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This page lists the sapient races/species/creatures of Nirn that are neither Men or Mer. For an index of all races, see here.

Note: Elder Scrolls lore is generally not clear-cut. Reasons for this range from biased in-universe sources intentionally only giving you only one side of a story, to sources lacking critical information or working from false information, to the implication that All Myths Are True, despite the contradictions, or that at least all myths are Metaphorically True. Out-of-game developer supplemental texts (frequently referred to as "Obscure Texts" by the lore community) are more trustworthy, but are frequently left unofficial and sometimes later contradicted. Because of this, it is entirely possible for two contradictory statements in the below examples to both be true. (And due to frequent events in-universe that alter the timeline, both may literally be true in-universe.)

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Other Tamrielic Races

    Deep Ones 
"Given to me by the Chief of the Deep Ones. He taught me his language and his runes. This is the ancient lore of his people which we shall follow from now until forever."
Bible of the Deep Ones

An enigmatic race of beings that were found in the mining tunnels under the Cyrodiilic town of Hackdirt, who promised the citizens of the town great wealth... in exchange for blood and worse. While the mysterious Deep ones brought great wealth to the town, they also became the focus on Hackdirt's religion, and their worship brought madness, violence, and instability, causing many murders of travelers and outsiders to sate the Deep Ones' appetite for blood. The Empire ultimately razed the town to the ground, causing the Deep Ones to vanish and leaving only a few survivors to continue their worship.


  • Black Speech: The Bible of the Deep Ones is written in Daedric runes, which, when translated, turns out to be the Sload language. (This in turn translates into Esperanto, which when translated becomes the same text as "N'Gasta! Kvata! Kvakis!" — an Easter Egg newsletter.)
  • Body Horror: Those who moved into the mine sunder Hackdirt to become "closer" were transformed into beings called "the Bretheren", with distorted and bulging eyes and hostile to anyone from outside the town.
  • Cult: All of Hackdirt has become one dedicated to worshipping the Deep Ones, and gather in the village's chapel every night to worship them.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Whatever the Deep Ones are, they are terrifying and powerful, demanding blood sacrifice, and mutating the population of Hackdirt through their mere presence.
  • Human Sacrifice: The Deep Ones demand blood from their followers in exchange for their gifts. The current leaders believe another blood sacrifice will bring the Deep Ones back, and the Champion ends up rescuing their latest planned victim.
  • The Unfought: The Deep Ones are never seen, and apparently never even tried to defend Hackdirt when the Empire burned the town down. In the mines the player can find a blocked-off tunnel with something large and angry growling on the other side, but this is as close as the game gets to letting you find whatever the Deep Ones were.
  • Whole Plot Reference: The entire plotline surrounding them is a reference to The Shadow Over Innsmouth, complete with the same name for the creatures inhabiting the town, the transforming citizens, and the cult planning human sacrifice. The quest is even titled "Shadow Over Hackdirt".

    Dragons 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/firedragon.png
A fire dragon

"There is no credible story of how dragons came to be. According to dremora that the College of Whispers have "questioned", they just were, and are. Eternal, immortal, unchanging, and unyielding. They are not born or hatched. They do not mate or breed."
There Be Dragons

Dragons, or "Dov" (singular "Dovah") in their language, are massive reptilian beasts with bat-like wings and slender extremities, generally tipped by razor sharp talons. Dragons are highly intelligent and possess an inherent affinity for magic, best evidenced by their mastery over the "Thu'um", the ability to channel magical energy through words. Sources conflict over the terrestrial origin of dragons, with some claiming that dragons hail from Akavir while others state it was Atmora. Dragons feel an innate urge to dominate others and generally lead solitary lives in remote, mountainous areas.

Dragons are Aedric entities, with divine immortal souls, who are said to be the children of Akatosh, the draconic god of Time and one of the Divines. Anyone of sufficient ability is capable of slaying the mortal form of a dragon, but only another dragon (or Dragonborn) can truly kill one by absorbing its soul. After first coming to Tamriel, dragons dominated early mankind. Eventually, after discovering a means to use the Thu'um against them, humankind overthrew the dragons and sent them on a path of significant decline. Following the Akaviri invasion of the late 1st Era, dragons were nearly rendered extinct with a few going into hiding in the most remote areas of Tamriel. In the 4th Era, Alduin, "first born" of Akatosh, returned after being cast adrift in time during the ancient Dragon Wars. Alduin began resurrecting dragons whose soul had not been absorbed, leading to the species' return.

For more information regarding Alduin and Akatosh specifically, see the series' "Divine Beings" character sub-page.


