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Choosing A Race In Elder Scrolls Online


With 10 of them available, choosing a race in Elder Scrolls Online can be a daunting task, especially if you’re completely new to the Elder Scrolls world. If you’ve played an Elder Scrolls game in the past then you’re somewhat familiar with the different races as well as the flexibility so you can customize your character as you see fit regardless of race. Or you might just have an affinity for a specific race, such as an elf, and you’re completely unconcerned with the differences between the races. If you don’t then it is helpful to have some information ahead of time because even though it is fun to jump right in and see what the game has to offer, it can be problematic to reach level 10 or more and then realize you’re not particularly fond of your character. Yes you’re restricted to either the Ebonheart Pact, Aldmeri Dominion or Daggerfall Covenant based on the race you choose (unless you have the Explorer’s Pack) but outside of the different starting scenery, the quests all deal with political subterfuge within the alliance, cultists, and local problems in some capacity so you won’t have to worry about the different quests being inferior based on the alliance you choose. And of course the main quests and the NPC guild quests are all the same. One thing I love about the Elder Scrolls series is your character progresses based on how you use it so if you want to be better using a two-handed sword then the answer is to use a two-handed sword constantly, and your proficiency with it will improve and more skills will be available to you. It’s this type of freedom that will allow you to take one race and explore the many different possibilities. However there is a Racial skill line, and knowing each one ahead of time can be advantageous and so this guide will give you some help in choosing a race by listing the skill lines available for each. You can use the skill points you earn on these racial traits and as you progress through the game you’ll be able to further increase each skill 3 or 4 times for added benefit.

Daggerfall Covenant

Redguards – “Racial skills reflect ancestral legacy as swordmasters”

  • Shield Affinity: Increases experience gained with One-Handed and Shield
  • Vigor: Increases Stamina recover while in combat
  • Conditioning: Increases Max Stamina
  • Adrenaline Rush: Restores Stamina when damaging enemy with melee attack

Orcs – “The racial skills of the Orcs reflect their people’s harsh mountain environment”

  • Heavy Armor Expertise: Increases XP gain with Heavy Armor Skill Line
  • Brawny: Increases Max Health and Max Stamina
  • Robust: Increase Health regeneration while in combat
  • Swift: Reduces Sprint cost and increase sprint speed

Bretons – “Affinity with spellcraft, giving bonuses to magicka and spell resistance.”

  • Light Armor Affinity: Increases experience gained with Light Armor Skill
  • Gift of Magnus: Increases Max Magicka
  • Spell Resistance: Increases Spell Resistance
  • Magicka Mastery: Reduces the Magicka cost of Spells

Aldmeri Dominion

Altmer (High Elf) – “Skills reflect their magical affinity by increasing damage and Magicka restoration.”

  • Destruction Talent: Increases experience gain with Destruction Staff Skill
  • Spellcharge: Increases Magicka recovery while in combat
  • Gift of Magnus: Increases Max Magicka
  • Elemental Talent: Increases damage with Cold, Fire or Shock effects

Bosmer (Wood Elf) – “Improved archery, stamina and stealth”

  • Archery Expertise: Increases experience gain with the Bow Skill
  • Vigor: Increases Stamina recovery in combat
  • Resist Affliction: Increases poison, disease resistance and maximum Stamina
  • Stealthy: Improves Stealth radius and damage done while Stealthed

Khajiit – “Bonuses to Stealth, Health regeneration and combat”

  • Medium Armor Expertise: Increases experience gain with Medium Armor Skill
  • Robust: Increases Health Regeneration in combat
  • Stealthy: Improves Stealth radius. Increases damage done while Stealthed
  • Carnage: Increases Critical rating for melee attacks

Ebonheart Pact

Argonian – “Racial skills reflect their perilous swamp environment”

  • Restoration Expertise: Increases experience gain with Restoration Skill line
  • Amphibious: Increases swimming speed by 50% and effectives of potions
  • Argonian Resistance: Increases Maximum Health and Poison and Disease resistance
  • Quick to Mend: Increases healing received

Dark Elf – “Racial skills reflect their intellect and natural agility”

  • Ambidexterity: Increases experience gain with Dual Wield Skill
  • Dynamic: Increases maximum Magicka and Stamina
  • Resist Flame: Increases Fire Resistance and maximum Magicka
  • Flame Talent: Increases Spell Power with fire effects

Nord – “Racial Skills reflect strong and hardy natures”

  • Two Handed Weapon Expertise: Increases experience gain with Two-Handed Weapons
  • Robust: Increases Health Regeneration in combat
  • Resist Frost: Increases Cold Resistance and Maximum Health
  • Rugged: Increases Armor rating


And last but not least:

Imperial – “Racial skills reflect their affinity for combat and diplomacy”

  • Shield Affinity: Increases experience gained with One-Handed and Shield
  • Tough: Increases Max Health
  • Conditioning: Increases Max Stamina
  • Red Diamond: Melee Attacks have chance to restore Health

The Imperial race is only available through an additional purchase and they can join any alliance of your choosing. All these skill lines are percentage based so the more skill points you use for each (3 max) the more the benefits increase. And hopefully this guide will help get you on your way to becoming emperor.

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