Mark's Grand Telvannis Redo Proposal

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Mark
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There are a few ideas thrown around about the Telvannis redo that I don’t agree with, so I’d like to specify what these are, why I dislike them, and what I would like to see instead. This is a large-scale proposal for the Telvannis redo, including ideas for new landmass shape, new regions, and a new structure for the house that includes multiple different councils.

To be clear, this is NOT a proposal calling for a premature redo. I realize that the Telvannis redo is slated to be among the final things we release. Nonetheless, this should help to solidify a high concept for the Telvannis district, so that our future planning for other areas takes these ideas into account, and we can create a more cohesive Morrowind.

Finally, I have as of 2023 created a Future Telvannis Questline Structure Proposal that was designed in tandem with this larger proposal. Check it out to visualize the pacing of the greater questline for Great House Telvanni.

What do I dislike about some existing ideas?

The Parliament of Bugs, Gothren and the Sadrith Mora Council

While I can somewhat understand the appeal of having only one council (excluding Gothren’s, we’ll get to that shortly), the Parliament of Bugs, and most of Telvannis being wild and unstructured, I really think this undermines the Telvanni and totally misses the opportunity for tons of localized content. The Telvanni are by nature divided and decentralized. Having one central Parliament of Bugs without other councils, however removed from day-to-day affairs as they may be, defeats the nature of the Telvanni and their purpose. They are rarely united in anything, and there are many different characterizations, not just one catch-all. For this reason, I think there should be multiple councils, which I will explain later.

With the previous idea that (besides Gothren’s council) there should only be the Parliament of Bugs, it was necessary to have some explanation of the Vvardenfell council. Gothren’s claim of the title of Archmagister and creation of a new council is a forced idea, a dodgy excuse for why TR is different from (and bigger than) vanilla. With multiple councils, we avoid this problem, retaining the great characters on Vvardenfell’s council without having to give explanations for “why they followed Gothren”. They don’t have to be relevant to the larger plot themselves, and can exist as a council of mostly old and established mage-lords that give insight into local affairs. 

Furthermore, this does two amazing things for gameplay. It (1) removes the tacky Vvardenfell/Mainland static split, and (2) gives the player better structured quest content that encourages exploring and learning about all the different things happening in Telvannis. I propose that we have five councils total, all presided over by the Parliament of Bugs.

Council Proposals

There are five separate councils instead of one. I realize this creates many more masters who will all need Hortator quests. This seems overwhelming, but many of them can be freely given or just bribed because many Telvanni just don’t care, so it won’t have to be too massive a quest. In terms of ranks, we should not have “Magister” mean “claims title of Archmagister”. The way vanilla did this was illogical. If somebody really claimed the title of Archmagister, they would just call themselves Archmagister. Also, the title of Archmagister implies that an Archmagister is the greatest of all Magisters (meaning, there should be multiple Magisters). Magister should come to mean the leader of each council. So Gothren should be demoted to Magister, not Wizard.

 

The Sadrith Mora Council

This is the council present in the vanilla game, their seat in Sadrith Mora. In “current plans”, they are reduced to “the ones who followed Gothren”, or at least the ones who Gothren decided to incorporate into his council. With my proposal, they keep their identity, and along with that almost all of their quests, barring the final one. We can very easily retcon the title of Magister, as it is only relevant in the final quest.

The characterization of this council is the same as it is in vanilla. They are the quintessential Telvanni. Neloth, Therana, Dratha, and Fyr (not a council member) are all described as being very, very old, and likewise Gothren is implied to be very established, if not old as well. They are usually characterized as being wrapped up in their studies and most of them are apathetic towards the player. Aryon is the only young one, and he introduces their second theme, politics on Vvardenfell. Frankly, what vanilla did with the Telvanni was very satisfying--it’s the reason they’re the most popular Great House--and we should keep that spirit alive with their council being practically untouched.

 

The Tel Muthada Council

“Clan Telvani is the most xenophobic of a xenophobic race, shunning all contact with outsiders, preferring to tend their herds of giant insects amid the rocky hills and islands of the extreme northeast.” - PGE1

This council encompasses xenophobic mage-lords who tend their herds of giant beetles and trade with the nearby Indoril and local Velothi in the southwestern part of Telvannis, their seat in Tel Muthada. They inhabit a region of rocky hills and trees of corkbulb, sadrith and hackle-lo.

(The bugherd Telvanni are the ones who raise giant beetles, so they’re the ones who primarily make/wear the beetle armor) 

The characterization of this council is the classic Telvanni xenophobia, along with their businesslike relationship with local Velothi and Indoril. Quests in this region really focus on these themes, and the bugherd culture of the Telvanni and Velothi who live here.