  • Abusive Precursors: The dragons and their Dragon Cults were this very early in Tamriellic history. Essentially a Religion of Evil with mortal Dragon Priests brutally ruling over early mankind in the name of their dragon overlords. Eventually, mankind prayed to the Divines for aid and their prayers were answered when they were taught how to use the Thu'um themselves, for use against the dragons.
  • The Ageless: Though their physical forms still experience wear and tear (as can be seen with Paarthurnax), they never truly age, and in most cases, get Stronger with Age.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Within each Dragon is the desire to dominate and destroy others. While individual dragons are able to overcome this nature with significant effort, even they admit that it is possible for them to slip back into it.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Dragons range in color from whitish-gray, through many hues of blue, red, green, gold, etc., to the pure black of Alduin himself.
  • Ambiguously Evil: While the innate desire to dominate leads to dragons being considered uniformly evil to most mortals, individual dragons can play with it in various ways. During the ancient Dragon Wars, most dragons were simply following the lead of their leader, Alduin. In modern times, some dragons have shown the ability to suppress their dominating nature and have even been able to work with mortals, while many others simply prefer to be left alone.
  • Arch-Enemy: Considering their inherently violent nature, the dragons made quite a few of them.
    • The Tsaesci of Akavir consider the dragons to be their mortal enemies. In fact, their entire invasion of Tamriel in the First Era was at least partially due to a desire to hunt down dragons who lived there, and they only stopped their invasion when the met Reman Cyrodiil, who was a Dragonborn. The Akaviri would be reformed into the Dragonguard, who would pull double duty as both the bodyguards of the Imperial Dragonborn bloodline and continued to act as dragon hunters.
    • Dragonborn in general are considered an archnemesis as well, because they are natural dragon hunters who possess the same soul as a dragon and thus the same sort of violence, ambition, and will to dominate. Dragons who encounter a Dragonborn will treat them as any other of their kin, and such encounters rarely end peacefully.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: Dragons strongly believe this. If there's a question of pecking order, a fight ensues until one dragon either wins, submits, or dies. For dragons, there is no difference between being powerful and being right.
  • Call a Pegasus a "Hippogriff": Downplayed. While they appear closer in shape to Wyverns (forelimbs that are also wings) than more standard European-style dragons (four legs with wings as additional appendages). This case rather defensible, as no clear distinction was even made between the two creatures throughout much of European history. Downplayed because, other than this one physical difference, they fit many other traditional notions of dragons (including possessing human-like intelligence while traditional wyverns do not).
  • Calling Your Attacks: Justified, as dragons use the Thu'um to do things like command elements into existence. By shouting the words for say, breathing fire, they literally command fire into existence.
  • Breath Weapon: Subverted. While it might look like they have the ability to breathe fire and ice, they're actually using Thu'um to conjure fire, ice, and other elements into existence.
  • Brown Note: The "Dragonrend" Thu'um shout temporarily cripples dragons by forcing them to experience mortality, being finite, and being temporary. These concepts are utterly alien to the immortal and ageless dragons. It is notably the only Thu'um shout to be developed by mortals.
  • Conlang: Dragons feature their own distinct language and alphabet, and both are wrapped up tightly with the Thu'um, to the point that their language is an intrinsic part of their being and speaking their language with the Thu'um changes reality. Their alphabet, appropriately, resembles the ancient real-world scripts of Bronze Age societies, with many letters involving slash marks indicative of being dug into clay or stone with their claws.
  • The Corruption: Molag Bal, Daedric Prince of Domination and Corruption, created the Daedric Titans by corrupting dragons. Titans possess similar anatomical features and abilities as dragons, but were created in mockery of true dragons and serve the Daedric Princes.
  • Creature-Hunter Organization: The Blades got their start based off of the Akaviri Dragonguard, hunting and slaying dragons in service to a Dragonborn leader. With the presumed extinction of the dragons, their role shifted to become spies and bodyguards for the emperors of Tamriel. In the 4th Era, the Blades reformed and returned to their original dragon-hunting roots along with the return of the dragons.
  • Deader Than Dead: To permanently kill a dragon, you must first slay its physical form and then absorb its soul. While anyone of sufficient ability can do the former, only another dragon (or a Dragonborn) is capable of the latter. Failure to absorb a dragon's soul leaves open the possibility of it being resurrected in the future.
  • Death Is Cheap: If a Dragon is killed by a mortal, it is entirely possible for another dragon to resurrect it at a later point. The only way to permanently kill a dragon is to absorb its soul. Akatosh created the Dragonborn to serve as natural predators for the dragons.
  • Death of a Thousand Cuts: Historically, Dragons never had much of a presence in Morrowind. Why? Because they were driven away by Cliff Racerssmall, weak, and hideously annoying native creatures — through sheer numbers and persistence. In the 4th Era, after Cliff Racers had been driven away and after Red Mountain's eruption, a surviving dragon finally came to lair in the smoking ruins of Vvardenfell.
  • Draconic Abomination: Dragons are ancient, having "always been", and possess immortal, divine souls. They cannot be truly killed unless that soul is absorbed by another and, by using their magical language, they can cause small scale reality warping.
  • Dragon Hoard: While not to the same extent as in other works, dragon lairs generally do have treasure chests and piles in or near their lairs. On a meta level, this serves as a good explanation for why the player character collects so much stuff over the course of their journey; since Dragonborn have the souls of dragons, they also possess the same natural instincts as dragons, including the urge to hoard stuff.
  • Dragons Are Demonic: Dragons are creatures of aggression and domination, and it's in their blood to be cruel and contemptuous. Even the protagonist of Skyrim, the Last Dragonborn, is a mortal with a dragon's soul and is no exception. However, they can fight against their baser nature, as best exemplified by Paarthurnax.
  • Dragons Are Divine: Crossing over with Our Angels Are Different. Dragons, who descend from Akatosh, are a form of lesser Aedric spirits and are therefore, by default, divine entities. This isn't really a contradiction with Dragons Are Demonic, either, as Aedra and Daedra are generally believed to be descended from the same entities, and many of the darker qualities of dragons are also expressed in certain harsher and more brutal aspects of the Divines.
  • Fatal Flaw: Pride. This flaw is often literally fatal, because a dragon who is challenged must accept, and to not do so is to call into question whether you're a true dragon in the first place.
  • Guttural Growler: Dragons have extremely deep, booming voices.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Some dragons are known to have been capable of suppressing their desire to dominate and have allied themselves with mortals, such as Nafaalilargus and Paarthurnax.
  • Honor Before Reason: Dragons have a strong sense of honor which influences the actions they take. For example, when in a fight and faced with overwhelming odds, a dragon is expected to either Face Death with Dignity or submit to the opponent and become their servant, and will almost never consider retreat.
  • The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: When they attack one who is Dragonborn.
  • Hunter of His Own Kind: Dragons consider those who are Dragonborn to be this, as they both possess immortal Aedric souls.
  • I Fight for the Strongest Side: A staple of Dragon culture, going hand in hand with their beliefs that Asskicking Equals Authority and their tendency toward Honor Before Reason.
  • I Know Your True Name: Downplayed. Shouting a dragon's true name does not place it under your control, but the dragon will treat it as a challenge and will usually seek out whoever made the shout, due to a combination of curiosity and honor.
  • Immortals Fear Death: The concept of mortality is so alien to dragons that it can be weaponized against them by the "Dragonrend" shout (Joor Zah Frul, which translates to Mortal, Finite, Temporary), robbing them of their ability to fly and speak Thu'um for a short time.
  • Language Equals Thought: In the Draconic language, no distinction is made between "debating" and "fighting" — two dragons breathing fire at each other are just having a particularly heated argument. Furthermore, dragons' thoughts when voiced are able to alter reality, so when they Shout, they are not merely casting a spell, but willing fire into existence with a word. Language equals Thought Equals Being, in other words.
  • Luke Nounverber: Their names, when translated from Draconic, have a similar effect. "Curse Never Dying" and "Snow Wing Hunter", for example. Crosses over with Awesome Mc Coolname as the translated names sound quite intimidating.
  • Make Me Wanna Shout: Combined with Language of Magic and Words Can Break My Bones. All dragons can inherently use the Thu'um, speaking words (in their deep and booming voices) which cause small scale reality warping around them, such as commanding elements like fire and frost into existence.
  • Might Makes Right: In the draconic way of thinking, being right and being powerful are one and the same.
  • Monster Progenitor: Dragons are said to be the children of Akatosh, and in some sources, they are said to be "fragments" of his very being.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: Language is so intrinsic to the Dragons that a fight between two Dov... is actually a deadly verbal debate.
  • Non-Indicative Name: The "Dragonlings" of the Iliac Bay region are unrelated to true dragons, lacking intelligence and magical ability.
  • No True Scotsman:
  • Not So Different: Dragons and the Dragonborn. Both are driven by the same urges to dominate, kill, and destroy. (On a meta level, this comparison applies to many video gamers.)
  • Not So Extinct: Subverted and Averted in different senses:
    • Subverted in that, while it was commonly believed in Tamriel that the dragons had been rendered extinct in the late 1st Era by the Akaviri Dragonguard and the Blades, many dragons still survived. Nafaalilargus was spared as a known ally of mortals and would later serve Tiber Septim as a secret weapon. Paarthurnax continued to live atop the Throat of the World, serving as the master of the Greybeards, though his case is likely excused because his existence was kept secret to all outside of the Greybeards. Others managed to survive in remote wilderness areas (such as the Forgotten Vale) or deep beneath the earth (such as in the Dwemer city of Blackreach).
    • Averted in that the vast majority of dragons were actually killed, and the ones who appear in the 4th Era are being resurrected. These dragons were dead (but not truly killed), and are now being brought back to life.
  • One-Gender Race: Dragons are not known to have sexes nor reproduce. All known dragons have spoken with male voices, however. There are hints in the more obscure lore of a female dragon-like beings known as "jills" who maintain time's linear passage, but their relation to the dragons on Nirn is unclear.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: While still taking the general form of large reptilian, carnivorous beasts with wings and scales, dragons are actually divine Aedric entities either descended from, or are part of, Akatosh. Ageless and able to be resurrected unless their soul is absorbed, their magical language is intrinsic to their very beings and allows them warp reality on a small scale.
  • Pieces of God: One prominent theory states that the souls of all dragons (Alduin and the Dragonborn included) are fragments of the soul of Akatosh, the Aedric God of Time whose typical form in mythology is a dragon. When the Dragonborn (or any other dragon) absorbs the soul of another, it's actually fragments of the Akatosh over-soul recombining.
  • Poirot Speak: Dragons frequently slip back into draconic when speaking in Tamriellic.
  • Pride: To say dragons are a proud species is a colossal understatement. They refuse to back down from challenges of any kind, especially from another dovah. In one case, a dragon named Boziikkodstrun was captured by Molag Bal and tortured for the secrets of the Thu'um. He resisted the torture through sheer unrelenting pride, to the point that even Molag Bal himself gave up and just rent it down to its bones and then made Daedric Titans in their image as a way to spite the dragons.
  • Proud Warrior Race: The immense pride of dragons is obvious, but they are also ferocious warriors. Their way of greeting is to Shout fire upon one another, and when a dragon challenges another in the Thu'um, they must accept or be branded a worthless coward. While a dragon may submit to a superior dragon with a stronger Voice, fleeing without dying or surrendering calls into question whether they are even a true dragon. Combat is so essential to the dragons' very existence that they make no distinction between fighting and debate, which makes sense, as their arguments can literally alter reality.
  • Reality Warper: Using the Thu'um, dragons can command elements into existence, essentially warping reality around them on a small scale.
  • Resurrective Immortality: Even if a dragon's physical form is slain, it can never truly die unless its soul is absorbed by another dragon or Dragonborn. This allows them to be resurrected by other dragons.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Combined with Rise from Your Grave. Dragons who are slain but whose souls are not absorbed by another dragon (or Dragonborn) can be resurrected by another dragon. Cue dragons returning to life by rising from their graves.
  • Soul Eating: Dragons and those with draconic souls can consume other dragon souls to a) boost their own souls' power and b) destroy the other soul permanently (the only way to destroy the otherwise immortal dragons).
  • Spikes of Villainy: All dragons have naturally spiky appearances, some more so than others.
  • Stripped to the Bone: When a slain dragon's soul is absorbed by a Dragonborn, the flesh burns away, leaving only the skeleton.
  • Takes One to Kill One: While anyone of sufficient ability can slay the physical form of a dragon, permanently killing the dragon requires another dragon or Dragonborn absorbing its soul so that it cannot be resurrected.
  • Time Abyss: There is no definitive answer regarding the origin of dragons other than that they come from Akatosh. A Dremora upon being questioned simply answered that dragons "just were, and are", with no definitive beginning. The very concepts of mortality, being finite, and being temporary are so alien to dragons that these words, in draconic, were used against them in a mortal-creatured Thu'um shout which temporarily cripples dragons.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: The Dragon Cult originated in Atmora, homeland of the Atmorans (ancient proto-Nords). There, the men worshiped the Dragons, and the priests demanded tribute, as well as set down laws so dragons and men could live together peacefully. When the dragons and their Cult moved to Tamriel, they were not nearly as benevolent, ruling men with an iron fist and eventually enslaving them. No one really knows why the Cult changed, though it is implied that was the result of Alduin's desire to rule the world instead of end it.
  • A Wizard Did It: Explained in-universe. How are they able to fly in spite of their bulk and non-aerodynamic shape? How are they able to speak despite not having lips? Magic. To be more specific, they have a natural affinity for magic which allows for this.
  • Worthy Opponent:
    • As a Proud Warrior Race, the dragons consider anyone able to put up a good fight to be one of these, and delight in an honorable battle with mortals and other dov. Their pride and joy in battle is such that they will rarely ever retreat from a worthy fight, even at the risk of their own death.
    • The Daedra, in particular Molag Bal and the Daedra of Coldharbour, consider the dragons to be akin to them in terms of majesty, power, and will to dominate and control. Molag Bal even offered one dragon, Boziikkodstrun, a "place of honor" within Coldharbour because of his determination to fly outside the bounds of the universe and reach Aetherius. Of course, this was Molag Bal, so the place of honor he offered was a prison where said dragon was tortured for ages in an effort to wring the secrets of the Thu'um.
  • Your Soul Is Mine: Dragons can absorb the souls of other dragons they have defeated. This is also the key ability for those mortals who are Dragonborn, being able to permanently kill dragons by slaying them and absorbing their souls. The Dragonborn were created by Akatosh for the very purpose of serving as natural predators to the dragons.

    Ehlnofey 
When Magic (Magnus), architect of the plans for the mortal world, decided to terminate the project, the Gods convened at the Adamantine Tower [Direnni Tower, the oldest known structure in Tamriel] and decided what to do. Most left when Magic did. Others sacrificed themselves into other forms so that they might Stay (the Ehlnofey).
Before the Ages of Man

The common progenitor race of Men and Mer, descended from the et'Ada. It is believed Nirn is an amalgamation of the "Twelve Worlds of Creation", destroyed by Padomay in a fit of jealous rage before the pieces were assembled by Anu to create Nirn. A large chunk of one world, the Ehlnofey world, was left relatively intact.note  When Magnus and the Magna-Ge fled during the creation of Mundus, the Ehlnofey decided to remain and worked to keep it viable. Thus, they remained in the mortal realm and populated it by "making children".

The Ehlnofey who lived in the chunk of their old world were the ancestors of the Mer, and their solidarity allowed them to retain more of their ancient knowledge and power. The other Ehlnofey, who were left scattered around Nirn, had a harder time adapting, and were dubbed the "Wanderers" (ancestors of the Men). For whatever reason, war eventually broke out between Old Ehlnofey and the Wanderers. The former were more powerful individually, but the latter were more numerous, and had been toughened by the hardships of Nirn. It is believed this war reshaped the face of Nirn, creating the first oceans, and what was left of Old Ehlnofey purportedly became Tamriel.


  • Can't Argue with Elves: They had this problem before elves even existed as we know them; when the Wandering Ehlnofey discovered the hidden land of the Old Ehlnofey, they were treated as degenerates and fallen due to having been forced to wander Nirn. This conflict sparked a war across all of Nirn that sank several landmasses and left the current ones we know of in their shapes (Tamriel, Akavir, Yokuda, Atmora, and Pyandonea).
  • Capital Letters Are Magic: Their language, Ehlnofex, is stylistically written in all caps, as can be seen with certain words such as CHIM or AHK. The Dunmer Tribunal also used this stylizing when they referred to themselves as ALMSIVI.
  • Dem Bones: A few Ehlnofey managed to survive at least into the Second Era during the time of The Elder Scrolls Online, and by that time they came to be spirits possessing various skeletal forms (a Bosmer skeleton and a dragon skull, for example). Another term for them is also the "Earth-Bones", used to describe the et'Ada/Ehlnofey that sacrificed themselves to become the laws of physics that govern Nirn.
  • Great Offscreen War: The conflict between the Old and Wandering Ehlnofey destroyed several landmasses, consumed all of Nirn, and set the stage for the perceptions and prejudices that would define the races of Man and Mer going into the Fourth Era and possibly beyond.
  • Invading Refugees: The way the Old Ehlnofey saw their wandering brethren when they found their hidden landmass.
  • Order vs. Chaos: The conflict between the Old Ehlnofey and the Wandering Ehlnofey boils down to this, and is still seen in their descendants (the races of Mer and Man, respectively). A large section of the original Ehlnofey world landed on Nirn during its creation, and the Ehlnofey there warded their continent from the chaos of Nirn's creation and created a pocket of calm. The Wandering Ehlnofey came to Nirn later in scattered bands and found each other over time, being constantly exposed to harsh environments and the chaos of the Dawn Era.
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    Giants 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/on_concept_giant.png

"Oh mighty tundrastrider!
How you and your mighty tusked beast silhouette against the great orange expanse.
Thundering footsteps herald your herd. Man and beast blazing trail together.
One in nature, each relying upon the other, more than just man and beast, but equals who need one another to survive.
How I long to run across the tundra in their mighty wake."
Ode to the Tundrastriders

The Giants are a massive humanoid race primarily found in Skyrim and High Rock, though they can be found less commonly in the mountainous wilderness areas of Hammerfell, Cyrodiil, and Valenwood as well. Giants possess moderate intelligence, being capable of fashioning simple tools, clothing, and weapons. They are able to harness fire and are known to herd mammoths. Most Giants are nomadic, living solitary lives (or in small groups at most) as they travel from campsite to campsite, though some groups of giants are known to unite in clans which can number in the hundreds. Female Giants and children are rarely seen by outsiders. It is said that Giants can interbreed with the other races of Tamriel.

