Tamriel Rebuilt is a major, two-decade old modding project that aims to complete the mainland of the Morrowind province in the The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind engine, in accordance with the lore and vision of the original game. We develop the province as a set of expansions, many of which have already been released to players and include more than 360 quests.
By necessity, Tamriel Rebuilt relies on the lore and aesthetics of TES III: Morrowind, which it holds as supreme over the more recent lore decisions and retcons of TES IV, TES V or Elder Scrolls Online. This is mainly required to create a consistent game world within TES III but is also more agreeable to us Morrowind grognards. However, in order to fill out the remaining parts of this giant province, we do like to draw on bits of lore from both earlier and later games. Mostly, we prefer to rely on games like An Elder Scrolls Legend: Battlespire (1997), The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard (1998) and The Elder Scrolls Travels: Shadowkey (2004), since these ones largely shared their development team and lore building vision with that of TES III: Morrowind (read more on our lore page).
One of our lead developers, Cicero, is particularly enamored with the elaborate daedric lore present in Battlespire and has been working hard to bring more daedric content into TR. For this month’s teaser post, I asked Cicero to highlight some ways in which Tamriel Rebuilt harkens back to this intriguing but lesser-known Elder Scrolls title.
An Elder Scrolls Legend: Battlespire contained many lesser servants of the daedric prince Mehrunes Dagon – the main antagonist in the game – that were never seen again in the mainline series. Such examples include the Vermai, Morphoid, Herne, Daedra Counts, and Daedra Lords.
Tamriel Rebuilt aims to eventually recreate all of the daedra seen in Battlespire and has already made quite a lot of progress towards that goal. Below are some examples of creatures already present in our development files or in late stages of work.
Xivilai Moath in Battlespire Level 5 (left) and the TES IV-inspired TR model by Aleist3r, Cicero and Rats (right).
Moath of clan Xivilai is a Greater Daedra Lord in Battlespire, and one example of the many Daedric Lords within the clan. TES IV co-opted the first name of this daedra in order to create the Xivilai species. While TR will stick with Battlespire’s take on Xivilai lore, our 3D model of the Xivilai is inspired by TES IV’s more unique visual. Tamriel Rebuilt will offer players a chance to meet others from clan Xivilai on Mundus, even within Morrowind. These daedra are incredibly tough, especially as they have a pact with the Frost Atronachs to aid them in their battles.
The Vermai are the least intelligent of Dagon’s forces, capable of vocalizing little besides unintelligible grunts. They are primarily used for patrolling duties as Dagon can not trust them with more intensive tasks. The Vermai, however, have massive claws to make up for this shortcoming.
The Morphoid in Battlespire (left) and a work-in-progress TR version by Aleist3r, Rats and Cicero (right).
The Morphoid has a similar build to the Scamp (same for the Herne, below) meaning that these daedra were likely morphed by Dagon from a group of Scamps. While Scamps are useful for mischief and Hernes for hunting, the Morphoid was made primarily to inflict abuse – they have an obsessive need to brawl with anything that moves. As such, the Morphoids are strictly used as muscle, mostly for locking down a particular area.
The Herne in Battlespire (left) and a work-in-progress TR version by Aleist3r, Rats and Cicero (right).
The Herne likely represents an upgrade for the lowly Scamp to fit another sphere the Lord of Destruction embodies, namely hunting. Predictably, they also have a connection to Hircine – in Battlespire, they are implied to act out the Wild Hunt on behalf of Hircine, who may be acting as Dagon's general himself. As such, the Herne cannot be killed during a hunt and will not stop until the prey is dead.
Rock Chisel Clannfear
Rock Chisel concept from Battlespire (left) and the Rock Chisel Clannfear in TR by Aleist3r (right).
The Rock Chisel Clannfear is something that did not make it into Battlespire proper, but is instead present only in its concept art. Most likely, it was the original design for the normal Clannfear, which later got beefed up and developed an appetite for human flesh, instead of rocks. In Tamriel Rebuilt, the Rock Chisel is back as a smaller and weaker, but faster cousin to the vanilla Clannfear. Dagon uses these servants to tunnel into the earth, almost like a living daedric boring machine. Numbers of them are used to dig out large caverns or mine for resources.
The seducer is a particularly edgy slice of Battlespire’s vision. They are non-affiliated daedra, almost like mercenaries of the void who serve different Daedric Princes depending on the circumstances. Some examples of their employers are Molag Bal, Nocturnal and Mehrunes Dagon. The Seducers take the form of a mortal to seduce adventurers to come closer, only to meet their end – despite the alluring looks, they are very dangerous foes, on par with the Golden Saint.
