We’re marching onwards with our weekly screenshot dissection series. Each week I navigate through the wilderness of ESO video footage to snag the most interesting single screen capture I can find, breaking it down to provoke community discussion! This week features some images of what appears to be a Daedric ritual site, deep within the shrouded depths of Black Marsh. Read on, if you dare, to examine the diabolical scene which unfolds.
This screenshot suffers from a lack of illumination, but the dusky twilight combined with the swamp mists which surround this ancient site provoke a moody atmosphere which seems fitting. The eroded stone archway reveals that this was a site of some importance to the indigenous peoples of the swamp. The stonework does not immediately evoke the Aztec or Mayan imagery which has been associated with Argonian masonry in several other screenshots, but the grove trees, ferns, and mushrooms which border the path seem a strong indication that Black Marsh is our setting. Some fallen stones to either side of the archway do appear to have spiraled patterns engraved upon their faces.
This ritual site, whatever it’s original purpose, has been seized by Daedra. These horned humanoids look reminiscent in body type of the Dremora that were prevalent throughout Oblivion. A key difference is that this particular brand of Daedra seems to be much fairer of skin than the dark-hued Dremora. The demons guard the path in packs of three. Behind the first pack on the left, a chest awaits, presumably brimming with loot for a daring adventurer to claim. Each of the warriors bear wicked looking longswords, jagged blades handing at their hips.
In the background, a curved stone altar sits in front of a picturesque waterfall. In front of the altar, a small humanoid figure kneels prostrate, engrossed in some magic ritual. A faint orange glow emanates from the altar, perhaps the beginnings of a spell taking hold. It appears that a second figure stands guard just behind and to the right, apparently wearing golden armor. Given the strong Daedric presence here, could this be a golden saint?
Take a closer look at this dusky scene by checking out the full resolution screenshot, and let us know what you think about this landscape in the comment section below. Would you be excited to explore this area? What do you think the Daedra are up to? Think I’m totally crazy and my description of the scene is outright wrong? Let me know, I can take it!