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General:Mournhold (canceled game)

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"You enter Mournhold, lost City-State of the first empire.
It is said that a great evil resides under this city, slowly driving its citizens mad.
It is said that none have ever seen the bodies of the slain after the a battle is over on this soil..."
Mournhold City-State Introduction

The Elder Scrolls Chapter II: Mournhold was the envisioned follow up to Arena set in Morrowind, initially starting as an expansion pack, and later becoming a sequel game instead. However, the setting of choice was eventually switched Daggerfall and the Iliac Bay.[1][2]


Expansion PackEdit

Mournhold (Arena)

When originating the Elder Scrolls franchise during Arena, Lead Designer Vijay Lakshman's vision for it was Dungeons & Dragons translated onto video game computer systems, where you would establish a core rulebook or campaign, in this context the core campaign was Arena, and then expand on that core with subsequent campaigns. What today we would call Add-Ons or DLC, Lakshman wanted to install as a franchise shtick, which is why the "tome like" subtitle of The Elder Scrolls Chapter I: was added to Arena, with the implication being that this tome would have new Chapters as episodic expansion packs released over time which you could perhaps pick up at the store or download, that would change your world and give you a new questline to play. With each new chapter fleshing out one particular province of the game at a time.[2][3][4]

The first expansion was to be called The Elder Scrolls Chapter II: Mournhold, a gothic horror adventure module featuring a vampiric castle with vague resemblances to the Ravenloft adventure module for Dungeons & Dragons.[2][5][6] Presumably, this Chapter would have followed up on the premise teased in Mournhold's city introduction text from the base game.


The expansion pack model had to be abandoned due to the desire to expand engine capabilities for sequel content and the lack of internal market infrastructure for mini expansions at the time.[2][6] Subsequently, the concept of Chapters were transformed from expansion packs into full scale sequel games, which continued the idea of fleshing out one region of Tamriel at a time for each subsequent game.

Initially, the development team were continuing with Mournhold and Morrowind as the sequel's setting, but as the design evolved over some weeks to months of preproduction, the setting was moved to Daggerfall and the Iliac Bay.[1] Design work on the sequel was being spearheaded by Ted Peterson, who preferred to set the game in Daggerfall rather than Mournhold. Peterson felt the technology couldn't handle the mountainous geography that Mournhold demanded.[7] Additionally, he reasoned that it would be a safer bet to have European-looking Bretons and African-looking Redguards as the main characters on stage for players to identify with, rather than Dark Elves and Lizard Men.[7] He also admits to having a predilection for the name Daggerfall early on.[7] This change may or may not have been inspired by the homebrew Dungeons & Dragons campaign the designers were running around the time of the setting switch, as their campaign took place centrally in High Rock.