Locations:

  • Tel Muthada - Tel Muthada will be transformed from an unremarkable tower surrounded by farms into a large town where the Telvanni trade amongst themselves and with Velothi and Indoril traders who come here, oftentimes from afar, for Telvanni staples such as bug musk. They are not friendly with the Telvanni; trading and mingling occurs strictly for business. Picture a large sadrith wall, bugpens in its inner ring, with the Council Hall in the very center, where the Mouths of the council’s mage-lords stay to give the player his or her first quests for the Tel Muthada Council. The town is presided over by a steward, Llevari Telsaran (the existing leader of Tel Muthada), who keeps the city running. Similar to her current implementation, she is fair and relatively friendly to the local Dunmer, but brutal to the Empire. Her family has taken care of Tel Muthada for generations, and she takes pride in its prosperity.
  • Tel Onoria - This is the tower of Master Rilmas Athyrion, a mage-lord who controls the village of Marog and the nearby beetle herds. His family has tended the herds for centuries, and that gives him a reputation among the Velothi and the other bugherd Telvanni, so he keeps his family name. Master Rilmas Athyrion sends a Mouth to Tel Muthada.
    • Marog - In “Ruins of Kemel-Ze”, Marog was described as a small village of native Dunmer with a hetman and a local priest. This suits a Velothi village far better than a sadrith town, so it should be changed into that. The economy of the town is driven by tourism to Kemel-Ze, but many of the locals help Master Rilmas Athyrion with tending his herds of giant beetles in exchange for protection.

       

(Master Rilmas Athyrion in his Gilded Rhino Beetle Armor - Art by Feivelyn)

  • Tel Gilan - This is the tower of Master Nisa, business-friendly with the Zafirbel Trade Company in Helnim, at least before his mental decline. Now he is dementia-stricken, and he keeps mostly to his chambers, leaving the business and bugherding to his steward. Business with Helnim is healthy, but due to his mental decline and other regional factors, the future remains clouded. Master Nisa sends a Mouth to Tel Muthada.

(Master Nisa in his Glass Beetle Armor -- Art by Feivelyn)

  • Tel Darys - This is the tower of Magister Sathisi, head of the Tel Muthada Council. He is a very powerful and established bugherd, sporting a particularly extravagant set of the famous Telvanni Beetle Armor. His territory includes the Velothi villages of Andar Mok and Drethil, and a large area of land bordering the ashlands of the north, where Sathisi tends his herds. Magister Sathisi sends a Mouth to Tel Muthada and to the Parliament of Bugs in Port Telvannis.
    • Andar Mok - a quite typical Telvanni-overgrown Velothi village, like Vos, located where Heleran’s Lodge used to be. They tend to Magister Sathisi’s beetle herds in exchange for protection, and are located just outside of Tel Darys.
    • Drethil - another Velothi village that serves Magister Sathisi in exchange for protection.

(Magister Sathisi in his Ceremonial Beetle Armor -- from the Art of Morrowind)

  • Tel Tarulin - Mistress Navari is very expansionist-minded for a mainland Telvanni. She occupies a tower that was grown into an existing Indoril Ruin, and is pushing the Telvanni borders South as she extends her herding land into Indoril territory, creating some conflict between the Northern Indoril Lords and the Telvanni on the border.
    • Erethan - An Indoril-owned village and whickweat plantation that Mistress Navari took by force, coercing its citizens to tend her bugherd.

(Mistress Navari in her Bug-Throne -- Art by Feivelyn)

  • Tel Niril - Master Falen, it seems, owns large tracts of lands to herd his bugs. But he has been struggling. Since his grazing land is very close to Magister Sathisi’s, his bugherds usually disappear under mysterious circumstances. Falen has fought back on occasion, but he usually accepts Sathisi’s dominance in the area. Through the course of this Council’s questline, perhaps, the player can help Master Falen establish a reliable herd and crush Magister Sathisi once and for all. He does not own a set of Ceremonial Beetle Armor, but perhaps the player can help him acquire that.
    • Vedras - A Velothi village that is technically under the control of Master Falen, but through the course of the Tel Muthada Council questline, the player realizes that Magister Sathisi has influenced the natives there (through persuasion or magic) to undermine Falen.

 

The Llothanis Council

This council encompasses the entire eastern coast of Telvannis, with mage-lords that are older and more established than anywhere else (barring a few of the councilors on Vvardenfell and perhaps the Dust Adepts), their council seat in Llothanis. They inhabit a wild coastline that slopes down from the central ashlands, twisted forests riddled with ancient magic. There are few developed roads in this region, as this is not a place with a terribly large economy or reason to travel. The more sizable settlements are on the water, connected by boat travel, and the rest are more isolated inland. The mage-lords here are old, and they hate each other, often using magical warfare to raze towers to the ground. There are a great many towers here, both occupied and abandoned, grand and destroyed. Here there are the homes of many masters, but also the towers of mage-lords who are lower in rank. It is truly a sight to behold.

The characterization of this council is petty squabbles of the Telvanni and especially old and powerful magic. Quests in this region are largely personal and focus on individual mage-lords, not many overarching conflicts. Many Telvanni artifacts can be found here.

