This article is about the in-game menu. For a guide, see First Time Players.
This article lists all tips from the in-game Help menu.
Welcome to The Elder Scrolls: Blades!
Your town, burnt to the ground, serves as your main hub. Only you can rebuild it to its former glory.
The townsfolk there have dangerous but vital quests for you, indicated by exclamation points above their heads. Quests move the Blades story along and provide great rewards, so always keep an eye out for them.
Jobs offer even more opportunities to help townsfolk and earn rewards. Your quests and jobs are all listed in the Quests Menu.
You can also dare to brave the Abyss, which challenges you to go as deep as possible. The farther you go, the greater the loot!
The Arena is where you go to test your skills against other players, fighting in real-time battles for fame and fortune.
All of Blades' game modes provide chests, gold, materials, and more. The Lumber, Limestone, and Copper you earn can be used to rebuild your town and upgrade your shops. Improving your town makes more quests available, and improving your shops lets you make the better items required to complete them.
Exploring the world of Blades is simple.
Tap on a location to move there automatically. If you can't reach it or stand on it, you'll still move as close to it as possible.
Swipe to turn and look around.
You can also move and look around with virtual joysticks by holding near the bottom corners of the screen. Move with the left joystick and look around with the right.
By default, virtual joysticks are only enabled in landscape mode. In the Settings, you can enable them in portrait mode, disable them in all modes, or only disable the right joystick. You can also disable tap-to-move to rely solely on the joysticks.
All interactions are done by tapping.
In town, icons show who or what you can interact with, like townsfolk, buildings, and decorations. Tap on the icons themselves to start a conversation, construct a building, and more.
You can also talk to townsfolk by tapping directly on them. This is necessary for merchants, as tapping on a merchant's icon takes you directly to their services.
On a quest, tap directly on glowing objects to interact with them. You can take chests, collect treasure, open doors, pull levers, eat food, harvest materials, and more.
Keep your eyes open for hidden triggers that reveal secret areas!
Combat starts automatically when you and an enemy are close to each other.
To attack, first hold on either side of the enemy. A red circle will appear and grow quickly. When it turns gold, release or swipe towards your foe.
Release or swipe when the circle is full to strike with a powerful critical hit.
After attacking from one direction, you can perform a combo attack by immediately attacking again from the other side of the screen. Combo attacks are faster and deal extra damage.
If the circle is gold but you no longer want to strike, you can swipe down to cancel your attack.
Swarming enemies like Skeevers and Spiders stay out of reach. You can only hit them with weapon attacks when they charge in to attack.
Blocking attacks reduces, but does not negate, the damage you receive.
To block, hold the shield icon. At first, for a short time, you will block high, then lower your shield to block low. When a weapon attack is blocked high, the attacker gets stunned. Blocking high also protects you more effectively, so try not to block attacks too early, in order to block them high instead of low.
If you don't have a shield, you can block with your weapon. Weapons can also block high and stun your enemy, but they don't protect as well as a shield.
Broken shields and weapons can still be used for blocking, but they offer little protection and cannot stun the attacker.
Blocking elemental attacks, like a Fireball spell, is not as effective as blocking physical ones, but the Elemental Protection perk can improve this.
Level & Attributes
Your level determines how strong you are, what items you can equip, and what skills you can learn. Your total XP determines your level.
Earn XP by defeating enemies, exploring the Abyss, completing quests, and more. When you have enough XP to reach the next level, a level up icon will appear. Tap it to increase your level.
At each level up, up to level 50, your maximum Health increases by 10, you earn Skill Points, and you must choose to increase either your maximum Magicka or Stamina by 10.
Your Health attribute represents how much damage you can suffer before dying.
Skill Points are used on the Skills Menu to learn and upgrade skills: spells, abilities, and perks.
Magicka and Stamina are attributes used for casting spells and performing abilities, respectively. Increase one or the other to best support the skills you like to use.
A Reset button on the Skills Menu lets you spend Gems to get back all spent Skill Points and rebalance your Magicka and Stamina upgrades.
- Main Article: Skills
Spells, abilities, and perks are all known as skills. To learn a skill, you must meet its minimum required level, know at least one of its prerequisite skills, if any, and spend its Skill Point cost.
Spells provide a variety of different magical effects. Casting a spell costs Magicka.
Abilities are special combat maneuvers. Performing an ability costs Stamina. You do not get stunned when your ability attack is blocked high.
Perks provide passive, always active bonuses.
New skills starts at rank 1, and can be upgraded to higher, more powerful ranks by spending more Skill Points. Higher ranks have their own minimum required levels. Higher spell and ability ranks cost more Magicka and Stamina, respectively.
Spells and abilities must be equipped to make them available in combat, where equipped skills appear as icons above your Magicka and Stamina. You can equip up to three spells and three abilities at once.
Equipped spells and abilities start combat off on cooldown. They cannot be used immediately. Once cooldown is over, tap on a skill's icon to use it. It will then go back on cooldown.
You can change your equipped spells and abilities during combat. Tap your Magicka and Stamina bars to quickly access your spells and abilities, respectively.
