the wake-up calls one can usually find in Cyrodiil involves the [[MostAnnoyingSound dreadful sound]] of two Lethal Arrows hitting you out of nowhere, followed by the death scream of your character.
* PowerIncontinence: Aranias, a young Altmer woman who can be found in Valenwood, has a connection with nature. You see some of her past: she has remarkable powers, able to raise land and grow vines right out of the ground, but she also isn't able to control it. She destroys an entire ship on accident by raising a rock out of the ocean.
* PromotedFangirl: YouTube singer [[https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCS613EogLXE0lTsxyC1cWLA Malukah]], who did popular covers of [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim's]] Bard Songs, was hired to write music for the bard songs in this game, and appears as the female singing voice of some of them. Her original song, ''Beauty of Dawn'', also plays over the credits.
* ProphetEyes: The, well, Prophet has them.
* RearingHorse: Mounts will perform an animation if you attempt to jump with them while not moving; horses in particular will rear. Also, if you're in combat and take enough hits while on your horse, it will rear, knocking you off.
* {{Retcon}}: In ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsArena'' Cyrodiil was depicted as a tropical rainforest rather than a MedievalEuropeanFantasy-standard grasslands-and-forests region as in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'' and ''Online''. ''Oblivion'' and out-of-game sources justified it with Tiber Septim using CHIM[[note]]Heimskr's speech quotes the pertinent part of the specific out-of-game source and the Mythic Dawn Commentaries part 3 gives the same explanation[[/note]], but ''Online's'' calling it the result of FutureImperfect (a [[MemeticMutation "transcription error"]]), to much derision from lore-minded fans. The game also changes many established elements of the main series both visually and story-wise in order to fit the game's vision.
* RidiculouslyCuteCritter: Formerly in the Crown Store, the Bantam Guar pet is described as such.
--> ''According to the calculations of the sages of the Cult of the Ancestor Moth, the bantam guar is the cutest creature in all Tamriel.''
* RollingAttack: The Hide of Morihaus SetBonus makes your [[UnnecessaryCombatRoll dodge]] deal damage if you roll through an enemy.
* RuleOfThree: Three factions, which mirrors ''VideoGame/DarkAgeOfCamelot'' and its Realm vs. Realm combat.
* RunningGag: The game continues some that have made regular appearances in the ES games: [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=najAPgy0TWQ M'aiq the Liar appears once again]], and you can bake sweetrolls and Fishy Sticks. And yes, The Lusty Argonian Maid also makes its return.
** One running gag has escalated from previous games. Once again, the player character starts as a prisoner. However, the prisoner is essentially killed off in the introduction in order to bring them to Molag Bal's realm of Coldharbor.
* SecretTestOfCharacter: The Trial of the Heart in Hissmir.
* SelfDeprecation: After you complete a quest to drive off a Covenant attack on Ebonheart, a Nord will jest that they can probably make you the [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim thane of Whiterun, considering that they'll make anybody a thane there.]]
* SetBonus: A constant of the games equipment. Regardless of the current patch, the best equipment in the game always offers additional benefits if all parts of its set are worn together. The fact that some of those offer reduced benefits if fewer pieces are equiped, coupled with the fact that you have 10 equipment slots, means that getting the most out of your items involves mixing several sets together.
* ShoutOut:
** An in-game book, [[http://www.uesp.net/wiki/Lore:Song_of_the_Diamond_Sword "Song of the Diamond Sword"]], uses [[Creator/{{Tobuscus}} Tobuscus']] "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eN7dYDYfvVg I Can Swing My Sword]]" essentially word for word.
** There is a [[http://esohead.com/books/651-academy-supplies acceptance letter for a]] WizardingSchool that sounds [[http://harrypotter.wikia.com/wiki/Hogwarts_acceptance_letter suspiciously similar]] to the one that Literature/HarryPotter received...
** One of the ships moored in Daggerfall's harbor is called the [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Lydia]].
** When fighting in an arena in Reaper's March, the PlayerCharacter is given the stage name [[VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic The Mysterious Stranger.]]
