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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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The Elder Scrolls - Tropes G

  • Gaia's Vengeance:
    • Spriggans (a race of hostile tree-like Plant People) are referred to and revered as "Nature's Guardians." They are associated with Kynareth, one of the Nine Divines and goddess of the heavens, winds, and elements. Spriggans tend to live in secluded wilderness areas and will violently attack intruders, often commanding nearby animals to aid them as well. They are mortal enemies of the Hagravens, a flightless harpy Witch Species, who are typically an Enemy to All Living Things.
    • Y'ffre is the Bosmeri god of nature. During the creation of Mundus, Y'ffre brought forth "the Green", essentially bringing nature into existence. The Bosmer are said to be Y'ffre's creation, and he bound them to the "Green Pact", a set of laws which prevent them from harming the plant life within their home forests of Valenwood. Among the Bosmer, failure to adhere to the Green Pact is said to result in being "consigned back into the Ooze".
  • Gaiden Game: In addition to the numbered main series of games, the Elder Scrolls franchise includes a number of other games set in the same universe. To note:
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    • An Elder Scrolls Legend: Battlespire is an action-oriented Dungeon Crawler with downplayed RPG mechanics. Originally planned as an expansion to Daggerfall, it was released as a stand-alone game and takes place during the time frame of Arena. A good chunk of the information of the things known about the Daedra originates in this game.
    • The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard is a spin-off Action-Adventure game with very few RPG elements and is set some 400 years before Arena. The Pocket Guide to the Empire, which came with the game, gave one of the first comprehensive looks at the series' background lore, which would be greatly expanded on in future games.
    • Another The Elder Scrolls Adventures game, The Eye of Argonia was planned but never made, though the Eye itself is mentioned in the main series. (Those who don't know this often erroneously assume that it's a reference to The Eye of Argon.)
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    • The Elder Scrolls Travels is a side-series of small, mobile phone games developed for Java-enabled devices, including the N-Gage. Travels consists of Dawnstar, Stormhold, and Shadowkey, with the canonicity of each unclear at best.
    • The Elder Scrolls Online is an MMORPG prequel of the main series, set roughly 500 years prior the events of Arena.
  • Gambit Pileup: The various faction questlines in the games usually have some of this going on. Most often, it's a corrupt faction leader scheming to achieve (evil or at least amoral) goals at the expense of the faction itself. Often, their plans would have gone off without a hitch if the Player Character hadn't come along to act as a Spanner in the Works. A good rule is that if the faction's leader doesn't seem like a Reasonable Authority Figure, they're probably up to something and one of these is likely to result.
  • The Gambler: Sai, the Deity of Human Origin God of Luck celebrated in the Iliac Bay region, is associated with gambling. Sai was Born Lucky, with the uncanny ability to spread good luck to others but not to himself. After he was killed in battle (while all of his fellow soldiers survived), he was resurrected and granted immortality by Ebonarn, the Iliac Bay War God, so that he may continue to spread his good luck and help to balance the world. "Sai's Disease" is essentially gambling addiction. Those afflicted are driven to incessant gambling, seeking proof of Sai's favor.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: Unfortunately common, in large part due to the sheer scale of the games. Each game in the series has had its fair share of issues when released, but thankfully, most are usually patched fairly quickly. (On PC, modders will usually put out Game Mods as unofficial patches until Bethesda is able to release official ones.) Specific example scan be found on the trope page as well as the individual game pages.
  • Game Engine: The series uses the Gamebryo engine for Morrowind and Oblivion, and then Bethesda's own Creation Engine, which seems to be based on a heavily modified version of Gamebryo for Skyrim.
  • Game-Favored Gender: Generally averted throughout the series, with a minor exception here or there, usually only relating to a single quest. For 99% of the games, the player character's gender makes no difference whatsoever beyond aesthetics.
  • Game Gourmet: Examples found in the series include bread, butter, cheese, ale, carrots, stew, and various kinds of meat. In Morrowind and Oblivion, food (of all kinds) is a type of alchemical ingredient, which can be eaten raw or used to make potions; they have various effects, mostly restoring stamina. In Skyrim, food is different from alchemical ingredients and can have a plethora of effects, from Health Food to "poor man's" potions with various other effects, depending on the item in question.
  • Game Mod: Literally thousands of them are available on the internet. Each PC version of the game comes with a simple-to-learn and very flexible Level Editor, known as the "Construction Set," which can be used to create them. Mods are one of the biggest draws of the series and can increase the content of each game many times over, as well as fix bugs not covered by official patches.
  • Gameplay Ally Immortality: Played with different throughout the series. To note:
    • Played straight in Arena and Daggerfall, where allies important to the storyline are all sprites whose interaction is limited to talking to them — they can't die, but they are also of no help.
    • Morrowind averts it. All NPCs, up to and including physical gods, can be killed if you're strong enough. You do get a warning if a killed NPC was critical to the main plot, but that's it.
    • In Oblivion, plot-important NPCs are marked "essential" and can't die. If their health reaches zero, they only "fall unconscious" for a time, after which they get back up as if nothing happened.
    • Skyrim continues the tradition with two different variants: Essential NPCs can be brought down to a point where they ought to die, but will simply become invulnerable and stand back up a few seconds later. Protected NPCs (such as the player's spouse or followers) go into "submission mode" when their health gets low enough, and whatever enemy was attacking them will stop and move on to attack the player. The player, however, can still kill protected NPCs in submission mode, meaning that the number one cause of death for your followers will probably be your own Friendly Fire.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: In addition to many game-specific examples, the series has a number of recurring examples. To note:
    • Umbra is an evil Empathic Weapon which steals the souls of its victims, including its wielder, whose personality it takes over and compels them to into becoming Blood Knights. However, the player can use it for the entire game after earning it and suffer no ill effects.
    • Moon Sugar and Skooma are highly addictive drugs, but the player can consume them will no negative long term consequences.
    • Proper Lock Design is an in-game book which has appeared several times in the series. It points out that higher-quality locks aren't any good if the chest or door itself is easily broken. Putting this to the test yourself isn't an option; while there are chests and doors placed pre-broken as part of the landscape, you can't ever break one no matter how hard you hit it.
  • Gang Up on the Human: Played with throughout the series. You can find instances of NP Cs and/or creatures attacking one another. Typically, if you stay out of their way, one will kill the other, allowing you to attack the weakened survivor. However, this is far from a guarantee. Venture too close, and it is possible that they'll forget about whatever grudge they had and and attack you.
  • Gargle Blaster: The Bosmer are bound by the Green Pact, an agreement they made with the patron deity of their forest homeland to never harm the plant life within. As a result, the Pact limits their ability to produce alcohol from fruit or grain, so they've invented alternatives. Jagga is fermented pig's milk, similar to real life Mongolian Airag (fermented horse milk). There is also Rotmeth, created from fermented meat rubbed with the organs of Thunderbugs, which takes years to brew. It is an essential drink to have at all Bosmer weddings.
  • Gate of Truth:
    • Hermaeus Mora's plane of Oblivion, Apocrypha, is an infinite library containing all the world's knowledge.
    • The Elder Scrolls themselves are a portable version, being both Tomes of Eldritch Lore and of Prophecy and Fate. They allow one to glimpse the very fabric of reality and decipher knowledge. They come with some rather nasty side effects, however, including blindness and madness.
  • Gender Bender:
    • The Daedric Princes, being technically Otherworldly and Sexually Ambiguous divine spirits, this applies to all of them, and several of them are known to appear as differing genders at different times. Boethiah is the most prominent example, shifting between male and female forms (and voices) from one appearance to the next (including all of the Pronoun Trouble that brings). Others will only present themselves as a single gender (Azura and Nocturnal as female, Mehrunes Dagon, Molag Bal, and Sheogorath as male), and Hermaeus Mora forgoes even trying to resemble anything with a gender (although generally speaks with a male voice).
    • According to some (potentially unreliable) in-universe sources, Argonians are said to be sequential hermaphrodites, meaning they can switch genders. The time spent as either male or female is called a "life-phase".
    • Physical God Vivec claims to be a hermaphrodite. Once of his stories claims that he produced offspring with Molag Bal (the tale of this includes a part where they compare the size of their "spears" and engage in "piercing of the second aperture"). The Dissident Priests explain that Vivec just made most of that stuff up in order to appear more divine than "some guy who stole his godhood while betraying his friend". There are even some holes in his story, such as the aforementioned "having kids with Molag Bal" as Daedra can't create life. However, you can be sent on a quest by Molag Bal himself to banish a daughter of his back to his realm... stories dealing with gods in the Elder Scrolls universe can get very Mind Screwy...
    • The Elder Scrolls Online expansion Summerset reveal that Altmer can use magic to change their sex, with those who feel that they are born in the wrong gender have used either mundane means to look like the gender they feel comfortable with or use magic to completely change their biological sex. Surprisingly, unlike most other races according to an Altmer who used magic to change become female, Altmer are very open minded about these transgender and genderqueer individuals.
  • Gendered Outfit: Averted initially in the series. Prior Morrowind's Tribunal expansion, items of clothing and pieces of armor looked the same whether they were equipped on a male or a female character. Tribunal changes the model of certain armor cuirasses in Morrowind to be more fore fitting. Oblivion has this by default for the majority of cuirasses, and adds the effect to many clothing items as well. For example, you can loot the pair of pants a male character is wearing and equip them on your female character. Inexplicably, they'll now appear as a skirt. Skyrim largely follows suit.
  • Gender Equals Breed: As the series' averts All Genes Are Codominant, offspring produced by members of two different races are Uneven Hybrids with the race of the offspring usually being virtually identical to the mother, with a few of the father's traits potentially sprinkled in. The Argonians are the only race not to share evolutionary origins with the others and are mutually infertile with everyone except each other, while Khajiit may be able to interbreed, but to date, there are no canonical examples.
  • Gender Is No Object: Ranges from being downplayed to being played straight depending on the specific game, but it is always present. The early games in the series have purely male generic guards, soldiers, bandits, etc. but named characters in these roles can be of either gender. Later games in the series have introduced more women in these roles. It seems that in Tamriel, there's nothing stopping women from signing up, but they just don't join up as often. The deep backstory is also chock full of notable female monarchs, faction leaders, and great heroes.
  • Generation Xerox: M'aiq the Lair, a recurring Easter Egg Legacy Character who has appeared in every game since Morrowind. According to the dialogue of the M'aiq in Skyrim, they are all related. Each has the same traits of being a Meta Guy Author Avatar Fourth-Wall Observer (and Leaner and sometimes Breaker) who is fond of deadpan sarcasm, are untrustworthy, and who seems very detached from the game world. Based on the appearance of a M'aiq in the prequel The Elder Scrolls Online, which takes place in the mid 2nd Era, they've been at this for centuries.
    M'aiq: "M'aiq's father was also called M'aiq. As was M'aiq's father's father. At least, that's what his father said."