The Dark Seducer is a more powerful version of the common Seducer. They are servants of Mehrunes Dagon, seduced by the prince himself, and rewarded with wings for their devotion to him.
There are many more daedra in the works besides these ones, and not just from Battlespire, but from the series as a whole up to the release of Morrowind. This includes the Hellhound from TES I: Arena, the Flesh and Iron Atronachs from TES II: Daggerfall, the Guardian and the Sload-controlled Vermai variant from TESA: Redguard, as well as others from Battlespire, like the Daedra Lords and Nocturnal’s unknown Spirit/Shade daedra. We also seek to replicate unused concepts for daedra in Morrowind, such as the old Golden Saint and Hunger designs.
Obviously, many will want to summon these daedra as their own servants. Unfortunately, summoning spells in vanilla TES III are hardcoded and new daedra cannot be added. However, the TR team is contemplating an optional add-on using the Morrowind Script Extender to allow doing just that. Once OpenMW supports similar features in its Lua framework, we will provide the same feature to the users of this new engine.
Hunger concept from Morrowind’s concept art (left), repurposed for the Devourer daedra by Lamb Shark (right).
There are many items in vanilla TES III: Morrowind that originated in Battlespire. The most famous ones are the artifacts Scourge, Spear of Bitter Mercy, Cuirass of the Savior’s Hide, and of course, the Daedric Crescent Blade. Tamriel Rebuilt adds even more of these to interact with, including Battlespire armor, weapons, scrolls, spells and miscellaneous items. Below are some finished and in-progress examples.
Daedric Sigil Amulets
Daedric Wards in Battlespire (upper left), Tamriel Rebuilt versions by Cicero (upper right) and Sigil Amulets by Aleist3r (below).
Most Daedric Sigil amulets in Battlespire and Tamriel Rebuilt are used to give the holder a quick buff. However, special versions, known as Daedric Sigil Amulets of Entry, are used more like keys. The daedra use conjuration magic to set barriers that take the form of a Daedric Ward. These need to be dispelled by a specific amulet of entry – an Ayem amulet for an Ayem Ward, for example – whereas non-amulet-holders are not allowed past, and may even be fatally injured. These amulets are valuable to Tamriel Rebuilt, as they help diversify our dungeons with new types of puzzles – instead of being able to lockpick your way through every door, the wards and amulets act as a more palatable alternatives to Oblivion’s unpickale locks. Notably, as long as the player carries, for example, an Ayem Amulet of Entry, they can remove all Ayem Wards in the world – so, don’t sell a Daedric Sigil amulet after using it only once!
Magicka Resartus (and other restoration crystals)
The Magicka Resartus is a prized diamond shaped crystal that can be used more than once to restore your magicka. Other similar crystals exist to restore health, fatigue, strength and other attributes. Once the crystal has been used several times, it is discarded like a potion, but rest assured – others can be found. The advantage of the Magicka Resartus is, therefore, in its smaller mass compared to an equivalent amount of potions, whereas the downside is its relative rarity.
Also present in the picture above are the Ice Crystal and Fire Opal gemstones. These did not appear in Battlespire per se; however, when joining either the Frost or the Fire Daedra’s side, they would gift you an armor created from either of these gemstones. In TR, the gems themselves will be found exclusively on the bodies of the rare Monarch Deadra, being more powerful versions of the standard Atronachs. The Fire Opal Helm and the Ice Crystal Greaves will also make a future appearance in TR as artifacts for players to find.
The Savior’s Hide
In Battlespire, the Savior’s Hide was a full set of armor, despite vanilla Morrowind implementing only the cuirass. The armor was another one of Malacath’s creations in his bid to repel the dominance of the other Daedric Princes. Tamriel Rebuilt will implement the remaining pieces of the armor set, scattering it across the Telvannis District in the hands of treasure seekers that escaped Tel Fyr’s Corpusarium treasure hunt.
Sword of the Moon Reiver
The Moon Reiver as seen in Battlespire Level 6 (above) and the TR interpretation by Aleist3r, Cicero and Nex (below).
The Moon Reiver is Dagon’s essence in blade form. If someone was to know Mehrunes Dagon’s Neonymic, wear the Savior’s Hide in its entirety, and hold the Moon Reiver, Dagon would be helpless before them. In Battlespire, this weapon is depicted as one of the most powerful in existence; so it is in Tamriel Rebuilt. The Moon Reiver is currently held by the dremora Lord Methats and may already be obtained by a player who delves deep enough into our Aanthirin content. Be warned, though – a fight for the sword would mean death for anyone who doesn’t wield power equal to a demi-god’s.