There are said to be many different variations of Giants in Tamriel, though some are believed to be extinct. Typical Giants are 11-12 feet tall, but there are reports of Giants who are several times the size of an average man. There are also rare "Frost Giants" in Skyrim and Solstheim who are roughly the same size as a standard Giant, but are covered in white fur, have five eyes, and have two long, curved horns on their heads. Likewise, the Ilyadi were said to be "multi-eyed" Giants native to the forests of the Summerset Isle, but were driven to extinction by the ancient Aldmer when they settled the land. There was also a race of Giants native to Elsweyr, who were said to have built the Halls of Colossus, but who disappeared sometime prior to the 3rd Era.


  • Amazing Technicolor Population: They have gray skin.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: While standard Giants typically stand 11-12 feet tall, legends hold of Giants reaching epic proportions, standing "several times the size" of an average man.
  • The Beastmaster: Their relationship with the mammoths they herd is said to be along these lines. They can reportedly communicate with the mammoths, and the relationship is symbiotic and based in mutual respect. In exchange for the protection of the Giants, mammoths allow the Giants to milk them and produce cheese. There have been reports of Giants eating mammoths, but this is always "conducted with reverence" and presumably only done to mammoths who have died of natural causes or following a Mercy Kill.
  • Carry a Big Stick: Massive clubs are a favored weapon of the Giants. Some have a large rock tied to the end, turning them into primitive warhammers. Others have spikes of stone or bone, turning them into primitive battleaxes.
  • Conlang: They have a very simple one known as "Giantish". To an outsider, it sounds like an incomprehensible string of grunts and roars. However, it can be learned by non-Giants, and Giants tend to have greater respect and reduced hostility toward Giantish speakers. Giants are not known to have any written language, though they will carve/paint symbols with some sort of meaning into their own bodies, the tusks of their mammoths, and around their campsites.
  • Covered with Scars: Most Giants have decorative scars carved into their bodies.
  • Decapitated Army: Giants who organize into clans are typically led by a high chieftain with "absolute" authority. In times of war, the high chieftain will rally an army of Giants for organized attacks. If the chieftain is killed, however, the clan tends to fall quickly into disarray.
  • Domesticated Dinosaurs: The Giants of Skyrim herd woolly mammoths, which they milk to create cheese.
  • Due to the Dead: When a Giants feel they are nearing the end of their lives, they will travel to one of their burial grounds to die. If a Giant dies elsewhere, other Giants will carry the body to one of these burial grounds.
  • Fantastic Drug: A fungus known only to grow in the armpits of Giants is a powerful narcotic.
  • Gentle Giant: Most Giants, especially those in Skyrim, keep to themselves and don't interact much with the other races. As long as they are not provoked (by attacking them directly, attacking their mammoth herds, or by entering their camps) they generally will not attack.
  • Guttural Growler: Giants speak like this. When speaking in their own language, it is said to sound like an incomprehensible string of grunts and roars. Some Giants have learned some basic Tamriellic, however, though they still speak it in a very deep and gravelly voice.
  • Holy Ground: Giants have sites set aside strictly as the final resting place for their dead. They typically do not live near these locations and do not guard them.
  • The Horde: The ancient Giant Clan led by Sinmur the Terrible. Sinmur led an army of hundreds of Giants against the forces of the Atmoran Ysgramor and his 500 Companions. Both sides suffered massive casualties, but the war ended when Ysgramor personally slew Sinmur.
  • Horned Humanoid: The rare Frost Giants of Skyrim and Solstheim have two large, curved horns protruding from their heads. Also, the giants of Skyrim usually have small horns in their foreheads, similar to the Orsimer (Orcs).
  • Hot Skitty-on-Wailord Action: There are reports of Giants interbreeding and producing offspring with the other races of Tamriel, particularly Nords, of whom even the largest are at most half the size of an average Giant.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: There are reports of Giants eating members of the sapient races. Other sources dispute these reports, with one expert claiming to have "never seen a giant eat a Nord".
  • Incredible Shrinking Man: According to Nordic myth, drinking a Giant's blood is said to result in "diminution".
  • Megaton Punch: In Skyrim, due to how damage is handled, if a giant hits a human-sized opponent with an overhead swing and the impact is enough to kill or incapacitate them, they will be launched into the sky. This became canon in Online, with a book mentioning an elf who tried to steal from a giant camp ended up getting smacked for over a league before he crashed back down to the surface.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: There are many conflicting theories regarding the origins of Giants:
    • One of the most popular, especially among the Nords, is that they share an ancestry with the ancient Atmorans. The Atmorans were known to be tall, strong, and somewhat primitive. According to this theory, after coming to Tamriel from the northern continent of Atmora, the Atmorans split into two groups, one that would interbreed with Tamriel's Nedes to become the modern Nords and another that would, through unknown means, become the progenitors of the Giants.
    • Other sources, however, make it clear that Giants existed in Tamriel before the Atmorans crossed the sea. The Dwemer were said to have gotten the nickname "Dwarves" from Giants they encountered in the Velothi Mountains after splitting off from the Aldmer, which occurred well before the Atmoran migration. The Aldmer themselves drove a "multi-eyed" race of Giants known as the Ilyadi to extinction when they first settled the Summerset Isles, which was even earlier. Standard Giants also have pointed, tapered ears like those of the Mer (Elves).
    • It is said that the giants in pre-Return Skyrim were far more intelligent and sophisticated compared with the current giants, and that they were in the same situation as the Falmer at the time when Ysgramor returned: being driven to extinction by the invading Nords. One theory is that they became more savage when they were driven into the Velothi Mountains, and another is that they may have been transformed by the Dwemer much like the Falmer were in return for being protected from extinction. The fact that the giants have white souls, much like the Falmer, and giants can occasionally be encountered in Blackreach, is often used to support this theory.
  • Noble Savage: Giants are a moderately intelligent and nomadic race, viewed as primitive by the other races of Tamriel. However, they tend to mammoth herds, generally do not attack others unless provoked, are capable of learning some basic Tamriellic, and will carry deceased Giants to sacred burial grounds.
  • Off Screen Villainy: Giants are known to raid farms, steal livestock, and attack settlements. However, this happens rarely in-game, excepting one instance where they begin raiding an Orc stronghold where the local chieftain had fallen out of favor with Malacath and his cowardice allowed the local shrine to Malacath to be taken over and defiled by the Giants. There is also a chance that a player's home in Skyrim will be raided by a giant who will attack their livestock.
  • One-Gender Race: Subverted in that there are female Giants, but they are very rarely ever seen by outsiders, leading many to believe this is the case for the Giants.
  • Organ Drops: A number of Giant body parts are highly valued for their alchemical properties, including toes, teeth, and thumbs.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: They stand about 11-12 feet tall on average, though there are reports of Giants who get much bigger. They also herd mammoths, tattoo/scarify their skin, paint rocks with primitive symbols, and generally do not attack the other races unless provoked.
  • Pelts of the Barbarian: Most of their clothing is made up of pelts and fur, though few wear more than a simple loin cloth.
  • Pointed Ears: Giants have pointed, tapered ears like those of the Races of Mer (Elves).
  • Playing with Fire: Humanoid remains tied to spits over their campfires can be found at some of their campsites. It is unclear if this is simply a method of executing intruders or if this is part of their meal preparation.
  • Skeletons in the Coat Closet: While most Giants wear simple loincloths made of pelt or fur, there have been cases of Giants assembling armor. It is most commonly made of bones.

    Goblins 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/goblin_2.png

"Miserable, horrid creatures. They're vile and vicious... some are mindless animals; others have learned the ways of magic."
Fedris Hler

Goblins are a primitive and violent humanoid race found across Tamriel and Akavir. Goblins were already present in Tamriel when the ancient Aldmeri first arrived. They have a primitive language and tribal social structure, and worship a god known as "Muluk", who is theorized to be Malacath. Depending on the tribe, they may be led by a Warlord (also known as Warchiefs, typically the biggest and strongest Goblin in the tribe) or by a magic-using shaman (who can be male or female). They frequently come into conflict with any other races they cross paths with, though have been known to live peacefully with the Orcs. They are also frequently enslaved by other races to serve as labor.

There are numerous varieties of Goblin, with some regional differences. On average, they stand 3-5 feet tall, though historically, a race of giant Goblins native to the Alik'r Desert in Hammerfell stood over 8 feet tall. They typically have green-skin, yellow eyes with slitted pupils, a hunched-over posture which sometimes includes a full blown hunchback, pointed ears, and fangs.


  • Always Chaotic Evil: Subverted. While they are indeed very war-like and frequently come into conflict with any other intelligent races they cross paths with, their interactions with Orcs and the researcher in Sacred Rites of the Stonechewers show they can see other species as something besides an opportunity to pillage.
  • Beast of Battle: Goblins have been known to use a number of Tamriel's vicious wildlife species in this role. For example, the Shadowsilk tribe managed to tame giant spiders while other Goblins tribes have done this with giant rats and Durzogs.
  • Blade on a Stick: Spears are a favored weapon of many Goblin tribes.
  • Decapitated Army: Killing the Warlord or shaman of a Goblin tribe will typically cause the rest to crumble. Crossing over with Keystone Army, this sometimes causes the other tribe members to stop attacking altogether.
  • Domesticated Dinosaurs: They train Durzogs, a sort of reptilian dog, for combat and protection.
  • Fan Disservice: Female Goblins tend to show a lot of skin, including veiny green cleavage.
  • Giant Mook: Giant Goblins, standing over 8 feet tall, inhabited the Alik'r Desert in Hammerfell before the Redguards came to the area and drove them to extinction.
  • Heavily Armored Mook: Some Goblins have been known to cobble together heavier armors (or scavenge them), making them into greater threats.
  • Luke Nounverber: Their tribe names are frequently in this format. Examples include the Throatcutter, Dogeater, and Rock Biter tribes. Others have an "adjective-noun" format instead, such as the Bitterfish and Bloody Hand tribes.
  • Mooks: They are frequently in conflict with the other races throughout Tamriel.
  • Our Goblins Are Different: Pretty much follow the standard fantasy version to a "T".
  • Pointed Ears: Goblins have pointed, tapered ears similar to the races of Mer.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: The Goblins in Legends have glowing red eyes and are just as antagonistic as the rest of their kind.
  • Reduced to Ratburgers: They are known to farm Tamriel's Rodents of Unusual Size as a food source. One tribe in High Rock even had the name "Ratfarmer Tribe".
  • Scavenged Punk: Goblins have been known to salvage weapons, armor, and other items created by the other races for their own use.
  • Slave Mook: Various cultures in Tamriel have enslaved Goblins from time to time throughout history. The Tsaesci of Akavir reportedly brought goblins along during their invasion of Tamriel as servants and Cannon Fodder. The Altmer have similarly employed Goblins in this fashion at different points in history.
  • You No Take Candle: Those that do speak words in Tamriellic tend to do so in this fashion.
  • Zerg Rush: Most Goblins are not adept fighters on their own, but make up for it by attacking in groups.

    Hagravens 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hagraven.jpg

"The claws of a hagraven are best obtained in shops; it is inadvisable to suggest one collects them oneself. These creatures have traded in their humanity for access to powerful magics, and the transformations they undergo infuse their entire beings with some element of that power."
Herbalist's Guide to Skyrim

Hagravens are bird-like humanoids known for being powerful witches. Formerly mortal women, Hagravens have traded in their humanity for access to powerful magic. They possess (usually black) feathers, beak-like noses, and talons on their hands and feet. They have been known to ally themselves with the Reachmen, who revere the Hagravens as matrons and matriarchs. They are feared for their cunning and depravity, as well as for their strong magical prowess.