  • Generic Ethnic Crime Gang: The Camonna Tong are a native Dunmeri (Dark Elven) crime syndicate fiercely opposed to any foreign presence in Morrowind. They're involved in all manner of Mafia-esque illegal activities, including smuggling, drug running, "protection" rackets, bribery, and won't hesitate for a second to resort to violence if other methods fail. They're also one of the driving forces of Morrowind's (technically legal but frowned upon by the Empire) slave trade. Online reveals that they've been active since at least the 2nd Era, and they were known to still be active as of the Oblivion Crisis.
  • Genius Bruiser:
  • Genius Loci:
    • According to some interpretations, this is the case for the Daedric Princes. Their planes of Oblivion are the Princes, with the (mostly) humanoid forms they take when dealing with mortals being the personification of that realm of Oblivion. This is further supported by the events of Online's main quest, where the Vestige and their allies can invade Coldharbour, while Meridia works to keep Molag Bal from becoming aware of this in the same way a disease infiltrates and incubates inside of a living body.
    • As explained under Alien Sky, A Form You Are Comfortable With, and You Cannot Grasp the True Form, this may be the case for the Aedra and Lorkhan as well. The eight planets from Nirn are theorized to be the physical forms of the original Eight Divines, while the twin moons are the rotting and sundered "flesh divinity" (body, essentially) of the "dead" god Lorkhan.
  • Genocide Backfire: In the late Merethic Era, the Atmorans, a barbarian Precursor race of the Nords, began migrating to Tamriel from the now-lost continent of Atmora, landing and settling in modern day Skyrim. The Falmer (Snow Elves), who inhabited Skyrim, grew concerned when they started to become outnumbered by the Atmorans. While there are conflicting details regarding exactly what happened that night, the Falmer would attack and massacre the Atmoran city of Saarthal. Unfortunately, Ysgramor and his sons survived. They returned to Atmora and raised an army of 500 of Atmora's greatest warriors. They returned to Skyrim and led a Purge on the Falmer, slaughtering the majority of their population. Save for a small population at a very remote monastery, the surviving Falmer were forced to turn to their Dwemer cousins for shelter. The Dwemer agreed to take them in, but only if the Falmer agreed to consume poisonous mushrooms to permanently blind them and essentially become Enslaved Elves to the Dwemer. Following the disappearance of the Dwemer, the surviving modern Falmer are now barely sapient Morlock-like creatures who continue to inhabit the Dwemer's abandoned ruins. However, by the 4th Era, the Falmer are growing more bold, venturing above ground to kidnap surface dwellers while their numbers swell beneath ground. They also seem to be regaining some of their lost sentience, forging better weapons and armor from farmed Chaurus chitin and practicing crude alchemy to create poisons from the plentiful mushrooms that grow in their underground lairs. The author of one in-game book in Skyrim even believes that the Falmer may be preparing to wage war on their surface dwelling ancestral enemies, crossing over with elements of Create Your Own Villain and Laser-Guided Karma for the Nords.
  • Gentle Giant: The series has a race of Giants who generally play this trope straight. Giants typically 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. That said, they do provide aversions in the form of Offscreen Villainy. Giants are known to raid farms, steal livestock, and attack settlements. However, outside of a few exceptions with justifications, Giants have not been seen attacking unprovoked in-game. Additionally, there are mentions of Giants attacking and even forming armies in the backstory. The ancient Giant Clan led by Sinmur the Terrible is one such example. 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.
  • Gentleman Thief: Throughout the series, when playing the Thieves' Guild quest line, it is often encouraged for the Player Character to be one. The Guild is generally violence averse, and several of the games offer greater rewards when Thieves Guild quests are completed without bloodshed, encouraging Actual Pacifism. Doing so while dressed in fancy clothes is totally optional as well.
  • Genuine Human Hide:
    • The in-game book Confessions of a Khajiit Fur Trader is exactly what it says on the cover: The tale of a Khajiit who made an absolute fortune selling the pelts of his kind, as well as Argonian leather. It all began with his brother's hide and went downhill from there.
    • The Oghma Infinium is an artifact of Hermaeus Mora, the Daedric Prince of Knowledge. It contains immense forbidden knowledge and is bound in mortal hides.
  • Geometric Magic:
    • The Order of the Black Worm is a secretive Magical Society led by infamous/legendary necromancer Mannimarco and dedicated to the study of The Dark Arts. A black pentagram is a common symbol of the Order, representing the "damnation of their souls". Members are forced to get one tattooed onto their bodies.
    • A common term in some of the deeper and more esoteric lore also refers to the concept of mythitecture: the way that many major structures — the Imperial City, the continent of Tamriel, the planets themselves — mirror and reinforce the metaphysical nature of the universe. Most commonly, as in the case of the Imperial City, that is the visualization of the Aurbic Wheel, which consists of a hub or axle (White-Gold Tower) surrounded by eight spokes (the eight districts of the city, counting the Arcane University and Imperial City Prison).
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    • Coming at a time when PC games were not subject to much censorship at all, Arena and Daggerfall have a lot of "crap" right out in the open. Included are soft nudity, a graphically detailed sex scene in a book, blackmailing a noble by threatening to reveal his Brother–Sister Incest, killing children, and more.
    • Later games in the series, being very much subject to censorship and ratings, have had to be more creative with this trope. Examples include the 36 Lessons of Vivec series including a thiny veiled gay sex scene, The Lusty Argonian Maid series being a lightly pornographic tale of Interspecies Romance, hints at necrophilia, "worshipers" of Dibella essentially being thinly veiled prostitutes and dominatrices, and more.
  • Ghetto Name: The Redguards (Tamriel's dark-skinned human race) get some of these throughout the series, with exactly how many varying from game to game. By the time of Skyrim, this has been dropped almost completely in favor of giving them Arabic-sounding names instead. (Justified, as the medieval Middle East and North Africa are a large part of the Redguard Culture Chop Suey.)
  • Ghibli Hills: Tamriel's unsettled areas are quite beautiful indeed, though are often still crawling with all sorts of hostile wildlife (and worse), so travel carefully.
  • The Ghost:
    • Several races are mentioned in the series' backstory and lore but have not yet been seen in-game in the main series. These include the Imga (intelligent ape men) of Valenwood, all of the races of Akavir (the Tsaesci, the Ka Po' Tun, the Tang Mo, and the Kamal) as well as the Maormer (Sea Elves), though they do finally make an appearance in Online. Likewise, the Sload (slug-men) of Thras have so far only appeared in the Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard spin-off game but are still mentioned in the other games.
    • While the Khajiit are known to have at least 17 distinct sub-species, only two have actually been seen in the main series games to date - the Ohmes/Ohmes-raht (Arena and Daggerfall) and Suthay/Suthay-raht (Morrowind, Oblivion, Skyrim, Online). However, the Legends digital card battle game shows the Cathay-raht ("Jaguar Men"), Dagi-raht (a smaller sub-breed with an affinity for climbing trees and using magic), and Pahmar-raht ("Tiger Men" and the largest bi-pedal sub-species).
    • The Ideal Masters are immortal beings who were once powerful mortal sorcerers during the Merethic Era. After finding their mortal forms to be too weak and limiting, they entered Oblivion as beings of pure energy and settled an area of "chaotic creatia", forming the Soul Cairn. The Ideal Masters have never actually been seen, though they will use gem forms to communicate with mortals (as well as capture their souls).
    • Tiber Septim, the founder of the Third Tamriellic Empire who ascended after his death as Talos, the Ninth Divine, is an extremely influential Posthumous Character in the series. Even in the only game which takes place during his lifetime, the spin-off game Redguard, he does not make an appearance.
  • Ghostly Chill:
    • Played straight in that numerous characters throughout the series, including the Player Character in some instances, mention a "chill" whenever they're dealing with something spiritual.
    • Inverted when it comes to spirits who are summoned to the mortal world. According to multiple sources, including the in-game book "Ancestors and the Dunmer," spirits who are summoned to the mortal world feel it to be "cold, bitter, and full of pain."
  • Ghostly Goals: The recurring series' character, St. Jiub the Eradicator, can be met as a spirit in the Soul Cairn in Skyrim's Dawnguard DLC and is very much a Type A. He offers a sidequest which involves recovering the lost notes he needs to write his opus, telling the tale of his rise and atonement from being a prisoner at the beginning of Morrowind to earning his status as a saint. Once finished, he'll ask you take it back to the mortal world so his legend may live on.
  • Ghost Memory:
    • The extinct Dwemer counted among their many technological achievements a machine which could safely read an Elder Scroll and imprint the information gained from it on a special cube where it could be more-safely accessed. ("More-safely" is a relative term, as the cubes have still been known to drive non-Dwemer mad.)
    • The extinct Ayleids had memory crystals which could store memories and release them to the user. Overuse of these crystals was said to cause a "problem of capacity" for mortal minds.
    • The ancient Yokudans, ancestors of the Redguards, had memory-stones which enabled those who used them to master complex sword techniques overnight, although the user needed to have some knowledge already to understand what was being taught and many of the maneuvers required extensive physical training to actually use them in battle.
  • Ghost Ship: There is the legend of the Crimson Ship. During the 2nd Era, the Knahaten Flu ravaged Tamriel, with the Kothringi (a tribal race of silver-skinned menfolk native to the Black Marsh) being among the hardest hit. Despite their primitive culture, they were skilled sailors, so a small group of their people boarded the Crimson Ship and sailed away from the Black Marsh to find refuge. They were denied by almost every other nation in Tamriel. Hammerfell, home of the Redguards in western Tamriel, was the last to deny them shelter. With no other choice, the Crimson Ship sailed west into the open ocean. According to Redguard legend, sailors later supposedly found the ship with all aboard having died. Every year, they memorialize this as the "Day of Shame", in which no Redguards leave their homes, believing that the Crimson Ship will return to take revenge. (According to other sources, the Crimson Ship was never seen again after it sailed west, and none who have seen it have ever returned alive.)
  • Giant Corpse World:
    • The series has the twin moons Masser and Secunda. They are not typical sub-planetoids, but are in fact said to be the decaying remains ("flesh divinity") of the long-"dead" creator god, Lorkhan, symbolizing how he was sundered during the creation of Mundus, the mortal plane. They, like the rest of the cosmos in the Elder Scrolls series, are implied to look like as they do because it is the best mortal minds can do to interpret it. The two moons go through technically impossible phases; stars are visible behind the dark parts when they're not full, and they are unaffected by the series' occasional Reality Warping Time Crashes, which allow their cycles to be used to determine the passage of time when linear time is otherwise not applying.
    • The Daedric Planes of Oblivion are the realms of the Daedric Princes, which are theorized to also be part of their very beings. When a Prince is weakened through one means or another, it is said that his Daedric Plane literally shrinks. According to Oblivion's main villain, Mankar Camoran, Mundus (the mortal realm) itself was originally the Daedric realm of the aforementioned "dead" god, Lorkhan. Very few other sources agree with Camoran, but he does offer a few valid points supporting his theory, such as Lorkhan being a being of chaos like the Daedra rather than a being of order, like the Aedra (who he convinced/tricked into creating Mundus).