  • Tel Vysera - Magister Vaerin, the leader of the Llothanis Council, is a treacherous mage, just like the region he resides in. He is a master of mysticism, and vehemently opposed to the Tribunal Temple, actively defiling its sites, kidnapping and experimenting on its priests, and committing all manners of unholy acts. For this, Temple Priests all around Telvannis preach condemnation against Vaerin, and the Ordinators have put a price on his head. He lives in Tel Vysera, a Velothi fortress that had a strong Temple presence before he conquered it many centuries ago. Now it is riddled with wards and protection magics, which allow it to withstand Ordinator raids and attacks by other Telvanni. (Quest Idea: one of the other Telvanni Councilors, the Temple, House Indoril, and/or the Morag Tong asks you to kill Vaerin. When you hit him, he teleports you outside the Tower, and you have to fight your way past his guards and warding magics to get back inside and finish the job.

(Magister Vaerin floating cross-legged in his tower)

  • Llothanis - This is a city on a hill overlooking the old forests of the East. It is the main location for services along the Eastern coast, and without a ruling mage-lord or sense of real structure, the city has devolved into near-anarchy. Rival wizards in the city claim authority, leading to frequent “gang wars” and the like (think: a whole city overrun with Tel Branora’s Trerayna Dalen and similar people). The only real stability is found in the Llothanis Council Hall, where the Mouths of the Llothanis Council’s Masters stay. They care little of the city outside, which matches the region’s theme of petty infighting.
  • Velothis Haven - This was supposed to be a settlement on the east coast of the Telvanni mainland (or possibly Glen Haven in arena). It is a small Velothi settlement. This place is referenced in dialogue during the Zainab Nerevarine quest from the slave bride. It’s an open-top canton with a port, Velothi population, canal and underworks overgrown by sadrith that have overlapped and expanded the port (with the downside of making the lower levels flooded and inaccessible), waistworks residences, and a plaza converted to a farm set-up. There is a tower that has poked up through the middle of the canton, which the Velothi were hopeless to stop. The tower is known as Tel Llervu. Tel Llervu's lord is Andrano Llervu who is a sleaze that uses illusion magic to sleep around. He has a lot of kids as a result of womanizing and also illusion coming into play (chameleon, paralysis). He has a daughter known as Falura Llervu, who by accident, is a name Savile Imayn came up with for the telvanni bride for the zainab quest. Due to there being so many children, this has ended up being an actual person and so there would be two Faluras (one real one fake). Falura (the real one) is a daughter of a womanized mother who was a Velothi and Andrano. Possible quest here and also a crossover quest for the mainland and Vvardenfell. The Llervus are Redoran, but as the battle of Molag Beran described, there are Redoran that fought the Telvanni on Telvanni soil, so this could explain there being a Redoran Telvanni, a survivor who was a traitor to the Redoran that settled down and basically doubled the family by himself. Redoran are known to have affairs so this is very much in character for Andrano.
    • Tel Llervu - Master Andrano Llervu’s tower, inside of Velothis Haven.
  • Alt Bosara - sitting high up in the cliffs that descend from Morrowind’s central highlands is Alt Bosara, a beautiful Telvanni town with waterfalls and flora everywhere, spilling down to the sea. The resident mage-lord, Mistress Arvasa, is an avid environmentalist. She studies nature and learns its patterns and its entropy, that is her magical discipline. She often deals ruthlessly with those who would harm the flora and fauna within her domain. She is usually not in conflict with her southern neighbor, the Indoril lord of Telar, who leaves her alone well enough.
    • Tel Bosara - Mistress Arvasa’s tower.
  • Ranyon-ruhn - In this proposal I’ve rebranded Ranyon-ruhn, and pushed it south. Instead of it being some weird town-sim, there is a real purpose for Mithras to expand and maintain his town here. It is at the crossroads between 3 major areas: the bugherder region of the west, the eastern coastal Telvanni, and the harsh Dust Adept ashlands. Master Mithras has been trying to get a foothold in this tri-region-area, and push his area of influence for political gain. The questline can be refitted for this location and have a real purpose. This is also the conventional route into the ashlands, and so here is where you are warned that you shouldn’t venture up there, being hinted that the Dust Adepts will be hostile from the outset.
    • Tel Aranyon - Master Mithras’ tower.
  • Tel Mothrivra - In the Dagon Urul region. Mistress Rethara lives here. She is a master at destruction magic, and if you talk to locals you will hear stories of “accidents” that have happened periodically in the vicinity. (Misc. Questline Idea: servants have gone missing recently, and Rethara sends you around to investigate. First to Firewatch, then some other places. Eventually, you find out about a Lich living in a Tel in the Boethiah’s Spine or Dagon Urul region, and embark on a quest to find and destroy his phylactery.)
  • Tel Savel - In the north of the Enchanter’s Coast region, home to Master Meren. He studies the ancient magicks of the Enchanter’s Coast region, seeking to learn by which powers they were created. Is it just the presence of wizards for so many years, or is it something more? His laboratories are filled with ingredients, flora and fauna from the region.

