| The Elder Scrolls Traveler: Issue 5
|A new issue will come out every Sunday (or Saturday, for those in the US).
- Latest News
Awards, interviews, reviews and screenshots.
- Game Guide
Knights of the Nine -- Nature's Fury, Stendarr's Mercy, The Path of the Righteous, Wisdom of the Ages.
- Traveler Talk
An interview with Karoush Ghazi, owner of TweakGuides.com.
A call to webmasters: If your site's button is not on the right then why don't you affiliate with TES Traveler?
- Bug Fixer
Fixes for an Ultimate Heist Bug, and a bug with the Leyawiin Recommendation.
What better way to prepare for the arrival of Shivering Isles than with an updated patch? You can read the v1.2 patch notes here and download the PC patches here. XBOX users will need to download the patch via XBOX Live.
Those of you looking for new SI updates and info, look no further. Planet Elder Scrolls scored an interview with Todd Howard, GameIndustry.biz talks to Pete Hines, and Killer Betties has quizzed Bruce Nesmith.
If you're eagerly awaiting the PS3 version of the game then here are a few encouraging signs: Oblivion for PS3 may be in stores already. Check with your local games dealer for an arrival date. And just to make you a little more excited, Atomic Gamer, Game Informer and 1UP.com have all given the PS3 version of the game a 9.5 score, which reflects the average given to the PC version of the game. Not bad! You can also view six new screenshots of the game here.
It seems like the awards and accolades drop weekly for the girls and boys at Bethesda. Oblivion has scored the #16 spot on a list of the 25 Best PC Games of All Time, while Morrowind has snagged the #15 spot on the list of 25 Best XBOX Games of All Time.
Screenshot of the Week -- More PS3 Goodness
Last week I gave you guys a snap shot of what various people on the net are listing as their essential Oblivion mods. Now it's time to have your say. Send me a list of up to ten mods you couldn't live without, preferably with links to a download location, and include a short bit of info on what makes the mod so good. I'll publish the most popular ones next week with links to where you can download them, and we should have a pretty good idea of which mods are most being enjoyed by the TES community at the moment.
Where to send your recommendations? ledriver at gmail dot com.
Knights of the Nine -- Nature's Fury
You're now going to acquire a nifty pair of shoes: the Boots of the Crusader. This one isn't so hard. Set 'Nature's Fury' as your active quest and you'll see the Shrine of Kynareth with a map marker over it. It's west of the Ayleid ruins Fanacasecul.
Once you arrive approach priestess Avita Veshia. She's helpful but cryptic on the subject of the boots, stating that "Kynareth's creations guard her relic". The goddess will allow you access to the Boots of the Crusader, but only if you can pass the Grove of Trials. You're given one piece of advice: "Fear and respect nature and all its creations."
A map marker is now placed over the location of the grove. Follow it until you receive a quest update stating that you've reached the grove of trials. Wait a little bit and a huge bear will walk into the Grove: the Forest Guardian. It will attack.
Unlike other quests, where the solution would be to kill the bear, you need to do the opposite here. Don't strike the bear with weapon or magic - instead, do what you can to heal and avoid its blows. Not long after the combat starts you'll receive a message stating that, by not harming the bear, you've passed Kynareth's test and now have access to Kynareth's grotto.
Enter the grotto through the stone door. You'll see the boots on an altar, and two camouflaged Spriggans standing guard on either side. Don't worry about them: as you've received Kynareth's favor her guardians will not attack you. You're free to claim the boots and move on to searching out the next relic.
Knights of the Nine -- Stendarr's Mercy
In this quest, you'll be recovering the Gauntlets of the Crusader, located in the Chapel of Stendarr. Fast travel to Chorrol's North Gate and step inside the Chapel. Head to the far left corner and you'll see the gauntlets on the ground surrounded by a few flowers and candles. An attempt to lift them will yield only the message: The gauntlets are too heavy to move.
Talk to the nearby priest, Areldur, about the Gauntlets. If you ask him about their story you'll learn that after the Knight struck down the beggar, killing him, the gauntlets fell from his hands and on to the floor, unable to move. The Knight was cursed, and so all his descendents have been. Kellen, the Knights last descendent, is resting in the Chapel Hall.
