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General Elder Scrolls Weaseling

Author: 
Qwerty

Why are there no horses in Morrowind?

For two reasons. First, Dark Elves like them as a foodstuff. Second, native grasses of Morrowind give horses a bad, and often terminal, case of tummy ache.

Source: Ken Rolston in one of his pre-Morrowind online interviews. Reproduced from memory. If anyone has the original text, please let site staff know.

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Why are all Dark Elves so skinny? Where are fat Dunmer?

For the very same reason. Since there are no horses in Morrowind, the locals have to run to get to places. As a result, they get a lot of exercise and stay slim.

Source: Mark "BlueDev" Nelson, in a personal conversation.

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Why are there no dragons in Morrowind?

Skylamps. They would actually be, moretheless, the Cliffracers. In short, the cliffracers came to Vvardenfell and pushed the dragons out. At one time, dragons flourished in Vvardenfell, being drawn to the comfort of the warmth in Red Mountain. The cliffracers grew in numbers (just as they appear to do in MW, since they seem to pop up behind you every 8 seconds). At first, this was not a problem for dragons. They were actually pretty good eating. But, just as a praying mantis is a big king of bugs, 1000 ants can easily take him. Thus, the dragons found themselves in a losing battle over the territory. Food sources and dwellings became overrun and the dragons simply packed their bags and moved on. The cliffracers plagued Red Mountain and in the end, drove the dragons out.

Some say the dragons moved on closer to Cyrodil, where they gained shelter and security from the Empire, along with dragons from other parts of Tamriel. Dragons are very sacred to the Empire, and as long as the Empire protects the dragons, the dragons MUST offer services to the Empire, such as aiding and protecting the Imperial forces in war (Redguard, the fight for Stros M'kai).

Just a little "in the know" for those who are curious about dragons. They DO exist, just not everywhere. Even in Cyrodil, where the majority of dragons may be, they are scarcely seen. Could it be they can shapeshift and use human form?

Source: Posted on the Official Forums by WormGod.

Skylamps over Dagot Ur
Skylamps along Dagoth-Ur

 

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"Daikatana" is not a correct Japanese word.

Daikatana is an Akaviri weapon. "Daikatana" is a word from the Akaviri language, not from Japanese. It sounds Japansese by pure coincidence.

Source: discussion at the official Morrowind forum.

For this one, some explanation is in order.
Linguistically speaking, the word "Daikatana" is an abomination. It consists of two Japanese (CJK, to be precise) characters - "big" and "sword". Each of them has two phonetic representations, two ways of reading - "on" and "kun", like this:

Character On Kun
Big dai ô
Sword katana

Circumflex is used here to denote long vowels.
Most of the time, when a composite word is formed, it's made up of on's. In some cases, it's made up of kun's. But combining on and kun in one word is, basically, wrong. There are some exceptions to the rule, but this isn't one of them. "Daitô" is fine, "ôkatana" is permissible, but "daikatana" isn't.

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Why are Dwemer called "Dwarves"?

Long time ago, Dwemer met and made friends with a race of intelligent Giants. The Giants would call their Elven neighbours "Dwarves". Eventually, others adopted this name for the Dwemer as well.

I don't remember who made this up. Please come forth so that I can give credit.

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In Daggerfall, sulfur is red.

Source: Ted "Tedders" Peterson, in an e-mail, wrote the following:

I know that pure sulfur isn't red, but if you check out the article I attached, the red stuff (...) is considered sulfur as it consists primarily of the stuff with, as you say, some chemical impurities. I don't think it necessarily follows that the purity of the ingredients is what's important in alchemy, like the Potionmaker. It may be that the additional chemicals in red sulfur is what gives it its unique magical properties, just as the rarity of certain imperfections in diamonds that make them blue or yellow give them additional value. Incidentally, if at any point you want me to 'fess up that it was a simple art mistake, let me know. It's just more fun to argue the unarguable.

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Why is the land of Khajiiti called "Elsweyr"? Who would agree to live "Elsewhere"?

Elsweyr did not exist as a separate polity until the kingdoms of Anequina and Pellitine made an alliance. While doing so, they recalled an old Khajiiti proverb that went along the lines of "perfect society is always elsewhere". In their optimism about the new alliance, they tried to bring forth good luck by appealing to that proverb.

Source: Ted Peterson, in an e-mail

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Why don't clothes in Morrowind have a health rating?

Clothes don't have a Health rating like armor and weapons do. Why? Well...

The tailors of Morrowind, due to the unusually harsh environments, have been forced to use unusual materials for their clothing needs. While they first experimented with a wool woven from the fur of the waste rat, this proved to be unpopular. The material, while fairly durable, stank to high heaven when wet. Additionally, the scent tended to attract other waste rats, making the garments especially unsuitable for children and the elderly.

