Forums » Elder Scrolls

TES VI: Factions

    • 8 posts
    March 6, 2016 9:18 AM EST

    So, it's me again. Me with my unsolicited opinions about things that really don't matter. Seriously, why do I keep doing this?

    Anyway, we're talking about factions in the next Elder Scrolls game. So far I spoke about magic and the setting.

    Factions are an important part of every Elder Scrolls game that can shape your character's opinions and play styles. The factions in the modern games (which we're using as examples once again) were at their best in morrowind, I think. Don't take that as me saying they were perfect though, they were still deeply flawed. In Morrowind, there was a lot of factions able to be joined, from the Morag Tong to the great houses to the Imperial Cult. And these factions have clashing ideologies like the Temple of the Tribunal and the Imperial Cult being at odds with one another, and depending on what your character was like you could only join one of these factions. The same way you could only join one Great House. Put Morrowind's guilds into comparison with Skyrim's. Skyrim has 7 guilds in total, after DLC. 7. Morrowind had 22(if I remember correctly). ON top of that, the only factions restricted by your actions were the factions you couldn't join because the faction you were in is at flatĀ out war with another. Oblivion's factions weren't much better than Skyrim's.

    Skyrim's factions were a guild for each star sign/liner class with a warrior going to the companions and a mage going to the collage and a thief/assassin would go to the dark brother hood and thieve's guild. Not complex. Now think about Morrowind. We'll use magic users as an example here. One guild who favoured magic was the Telvanii, another was the mages guild. So you stumble across the mag'es guild in Balmora when you are told to go level up at the start of the main quest. You join the mages guild and start working through their quests. Later you meet house Telvanii and you rapidly discover you're hated by everyone in the house because of your affiliation with the Mage's guild.

    Now that I'm done spewing about how great an RPG Morrowind is and how I have my Rose tinted Nostalgia Goggles firmly on, what do I want from factions in TES 6? I want choice. Choice is going to be a running theme throughout my discussions. There should be multiple factions for each class like there was in Morrowind and they should have clashing ideologies forcing you to make a choice between say the Necromancer guild and the Mage's Guild because the mages have a serious disdain for necromancy or because it's outlawed in the Empire (depending on the setting). Or maybe there are multiple fighting factions, there is the fighter's guild who fight for money and money alone who are in a feud with the guild who fight for the glory of battle who in turn are against a splinter faction who left the mercenary faction to join the glory faction but weren't happy with the standards of equipment their because they refused to take money for the battles they fight in and if you choose to join them you must decide whether you make them into a great rival to the Fighter's Guild or rejoin them or even go back to the glory faction and convince them to take some money for doing jobs for people to pay for the costs of the guild. I think you get my point.

    Vampirism is a topic I'm saving for a later date so I'll keep it brief, there should be multiple vampire clans that have complex relationships, like one clan (A) hating clan B but liking clan C but clan C are on good terms with clan B and joining clans A.b or C and rising to the top you would need to try and either make peace with the clan you dislike or destroy them and ruin your relationship with the clan that liked you both. Man I confused myself there.

    In summary: Lots of guilds with complex relationships and different ideologies despite their focus both being on magic/fighting/what ever.

    I apologise if this was hard to read I don't think my writing was very good today.

    • 27 posts
    March 8, 2016 11:56 AM EST

    Actually, this isn't a bad topic as you do seem passionate about faction choices. I did find it odd that Skyrim only had a very limited choice in factions, but I guess it wasn't a designer priority. I think it's cool that as a thief, I can still be a Companion, though magic use isn't really something they look good to beat swords and boards right?

    I really think factions should go beyond your class story arc though. Factions should represent power bases that have little to do with class guilds. There are really only two class guilds that I can see as being really feasible and that is a Thief's Guild and a Mage's guild. Beyond that, specific instructors and mission givers for specific styles of play.

    All other factions/Guilds should be able to be joined by any given class, though may have some racial restrictions (sorry reality can dictate cultural disdain for specific races back and forth). These factions should be having their own power aims and underlying goals. Instead of an all encompassing Merchant's Guild why not several competing guilds that hire on adventurers for additional muscle . Players can work their way through quests to gain notoriety and maybe limited Leadership...though not complete power. That is just one example. Now the DG could possibly make a re appearance depending on where they decide the next installment goes. I just personally find it laughable to have a warriors guild...mercenaries will find work wherever there is conflict and they don't need a guild to do it. NOW, if there were say 2 or 3 different Mercenary Companies...that would be real interesting, especially if the Companies were in competition with one another, that would be cool. Loose faction with one, and members will attack you eheheheheh!

    Same for Thief Guilds...Maybe specific Cities each have their own...Maybe you can join rival gangs to take over turf and control a district...there would be a cool option.

    What I am surprised at is that there are no religious factions why aren't there factions for Talos or Dibella or any of the other gods to include the Daedra?

    Hmm...Maybe the Dark mother does need to stay in play for the Dark Brotherhood and then make the Nightingales a real faction, not just in name only.

    My thing is, while perhaps a small amount of factions can be class related, there needs to be more than that for motivation and purpose. Especially for players who enjoy a good story. So, don't limit the factions to class guilds...make them power bases that are consistently attempting to gain influence and there for rule behind the scenes in their little neck of the woods.