Go downstairs and enter the Chapel Hall. Kellen is resting in the bedroom on the right. He thinks Areldur knows more than he says. Sometimes he seems... apologetic. He tells you to fulfill a dying man's wish and find out what Areldur knows.
Talk to Areldur again to discover that he knows. You'll discover that, in truth, he knows how to lift the curse, but is unwilling to do so. The only way to lift Kellen's curse is to take it on himself. Or, for someone else to do that... will you do it?
To get the gauntlets you're going to have to commit a small act of self-sacrifice. Pray at the Chapel Altar and accept the power to take on Kellen's curse. You'll receive the power 'Lay Hands' which can be accessed in your spells tab. Head down to where Kellen rests and use the ability on him as you would a touch spell. You'll feel weary and drained, but Kellen feels fine for the first time in his life. He'll do a few celebratory laps of the Chapel Hall and thank you profusely.
You're now free to pick up the gauntlets, but you've acquired the 'Curse of the Consumed', which will drain your fatigue 5 points and can't be removed by ordinary means. Don't worry too much though: there'll be an opportunity to remove the curse later on in the quest line. It's not even that terrible a curse, anyway, and you probably won't even notice the difference.
Knights of the Nine -- The Path of the Righteous
The next step is to recover the Mace of Zenithar. Make sure you have the Boots of the Crusader in your inventory, as you'll need them. Travel to the Chapel of Zenithar in Leyawiin, which is closest to the West Gate. Carodus Oholin will speak to you there, saying "You're the one restoring the Knights of the Nine, aren't you?". He's impressed, and you'll soon have the chance to capitalize on that.
You need to head down into the Chapel Undercroft where the Tomb of Saint Kaladas is located. There are a number of ghosts down here, though don't fight them unless you have to, as they'll gang up on you in this confined space. Once you're able proceed to the West end of the undercroft and pray at the Shrine to Saint Kaladas and you'll be transported to a dark, ethereal realm.
The reason why the Knight failed to breach the chasm and "walk the faith" is that he was not wearing the holy Boots of the Crusader. Equip them and you'll be able to walk across the path of light freely and claim the Mace of Zenithar. You'll be transported back into the Undercroft.
Head back upstairs into the main Chapel and you'll receive a nasty surprise. Minions of Umaril, a new kind of Daedra, attack the Chapel. Help repel the attack. You get a brownie point if none of the NPCs present are killed. When the battle is over all but one of the corpses will disappear. You can claim a new weapon from the corpse: an Ayleid Axe. In the wake of the battle Carodus will pledge himself to your service.
Knights of the Nine -- Wisdom of the Ages
Your next target is the Shield of the Crusader. This quest is longer and a little more complex than the others, so I thought it was fitting to leave it til last.
Make this your active quest and head to Fort Bulwark near the Black Marsh border. Enter the ruined tower and deal with the two sorcerors there. Proceed through the door into the Fort.
You can detour from the quest-route I'll detail here if you want to pick up loot while you're in the Fort. These, however, are simply the actions required to complete the quest. Follow the bright blue line on the above map, dealing with any Sorcerors you encounter. When you reach the north-western room read the Conjurer's Note on the desk. It provides some background to the search for the Shield, but the most important line is this: Take note of the candles on the walls if you would pass through.
Turn the lever near the desk and follow the blue line to a newly opened gate and through it until you hit a balcony with another lever. Turn the lever and drop down into the room below (or backtrack to that room, if you can't get over the edge) and follow the purple line back onto the walkway and through the newly opened central gate. This is where you'll encounter the candles mentioned in the Conjurer's note. This is a cool little puzzle. If you want to try and solve it yourself, do so now. The next paragraph will detail the solution.
