Middas, 3:45pm, 3rd of Heartfire, 4E 201
Making my way back to the college with the news of where the Staff of Magnus is located I came across Anga’s Mill. Nothing noteworthy (although quests may be revealed here later) but I mention it because it’s something I enjoy about the game – the NPC’s going about their daily lives while I take care of mine.
Because there were only three of four residents of this location there was much more evidence of their lives going on, more than when I was in Riverwood.
But enough of the simple life – there are crazy things happening up at the college and I have to get back.
Once I made it back terrible news was waiting to greet me – the Arch-Mage is dead and Ancano warded himself off in the main chamber. With the fate of the college and perhaps the known world hanging in the balance, I head off for Labyrinthian to recover the famed Staff of Magnus.
On my way there I stop at Whiterun and spend the night at the Bannered Mare. It’s fun to start to feel familiar with certain places, and also to see them from (literally) different angles and I continue to travel the world.
On my way up the mountain I came across Hamvir’s Rest, a small graveyard to the northwest of Whiterun. Someone – I’m guessing Hamvir himself – popped out of the main sarcophagus and scared the crap out of me. He was easily defeated but I hope he wasn’t part of a quest that I’ll now miss out on later.
The ruin of Labyrinthian was fantastic; it’s a great example of how the designers “hide” huge areas just around the corner so it seems like it’s revealed every time you come back to it. It was a huge area and I knew underground would be just as large.
Expansive Yet Hidden
In the center of the ruins there was a Wooden Mask, but I’m not quite sure what it’s for. I have yet to put it on so we’ll see.
I entered Labyrinthian and was greeted by the Force ghosts of Savos Aren and his fellows students; they were discussing going further into the ruin. It seems like a bad idea, but they pushed ahead.
This was a cool concept well executed – the ghosts telling the story of what happened, how you see Savos pushing everyone else along to their eventual destruction (and his remorse at doing so), etc. It was well done.
The skeletal dragon in the huge chamber you come across was impressive and a fun battle. According to UESP this is the only skeletal dragon you come across, so I’m glad to have found and fought it.
Down in the ruin I learned my second dragon shout in the ancient language. Nice.
The battle with Morokei was crazy, with two of the lost student still trapped in this thrall. Believe me, even with the “God cheat” on I felt like I wasn’t sure if I was going to beat him.
But beat him I did, and with the staff and his mask secured it’s back to the college to confront Ancano.
The Mask of Morokei
Before I made it there one of Ancano’s lackeys, Estormo, came out of nowhere to fight me in the ruin. After that huge battle with the dragon priest he was more of an annoyance, but I dealt with him nonetheless.