This page provides general information on what to expect when exploring dungeons. Here, dungeons is being used as a general term to refer to the underground sections of all the various places in the game: Ruins and caves. Some of the information is also relevant to any place where you are likely to encounter random creatures and/or loot.
Bipedal, frog-like creatures with a primitive culture and basic utilization of weapons. Grummite enemies can include shamans that use magicka, and archers that can use poison arrows.
Any of the different wildlife or creatures in the Isles. Includes Elytra, Flesh Atronachs, and Gnarls.
Undead, such as ethereal spirits, skeletons, zombies, and shambles.
Heretics are mage-type NPCs that occupy the Mania side of the Isles. Similar to other mage NPCs, Heretics wear faction specific clothing, utilize a limited variety of leveled spells in combat, and may carry (and use) a variety of potions, poisons, and scrolls.
Specific to the faction; Heretics summon Hungers, prefer blunt weapons, and possess a lesser power that allows them to dispel mind-affecting effects. Wearing a Heretic robe and hood provides a limited disguise; reducing the area of triggered aggression.
Zealots are mage-type NPCs that occupy the Dementia side of the Isles. Similar to other mage NPCs, Zealots wear faction specific clothing, utilize a limited variety of leveled spells in combat, and may carry (and use) a variety of potions, poisons, and scrolls.
Specific to the faction; Zealots summon Flesh Atronachs, prefer blade weapons, and have some capacity for spell absorption. Wearing a Zealot robe and hood provides a limited disguise; reducing the area of triggered aggression.
Root tunnels have organic style traps, such as spiky roots that shoot out of holes in the tunnel wall, and mushrooms that release a cloud of poisonous gas that deals damage over time. These traps are triggered by pressure sensitive mushrooms that can be avoided by careful movement. However, due to the large amounts of foliage in the tunnels the traps are usually well camouflaged and can prove fatal.
Ancient ruins also have deadly traps. Mainly, these take the form of statues of grummites, scalons or just monstrous heads that fire magical projectiles from their mouths. These projectiles sometimes induce negative effects. The statues will continue to fire at any adventurer in their line of sight until they move away. As not all statues are active, the best tactic is just to move normally until hit, or you see a magic bolt coming toward you. Then run to a corridor or some kind of cover. Alternatively, if there are monsters around, maneuver yourself so they are between you and the statue, then they will die quite ironically.
Loot is usually dependent on level, and can include generic magic and mundane items from standard Oblivion, as well as Shivering Isles specific items.