The candles on the wall represent which pressure plate you need to step on. For example, if there is one candle, you step on the first pressure plate from the left, in that row. If two candles, you step on the second pressure plate from the left. The pattern for this room is as such, with O meaning a pressure plate to avoid, and X meaning one to step on as part of your route across the floor. You'll hear the sound of stone moving against stone if you've stepped on a correct plate, and a shutting sound if you misstep:
X O O
O O X
O X O
X O O
If you cross the floor successfully the gate at the end of the room will open and grant you access to the second area of Fort Bullwark. You're getting closer to the prize, but you're not there yet.
Welcome to the second area of Fort Bulwark. Head forwards until you reach a cell with a lever in front of it and a Redguard pleading for your help inside. Free the Redguard and speak with him. Sir Thedret was captured by the Conjurers as he searched for the shield. He's been tortured repeatedly in order to illicit information about the wherabouts of the Shield, but has not yet given them what he knows. In thanks, however, he will tell you: "When the eyes of the Guardians are upon you, Julianos will keep you safe". You'll learn what this means soon enough.
Follow the blue line until you reach a room with two walkways and a repeating dart trap on the roof. Make a save before you try to bypass the trap, as it'll deal a lot of damage if you get caught in it. When passing over the first walkway, wait until the darts have just passed by and run across the walkway to the wall on the left. Wait there until the darts pass by again and run across the second walkway. Pull the lever to open the gate and proceed onwards. The passage will open up into a large chamber containing five statues and a few conjurers. Defeat the conjurers so that you're able to consider your options.
The doorway leading to the next area of Fort Bullwark is currently locked, but this room contains the means of opening it. Notice the four statues arranged around a small circle on the ground, in front of a larger statue. They are all facing different directions. Now remember "When the eyes of the guardians are upon you...". You need to activate the switch on the side of each Guardian until it is facing the central circle. Once they are all facing the circle directly, step on to the circle. The flames on either side of the grand statue will be extinguished and the door to the next room is now openable. Proceed into the final area of Fort Bulwark: Area 3.
Put away your weapon and put on your thinking cap. This area doesn't contain any enemies, but it does contain a cool puzzle, unlike any you would have seen in Oblivion before.
Proceed into a blocked chamber with a large chest in the middle and eight statues and smaller chests around the walls. This is your puzzle, and the final barrier to the Shield of the Crusader.
The chests around the periphery of the room are empty, while activating the statues does nothing. The puzzle begins in the center of the room. Stand on the pressure plate and you'll see an item appear above one of the chests around the periphery of the room. You can't take the item, rather it signifies which piece of Rodgar's Equipment belongs in that chest. Opening the central chest will reveal a piece of Rodgar's Equipment you can take out of the chest. Stand on the pressure plate and an item marker will appear above one of the chests. Place the piece of equipment inside that chest. It will disappear, and a new item will appear in the central chest.
Your goal is to put each piece of Rodgar's equipment in the chest where it belongs. The more times you stand on the pressure plate and repeat the above process, the more chests will reveal the item they are built for. Remember which chest takes what item. When you get that item, place it in the chest that takes it, even if it is not the one that lights up when you stand on the pressure plate. The chest will glow and the statue will turn around. You no longer have to worry about placing that item anywhere, and it will not appear in the central chest.
Here is an example of how the process might go. You step on the pressure plate and Rodgar's Stone, which looks like a Varla stone, appears above the first chest on your right. You open the central chest and it contains Rodgar's Hammer. You put Rodgar's Hammer in the chest with Rodgar's Stone above it and it disappears. You head back to the pressure plate and it reveals the chest that takes Rodgar's Book. You open the central chest and it contains Rodgar's Stone. You remember which chest takes Rodgar's Stone: the first on your right. You put the stone in that chest and it lights up, the statue turns around. It might sound complicated, but the process will make more sense when you do it. It's a simply memory game, really.
Once you've placed all eight pieces of Rodgar's Equipment in the corresponding chest the doorway behind the central chest will open. Proceed into the next room where you'll see the Shield of the Crusader on an altar, surrounded by some assorted loot. Take it -- its certainly been hard earned.
Proceed through either of the archways on either side of the altar and follow it through to another door. This door will deposit you back in Area 1 of Fort Bulwark. Rejoin the blue line and follow it out of the complex. Now that you've collected all the relics you have information on you're told to head back to the Priory of the Nine to discover your next step.