  • Giant Enemy Crab:
    • Mud Crabs are a common giant crab species frequently found near water all across Tamriel. Most are roughly the size of a large tortoise and aren't threatening in the least, being just a step above the series' Rodents of Unusual Size for low-level critter enemies.
    • Historically, there were the "Emperor Crabs," whose shells are used as houses by the Dunmer in Morrowind. (Emperor Crabs are, unfortunately, stated to be extinct.) The shell of the largest of them, known as Skar, is large enough to house an entire city district.
  • Giant Flyer:
    • The series' dragons, naturally, are this.
    • The series' lore tells of werevultures native to the forests of Valenwood, a form of were-creature who transform into giant carrion birds. They've yet to make an in-game appearance, however.
  • Giant Mook:
    • Enemies larger than even the biggest of the playable races are encountered all over Tamriel. They range from actual Giants, to "creatures" like Ogres and Minotaurs, to Dwemer creations such as Steam Centurions, to several forms of lesser Daedra including Frost and Storm Atronachs, Xivilai, Ogrim, and many others.
    • In the backstory, there once existed a race of giant Goblins native to the Alik'r Desert in Hammerfell. Typical Goblins are more Mook like, standing 3-5 feet tall and are usually only threatening in overwhelming numbers. The giant Goblins stood over 8 feet tall and, while they were eventually exterminated, managed to kill the ancient Redguard hero Frandar Hunding in battle.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: A few of these are sprinkled throughout the series, including Karstaag in Bloodmoon and twin dragons Voslaarum and Naaslaarum in Dawnguard. Details are available on the trope page.
  • Giant Spider:
  • Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death!: St. Alessia, the "Slave Queen", led a uprising of Cyrodiil's native human population against their Ayleid masters, who had dominated Cyrodiil since time immemorial, for the freedom of the enslaved humans they kept. After risking her life to escape slavery herself, she would ally with the Nordic Empire, rebel Ayleid lords, and even the gods themselves to defeat the Ayleids.
  • Give Me Your Inventory Item: The series has a tradition of highwaymen and other similar thuggish characters doing this to a traveling player character. Refuse, and they will try to kill you. Yes, even if you're a god-slaying hero.
  • Gladiator Games:
    • Morrowind and Oblivion both include gladiatorial arenas where you can engage in these. (Though in Morrowind, the battles tend to be honorable duels instead of for sport.)
    • On a meta level, the series was originally intended to feature these. Arena is so called because it was originally intended to be a game about teams of gladiators battling it out. This would be dropped during development in favor of adapting Tamriel, the developers' home-brew D&D setting, into a video game. As promotional material had already been created, Arena stuck as the title.
  • Gladiator Subquest: Morrowind and Oblivion both offer these, mostly in faction questlines (Morrowind) and as it's own faction (Oblivion).
  • Glamour Failure: For many of Tamriel's vampire bloodlines, the longer they go without feeding, the more monstrous in appearance they become. Eventually, they will no longer be able to pass as mortal and risk being attacked on sight. (Others are monstrous and risk attack regardless of how often they feed.) Series' lore tells of the Bonsamu bloodline of Valenwood, who are completely indistinguishable from mortals unless seen in the light of a candle.
  • Glass Weapon: "Glass" is one of the series' Fantasy Metals and is an iridescent green in color. Similar to obsidian, it can be mined directly (mostly from around the Red Mountain volcano in Morrowind). It can also be smelted artificially by by combining refined moonstone and refined malachite... though admittedly they aren't exactly glass, per se. While the game refers to them as glass, they're actually malachite (not to be confused real malachite). In every game since Morrowind, Glass weapons are a highly quality weapon type available in everything from swords, to axes, to bows, and even maces (in addition to being crafted into high quality light armor).
  • Global Currency:
    • Throughout the series, "Septims" are the official currency of Tamriel. Named for the ruling Septim dynasty of the Third Tamriellic Empire (Justifying the trope), Septims are gold coins depicting Tiber Septim, founder of the Third Empire on the heads side and the Imperial Dragon symbol on the tails side (which gives them their slang name of "drakes").
    • It's not explained how coins found in ancient ruins that predate the Septim dynasty are usable in trade as though they are Septims themselves, though it is likely just a simplification; presumably, any such coins are valued to the Septim and traded accordingly.
  • Glory Seeker: Naturally, given that Nirn is a World of Badass, many warriors are these, bordering on being Blood Knights in many cases. This also applies to a number of scholars and mages, seeking glory in their scientific and magical studies.
  • Glowing Eyes: Glowing golden eyes are a trait of Vampires. It's implied that this is a trait which is Invisible to Normals, and can only be seen by certain other supernatural beings (such as the Dragonborn of Skyrim, who has a draconic Aedric soul). Depending on the morality of the vampire in question, this can cross over with Glowing Eyes of Doom.
  • Glowing Flora:
    • Glowing mushrooms are a common sight in many games in the series.
    • Nirnroot is plant that both glows and makes sound. It is cherished for its alchemical properties.
  • God Couple:
    • In the series' mythology, the "dead" creator god, Lorkhan, was a couple with the Divines Kynareth and/or Mara depending on the religion. Sometimes both. This is most prominent in their old Nordic aspects as Shor and Kyne. Shor was a "bloodthirsty warrior king" (which was considered a good thing to the Proud Warrior Race Nords) and Kyne was his warrior-wife shield maiden.
    • Mara also gets paired with Akatosh/Auri-El and, in the Yokudan/Redguard tradition, Ruptga. In some tellings, Mara is the concubine to one of them instead.
    • Sithis, referred to as a "great void", is a force representing chaos, change, and limitation. He is coupled with the Night Mother in the religion of the Dark Brotherhood. There is evidence that the Night Mother may be an aspect of the Daedric Prince Mephala, who has strong connections to Sithis in the religion of the Dunmer. (The Morag Tong, off of whom the Brotherhood originally split, has Mephala as a patron deity while also having special reverence for Sithis.)
    • Almalexia spent time coupled with each of her fellow Physical God members of the Tribunal. Neither coupling lasted all that long (at least, on the godly scale of time), with her relationship with Sotha Sil lasting slightly longer (though more intermittent due to his Mad Scientist nature). Almalexia did a lot of coupling, but considered Nerevar to be her lover long after his death. And Nerevar/Almalexia were a political God Couple while they were still mortal.
  • God-Emperor:
    • Tiber Septim, the founder of the Third Cyrodiilic Empire, achieved apotheosis after his death and is worshiped as Talos, one of the Nine Divines. He has an especially strong following in the Imperial Legion. Exactly how he accomplished this is hotly debated, with the most prominent theories involving Merger of Souls and Becoming the Mask scenarios.
    • While Talos is the most prominent of the post-death apotheosized Men, at least two other rulers are said to have achieved apotheosis as well: Cuhlecain, Septim's predecessor (Tiber was his general, and took over and continued the work when Cuhlecain was assassinated) with 'the Cult of Emperor Zero' and Reman Cyrodiil, founder of the Second Empire (also known as the Worldly God and the Light of Man).
    • For some 4000 years, the Dunmer worshiped the Tribunal, a trio of living, flesh and blood gods (who are really elves who obtained divinity via an Artifact of Doom). In the modern day they exert great influence, but aren't officially the government and their powers have waned greatly; rather, there's a separate King of Morrowind, who reports to the Emperor. But before Dagoth Ur's return and the Imperial conquest of Morrowind, they really did fit this trope.
    • Among the Akaviri race of the Ka Po' Tun "tiger folk," their leader, Tosh Raka, has become one. He has supposedly achieved the race's goal of becoming dragons, being the largest dragon in the world with orange and black colored scales. (Other sources claim that this story is metaphorical at best.)
  • God in Human Form:
    • Throughout the series and backstory, a number of the Daedric Princes have taken physical forms on Mundus. Due to the metaphysical laws of Mundus (put into place during St. Alessia's covenant with Akatosh), the power of the Daedra is severely restricted there, leading to them being much less powerful there outside of certain specific circumstances. Sometimes, the Princes do not try to hide who they are, while at other times, they prefer an incognito approach.
    • Similarly, some of the Aedra have been known to do this as well. When they do so, they almost exclusively do so incognito. Talos in particular is believed to have done this a number of times, appearing to the Nerevarine as Wulf, to the Champion of Cyrodiil as the Prophet, and being the "mysterious friend" who sent letters with the locations of Word of Power to the Last Dragonborn.
    • The creator god Lorkhan (known by many names) was "killed" for his perceived treachery by the Aedra, who he convinced/tricked (depending on the storyteller) into creating Mundus, the mortal plane. They cut his heart from his body and cast it down into the world he helped to create, where his spirit is forced to wander. At a few points in history, his spirit manifested in a physical form, known as "Shezarrines" (after Lorkhan's Imperial name, Shezarr). They most often appear in times of great peril for mankind, aiding mankind by, most often, killing lots and lots of Mer. Some of the most famous include Hans the Fox (who was one of Ysgramor's 500 companions), Wulfharth Ash-King, and Pelinal Whitestrake.
    • The HoonDing, the Yokudan/Redguard spirit of perseverance and "Make Way God", manifests itself using mortal avatars. According to some interpretations, these avatars aren't necessarily the HoonDing itself, but the HoonDing taking over and/or working through the avatar. To note:
      • Frandar Hunding was one form. Hunding led an army of "sword singers" to victory over Emperor Hira of Yokuda. He later led the Redguard people to Hammerfell and "cleansed" it of hostile threats in order to make it safe for Redguard habitation.
      • Diagna, "God of the Sideways Blade," was another. Diagna defeated the Left Handed Elves of Yokuda and later, defeated the Orcs of Orsinium at the height of its ancient power.
      • Cyrus the Restless, hero of the The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard spin-off game, was the most recent. Through the events of that game, Cyrus forced the Septim Empire into a treaty with better terms for Hammerfell while freeing the island of Stros M'Kai from its corrupt Imperial governor and the threat of a Sload necromancer.
    • The Redguards also believe that Orgnum, King of the Maormer (Sea Elves), said to be an "immortal wizard", is an incarnation of Satakal, the serpentine god who is the fusion of the concepts of Anu and Padomay in their religion.
    • Magnus, the God of Magic who served as the architect for Mundus but abandoned it part way through creation, is said to inhabit the bodies of powerful mages and lend them his power.
    • Those who are "Dragonborn" are rare mortals gifted with the immortal Aedric souls of dragons, a gift granted by Akatosh himself. (According to the theory that all dragons are aspects of Akatosh's very being, this would make those who are Dragonborn aspects of Akatosh himself as well.) In addition to an inherent understanding of ability to use the Thu'um, they are also the only mortals capable of truly killing a dragon, not only slaying its physical form (which any mortal with enough skill can do) but absorbing its soul, preventing it from every being resurrected.
