2/24/2011: First trailer is up, and it looks pretty. Have fun.
1/6/2011: First off, happy new year! Second, here's some screens on the new Gameinformer, expected to hit shelves January 14th, and shipped to subscribers earlier. It is not legal to post any screens, so the most I can do will be to scour the internet in hopes of someone else doing so and linking to that. Gameinformer say they will also post screens o their website, so stay tuned for that.
12/11/2010-12/12/2010: So to my surprise and many others surprise, Todd Howard had some strange entrance during the Video Game Awards yesterday, where a bunch of men dressed up as Monks entered a foggy stage with the background screens depicting epic mountains. Behind the monks appears Todd Howard, who built up the anticipation to what the next game would be. I remember shaking my leg and hoping it would be the Elder Scrolls. My silent prayers were heard and my week was made.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim will take place in...Skyrim, the land of the Nords. Already there has been much speculation going around, but there are already a few things that have been confirmed about the game:
-Screenshots are forthcoming soon. I will post them as Bethesda posts them.
-Gameinformer will be covering the Elder Scrolls in their new cover issue. I can't post screens to my knowledge, but hopefully they will be released online elsewhere.
-IMPORTANT: Bethesda has created a new engine for this game. Yup. No more Gamebryo.
Skyrim is a rugged, ravaged place, the site of many past battles. The Nords believe that they were created here, on the mountain known as High Hrothgar. Settlers from Atmora made landfall here many times before claiming the region as their own. These spaced-out migrations often resulted in clashes with the Aldmer. "Out of this time also rose one of the most legendary of all Tamrielic figures, Ysgramor, from whom all Nordic kings are descended."  His clan expanded their territory, and it continued to expand and contract by winning and losing territories in Morrowind and High Rock. After quarrels from the rivalries of the Ysgramor clan however, Skyrim weakened and separated into multiple states during the War of Succession. Thenceforth it would only be united for brief periods. Skyrim engaged in multiple clashes with High Rock over its western Reach, a civil war involving The Wolf Queen of Solitude, an invasion of Cuhlecain's Cyrodiil, and wars with Hammerfell and High Rock during the Imperial Simulacrum.
Skyrim's architecture is reflected in Bruma, situated in northern Cyrodiil. The buildings in Bruma are built partly underground to conserve heat, and are made with stones, with wood used only for support, and roofs of straw above the wood. These houses are essential to keep in heat in the freezing climate.
Redguards and Bretons are still giving resistance today, as The War of the Bend'r-mahk expanded Skyrim far into Hammerfell and High Rock. Resistance is mostly encountered in the cities of Jehenna and Elinhir, and of course, along the border to those provinces.
Skyrim is a powerful province, and thus has some wealthy areas. For example, "Solitude, always one of the richest and most influential counties in Skyrim, has grown ever more powerful, controlling much of the northern coastline following King Thian's alliance by marriage with Macalla, the Queen of Dawnstar. It has sought to expand its influence further by annexing several former Imperial fiefs, such as the island of Roscrea, ruled directly by the Emperor since Uriel V conquered it in the 271st year." There are also influences from Morrowind, such as in the city of Winterhold, Solitude's rival, since refugees from Morrowind escape there, bringing new ideas, cultures, and stimulating the economy. However, Hrothgar and Whiterun, once places with powerful economies, have been crippled by floods, droughts, and fires, along with attacks from frost trolls and bandits. The area is now under the control of Jsashe, the leader of the local witches coven, and a self-proclaimed priestess of Lorkhan, although the area is still struggling.
A city in the north of Skyrim.
A city in Southern Skyrim.
The famed mountain known as Snow-Throat, where the Greybeards live and Shor created man.
A city in Western Skyrim.
A city in Southeastern Skyrim.
One of the most influential and wealthy counties in Skyrim, rival of Winterhold. It is located in Northwestern Skyrim.
A city in Eastern Skyrim.
A city in Northeastern Skyrim.
A wealthy and influential county in Skyrim. It is heavily affected by Dunmer ways and ideas, being close to the border. It contains the Ysmir Collective, and the well known College of Winterhold. It is located in Northeastern Skyrim.
Check out the Elder Scrolls wiki as well.
Scene 1: a carved stone wall. In the bottom center, a mage/priest figure with a long beard is holding his arms up, in his right is some sort of scepter, in his left palm appears to be some sort of eye. To his left is a warrior/mage in heavy armor, with a polearm in his right hand and his right held forward, casting a spell. He also appears to be doing Thu'um. On the right is another warrior with what appears to be long hair, or perhaps magic. The background has many other figures, though the 3 take central importance. Most of the wall is taken up by a colossal, coiled dragon.
VO, black ground: "You should have acted."
Scene 2: close up of the left section of sn1, including what was previously off-camera. Shows several dragons spewing fire onto the cliffs while tiny people run away. Cliffs appear to have buildings carved into them, and a large rectangular structure with 4 half-arches (temple?) is also featured. Zoom into this structure.
Scene 3: close up of two dragons from previous scene, panning towards top-right. Cliff-buildings clearly visible.
VO: "They're already here. The Elder Scrolls told of their return."