 

The Port Telvannis Council

This council encompasses the densely-packed Telvanni Isles, with many upstart mages and Machiavellian political characters for the Masters. Their Mouths convene in a lower chamber in the same complex as the Parliament of Bugs. The region is covered with twisted sadrith monstrosities and alien flora and fauna. Outside Port Telvannis, a dangerous city in its own right, the region is absolutely treacherous and very high level. Most, if not all, fauna are powerful and aggressive, magical traps are everywhere, and daedra roam. 

The characterization of this council is cutthroat politics and “might makes right”. Quests in this region focus on the upstarts and the internal politics of the Telvanni. There is also an emphasis on the age and history of the city, with towers built on older, abandoned towers with magical secrets within.

Port Telvannis, the “City of Towers”, is the quintessential city of the Telvanni. On the water is its sprawling port, with lighthouses dotting the coastline, docking areas for countless ships coming anywhere from the Mainland to Pyandonea, and various Padomaic monsters (such as Giant Cephalopods) as the go-to method of local transportation.

The city itself starts with the dock district, most of the ground level of Port Telvannis, specifically around the area of Gah Sadrith (which would be absorbed into the larger Port Telvannis rather than be a separate city). There are root walkways that connect the two islands. On the main island lie the giant roots of the massive Tel Thenim, looming above. These roots are all connected and act as a way to navigate the bottom layer of the city. They connect to underground lairs, secret passages, smaller rooms, and lead to heavily-guarded ground-level access points to some of the large Tels of the city. Around these roots are colorful coral and seashell formations, interspersed with shops and homes for the common Velothi of Port Telvannis. Colorful lights and strange Telvanni formations cover the housepods on the ground-level. The Enchanters’ Tong and other Telvanni flavor guilds are here as well. The dominant feature of the undercity is the Temple, dedicated to the esoteric teachings of Sotha Sil. The Telvanni lords share no great love for the Temple, but its existence in their city is necessary to satisfy the masses, and also gives the Telvanni the opportunity to explore the ideas of the Father of Mystery himself.

(The Port Telvannis Skyline – art by Feivelyn)

(The Port Telvannis Undercity – art by Feivelyn)

Above the ground-level docks district is a walkway that circles the city, connecting the Parliament of Bugs with the merchant Tels and Tel Thenim. This is the wizard’s district, where the famed magical merchants of Port Telvannis reside to sell their rare and mystical goods and services, and nobles reside in their manors. Also located on this level is one of the largest slave markets in Morrowind, barring Tear. Here are some services provided by the most well-known merchants (who operate out of their own, smaller, Tels within the city:

  • Gavos Belaal - A Dunmer merchant who sells Daedra neonymics (the true names of Daedric spirits). He specializes in hunting down these neonymics through research of his own (he is an accomplished mage himself) or by collecting it from other wizards. He writes these neonymics down on special scrolls and sells them at high prices, mostly to young wizards who are unable to permanently bind Daedra for themselves. A minimum cost for one of these scrolls might be 10,000 gold, and the more powerful ones might even encourage (or require) bartering Daedric gear as high-value payments (such as a Daedric club for a nasty Ogrim). These scrolls would summon high-level permanent Daedra, with unique IDs and dialogue. They can be followers, or told to guard your stronghold. He has a unique relationship with Maven and Fatisa Romari, as described below.

(A colorful merchant-wizard's robe - Art by Feivelyn)

  • K’venska - A Sload merchant who sells rare magical items and ingredients from Thras. She makes a lot of money on these items, and even the highest Telvanni lords buy from her due to the rarity of the items. In a back room is a selection of corpses and other necromantic goods available for high prices.

(K’venska the Sload merchant -- art by MK)

  • Maven Romari (and sister Fatisa Romari) - Port Telvannis’ finest alchemist for nearly two centuries, Romari is one of the most recognizable names in the city. Maven is slightly mad, but offers a wide selection of exotic ingredients and high-end potions. Fatisa is a fortune teller, but operates in Maven’s shop.
    • Idea: A fact that is hidden from the public is that the shopkeeper’s sister, Fatisa, is actually a Daedric doppelgänger (who went rogue after Tharn’s death), posing as the fortune-teller, who was actually killed by her crazy sister. Gavos Belaal has long suspected that his fellow merchant is a doppelgänger, and desires above all else to find its neonymic. Romaril knows that something as useful to high Telvanni lords as a bound doppelgänger would sell for a ludicrously high price, boosting his wealth and status tenfold. In turn, Maven and the doppelgänger wage silent war against Belaal, sending assassins and curses and other obstacles his way in order to silence him.

Looking up from the wizard’s district, you can see the towers of famous wizard-merchants and, on the outskirts of the city, the towers of the Port Telvannis Masters. These Tels rise high into the sky, each one of them dominating the city below. But there is one Tel that dominates the others, one that commands the obedience of the city and the entire Telvannis region -- Tel Thenim.

