Skyrim Races Lowdown
Reddit user ZzzZombi has compiled a small encyclopedia-like virtual booklet detailing each of the 10 races playable in The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim. I give you the lowdown.
It is not rare of fans to show their love in creative ways. This booklet-sized PDF file does, however, impress with its quality. Reddit user ZzzZombi has compiled a very complete encyclopedia of the ten playable races in Skyrim detailing everything you need to know in order to pick and choose what you want to play as.
You get general features of the race, some basic history, biology, special abilities and features as well as small tidbits of information you might only find on some secluded wiki in a dark place. While you probably know a lot of what you are going to read in his PDF, it works as a great primer to let you hit the ground running when it comes to Skyrim.
I’m not going to go into much detail here, but I could give you a concise description of the ten races. Here goes:
The Altmer, or High Elves, are the more magicky pointy eared tall folk of the bunch, priding themselves on being the oldest and most civilized on Tamriel. They aren’t very strong, nor very agile, but they are pretty much the bee’s knees when it comes to intelligence and magic, so if you want a glass cannon, you might very well pick these dudes.
The Argonians are the Reptile people, guerilla fighters hailing from the Black Marsh, with natural agility and immunity to most diseases and poisons. I like to think that they look like stoner lizards in Skyrim, yet that tends to also give them the image of fiercely loyal friends, which they are. As with all the beast races, there’s quite a bit of racism towards them, but hey, they have gills and can breathe underwater – I’d be jelly too.
The Bosmer are an odd bunch. You might know them as Wood Elves, and they’re pretty standard in that regard – they’re your typical run of the mill tree hugging archer experts, with amazing nimbleness, quickness and agility. Like their cousins, the Dunmer and Altmer (dark and high elves) they have long pointy ears and slender bodies (though shortest of the bunch), but the wood elves stand out in their culture – they are exclusively meat eaters. They will not harm any plant, not even to build a home, not even to make a tool or a weapon – they will only kill and eat what they kill, no matter what the prey is. They are also known to be cannibals, with the explicit stipulation that a bosmer must eat his combatant’s body upon his victory. Reminds me of Dwarf Fortress, really. They also smoke grubs and caterpillars in bone pipes, as well as ferment meat and milk for booze.
Bretons are the magic-affinity human counterparts, apparently coming about when the pre-elf elves, the Aldmer, banged their human slave chicks. For that reason, they are often called the Manmeri. They seem to have great inherent skill with any arcane ability, but as a result of their heritage they are also extremely hardy in front of magical destructive powers, something that the High Elves do not possess. In addition, they seem to be the guys you are most likely to find being the soul of parties, being passionate, eccentric, poetic, flamboyant, intelligent, willful and outgoing.
The Dunmer, or Dark Elves, are the darker cousins of the Mer, or elves, hailing from huge ol’ Morrowind. They have dark skin tones, coloured from green to blue as well as red glowing eyes, and like the other elves, they’re agile and smart, but a bit unlucky. The Dunmer seem to be the balanced race of the bunch, good at everything but not exactly excelling at anything in particular. Due to their varied skills though, they show great versatility in combat. In addition, these guys are notorious for hating you and everybody else - they could be the Francis of Elder Scrolls.
The Imperials are the citizen folk of Cyrodiil. They aren’t exactly imposing in stature, but due to discipline, skill with heavy armor as well as people skills, they have managed to take control of Tamriel by force. For some reason they have a grudge against the Khajiit. I think they don’t have LOLCATS in Cyrodiil - either that, or they look down upon furries.
The Khajiit are cat people. Apparently they look different depending on the phases of the two moons at the time of birth, making the appearance of these people differ from humanoid to that of a common housecat. In addition, they’re drug dealers, their home region of Elsweyr making most of its income by exporting moon sugar, the main ingredient in the highly addictive drug Skooma. Most of the Khajiit are addicted to this drug and are affectionately known as “sugar tooths”, though they tend to still be able to function under the influence. Because of their feline nature, they’re more adept at using their own claws than weapons, and are naturally capable of stealth and extreme agility. Meow.
The Nords are tall, fair-haired humans hailing from Skyrim. I don’t doubt we’ll be seeing a fair few of these Norse-inspired people. Their special ability is not caring about the cold. They even have great natural resistance against magical frost, and it pays, considering where they come from. Their culture is one of warfare and exploration, eagerly augmenting their martial skills wherever they go, whether by land or sea. Sea travel is natural to them; you may find them all over Tamriel’s coast line.
The Orsimer, or Orcs, are not your enemies. Well, not as you would find them in Lord of the Rings, anyway. They are a warlike people, sure, but their technology is by no means primitive – their heavy armor and berserker rage has won them respect in the Imperial Army, and over time they have gained acceptance in the Empire. The origin story of the Orcs in Elder Scrolls is different than most – apparently they started as elves; these elves were eaten by Daedra, native demons in the universe, and when they got spit out (or did they emerge the other way?) they came out as the corrupt Orsimer. They sort of look like an Orc from Warcraft, but it’s just apples and oranges.
The Redguard are the last of the ten playable races in Skyrim, and one of the most stereotypical – they are natural warriors, seemingly born to battle, yet they do not function well as rank and file soldiers, being a better fit as wandering adventurers or mercenaries. They pretty much look like the typical African-American, with dark skin and wiry hair. In addition, they don’t like magic because it’s weak and OP.
Well then, you still have about a month to decide. What will you be?
I’m not much of an Elder Scrolls player myself, but when I will play the game I’ll probably be a Nord. I like playing as the Norse in every game I head into. You can check out his PDF here.
Elder Scrolls: Skyrim drops on November 11th, 2011 (11.11.11 for short) on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.