Douglas Goodall’s Posts

Released In:
Author (out of game):

Douglas Goodall was a designer with Bethesda Game Studios from 2001 to 2002. On the official forums, he posted as Affamu and Jobasha. After a long hiatus, he has returned to the community in 2023, releasing a number of mods and new texts.

In character: On the climate of Tamriel (03/09/01)

Jobasha has a slightly less abridged volume of Ffoulke’s Firmament in Jobasha’s Rare Books, though it is not quite as accurate as Jobasha would like.

Jobasha must say the Tenmar forest is much more what you might call “temperate” than the forests of Valenwood. Rain is quite common in northern Valenwood and the deserts of Elsweyr are hotter than the forests (and there is more desert than forest in Jobasha’s homeland).

A scholar once told Jobasha that Morrowind and High Rock were not as cold as Skyrim because of all the bays and islands and water. Jobasha cannot say if this is true.

In character: On the the legitamacy of Sermon Zero (03/18/01)

Poor Jobasha would never make up such an important thing. You can trust Jobasha.

Some wish to silence this Sermon. Is that not proof of its veracity? Jobasha will say only that there are truths and lies and perhaps even types of Zero in the Sermon that remain undiscovered.

Visit Jobasha’s Rare Books in Vivec City

On the difficulty of keeping lore consistent between games (04/08/01)

You have no idea. NO idea.

Seriously, I have re-learned the necessity of GREP. I only wish Arena and Daggerfall had left more documents for me to search… Redguard and the early Morrowind stuff is all easily searchable for contradictions. Still, I fear several are inevitable.

AND I should note that I was a big fan of the series, which makes this much easier… I only THOUGHT I knew everything about Tamriel… I can’t imagine coming to work here without already being something of an Elder Scrolls loremaster.

On Dwemer trivia (pre-Morrowind) (04/19/01)

“I never told you or have been told myself that House Dagoth was not *linked* to Dwarves. It’s just that House Dagoth *was not* Dwarves. See the difference?”

Right. The Dwemer didn’t divide themselves into “Houses” anyway.

“Actually, according to “The Songs of King Wulfharth”, some dude called Dagoth Ur killed Dumac the Dwarfking during the Battle of the Red Mountain. The Songs controverse each other, so take it with a grain of salt. After all, it’s a legend, and a Nordic one. Nords, after all, might not have a clue as to what was going on.”

Well, the Nords were there… Only the combined might of the Dunmer and Dwemer could drive the foreigners out to found Resdayn. After the Battle of Red Mountain and the mysterious disappearance, the Dunmer no longer needed Dwemer technology for defense — by then, they had the Tribunal.

“On a side note, Dunmer traditionally place family name first and given name second, as in “Indoril Nerevar” and “Hlaalu Brevur”.”

Um. I suppose you’re referring to the

If they place the family name first, how do you explain that the quote about Brevur the Betrayer was spoken by Paulus Hlaalu?

Your first guess was a good one, but it is not the right one. Not that it matters in the larger scheme of things.

For instance, Indoril Nerevar’s full and formal name would be Serjo Indoril Nerevar Mora.

I wouldn’t have believed it myself if I hadn’t just made it up.

Raptormeat: Lakene had a good point, but not many people ever thought that way. Certainly not enough to destroy a whole race… Unless, of course, a whole race can be destroyed by the actions of one person…

Xachariah II: The Dwemer did not use solar panels. Good guess, though.

“Only Boethiah can change a race’s skin. Only the Dwarves can cover it in tin foil.”

Carry on.

Clarifying some Khajiit information (04/19/01)

“It has got something to do with Khajiit Culture …”

YM: Biology

Their culture came from their odd biology. They missed out on Y’ferr’s decree, so Lorkhaj played a little trick on them…

“Depending on WHEN a Khajiit is born , she looks more human or feline. The most humanoid breed , looks almost like elves , but with tails and soft fur covering parts of the torso.”

One of the “humanoid” breeds looks like that.