  • Arch-Enemy: Spriggans. Whatever source Hagravens draw their magic from draws the ire of Spriggans, who are considered "Nature's Guardians". Dead Spriggans can frequently be found in and around Hagraven dens, and Hagravens will often display Spriggan heads and parts (including their Taproots) as decorations. One group of Hagravens in Skyrim was even known to sacrifice Spriggans using a special blade specifically crafted for the task.
  • Deal with the Devil:
    • Hagravens are formerly human women who have traded in their humanity for access to powerful magic, though the exact means of the transformation remains mysterious. It is known that a human sacrifice is part of the process.
    • Hagravens are known to strike a deal with a Reachmen warriors in which the Hagraven replaces the warrior's heart with a briar heart, making the warrior much stronger but basically destroying his free will. Briarhearts are frequently found in direct service to Hagravens as a result.
    • A coven of Hagravens called the Glenmoril Witches were responsible for forming a pact between the Daedric Prince Hircine and The Companions of Whiterun, giving the latter the ability to voluntarily shapeshift into werewolves in exchange for Hircine claiming their souls after death.
  • Enemy to All Living Things: Except for the Reachmen, Hagravens seem to view life itself as their enemy.
  • Evil Matriarch: Reachmen groups are often found led by a Hagraven, who they refer to as a Matriarch.
  • Evil Mentor: To Witches, who eventually become Hagravens themselves.
  • Feathered Fiend: Hagravens are villainous bird people.
  • Femme Fatalons: Have literal bird talons for fingers and toes.
  • Harping on About Harpies: A flightless variant of this trope.
  • Human Sacrifice: Part of the ritual of becoming a Hagraven requires sacrificing someone, though they're not so picky as demanding an actual human (Elves or Beast folk will work all the same).
  • One-Gender Race: All known Hagravens have been female.
  • Playing with Fire: Fire-based magic is favored by them. In particular, they prefer fire-based spells with a large Area of Effect.
  • Was Once a Man: Hagravens were once mortal women before undertaking rituals for greater power.
  • Wicked Witch: Hagravens are witches who've given up their humanity and performed a ritual requiring human sacrifice in order to obtain greater magical prowess.
  • Witch Species: Hagravens were formerly mortal witches who traded in their humanity for access to powerful magic. They are absolutely deadly when using spells.

    Hist 
"The Hist tree is the main form of worship among the scaled peoples of these dark swales. Others have hypothesized that the trees are apperceptive, with a deep knowledge and unfathomable secrets from the times before all the races of Man and Mer."
Myths and Legends of the Hist

The Hist are a race of ancient, sentient, giant spore-trees native to Black Marsh. They are worshiped by the Argonians who drink the sap of the Hist to grow, and can communicate with the Hist via visions transmitted in the sap. It is said that the Hist were the original inhabitants of Tamriel, and that they were originally from one of the 12 "worlds of Creation" that were shattered by Padomay and then coalesced by Anu to create Nirn.


  • Botanical Abomination: Combined with being something of an Outside-Context Problem. It is said that the Hist were the original inhabitants of Tamriel, and that they were originally from one of the 12 "Worlds of Creation" that were shattered by Padomay and then coalesced by Anu to create Nirn. They are said to possess "unfathomable" knowledge from the earliest eras of creation, a form of omniscience and foresight into future events, and are able to mentally influence and physically alter beings who drink their sap. They are believed to be utterly alien and utterly incomprehensible, even for those who have achieved CHIM (essentially, a state of awake lucid dreaming that can alter reality along with a full understanding of the workings of the universe), something which can't even be said about the likes of the Daedric Princes.
  • Neutrality Backlash: Despite their neutrality in the Dawn Era "War of the Ehlnofey", much of their realm was destroyed. Black Marsh is said to be a fragment of their realm which survived.
  • The Omniscient: Through unknown means, they are able to foresee future events. Sensing the upcoming Oblivion Crisis and the trials that would follow, they recalled most of the Argonians in Tamriel to the Black Marsh to combat these threats and, through their sap, changed the Argonians physically to better prepare them as weapons of war.
  • Power of the Void: They are said to "acknowledge" Sithis as the original creator of the universe. This would also help explain the Shadowscales, Argonians born under the sign of the Shadow who are given to the Dark Brotherhood to train as assassins, since the Brotherhood operates in direct service to Sithis.
  • These Are Things Man Was Not Meant to Know: They are believed to possess "unfathomable" knowledge from the Dawn Era, before the time of Men and Mer.
  • Time Abyss: Said to be the oldest beings on Tamriel, older than any Man or Mer, and were around to see the wars of the Ehlnofey during the Dawn Era, before linear time had even been conceived of as a concept. According to The Annotated Anuad, the Hist were originally from one of the 12 "worlds of Creation", which were destroyed by Padomay, the embodiment of change, and reassembled into Nirn by Anu, the embodiment of stasis. This would make the Hist literally older than the world itself.
  • When Trees Attack: Subverted. Though sentient and capable of communicating with each other and the Argonians, they are otherwise entirely tree-like — stationary and defenseless on their own. However, they can incite the Argonians to attack on their behalf.
  • Wise Tree: They are believed to have some sort of prophetic knowledge of things to come, and communicate with each other via connected roots and with the Argonians via visions transmitted in their sap. The An-Xileel are a chamber of the government in Argonia who hold almost absolute power in the 4th Era simply because they consult with the Hist; through the visions of the Hist, they managed to recall almost all Argonians in Tamriel because the Hist foresaw the events of the Oblivion Crisis, managed to force Mehrunes Dagon into a retreat from Black Marsh, and then entirely wiped out the Empire's presence in the province as they declared independence.

    Liches 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ob_creature_lich.jpg

"Like a spider in his web, he sucked all their power into himself,
Mannimarco, Worm King, world's first of the undying liches.
Corruption on corruption, 'til the rot sunk to his very core,
Though he kept the name Mannimarco, his body and his mind
Were but a living, moving corpse as he left humanity behind."
Mannimarco, King of Worms

Liches are powerful undead wizards, having sacrificed their very lives and humanity in exchange for extreme magical power. They can be found throughout Tamriel where they can often be found using their gifts in the school of Necromancy to create legions of undead followers. As with many of Tamriel's supernatural creatures, there are regional variants when it comes to the specific powers and abilities of liches. Additionally, there are several rumored means to become a lich, most involving the consumption of a potion made up of powerful magical ingredients. The most famous lich in Tamriellic history is Mannimarco, the "King of Worms", who is said to be the first mortal to successfully become a lich.


  • Anti-Magic: Most liches have powerful resistances (if not outright immunity) to nearly all forms of magic, with the sole exception of Fire-based magic.
  • Area of Effect: Large area of effect fire and shock spells are favored attacks of liches.
  • Burn the Undead: Fire-based spells are the only form of magic most liches are vulnerable to, a trait they share with most forms of undead.
  • Deadly Upgrade: A literal example. By becoming undead, Liches gain immense magical power and a form of immortality.
  • Enemy to All Living Things: Almost nothing living will willingly ally itself with a lich, leading to most liches raising their own undead servants. The one exception is that some liches will work with still-living necromancers, to whom they serve as an Evil Mentor.
  • Immortality Seeker: One of the two main motivations for those seeking to become liches, is the form of undead immortality being a lich imbues. This was the main motivation for Mannimarco, who was seeking to take it even further and become a god.
  • Magic Staff: A common tool for many liches, further enhancing their magical prowess.
  • Our Liches Are Different: Undead wizards who have sacrificed their lives and humanity in exchange for magical powers. One variation on the standard fantasy lich is that a soul jar does not seem to be required, though soul jars are mentioned in lore. Instead, the most popular means for becoming a lich is said to be the consumption of a potion made up of powerful magical ingredients.
  • Monster Progenitor: Mannimarco, being the first lich, set the example of how to do it for others.
  • Necromancy: Many liches were skilled necromancers in life to begin with, and becoming a lich boosts those abilities even further.
  • One-Winged Angel: Some liches are able to maintain a facade of humanity, be it with powerful Illusion magic or something else. After this form is killed, they switch to their true undead forms and must be defeated again.
  • Screwball Serum: Some of the rumored ingredients in the potion needed to become a lich include the tongue of a dragon, blood-tainted herbs, Akaviri poison, dust from saints, sheaves of human skin...
  • Soul Jar: Subverted due to Gameplay and Story Segregation. While soul jars for liches ("phylacteries") have been mentioned in the series' lore, it is rarely brought up in game. One Oblivion quest gives you the option of killing a necromancer who is slowly turning into a lich by destroying his soul jar, but he is not yet a full lich. (And after the transformation, the soul jar no longer holds any power.)
  • Was Once a Man: Liches were once mortals who have undergone a process to become powerful undead wizards.
  • Witch Species: The other of the two main draws to becoming a lich (in addition to undead immortality) is the greatly enhanced magical powers it brings. Liches are among the most powerful magical beings in existence on Nirn.
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    Nymphs 

"The effect of her smile was truly magical, I'm convinced. Her body was, of course, perfect; her face lovely and serene; her hair like silk flame. But until she smiled, she was beautiful in the abstract, a perfect statue by a master. The smile made her approachable and, thus, terrifying."
A Scholar's Guide to Nymphs

Nymphs are a type of nature spirit most commonly found in the Iliac Bay region. They take the form of beautiful, naked, long-haired women and attack using mystical fire spells. Though rumored to be highly sexual beings, most are rather shy and rarely approach mortals on their own. They possess their own language, said to sound similar to Ayleidoon but does not actually share a vocabulary.


  • Brainless Beauty: Another stereotype about Nymphs is that they're dumb, but Ayalea, the Nymph dicussed in A Scholar's Guide to Nymphs, is shown to be quite intelligent in addition to being beautiful.
  • Conlang: They are said to have their own language which is said to sound similar to Ayleidoon, but does not actually share a vocabulary with it. Mortals who can speak it have been known to render Nymphs non-hostile.
  • Extreme Omnisexual: Subverted. While Nymphs are often stereotyped in-universe as being little more than "beautiful, naked women who skip along tra-la-la and like to have indiscriminate sex", they are actually quite shy.
  • Full-Frontal Assault: They attack while stark naked.
  • Nipple and Dimed: Averted, Nymph sprites have very distinct nipples.
  • One-Gender Race: All known Nymphs have been female.
  • Playing with Fire: Their primary attack is a mystical fire spell which drains stamina in addition to health.
  • Shrouded in Myth: As a direct result of scholars believing nymphs to be nothing but brainless sex maniacs, most of what is known about nymphs is mainly conjecture.
  • Silver Has Mystic Powers: Nymphs can only be harmed by standard weapons made of Silver quality or better. (Spells and enchanted weapons of any quality are still effective.)
  • The Unpronounceable: "Ayalea" from A Scholar's Guide to Nymphs is, the author admits, is merely "a poor phonetic transcription" of her real name, which is "a word that sounds more like a light wind blowing through a small crack in a hollow chamber".

    Ogres 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ogre_18.png

"Ogres have not the intelligence to argue a point and take a primal enjoyment when mashing den intruders into malformed corpses. They hunt for food and gather necessities, and enjoy life on Nirn no more than that, with the exception of when employing their considerable strength to wrench apart foes or lob large rocks at them."
Ogres: A Summary

Ogres are a massive humanoid race of limited intelligence found throughout much of mainland Tamriel. Considered a race of "Goblin-ken" who are related to Goblins, Ogres typically have grayish-blue skin, pronounced teeth, and pointed ears, though Ogres in colder climates are known to shaggy white hair covering their bodies as well. They live in primitive hunter-gatherer societies, most often inhabiting natural caves in remote areas. Some Ogres have been able to speak limited Tamriellic and were involved with the original founding of Orsinium. Like Goblins and Orcs, Ogres are known to revere the Daedric Prince Malacath.


