Every Elder Scrolls game to date has taken place on one continent: Tamriel. The games explore so little beyond that land mass' shores that many fans assume Tamriel to be the name for the entire world of Nirn. The Elder Scrolls 6 needs to break from tradition and take players to another continent.
The Elder Scrolls 6 faces some unique challenges. With Skyrim approaching its 10th anniversary and likely to hit its 15th before The Elder Scrolls 6 releases, the game will face gargantuan expectations. With that in mind, Tamriel may no longer be the best setting for the next Elder Scrolls game.
Tamriel has been the setting of every Elder Scrolls game so far, but as a setting, it now faces some problems it didn't when Skyrim released. Although earlier Elder Scrolls games has taken players to each province in the land, the realization of the continent was hugely limited by the technology of the time. Morrowind, Oblivion and Skyrim brought their worlds to life in a way that simply wasn't possible when the first game released, making Vvardenfell, Cyrodiil and Skyrim worth revisiting in the more recent games.
The lack of recent direct depictions of these provinces left many of the areas of Tamriel which hadn't been seen since Arena cloaked in mystery. Skyrim players can hear tell of the great Hist trees of Black Marsh, or the walking cities of Valenwood. Many of the areas beyond Skyrim seem genuinely alien, with races like the Argonians and the Khajiit giving only a small glimpse into some of the mysteries waiting to be uncovered elsewhere on the continent.
The Elder Scrolls Online rendered parts of every province in Tamriel. ESO didn't render Tamriel as a single seamless world, instead opting to explore pockets of different provinces. Nonetheless, Elder Scrolls fans got a taste of the entire continent. While The Elder Scrolls Online has a huge map that dwarfs the last three games in size, it also made the world feel much smaller by revealing so much of Tamriel.
If the franchise is going to make players feel like they're entering into a truly unexplored world, its best bet is leaving Tamriel behind. The world itself has always been the main aspect of The Elder Scrolls games, which are known for their open world rather than the character-driven narratives found in RPG series like Mass Effect. While the next game could return to a previously-seen province of Tamriel, it should not do so if it wants fans to be struck with the same sense of mystery they felt seeing Tamriel's provinces for the first time since Arena.
There area few places that The Elder Scrolls 6 could go if it leaves Tamriel behind. Akavir is a large continent to the east of Tamriel, and there are a few races which have been revealed to live there. The Tsaesci are a supposedly snake-like race that has yet to appear directly in-game. In some sources, it is implied that they may simply be a race of men from Akavir.
Akavir is also known to include a nation called Kamal, which is said to be inhabited by a race of snow demons. The Tang Mo are described as a monkey-like Beastfolk race. The Tang Mo have an alliance with the Ka Po'Tun, a tiger-like Beastfolk race ruled over by the divine Tosh Raka, also known as the Tiger-Dragon. Once again, however, unambiguous physical descriptions are hard to find, and it's possible that this is a misunderstanding on the part of writers in Tamriel. In any case, it gives Bethesda a lot of flexibility if Akavir ends up being the setting of the next game
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