“Depending on their Khajiit Breed they have different duties to do in Khajiit society…”

This is more a practical matter than some kind of caste-system. Obviously there are jobs you cannot do without opposable thumbs, etc.

If you ever move to Tamriel, keep in mind that there is a whole province just waiting to be introduced to the tasty fishy stick.

On the mortality of gods (04/20/01)

Arkay and the King of Worms were once mortal…

And what about Tosh Raka?

On the Khajiit breeds as seen in the games (04/20/01)

The breeds of Khajiit in the various games:

Arena: Ohmes
Daggerfall: censored>
Morrowind: suthay-Raht

There are no Ohmes or in Morrowind.

The “jaguar men” are cathay-Raht… a little different from the suthay-Raht. The screenshot Khajiit (see the above link or the screenshots section) are suthay-Raht. S’rathra and Joto were also suthay-Raht.

On what the Ta’Agra (04/22/01)

On Khajiit phalic barbs (04/22/01)

“There’s no accounting for taste.”

I don’t know who wrote/said that. I suspect it is a “modern” and anonymous quote. In any case, my profile will disprove this notion.

And, in the spirit of tastelessness, only some breeds of Khajiit have the… traits that Therris had in Real Barenziah. While all Terran felines have this trait (and many carnivorae have something similar), it makes no biological sense for the Khajiit to have it… unless Khajiit women are not sexually receptive year-round like human women or always ovulate during intercourse… The fiction from Daggerfall somewhat disproves that notion as well, thus the dilemna.

I thought of a couple explanations for this and eventually settled on one which I should save for later revelation.

I retroactively removed this trait from most of the Khajiit. I’m allowed to do that because I said so. So there. Therris was obviously a cathay-Raht, since he clearly wasn’t a Senche, [censored], [censored], or [haven’t made up a name yet]. Ohmes don’t have this trait at all and suthay-Raht (like the Khajiit in Morrowind) have it only to a slight degree.

So far, this is the only “design” topic I’ve brought up that even Ken was unwilling to comment on…

Perhaps if I get around to writing the other volumes of Khajiit Physiology, the game itself will have a more lucid explanation.

Answering some questions about Bretons and Knights (04/26/01)

1.What is the stereotype on the breton knights? (are they seen as the most chivalric?, mystic?, or what?)

There’s more than one order of Breton Knights… Why not make up one you like playing?

2.Which of the eight divines is held in the most accord by the bretons?

Like most of the Empire, Bretons worship all of the Eight Divines (and there’s a strong Emperor Cult in a few places), but they are not generally devout. The Bretons used to be ruled by witch-kings and High Rock has more witch covens than many provinces… Alas, this is not relevant for a Knight. If you’re looking at playing a Breton religious crusader, feel free. Each of the Divines supports a Knightly Order, in addition to the other Knightly Orders (Bretons are a Knightly people, if not a particularly religious one).

3.Any ideas on what the breton unique ability will be for Morrowind?

Yes.

4.Is the bretons penchant for magic tied in with them being a particularly relgious group of people?”

Their talent for magic comes from their history. There’s a clue in the link Raptormeat posted.

Perhaps you should read Heroic Achievements of the Bretons… That’s a joke, btw.

Is that joke too obscure?

On whether “the Daedra were created by the ‘intelligent races’ of Tamriel” (04/28/01)

A similar argument was made by the opponents of the Allesian heresy. Might I direct the interested scholar once more to volume XI of Marobar Sul’s Ancient Tales of the Dwemer… which doesn’t exactly answer your question, but is quite interesting.

More on the Hist (04/30/01)

“1) i wonder, will the Hist will be modeled as an NPC??? one gets killed, and has Argonian Eggs when you search it.
2) are the Hist related to Spriggans?”

No comment on the exact relationship between the Hist and the Argonian reproductive cycle, but it’s cool. As for egg-laying, this is an interesting question. While the majority of reptiles do lay eggs, there are a number that have live births (basically, the eggs hatch internally). I guess I had pictured the Argonians going more the live birth route, because they are so humanoid, but the concept of them laying eggs is an interesting one. Have to think more on that.