  • Amazing Technicolor Population: They typically have grayish-blue skin.
  • Dumb Muscle: Unlike many other races who are still somewhat intelligent despite the general belief that they are not, Ogres are typically every bit as dumb as they are described to be. Exceptions exist, but they are fairly rare.
  • Giant Mook: Ogres are massive and frequently raid settlements and attack travelers in the wilderness areas of Tamriel. Crosses over with Smash Mook in that the vast majority of Ogres are only capable of strong melee attacks.
  • Hot Skitty-on-Wailord Action: According to some (very limited) sources, Ogres are capable of interbreeding with humans. They are easily twice the size of an average man.
  • An Ice Person: Wrothgar Ogres come covered in white hair and can attack with powerful Frost magic.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: They are rumored to eat people and their lairs are often decorated with piles of humanoid bones.
  • Organ Drops: Their teeth have a high alchemical value.
  • Our Ogres Are Hungrier: They largely fit the standard fantasy version, which includes being big, being dumb, and eating people.
  • Pointed Ears: Like Goblins, Ogres have pointed, tapered ears like those of the Mer.
  • Slave Race: Ogres are frequently enslaved by other races as both strong laborers and for use in gladiatorial arenas. This practice is known to greatly anger their patron deity, Malacath.
  • Universal Poison: Ogres are known to have a weakness to magical Poison.

    Rieklings 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/riekling.png

"Hawala faaaakara. Baaaa rakhee kaloo. Pooja kan faroo kee jaa. Goora! Goora! Goora!"
Riekling Godspeak Song

Rieklings are a diminutive, blue-skinned species of humanoid creature native to Solstheim. Outsiders sometimes refer to them as "ice goblins", but they have their own physiology and primitive culture distinct from standard Goblins. They possess moderate intelligence, have their own language but are also capable of speaking Tamriellic, can construct basic structures, have a form of religious beliefs, and are known to tame Solstheim's Tusked Bristlebacks to use as war mounts. Rieklings are not known to exist outside of Solstheim, though one group did venture to mainland Skyrim during the 2nd Era. Nordic history claims that Rieklings are descended from the Falmer, but other scholars dispute this.


  • The Alcoholic: They really like "fizzydrink", which is what they call any alcoholic beverages they scavenge.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Subverted. Like Goblins, they have a reputation for being this toward most of the other races they come into contact with, especially the Nords. Some of this treatment is justified as Rieklings are frequently aggressive, attacking travelers and raiding the settlements of other races. However, there have been examples of Rieklings able to get along with non-Rieklings, following them as leaders and bringing them into their tribes.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: They have blue skin.
  • Anti-Magic: They have an inherent resistance/immunity (depending on the game) to natural cold and magical Frost.
  • Art Evolution: A major case from Bloodmoon, where they more closely resemble small blue humans, to Dragonborn, where they are much more primitive and bestial looking, to Online, where they basically look like a cross between Falmer and Orcs.
  • Beast of Battle: They tame Tusked Bristlebacks (Solstheim's native wild boars) to be this and as mounts.
  • Blade on a Stick: Spears are a favored weapon of theirs. They are small enough to be used by other races as one-handed weapons and even arrows.
  • Cargo Cult: They are known to scavenge detritus from the more civilized races which they then "form a strange attachments" to and have even been witnessed worshiping these relics.
  • Conlang: They have their own primitive language which sounds like gibberish to an untrained ear. They are also capable of learning and speaking Tamriellic.
  • Fun Size: They are only about half the size of an average man.
  • Grim Up North: They are only known to be found in Solstheim, one of the most frigid, dangerous, and inhospitable places in Tamriel.
  • Our Goblins Are Different: They somewhat resemble blue-skinned Goblins and are frequently mistaken for another species of Goblin by outsiders to Solstheim, but Rieklings have their own physiology and culture distinct from standard Goblins. Still, they fit elements of the trope, including their primitive culture, small stature, attacking in groups, and a tendency toward aggression and evil.
  • Pointed Ears: They have pointed, tapered ears like the races of Mer.
  • Trash of the Titans: They are known to hoard random items, from useless Vendor Trash to weapons and armor.
  • You No Take Candle: They have a primitive language and those who speak Tamriellic typically do so in this fashion. The Riekling Chief who took over the Thirsk mead hall is able to speak more coherently, but not by much.
  • Zerg Rush: They are rarely found alone and tend to attack in groups.

    Spriggans 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/spriggan_detail.jpg

"The tree spirits of this island. When the All-Maker breathed life into the creatures of the land, his Breath blew through the trees as well. Some of these trees kept a part of this life, and these are the spriggans you see today."
Skaal Legend

Spriggans are a race of tree spirits who typically take the basic form of tall, humanoid females made of wood. They are found in secluded groves, glades, and forests in the colder climes across all of northern Tamriel including High Rock, Cyrodiil, Skyrim, and Solstheim. Spriggans possess moderate intelligence and speak their own language. They are revered as "Nature's Guardians" and are associated with Kynareth, one of the Nine Divines and goddess of the heavens, winds, and elements. Despite this reverence, Spriggans are usually hostile toward any trespassers in their domain.


  • Arch-Enemy: Hagravens. Whatever source Hagravens draw their power from is apparently despised by Spriggans. Dead Spriggans can frequently be found near Hagraven lairs, and Hagravens will often decorate their lairs with Spriggan heads and parts, including Taproots.
  • The Beastmaster: If threatened, Spriggans can command nearby animals to attack intruders in their domain. They are most fond of doing this with bears, and some varieties of Spriggan can even summon a magical bear from thin air.
  • Bee Afraid: Some Spriggans attack with swarms of bees.
  • Bioluminescence Is Cool: Some Spriggan variants give off bioluminescencent green, purple, or orange lights.
  • Call a Pegasus a "Hippogriff": In Cornish faery lore, Spriggans are a type of goblin with Size Shifter powers. These Spriggans are more akin to violent Dryads.
  • The Corruption: Lurchers are a Spriggan variant created by corrupting a Spriggan through dark magic. The Spriggan's tortured spirit remains trapped inside the corrupted creature until it is slain.
  • Femme Fatalons: They have long, sharpened wooden (or another natural material) claws as fingers which they use as a melee attack.
  • Gaia's Vengeance: They're frequently referred to as "Nature's Guardians". They tend to live in secluded wilderness areas and will violently attack intruders, often commanding nearby animals to aid them as well.
  • Healing Factor: In the games since Bloodmoon, Spriggans have a rapid healing factor which kicks in when their health drops to critically low levels.
  • Kill It with Fire:
    • Spriggans have a significant, justified weakness to fire.
    • Burnt Spriggans, who were Spriggans in Solstheim damaged by Red Mountain's eruption during the Red Year, invert this. They are immune to fire-based spells and can attack with fire-spells of their own.
  • Nature Is Not Nice: Spriggans are revered as Nature's Protectors, and are associated with Kynareth, but they're generally an unfriendly group of nature spirits who attack anyone who intrudes on their domains.
  • Non-Mammal Mammaries: They have a noticeable bust in their forms.
  • Once Is Not Enough: In Bloodmoon, they must be slain three times before they can be fully killed. Each time they are killed, they come back in a larger and more powerful form with additional magical resistances and immunities.
  • One-Gender Race: All known Spriggans have taken a humanoid female form.
  • Plant People: They are a tree-like race who takes the basic form of humanoid females. They typically have bark, branches, and leaves as part of their bodies.
  • Universal Poison: Some Spriggan variants have the ability to cast short-range poison spells, and some are immune to poison as well.
  • When Trees Attack: They are a tree-like race and can often be found camouflaged among other plants and trees in order to ambush intruders to their domains.

    Trolls 

  • Beast of Battle: The vampire-hunting organisation the Dawnguard sometimes uses domesticated trolls, fitted with crude suits of armor and wrist-mounted blades, as shock troops during their vampire hunts.
  • Extra Eyes: Trolls have a third eye in the middle of their foreheads.
  • Healing Factor: Trolls can recover from wounds they receive much more quickly than most other creatures of Tamriel, even without the use of healing magic.
  • All Trolls Are Different: The Elder Scrolls interpretation of trolls is as large, hairy, ape-like creatures with long, powerful arms and sharp claws.
  • Weak to Fire: Fire-based attacks and spells are highly recommended when battling trolls, as they mess with the beast's inherent Healing Factor. There have been some reported instances of trolls that refused to die until their bodies were burned with torches.

    Vampires 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/newvampface.png
A stage 4 vampire from Skyrim.

"Know first that we are no simple tribe of savages, tearing throats with the orgiastic abandon of our scattered, tribal brethren. Ours is a civil fraternity, to which we are bound — every one — by our dual hunger for flesh and influence."
"To Kin-father Molag Bal, who brought forth the Bloodmatron Lamae to spite Arkay, we owe our existence, as do all vampires, though not all honor Him."
Manifesto Cyrodiil Vampyrum

Tamriellic Vampires are preternatural beings, typically considered a type of undead, who are feared and loathed as abominations throughout Tamriel. Vampirism is technically a form of disease, generally starting off innocuous before developing into full Vampirism, after which it is nearly impossible to cure. The diseases which cause Vampirism can be transmitted through any wound inflicted by a Vampire. There are numerous regional bloodlines of Vampires (with over 100 known, according to some sources) with many differing features and abilities. These bloodlines generally have a few traits in common, however, such as the presence of fangs, pale skin, agelessness, immunity to other diseases, enhanced night vision, sensitivity to sunlight (ranging from irritation to outright burns upon exposure), and the need to consume humanoid blood (or another vital substance).

Vampirism is a creation of Molag Bal, the Daedric Prince of Domination and Corruption. Mortals who obtain their Vampirism directly from Molag Bal are known as "Pure-blood" Vampires and typically have greater powers as a result. These Pure-bloods hold those who become Vampires via disease ("half-breeds") in low regard. All non-Pure-blood Vampires can trace their lineage back to Lamae Beolfag, known as the "Blood Mother", who became the first to suffer the disease following being raped by Molag Bal. Molag Bal created the disease to upset the balance of life and death maintained by one of his fiercest enemies, the Aedric Divine Arkay.

For the specifics of vampire clans as factions, see the factions subpage.


