Hello, I'm SubtleCynicism (also Uberdetastic on the official forums). While I made contributions to the UESP fairly often for over half a year, I never decided to register until July of 2007. I have a total of over 400 hours logged with Oblivion and about 150 logged with Morrowind, and I have been around the block a few times. If you have any questions about Oblivion, please feel free to post on my User Talk page or send me an email.
What I Do
The larger portion of my contributions are minor edits; grammar, spelling, and the like. For some strange reason, I really can't stand grammatical errors, especially when it comes to punctuation, spelling, and capitalization. Mostly, I like to try and keep information within articles consistent and canonical, as well as interesting so that people will actually want to read it. Most people do not have problems with my edits, as the majority of them are small tweaks that help the flow of an article or section. However, if you feel that I have edited your work in a way that you feel is wrong, don't hesitate to discuss it with me on my talk page. I might be able to help explain why I changed your article, and of course there's a chance that I messed up, in which case you owe it to yourself to bring it to my attention so that I can apologize and undo the edit.
Occasionally, I will start on a project or larger contribution. Most of the time, they take a lot longer than I had planned, mainly because I get sidetracked with editing other things. I'm not too big on Wiki formatting yet, but with practice comes ability, so I'll see how it goes. I've recently become more accustomed to surfing Oblivion and Shivering Isles pages, looking for things that need an overhaul or a large contribution. You can view any of my current or completed projects in the Projects section of my page.
As well as editing, I also love to answer questions about Oblivion, especially when it comes to lore. I know a thing or two about the game, and I have my share of gameplay tips and tidbits to distribute. Drop me a line if you're stuck, or if you want to know how to do something, or even if you're getting bored and want something fun to do, and I'll do my best to help you out.
- Oblivion Places Redesign Project: Now that I've managed to get my hands on a PC version of Oblivion, I'll be providing walkthroughs much more efficiently.
- Oblivion Quest Stages: I've noticed that while some of the individual quest pages feature the proper Quest Stage coding, most do not. I plan to add the Stage codes to the quests. This project as actually more personal, as it is the result of a tragedy; yes, there was an unfortunate accident in which I mistakenly saved over the file of my main character, Dastrian. Using the console (and most notably the quest stages), I am attempting to recreate my file the best that I can. This project will go hand-in-hand with that effort.
- Oblivion Books: I am doing some extensive work on the Oblivion Books section. The major bulk of the work is on the Non-Magic section, where I will be trying to fill in the large amount of missing information in the tables.
If you have something you would like me to look in to, email me and I'll check it out.
- Mage Apprentice Page: Created the Mage Apprentice page, under a larger effort to expand information in the Followers section. Running Time: 2 Hours
- Traps Page: I went in and rewrote most of the material on the traps of Oblivion. Little core information was changed, but most of the traps were completely rewritten. The changes were largely cosmetic. Running Time: 5 Hours
- Learning the Daedric Alphabet: Yes, it's true. With the addition of the excellent article on the Daedric alphabet, I learned it. I now have it committed to memory. :) Running Time: A day or so, whenever I had free time to memorize.