As for your questions:

1) Nope, no Hist NPCs to be found, although I think it’s a really cool idea. Remember, we’re gonna be in Morrowind this time around, and won’t be delving into murky Black Marsh quite yet. The Argonians are pretty touchy when it comes to crossing their borders.

2) Nah. Hist are much cooler.

On Ebonheart(s) (05/11/01)

There is a city of Vivec and a Castle Ebonheart and a city of Ebonheart. 2 of the 3 are in the game Morrowind. The third may or may not exist, but it would help explain some gaps, etc.

In character: Oaths of Khajiit (06/29/01)

Da aqqa dween.

Sun and water is all northern Khajiit know.

Do not mock the oaths of the Khajiit. Have you fought the followers of the rat god? The sand devils?

Take time to visit Alizahad. Then Jobasha thinks you will understand.

In character: on Argonia (06/29/01)

You speak of Argonia?

Argonia is across the Topal Sea! Not near at all! Jobasha invites those of you from the windward lands to visit the infamous ports of Senchal. Jobasha invites you to look across the sea… and see only water. No, Argonia does not truly border Elsweyr. Even the Nibenay River is too wide to see across.

(AFFA MU’s note: The windward lands… The wind blows west to east mostly in Elsweyr. All the water the sun sucks up in the Topal Sea end up over Black Marsh most of the year. Storms from further west usually die not far from Valenwood. Look at the PGE map. There are mountains north of the Tenmar forest. The storms that blow up from the ocean to the south usually drop their rain in the mountains or before… See! I’ve done my homework! And so did the people who made the PGE!)

In character: books with info on Khajiit (06/29/01)

Tell Jobasha what you wish to know.

The lands Imperials call Anaquina are desert, yes, but Pellitine is forest and marshes.

Come to Jobasha’s Rare Books in Vivec. Jobasha knows the book you are looking for. Myths told to Jobasha by a Clan Mother.

Jobasha’s Rare Books lies in what some call the Foreign Quarter. Once you are there, ask. They tell you where to go.

Jobasha talks about the price once you are here.

In character: more Q&A about Khajiit (06/30/01)

Khajiit in the Iliac Bay

You have not seen a Khajiit? ((surprise)) Khajiit travel throughout the Empire, even the Iliac bay. The unclawed see mostly Ohmes, Ohmes-raht, and Suthay-raht.

Tails

Jobasha does not answer your question about tails.

Senche-Tigers

The Senche and Senche-raht are forms of Khajiit. Imperials call them “tigers,” as their fur appears striped like a “tiger.” Imperials who served in the Legions call them “Battlecats.” A poor name, but Jobasha does not deny the Senche’s use in battle.

Senche stand taller than a man and can weigh as much as twenty men. The Senche-raht, naturally, are larger still and stand taller than two men and can weigh more than than fifty men. They are not built like “tigers,” what Jobasha would call an Alfiq or Alfiq-raht. Nor do Senche move like “tigers.” They walk on their heels, not their toes as do other Khajiit. They can outrun Jobasha, but they cannot turn quickly like an Alfiq or Pahmar.

Imperial Simulacrum

Jobasha also arrived in Tamriel after/during the “Simulacrum.” Jobasha’s elder colleague, Kier-Jo, suggests the period of the “Imperial Simulacrum” has not ended. Between you and Jobasha, Kier-Jo aquired an unfortunate skooma habit and you should not trust his words.

Jagar Tharn Despised

Tharn hid himself well. Few knew Jagar Tharn’s treachery, so few despised him. Jobasha is too young to truly answer your question. Perhaps you should speak with a Clan Mother.

Five Years War

Jobasha was not in western Elsweyr. Jobasha cannot answer your question.

For the Imperial perspective on the Five Years War with Valenwood, perhaps you should speak with Jobasha’s colleague in Ald’ruhn. Codus Callonus served in the Imperial Legions and wrote a book called Mixed-Unit Tactics in the Five Years War.

