With Bethesda now working on some major new releases, Game Rant takes a look at some of the potential locations of the next game in The Elder Scrolls series.
Recently, Bethesda released a piece of news that turned a lot of heads within the video game community. The company revealed that it is currently working on three big games, with executive producer Todd Howard suggesting that two of the games are “bigger than anything” Bethesda had done up to that point. To add to the excitement, Howard then stated that Bethesda actually has 7 games on the go at this moment.
Understandably, the big question on many gamers’ lips was exactly what these games would be, with many fans of Bethesda’s work hoping that one of the titles would be a new game in the Elder Scrolls series. After all, even though Skyrim still manages to pull in a huge number of users, The Elder Scrolls players have long been hoping for a new game in the series, and it feels like the time is right for another installment in the acclaimed fantasy RPG franchise. Even though Todd Howard tried to dampen rumors on the game’s status last year, that’s done little to stop chatter among fans.
Regardless of when the next Elder Scrolls game will be available, many gamers have been wondering exactly where The Elder Scrolls will go next, moving on from the frozen region of Skyrim to another part of the Tamriel continent. Even though Cyrodiil and Skyrim were extensively explored in Oblivion and Skyrim respectively, and large portions of High Rock, Hammerfell, and Morrowind were the focus of Daggerfall and Morrowind, there are still plenty of provinces left to focus on. After all, although Tamriel is available in The Elder Scrolls Online, nothing compares to the feel of a main series game. Here’s a look at the potential locations of the next game in the franchise.
Valenwood is the region that acts as home to the Bosmer, and it’s easy to see why the area could be a great place to set the next Elder Scrolls game. Primarily made of up forests and mangrove swamps, players could expect to contend with thick, maze-like areas to explore, and there’s no doubt there would be plenty of secrets to uncover among the mysteries of Valenwood. Much like in Skyrim, an Elder Scrolls game set in Valenwood would consist of large, dangerous portions of wilderness, with pockets of civilization scattered across the map.
That said, Valenwood would still have plenty of variety, from more tropical regions through to lush plains, and even some more arid areas mainly devoid of the lush greenery for which Valenwood is known. In short, the region could provide a great variety in terms of locations, while there could be enough oddities to make fans of Morrowind call back to the general sense of otherworldliness that the third Elder Scrolls game provided.
Valenwood could certainly provide a unique setting, between the huge, roving forest city of Falinesti and the strange, ape-like Imga that live in the province. Meanwhile, the Green Pact of the Bosmer – which forbids them from using parts of the forest to build settlements and even means any creature killed must be consumed within three days – means that not only would locations within the game have an individual feel, but the player’s own actions in the game could also change the way the character is seen in the eyes of the denizens of Valenwood. Breaking the rules of the Green Pact could have very different consequences depending on who sees the player commit these acts.
An added bonus of Valenwood would also be its proximity to another of the lesser-explored areas of Tamriel: the Summerset Isles. The isles are home to the Altmer, and as of the events of Skyrim, the Aldmeri Dominion that rules the isles has hugely grown in power, as shown by the Thalmor persecuting Talos worshippers in the game. The Thalmor were apparently acting in a similar fashion in Valenwood, trying to shape the region for other purposes, which no doubt hugely conflicts with the Green Pact itself.
It’s here, then, that a context for a great Elder Scrolls game may lie, with the player thrown into a conflict between the traditions of Valenwood and the official control of the Aldmeri Dominion. Choosing one of the two sides could work in a similar fashion to the Stormcloak or Imperial choice in Skyrim, or even make up a larger plot in its own right. Either way, there’s surely plenty of potential to be found in Valenwood.
Of course, Bethesda could always cut out the middle man and send the player right off to the Summerset Isles to focus on the Altmer immediately. From the events of Skyrim, it appears as though the isles are now a major seat of power in Tamriel, with the Aldmeri Dominion covering a large portion of the continent following the dramatic Great War. As such, now could be an apt time for Bethesda to explore the home of the Altmer in more detail, following on from seeing the beginning of the end of one empire in Oblivion and seeing how another operates in the sixth installment of the franchise.
The actual geography of the Summerset Isles would also be interesting to explore. The region is made up of the Isle of Summerset, Auridon, Artaeum, and Eyevea, and each holds its own intriguing aspects for the player. The main island itself is home to the city of Alinor, and with it the Crystal Tower – a huge monument to early settlers of the islands. While Auridon holds the cities of Firsthold and Skywatch, and with it no doubt plenty of other adventures, even the smaller two islands have plenty of history, too. In particular, Artaeum could be of interest, given its place as the home of the Psijic Order; those who played the College of Winterhold questline in Skyrim will no doubt remember them.
Although some details about the Summerset Isles are available, a full picture of the region has never really been given. Overall, the islands themselves are still largely unknown, aside from brief descriptions of specific locations, with the High Elves remaining suspicious of outside influence and keeping things in-house where possible. This, in itself, would be an enticing opportunity for fans of the series.
What’s more, the Summerset Isles have plenty of opportunity to bring in some much talked-about aspects of The Elder Scrolls lore. In particular, the isles of Thras are dangerously nearby, and with the isles comes the threat of the Sload. This slug-like race of creatures are among the most feared and hated in Tamriel, unleashing a deadly plague across the continent that is still not forgotten. If Bethesda decides to set the sixth Elder Scrolls game in the Summerset Isles, it could provide a good opportunity for players to finally come into contact with the Sload.