After many years of searching the continent for a suitable material (now referred to as the Great Chafing), the intrepid craftsmen discovered the silk of the blight moth. Though not truly a blighted creature, it's coloration resembled the ash grey left by the mysterious disease infecting the land. The silk, it turned out, was incredibly resilient, pliable, and easy to work with. It also readily accepted magicks, making it a popular material for enchanters. After years of experimentation, tailors perfected the weaving of this delicate silk into thread.

Today, you'll find almost all of the clothing of Morrowind is made of this super strong blight moth silk, as it never degrades, is highly resistant to damage from the elements, and even seems to repair itself from damage. Lo, the wonders of Morrowind.

Source: Posted on the official forums by Mark "BlueDev" Nelson

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Shady Grove? What Shady Grove?

Remember the introductory movie of TESA: Redguard? Specifically, the part where the camera zooms in slowly on the map of the West Tamriel? In the middle of Hammerfell, there's a place name "Shady Grove". On this screenshot it's pretty prominent:

Screenshot from the Redguard intro

Albeit it sounds innocently enough, it's in fact an easter egg. "Shady Grove" is the name of a street and of a metro station not far from Bethesda's office in Rockville, MD.

A map of northern Rockville, MD

The red pushpin on the map above denotes the location of the Bethesda HQ, as found at their own site.

Source: Qwerty's creative observation

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Inconsistency with the Shadowkey map

Well the thing with map making is that the maps are done from the point of view of the cartographer. A resident of Tamriel may not have access to a flight spell to gauge accuracy and certainly would not have access to a satellite photo. So is it really so far fetched to believe that a cartography from that area of Hammerfell would draw his map with inaccuracies? It seems obvious the maps highest function was to point out the most important areas that a traveller to that area would need to take note of.

Source: Developer Michael Wagner AKA Sentinel, on the forums

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Mariah on fire

Mariah is a gardener in Stros M'Kai City; she's a Redguard, like most natives. Also, she has the most annoying voice in the whole game. Ken Rolston and Todd Howard have once apologized for Mariah, on the record. You only need her once for the storyline to proceed.

Here are samples of her "sweet" voice:

[swf file="dogate_mariah1.mp3"]

[swf file="dogate_mariah2.mp3"]

[swf file="dogate_mariah3.mp3"]

[swf file="dogate_mariah4.mp3"]

There's a reference to her in Morrowind, which you can find here. And you can set her on fire with a torch; that's a Redguard easter egg.

Source: Qwerty

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Soul Cairn Tombstones

On Battlespire's third level, the Soul Cairn, there is a cemetery with tombstones on which rather silly things are sometimes written.

Screenshot from Battlespire

Here are all the inscriptions:

Sacred honor, loyal love, eternal service.

The Soul Serves that Never Dies The Saint that Saved Us All

Genius and Power passes. Peace and Constance triumphs.

Shift my oars and wherry, For I shall pass over In the company of friends and lovers.

Thus do I cheat the worms of their unjust plunder.

I was, and wasn't, and was again forever.

Neither prophet nor profit, we pass empty-handed into the light.

In these worlds beyond the sun no darkness hides the distant shore.

We have done, and do, and will do. The gentle flowers of the sun doth triumph o'er the grave.

Poor Alex... Exported from this life.

Quadrille Pig gave up the ghost.

Source: Sinder Velvin

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The Mock Turtle

The Mock Turtle is a reference to the story from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. In Battlespire's first level, there is a very interesting Mock Turtle in a secret room which can be reached by throwing yourself from the Star Galley bridge onto the walkway below and then following the walkway to a teleporter. Here's a shot of the walkway as seen from above.

Screenshot from Battlespire

When you activate the Mock Turtle, this is the message that you get:

The Mock Turtle introduces himself as a member of the rare species of Great Turtle from which is made the famous Mock Turtle Soup, the Soup of Kings. "Sit down and don't say a word until I've finished. Once," said the Mock Turtle with a deep sigh, "I was a real Turtle." The Mock Turtle relates a tragic and lengthy tale about going to school in the sea, and about his studies in the obscure disciplines of the Quadriva Arithmetia - Ambition, Distraction, Uglification, and Derision -- and the courses of instruction in Mystery, ancient and modern, with Seaography, Drawling, Stretching, Fainting in Coils, Laughing and Grief. At last, when it becomes clear that his story has no point, you become restless. "Oh dear," said the Mock Turtle. "I'm afraid I've bored you. You've been so kind to listen to the maunderings of an ancient reptile... Please say my name backwards where it will do the most good, accept as a token of my gratitude a product of my researches in the field of Speculative Ontology."

Screenshot from Battlespire

Source: Sinder Velvin

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