Staff of the Typos Sophia
The Staff of the Typos Sophia is not a well-known artifact, but it was depicted as a special item in Battlespire and will, thus, appear again in TR. The staff was originally owned by Clarentavious Valisious, the Chief Artificer of the Emperor. As Clarentavious had a pact with Lord Methats, the Dremora lord would very much like to get his hands on the staff again.
Dremora Methats from Battlespire Level 1 (left) and a TR model of its pauldron by Lamb Shark (righthand pauldron on the righthand image).
These special pauldrons are unique to the daedra Lord Methats, and may be rewarded to a mortal foolhardy enough to enter his service.
Boots of Peace
Another special item from Battlespire, not much is known about the Boots of Peace. Tamriel Rebuilt, therefore, invented its own background on the item (see the “Compendium of Lost Artifacts” below).
Bow of Heaven’s Hail
In a similar category as the Boots of Peace, TR will use the opportunity to provide its own lore for this minor Battlespire artifact.
Already implemented mithril weapons and shield by Cicero (left) and a concept for a full set of mithril armor by Xeno (right).
Mithril weapons and armor were present in Arena, Daggerfall and Battlespire lore, though they were only vaguely defined as of elven make. There have been debates within TR and its sister-effort, Project Tamriel, on whether to include this obvious Lord of the Rings reference. However, given the profusion of other accepted Tolkienisms in TES lore, the needle points towards its inclusion. In TR, the blue-colored mithril metal is high-quality Breton workmanship, derived from the experiments of the Direnni elves. To create it, Breton smiths meld iron and spellstone (magical residue that seeps into the earth). In a gameplay sense, it acts as a niche cousin to adamantium, but with different weaknesses and strengths, designed to cater more towards enchanters, rather than warriors.
Enchanted Generic Items
Aside from the many artifacts, a variety of non-unique enchanted items could be found in Battlespire. To diversify dungeon rewards in TR, these Battlespire references were recently added to our random loot lists and may be viewed on this link.
Compendium of Lost Artifacts
Tying all of these additions together, The Compendium of Lost Artifacts teases and educates the player about the many new artifacts to be found in TR. It also references some artifacts from the base game that are not mentioned in prior literature. As such, it acts as the counterpart to vanilla Morrowind’s “Tamrielic Lore.” Impatient players may already take a sneak peak at the book.
More ambitious than the above items, TR already includes a surprising amount of locations inspired by Battlespire and has plans for many more.
Dremora Rathine and his master, Dremora Methats, the ruler of Battlespire level 1 (above) and the realm of Khalaan by Cicero (below).
The foremost of TR’s Battlespire-inspired content is Khalaan – a relatively large realm of Oblivion tied to old Indoril history and currently filled with daedric adventures of many sorts. Battlespire’s influence in this realm is felt in the presence of many of the above-mentioned items, as well as the identity of the realm’s Lord. Can you find the secret entrances to Khalaan in our Aanthirin expansion?
The Winged Twilight Salnamet, a helpful blacksmith in Tur Julan. Exterior work by Gnomey, NPCs by Why.
Tur Julan is an abandoned Indoril stronghold overlooking the western, Hlaalu-occupied shore of the Thirr river. The ruin is now crawling with a horde of daedric residents, summoned by the Indoril themselves as they were forced to abandon the fortress. You will have to navigate the surprisingly convoluted politics of these daedra in order to complete your tasks in Tur Julan. As in Battlespire and Khalaan, conversation with daedric antagonists and allies forms a large part of the gameplay here.
The Weir Gate in Battlespire Level 0 (left) and the one in Ebon Tower, Old Ebonheart (right). Assets by Stripes, Rubberman and Gnomey, interior work by Gnomey.
Weir Gates are some of the more valuable and advanced of the Empire’s magical tools. These are used to instantly transport high-ranking officials across the imperial capitals of all the provinces. Accordingly, a Weir Gate is also present in Morrowind, and can already be found in Old Ebonheart’s Ebon Tower. A Weir Gate was also present inside the Battlespire, accessed via the pillar of light in Cyrodiil. Unsurprisingly, Province: Cyrodiil's long-term plans call for making the ruins of Battlespire accessible through this gate.
The Soul Cairn
The Soul Cairn from Battlespire Level 3 (above) and Cicero’s tests of a TES III Soul Cairn (middle and below).