  • Adult Fear: In addition to the usual "being preyed upon while you sleep" fear inherent to all vampires, the Telboth vampire bloodline of Valenwood is known to prey upon children. The Telboth are then said to take the place of those children, eventually killing the entire family.
  • The Ageless: Agelessness is a near universal trait among all Vampire bloodlines. One caveat is that they typically must continue to feed, otherwise they will go irrevocably insane and feral. These feral Vampires are known as "Bloodfiends".
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Played with, as this is the opinion of many in-universe in regards to Vampires. For example, the Tribunal Temple of Morrowind considered that, because it is easy to tell when you have been infected and that infection can easily be cured within the first few days of contracting it, those who become Vampires allowed themselves to become Vampires, and were thus already irredeemably evil. This attitude is shared by many other groups throughout Tamriel, including numerous other religious groups and the Vigilants of Stendarr. As several incidents make clear (Galur Rithari, Janus Hassildor, etc.) this can be subverted depending on the individual.
  • Anti-Magic: Most Vampire bloodlines are immune to magical poisons and paralysis. Others have more specific anti-magical defenses, such as the Selenu clan of Hammerfell, which is highly resistant to elemental Destruction-school of magic attacks.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Vampirism brings with it many positive qualities, but an overwhelming amount of negative qualities which can make it impractical as well. The need to feed on sapient beings, being damaged by sunlight, being ostracized from normal society...
  • Beast of Battle: The Volkihar bloodline of Skyrim is known to raise Death Hounds, monstrous undead dogs, for this role.
  • Black Eyes of Evil: A trait of several Vampire bloodlines. Others instead of pale and blank Empty Eyes, lacking pupils or an irises.
  • Breaking and Bloodsucking: Common among many bloodlines, who feed on sleeping victims. The act of feeding itself does not seem to wake the victims.
  • Bullet Time: Pure-blood Vampire Lords have a spell which mimics this effect.
  • Burn the Witch!: Vampires are almost universally loathed, feared, and ostracized throughout Tamriel, and are often killed on sight as abominations wherever they are found. Fire is a very common method of executing them, given their usual weakness to it.
  • Charm Person: A very common trait among Vampire bloodlines is the ability to enthrall mortal servants.
  • Convenient Coma: Members of the Whet-Fang vampire bloodline in the Black Marsh are known to place their victims in a magically induced coma, allowing them to feed on the victim at their convenience.
  • Creature-Hunter Organization: Many Vampire-hunting organizations have existed throughout Tamriellic history, most famously the Dawnguard. Other groups are known to hunt Vampires along with other manners of supernatural being, including the Tribunal Temple of Morrowind and the Vigilants of Stendarr.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Or Blessed with Suck, depending on the opinion of the infected individual. Vampirism brings with it agelessness, disease immunity, typically enhanced speed and physical strength, and typically enhanced magical abilities. However, it forces the individual to consume blood or else risk weakness and insanity, can drastically alter the individual's appearance, and can cause the individual to be ostracized by society to the point of being hunted and killed outright.
  • Daylight Horror: Some Vampire clans have been known to attack during the day, sending the message that not even sunlight will protect their enemies.
  • Daywalking Vampire: Generally averted by most bloodlines. Even for those who aren't outright harmed by sunlight, Vampires are typically far weaker during the day, downplaying it.
  • Deceased and Diseased: Vampires are considered a form of undead, and many strains of vampirism are spread through diseases, with names like Porphyric Haemophilia and Sanguinare Vampiris. They are typically contracted through being attacked by a vampire, and will cause the victim to mutate into a vampire themselves if they don't manage to cure themselves before the disease has fully incubated.
  • Dhampyr: There have been known instances of Tamriellic vampires producing offspring with non-vampires. Any traits inherited from the vampire parent are pretty mild, however. One of the most famous instances was Agronak gro-Malog, aka "The Grey Prince", champion of the Imperial City Arena in the late 3rd Era.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: Any member of any of the playable races can become a Vampire. Whether they are accepted by other Vampires is a different story, however.
  • Evil Is Deathly Cold: Many Vampire bloodlines, especially those in Skyrim, have a particular affinity for cold places and frost-based magic.
  • Fate Worse than Death: What many consider Vampirism to be, particularly the Tribunal Temple of Morrowind. They see a swift Mercy Kill as the only "cure" for the disease. (Facts to the contrary be damned.)
  • Find the Cure!: While it is widely believed throughout Tamriel that there is no cure for Vampirism, there are recorded cases of individuals being cured. Knowledge of how to be cured is typically suppressed for two major reasons: One, because the cure is often extremely unsavory (such as currying favor with Molag Bal, convening with witches, or using sapient souls). Two, in order to discourage wannabe Vampires from intentionally infecting themselves with the disease.
  • Fur Against Fang: Generally averted. Vampires and Were-creatures are not known to have any specific animosity toward one another, though individual instances have occurred. This is more enforced thematically, however, as they are the blessings of different Daedric Princes; as a result lycanthropy and vampirism are mutually exclusive, and vampirism is often about totally dominating and crushing lesser, while lycanthropy is about the duality of the hunt, with the hunter becoming the hunted and vice versa.
  • Glamour Failure: For many Vampire bloodlines, going too long without feeding will change their appearance to become more and more monstrous, until they are no longer able to pass as a non-Vampire and may be attacked on sight.
  • Glowing Eyes: Dawnguard reveals that all Vampires have glowing golden eyes, but it is strongly implied that only some other beings of a supernatural nature (such as the Dragonborn who possesses a draconic Aedric soul) can actually see this quality. Mortals typically only mention them having an ill-defined "hunger" to their eyes. Can qualify as Glowing Eyes of Doom if the vampire in question is malevolent.
  • I Hate You, Vampire Dad: A common reaction among a Vampire's friends and family. The Grey Prince, the Champion of the Imperial City Arena in the late 3rd Era, invoked this on himself after discovering that his father was a vampire.
  • Healing Factor: A trait in some Vampire bloodlines. Often times, this occurs immediately after feeding. This was one of the very first traits displayed by Lamae Beolfag which terrified the nomads who rescued her, leading to them attacking and her slaughtering them all. Especially rapid healing is known to be a trait of the Thrafey bloodline of High Rock.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Because Vampirism is a disease that can be transmitted via any wound inflicted by a Vampire, becoming a Vampire is a common fate of many Vampire hunters who aren't outright killed. Most carry disease curing potions on their person for immediate consumption in the event they become infected.
  • Horror Hunger: Many Vampire bloodlines can pass as non-Vampires as long as they feed regularly. However, the longer a Vampire goes without feeding, the more monstrous they become in both appearance and temperament, until the point that they go irrevocably insane and feral. These feral Vampires are referred to as "Bloodfiends".
  • Ideal Illness Immunity: All known Vampire bloodlines come with the advantage of being immune to all other diseases. (This also makes for a One Curse Limit and Hybrid Overkill Avoidance with Lycanthropy, as each makes a person immune to the other.)
  • Innate Night Vision: Most Vampire bloodlines are known to have inherent enhanced night vision abilities.
  • Invisibility:
    • Another common trait of many bloodlines. Whether it is an inherent ability or simply using the Vampire's enhanced abilities in the Illusion-school of magic varies.
    • Some bloodlines also possess the ability to see invisible individuals.
  • Kill It with Fire: A weakness to fire and fire-based magic is common among Vampire bloodlines.
  • Light 'em Up: Several spells in the Restoration school of magic are specifically designed to harm undead, including Vampires. These spells take the form of balls and auras of light.
  • Looks Like Orlok: Many vampires fit, though it varies depending on the bloodline. Some, like the Iliac Bay bloodlines and the Vvardenfell bloodlines, have many Orlok-like feature from the start. Others, such as the Cyrodiilic and Skyrim bloodlines, only gain this appearance if they go long enough without feeding.
  • The Masquerade:
    • Many Vampires are able to blend in with general population of Tamriel. For many bloodlines, as long as they stay well-fed, they are indistinguishable from mortals of the same race.
    • One bloodline, the Bonsamu of Valenwood, are completely indistinguishable unless seen in candlelight, which will reveal their true nature.
  • Monster Progenitor: All non-Pure-blood Vampires can their lineage back to Lamae Beolfag, a Nedic Priestess of Arkay who was raped by Molag Bal, turning her into the first Vampire.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: While the general scholarly consensus is that Lamae Beolfag was indeed the first vampire, there are other origin stories as well. Given the numerous other bloodlines and tales of other individuals acquiring Vampirism directly from Molag Bal as well, it's possible that each of these stories has some truth to them.
  • Necromancy: Many Vampire bloodlines practice necromancy, with some even gaining special abilities and aptitudes for it.
  • Nightmare Sequence: One of the side effects of Vampirism is having disturbing and grisly dreams. In Oblivion this would mean that your vampirism stage advances.
  • No Body Left Behind: Many Vampires turn to dust when they are killed, and this dust can be collected as a valuable alchemical ingredient.
  • Nonindicative Name: Ash Vampires, high ranking servants of Dagoth Ur, are not actually Vampires. Some sources refer to them instead by the much more accurate term "Heart Wights".
  • No Ontological Inertia: Several Vampire bloodlines in the Iliac Bay region are known to have this as a weakness. If their progenitor is killed or cured, the other vampires of the bloodline will lose their powers as well. This is said to include Rapid Aging as well, and for those who have been alive longer than their natural lifespans, leads to death.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: While Tamriellic Vampires have many traits in common with those of classic Vampire lore (the presence of fangs, pale skin, agelessness, immunity to other diseases, sensitivity to sunlight, and the need to consume humanoid blood) there are many differences as well. Tamriellic Vampirism is a disease which originates with the Daedric Prince Molag Bal, and Tamriellic Vampires typically do not need to feed to survive (and some bloodlines even grow stronger if they go without feeding), though they do go irrevocably insane if they go too long without feeding. There are also numerous other differences within the Vampire bloodlines that make each one distinct from the others.
  • Power Floats: The ability to levitate is common among many Vampire bloodlines, especially Pure-bloods.
  • The Power of the Sun: All known Vampire bloodlines are, at the very least, weaker in sunlight than they are at night. This ranges from a mild irritation which prevents natural healing and Magicka regen, to outright being burned by sunlight and potentially being killed by it.
  • The Renfield: Vampires often use powerful Charm-like spells to enthrall mortals into their service. Other mortals willingly serve Vampires, typically hoping to become Vampires themselves.
  • Silver Has Mystic Powers: While many Vampire bloodlines are resistant or immune to normal weapons, weapons made of silver tend to be an exception, dealing extra damage to Vampires.
  • Stronger with Age: Typically true of most Vampire bloodlines thanks to their agelessness, as long as they feed regularly enough to stave off insanity. Vampire Ancients are some of the most powerful Vampires in Tamriel and can be thousands of years old.
  • Super Mode: Pure-blood Vampires have the ability to transform into a "Vampire Lord" form, drastically increasing in size, strength, and magical prowess.
  • Super Smoke: Turning into a cloud of mist is an ability of the Keerilth vampire bloodline in Valenwood. Vampire Lords also have this as an ability during the night.
  • Teleport Spam: This is an ability of the Montalion bloodline in the Iliac Bay region.
  • Torches and Pitchforks: The typical reaction of any given community in Tamriel when they discover a Vampire in their midst, unless there is a Vampire Hunter group nearby to call instead.
  • Vampiric Draining: A common trait of the majority of Vampire bloodlines. Some exceptions are known to magically absorb the health of their prey or consume their prey whole instead.
  • Vampire Refugee: Many who become Vampires did not do so by choice, leading to this. Accidental Vampires are often shunned by Vampire clans and in many cultures, the infected is no longer welcome at best (or outright killed on sight at worst). Many spend their time seeking a cure.
  • Vampire Vannabe: There have been many cases of mortals who wish to become Vampires, often entering the service of Vampires in hopes of being rewarded with the disease. Though being cured is possible, the knowledge of how to do so is often suppressed to prevent these types of people from intentionally infecting themselves.
  • Vampire Variety Pack: Due to the many different vampire bloodlines with differing appearances and abilities, this trope is in full effect.
  • Viral Transformation: Vampirism is technically a disease. It starts off fairly innocuous (fatigue, insomnia, nightmares) and is easily cured within the first few days of being contracted. Porphyric Hemophilia, Sanguinare Vampiris, and Noxiphilic Sanguivoria are a few of the disease that develop into full-blown Vampirism.
  • Was Once a Man: Played straight on two levels:
    • All Vampires were once mortals who have been infected with a disease that caused their transformation, or was a "gift" received directly from Molag Bal.
    • If a Vampire goes too long without feeding, they are known to go irrevocably insane and feral. These feral Vampires are referred to as "Bloodfiends".
  • Witch Species: Many Vampire bloodlines give immense boosts to spellcasting abilities, particularly in the Illusion, Mysticism, and Destruction schools of magic. Vampires are perhaps second only to Liches out of undead creatures in terms of their inherent magical prowess.
  • You Are Who You Eat: An unusual inversion for some bloodlines, who get more powerful the longer they go without feeding. However, their appearance tends to become more monstrous (making their vampiric nature obvious) and they risk irrevocable insanity if they go too long without feeding.