This is the Telvanni city--massive, filled with heretics and wizards from across Tamriel. The common Velothi here are all but desensitized to its heresy; as long as they are sufficiently protected by their mage-lords above, they are able to tolerate much more than their mainland cousins. Powerful Altmer mages, exiled from the Summerset Isles for their profane areas of study, reside in the City of Towers, along with Maormeri searching for magical artifacts long lost. Sload necromancers reside in the tunnels and lairs beneath the city, as well as vampires (of which there is a clan headquarters elsewhere on Vahn, a magic-focused Dunmer clan) and others of a less-than-savory nature. It is even said that reclusive Numidinists such as “Xal, a Human Maruhkati” dwell in Port Telvannis (from the Skeleton Man Interview). Outlaw cults are scattered throughout the city, from the massive Tels to the Velothi back-alleys to the underground lairs. Bound Daedra roam, such as flame atronachs who light the lanterns of the city and the various Daedric servants of the city’s wizards.

The Parliament of Bugs meets in a large, bulbous chamber near the center of the city, which connects the ground level to the wizard’s district. The Magisters send permanent Mouths here (as well as their respective council hall). Although the Magisters preside over their own councils, every Master of House Telvanni is a member of the Parliament of Bugs, and can send mouths or even come there themselves if they wish, although it is a rare event that the Masters convene themselves. There are even ash-pits inside for the Dust-Masters to appear in every once in a while, to curse and rant, sometimes spitting out useful bits of prophecy.

  • Tel Thenim - The gigantic tower of Archmagister Dral that dominates the city, rising above all other Tels. It rises right from the center of the city, supporting the platforms of the merchant’s district. It is the largest Telvanni tower in existence. 
  • Tel Parran - Former home of the most recent Archmagister before Dral, Eranil Parran. Though she died long ago, the current lord, Master Ulvor Parran, still believes he is owed a seat on the council on account of his mother's former status. Ulvor, however, is a bit of an idiot, and has been a convenient stooge for Dral until Dral's recent disappearance. Tel Parran sits half-suspended above the sea, both for protection from the other towers and for dramatic effect.
  • Tel Ranol - Seat of Master Theldis, a jealous, vicious old mage who was rewarded for his strong support of a now-dead Dral rival with demotion from the Council. Since Dral’s disappearance, he has resumed his old position. Tel Ranol is built into the side of the hills that bisect Vahn, and much of the tower is underground.

(Master Theldis in his opulent, colorful robes -- Art by Feivelyn)

  • Tel Vinra - Home of Mistress Elmavera, a scared young wizard who abruptly seized the ancient tower when her predecessor was murdered. While she did not in fact kill Tel Vinra's former master, the idea that she did lends Elmavera a reputation that's currently concealing Tel Vinra's weaknesses. Tel Vinra itself is a spiraling tower of thinner-than-typical sadrith that's actually taller than Tel Thenim (something its residents are quite proud of).
  • Tel Sathas - Expanded Sathas Plantation, and now a true tower. Master Angon is a loyal and old ally of Archmagister Dral.
  • Tel Drevis - The tower of Mistress Revisa, a hermit who lives underwater in a Tel grown into an ancient Dreugh citadel. She studies the ancient magical life of the sea.
  • Tel Natu - The tower of a vampire ancient whose tower serves as the base of a Dunmer vampire clan.

 

The Dust Adepts

Here’s my proposal for the Dust Adepts: they are not one cult in one dungeon, nor are they merely bandits or some other unrelated flavor faction; they are a group of Telvanni who have a distinct culture. In vanilla, their helmet is a generic enchanted item, which suggests this culture is more than one small cult. In the concept art, they are called “Telvanni Dust Adepts”, not just “Dust Adepts”, and are shown next to a powerful Telvanni wizard with a cephalopod helm, implying that these aren’t just dunmer ashlanders of sorts, but they are part of House Telvanni proper. In my proposal there are Dust Masters and Dust Adepts. Dust Masters are powerful ash-mad wizards who inhale the volcanic fumes or do something equally ash-related that feeds them extraordinary powers, both practical and prophetic. They’re not omnipotent, but they are a force to be reckoned with. The Dust Adepts are the apprentices and retainers of these Masters. They embody the more survivalist interpretation, and they wear gear that protects them from the harsh conditions and fumes (which the Masters don’t need since they are so powerful). The Adepts practice magic just the same, however, since they are depicted with spell and staff in the concept art. They roam the ash-wastes and are hostile to any who approach. The Masters occasionally appear in ash pits in Parliament. The Dust Masters inhabit ash-stricken Tels on the highest peaks of the volcanic mountains.

(Dust Adept to the left and Dust Master to the right - art by MK)

They are a full council with several Masters. Their Magister sends no mouth to Port Telvannis. If there is ever any need for the Magister’s appearance, he appears in an ash-pit in the Parliament of Bugs, fueled by powerful magic. General rumors and dialogue everywhere around Telvannis will warn you about their hostility and the dire consequences murdering them would have on the Telvanni questline.

  • The Hive - The Hive, from the Morrowind concept art, is the council hall of the Dust Adepts. It’s where the Dust Masters’ mouths convene to talk about magic and threats to the Dust Adepts’ borders. Everyone here is hostile until the proper point in the questline. There is a large chamber in here which spawns smaller bat-winged cliff racers that plague the region, serving as a literal and figurative hive.