We'll pick up here next week.
Got a gameplay tip for Oblivion fans?
Send your tips to ledriver at gmail dot com.
TRAVELER TALKAn interview with Karoush Ghazi,BUG FIXER
owner and author of TweakGuides.com,
author of the Oblivion Tweak Guide.
Could you introduce yourself?
My name is Koroush Ghazi and I am the owner and sole author of TweakGuides.com, a site which been up and running since April 2004. I'm 35 years old, I live in Canberra, Australia, and I have a bit of passion for all things tech-related.
How and when did you first discover the Elder Scrolls games?
My first encounter with an Elder Scrolls game was with Morrowind. I'd been hearing a lot of great things about it, and given it was going to have a delayed release in Australia, I ordered the US import version and started playing it a couple of weeks after it came out in June 2002. I was absolutely amazed at the way in which the game was so immersive, so atmospheric and detailed in both plot and visual elements. I'd had no background in the Elder Scrolls universe, but fortunately that didn't stop me enjoying the game.
Given how strenuous the game was at the time, I then applied my still-developing knowledge of PC to writing a tweak guide for Morrowind, which I first posted on the official Elder Scrolls forums (under the nick PersianImmortal). It was then picked up and published on a site called TweakTown. That was the first tweak guide I did, so Morrowind was directly responsible for getting me into guide writing!
What kind of effort was involved in writing the Oblivion Tweak Guide?
It took a lot of research and testing. Especially since I got the guide out only a couple of weeks or so after the game was released. So while everyone else was enjoying themselves playing this amazing new game, I had to discipline myself to only play the game for the purposes of testing out tweaks, settings and to get a feel for how the game engine works. As I say, it took around two weeks of testing every single .ini setting, trying to work out what made the game tick, reading the official Elder Scrolls forums and email feedback I'd been receiving before I could finalise and release the guide.
I have to say however that it was one of the few guides I enjoyed writing, given how magnificent the game is - even one year after its release it still ranks as my all-time favorites. I felt I had to do the game justice, so the guide is a bit longer and more detailed, but it's proven very popular and I've received a huge amount of positive feedback from it.
Have you had any other experiences with the Elder Scrolls community?
I did interact with the community quite a bit back in 2002-03 when Morrowind first came out and peaked in popularity. To be honest I spent most of my time explaining how to make the game run faster, and arguing with people that the game was not "totally buggy" just because it crashed on their particular system or ran very slowly. I did dabble with a few mods, but I enjoyed the vanilla Morrowind more than enough as it was.
With Oblivion I again re-entered the Elder Scrolls forums, albeit briefly as there were some issues with people once again claiming the game to be buggy, and that it was impossible to run it smoothly, etc. Rather than argue with them, I let my guide and various Oblivion videos I made do the talking.
I've found that with Oblivion the modding community in particular has really excelled. Whether it's because the game is more popular, the tools are easier to use, or the modders are more skilled I don't know. But there are several mods which I immediately started using (and are listed on page 4 of my guide) which I would consider "essential" for anyone playing Oblivion. To this day there are some genuinely amazing mods available which make what is a truly legendary game even more enjoyable.
In the end though full credit goes to the dedicated Elder Scrolls team at Bethesda for creating a game so rich, detailed and immersive that even non-RPGers and those new to the Elder Scrolls universe are drawn in by its excellence.
Thanks for your time, Karoush.
If you haven't already, download the v1.2 patch which has just been released. It will protect you from a number of glitches and bugs present in the original game.
Markku has sent me a PC solution for this bug:
The Ultimate Heist Bug 1
At the end of the final cut-scene the player does not leave cinematic mode. Countess Umbranox is sitting strangely in her chair and the Gray Fox leaves without passing on his reward.
His solution: Enter the console with ~ and type player.placeatme 00014653. This will summon the Gray Fox and he will finish his dailog after that.