Scene 4: close up of secondary figures on wall - people running, cowering, looking upwards. Some are on horses. Panning right.
Scene 5: Close up of 3 primary figures, panning out an up.
VO: "Their defeat was merely a delay."
Scene 6: Another wall detail - Akulakhan on the left, stylized Oblivion gate on the right, topped with what appears to be a Sigil tower. Slow zoom towards the gate.
VO: "Their defeat was merely delay. Til the time after Oblivion opened. "
Scene 7: close up of right side of stella. Armored men fighting. The people on the right wear pretty solid armor, slit skirt things, and horned helmets. Those on the left have shorted, full skirts with slits and segmented armor, appearing more Imperial. Area below is segmented (some sort of platform?) and littered with what appear to be bodies. Slashing swords heard in background.
VO: "When the sons of Skyrim would spill their own blood. But no-one wanted to believe."
Scene 8: Same stone as the stella, but more relief. Slow pan down, revealing claw, wing, and eventually face of dragon, coming alive from within the stone. Dragon opens eye dramatically.
VO: "Believe they even existed.And when the truth finally dawns: It dawns in fire."
Scene 9: Dragon comes alive, fully 3D, out of a cliff. Apparently not part of the stella. It stretches and breathes stylized stone 'fire' onto the stella. Little skeletal men are seen burning (think medieval manuscript illustrations of hell). Slow pan to an armored hand.
Scene 10: Armored leg, pan up.
VO: "There's one they fear."
Scene 11: Torso of an armored figure, standing in profile, a sword in his right hand and his left held in a fist in front of his head. He appears to have a mustache, and appears to be breathing fire (or perhaps performing Thu'um). His armor looks to be Lorical Segmentata, suggesting Imperial origin. It is very similar to the Oblivion Blades armor. The fire wavers in front of him, not touching his person.
VO: "In their tongue, he's Dovahkiin"
Scene 12: Zoom in on guy's face.
VO: "Dragon Born!"
Scene 13: Skyrim logo, on black. The traditional TES theme (head in both MW and OB) plays in the background, this time with a male chanting choir.
Who are "they?"
Most obviously, dragons. However, this is not exactly a satisfactory explanation. The Tamrielic dragons, like Nafalilaargus in Redguard, were not defeated and nothing in lore suggests that they would be coming back in a dramatic, dangerous fashion. We also have no historical record of them ever terrorizing Tamriel. If they really are just strait up dragons, it could be a retcon or a gap in our lore knowledge. Other possibilities include the more metaphorical:
Tsaesci/Akaviri - they have been defeated in the past, and their coming back would be dangerous and dramatic. Dragons are also said to originate from Akavir. However, Akavir is not exactly near Skyrim. I am also unsure as to why the Akaviri (well acquainted with Dragons, Immortal Vampire Snakemen, and God-Tiger-Dragons) would be afraid of the Dragonborn. Their existence is not exactly disputed, either.
Akatosh - the Dragon Lord of Time, and Nordic Alduin, that is "World Eater." He is the destroyer of worlds, and perhaps the Nord's biggest 'enemy' (as much as a Shiva-like god can be an enemy). "They" being multiple makes this less plausible, though it could refer to his multitude of underlings (including the Jills, or time-mending lady dragons). I doubt that the Nords don't believe he existed.
The Empire - dragons are their symbol, and they were defeated, and are set to come back. The sheer amount of gravitas granted to this event makes this an unlikely explanation. Again, their existence is not disputed. However, the nature of their divine right to rule (their dragon status) probably is.
It could of course be some sort of combination of these, like an Akaviri Emperor who is mantling Talos. Or It could be someone we've never heard of before.
Who is the Dragonborn?
"Dragon Born" is used to refer to the Cyrodil Emperors, due to their being 'born' from the Alessian covenant with Akatosh. While the Septim empire has fallen, we know that at least one (that of Titus Mede) has taken its place since. The Imperial armor on the man makes Imperial origin almost certain. Dragons are also associated with Akavir and with time, so "Dragon Born" could could be Akaviri or an avatar/embodiment/child of Akatosh (like a Shezarine, but with Akatosh).
Tiber Septim (anon Talos, anon Ysmir) is the emperor most often associated with the dragon sigil. He is also the patron of empire and conquest.
His being shown strongly suggests that the player will once again take a supporting role in TESV, since the hero (the Dragon Born) is established as male and mustachio'd. It is also possible that the Dragonborn will be reincarnated in/ mantled by the player.
The latest lore on Skyrim can be found in the Aldudagga, by Michael Kirkbride.
The teaser site gives us further details on the stella. Here are my additional thoughts:
There are three people, two male and one female, line up to the left of the Dragonborn, dressed in the same armor as he.
Above the Dragonborn's helm is a strange symbol. Flat at the bottom, with two curved hands coming out and a three-pronged shape in between.
So forthcoming: the released screens and engine info.
Hey, Sephiroth, TL;DR nub! Fine. At least read this:
So Lets discuss anything about Skyrim. I think a good hot topic will be about the New Engine, as this is the first departure from the Gamebryo engine in
Alrighty. Have fun guys and gals.