(The Hive, based on TES3 Concept Art -- Art by Feivelyn)

Tel Haresi - The Dust Magister, Magister Rasith, resides here. It is the highest peak in Telvannis, and fuels most of the ash that settles in the Dagon Urul region.
Tel Falvon - The westernmost Dust Master’s Tel is the home of Master Dothan, who is under the influence of the Sixth House. He was formerly a Dagoth who cleverly defected to House Telvanni to avoid the destruction of his house, so he can hear the whispers despite the distance.
Tel Sharan - The home of Master Leven, a vampire who sequesters himself particularly deep in the volcanic chasms beneath his Tel rather than inhale the fumes from the surface like most Dust Masters do.
Tel Udra - The home of Mistress Nirmannu, an ancient mabrigash who was cast out of the Telvannis ashlander tribes for her particular interest in bad daedra and dark magic, as well as her murderous tendencies.
Tel Arad - Home of the most lucid of the Dust Masters, Mistress Tirrava. She is the player’s patron/main questgiver on this particular council.

 

The Parliament of Bugs

Each council I have proposed is made up of about 5 Masters, one of those Masters being a Magister, the one who presides over the council. They are set up like vanilla’s council. These Magisters then send representatives to the Parliament of Bugs, which is an overarching organization that means next to nothing to the iconoclastic Telvanni. It exists as a formality, and as something for the Telvanni to theoretically unite behind when facing a common enemy. Some policy decisions are decided here, and there are some rituals and meetings, but it barely affects the day-to-day lives of the Telvanni, not nearly as much as the local councils might. This decentralized approach works much better for the Telvanni than having a lack of councils.

Archmagister Dral presides over the Parliament of Bugs, though he has been absent for a while now.

Ranks [Name (where mouths are sent) - Tower]

Archmagister:

  • Dral (Port Telvannis Council, Parliament of Bugs) - Tel Thenim (absent)

Magister:

  • Gothren (Sadrith Mora Council, Parliament of Bugs) - Tel Aruhn
  • Sathisi (Tel Muthada Council, Parliament of Bugs) - Tel Darys
  • Vaerin (Llothanis Council, Parliament of Bugs) - Tel Vysera
  • Rasith (The Hive Council, Parliament of Bugs) - Tel Haresi

Master:

  • Neloth (Sadrith Mora Council) - Tel Naga
  • Therana (Sadrith Mora Council) - Tel Branora
  • Dratha (Sadrith Mora Council) - Tel Mora
  • Aryon (Sadrith Mora Council) - Tel Vos
  • Baladas Demnevanni (Sadrith Mora Council) - Arvs-Drelen
  • Rilmas Athyrion (Tel Muthada Council) - Tel Onoria
  • Nisa (Tel Muthada Council) - Tel Gilan
  • Falen (Tel Muthada Council) - Tel Niril
  • Navari (Tel Muthada Council) - Tel Tarulin
  • Andrano Llervu (Llothanis Council) - Tel Llervu
  • Arvasa (Llothanis Council) - Tel Bosara
  • Mithras (Llothanis Council) - Tel Aranyon
  • Rethara (Llothanis Council) - Tel Mothrivra
  • Meren (Llothanis Council) - Tel Savel
  • Elmavera (Port Telvannis Council) - Tel Vinra
  • Theldis (Port Telvannis Council) - Tel Ranol
  • Ulvor Parran (Port Telvannis Council) - Tel Parran
  • Angon (Port Telvannis Council) - Tel Sathas
  • Revisa (Port Telvannis Council) - Tel Drevis
  • Dothan (The Hive Council) - Tel Falvon
  • Leven (The Hive Council) - Tel Sharan
  • Nirmannu (The Hive Council) - Tel Udra
  • Tirrava (The Hive Council) - Tel Arad

Region Proposals

Proposed Region Map - By Taniquetil

Proposed Basemap - By Taniquetil

 

Molag Ruhn

This is a region of rocky hills, dotted with parasols and trees made of corkbulb and hackle-lo. This region is ideal for bugherding, and is the place that the PGE1 characterizes as Telvannis. The local Velothi, in service to their Telvanni mage-lords, tend the beetles and other insects that are herded, but the Masters still often take an active role in their herds, as the herding is what maintains their political and economic relevance.

 

Scath Anud

Scath Anud is a rocky yet forested region of eastern Telvannis, with picturesque waterfalls and rivers. It borders the Indoril to the South and the more dangerous Telvanni areas to the North.

 

Sunad Mora

The Sunad Mora is a large, unholy forest full of dark undergrowth and twisted sadrith formations. This cursed and dangerous region is home to many isolated, mad wizards who have profaned the land over many generations. It is full of Tels, dungeons, enemies, and history.

 

Dagon Urul

The Dagon Urul is a hostile, dry and dusty region that surrounds Firewatch and hosts the Dust Adepts. It gets its dust from the ashy volcanoes of Boethiah’s Spine. Ashlanders live here as well, as the region is not nearly as populated or hospitable as surrounding regions.