Argonia(ns)

Jobasha knows little of Argonians. Those you have met adopted Imperial ways and cause little trouble or fear. Here in Vvardenfell, Jobasa very rarely meets Argonians who have not adopted Imperial ways. Jobasha shudders. Jobasha thanks the moons that the Five Years War was not with Argonia.

Da aqqa dween,
Jobasha
Bookseller of Vivec City

AFFA MU, however, will answer your question about tails. Sort of.

Did the Khajiit in TES: Arena have tails? Do all felidae here on Earth have tails?
And yes, there were Khajiit in the Iliac Bay… Two kinds.

2002

On musical Argonians (01/31/02)

I thought they should use the marsh itself as their primary musical instrument like the Baka Forest People use rivers. And play lots of odd percussion instruments like water drums and bohdans and djimbes and udus. And make slowed-down bird-call noises.

I wanted the Khajiit to be arrhythmic jazz musicians.

In character: Dreugh Lore and the Dwemer (02/7/02)

Now just passing on a few comments from Dorisa Darvel in Balmora:

I’ve seen dreugh in the waters around Vvardenfell, but I have never studied them in detail. From what I’ve heard, dreugh are not only semi-human in appearance, but also semi-aquatic. I believe they go through a land-dwelling phase, much like the Sload.

They are an old race, as old as the races of men, but of course they do not predate the anticipations of the Tribunal.

Castles of coral? Perhaps such things already exist, much like Skar in Ald’ruhn. I do not believe the dreugh are capable of building castles under the water. That sounds like a child’s fable.

I do not believe that “Altmer of the sea” refers to the dreugh… Perhaps it is a reference to the Maormer? But I am no priest. There are many things in the Sermons of Vivec that are confusing to me.

The last battle with the Dwemer occured long ago in the first era. I do not know the exact year. After the fall of the Allessian Heresy and the Dirennis, but before the Redguards arrived and fall of Orsinium.

Another heresy you should avoid is the one of “Alandro Sul.” There are no reliable records of such a man, and no man could ever claim to be descended from Azura the way all Dunmer are. This is simply not true.

If you wish to learn more, you should make the Pilgrimage of the Ruddy Man to the Koal Cave just south of Gnisis. Speak with a priest at one of the temples. The Temple is open to foreigners, though few choose to join. If you are sincere, they will help you.

The statue you have seen paintings of is probably the one near the High Fane in Vivec City. This is a statue of Vivec killing the last of the N’chorbal, the terrible rock-skin bugs of Vvardenfell, not Vivec’s battle with the Ruddy Man.

In Character:the Akaviri invasion of Morrowind (03/07/02)

Jobasha has not heard that. Jobasha heard the Akaviri were driven from Morrowind by the spirit of King Wulfharth in the battle with Ada’Soom and not defeated until they met Reman Cyrodiil’s army. But all that was in the First Era so who can say? If Vivec caused the drowning, it would explain the difference in maps from the First Era.

In Character: Kier-jo on the Elven Lie (03/09/02)

Kier-jo thinks it is very much like a thing an Elder Way-warder would say.

“The Weakest Souls, called Men, will bring Sithis into every Quarter.”

“The Worshippers of the Unnamed Lord, know as ‘Argonians’ on Nirni, are the Descendents of Boethiah and the Serpent-men.”

“The Khajiit, created as Servants by the Aldmer, Rebelled against the Natural Order and Conspired with the Doom Drum to End the Merethic Era.”

Kier-jo hears it all before.

Tiber Septim was seen in more than one part of Tamriel at the same time and you are content.
Stormcrown was a Breton, no a Nord, no an Atmoran, and you sit and play in the sand.
A numidium rises in the West and does Eight Things for the Psijics and you do not question.
Your monkeys dance on the Tower and the stars change and you do not remember.
You read the words of the Sermon, but you are blind to the truths between them.
The darkness is reborn, crowned and conquering, and you pull the covers tighter and sleep.

When will you realize what happened to the Dwarves?

When will you Wake from the Elven Lie that all Men believe?

