The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind

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  • A list of differences between Morrowind and Oblivion is available here.
  • If you pick a lot of skills that get used often, and automatically you will level way fast, which isn't necessarily a good thing. (acrobatics, athletics, sneak)
  • Redguard is by far the best race with their weapon bonuses. Some may disagree, but I found magic other than alchemy and restoration pretty worthless. You are pretty much always better off just whacking stuff to death. On thing note however, some key spells you will need are Mark/Recall (for getting back to your cache when you are over burdened with loot) and soul trap.
  • In place of spells, always carry potions (healing, etc) that produce the desired effect since they can be used during a pause in the middle of the battle. Alchemy is an excellent way of getting potions cheaply.
  • Be sure to join the mages guild for the free teleports (or is it just cheaper?) and do a lot of side quests in between every main quest you do to level up and get better gear.
  • This is not Oblivion. You're going to die a lot, especially if you've built yourself as a pure mage. Don't worry: once you get some experience under your swamp-stained netch leather belt, you'll be just fine.
  • Morrowind has a still-active mod community which has done incredible things for the look and play of the game. You can tweak the game pretty much however you want, and I suggest hunting around for mods a bit before you play (specifically Better Bodies and Heads, it makes the game so much easier to look at).
  • This is not Oblivion, neither monsters nor loot scale to your level.
  • Don't bother with the Enchantment skill. Even with it maxed, you will get better results paying NPCs.
  • Save before entering unknown territory. There's a chance you'll get killed by monsters three times your level.
  • Explore every new ruin you find. There's usually some awesome treasure.
  • Leave the netches alone until you are told to. They look like scary monsters but are tame.

Exploits / quest specific / min-maxing

  • In the starting area there is a locked door leading to the towns warehouse. Full of goodys to steal that will either work well, or give you quite a bit of cash for a good start. Break into the warehouse and start going through things. You can reload your game and the containers will spawn different stuff. Also, just save outside the door before you try and break in, you can reload if the guard catches you.
  • Give back the ring, it'll give you nice influence over the local shopkeeper, you want him to like you as much as possible, then save.
  • Enchanted weapons are pretty powerful (especially with a paralyze enchantment or damage spell on hit) but a backup weapon is always a good idea. Buying stuff tends to be expensive, but typically it is decently easy to steal (save first) or get better stuff from wandering in the wilderness. Very powerful early game gear can be gotten by defeating Umbra (bring a couple scrolls of paralyze otherwise he is pretty hard) or simply by stealing the sword of white woe from one of the guard houses in Balmora (I forget which one - look it up)[Editor's note: it's in the Eastern Tower]
  • Magic is worthless in combat. Have some ability in restoration at least but avoid any idea that you should be a battlemage. The only way to make magic worthwhile in combat is to exploit the game and to me that doesn't seem like a good system. Carry around a ton of health potions and just hack and slash everything. Along the way you'll pick up what magic you will need no matter what kind of character you are. However it is much harder to start as a mage and realize that you really need to use a will get nowhere.
  • Get a paralyzing dagger as soon as possible. One can be found in/near Seyda Neen, look around, they're all over. Carry at least 2 with you at all times. Once you have this dagger, go to the Dren Plantation, north of Vivec. Go out into the fields and climb up the ladder into the little lookout shack. There is a Dunmer in there. Paralyze him and stab him in the face, then take the Daedric Daikatana he's carrying. Congratulations, you now have the most powerful melee weapon in the game, barring enchantments. You can now continue on the quest.
  • Ebony weapons hold the most charge. If you're going to enchant, find one and use that.
  • There is an Imp named Creeper in Ald'ruhn. He (along with 1 other merchant) has the best sell prices of any merchant in the game, so use him to sell your good stuff.
  • In the archipelago SW of Molag Mar there is a certain island that's covered with mudcrabs. Be very careful out here and find the one crab that doesn't attack you on sight. Walk up to it and talk to it. You've now found the OTHER merchant that has the best selling prices in the game.
  • Go out to the Shrine of Azura on the SE tip of the island, and click on the statue. Do that quest to get the largest Soul Gem in the game, which can hold any soul you will ever find. It's also reusable. Once you get it, sell all your other soul gems to Creeper.
  • After you generate your character, turn to the right (assuming you're facing the Census and Excise guy who you were talking to) and head to the shelves. There is a limeware platter on that shelf that's worth 650 drakes. Pick it up. The Imperial Legionnaire in the room will be alerted to your thievery, so drop the platter on the ground before he talks to you. He'll let you off the hook "just this one time," so pick the platter back up and then head into the next room. Pick up the dagger and all the expensive stuff in the room. This includes all the tableware on the table, as well as the plates and bottles of Sujamma(?) on the shelf behind the table. Continue through to the next building and talk to Sellus Gravius. Get the Ring of Healing in the barrel outside. Give Fargoth his ring. Go to Arrile's Tradehouse and sell off all that stuff you nicked. He'll give you a good deal because his disposition will be super high after you help Fargoth. Go to the second floor of Arrile's Tradehouse. Talk to Hrikksar Flat-Foot. He'll give you a quest to take Fargoth's stuff. Do the quest, but don't talk to Hrikksar when you've completed it. You now have a ton of money to spend on penny whistles and moon-pie. Enjoy the rest of the beginning of the game with a small fortune in your pocket.
  • Another way to make money: Ajira in the Balmora Mages Guild will give you a quest to replace Galbedir's lesser soulgem with a fake one. When you get to Galbedir's desk, take all the soulgems and the limeware platter sitting on top of the desk as well. Sell them off to Creeper in Caldera over time for a few installments of 5,000 drakes. Exit the town, and head north along the coast line. Before long you'll find a dead body. Search it, take everything it has, and go back to the guy who creates your character class. He'll offer you a reward if you kill the murderer so go to one of the little shacks and talk to the occupant about the murder. One of them will say he did it so kill him and return. Say hello to an extra $500! Get the ring and return it to the woman who lives in the lighthouse for two free healing potions.
  • If you have Tribunal installed, rest just outside of town until an assasin attacks you. Kill him (or run to some guards and let them do the dirty work) and take the assasin's gear. It's worth about a grand or so.
  • Speaking of magery, listen well: Sanctuary is broken and you're going to want to use it. It gives a chance to negate a hit proportional to the magnitude of the spell, which means, yup, if the magnitude is 100, you cannot be hurt, except if things reflect your spell. Lots of things like to do this. Dremora, for example, and atronachs, and pretty much anything that looks as if it has been summoned from some hideous otherworld. This is where you practice your Conjuration or melee skills.
  • Don't give money to the beggar in Tribunal. Nothing you can do will make him like you. No matter what you do he will eventually try to fight you. You should stay far, far away until you're a super strong badass.