We've been bringing you guides to Skyrim all week, whether you're interested in a Skyrim's vampire guide, werewolf guide, how to kill a dragon, guide to virtue, and more. We're closing out the week with a look at Skyrim's many and varied shrines to the Daedric Princes of Oblivion.
If you spend enough time wandering around the world of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, you're bound to come across shrines to the Daedric Princes of Oblivion. There's an Achievement/Trophy for finding 15 Daedric Artifacts, not to mention the rewards for these quests are some of the best items you can find. Some of the quests may involve some less than scrupulous actions, so if you're playing a moral/virtuous character it might be difficult to justify the quests. But for people playing a morally ambiguous character, these quests should be high on your side-quest radar.
Not on the Beaten Path
If you've decided to hunt down the Daedric Artifacts, be prepared to trek all over Skyrim. Seven of the Princes have shrines hidden around the land, the rest of the quests can be found in the various cities around Skyrim. One quest - Nocturnal's - is actually a part of the Thieves' Guild questline. Some of them can be picked up by talking to specific people, others, just by finding the shrines. And before you go thinking you'll start off with these quests, keep in mind that some have level requirements. In order to keep this as spoiler-free as possible, I'm just going to run through the locations of the initial quests, as the resulting rewards as well as any level requirements.
The Black Star - I found about this quest relatively early as a rumor from the tavern in Riverwood, but I recommend holding off on it a bit. There isn't a level requirement, but the ending of the quest can be a tough challenge for lower level characters. Azura's shrine itself is located south of Winterhold, on top of a mountain. Talk with the Dark Elf priestess Aranea to start the quest rolling. When you finish the quest you'll earn either the Azura's Star item or the Black Star, depending on the choices you make at the end.
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Boethiah's Calling - In order to begin this quest, you need to be at least level 30, so you've got plenty of time. You might find the Sacellum of Boethiah on your travels if you explore the mountains Southeast of Windhelm. If you do find it before level 30, like I did, it will be completely empty. Your reward for finishing it once you can is a full set of Ebony armor, which is enchanted with a muffle ability and a poison shroud effect too.
A Daedra's Best Friend - Again, there's a level requirement for this quest, but it's much lower - only level 10. But there isn't a shrine to Clavicus Vile in Skyrim, you find this quest by talking to Lod in Falkreath who will point you towards Barbas, who fans of Oblivion will recognize as Clavicus' pet. Much like Azura's Quest, you're faced with a choice at the end of this quest that will impact what your reward is. One option gets you the Rueful Axe, which does more damage to Daedra, while the other option rewards you with the Masque of Clavicus Vile which fortifies your speech skill.
Discerning the Transmundane - You'll need to be at least level 15 to begin the second part of this quest: The Blood Harvest. You can start Hermaeus Mora's Daedric quest either by speaking to Urag gro-Shub at the College of Winterhold or just finding the Septimus Signus's outpost on your own, and just like in Oblivion, he rewards you with the Oghma Infinium. When you read from this book, you pick one path - either the Path of Might, Shadow or Magic. Whichever path you select, you will gain a 5 point boost in all the skills under that path.
Ill Met By Moonlight - There isn't any level requirement for Hircine's quest, but there are specific benefits for werewolves that you might want to take advantage of. To begin this quest, you need to speak to Indara Caerlia in the Falkreath cemetery. Be aware that the Ring of Hircine that you get during the quest, which could be your reward depending on your choices, is cursed until you finish the quest. While it's cursed, there is a 10 percent chance you'll randomly transform into Beast Form if you're already a werewolf. If not, no worries. At the resolution of the quest, you either keep the uncursed ring, which lets you transform twice a day, or you get Savior's Hide, which has a 15% magic resistance and 50% poison resistance.
The Cursed Tribe - You need to be level 9 or higher for this quest. To start this quest, travel to Largashbur in the southwest portion of The Rift and speak with Atub to get the ball rolling. Once you've finished the tasks set forth, Malacath will reward you with Volendrung, which is a big Warhammer with an Absorb 50 points of Stamina enchantment.
Pieces of the Past - Again, you'll need to be level 20 to tackle this quest. For people who played Oblivion, the name Mehrunes Dagon should be very familiar, as is his dagger, Mehrunes' Razor. To start his quest, you just need to be in any city in Skyrim, after being level 20 - a courier will approach you with a note directing you to the museum in Dawnstar. In this quest, you'll be doing a number of different tasks - it's a long quest, but the payoff is worth it. If you don't end up failing Mehrunes, you're rewarded with the Razor, which retains the Daedric Banishing enchantment from Oblivion. It has a 1% chance on every swing to instantly kill.
The Whispering Door - Another level 20 quest, and you must have completed the quest Dragon Rising in the Main Storyline. You start this quest in Whiterun, directly from the Jarl. Once you've finished your dealings with Mephala, you're given an Ebony Blade that absorbs health. The enchantment starts fairly nondescript, but as you kill friends, it grows stronger - this is clearly a blade for the wicked.
The Break of Dawn - You'll need to be level 12 for Meridia's quest to trigger. I recommend doing this quest as soon as possible, you can find her shrine on Mount Kilkreath. The quest is standard fare, but the reward - Dawnbreaker, is a fantastic sword. It has a +10 Fire Damage enchantment, plus casts Bane of the Undead when you kill undead creatures. Trust me, it makes fighting large numbers of Draugr much, much easier.
The House of Horrors - To trigger this quest, you just need to visit Markarth, leave, then return again. Once you've begun the quest, you'll see you're dealing with Molag Bal. Oblivion fans will remember his quest well I'm sure. He once again rewards you with The Mace of Molag Bal, which has 25 magicka damage, 25 stamina damage and soul traps. Not a bad weapon if you ask me.
The Taste of Death - There isn't any prerequisite to this quest, just ask the innkeepers at the Silver-Blood Inn in Markarth for rumors to get started. I don't want to spoil the quest, but as your reward, you gain The Ring of Namira, as well as a potential follower. The Ring of Namira boosts your stamina as well as allowing you to feed on NPC corpses for 50 health and 50% health regen. Just be aware that feeding is considered a crime.
The Only Cure - To do Peryite's quest, you'll need to be level 10. Peryite's shrine lies in the Druadach Mountains above Karthwasten. Be ready to find a lot of the lovely Dwarven Automatons in this quest. As your reward, you get Spellbreaker, a shield that automatically casts a ward spell while blocking.
A Night to Remember - To do Sanguine's quest, you'll need to be level 14 or higher. To start, go get drunk. No seriously, go to the bar in any Hold city and you'll be challenged by Sam Guevenne to a drinking contest. Then you get to go on drunken shenanigans. Again, I'm serious. At the end, you'll get Sanguine's Rose, a unique staff that summons a Dremora for 60 seconds.
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The Mind of Madness - There's no level requirement for this quest, just head to Solitude and find Dervenin. He'll tell you about his master in the Blue Palace. Once you gain access to the wing he's in, you're transported to a different realm by none other than Sheogorath - the Prince of Madness. In classic Sheogorath fashion, the quest is more than meets the eye. When you've finished, you get to keep Wabbajack, which transforms whatever you hit into another random creature.
Waking Nightmare - There isn't a level requirement for Vaermina's quest, just go to Dawnstar and start talking around the town. There's a lot of dreams to go through, and when you get to the end, you have a choice. One choice lets you keep the Skull of Corruption, while the other lets you have access to a follower.
The only other Daedric quest is Nocturnal's, and that's part of the Thieves' Guild quest line. I don't want to spoil anything, but I will say that the reward is just the same as in Oblivion - the Skeleton Key, an unbreakable lockpick.