2004

A sample of Ta’agra in response to an attempt to crack Morrowind’s cyphers (07/17/04)

leased is Jobasha at your work. Very good for smooth skins and blunt ears. The Imperial and Telavanni ciphers broken? Oh, but Redoran is easiest of all! A Sermon here, a Sermon there… But so many sermons hide their secrets like naughty children. Jobasha would suggest a study of Sermon Zero if Jobasha were not so kind and wise. And the fine tapestries of my close friend your kind calls “Cherim.”

Of course, Jobasha could ruin this game for you, but where would Jobasha be then? No, the big secrets are for the ja-Kha’jay.

But Jobasha is so pleased, he forgets himself. Jobasha tells you three truths, gives you three gifts, like the eighth keeper on the road to the western lands…

Ahziss zwinthodurrarr rabi.
“I have a yellow writing utensil.
Ahziss liter ajo’iiliten rabiba.
“My brother has a wonderful girl.”
Ahziss aaliter vakasash.
“I wish I was my brother.”

Is the Cherim of Sermon Zero the same Cherim as the famous tapestrist? (07/18/04)

A common misunderstanding. Cherim is Jobasha’s good friend, shared much sugar, many sands. Cherim is famous tapestry maker, puts the ja’Kha’Jay in every one. White Gold is one of his best, one of the least often seen. It shows the White Tower, a dragon spirals around it, a moth priest at the top. Very famous moment, but few men remember.

Have you not heard of Muzariah and her death at the hands of the Three Angry Men? Muzariah was Indoril by birth and a painter by choice. Her best painting lies in the cellars of the Imperial Palace by Imperial decree. No one wishes to destroy such beauty, but no one wishes it to be seen. A dilemna.

But Jobasha says too much. 

2005

Codus on the cyphers used in Morrowind and the Empire (12/25/05)

I have not heard of this work. I do not believe I have a copy here in my shop. If you could bring me one, I might tell you more about Sermon Zero.

I’m also looking for an old Dwemer Lullaby called, “A Type of Zero Yet to be Discovered.” If you can find me a copy of that, I’d be grateful.

Business has been slow today. So few want to read books anymore. Most of you youngsters are going to that new play by Crassius Curio… So take a seat, and I’ll tell you how the Empire and the Houses code their messages.

These Redorans here in Ald’ruhn are the most honorable of the Dunmer, but sometimes they’re too direct. They lack subtlety. They use simple ciphers like replacing every A with a Z and every B with a Y or they rotate the alphabet by a few letters.

Imperials and Hlaalu both use an old cipher invented by a Breton near the beginning of the Third Era. This is kind of like the Redoran Ciphers, but the alphabet is rotated differently for each letter based on a keyword. This is hard to explain, so let me find some paper here, and I’ll show you how it’s done. If I wanted to say, “Drink your Valenwood Wine” with the key “key” it would come out like this:

DRINKYOURVALENWOODWINE +

KEYKEYKEYKEYKEYKEYKEYK =

NVGXOWYYPFEJORUYSBGMLO

Often, you’ll find that Imperial messages use keys like “Emperor” or “Cyrodil.” The Hlaalu are a bit more clever with their keys.

I am not sure exactly how the Telvanni code their messages, but they may, indeed, be “as bad as Godel, Escher, Bach.” I’ve heard, and this is just rumor–and this goes no further, mind you–that it has something to do with what they call “prime” numbers and the fact that the Daedric alphabet has only 24 letters. I don’t quite know what that means. Perhaps Divayth Fyr could explain more? I hear you’ve spoken with him and lived.

Well, that’s enough talk for one day, so I’ll say just one more thing. These “secret” messages you’ve found in Sermon Zero and the 36 Sermons of Vivec are child’s play. They should tell you one thing and one thing only: look deeper.

More from Codus on the cyphers used in Morrowind and the Empire (12/25/05)

The Sermons are attributed to Vivec, but I’ve never heard any priest say anything about it. I don’t know who wrote them, and I don’t know anybody who does. If not Vivec, who?

