For my new character I’ve selected the race of High Elf.
High Elves, in game mechanics, get 150 magic points at the start of the game. In comparison everyone else gets 100 magic points, and you can only increase it by 10 points a level, so in effect, High Elves start five levels ahead of other players. This immediately translates to them being the best candidates to play a wizard.
Once per day, High Elves can increase their magic point regeneration. It makes them, again, better wizards than anyone else.
High Elves come from a group of islands called the Summerset Isle. Since they’re an island culture they’ve developed a strong maritime tradition and reportedly have an extensive fleet for battling pirates. By the time of Skyrim, the High Elves have conquered Valenwood, the land of the Wood Elves, and made a tributary state out of the kingdom of Elseweyr, the land of the Cat Elves.
This High Elf empire is called the Aldmeri Dominion, and it’s run by a group of bureaucrats called the Thalmor.
The Dominion fought a war with the Mede Dynasty (think of them as Fantasy Romans), which ended in an armistice with the Mede Dynasty making many concessions to the Dominion, including lands and banning a specific religion.
Why a High Elf?
There’s an ability you can unlock in the game, on the lower tier of abilities, that allows you to make Elf armor and weapons. They’re by far not the strongest armor or weapons you can unlock, but I thought that the armor set looked cool. The only people you see wearing it in the game were High Elves, so my initial thought was, who could I play that would feasibly use Elf armor?
I took it a step further and supposed, what if I played a High Elf blacksmith? One that has a lot of pride in Elven craftsmanship, so he would unlock Elven armor and weapons and advance no further. Taking it a step further, what if he was also an enchanter, so could make items with magical abilities?
If you’ve read J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, you know that some of the most important Elves in the Tolkien universe were crafters of weapons and magical artifacts. The idea of playing a guy who makes magical swords and magical rings appealed to me.
So, since I wanted to use Elven armor, I figured the most logical choice was a High Elf. The only problem is that the High Elves, in the form of Thalmor agents, are kind of the bad guys of Skyrim.
So, who is this guy?
One of the challenges of picking a character is explaining why he’s even there. The people native to Skyrim, the region, are called Nords, who are especially hostile towards the Thalmor. I thought perhaps that my character was originally from Summerset Isle, but was exiled by his parents for his own protection, since they had made enemies of the Thalmor rulers of the island.
He then chose to go to Skyrim because there are both awesome blacksmiths and awesome enchanters in the area, and he wants to learn from both of them to become the world’s most awesome magical item creator guy.
A typical High Elf can live as long as 800 years, to give you some context, so I chose to make my High Elf 28 years old. He’s practically little more than a kid really. I chose to make him as bulky as possible to represent how he’s a blacksmith. He’s kind of a hulking dude, since High Elves are also the tallest race model in the game.
- My character, let’s call him Elros, doesn’t steal things. He’s generally a pretty honest dude, and has the intention of become a businessman eventually and a famous artisan.
- Elros has to eat and sleep on a somewhat normal schedule.
- Elros cannot fast travel, but instead must either walk or ride a horse to get anywhere in the game.
- Elros, if he becomes an assassin, will forge unique items using secret rituals to use on his victims, and ensure that their souls are captured for his use later.
- Elros has significant pride in Elf culture, so he won’t advance beyond Elven armor.
- Elros has no magical talent beyond enchanting, so he never uses magic.
- Elros’s goal is to master blacksmithing and enchanting, so he will pursue those things with a single-minded focus.
Oh, the assassin part. I liked the idea of an assassin secretly forging new weapons for every target he’s given. So I wanted Elros to join the Assassins’ Guild. But why would a pretty straightforward guy like Elros become an assassin?
My answer is that Elros has a vigilante streak. He doesn’t like to allow bad people to get away with things. This may be related to why he was exiled.
But obviously, Elros can’t really be an assassin at first, he doesn’t have the skills. Luckily, upon arriving in Skyrim he meets a Wood Elf named Faendal. Faendal, like many Wood Elves, is an expert archer and hunter. Since Skyrim is a dangerous place, and Elros is curious about other Elves, he ends up becoming kind of an apprentice to Faendal, who teaches him archery and stealth.
As a result of Faendal’s tutelage, Elros lives by the Green Pact, so that means there’s additional restrictions placed on him:
- Elros will only eat meat.
- Elros will not, in general, kill plants.
- Elros will not shapeshift into an animal (this comes up more than you’d think).
But who is this guy?
Admittedly, it’s still not much to go on in who this guy is. All I got right now is the idea that Elros is very proud, very driven and focused, but also tends to take the law into his own hands when he thinks things aren’t right. It’s not much to go on, but I’m hoping with time I’ll get more of an idea about his character. I was thinking on some level, despite not being a wizard, Elros is pursuing becoming the ideal Elf, so he’s interested in studying the other Elves to learn their ways.
All of this seems like a pretty decent start for the game.