    Were-creatures 
"Werewolves are sturdy hybrids with powerful jaws and claws on both hands and feet. They stand three hands taller than an Orc and exhibit severe bloodlust. If you encounter one, attempt to flee at all costs unless you feel supremely confident in your arms and armor. If possible, thrust the indigenous population into the path of the lycanthrope, so it sates its appetite on them while you retreat to cover or your mount. If you must fight a werewolf, arm yourself with any silver weapon, as these have proven extremely effective. However, prepare for severe gash wounds and the possibility of becoming infected."
Dealing with Werewolves

The Were-creatures of Nirn, also known as Lycanthropesnote , are supernatural beings made up of a cross between a beast and their original species. Like Vampirism, Lycanthropy is technically a disease and can be spread through any wound inflicted by an infected individual. It is easily cured within the first few days of being contracted, but once it fully progresses, it becomes far more difficult to cure. There are also rare instances of the disease being hereditary. There are numerous variations of were-creatures found through Tamriel, with many appearing only in certain regions. Werewolves are by far the most common, and can be found across the entire continent with higher concentrations in the northern regions. The exact effects of the disease vary greatly between individuals and regions. The most common effect is an involuntary transformation into a humanoid beast form at night, with the frequency of the transformation varying from nightly to monthly. Other individuals have the ability to transform voluntarily. For those who transform involuntarily, they must commonly kill a sentient being during the night or risk returning to their mortal form in an extremely weakened state.

Lycanthropy is a creation of Hircine, the Daedric Prince of the Hunt, who bestows it as a blessing. He considers were-creatures to be the epitome of the nature of a hunt. During the night, they are vicious beasts who hunt their prey. During the day, they become the hunted to the very same prey. Were-creatures also have a spiritual connection to Hircine, as he claims their souls upon death to forever serve in his realm of Oblivion, known as the Hunting Grounds.


  • Alternate Identity Amnesia: The disease can be transmitted directly and instantly by consuming the blood of an infected Lycanthrope. However, conversion using this method causes an instant "unusually intense" transformation, often accompanied by amnesia. Later transformations do not have this amnesia.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: In the opinion of most mortal denizens of Tamriel, at least. Known were-creatures are ostracized and frequently hunted down as monsters. Played with in different instances, as many were-creatures do give into their bestial urges and kill indiscriminately, sometimes going completely insane (even in their mortal forms). Others, like the Companions of Skyrim, avert it outright. (It likely helps that their particular form of the disease allows for voluntary transformations.)
  • Armor-Piercing Attack: The claw attacks from were-creatures are known to outright ignore armor.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Becoming a were-creature gives a massive power boost while transformed. However, while transformed, they cannot use items, equipment, or magic. Additionally, being a known were-creature will typically get one ostracized from society and potentially killed on sight.
  • Bat Out of Hell: Werebats are a form of Lycanthrope found most commonly in the forests of Valenwood. They are massive human-sized fliers.
  • Bears Are Bad News: Werebears are a form of Lycanthrope found most commonly in the colder northern regions of Tamriel. They are massive, even larger than werewolves, with muscular bodies and large claws. They are known to have a rivalry with werewolves, often killing them they come into contact with eachother.
  • The Beastmaster: Wolves and bears are sometimes known to have reduced hostility toward werewolves and werebears, respectively, even if they aren't in beast form. They are also sometimes known to hunt with and follow werewolves and werebears when they are in beast form. The howl of a werewolf or growl of a werebear has also been known to summon wolves or bears to aid the creature in battle.
  • Bizarre Alien Reproduction: On Lycanthropy suggests this as a possible explanation for werebeasts' Horror Hunger: since they don't need to eat meat to survive, it's possible that they "feel the need to spread the disease as a form of procreation".
  • Creature-Hunter Organization: Like Vampires, were-creatures have their fair share of specialized hunters. The Silver Hand is one of the most famous, and one of the most ruthless as well. The Vigilants of Stendarr are known to include were-creatures among those that they attempt to cleanse from Tamriel.
  • Cursed with Awesome:
    • Or Blessed with Suck depending on the opinion of the inflicted individual. Were-creatures are able to transform into powerful monsters, but enter a vicious hunter/hunted cycle as the are typically demonized by their fellow mortals. Additionally, Hircine claims their souls upon death to hunt and/or be hunted in his Hunting Grounds realm, regardless of what afterlife they may have preferred.
    • For the Circle of Skyrim's Companions, who are gifted with the ability to voluntarily transform, many of the downsides are lessened or outright removed. Additionally, contracting the disease but never voluntarily transforming still brings with it immunity to disease at the cost of restless sleep.
  • Daylight Horror: Most forms of were-creature undergo an involuntary transformation at night, but some, especially those with a voluntary transformation, can transform during the day.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: Any member of any of the playable races can become a were-creature. Whether they are accepted by others of their kind is a different story, however.
  • Find the Cure!: While it is widely believed throughout Tamriel that there is no cure for Lycanthropy, there are recorded cases of individuals being cured. Knowledge of how to be cured is typically suppressed for two major reasons: One, because the cure is often extremely unsavory (such as convening with witches or making human sacrifices). Two, in order to discourage wannabe Lycanthropes from intentionally infecting themselves with the disease.
  • Full-Boar Action: Wereboars a type of were-creature found most commonly in the Iliac Bay region. They are humanoid boars complete with tusks and spiny looking hair on their backs.
  • Fur Against Fang: Generally averted. Were-creatures and Vampires are not known to have any specific animosity toward one another, though individual instances have occurred.
  • Giant Flyer: Werevultures are a form of were-creature native to the forests of Valenwood.
  • Glamour Failure: Downplayed in that it's not especially obvious, but some were-creatures retain traces of their beast form while in mortal form. Werewolves are sometimes known to have fur in their ears or have a "wet dog" smell, for example.
  • Hereditary Curse: In a roundabout way. One known means of curing Lycanthropy is to infect someone who has a dormant, hereditary version of the disease. Passing it on to such a person removed the disease completely from the original Lycanthrope.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Because Lycanthropy is a disease that can be transmitted via any wound inflicted by a were-creature, becoming a were-creature is a common fate of many Lycanthrope hunters who aren't outright killed. Most carry disease curing potions or ingredients on their person for immediate consumption in the event they become infected.
  • Horror Hunger: Combined with a form of Cannibalism Superpower. Consuming humanoid beings they've slain (or at least eating their hearts) allows were-creatures to recover lost health.
  • Human Sacrifice: One known cure for the disease requires bringing a human sacrifice to the Glenmoril witches coven. The witches will kill the sacrifice, infect the sacrifice's flesh with the disease, and the resurrect the sacrifice. The original Lycanthrope must then kill the sacrifice a second time, which will also permanently destroy their inner beast.
  • The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: They embody this idea. At night, they are dangerous monsters and hunt mortals while they have the advantage. During the day, however, they revert to their own weaker mortal forms and must flee from the mortals they were just preying on.
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: Were-creatures are overcome with an intense bloodlust and typically must hunt and kill at least one sentient being while transformed. If they fail to do so, they will return to their original form in an extremely weakened state.
  • Ideal Illness Immunity: Lycanthropy brings with it immunity to all other diseases. It thus enforces One Curse Limit and Hybrid Overkill Avoidance with Vampirism.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: While seemingly not a requirement, were-creatures are frequently known to devour at least part of their kills. This is known to replenish lost strength and health.
  • Involuntary Shapeshifter: While there are known instances of individuals who can control their transformations, the majority of were-creatures cannot. While the frequency of the transformation varies, they generally have no control over it when it is time.
  • Lunacy: Averted. While some denizens of Tamriel still believe there is a connection between the moon and were-creatures, this is not the case. Depending on the exact form of lycanthropy present in the infected, they may transform nightly, monthly, or voluntarily at any time.
  • The Masquerade: In their mortal forms, were-creatures are usually indistinguishable from any other mortals. This allows them to live and function within normal society as long as they aren't witnessed transforming.
  • Monster Progenitor: Were-creatures were a creation of the Daedric Prince Hircine. He sees them as the embodiment of the spirit of the hunt, and they serve him in life as mortal agents and in death as the "hounds" of his Hunting Grounds realm.
  • Natural Weapon: Most beast forms come with some form of claws and/or fangs. These are even able to harm creatures which are otherwise immune to normal weapons, such as ghosts and some forms of lesser Daedra.
  • Never Smile at a Crocodile: Werecrocodiles are a form of were-creature most commonly found in the swamps of Black Marsh and southern Morrowind. They are known to lurk in isolated swamps.
  • Our Gods Are Different: The Daedric Prince Hircine maintains an active role in his creations existence, as he has been known to personally enhance favored Lycanthropes with increased abilities and rewards some with items of power, such as the Ring of Hircine, which allows a Lycanthrope to control his or her transformations. Hircine has even been approached or summoned by packs of werewolves to appoint a pack leader, thus serving as a advisor and an important figure among Lycanthropes.
  • Our Werebeasts Are Different: Tamriellic Lycanthropes are known to take many forms, including werewolves, werebears, werebats, werecrocodiles, werelions, wereboars, werevultures, and legends even tell of weresharks. All can trace their origins back to Hircine, the Daedric Prince of the Hunt, who created the disease as a blessing for his followers. Hircine views his werecreatures as the embodiment of the very idea of the hunt, being ideal hunters at night before turning to prey during the day as they become the hunted. Transformations vary from nightly, to monthly, to voluntary.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: Werewolves are the most common type of werecreature in Tamriel, being found all across the continent. Tamriellic werewolves are bi-pedal, though they may move in a quadrupedal fashion when traveling at high speeds, with elongated arms and human-like hands. Like the other were-creatures, the transformations are caused by a divine disease bestowed as a blessing by Hircine and which can be spread through any wound inflicted by the infected.
  • Panthera Awesome: Werelions are a form of were-creature most commonly found in Elsweyr, Black Marsh, and Cyrodiil.
  • Rerouted from Heaven: Regardless of which afterlife one may prefer, Hircine claims the souls of all were-creatures upon death to spend eternity in his realm of the Hunting Grounds.
  • Shapeshifter Baggage: Were-creatures typically put on significant bulk when they transform. Given that the disease has a divine origin, it probably excuses it from adhering to real world physics.
  • Silver Has Mystic Powers: Were-creatures often have a resistance to normal weapons, but take extra damage from silver weapons.
  • Super Mode: Essentially, the disease temporarily transforms mortals into a powerful beast.
  • This Was His True Form: Averted. Unlike many instances of the trope, Tamriel's were-creatures typically do not revert to their mortal forms upon death. This also helps were-creature hunters avert Van Helsing Hate Crimes.
  • Threatening Shark: Tamriellic legend tells of weresharks found in the oceans around the continent. However, there have never been any reputable sightings and they are considered to be myths.
  • Torches and Pitchforks: A common reaction to finding a were-creature in the midst of a community throughout Tamriel. A rule in the Imperial Legion requires soldiers who are infected with the disease to turn themselves in for immediate execution. This is also prevalent in Bosmer communities, as the Green Pact forbids any sort of transformation other the ritual Wild Hunt.
  • Transformation Is a Free Action: Averted. The transformation from mortal form to beast form takes at least a few seconds.
  • Vampire Refugee: Many who become were-creatures did not do so by choice, leading to this. The infected is no longer welcome at best (or outright killed on sight at worst). Many spend their time seeking a cure.
  • Vegetarian Carnivore: Werewolves can apparently completely subsist on an herbivorous diet, assuming they can resist the Horror Hunger for human flesh. Presumably this extends to other lycanthropes as well.
  • Viral Transformation: Lycanthropy is technically a disease and can be transmitted via any wound inflicted by the infected. It starts off fairly mild (drowsiness, fatigue, restless sleep) and is easily cured within a 3-day "incubation" period. Sanies Lupinus and Canis Hysteria are two of the diseases which develop into full-blow Lycanthropy. Additionally, drinking the blood of the infected is known to lead to instant conversion. The first transformation using this method is unusually intense and often accompanied by amnesia.
  • Your Soul Is Mine: Hircine claims the souls of all were-creatures upon their death, usually whether or not they worship other entities or want to go to other afterlives.
  • Zerg Rush: Were-creatures commonly form packs with were-creatures of the same type. They are known to attack in groups.