Sermon Zero is not one of the Sermons, at least according to the Temple. Considering it was “discovered” by Jobasha, I’d be cautious. I’d be extra cautious when it starts out by saying it isn’t true, “This is the truth of Sermon Zero, which is neither one.” Maybe it’s supposed to be read backwards, like those monkey rants from the fools in Temple Zero.

Remember, the best place to hide something is in plain sight. None of these “secret” messages which scholars run after like a dog chasing his tail. Maybe you should take some time studying Cherim’s tapestries.

In character: Jobasha’s note on the Lusty Argonian Society (12/25/05)

Most of Jobasha’s books are still in boxes, still unpacked. But here comes a young Breton to Jobasha’s new shop, desperate to sell. Among the Breton’s books (most of them, sadly, autobiographical) is this unusual item. It is heavily stained and, as we booksellers say, “slightly foxed.” It appears to be notes from a historical society meeting.

Jobasha shares it with you here, for it talks of protonymics and perhaps of neonymbiosis. If you want, Jobasha sells it cheap, for it amuses Jobasha, but Jobasha believes none of it.

2006

Jobasha On the Elven Lie (01/02/06)

Jobasha says don’t you fall for the Elven Lie. The Tower is older than the elves, as old as music. For it is the Word and the start of words and the end (and the end of ALMSIVI as Vivec may say or not say).

The Tower of today is not The Tower of yesterday. Jobasha’s heresy lies in knowing even Ahnurr changes, as do all stars when they can walk.

Where do you go when Alkosh breaks?
So where are you now as Alkosh holds the stars to their courses?
Speak, if you know the words. Keep silent, if you remember.

Wise Azurah gives us the Lattice… But the moons, in death, are distillers only. As glass moves light, but requires a flame.

The Lattice breaks before. The monkeys dance. Lorkhaj sends a star. That star, chained and unchained, pokes holes in the moons once, twice, three times.

We Khajiit must climb, then, in a way men and mer cannot. And with us we carry the sugar of a star or a bone or a watery king. For if sugar is not worthy of a Walker, is it worthy of Ja-Kha’jay?

So Jobasha does not fear. All “et’Ada” have laws, customs, weakness. Even if they “cannot be spelled, pronounced, ennumerated in the Mundus” (and there is another weakness of the Elven Lie).

“The Dragon is bound with noble sighs.
The Serpent is bound with shifting tones.
The Sun is bound with metal flames.
The Earth is bound with secret knots.”
— The Soft Doctrines of Magnus Invisible

But perhaps Jobasha should give an even more famous example:

“Daedroth, do you keep the faith?”
“Bide, and we abide. Turn, and we return.”

Who knows, survives.

On the fate of Kier-jo (01/02/06)

Kier-jo very sad case, very poor Khajiit. Kier-jo has many new ideas, some of them not so good ideas. Then Kier-jo looks for wild elves and nymphs. Kier-jo has great weakness for elven beauty. Elves maybe not like Kier-jo so much. Scholarship suffers. Very sad story. No one hears from Kier-jo for many years.

On Wulf being Talos (01/03/06)

If you were the ghost of a god, how would you know?

2023

Did the Hist give Argonians boobs to blend in better? (11/06/23)

The Hist should be too alien to figure something like that out. Like if they heard (via however anything communicates with the Hist) that boobs would make Argonians blend in better, they should have given ALL Argonians boobs. And then a couple generations later when they heard everyone thought that was weird, they should have put them back to normal. And then a couple generations later, still hearing complaints (from who?) that Argonians don’t blend in or aren’t attractive, give females beautiful jewel-patterned scales and males long, beautiful head feathers. Or something like that. Because they are Hist and just don’t understand the other races. And then there’s the question of why they want Argonians to blend in more or be more attractive in the first place and what goal that serves.

Imperial Library Discord

Sload naming convention (11/11/23)

For what it’s worth, IIRC, sload names mostly started with a letter-apostrophe, based on caste or something. I think N’ in N’Gasta was for wizards. I don’t recall the others. I have no idea if current ES is sticking with that.

Tamriel Rebuilt Discord
Scroll to Top