Skyrim Update 1.8 Hints At Upcoming Morrowind DLC
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The Elder Scrolls is rumoured to return to the wastes of Morrowind in the upcoming DLC "Dragonborn"
After a recent update for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, data miners have been hard at work deciphering the recent patch additions, and have come across a series of scripts that hint at content in the next DLC expansion pack. The new content suggests that the latest installment of Dovahkiin's adventure (rumoured to be titled "Dragonborn") will take him to the blasted wastes of Morrowind, the land of the Dunmer located to the east of Skyrim, and the setting for the series' classic installment The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind.
Observant PC players have found scripts which include quest markers for new content, indicating that the new DLC will take place on the island of Solstheim, located to the north of the border between Skyrim and Morrowind and a formerly-disputed territory of the Dunmer and Nords. Locations including "Solstheim", "Raven Rock" and "Castle Karstaag" are marked as destinations for quests - each of which are locations featured in the TES III: Morrowind expansion pack Bloodmoon, which took place on the frozen island hundreds of years before the events of Skyrim. Interestingly however, locations like "Telvanni" are also included - indicating the Dunmer Great House Telvanni, a syndicate of powerful and secretive Elven wizards whose lands are located far to the east of Morrowind province, may also have a presence.
The new scripts also hint at new armour types for the player to obtain, including "Bonemold", "Chitin", "Stalhrim" and "Nordic" - all types of armour featured in Morrowind and its expansions. Interesingly, some types featured were formerly classified as Medium Armor in their original appearances - a classification which no longer exists in subsequent games, being outphased in favour of Light and Heavy Armor, so it remains to be seen how these will factor into Skyrim. Aside from this, scripts linking to new animations also hint that the game will feature dragon-mounted combat - although whether it will involve the player fighting from dragontop, or against dragon-mounted characters, or even both, remains to be seen.
While the island of Vvardenfell was featured as the setting for Morrowind, the homeland of the Dunmer has seen its fair share of misfortunes since players defeated the crazed demigod Dagoth Ur. In the sequel TES IV: Oblivion, the player hears that the Dunmer were faring poorly against the assault by the Daedra and that the land's living gods, the Almsivi, have abandoned their people. Not long after, the pair of novels that followed Oblivion's release showed that a formerly-suspended asteroid crashed into the volcano at Red Mountain, causing a massive cataclysm across the whole province. Groups of Dunmer refugees were forced to migrate to the south into Black Marsh, and west into Skyrim - and especially to the land of Solstheim. Given that the Dunmer and Nords have always had strained relations at best, tensions between the two races have always been high, and enforced cohabitation has led to strife between the two, as seen in the Gray Quarter of Skyrim's eastern city of Windhelm.
Bethesda has yet to make any announcements on a future Skyrim DLC expansion pack, but players on PC have previously uncovered features in the Dawnguard expansion pack - including horse-mounted combat, crossbows and Vampire Lord gameplay - using the same method which turned out to be accurate. However, Bethesda only recently copyrighted the term "Dragonborn" in a process which again mirrors earlier Skyrim content. When the game was first released, some astute players noted paths in the game which led in the direction of Morrowind province, but could not be explored due to impassible barriers. However, players using console commands on PC were able to bypass the implemented boundaries and discovered that fully-implemented (if rough) geography was already in place in the game in both Morrowind and Cyrodiil (the setting for Oblivion), heavily implying that future DLC would feature these regions.
Fans of the series will no doubt be excited at the prospect of returning to possibly the series' most iconic locale - although with former Morrowind writer and designer no longer on the Bethesda development team, it remains to be seen how well the Dunmer's surreal and convoluted lore will be implemented, or how similar the former locations from Morrowind will be - either from the blasted ashlands of Vvardenfell, or at the prosperous trade ports of Solstheim. Nevertheless it's a welcome addition to Skyrim's repertiore of content and a nice homage to the series' roots.
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