Elder Scrolls Title: Oblivion
Birthsign: The Apprentice
Class: Astralite (custom Magic class)
Favored Attributes: Intelligence, Willpower
Major Skills: Alteration, Conjuration, Destruction, Illusion, Marksman, Mysticism, Restoration
Description: Born in the native Breton province of High Rock, Dastrian began life as the son of aristocratic mages who ruled one of the many city states that comprised the primary government of the land. His father and mother were both loving parents and fair rulers, and they wanted only the best for their son. As such, Dastrian was given the best teaching available, and after showing a prodigial ability in the magicks, he was submitted to the Council of Magicks. As was tradition within his parents' lands, Dastrian was to be placed before the Council so that he could be studied and analyzed. The Council decreed that Dastrian's ability would benefit most under the care of the Order of the Astralites. Complying with the advice of the Council, Dastrian's parents presented him to the grandmaster of the order, who eagerly admitted him to the ranks. As Dastrian grew, his power advanced exponentially, and on the eve of his eighteenth birthday, he was officially granted the title of Astralite. Eager and willing to continue his studies, Dastrian was persistent in his seeking of tasks to prove himself worthy of the order. To accomodate the green student, the grandmaster administered a simple task that was far within Dastrian's abilities. However, unforseen complications would not only land the young man in prison, but exile him from his homeland, to which he would never be able to return. There were reports of a local gang causing trouble in a small harbor town south of the capital city. Informants were specific about a ship docked that was a suspected transport of low-brow stolen goods. Dastrian was trusted with the inspection of the ship under the authority of the Council of Magicks, as well as the apprehension of the suspected individuals. After arriving in the port town, Dastrian quickly found the ship he was looking for. It was not outstanding, but rather inconspicuous; obviously it was not built to draw attention to itself. Stepping onto the gangplank, he looked around, saw no crew or passengers, and decided that their absence was the perfect opportunity to search the ship. As he stepped on deck, he failed to notice a pair of eyes looming in the shadow of the harbor buildings, watching him. They waited long enough to watch Dastrian's head disappear below deck and then vanished. Dastrian poked around in the cabins and found no contraband or illicit materials. Disappointed with his findings, he turned to leave the ship, but something caught his eye. A small handle lay on the floorboards in the corner of the hall, partially covered by a rug. Lifting up the trapdoor, Dastrian was shocked by what he saw. Down in the shadow of the bowels of the ship sat about a dozen people, of every race and size, tied to the moors by ropes and chains who would be doomed to lives of servitude as slaves. Next to them sat open boxes of Cyrodillic Brandy, Skooma, Moon Salts, and other illegal consumables. Realizing that the ship in which he stood was far more than a fencing transport, he told the prisoners that he would return with guards and hurried onto the deck. Racing across to the docks, he was stopped by a loud, authoritative voice. "Stop and lie down on the floor!" Looking to his left, Dastrian saw a mob of guards with brandished weapons. Fearing that any attempt to explain his situation would only anger the guards more, he complied with their commands and was taken into custody. The gang member that saw Dastrian board had lied to the guards, notifying them of the ships' contents and insisting that the "dangerous man" aboard the ship was its owner. Later, Dastrian was held up before a council comprised of the leaders of each city-state. The Council convicted him of both human and drug trafficking and presented him to Imperial officials to be transported to the Imperial Prison in Cyrodiil to await further sentencing. It was also decreed that Dastrian be banished from High Rock, never to be permitted within its borders again. It is uncertain what the future of Tamriel may have been if Dastrian remained in High Rock, but he feels that despite his past misfortune, it was his experiences there that made him the man he is today.
Dastrian is a scholar who specializes in the study of the Aedra and Daedra. He is religiously unbound, demonstrating an appreciation for the power and philosophies of all gods. However, to place himself in a position from which he may most easily pursue his research, he has fallen into favor with each god, performing tasks that would harbor their approval. As such, Dastrian may be seen entering a church or holy place to pray, not as a display of devotion to any particular deity, but as a gesture of good will to the god worshipped there. Dastrian is an Astralite, a member of an ancient sect of scholars centralized on the study of the stars and their relations to the deities. Astralites are required to be fluent in the ways of magical combat, as the volatile nature of their research will attest to. In addition to the arcane arts, it is customary for an Astralite to master one other non-magic combat solution. While combat and study are strictly regulated, an Astralite is not morally bound; he is free to pursue either good or evil. However, allegience to one or the other is required in order to create balance between the power of the Astralites. Dastrian is completely aligned with the power of good, appreciating the natural and the righteous, and outwardly influencing the world with his benevolent deeds. And while he, like any other focused scholar, has selected a particular subject in which to specialize, he is still an avid learner and seeker of knowledge in all its forms, meaning that his studies are not restricted only to the study of the gods. In fact, Dastrian's favorite passtime is reading through his massive collection of texts, the subjects of which are vast and varied, and definitely not limited only to the Aedra and the Daedra. He also adds to his collection with books that he himself has written.