  • God Is Dead:
    • The creator god Lorkhan (aka Shor, Shezzar, Sep, Lorkhaj...). Though there are many different creation stories, his inclusion is one of the few consistent elements. He is generally better regarded by the races of men than by the Mer races, who view him as a trickster. (The Altmer have a particular dislike for him.) After he convinced the et'Ada who would become the Aedra to create Mundus (the mortal realm), sacrificing much of their divine power (including their Complete Immortality) in the process, he was "killed" and his "divine center" (heart) removed. It was tied to an arrow and launched across Tamriel by Auri-El, one of those et'Ada, where it landed in modern day Morrowind and formed Red Mountain. The moons are said to be his rotting corpse and his spirit was forced to wander Mundus, occasionally taking form as a "Shezzarine," great champions of mankind.
    • The majority of the Aedra invested so much of their essence into the Mundus that they became mortal and died. Earthbones, the laws of reality which bind mortals, are magical restraints created from their deaths. In all, only eight remain alive and they're halfway to dead themselves, leading to God Is Inept and Have You Seen My God? type issues.
  • God Is Evil: The series has several types of deity, which play with this trope in different ways. To note:
    • Lorkhan, the creator deity who tricked/convinced some of his fellow et'Ada ("original spirits") to create Mundus, the mortal plane, is viewed as a malevolent entity by most of the races of Mer. They consider creation a malevolent act which robbed the pre-creation spirits of their divinity and forced them into the prison of the mortal world where they experience death and suffering. (The races of Men, on the other hand, generally see Lorkhan as benevolent entity who freed the pre-creation spirits from a prison of unchanging stasis.)
    • Those et'Ada who aided Lorkhan in creating Mundus would become known as the Aedra ("Our Ancestors" in Old Aldmeris). Due to being severely weakened by the act of creation, they rarely influence mortal affairs directly. They tend to be worshiped by mortals, both Men and Mer, for their contribution as the "Divines" and are mostly believed to be benevolent. One possible exception, depending on the interpretation, is Akatosh, the draconic God of Time and Top God of the Nine Divines pantheon. According to one prominent theory, the dragons, including Alduin, are fragments of his being. Dragons are beings of destruction and domination, with Alduin having the responsibility of "eating the world" at the end of every "kalpa", or cycle of time.
    • The et'Ada who did not aid Lorkhan are known as the Daedra ("Not Our Ancestors"). Of them, the 17 most powerful are known as the Daedric Princes. Each has a particular sphere, which the are said to govern from their planes of Oblivion (the infinite void around Mundus) which they inhabit and rule. Though most are considered "evil," scholars are quick to point out that they are really beings Above Good and Evil who operate on their own Blue and Orange Morality. The "Good" ones only seem that way because what they seek to accomplish is generally beneficial or benevolent toward mortals, while the "Evil" ones are more likely to harm mortals with their actions. For instance, Mehrunes Dagon is the Daedric Prince of Destruction, but can be considered no more "evil" than a tidal wave or an earthquake.
  • God Is Good:
    • Lorkhan, the creator deity who tricked/convinced some of his fellow et'Ada ("original spirits") to create Mundus, the mortal plane, is viewed as a benevolent entity by most of the races of Men. They consider creation a benevolent act which freed the pre-creation spirits from a "prison" of unchanging stasis and allows them an opportunity for greater transcendence as a "testing ground" of the spirit. (The races of Mer (Elves), on the other hand, generally see Lorkhan as a malevolent entity who robbed the pre-creation spirits of their divinity and forced them into the prison of the mortal world where they experience death and suffering.
    • The et'Ada who aided Lorkhan in creating Mundus would become known as the Aedra ("Our Ancestors" in Old Aldmeris). Due to being severely weakened by the act of creation, they rarely influence mortal affairs directly. They tend to be worshiped by mortals, both Men and Mer, for their contribution as the "Divines" and are mostly believed to be benevolent.
      • Of the Aedra, Akatosh, the draconic God of Time and chief deity of the Nine Divines pantheon, is seen as wholly good by almost every race which acknowledges him. The exceptions are the Argonians, who lack the usual concept of "time" with no tense verbs and "live in the now", and the Dunmer (Dark Elves), whose traditional religion considers the Aedra to be "false gods" and who have passed many of Akatosh's aspects (particularly those of being a progenitor and parental figure) on to the Tribunal deity Almalexia, instead.
  • God Is Inept:
    • This is the opinion of most of the races of Mer, especially the Altmer, toward Lorkhan. Lorkhan is one of the et'Ada ("original spirits") who tricked/convinced some of the other et'Ada (who would become known as the Aedra) into sacrificing large portions of their power to create Mundus, the mortal plane. The races of Mer generally see this as an act of malevolence which robbed the pre-creation spirits of their divinity and forced them to experience mortal loss and suffering. The Altmer think of him as a "limit", and by "tricking" the Aedra into sacrificing large portions of their power to create Mundus, he imposed a limit upon them as well.
    • Due to their sacrifices during creation, the Aedra have been left significantly weakened and no longer possess Complete Immortality. While they are still recognized and often worshiped throughout Tamriel, many, especially Daedra worshipers, consider them either inept, lazy, nonexistent, or some combination thereof. The Aedra prefer a lighter touch when influencing mortal affairs, at most acting through mortal agents. The rare instances in which they have intervened directly have typically been as the last resort to stave off The End of the World as We Know It.
      • In Khajiiti religious tradition, S'rendarr (the Khajiiti aspect of Stendarr, the Aedric God of Mercy and Justice), gets hit with this. To them, he is a "runt" and "the weakest child" of Anhurr (Anu) and Fadomai (Padomay). Khajiiti culture teaches Combat Pragmatism and has no word for "rules", so it makes sense that they would see a god of mercy and justice as weak.
  • God Job:
    • The Tribunal of Morrowind tapped into the power of the Heart of Lorkhan to achieve divinity, as did their mortal enemy (and former friend) Dagoth Ur.
    • Tiber Septim, founder of the Third Empire of Tamriel, ascended to godhood (possibly with others) as Talos, the Ninth Divine, upon the death of his mortal form. Exactly how this occurred has been debated by lore scholars (in-universe and out) ever since.
    • Following the splitting of Jyggalag and Sheogorath during the Greymarch at the end of the 3rd Era, the mantle of Sheogorath was inherited by the formerly mortal Champion of Cyrodiil.
  • God of Chaos: The Daedric Princes are generally considered Chaos Gods (in opposition to the more ordered Aedric deities) (with the notable exception of Jyggalag, who claims Order as his sphere of influence despite being a Daedra). The Daedra who most strongly embody Chaos include Mehrunes Dagon Prince of Destruction, Revolution, and Change, Sheogorath Prince of Madness and Creativity, and Boethiah Prince of Deceit, Conspiracy, Treachery, and Sedition.
  • God of Evil: The series' mythology contains many deities, some more benevolent while others are more malevolent. Even the worst of these deities tend to act within the Blue and Orange Morality of the spheres over which they govern, but several stand out as almost irredeemably "evil". To note:
    • Mehrunes Dagon, the Daedric Prince of Destruction, often gets this label in-universe (due to his actions typically resulting the death or ruin of many mortals) and incorrectly by the series' fandom. It is an easy mistake to make given that Dagon has served as the Big Bad or Greater-Scope Villain of several games in the series. However, Dagon ultimately subverts the trope. While he is highly destructive, he cannot be considered any more truly "evil" than a destructive act of nature like a flood or an earthquake. Dagon also has several redeeming qualities within his sphere, such as governing over Change, which a functioning world requires to exist. (If the old is never "destroyed", there can be no room for anything new.)
    • Molag Bal, the Daedric Prince of Domination and Corruption, and the "King of Rape", deservedly gets this label. Most of the Daedra are Jerkass Gods to some degree or another, but still have redeeming qualities, even Mehrunes Dagon. Not Molag Bal. He is a being pure malevolence with no redeeming qualities whatsoever. He basically is The Devil to the Dunmer, as they see him as the creator of obstacles trying to threaten the "purity" of the Great Houses. He is not much better regarded by any other race on Tamriel either.
    • Sithis, referred to as a "great void", is a force representing chaos, change, and limitation. Sithis may be one by default, as Sithis is said to be an equal but opposite force to Anui-El, the "soul of all things". Sithis is essentially the antithesis of all things. Sithis Is Not.
    • Mannimarco, the God of Worms, is the ascended god form of Mannimarco, the King of Worms. Mannimarco is the infamous and highly dreaded Lich/Necromancer who has terrorized Tamriel since the early 2nd Era, all as part of his quest to become a god. Following a failed attempt during the events of Online, he succeeds as a result of the Warp in the West at the end of Daggerfall...sort of. The Reality Warping Warp in the West merged Daggerfall's numerous Multiple Endings, but none occurred to the same extent they would have individually. As such, he did ascend to a form of godhood as the God of Worms, but it is in a rather minor station. It also seems to have created another version of him which did not ascend, remaining on Tamriel as a Lich who leads a cult which worships the God of Worms, who seems to be treated as a different entity.
  • The Gods Must Be Lazy:
    • Played straight but arguably Justified with the Nine Divines (Aedra). Due to their sacrifices during creation, the Aedra have been left significantly weakened and no longer possess Complete Immortality. While they are still recognized and often worshiped throughout Tamriel, many, especially Daedra worshipers, consider them either inept, lazy, nonexistent, or some combination thereof. The Aedra prefer a lighter touch when influencing mortal affairs, at most acting through mortal agents. The rare instances in which they have intervened directly have typically been as the last resort to stave off The End of the World as We Know It.
    • Averted by the Daedra, who did not sacrifice any power in the creation of the world and are truly immortal. They will exist for the whole of time, and things like having their physical manifestation slain or bound into a weapon are only temporary setbacks. Because of this, they are much more open in their communication with mortals and direct in acting within the mortal world, though still usually require the aid of mortals to get there, but for a different reason than the Aedra - metaphysical barriers prevent them from setting foot on Mundus at full power unless they've been specially ritually summoned, they take a much-weaker mortal avatar form, or some other specific circumstance.
    • Averted by the Dunmeri Tribunal who, at least until they were cut off from recharging their power, regularly lived and worked among their people, offering guidance and performing miracles. They actively defended Morrowind from multiple takeover attempts by the Empire, the Akaviri, and various Daedric forces.
  • Gods Need Prayer Badly:
    • It is repeatedly implied that a deity becomes more powerful as they gain mortal worshipers. According to one theory, the Aedric Divines are technically dead, having sacrificed much of their power during the creation of Mundus, the mortal plane. Now, they "dream they are alive" through mortal prayer and worship. The deities who did not participate in the creation of Mundus, the Daedra, have Complete Immortality as they did not sacrifice any of their power to create the world, and can exist independent from prayer and worship. (Though they do seem to enjoy receiving it and may still gain power from it.) Other lesser deities can be outright killed by lack of worship. The reason it's easier for greater deities (Aedra and Daedra) is because they personify widely-known abstracts, so even if all their followers in one culture are purged, they have another culture to pick up the slack.
