Oblivion:High Elf

Oblivion: Races
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Illustration of a typical Altmer male

The Altmer, or self-titled "Cultured People", are a tall, golden-skinned race, hailing from Summerset Isle. They are also known as High Elves by the denizens of Tamriel. In the Empire, "High" is often understood to mean proud or snobbish, and as the Altmer generally personify these characteristics, the "lesser races" generally resent them. Altmer live two to three times as long as humans; with a 200-year-old Altmer being old and a 300-year-old Altmer being very, very old. Altmer consider themselves to be the most civilized culture of Tamriel; the common tongue of the continent is based on Altmer speech and writing, and most of the Empire's arts, crafts, laws, and sciences are derived from Altmer traditions.

The Altmer are the most strongly gifted in the arcane arts of all the races, and they are very resistant to diseases. However, they are also somewhat vulnerable to magicka, fire, frost, and shock, which makes them very weak against their strongest point - magic. They are among the longest living and most intelligent races of Tamriel, and they often become powerful magic users due to both their magical affinity and the many years they may devote to their studies.

For more information, see the main lore article.

A list of all the Altmer in Cyrodiil can be found here.






In-Game DescriptionEdit

Also known as "Altmer" in their homeland of Summerset Isle, the High Elves are the most strongly gifted in the arcane arts of all the races. However, they are also somewhat vulnerable to fire, frost and shock.


High Elves are the best choice for a pure Mage character, with +10 bonuses to Destruction, Alteration and Mysticism; the maximum Magicka in the game is obtained by playing an Altmer with the Atronach birthsign. Due to their weakness to Fire, Frost and Shock damage, however, an Altmer mage should beware of other Mages. They are most powerful against non-magic-using characters, utilizing their more proficient magical skills to outsmart and confound their opponents.

An Altmer can be successful in nonviolent roles, as they profit off creating spells, selling goods in the market, and making and selling potions, all of which are strongly enhanced by the Altmer's innate magical talents. High Elves are the principal academic, professional mages, who may reside in the Imperial Arcane University, studying books on magic, enchanting weapons, binding souls and selling scrolls to the mundane inhabitants of the Imperial City. They dress in robes and form a large part of the Imperial Mages Guild. Most Altmer NPCs in Cyrodiil are notably wealthy and learned.

Enemy Altmer will most frequently be encountered as Conjurers (including Conjurer Adepts) and Necromancers (including Necromancer Adepts) in Cyrodiil, as well as Heretics, Zealots, and Priests of Order in the Shivering Isles. All Marauder Battlemages are also high elves. Among vampires, the Witchhunters and Sorcerers are Altmer, including Sorcerer Vampire Matriarchs and Patriarchs. All of these Altmer mages usually dress in robes (sometimes enchanted) rather than armor, and attack with lightweight weapons (daggers, shortswords, or maces) or fire staves at their opponents.

Race-specific DialogueEdit

"Something on your mind, goldenrod?" (if disposition is between 20 and 30)
"Greetings, High Elf" (if disposition is 30+)
"Greetings, fellow Altmer." (if disposition is 30+ and if the NPC is also an Altmer)
Friendly Greetings (if disposition is 70+)
"Welcome! If you wish to talk, it is really no trouble at all."
"How delightful! Welcome."
"An honor to be sure."
"You're in good company, friend. Welcome."
"You seem quite intriguing. Please, share your thoughts."
Normal Greetings (if disposition is between 30 and 70)
"Greetings. What exactly do you require of me?"
"I see you. Hello."
"All right then, I'm listening."
"Any time now."
"Ah, how quaint. How do you do?"
Brusque Greetings (if disposition is under 30)
"Identify yourself."
"Is it necessary that you speak with ME?"
"Ask a commoner."
"You creatures are all the same."
"This is an unwelcome surprise."
In combat
"You're a traitor to your own race!" (If the combatant is also an elf)
"You're outmatched, Elf!" (if the combatant is not an elf)
"You Elves are all the same! All flash and no fury!" (if the combatant is not an elf)
"Puny Elf! I'll pick my teeth with your spine!" (if the combatant is an Orc)

NPC ReactionsEdit

Reactions affect the base disposition of NPCs towards you depending on your relative races.

Altmer +5
Argonians -10
Bosmer -5
Bretons -5
Dunmer -10
Imperials -5
Khajiit -10
Redguards -5