The Elder Scrolls

How do you view your player character? (Explain in the comments – especially if your opinion has nuance not captured by the two options. I’m curious to hear what you all have to say)

TheElderScrolls10 - How do you view your player character? (Explain in the comments - especially if your opinion has nuance not captured by the two options. I'm curious to hear what you all have to say)
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I definitely look at it like a multiverse, for several reasons, both META and in-universe ones.

META:

  1. To devalue 99% of player's playthroughs in favor of one canon protagonist is a slap of the face not only to the player, but to the bery soul of the series, the core of its philosophy of customization and free choice.

  2. The developers have always gone to great lengths to conceal the "real" protagonist and their choices. From the dragon break, to the fact daedric princes have no constant physical form (so Oblivion's protag becoming Sheogorath conceals his identity in his mortal life), to Babette and Cicero surviving the player's DB purge in Skyrim, to Imperial reinforcements beyond the avalanche ensuring long-term Imperial victory regardless of who wins Skyrim's civil war…

This shows the devs' intent clearly.

In-universe:

  1. The Elder Scrolls themselves. The scrolls an in-universe metaphor for quantum mechanics, if not full on proof of quantum mechanics in the TES universe (disclaimer, I'm by no means an expert on quantum mechanics. This is based on my understanding as a curious everyday person). Of the universe branching out as different possibilities manifest. Different people can read different things in the scrolls, after which a certain prophecy/course of events solidifies. This is like quantum particles before and after measurement. Likewise, the idea from quantum physics of the universe splitting in several timelines when several possibilities are available fits here perfectly. The scrolls are full of possibilities. When the scroll is read, the universe splits into timelines. In each timeline, the timeline's respective course of events solidifies. And each of us plays one of the timelines. This kind of stuff may very well be real irl, so in a univers like the TES one, that's even crqzier than ours, it's an easy sell. (META addition to this in-game subject: The game discs are similar to the Scrolls themselves. Each contains all the possobilities, but after the disc is read, the player solidifies one of the possoble timelines with their choices.)

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  2. The dragon breaks themselves are an example of different timelines interacting with each other, clashing with one another, each as real as the others.

  3. Kalpas. If we assume there are infinite, then even if there were no parallel timelines, there could eventually come about each of our playthroughs in a subsequent timeline. Just by the nature of infinity.

  4. I don't know where this is from, but I remember reading about one of the games or lorebooks describing an older game's protagonist as shifting between races and sexes, undetermined. Can someone point me to where this is from? I'd love to read it again. Or is that fanfic?

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