Akaviri Races

A collective name for the races that hail from the land of Akavir, also known as "Dragon Land", far to the east of Tamriel.

    In General 
  • Named After Their Planet: Or region, in this case. Each race is simply named after their homeland and whatever they may call themselves is unknown. (Notable because this isn't the case for any of the races of Tamriel.note )
  • Unreliable Expositor: Much of what is known about the races other than the Tsaesci comes from Mysterious Akavir, a book that, even if it were accurate when written (which is not a given), is over two-hundred years out of date by the time of Skyrim.
  • The Unseen: To date, none of the Akaviri races have made an appearance in-the-flesh in the series.
  • Wutai: Akavir itself has considerable Asian influences, and seems to play the role of Asia to Tamriel's Europe.
  • Yellow Peril: Given that Akavir is rooted in East Asian cultures, most of their interaction with Tamriel in the west has been as deadly, mysterious, and frightening invaders. A few Akaviri have settled in the West, but even they are often mysterious and crafty antagonists.

    Kamal 
The Kamal (meaning "Snow Hell") are a race of "snow demons" hailing from the frigid northern part of Akavir. Every year, they freeze during the winter and thaw out in the spring, at which point they attack the Tang Mo (and one time, Tamriel).
  • Evil Is Deathly Cold: They are referred to as "snow demons", freeze every winter, and their home is referred to as "Snow Hell".
  • Failure Is the Only Option: Not even once have they succeeded in defeating Tang Mo. The one time they broke that cycle was to attack Tamriel, and that also failed.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Implied to be of the Mongols. "Savage" invaders from the north who attempt to raid and pillage their more peaceful neighbors.
  • Grim Up North: Their home is literally called "Snow Hell" and it is located in the north of Akavir.
  • Hidden Depths: Pretty much everything on them comes from Mysterious Akavir, but as one of two Akaviri groups to have invaded Tamriel they do have some other mentions — onenote  of which suggests that at least in a Tamrielic context they can recognise themselves (and be recognised) as kin to the Tsaesci descendants found in Tamriel and ally towards a common, constructive goal.
  • Human Popsicle: They freeze and thaw every year.
  • Vicious Cycle: Freeze, thaw out, attack the Tang Mo, freeze, thaw out... The one time it was broken was to attack Tamriel instead, and it also failed.

    Ka Po' Tun 
The Ka Po' Tun (meaning "Tiger-Dragon's Empire", originally just Po' Tun) are a race of "tiger-folk" and are said to be the most powerful empire in Akavir. They highly revere dragons and it is the goal of their race to become dragons.
  • Achilles' Heel: While they have become the strongest empire in Akavir, their greatest weakness is sea warfare.
  • Arch-Enemy: To the Tsaesci, who attempted to "eat" the dragons which the Ka Po' Tun highly revere. Tosh Raka intends to exterminate them.
  • Cat Folk: They're purely tiger-folk.
  • Cat-like Dragons: The goal of the Ka Po' Tun is to become these. To date, only their leader, Tosh Raka, is said to have succeeded, becoming a massive dragon with black and orange scales.
  • Enemy Mine: They have recently (relative to when Mysterious Akavir was written) allied with the Tang Mo, who were former enemies.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Implied to be of China. Tosh Raka has a number of similarities to Mao Zedong especially.
  • God-Emperor: Tosh Raka, the Tiger-Dragon. He has become the largest dragon on Nirn and is covered with orange and black scales. (Other sources claim this story to be metaphorical at best.)
  • Pyrrhic Victory: Their war with the Tsaesci left them as the strongest empire on Akavir, but the war was very costly to both sides and left all of Akavir's dragons dead.
  • Scaled Up: To become a dragon is the ultimate goal of the Ka Po' Tun. The current emperor, Tosh Raka the Tiger-Dragon, is the only one known to have attained this goal.

    Tang Mo 
The Tang Mo (meaning "Thousand Monkey Isles") are a race of "monkey-folk" consisting of many breeds. Described as kind and brave, but also simple and mad, they are bitter enemies of the Kamal and Tsaesci, but have allied themselves with their former enemy in the Ka Po' Tun.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Though described as simple and mad, they've successfully defended themselves time after time against all of the neighboring races.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Described as very simple and mad, but have successfully defended themselves from their neighbor races, particularly the Kamal.
  • Enemy Mine: They have recently (relative to when Mysterious Akavir was written) allied with the Ka Po' Tun, who were former enemies.
  • Everything's Better with Monkeys: They're monkeyfolk.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Possibly of Korea and/or India, facing constant attacks from their aggressive neighbors. Those countries have been ravaged at various points in history by the Mongols, Chinese, and Japanese, the counterpart cultures for the Kamal, Ka Po' tun, and Tsaesci, respectively.
  • Idiot Hero: They are kind and brave, but also very simple.
  • Underdogs Never Lose: They always come up on top against their far more powerful enemies.

    Tsaesci 
The Tsaesci (meaning "Snake Palace") are a race of vampiric "snake-folk" (though conflicting sources state that they are men little different from those in Tamriel). They were formerly the most powerful empire of Akavir and notably influenced the Cyrodiilic Empire after their failed invasion of Tamriel in the late 1st Era, particularly the creation of the Blades.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: The Tsaesci are the only race on all of Nirn that are not impacted by birthsigns, due to a "subdermal culture." What exactly this means is never explained.
  • Anti-Magic: The Imperial Battlemages who accompanied Uriel V during his failed invasion of Akavir claim to have been "abnormally weak" while there. It is speculated that the Tsaesci had something to do with it.
  • Arch-Enemy: Dragons, which also leads to the Ka Po' Tun. Their hatred for dragons has led to them attempting wipe all dragons from the face of Nirn (which at least partially motivated their 1st Era invasion of Tamriel). The Ka Po' Tun revere the dragons and are attempting to wipe out the Tsaesci in return.
  • Badass Army: While the warriors and mages of Tamriel were strong fighters, especially the Nords, Nedes, and Bretons, the Tsaesci invaders where incredibly organized and disciplined, to the point that Nord berserkers and warriors just broke against their unbreakable battle lines. It took the concerted effort of allied Cyrodiilic, Nord, and Morrowind forces to eventually defeat the Tsaesci, and even then, the Tsaesci only bowed to Reman when they realized he was Dragonborn. Reman promptly conquered most of Tamriel in large part by applying Tsaesci organization and discipline to the military traditions of the nascent Cyrodiilic Legions.
  • Cadre of Foreign Bodyguards: Their Dragonguard served as this initially to Reman Cyrodiil and his descendants. They inspired the Blades who came after them.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: After Reman Cyrodiil used the Thu'um against them in battle during their invasion of Tamriel, they recognized him as Dragonborn, who the Tsaesci believe to be the ultimate dragon slayers. He incorporated the surviving Tsaesci into his armies, where they served him as bodyguards, dragon hunters, and would be the precursors to the Blades. They also became a great cultural influence within the empire.
  • Dual Wielding: As they have a cultural aversion to shields (detailed below), they are known to wield a katana in their dominant hand and a wakizashi in their off-hand as a favored fighting style.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Possibly of Japan, where the weapons and armor attributed to them are very Japanese in design. Their Dragonguard (which would inspire the Blades) also has elements of Samurai culture.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: If the theory that they literally ate the Men of Akavir is true. (As opposed to "devoured" simply being a metaphor for enslavement and/or cultural absorption.)
  • Katanas Are Just Better: They have a number of Japanese-style weapons associated with them, particularly the katana. They introduced it to Tamriel when they invaded, and it became the iconic weapon of the Blades who drew inspiration from their Dragonguard.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: Sources radically conflict over whether the Tsaesci are serpentine at all.
    • On the "human-like" side: Several in-game books outright state that they are humans little different from those in Tamriel. One account specifically mentions a Tsaesci soldier with an injured leg. The most recent (and probably most reliable) account, Uriel V's campaign report from the 3rd Era, does not describe them as snake-like at all. It also mentions them having "mounted raiders", which would be a difficult task for a species without legs. The Akaviri ghosts and skeletons who appear at a few points in the series are completely humanoid in appearance.
    • On the "serpentine" side: Mysterious Akavir, a work of admittedly dubious accuracy, supports this side. Additionally, the in-universe historical fiction (loosely based on in-universe historical events) 2920, The Last Year of the First Era also describes them as having serpentine lower bodies. Other chronicles, such as "History of the Fighter's Guild" indicate that the Tsaesci couldn't wear human armor at all, indicating a non-humanoid shape. Online has an item, an Akaviri Silver Mask, which depicts a reptilian-looking appearance.
    • The Take a Third Option-option: Since the "races" of Akavir share their names with the name of their nation, it's possible that they aren't one single "race", but multiple races living within those nations. The "Tsaesci" could include serpentine snake vampires as well as the former Men of Akavir and/or their cross bred descendants.
    • There is another suggested theory that the Tsaesci are actually shapeshifters who can change between humanoid and snake-like bodies. There's even a suggestion that the Tsaesci could be akin to lycanthropes.
    • The Elder Scrolls Online seems to lean toward the humanoid interpretation, as a few Tsaesci remnants can actually be encountered in Elsewyr, and they are all humanoid. However, they have very strong serpentine themes to them, and they are never seen in the flesh, only in armor. It is implied in some dialogues that their skin molts like a snake's.
  • Long-Lived: While descriptions vary from "men just like those found in Tamriel" to "snake vampires", they are apparently longer lived than that typical men of Tamriel. The two Akaviri Potentates, who ruled Tamriel in a continuation of the Reman Empire early in the 2nd Era, ruled for 323 years and 106 years, respectively.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: They are serpentine for one.
  • Precursors: Their Dragonguard spawned and heavily influenced the Blades.
  • Sapient Eat Sapient: The Tsaesci are said to have "devoured" both the Men of Akavir as well as the Red Dragons sacred to the Ka Po' Tun. Sources conflict as to whether "devour" means that the Tsaesci literally consumed these races, or if it is a colorful term for enslavement and cultural absorption. Unless/until they actually show up in-game, we may never know.
  • Shields Are Useless: Tsaesci have a cultural aversion to shields, and are confused by human warriors who rely on a 'sword-and-board' fighting style. In Tsaesci martial arts, if you don't want your opponent to hit you, you get out of the way.
  • Slave Race: They are known to keep the goblins of Akavir as slaves. They are used for labor, food, and as Cannon Fodder in battle. They also at one point enslaved Akavir's red dragons and possibly the Men of Akavir as well.
  • Snake People: They are supposedly very snake-like, right down to having serpentine lower bodies, but some accounts suggest a more humanoid appearance. In Online, one Tsaesci NPC will comment that their skin molts like that of a reptile, but their are never seen without their full-body armor.
  • Vampires Are Sex Gods: Along with You Sexy Beast. Serpentine or not, they did leave descendants who are considered "beautiful, if frightening". Best not to delve too much into that.
  • Weather Manipulation: Uriel V's invasion of Akavir was absolutely plagued by seemingly supernatural bad weather. The Akaviri winter was far longer and more intense than his intelligence reports indicated it would be. Further, it was plagued by a sudden and mysterious drought. Finally, severe storms along the oceanic supply lines sank many of his ships traveling between Akavir and Tamriel. Magical manipulation by the Tsaesci is speculated to be the cause in all cases.

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