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The Elder Scrolls: 8 Things You Didn't Know About High Rock

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  • Posted on 01st Oct, 2022 08:25 AM
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The Elder Scrolls is filled with all types of locations and folklore. One of the more interesting places is High Rock.

p>Just like its inhabitants, the regions of Tamriel have their own stories to tell. One of the more interesting tales involves High Rock, the Breton homeland. Tucked away in the northwestern edge of the continent High Rock possesses one of Tamriel's most tumultuous histories.

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Players first got a taste of this land in The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall. More recently, The Elder Scrolls Online provided avenues for more in-depth exploration. Players are also able to glean much of High Rock's cultural and historical details from in-game lore. Sifting through all that information may take a while, so these are some of the more interesting tidbits regarding the land of the Bretons.

8/8 Originally Settled By The Aldmer

Like most regions of Tamriel, High Rock's original inhabitants were an ancient race of beings with which some players may not be familiar. The Aldmer, precursors to the High Elves, were the first to settle the land and developed a highly robust civilization far and above any other in existence at the time.

Eventually, ancient tribes of Men arrived in the region, known as the Nedes. Over the succeeding years, the two cultures slowly became one, giving rise to a new race: the Bretons. These people thus share an ancestry that consists of both Man and Mer.

7/8 Site Of The Adamantine Tower

High Rock holds a special distinction as being the site of Tamriel's oldest structure. The Adamantine Tower, also known as Direnni Tower, was already established by the time of the Aldmer's arrival. Many other structures subsequently built across Tamriel, such as the White-Gold Tower, take inspiration from it.

Local history purports the Adamantine Tower was constructed by the Aedra. Supposedly, they used the tower as a meeting place while discussing the creation of the world. The Heart of Lorkhan was also said to have been thrown from the Tower by the vengeful gods and into the mortal plane.

6/8 Consists Of Five Main Regions

High Rock lies to the northwest of the continent, bordering Hammerfell and Skyrim. The region itself can be broken into five main geographic areas. They include Glenumbra, Stormhaven, Rivenspire, northern Bangkorai, and Wrothgar. Two small islands, that of Balfiera and Betony, off the coast also belong to High Rock.

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Glenumbra lies to the west, where the cities of Daggerfall and Camlorn are located. The central area, Stormhaven, consists primarily of hills and woodlands. To the north, in Rivenspire, lay a series of rocky canyons and moors. Bangkorai is to the southeast and borders Hammerfell as well as Skyrim's Reach. Lastly, Wrothgar to the northeast contains the Orcish city of Orsinium.

5/8 Currently Houses Orsinium

The greatest Orcish city in Tamriel is unquestionably Orsinium. It's the closest thing to an Orc homeland that race has on the continent. The first incarnation of the city was built after the transformation of Trinimac and his followers into Orcs, with the former becoming the Daedric Prince, Malacath.

Throughout the succeeding eras, Orsinium would be sacked by invaders from neighboring provinces and rebuilt several times. Currently, Orsinium is situated between Skyrim and Hammerfell amidst the mountains of High Rock's Wrothgar region.

4/8 Disjointed Politics

Except for rare instances in its history, High Rock's government has always been rather decentralized. Much of the province's politics can be summed up as a collection of squabbling city-states and kingdoms. This hodgepodge of disjointed entities typically fought each other as much as they did foreign incursions.

Only during rare occasions were the Bretons of High Rock able to unite under one banner. The Greater Daggerfall Covenant, led by High King Emeric during the Alliance War, is one such example of fleeting Breton cooperation.

3/8 The Warp In The West

Absorption into Tiber Septim's Third Empire failed to stop the endless infighting in High Rock. Old rivalries and grudges between the petty kingdoms and city-states continued unabated. A catastrophic event, known as the "Warp in the West," would actually have unforeseen positive consequences for High Rock. The details of this event form the main quest of The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall.

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When multiple factions simultaneously activated the Numidium, an ancient Dwemer superweapon, untold devastation was wrought upon the land. Nevertheless, when the dust settled, High Rock consolidated itself into five well-managed, centralized states. Bretons often refer to this development as the "Miracle of Peace" due to their belief that Akatosh, Mara, and Stendarr played a role in their homeland's healing.

2/8 The Flora & Fauna

High Rock's flora and fauna can differ quite dramatically depending on the geographic location. In Glenumbra, pine, birch, and cypress trees grow in abundance throughout its forests and swamps. A collection of rolling hills and winding streams dot the landscape in Stormhaven. Rivenspire is characterized by mountains, while the Bangkorai region is lush with foliage.

The living beasts and creatures of High Rock are also quite diverse. Common varieties of fauna include bears, wolves, crocodiles, and horkers. Creatures known as nereids, mystical water spirits, dwell in certain aquatic locales. Harpies and spriggans are common sights as well. An unusual race of goblins called Riekr inhabit Wrothgar.

1/8 Place Of Refuge For Other Races

It's already been established that High Rock is home to more than just Bretons. The Orcish city of Orsinium has historically been located there. After the slave rebellion of Saint Alessia, the Ayleid elves of Cyrodiil were forced to flee to other lands, one of which was High Rock.

The ruins of their settlements are still visible lying dormant across the landscape. For example, Bisnensel in the middle of Halcyon Lake was originally built by refugees from Nenalata. One of the more interesting structures is Erokii, colloquially known as the Doomcrag. The purpose of this structure is unknown, although it's presumed the Ayleids had been attempting to replicate the Adamantine Tower. The Ayleids were eventually killed and the location now houses a cursed relic called the Lightless Remnant.

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