Growing up I was moderately interested in old things, and coming from the UK, was aware of the Viking raids and settlements that formed part of the tapestry of my town and country’s long history. So I’ve always rather liked Viking cultural tropes in the games that I play. A recent project at work on cultural heritage has brought these memories back to the fore.
Playing through the Rift zone, I’m surrounded again by various architectural or decorative nods to the Viking-inspiration behind the Nord culture. The buildings have boat-prow shapes and dragon’s heads carved up on them.
The helmets, naturally, have horns on them as well. My character has even amassed his own, rather fetching Nord look to his armour on his travels through the two Norn leveling areas (Eastmarch and the Rift).
The details that inspired this post aren’t simply visual either. I’ve written about the landscapes already; the mountains and hills covered in wild animals and brooding rock formations. But also the language of the quest texts adds to the mood – NPCs are skalds rather than bards and draugr instead of undead.
The very varied cultures and lore of the various areas certainly helps to keep my interest as I level in ESO. It’s one of the Elder Scrolls RPG setting’s strengths, that this MMORPG has so much rich lore to draw upon. Although I prefer to play non-human characters in MMORPGs, I still like this particular take on Viking-esque culture.