 

Boethiah's Spine

The primary region of the Dust Adepts, Boethiah’s Spine is the main ashlands of the East. It is the most dangerous in all of Telvannis (save for maybe parts of the Telvanni Isles).

 

Telvanni Isles

The Telvanni Isles is essentially the Telvanni fanservice region. It is the idealized version of Azura’s coast, with sadrith galore and sea life and coral, with magical dangers throughout the wilderness and plenty of towers sprinkled all around. It hosts the capital city of Port Telvannis.

Why is this important?


This rethinking of the Telvanni keeps them in character by introducing the idea of regional centers of power and distinct cultural ideas in a way that is much more player-and-gameplay-friendly. Removing the idea that Gothren split off and claimed the title of Archmagister removes the haphazard tacked-on council in Sadrith Mora, and plays out the Telvanni in a much more satisfying way. One Master from each of the five councils could work closely with the player, much like Aryon did. This way, the player is better situated to jump into the hunt for Dral, and gives them a bigger insight into each of the distinct regions and cultures of Telvannis. It’s more “normal” in the sense that it plays more naturally, but has room for a lot of contrasting Telvanni themes and weirdness.
 

Credits

A huge thank you to all these people for helping me!

  • Vern - made significant contributions to the main ideas.
  • Cicero - helped by sanity checking the whole proposal, and his “Locations on the Mainland” post was taken into account in the Map redo to ensure that concept locations are used as much as possible. Also, a few of his ideas on the Brainstorming Thread were incorporated into my proposal. (https://www.tamriel-rebuilt.org/forum/locations-mainland
  • Taniquetil - her Imperial Telvannis Overhaul and her proposal for Vahn’s towers were incorporated into my proposal, refitted wherever necessary. She also created the gridmap mockups and many placenames. (https://www.tamriel-rebuilt.org/comment/15920#comment-15920
  • Feivelyn - created most of the artwork without which I wouldn't have been motivated enough to finish this proposal.
  • Chef - he promised to claim Port Telvannis for the redo if I gave him a spot in the credits.
     
Taniquetil's picture
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Just posting the full-resolution maps here for reference.

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I omega endores multiple counsels + fat telvannis

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It's really good! I was looking forward to this proposal, well I am not disappointed.

If I understand correctly, the player will have to follow the quest line of a single council? So either Sadrith Mora, or Llothanis, or Tel Muthada, or Hive, or Port Telvannis? That will be a lot of quest lines to create, so that few quests will be achievable in the end. But it gives even more possibilities to the factions of the game, if I understand correctly.

I really like the distribution of the regions. Each region seems to have its own identity, as much visual as scenic. I still think that Boethiah's Spine is an ideal area to separate two types of region (arid type/fertile type), but it still fits very well on your map. Even if I don't understand why the ash/dust only goes to Dagon Urul (nice name!), but well, we'll say that in the basic game this question can also be asked!

The only thing I don't like is the shape of the map. It was much more beautiful before. But I guess to place the redo regions, it is mandatory to give it a different shape. The rivers and lakes of the actual map gave it a very cool look! The territory seemed "fractured", like the telvanni house is.

I'm sure the Telvani regions as well as the house quests will be amazing! I love your work.

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This proposal is amazing. It deals with the problem of the Sadrith Mora Council in such an elegant and interesting way. I hope it, or something very like it, comes to pass. 

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This has been a very interesting and inspiring read. Looking forward to hopefully seeing these concepts come to life eventually.

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Just a thought I had and didn't know where best to post it. Even if the Telvani family itself has fallen from any authority in Great House Telvanni (see people like Tonas Telvani), would it not make sense that they have a well appointed and protected by magic ancestral tomb on the Isles or Peninsula? 

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The Telvani family (single N) is not a prominent or formerly prominent family within the house, their like the Narusa's they take their name from the city (port Telvannis) and unlike the Narusas they are squarely lower class. Their tomb may or may not be on the island.

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Wow. Just when I think TR can't possibly make the Telvanni much cooler than they already have. I really like the cultural decentralisation aspect of your proposal. When I saw how atomised they're planning on making House Dres, I remember thinking it would fit for the Telvanni just as well, and here we are. Sidenote - I'll be severely disappointed in the TR community if this happens and they don't ultimately take to nicknaming the Tel Muthada Telvanni 'The Wongs'. They basically sound like Leo and Inez from Futurama, but with magic and sadrith towers instead of casinos and giant minigolf courses lol.

I also like how, even from the short descriptions you've given them, it's clear to see how the new masters could be fleshed out into very interesting characters. Nirmannu and Leven sound like they'd be worth having a chat with even if they weren't questgivers. Certainly, it'd be interesting to hear how a mabrigash and a vampire ended up involved in Great House politics.

Question: are Rethara and Elmavera more or less just Rathra and Eldale rebranded? Does Rethara still have most of Rathra's existing characteristics, since you don't really get a sense for her character or the political role she'd play in her local council from being a destruction specialist alone?