    • This is one of the motivations behind the Thalmor outlawing Talos worship. The stated reason for this is that the Thalmor refuse to accept that a human could achieve godhood, although it is suggested that destroying Talos by depriving him of worship is one stage in the Thalmor's grand plan to destroy Mundus and Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence.
    • Played Straight for the Tribunal after their connection to the Heart of Lorkhan was severed. According to Vivec, the faith of their followers allows them to exist with a trace of their divinity in tact. Even before their connection was severed, Vivec intentionally set this up when he froze a rogue moon (hurled by Sheogorath) above his new city. He stated that it is held in place by the faith of his followers, and if that faith should wane, it would fall. (Guess what happens when he disappears early in the 4th Era?)
  • God Was My Copilot:
    • In the primary Creation Myth, Lorkhan, one of the et'Ada ("original spirits"), convinced/tricked some of the other et'Ada into sacrificing a large portion of their power to create Mundus, the mortal plane. For this perceived treachery, these other et'Ada (now known as the Aedra, "Our Ancestors" in Old Aldmeris), punished Lorkhan by "killing" him, cutting his divine center ("heart") from his body, and casting it down into the world he helped to create where his spirit would be forced to wander. At several points in the series' backstory, his spirit has manifested in physical forms known as "Shezarrines", after Lorkhan's Imperial name of "Shezarr". These Shezarrines most often appear in times of great peril for mankind, aiding mankind by, most often, killing lots and lots of Mer (Elves). Some of the most famous Shezarrines include: Hans the Fox, who aided Ysgramor as one of his 500 Companions in order to conquer Skyrim from the Falmer (Snow Elves). Pelinal Whitestrake, who served as a champion to St. Alessia in her war to free mankind from the slavery of the Ayleids (Wild Elves). And Wulfharth Ash-King, an Eternal Hero and king of the Nords who battled many groups of Mer and would later come into the service of Tiber Septim (possibly ascending with him in a Merger of Souls scenario to become the deity Talos).
    • Talos himself has pulled this with the Player Character in several games in the series, appearing as Wulf in Morrowind, the Prophet in Knights of the Nine, and is theorized to be the mysterious "friend" who sends you anonymous letters revealing the locations of Word Walls in Skyrim. There is a reason it is said that Talos is the most active Divine by the 4th Era...
  • Godzilla Threshold:
    • The Aedra, the et'Ada ("original spirits") who sacrificed much of their divine power during the creation of Mundus, the mortal plane, typically reserve direct Divine Intervention for only the most dire of situations, such as averting The End of the World as We Know It. They prefer a much lighter touch in mortal affairs otherwise, at most typically working through a mortal agent. Because of this, many in Tamriel openly question their existence while considering them inept and/or lazy.
      • A prominent example of what happens when the Divines get more aggressive is Pelinal Whitestrake, an Aedric being sent as an answered prayer by the Divines to Alessia, the "Slave Queen" attempting to liberate her Nedic (ancestors of Men) people from the cruel tyranny of the (primarly) Daedra-worshiping Ayleids. Pelinal was The Berserker with an extreme hatred of all elves and a habit of slaughtering entire kingdoms. The Divines were so horrified by his actions that they nearly left the mortal world altogether, only remaining after Alessia appeased them with prayer and sacrifices. Pelinal would be the last (known) direct divine agent to act in Mundus, and since, have only acted through mortal agents with divine blessings, like the Dragonborn, instead of direct intervention.
      • There are very rare moments where the Divines fully intervene in events within Mundus, usually in response to an attack by one of the Daedric Princes. The most notable example is against Mehrunes Dagon during the Oblivion Crisis, where Akatosh manifested an avatar when Martin Septim sacrificed himself, and defeated Mehunres Dagon's avatar. The result of that battle was that there were no longer any Dragonborn Emperors, and without Dragonborn to lead it, the Septim Empire began its slow decline and disintegration. Another example is the Vestige during the events of the Planemeld, who gained the direct blessings of Akatosh to allow them to fight Molag Bal in the heart of his realm of Coldharbour. In that case, Akatosh did not even consider granting his blessings and power until the Vestige had left Nirn entirely and was inside Coldharbour, due to the damage that their battle would cause to Nirn.
    • The event that led to the disappearance of the Dwemer may have been this for the Dwemer. The Dwemer uncovered the Heart of Lorkhan, the still-beating "divine center" of the "dead" god who helped create the mortal plane, deep beneath the Red Mountain volcano. Kagrenac, the Dwemeri "Chief Tonal Architect," created the tools needed to tap into the power of the Heart and planned to do so with the goal of allowing the Dwemer to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence. Their enemies-turned-allies, the highly religious Chimer, found out and believed this to be a blasphemy, so they attacked. According to one telling of the Dwemer's final days, Kagrenac only used the tools on the Heart as a last-ditch effort when the Chimer successfully infiltrated the Dwemer's Red Mountain stronghold. In his haste, he got something wrong, which caused the Dwemer to disappear from all known planes of existence in a single instant.
    • The Bosmer have a ritual known as "The Wild Hunt", in which a number of Bosmer transform themselves into nightmarish beasts, and then rampage through Valenwood destroying their enemies. Because there is no known way to reverse the transformation, the ritual is considered a taboo subject by Bosmer and is sanctioned for use only in dire circumstances. (Only twice in history has it actually been sanctioned, and both times, it achieved its intended goal.)
  • Golden Mean Fallacy: The Redguards of Hammerfell have traditionally divided themselves into two sociopolitical groups: The Crowns, decended from Redguard nobility, hold Yokudan tradition in high regard and dislike foreigners, while the Forebears, descended from the warriors who conquered Hammerfell, are more comfortable with incorporating aspects of Breton and Imperial culture into their way of life. A third political movement, the Lhotunics, emerged after the Warp in the West, who espouse both the cosmopolitan values of the Forebears and the sense of tradition and respect for the past of the Crowns, and are generally held in contempt by both sides.
  • Golem: Golem-like Atronachs are ubiquitous thorughout the series ever since Daggerfall. Atronachs are a type of elementally aligned lesser Daedra. The Flame, Frost, and Storm Atronachs appear as creatures made of fire, ice, and lightning (typically mixed with metal or rock), respectively. Other varieties which have appeared in the series include Air, Flesh, Iron, and Stone. All varieties are at least vaguely humanoid in shape, with some much more humanoid than others. As a group, Atronachs have no particular affinity toward any Daedric Prince, though individual Atronachs may be found in their service. Atronachs are a favored summon of mortal conjurers.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation:
    • Readers of the eponymous Elder Scrolls whose knowledge doesn't go much further than what the Scrolls really are usually have their minds irreparably damaged from simply looking at one. Even those who've had training to actually read and understand a Scroll have odd personalities (including the specially trained Moth Priests). A reader without comprehension is dazed or stunned by the twisting patterns. One who can comprehend but isn't mentally prepared is struck blind. Even those with training slowly lose their vision. Eventually all readers receive nothing from the scroll but a foretelling that if they read again, whatever they may learn, they will also go utterly blind. The reader either then resigns or prepares his mind to receive the mind-blasting knowledge of his final reading. Finally, even those who merely study the nature of the scrolls, never actually using them, are driven to madness with almost clockwork regularity.
    • Pelinal Whitestrake, the legendary 1st Era hero of mankind/racist berserker. Believed to have been a Shezarrine, physical incarnations of the spirit of the "dead" creator god Lorkhan (known to the Imperials as "Shezarr"), Pelinal came to St. Alessia to serve as her divine champion in the war against the Ayleids. His Axe-Craziness probably goes with being a divine potential time traveler - he was aware of the nonlinear part of the universe as well as Akatosh's dual nature, and even realized that he was a sort of indirect creator of his arch-nemesis Umaril (since if it were not for Pelinal's deeds then Umaril would not be famous).
    • The Tribunal deity Almalexia does not handle the loss of her godhood well, inversing With Great Power Comes Great Insanity. Azura implies that it would be the eventual fate of all those who tapped into the power of the Heart of Lorkhan, as the mortal mind simply isn't equipped for the rigors of godhood.
    • This can be said for those who give into the will of Sheogorath, embracing his insanity. He grants madness as a gift and sees it as a blessing.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Depending on the version of events you choose to believe, this may have been the case for the Dwemer. In the 1st Era, the entire race mysteriously disappeared when one of their chief architects attempted to tap in to the power of the Heart of Lorkhan, hoping to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence. There are many theories about what exactly transpired, with one of them being that the Dwemer actually succeeded. Afterall, how would those left behind on the "lower plane" know the difference?
  • Gone Swimming, Clothes Stolen: Pops up a couple of times in the series. In once instance, you help the person get his clothes back. In another, you can be the one stealing the clothes.
  • Good Bad Girl: Dibella, the Aedric Divine Goddess of Beauty and Love, is associated with elements of innocence (such as always being depicted holding a delicate white flower), but is also associated with the more carnal and sexual aspects of love. The Dibellan Arts, a loosely defined form of lovemaking, is in fact the primary means of worshiping her.
  • The Good Chancellor:
    • The Psijic Order, a powerful Magical Society and the oldest monastic order in Tamriel, serve as advisors to the leaders of Tamriel and consider it a sacred duty which they call "seliffrnsae," meaning "grave and faithful counsel". During times of extreme turmoil, particularly when their powerful magical knowledge may be sought after by malevolent forces, the Order has been known to withdraw entirely from outside affairs, right up to making their home island disappear without a trace. Despite this typical benevolence, they have also been ignored by Tamriellic leaders. For example, Emperor Uriel V ignored their warnings and led a disastrous failed invasion of Akavir. Afterward, the Order withdrew from serving in this position and became so suspect in the eyes of the Empire that their ambassadors were barred from entering the Imperial City.
    • Ocato served Emperor Uriel Septim VII, and later his bastard son Martin, as both High Chancellor of the Elder Council and as Imperial Battlemage. After the events of the Oblivion Crisis leave no Septim on the Imperial throne for the first time in centuries, Ocato took over as Potentate in accordance with the Imperial Elder Council Charter after exhausting all other alternatives. For the next ten years, Ocato successfully held the fractured Empire together. Unfortunately for the Empire, (and the rest of Tamriel in general), Ocato was so good at keeping the peace that the Thalmor had him assassinated in an attempt to destabilize the Empire and make way for the rebirth of the Aldmeri Dominion. The power of the Dominion would wax in the decades leading up to the Great War and the events of Skyrim while the power of the Third Empire would wane to the point of becoming a true Vestigial Empire.
  • Good Girls Avoid Abortion: Played with by Barenziah, the Queen Mother of Morrowind and former lover of Tiber Septim with whom she got pregnant. Barenziah wanted to keep the child. However, as a bastard child from a Dunmer mistress would be very inconvenient for the Emperor, he basically forced his healer to magically abort it against her will. This became a plot point in the story as the story implied she also had trouble conceiving later in life due to the limited fertility of Dunmer and the trauma of the event.