* SprintMeter: As a staple of Elder Scrolls games, stamina is used not only to run, but to activate weapon skills, [[UnnecessaryCombatRoll to dodge]], to bash to interrupt casting, to absorb damage through blocking and to break free from crowd control effects. Spending points into stamina also makes your stamina-based attacks stronger.
* TheStarscream: Mannimarco serves Molag Bal, but wants to obtain greater power than the Prince's.
* StatusBuff: A big part of the game. Since the game's launch, a good part of the available skills could buff the player in a myriad ways, though most weren't obvious in some technical aspects (such as what could stack with what instead of being overwritten). A few patches later the buff system was revamped, standarizing most of them with adequate names and inserting them in some unpopular skills to make them more useful, which further emphasized their importance in the system. In terms of their overall usefulness, suffice to say that a clueless player will often put several of their preferred role's most obvious skills on the skill bar and then use two or three, wondering why the game's enemies take too long to kill; a good player will have a mixture of skills to deal damage, mitigate and buff, constantly cycling through them and keeping them up to make the most out of their ten slots.
* ThisLooksLikeAJobForAquaman: It is surprising how often having no soul can be useful in quests.
* TheReveal: [[spoiler: The Prophet turns out to be the previous Emperor who got Tamriel into this whole mess.]]
* ToHellAndBack: [[http://www.elderscrollsonline.com/en/media/videos/563 Coldharbor]] is the starting location and tutorial. Once one character has done it, it can be skipped.
* TooAwesomeToUse: The Grand Amnesty Edict, awarded once per character by quest, can remove 100,000 gold of bounty on use. But since it can't be traded, transferred to other characters or stored in any way, many players either have it taking up backpack space forever or find themselves trying to get all the illegal achievements at once before using it.
** Bind On Equip items can sometimes have this effect if they're rare enough to garner large sums of gold on the [[PlayergeneratedEconomy guild trader market]]. Use one just once to test it, and it's yours forever.
* TwentyBearAsses: Averted for the most part, with most of the quests either being a FetchQuest, a PlotCoupon delivery quest, or taking down a boss.
* UnusualEuphemism: Bretons are fond of this. In particular there are a women and a man talking about "seeing his collection of antique riding crops, *wink* *wink*"
* VestigialEmpire: The Akaviri Potentate is weakened following various wars, leaving Cyrodiil in a state of chaos.
* WarIsHell: Various raids by enemy forces result in the destruction of farms and villages, the deaths of families, and, if the attackers aren't careful, the releasing of curses and other monstrosities that the Soulless One then has to clean up.
* WarriorPoet: Jorunn the Skald-King, the High-King of Skyrim and one of the leaders of the Ebonheart Pact.
** Vivec, one of the Dunmer's [[PhysicalGod living gods]], is also said, in-universe, to be this.
* WeAreStrugglingTogether: Various warring races have had to come together in order to form the three different Alliances. This is best illustrated in a piece of lore on the game's website, with a note found on the body of a Dunmer slaver. Though apparently the enslavement of Argonians has been made illegal by the Ebonheart Pact, Dunmer keep attempting to find their way around the law in order to continue the trade.
* WideOpenSandbox: The game world is said to be even larger than that of ''Skyrim's'' and consists of most of Tamriel, though not all will be available at the start.
* WhiteStallion: The Imperial Horse, which comes with the Imperial Edition of the game. Presumably had the "rarity" part of the trope in mind, but ironically was one of the most commonly owned mounts out there until the cash shop introduced more variety in mounts.
* WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds: Lamae Bal, the original Daughter of Coldharbour, qualifies. [[spoiler:She's still alive, and is leading a FaustianRebellion against Molag Bal with the intent of turning the Cyrodiilic Bloodline of vampires against him.]]
* WorldOfBadass
* YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness: Happens to an Altmer in Woodhearth. She plays her part in the Veiled Heritance's plans, and after she's done, she's rewarded with a blade to the gut.
* YourSoulIsMine: A Type 1 example done by Molag Bal on the player. It also serves to justify being able to come back to life repeatedly.
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