Dan was having this problem:
Mages Guild: Leyawiin Recommendation, Bug 2
Players are able to pass Kalthar in Fort Blueblood. He knocked down Kalthar, sending him unconscious before the dialog was initiated, then left the area and was unable to get back in to reach Kalthar. Dagail will not acknowledge you have the amulet unless you've spoke to Kalthar.
The v1.2 patch will preven this problem from occuring, but if it has already occured, there are two possible PC solutions:
1. Open the console by pressing ~ and type TCL and hit enter. This gives you the ability to fly through walls and doors. Go up to the locked door and run through it as if it weren't there, and you should have access to Kalthar.
2. Open up the console, type ~ and enter
setstage MG07Leyawiin 70 -- the game will then proceed as if you've spoken to Kalthar.
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Please submit unsolved bugs or bug fixes to ledriver @ gmail dot com.
Unsolved bugs should be submitted in this format:
Description of bug:
Platform (PC or XBOX360?):
Have you downloaded the latest patch?:
Have you tried anything so far to fix it?:
I don't have much for you this week, unfortunately. I did another chore for the Mages' guild, which meant passing through Wellspring Cave in order to try and find some wood for a Mages' staff. Of course, the Mages' guild had no idea there were necromancers in Wellspring Cave, but it shouldn't take them as a surprise. It seems to me that as soon as the guild decides to send me somewhere, a whole bunch of Necromancers appear. Just my luck, eh?
I'll be honest with you in admitting why I haven't produced much work this week. I got my mages' staff, and it's enchanted with the power to paralyze. I've spent pretty much all week hiding out in the shadows at the top of staircases and paralysing people just as they're about to finish walking up the stairs. Its also resulted in a few broken bones, but not any important ones. And all the people I paralysed had done bad things, so they deserved it. Or at least, I'm sure they would have, at some point in the future. Everyone does something bad eventually, right?
This is one for the collectors among you. Meaning it has no real practical use. I'm off to watch some more people fall down stairs, catch you later.
This week's Loremaster is Sotha Sil.
The Ayleids: Heartland High Elves
Who are the Ayleids?
The Ayleids (or Heartland High elves) are a breed of Mer that lived in present-day Cyrodiil. They were known to be brutal slavemasters and a constantly warring people. The Ayleids also revered four elements: earth, water, air and light. Fire was considered to be a weak form of light and the Ayleidic peoples despised it. It was presumed Ayleids disappeared after the Siege of White Gold tower, which once was Ayleid, in 1E 243.
Where are they now?
Alessia's revolution killed many of the Ayleids, but in "The Last King of the Ayleids", author Hermina Cinna states that rebel Ayleid lords aided Alessia, and were rewarded the lands of defeated enemies. Later, Ayleid princes served as vassals of Alessia in Ayleid ruled kingdoms. This relationship was shaky from the very beginng, and soon these surviving communities were destroyed by the "Alessian Order" of Marukh. Surviving Ayleids fled to nearby Valenwood and the Camoran dynasty.
1. The Nu-Mantia Intercept is a series of letters sent to Ocato relating to the Ayleids. Analysis of said letters tell us a series of facts, but the most important one is this: The Ayleids are not gone.
But are they a threat to the Empire? Who knows? They are in hiding now, and not much more can be said until more information is unearthed. I would assume that the Ayleids are re-building their shattered Empire and may one day take back what was once theirs.
2. Imperial Theory: This theory is the belief of the common Imperial citizens, that the Ayleids are all gone and never coming back. How can these idiots believe this when so much evidence is around them?
Ayleids in Oblivion
Some people believe that Mankar Camoran is an Ayleid. This may be possible, considering his palace is an Ayleid archetecture and only Ayleidic magicks would allow him to wear the Amulet of Kings. Mankar also claims to have spoken to Dagon and recieved the Mysterium Xarxes from him. Ayleids were known to meet and make pacts with Daedra Lords. Not to mention his great hatred of the Empire.
A very small few claim the Ocato is an Ayleid. This can actually be very believeable, because it says in the Nu-Mantia Intercept that the Ayleids are not gone and will rule over the Empire one day. Look who is running the show during and after the Oblivion crisis.
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Reproduced with permission from the author.
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