  • Good Is Not Nice:
    • Some of the Daedric Princes qualify. As a whole, the Daedric Princes are divine beings Above Good and Evil who operate under Blue and Orange Morality in line with their spheres of influence. However, they can certainly be seen as "good" or "evil" from the point of view of morals, usually depending on whether a certain Prince's actions benefit or harm mortals more often. Specific examples:
      • Azura, Daedric Prince of Dusk and Dawn, also known the Lady of Prophesy, encourages her worshipers to love themselves as much as they love her, and is very benevolent and protective over her greatest servants, as seen in her treatment of the the Nerevarine in Morrowind. However, she has no compunction against expressing her displeasure in very nasty ways, having a cruel and often petty streak toward those who defy her in any way. She is fan of Disproportionate Retribution toward those who wrong her, such as (possibly) cursing the Chimer race to becoming the ashen-skinned, red-eyed Dunmer after their leaders, the Tribunal, defied her. Later, in Morrowind, she guides the Nerevarine into casting down the Tribunal under the guise of guiding him/her in defeating Dagoth Ur, whose source of power just happens to be the same as the Tribunal's. In the years that followed, as an indirect result of these actions, Morrowind is practically destroyed as a result of the Oblivion Crisis, the "Red Year", and the Argonian invasion. The entire Dunmer way of life is disrupted, but Azura becomes even more revered by them as the center of their "New Temple" religion.
      • Meridia, a Daedric Prince whose sphere is obscured to mortals but is associated with Light, Beauty, and the Energy of Living Things, is another example. She is a noted adversary of Molag Bal, Daedric Prince of Domination and Rape, who might be the closest thing to a true God of Evil in the setting and whose actions are never benevolent toward mortals, which definitely makes her a lighter shade of gray in comparison. She also has an extreme hatred of anything undead or involving Necromancy, and wiping these things out is also typically beneficial to most mortals. However, she can very quickly cross into Knight Templar territory regarding these things, is a Narcissistic Proud Beauty, and will go through the Face–Heel Revolving Door with each appearance. In one instant, she'll be acting as the Big Good in defending mortal lives from hostile takeover by supernatural forces. Then in another, she'll be giving aid to beings who seek to overthrow the Nine Divines and enslave the races of Men.
      • Noctural, the Daedric Prince of Night and Darkness, also known as "Lady Luck", is another. Being the patron of thieves automatically makes her a few shades of gray darker, but despite this and her association with darkness, she is usually quite benevolent to her followers. As long as they remain on her good side, they are gifted with "scoundrel's luck" and, for the highest ranking followers, extremely powerful and useful abilities. She is also stated to be a "Well Done, Son!" Guy toward them, offering little praise but pushing them to do better.
    • The Eight (later Nine) Divines, aka the Aedra, pre-creation beings who aided Lorkhan in creating the mortal world, are almost universally seen as a benevolent force of good on Nirn. However, they've been known to cross this with Good Is Not Soft. After learning that aiding Lorkhan had caused them to lose a significant portion of their divine power, they "killed" Lorkhan and tore his "divine center" (heart) from his sundered body. They cast it down into the mortal world he helped to create, forcing his spirit to wander. Later, when the Daedra worshiping Ayleids enslaved the races of men and tormented them with unimaginable cruelty, they allied with the leader of the humans (Alessia) to overthrow the Ayleids, sending her divine reinforcements (Morihaus and Pelinal Whitestrake), as well as aiding in other ways, to ensure a human victory. It may not have been entirely benevolent on their part, however, as Alessia promised to make the Divines the primary religion of her new empire and followed through on this promise after the Ayleids were defeated.
    • Lorkhan himself is in the old Nordic pantheon, where he is known as Shor. Shor is a "bloodthirsty warrior king", though to the Proud Warrior Race Nords, this is a good thing.
    • The Vigil of Stendarr is a Church Militant order dedicated to hunting down and destroying supernatural threats to mortal life, including Daedra, Daedra worshipers, vampires, lycanthropes, and others. The Vigil formed in the wake of the Oblivion Crisis with the goal of preventing any similar incidents. The Vigilants are very much a force for the greater good, but they have no qualms with brutally killing any worshipers of malicious Daedra. They'll also forcibly confiscate Daedric artifacts and will readily kill anyone who refuses to hand them over, even those artifacts associated with the less malicious Daedric Princes.
  • Good Is Not Soft: The Aedra, "original spirit" beings who sacrificed large portions of their divine power during the creation of Mundus, the mortal plane, are seen as uniformly benevolent, highly regarded, and worshiped as the primary religion throughout most of Tamriel. However, several instances in history have seen them get tough. Two of the most prominent:
    • After they realized that Lorkhan tricked them out of their power in order to create Mundus, they got even. How? They "killed" him, tore out his heart ("divine center"), and tried to destroy it. When it proved indestructible, they cast it down into the world he had them create where his spirit would be forced to wander.
    • When Alessia and her Nedic people (Precursors to most of the races of Men) were enslaved and tortured by the Daedra worshiping Ayleids, the Aedra sent aid. Not only did mankind win the war, the Ayleids were driven to extinction as a unique race.
  • The Good King:
    • In general throughout the series, Emperor Uriel Semptim VII serves as one up until his death in Oblivion. He's a fair and balanced ruler who keeps the Cyrodiilic Empire whole through multiple crises and intervenes directly to kick off the plots of Daggerfall and Morrowind.
    • Imperial propaganda claims that this is the case for Tiber Septim, founder of the Third Cyrodiilic Empire. For the most part, he played it straight, uniting all of Tamriel within one empire for the first time in history and generally being a benevolent emperor. However, he did make some morally questionable moves during his reign, such as demanding that his bastard child with Barenziah, the young queen of Morrowind, be magically aborted because it would be inconvenient to his legitimate heirs and claiming that he was betrayed by his Imperial Battlemage, Zurin Arctus, when Arctus did exactly what Septim wanted him to do and, if anything, Septim betrayed Arctus. Following his death, Septim ascended to godhood as the deity Talos. Part of Talos realm includes being the "God of Good Governance", essentially making him the god of the trope.
    • Ysgramor, the ancient Atmoran hero and Founder of the Kingdom of Skyrim, is considered the standard of what a king should be by the Nords. He was a wise Genius Bruiser and Papa Wolf who led a Badass Army in conquering Skyrim from the hated Falmer (Snow Elves). Obviously, the elves have a very different opinion...
  • The Good Kingdom: Though always referred to as The Empire, the Septim Empire is much closer to this trope, along with elements of The Federation. It is a largely benevolent force of good throughout the series and backstory, espousing fairly liberal cosmopolitan beliefs while setting up trade and mercantilism ties which peacefully tie the provinces together. Personal freedoms are also fairly unrestricted, with certain (logical) exceptions, such as working to eliminate open Fantastic Racism and quashing some of the more dangerous extremist religions. Even its harshest critics tend to admit that the Empire generally acts in the best interests of Tamriel as a whole, though its vast bureaucracy often bogs it down.
  • Good Morning, Crono: Every game in the main series to date, with the exception of Oblivion, starts with the player character asleep and being woken up.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: The series in general has this with the "Hand-to-Hand" skill. Even with all sorts of legendarily powerful weapons floating around, getting really good at beating people up with your bare hands has its advantages. (The skill itself is dropped as of Skyrim, but it is still possible to fight barehanded.)
  • Good Running Evil: Throughout the series, you can choose to play as a good character, an evil character, or any shade of gray in between. If you choose to play as a "good" character, you can still rise to the top of multiple "evil" organizations, such as the Dark Brotherhood (an assassin's guild doubling as a Religion of Evil) and the Thieves' Guild (which has rules like no-killing but is still a group centered around stealing the property of others). This also works in reverse, as you can be an outright evil character who murders unprovoked and steals everything that isn't nailed down, yet rise to the top of several "good" factions like honorable warrior guilds and temple organizations, as long as you don't kill or steal from your fellow members.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars:
    • Facial scars are an option in a couple of games in the series when creating your Player Character. These range from small, somewhat clean blade cuts to borderline mutilations. Whether these are good or evil is up to how you play.
    • Series' recurring character Jiub has a gruesome scar over his eye that looks very much like an "evil" scar. Played straight initially, as he was a skooma addict and freelance assassin before ending up in prison. After his release, he sought to atone for his "sordid" life, and became a legendary hero by eradicating the much reviled Cliff Racers from Vvardenfell, subverting it.
  • Good Shepherd: There are numerous examples throughout the series of priests (usually of the Nine Divines but not always) being genuinely good people who care about the people they serve. Specific examples can be found on the trope page.
  • Good Wings, Evil Wings:
  • The Goomba:
    • Throughout the series, giant rats and mudcrabs tend to fill this role. In several games, one of the two will be the very first enemy you face.
    • Among the ranks of the lesser Daedra, Scamps are this. They are the weakest Daedric creature, and are most commonly found in the service of the Daedric Prince Mehrunes Dagon, where they serve as little better than Cannon Fodder in his Legions of Hell. Herne are a satyr-like race of lesser Daedra that are little better than Scamps, having low health, dealing low damage, and lacking the ability to cast spells.
  • Goroawase Number: The Altmer (High Elf) race have names heavily inspired by Tolkien's "Quenya" Conlang. However, The Pocket Guide to the Empire (a work of dubious in-universe accuracy), suggests that Altmer don't bother to give themselves names. When they greet, they address one another with a long combination of numbers that sounds like a name if you aren't fluent in their language. (The Elder Scrolls Online further buries this idea with a statement that Altmer have Overly Long Names which, while hard to pronounce, consist of long surnames based on family members.)
  • Gotta Catch Them All: Most games have a massive Collection Sidequest which qualifies, and is also frequently That One Sidequest. The "Threads of the Webspinner" from Morrowind (need to collect 27 scattered items with very little guidance on finding about half of them) and "No Stone Unturned" from Skyrim(need to collect 24 scattered items) are two of the more infamous.
  • Götterdämmerung: This is a cornerstone of the most fundamentalist Elven religions, particularly for the Altmer. They hold that reality is a prison that souls are trapped in by the trickster Lorkhan when he bound some of his fellow et'Ada ("original spirits") to form the Mundus, and was "killed" as a result. The religions of men, on the other hand, hold that the pre-creation divinity state was the prison, and the Mundus is a proving ground in which to transcend beyond the original spirits, with Lorkhan deliberately failing to do so himself in order for all else to "know how not to fail." The Thalmor, an Altmeri extremist group who seized power following the Oblivion Crisis, are attempting to undo creation in a scheme to return to pre-creation divinity. How? Throughout all the previous centuries, several metaphysical "Towers" holding reality together were destroyed or otherwise de-powered (Numidium, Red Mountain, White-Gold Tower), and reality was basically being held together by reverence and worship in the first known person to have undergone such apotheosis: Talos. The Thalmor have essentially banned worship of Talos in an attempt to undo creation.