I hope Elmavera is a rebranded Eldale (although tbh I prefer her existing name). I enjoy Eldale's riddles, and I always liked the idea that even in spite of the Telvannis' legendary xenophobia, they'd still end up with a few non-Dunmer in leadership positions simply because of the whole might-makes-right aspect of their culture. And it does make sense that if there'd be non-Dunmer Telvanni masters, they'd most likely be Altmer, what with their naturally long lives, magical proficiency and all. Particularly sitting on the Port Telvannis council where, as you say, there's already a community of exiled Summerset mages to draw from.

Ooooh, now you've got me thinking about how Eldale/Elmavera might be leaning on her fellow Altmer in the exile community for support/protection in the wake of her predecessor's murder, how they might wield influence through her on the Port Telvannis council, and how their interests might diverge from the native Telvanni. All the better for Port Telvannis' whole convoluted and hyper-divided Telvanni intrigue and politicking angle.

If I understand correctly, the player will have to follow the quest line of a single council? So either Sadrith Mora, or Llothanis, or Tel Muthada, or Hive, or Port Telvannis? That will be a lot of quest lines to create, so that few quests will be achievable in the end. But it gives even more possibilities to the factions of the game, if I understand correctly.

Nah, judging by the linked questline structure proposal, the limitations are far more specific than that. You can complete quests for any council. It's just that Aryon is still the only one who can promote you to Mouth or from Mouth to Master (none of the other masters need new mouths) , and you can only rise to the leadership of either the Sadrith Mora or Port Telvannis Council; the other councils' questlines just focus on things other than ultimately taking control of that council for yourself. The Tel Muthada council questline ultimately will become about helping your ally on that council, Master Falen, to stop Magister Sathisi sabotaging his bugherds, helping Falen assert his status and prestige as one of the leading bugherd/mage lords of the region, and to procure a coveted set of beetle armor for himself. If anybody's replacing Sathisi as Tel Muthada magister, it's Falen (although OP isn't clear on whether it would necessarily escalate that far).

Basically, either kill Gothren for Aryon and become Sadrith Mora Magister, or just become Master in Sadrith Mora and get all the Magisters' support to petition to the Parliament of Bugs steward to make you Magister of Port Telvannis council in the Archmagister's absence. Whichever you choose, you can then become Archmagister of the entire House by completing a higher questline solving the mystery of where Dral went and why, like OP says in the other post he links.

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Rethara's name is linked to Rathra, but they're not the same character. Rethara is more of a volatile destruction master trope.

Elmavera was also conceived as a completely different character than Eldale. While I can see the attraction of having an Altmer Telvanni master, they are the most racist house behind the Dres. "Might makes right" only among Telvanni lords. If an outlander were to disrupt this social order, they'd not let it slide. The player retains the special privilege of being the outlander to disrupt this order, as in vanilla.

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Fair enough, I hope at least she stays around as a lower ranking Telvanni with her own tower somewhere, maybe still in Gah-Sadrith since there don't seem to be any others there?

Also I just had an additional idea to maybe flesh out Mistress Arvasa a bit more - she relies on spriggans to deter hunters, lumberjacks etc. from areas of interest that she wishes to keep untouched, so she can focus on her studies in her tower. While it may seem more expedient to use atronachs or other daedra for this task, Arvasa's tried that in the past, but found that both locals and the local wildlife are much less alarmed by spriggans than daedra.

At the moment, she can only really attract them to specific areas (likely by planting herbs that spriggans have an affinity towards) and leave them to do the rest, but alongside her general environmental studies, a longstanding project of Arvasa's has been learning how to permanently bind spriggans like daedra, so she can directly command them as a sort-of eco-police force. This is partly because there are too many areas Arvasa feels need protection from incursions of man and mer, but whose local ecosystem would also be intolerably impacted by the introduction of the herb she uses to attract spriggans.

One quest for Arvasa might involve gathering samples of rare spriggan heartwood for her to study, which might give her the insight she needs to figure out how to control them. Of course it'll take time to realise her dreams of an organised force of spriggan eco-warriors (and besides, like much of everything else going on in Morrowind in the late Third Era, the Red Year will most likely ruin it all anyway), but for the timespan of the game at least, on future visits to Tel Bosara you'll find she's been able to tame a spriggan earth mother or two into her personal bodyguard(s) as a sort of proof of concept. She could also possibly mention to the player that the materials they've gathered have also given her fascinating insights into how the spriggans came to exist in the first place and what drives them.

And of course, Arvasa's reliance on spriggans as a deterent against the destruction of nature would likely pose problems to the ordinary citizens and faction chapters in Alt Bosara and nearby settlements. No doubt you could have a misc quest or two in the area where you need to either save a missing person from one of those spriggans or find them dead with spriggans standing over them.

Another misc quest idea for the Alt Bosara area might revolve around the unintended consequences of Arvasa not telling whatever yokel she paid to plant the herbs to attract the spriggans, why she was paying him to plant those specific herbs in those specific places. The guy decides the stuff smells or looks nice or both and decides to plant a bunch more of it around town, only to accidentally attract spriggans and cause mayhem which the player has to step in to resolve.