Recently, Dastrian happened upon an Ayleid Ruin in the shape of a tower, aptly named the White Tower. Sensing the immense power that surrounded the place, he opted to investigate. After clearing the tower of its hostile inhabitants, Dastrian quickly unlocked the secrets of the mysterious White Tower and decided that it was the perfect place for him to call home. He spends large periods of time in contented seclusion, whether it is spent decorating his home, writing books, training, or even spending time away from the stress of his adventerous lifestyle.
- Dastrian is the Champion of Cyrodiil, having foiled the plot of radical heretic Mankar Camoran.
- Dastrian was elected the Archmage of the Mages Guild after defeating Mannimarco, King of Worms upon his return to the land.
- Dastrian is the Grand Champion of the Imperial Arena.
- Dastrian has become the reigning Madgod in the realm of the Daedric Prince Sheogorath, the Shivering Isles.
- Dastrian has acquired Daedric Artifacts from each of the Daedric Princes.
- Dastrian has made a pilgrimage to the wayshrines of each Aedra.
- Dastrian has acquired the powers from each of the Heaven Stones, as well as the power from the Ritual Birthsign Stone.
- Dastrian has collected nearly every book in Cyrodiil.
Elder Scrolls Title: Oblivion
Birthsign: The Warrior
Class: Broken Crusader (custom Combat class)
Favored Attributes: Strength, Endurance
Major Skills: Alteration, Armorer, Blade, Block, Heavy Armor, Light Armor, Speechcraft
Description: Salamel is a warrior with an unforgettable past and an uncertain future. He was born into a middle-class family in the Imperial City, and his father left his mother when he was two, leaving her to provide support for both his older brother and himself. Salamel grew up on the streets, and his personality and ideals were shaped by that which presented itself around him. The only constant influences in his life were those provided by his family, espcially his brother, Roda. Throughout Salamel's early life, he and his brother were almost inseparable, despite their age difference (Roda was three years older than Salamel). Salamel's childhood was not unusual, and it could be said that he turned out well enough for the situation in which he was placed. However, his older brother was not as fortunate. During his adolescence, Roda became involved with a prostitution ring associated with a gang. Sensing his brother's fall from grace, Salamel attempted to intervene in Roda's spiral. Viewing his brother's interference as a sign of hostility, Roda became enraged. He unsuccessfully attacked Salamel, and fled the city soon afterwards. He has not been seen since. Feeling at fault for his brother's disappearance, Salamel became depressed and inconsolable. He began to drink heavily at the young age of 17, and would often return home slovenly and intoxicated. One night, after a long session of binge drinking (which, unfortunately, was becoming more and more routine), Salamel was accosted by a frantic beggar who was the victim of a thief. In his drunken state, Salamel became confused and fearful at the sudden intrusion, and he was not coherent enough to understand the real reason that the beggar had stopped him. Thinking that the beggar was attempting to attack him, Salamel drew his sword and slew the poor man. Soon after, he was apprehended by the guards and sentenced to life in the Imperial Prison. It was during the two years he spent in prison that the darkness in Salamel manifested itself; he was fostering hatred, not only for himself, but for family, friends, and even the innocent beggar that he had mistakenly slain. Consumed with self-pity and regret, it seemed that all was lost for the poor young man. However, he was given new life in the form of a task presented to him. The Emperor Uriel Septim himself, in an attempt to flee from assassins, beseeched Salamel and gave him a quest that would decide the fate of their world. Feeling the urgency within the Emperor's voice, Salamel accepted the task. His path was long and difficult, but Salamel was more than willing to walk it, viewing his new responsibility as a means of atonement for the mistakes of his past. Against all odds, Salamel accomplished his mission and sealed the denizens of Mehrunes Dagon within the realm of Oblivion. Satisfied with his new life and his new reputation, he was given another special mission; however, this quest would come from the Nine Divines themselves. One night, Salamel was granted an epiphany in the form of a dream in which the combined voice of the Aedra elected him an agent of the gods, or Crusader. To cement his position, Salamel was entrusted with the task of retrieving the armor of the last great Paladin, Vralen Averos. This enchanted armor, called Heaven's Wrath, was the holy protector of its wearer, bearing the defenses of fortified metal and divinity. His quest was not an easy one, but Salamel completed it like those before, showing tremendous courage and ability in the