  • Go Wait Outside: Being a series that makes full use of in-universe time passing, quite a few quests throughout the series require that you leave the area the quest giver is in and wait before you can get another quest out of them.
  • Graceful Loser:
    • This is a trait of the Sload, a race of "slugmen" native to the archipelago of Thras to the southwest of Tamriel. The Sload are an Absolute Xenophobe race with a tendency toward being Unfettered Chessmasters. They are very deliberate and cautious, never rushing or acting quickly. However, Sload are known to express cheerful affinity toward anyone that does manage to defeat or outwit them.
    • This is also a trait of dragons, who work on this principle whenever two of them have a fight. One either goes down fighting or submits. Submitting to a superior foe goes against their nature to dominate, but it's not seen as shameful. What is shameful (and calls into question whether whether you're a true dragon) is refusing to fight or fleeing.
    • Several Daedric Princes, including Hircine, Molag Bal, and Jyggalag amongst others, have shown this trait when their plans are foiled. Some even outright congratulate the victor.
  • Grandfather Clause: The Standard Fantasy Setting—elves, dwarves, wizards and orcs chilling in an eternally medieval universe—has been parodied and deconstructed to Hell and back over the last few decades, to the point that no original works can get away with playing it straight anymore. The Elder Scrolls, being such a Long Runner, tends to be safe from such ridicule. It also helps that, while the series started on a Standard Fantasy Setting foundation, Nirn has undergone so much World Building that very few of the Standard Fantasy tropes are played truly straight after the first few installments.
  • Gratuitous Greek: The Magna-Ge, aka "Star Orphans", are the et'Ada ("original spirits") who fled during the creation of Mundus (the mortal plane) with their "father", Magnus. One of these Magna-Ge is known as Leλ, spelled with the lambda.
  • Gratuitous Japanese: Akaviri weapons include the Tanto, Wakizashi, Katana, and the Japanese-sounding-but-incorrect Dai-Katana (which should be Daito).
  • Gratuitous Latin: The Imperials, (Cyrodiil's native race of Men) are heavily influenced by Ancient Rome. Most have Latin-sounding names and Latin sounding words (real or otherwise) permeate through their culture. Early in the series, the Imperials had two distinct sub-cultures: the Colovians (hearty highland folk) and the Nibenese (cosmopolitan heartlanders), with this trope only applying to the Colovians. By the late 3rd Era, this this separation was almost entirely dropped, with the Imperials drawing heavily from ancient Rome.
  • Gravity Barrier: Attempted starting with Morrowind, where many paths are bracketed by tall hills which cannot be climbed. However, the Levitation spell gets you right over. Levitation was removed starting with Oblivion, which (along with Skyrim) continued the trend of using these. In the event you climb them anyway, there is an Invisible Wall surrounding the games' playable area.
  • Great Big Library of Everything:
    • Apocrypha is the Daedric Plane of Hermaeus Mora, the Daedric Prince of Knowledge (with a particular specialty in knowledge of the Eldritch variety). It is a massive Magical Library. It is said to contain all of the knowledge in the universe.
    • The Imperial Library is the largest library on Nirn itself. Housed in the Imperial City's White-Gold Tower (which also serves as the palace of the Emperor), it also houses all known Elder Scrolls. Both the library and the Elder Scrolls are maintained by the Cult of the Ancestor Moth, whose members are referred to as "Moth Priests", an order dedicated to Julianos, the Aedric Divine God of Wisdom and Logic. (An unsubscribed event occurred sometime in the 4th Era which caused all of the Elder Scrolls to vanish from the library. They are now found scattered throughout Tamriel, and the Moth Priests have been working to recover them.)
  • Greater-Scope Paragon:
    • From the series' primary Creation Myth is Anu, the Anthropomorphic Personification of the primordial force of stasis/order/light. The interplay with his twin brother, Padomay (who represents the force of change/chaos/darkness) led to creation. Creation, sometimes anthropomorphized as the female entity "Nir", favored Anu, which angered Padomay. Padomay killed Nir and shattered the twelve worlds she gave birth to. Anu then wounded Padomay, presuming him dead. Anu salvaged the pieces of the twelve worlds to create one world: Nirn. Padomay returned and wounded Anu, seeking to destroy Nirn. Anu then pulled Padomay and himself outside of time, ending Padomay's threat to creation "forever". From their intermingled blood came the et'Ada, or "original spirits", who would go on to become the series' famous Aedra and Daedra.
    • Whether you consider Lorkhan to be this or a Greater-Scope Villain is based on whether or not you believe creating Mundus was a good thing. Most of the races of Mer (Elves) believe that it was a malevolent act which robbed the pre-creation spirits of their divinity and forced them to experience mortal suffering and loss. Most of the races of Men believe, however, that it was a benevolent act which freed the pre-creation spirits from a prison of unchanging stasis and gave them Mundus as a "testing ground" for the spirits to ascend even higher.
    • The Eight Divines (Nine when including Talos) are the greatest forces of good in the setting and are almost uniformly seen as benevolent throughout Tamriel. However, because they sacrificed most of their power creating Mundus, the mortal plane, at the suggestion of Lorkhan (who they "killed" for his perceived treachery), they prefer a much lighter touch in dealing with mortal affairs, at most typically working through mortal agents. Any acts of direct intervention are reserved for averting The End of the World as We Know It.
    • A Deity of Human Origin, Talos was one of (at least) three people whose presence in the world was warped together by the influence of two reality-warping artifacts and the subsequent re-alignment of the timeline to become the Ninth Divine. He is the most active Divine by the 4th Era, and preventing him from saving anything is an open goal of the Thalmor-led Aldmeri Dominion. (His various connections to Lorkhan do him no favors with the Dominion in this regard.)
    • The Psijic Order is a powerful Magical Society and the oldest monastic order in Tamriel. While it is their sacred duty (known as "seliffrnsae," meaning "grave and faithful counsel",) to offer their services as advisors to the leaders of Tamriel, they are typically aloof and prefer not to intervene directly in the affairs of other groups. They are, however, ultimately one of the closest to a force of true "good" in Tamriel and have directly intervened a few times in history to avert The End of the World as We Know It level events.
  • Greater-Scope Villain:
    • From the series' primary Creation Myth is Padomay, the Anthropomorphic Personification of the primordial force of change/chaos/darkness. The interplay with his twin brother, Anu (who represents the force of stasis/order/light) led to creation. Creation, sometimes anthropomorphized as the female entity "Nir", favored Anu, which angered Padomay. Padomay killed Nir and shattered the twelve worlds she gave birth to. Anu then wounded Padomay, presuming him dead. Anu salvaged the pieces of the twelve worlds to create one world: Nirn. Padomay returned and wounded Anu, seeking to destroy Nirn. Anu then pulled Padomay and himself outside of time, ending Padomay's threat to creation "forever". From their intermingled blood came the et'Ada, or "original spirits", who would go on to become the series' famous Aedra and Daedra.
    • Whether you consider Lorkhan, one of those et'Ada, to be this or a Greater-Scope Villain is based on whether or not you believe creating Mundus (the mortal plane) was a good thing. Most of the races of Mer (Elves) believe that it was a malevolent act which robbed the pre-creation spirits of their divinity and forced them to experience mortal suffering and loss. Most of the races of Men believe, however, that it was a benevolent act which freed the pre-creation spirits from a prison of unchanging stasis and gave them Mundus as a "testing ground" for the spirits to ascend even higher.
    • There is one of these behind seemingly every main quest plot throughout the series. It is often one of the Daedric Princes, and, specifically, often Mehunues Dagon. Specific details for each game are listed on the trope page.
  • The Greatest Story Never Told: The in-game book Father of the Niben details the travels of Topal the Pilot, the Aldmeri Bold Explorer and poet, who was the first to discover and explore Tamriel during the Merethic Era, encountering primitive versions of the Khajiit and Argonians, as well as a now extinct race of Bird People. Unfortunately, details of large portions of his trip are missing from the historical record. Most notable is an 80 month period between landing in modern day High Rock and being on the north-east coast of Morrowind.
  • Great Gazoo:
    • Lorkhan. He was one of the et'Ada ("original spirits") who convinced/tricked some of his fellow et'Ada into sacrificing large portions of their divine power in order to create Mundus, the mortal plane. The races of Mer (Elves) generally view this as a malevolent act which robbed their divine ancestors of their pre-creation immortality and forced them to experience mortal suffering and loss. The races of Men, however, view this as a benevolent act which freed the spirits from the "prison" of pre-creation unchanging stasis. In both cases, Lorkhan is still viewed as a trickster figure.
    • Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of Madness. He's a Cloud Cuckoolander prone to Mood Swings where he can range from Axe-Crazy to Affably Evil at the drop of a hat. Though he can seem charming and harmless one second, he is still a god and very capable of hurling planets or raining down flaming dogs if the mood strikes him.
    • Sanguine, the Daedric Prince of Debauchery and Hedonism. He mostly plays with and, at worst, annoys mortals while attempting to drag them into sin with various vices. He is definitely one of the less serious Daedric Princes. His "Myriad Realms of Oblivion" constantly reform to become the pleasure paradise of whoever is visiting. He has also been known to take a mortal form to visit interesting mortals on Mundus, including being a "regular" in the courts of the Cyrodiilic emperors (especially Reman Cyrodiil).
  • Great Offscreen War: Several significant wars have been fought in the series backstory or between installments that have shaped the game world.
    • The War of the First Council in the First Era set the stage for all that followed. The devout, Daedra/ancestor-worshipping Chimer and atheistic, scientific Dwemer came into conflict in the land now known as Morrowind. After years of fighting, they were forced to team up to drive out the invading Nords. Their alliance remained under the leadership of Chimeri Lord Indoril Nerevar and Dwemer Dumac Dwarfking, known as the "first council." It was a time of great peace and prosperity for both races. However, the Dwemer Dug Too Deep beneath Red Mountain and unearthed the Heart of Lorkhan, the creator god. Chief Tonal Architect, Lord Kagrenec, crafted tools to tap into the power of the heart, hoping to allow the Dwemer to transcend mortality. The Chimer, seeing this as a blasphemy against their gods in the Daedra, attempted to stop the Dwemer, reigniting their war. Forces led by Nerevar and Lord Voryn Dagoth infiltrated the Dwemer Red Mountain stronghold. Exactly what happened next is up for intense debate, but the Dwemer disappeared from existence, Nerevar was slain, Dagoth and the Tribunal used the tools on the heart to achieve godhood, and Azura cursed the Chimer with dark skin and red eyes, transforming them into the modern Dunmer. The Nord defeat in Morrowind also marked the furthest expanse of their early empire, the first empire of Men in Tamriel. Many of their conquests were thanks to their mastery of the Thu'um as a weapon of war. After that defeat, Jurgen Windcaller, one of the defeated Nord leaders, reflected on it and determined that it was a punishment from the gods for misusing the Thu'um. Thus, he created the Way of the Voice and founded the Greybeards to only use the Thu'um to honor the gods. Afterward, it saw a drastic drop in use as a weapon of war and the Nords were never again able to reach that level as an empire. The aftereffects of this battle can still be felt in the plotlines for Morrowind and Skyrim.