Making the Soul Cairn accessible in TES III will give the players a different outlook on the mechanics of death in the Elder Scrolls universe, compared to the Dunmer mythos. Tentative plans are to include the Soul Cairn in a potential new Necrom Mages Guild questline, though it is not yet 100% clear if and when the guild will be added. Our eventual take on the Soul Cairn will be inspired by the Temple of Love in Battlespire, instead of the magical wasteland in TES V: Dawnguard.
The lords of the Soul Cairn are the Ideal Masters, who manifest themselves as perfect gemstones. In TR, you will be able to engage these entities in conversation, as you could in Battlespire.
The most exciting items are the various daedric adventures planned for the future of our mod. Recently, Cicero has conceptualized many province-spanning quests for lesser-known Daedra Lords and the Daedra Princes that do not feature in Morrowind’s religion, but who nevertheless have dealings in the province. Implementation for a couple of these new adventures is planned to begin in the coming months.
Legion of Shadow
The Legion of Shadow quest idea brings together many characters, items, and lore from Battlespire and explains how the various artifacts found their way into Morrowind. This quest complex will allow you to enter the service of a number of Daedra Lords or other interested parties in search of the artifacts lost in the destruction of the Battlespire or afterwards, and to resolve many of the lingering conflicts from this event, for better or for worse. Those interested may take a look at the brainstorming page, though bear in mind that some changes to these current plans are guaranteed.
Clavicus Vile's Quest
The Flask of Lillandril in Redguard (left) and TR (right) – a legendary artifact capable of absorbing any magic, first discovered on Summerset Isle. Model by Cicero and PikachunoTM.
The Guardian Daedra were last seen serving Clavicus Vile in Redguard (left). In TR (right), players may already find these tough daedra guarding particularly rich loot. Model by Aleist3r.
The quest planned for Clavicus Vile will contain several nods towards Redguard, such as a soul-harvesting sload necromancer, the Guardian Daedra, and the Flask of Lillandril. Otherwise, it is inspired by Morrowind and Oblivion lore, such as the presence of N'Gasta's tower near Dagon Fel in TES III, the scamp Creeper's alternate identity as Barbas in TES IV, and the Dwemer councilor Bluthanch from the Chronicles of Nchuleft, whose spectre may still haunt the fortress of Hendor Stardumz. More can be found here.
The Frost Monarch is a stronger variant of the Frost Atronach, first mentioned in the book Tamrielic Lore. Eventually, we aim to add stronger, monarch varieties of all the atronach daedra. WIP model by Arcimaestro Antares and Rats.
Nocturnal still wants to get even with Mehrunes Dagon after the invasion of the Shade Perilous prior to the events of Battlespire. Her wrath extends to Dagon's servants that fled after the assault on Battlespire failed. In TR, the player will be tasked with hunting down two very powerful elemental daedra and can be rewarded with items first seen in Battlespire. More can be found here.
The Oghma Infinium contains dangerous knowledge from Hermaeous Mora. It has appeared in Arena, Daggerfall and later TES games. Model by Cicero and Ashtaar.
Sanguine's Rose is a powerful summoning artifact given as a gift to his most valuable champions. WIP model by Ashtaar and Cicero.
Concepts for Hermeaus Mora's and Sanguine's quests, too, have been posted on the website, and the remaining princes will follow suit after some more planning. These quests will span the entire province and will also have players revisit Vvardenfell, to help emphasize the Daedra's wide-ranging interests and to better integrate TR with Vvardenfell.
These were only some of the already implemented or planned examples of our Battlespire-inspired content. Expect many more items, lore, and enemies from Battlespire, Redguard and other early games of the Elder Scrolls franchise to find their way into TR in the future.
Meanwhile, progress on our next upcoming expansions, Dominions of Dust and Embers of Empire, continues at a steady pace. In terms of the former, progress has recently picked up on the Imperial Legion and Tribunal Temple questlines, as well as several miscellaneous quests. In terms of the latter, all interiors and NPCs have now been implemented, while dialogue and quest writing is ongoing.
If you would like to help with daedric content, our upcoming expansions, or any other aspect of Tamriel Rebuilt development (no prior experience needed!), or are interested in following us more closely, come join us on our Discord server.
Nice news post. Fantastic
Nice news post. Fantastic work setting it up again.
The devourer is really something. That thing is for sure going to be my favourite mod implemented creature.
Keep it up.
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Awesome information! ...btw "(read more on our lore page)" wrong link! in firrst paragraph...
Whoops, now fixed!
Whoops, now fixed!
Oooh Moon Reiver..
All this looks great; excited to see it implemented.
Where is Lord Methats? I want that sword...
The glory of mortals is humility.
- Tezrel Logoth
In the realm of Spoiler:
In the realm of
. Play the Almas Thirr Temple questline to find out more.