face of his opposition. With his new occupation, it seemed that the future of the young Crusader was bright and eventful. However, he would soon happen upon a pair of mystical swords that would change his life yet again. It is not clear whether or not the change was for the better. One morning, while riding through the Great Forest, Salamel happened upon an Ayleid Ruin. At first, he did not stop; after all, the discovery of an ancient ruin was far from abnormal. However, as he rode closer, a power drew him towards the entrance. Salamel decided that power great enough to affect the mind of a Crusader could not be left unchecked, so he dismounted and headed into the ruin. After vanquishing the traditional foes, Salamel arrived in a large chamber nestled deep within the ruins. As he ascended the stairs to the threshold of the room, he saw a glint resting atop a stone pedastal. Stepping forward, he realized that the shine on the stone was a pair of shortswords; one was straight and gold with a white trim, and the other was curved and black, also with a white trim. Both swords were inscribed with runes that stretched the length of their blades. Taking the swords in his hand, Salamel could feel that they were the source of the power that drew him into the ruin. However, their individual power was not equal; the golden sword, Aduro, filled his heart with the power of light, whereas the black sword, Caliga, defiled his heart with the power of darkness. Unsure of what to do with the powerful blades, Salamel returned to his castle to ask for aid from the Divines. He prayed, and was answered by the same voice that had visited him in his first dream. "The swords you possess were sealed away within that ruin. It seems that seal has been broken. The golden blade, Aduro, is the embodiment of good, and its counterpart, Caliga, is the embodiment of evil. To remain within our favor, you must return to the ruin at once. Place the swords upon the altar on which you found them, and we will grant you the power of the seal so that you may replace what has been lost." Salamel obeyed the command of the Divines and returned to the chamber where he found Aduro and Caliga. However, when the time came to place the swords on the stone, he hesitated. There was no doubting the swords' power; he could feel it coursing through him as he held them, becoming as much a part of him as his arms or legs. Aduro and Caliga were taking effect. His mentality, whether or not he knew it, was becoming two separate entities, and while his mind as a whole remained the same, his perceptions of the world around him began to change. Sometimes, it was filled with light, and the benevolence of the natural world. Other times, it was covered in darkness, burning with corruption. Realizing their potential, Salamel sheathed the swords and fled the ruin. After his exit, he was once again visited by the voice of the Nine Divines. "You have defiled your class by forsaking the task presented to you by the benevolent divines. You are no longer the agent of the gods, and are hereby branded the Divided, as you are he who wields the manipulators of sanity." Salamel continues to live in his castle estate, uncertain of what the future will bring. His blades have caused him instability. When Aduro is most influential, he is a good and wonderful leader, a friend to humanoid and animal alike. When Caliga has strengthened her grasp, he is a dark and brooding madman, festering in hate and evil power. While he always remains one person, and has no capacity for dual personalities, Aduro and Caliga are respectively responsible for his thoughts and perceptions at any point in time.
There was a time when SubtleCynicism owned Oblivion for the Xbox 360. This was a very happy time; a time of exploration, and prosperity. One day, while SubtleCynicism was attempting to do research for the UESP, he stupidly saved over the file of his main character. After punching himself in the stomach, he managed to acquire a PC copy of Oblivion. Rejoice, as he was able to, using a combination of the console, construction set, and old-fashioned intuition, recreate his file from scratch. He now plays blissfully on his new platform, bringing up numbers and values at will and basking in the glory that is his graphics.
But you ask, "Why would SubtleCynicism purchase the Xbox 360 version in the first place if his PC was such an animal?" The answer, dear reader, lies in the simple fact that his computer, at the time of original release date, would pale in comparison to his current machine. Here are the CPU, RAM, and GPU:
AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core 4600+
GeForce 8800 GTX 768mb
Note that, while SubtleCynicism is wholly supportive of the advent of DirectX 10 (and is capable of the management of such technology), he is unwilling to undertake the tangled web of Windows Vista at this time. It is obvious, of course, that he will eventually purchase Vista; however, he says that "now is not yet the time".