    • The Tiber Wars were a series of wars fought as part of Tiber Septim's campaign to conquer all of Tamriel. Septim had conquered all but Morrowind (protected by their Physical Gods and the Summerset Isles (protected by their powerful magics) during the late 2nd Era, the only two provinces the last empire out of Cyrodiil, the Reman Dynasty, had failed to conquer.note  Unknown to Septim, the Dunmer demi-gods of Morrowind, known as the Tribunal, had been cut off from their divine power source by their ancient enemy, Dagoth Ur. Septim's legions easily sacked Mournhold, the capital of Morrowind. Without their gods to protect them, the rest of Morrowind would have been devastated in a protracted war with Septim's legions. Knowing this, Vivec, one of these gods, met with Septim and forged an Armistice. Morrowind would join the empire as a Voluntary Vassal, sparing his people from war. In addition, Vivec offered the Dwemer-crafted Reality Warping Humongous Mecha - The Numidium - to Septim in exchange for special privileges for Morrowind. (Specifially, continued Great House rule, free worship of the Tribunal, and the right to continue practicing slavery which was outlawed elsewhere in the empire.) Septim then used the Numidium to Curb Stomp the Altmer of the Summerset Isles (sacking their capital in less than hour), bringing them under the rule of men for the first time in history. With the unification of Tamriel, Septim began the Third Era of Tamriellic history during which the games from Arena to Oblivion all take place.
    • The War of Betony was fought between the Bretons of Daggerfall under King Lysandus and the Redguard of Sentinel under King Camaron over control of the strategically important island of Betony in the Iliac Bay. Both kings were slain during the war, which saw Lysandus' son lead the forces of Daggerfall to victory. Lysandus' ghost, however, returned to haunt the city of Daggerfall, which kicks off the plot to the Daggerfall.
    • The "Great War" was fought between the forces of the Aldmeri Dominion under the leadership of the anti-human extremist Thalmor and the remnants of the Septim Empire under Emperor Titus Mede II in the 4th Era. The Dominion's forces sacked the Imperial City, committing gruesome atrocities against the city's populace. With reinforcements from his Nord forces in Skyrim, Mede was able to recapture the city, but at great cost. Knowing that his empire was too exhausted to endure further conflict, Mede reluctantly signed the White-Gold Concordant; a treaty that, among other things, banned the worship of Talos in the Empire. This particular provision angered the Nords most of all, leading to the Civil War in Skyrim.
  • Green Hill Zone: Most games start the player off in a place fitting the trope. (The Ascadian Isles in Morrowind, central Cyrodiil in Oblivion, Whiterun/Falkreath Holds in Skyrim etc.)
  • Grey and Gray Morality: Much of the series. While a few of the main quests feature some more standard "good vs. obviously evil" affairs, the game world itself is full of shades of gray, such as the Great House conflicts in Morrowind and the Civil War in Skyrim.
  • Grim Up North:
    • The northernmost continent on Nirn is Atmora, and it fit the trope, at least historically. It very likely did look a lot like this trope to the races of Mer (Elves) during the 1st Era Man-Mer hostility in Skyrim, as Atmoran Men kept emigrating over and supplementing the Mannish manpower. However, it is now too cold: the last reliable reports indicate that it is frozen over and uninhabited. Expeditions to Atmora in the 2nd and 3rd Eras found it to be nothing more than a frozen wasteland with no signs of intelligent life. According to the Dunmeri Physical God Vivec in his Lessons of Vivec book series, he traveled there with Lord Nerevar and "found nothing but frozen bearded kings".
    • For the continent of Tamriel, this is the case for Skyrim (at least to non-Nords). It is a cold and snowy land, filled to the brim with all manner of hostile wildlife. A major part of the Nords' Proud Warrior Race ethos stems from the fact that they Had To Be Sharp simply to survive in such a hostile environment, much less flourish. To outsiders, the Nords own violent Horny Vikings style culture and their propensity to put Honor Before Reason contributes to the overall "grim" nature of the land as well.
    • Tamriel also has the island of Solstheim, laying in the northern ocean between Skyrim and Morrowind. Solstheim is a mostly frozen and barren hunk of rock inhabited only by the Noble Savage Skaal, treacherous Reiklings, and lots of dangerous wildlife. Only after ebony deposits were discovered there did the Empire start caring about it. By the 4th Era, it has managed to become even more grim. The mining colony of Raven Rock was abandoned and is now a massive refugee city for the Dunmer who were forced to flee Morrowind following the Red Year. The southern end of the island is blasted with ash from Red Mountain's eruption and the northern parts are still full of Reiklings and dangerous wildlife. The Skaal still survive, but the return of the dragons has brought even greater threats to Solstheim.
    • The continent of Akavir has this going on. The northernmost territory is referred to as "Snow Hell" and is home of the Kamal, Mongol-inspired "snow demons" who freeze every winter and thaw out every spring to attack the Tang Mo "monkey folk" in a Vicious Cycle.
  • Grotesque Cute: Namira is the Daedric Prince of the Ancient Darkness, associated with all things revolting, decay, disfiguring diseases, and cannibalism. She usually associated with things most would consider disgusting or repulsive, such as slugs, insects, or disfiguring diseases. In fact she only allows those considered ugly to summon her, and she hates attractive people.
  • Groundhog Peggy Sue: The series has the concept of "CHIM", where one becomes aware of the nature of Anu's Dream but exists as one with it and maintains a sense of individuality. Vivec, the Dunmeri Tribunal deity, claims to have achieved this and (very cryptically and steeped in heavy metaphor) explains what this means in his 36 Lessons of Vivec book series. Essentially, achieving CHIM is the realization that you are a character in a video game. This comes with it a number of powers which would seem god-like in-universe, including the ability to Save Scum, use the Master Console, and use the "Construction Set" Level Editor. Talos, the Deity of Human Origin ascended god-form of Tiber Septim (and possibly others, is another theorized to have achieved CHIM. Further, the series has the in-universe, metaphysical concept of "heroes". These are rare individuals not bound in any way by fate and who have the ability to rule their own destiny. Heroes are closely related to the prophecies revealed in the Elder Scrolls, but are not bound by them, and they often grow to become far more powerful than most other mortals. Each Player Character in the series to date has been such a hero, and many others are mentioned in the series' lore (often as Long Dead Badasses and Founders Of Their Kingdoms). Where this trope in particular applies is the "Save Scumming" aspect of CHIM. As Vivec explains in his Morrowind dialogue:
    Vivec: "When I die in the world of time, then I'm completely asleep. I'm very much aware that all I have to do is choose to wake. And I'm alive again. Many times I have very deliberately tried to wait patiently, a very long, long time before choosing to wake up. And no matter how long it feels like I wait, it always appears, when I wake up, that no time has passed at all."
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: The series in general has some of most infamous City Guards in gaming, combining aspects of this trope along with The All-Seeing A.I. and Shoplift and Die. Specific examples listed by game can be found on the trope page.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: The series has had NPCs join you, often as part of Escort Missions, dating all the way back to Daggerfall. However, in large part due to AI limitations, a lack of commands to give them, and the inability to give them stronger equipment, followers have been more of a tedious detriment throughout much of the series. It isn't until Skyrim overhauls the follower system in a similar vein to Bethesda's Fallout sister series that they become a much more useful part of the franchise. (Before then, Game Mods generally took steps to make followers more useful.)
  • Guide Dang It!: The epic size of the game worlds mixed with the sheer density of content throughout the series leads to numerous well-hidden and difficult to figure out instances in each game. Specific examples are listed by example on the trope page.
  • Guile Hero:
    • Throughout the series, heroes of the Breton race, both real and in stories, tend to rely on their wits and resourcefulness to succeed. Even when the fail, such as in How Orsinium Passed to the Orcs, these skills allow them to fail gracefully.
    • Tiber Septim, the founder of the Third Tamriellic Empire who ascended after his death as Talos, the Ninth Divine, is considered one (at least in the more orthodox tales). Whenever overwhelming force wasn't enough to accomplish his goals, he'd find creative alternatives. The more heretical tales of his life instead paint him as a Manipulative Bastard, who wasn't above betrayal and using assassination get what he desired.
      "If you are of no use to Tiber Septim, he will see to it that you are of no use to his enemies either..."
    • The ancient Yokudan (Precursors of the Redguards) hero Frandar Hunding was on as the leader of the Ansei during the War of the Singers. Vastly outnumbered (Hira's forces outnumbered the Ansei thirty to one) and, despite their skills, woefully unprepared to form into an organized army, Frandar devised the "Hammer and Anvil" strategy to get around the weaknesses of his army. He devised a plan of seven battles, each leading Hira's forces deeper and deeper into the Yokudan wilderness. The first six battles had no clear winner, as was Frandar's intention, but drew Hira's force further and further out. In the seventh battle, at the foot of Mount Hattu (where Frandar lived as a hermit for 30 years while writing the Book of Circles), the "hammer" struck. Frandar's Ansei killed over three-hundred thousand of Hira's men, winning the war.
  • Guns in Church: There is nothing stopping you from running around with your weapon drawn at all times anywhere you please. Morrowind introduces a mechanic where speaking to a NPC with your weapon drawn will result in a disposition penalty, and this is carried into Oblivion. Skyrim drops disposition entirely, however, so NPCs will now only comment if you have a weapon drawn or a spell readied and then go about business as usual.
  • Guttural Growler:
    • Argonians throughout the series have this sort of voice.
    • The Imga, a minor race of intelligent "ape men" native to Valenwood who idolize the Altmer, are said to speak with very gravelly, baritone voices. Despite this, they attempt to speak with perfect enunciation and courtly manners to impress the Altmer.
    • This is also the case for the Giants. 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.
    • Every dragon who has spoken thus far in the series has done so in a deep, booming voice.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot:
    • Heavily Downplayed in terms of the Player Character throughout the series, at least until it did away with classes and attributes starting with Skyrim. The starting Skills (including weapon skills) were determined by the race of character, regardless of gender. However, gender did account for differences in the starting Attributes (Strength, Agility, etc.). Males in the races with gender attribute differences tended to have higher starting physical attributes, making them (initially) better with melee weapons while females tended to have higher starting mental attributes, making them (initially) better spell casters. The difference is small enough to be made up within the first level or two if you so choose, leading to Purely Aesthetic Genders.
    • In the series' backstory, Lost Orphaned Royalty and future Queen of Morrowind, Barenziah, was the sole survivor of her noble Dunmeri family and was placed into foster care with the Imperial loyalist Count and Countess of Darkmoor until she became of age to take over as Vassal Queen. She Played With the trope, as she wanted to train in combat with the sons of the Count and Countess, but was forbidden. She was given a bow to practice with instead. However, when the adults weren't around, she would spar with the boys and bested them more often than not.


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