- Main Article: Chests
Chests contain everything you need to rebuild your town, improve your equipment, and survive the dangers you face. They're your best source of Uncommon and Rare materials like Copper, Soul Gems, and jewels.
Chests can be found during quests and jobs, and earned in all game modes.
Town & Shops
- Main Article: Town
Your town's level, determined by its total Prestige, represents how much you have restored it to its former glory.
Earn Prestige for your town by building houses and shops, upgrading those buildings, and crafting decorations. Your town will level up when you get enough Prestige to reach the next level.
There are four different shops to build: the Smithy, the Alchemy Laboratory, the Workshop, and the Enchanter's Tower. The latter three are unlocked as your town level increases. You can build each shop multiple times.
Shops can only be upgraded to the same level as your town. Higher level shops provide better items and enchantments, so the higher your town level, the better you can equip yourself.
At first, all of your town's buildings and walls are in the Timber style. As your town gains levels, two additional styles, Stone and Castle, will be unlocked. Any building or wall can be customized to any of your unlocked styles.
- Main Article: Weapons
Weapons can be forged or bought at the Smithy, as well as found in chests.
Daggers, hand axes, and light hammers are light weapons. They deal low damage and have the weakest critical hits, but attack very quickly, with great combo attacks. They can only be used one-handed, so a shield in the other hand is recommended.
Longsword, war axes, and maces are versatile weapons. They can be used one-handed, to carry a shield, or two-handed, to deal extra damage.
Greatswords, battleaxes, and warhammers are heavy weapons. They attack slowly and get little benefit from combo attacks, but deal the most damage, with devastating critical hits. They must be used two-handed.
A weapon's Block Rating shows how effective it is at blocking attacks. Heavy weapons have the highest Block Ratings, followed by versatile and light weapons.
There are three physical damage types. Daggers and swords deal slashing damage. Axes deal cleaving damage. Hammers and maces deal bashing damage.
There are four elemental damage types, dealt mainly by spells and enchantments: fire, frost, shock, and poison.
Armor reduces the damage you receive from physical damage types, but has no effect against elemental damage types.
Blocking protects against all damage types, but reduces physical damage types more effectively.
Resistances and weaknesses can apply to any damage type. A resistance reduces the damage received from a given damage type, while a weakness increases it.
Most enemies are resistant to and weak against certain physical and elemental damage types. Experiment with different weapons and effects to discover what works best against each enemy.
Armor & Shields
- Main Article: Armor
Armor and shields can be forged or bought at the Smithy, as well as found in chests.
A full armor set comes in the form of four separate pieces: armor, helmet, gauntlets, and boots. A piece's Armor Rating is a measure of how well it protects, but only against physical damage. Armor Rating has no effect on elemental damage.
You can carry a shield while wielding a one-handed weapon. The higher a shield's Block Rating, the more effective it is, but only while actively blocking. A shield provides no protection otherwise. Block Rating reduces elemental damage, but not as well as physical damage.
Some armors and shields, like those made of hide and leather, provide less protection, but have special material bonuses, like faster regeneration or unparalleled defense against specific damage types.
- Main Article: Jewelry
Jewelry can be forged at the Smithy or bought at the Enchanter's Tower, as well as found in chests.
Rings and necklaces provide the wearer with bonus ranks to one or more specific skills. Rings give bonus ranks to spells and abilities, while necklaces have ranks for perks.
You must first learn a skill with Skill Points in order to benefit from any bonus ranks you have for it.
Jewelry comes in 6 different grades. As grade increases, so do the number of skills given bonus ranks, up to three, and the number of ranks provided. Every grade after the first adds a different prefix to the item's name: sparkling, gleaming, radiant, dazzling, and resplendent.
Jewelry of lower value only provides bonus ranks to skills with a low minimum required level, those near the bottom of their respective skill trees. More valuable jewelry can give bonus ranks to skills higher up the skill trees, as well as give extra bonus ranks to the skills below them.
Potions & Poisons
Potions and poisons can be brewed or bought at the Alchemy Laboratory, as well as found in chests.
When you use a potion, you drink it instantaneously. Restoration potions restore one of your attributes over a short time: Health, Magicka, or Stamina. Resistance potions temporarily increase one of your elemental resistances.
When you use a poison, you apply it to your current weapon. It is then delivered to an enemy the next time you land an unblocked hit. Only one poison can be applied to a weapon at a time. Each poison can be delivered three times. Applied poisons expire when you return to town, but not when you equip a different weapon.
Regeneration poisons reduce or halt the regeneration of one of the enemy's attributes. Weakness poisons temporarily make the enemy weak against an elemental damage type.
You can drink potions and use poisons during combat. Tap your Health bar to instantly open the Potions Menu.
Forging & Tempering
You can forge weapons, armor, shields, and jewelry at the Smithy, as well as temper all but jewelry.
The higher the Smithy's level, the better the items you can craft. Every level unlocks a new tier. Every tier includes two armor and shield sets, one that provides great all around protection and one that trades some defense for material bonuses. Inspect these items to see what their material bonuses are.
Tempering repairs an item and improves it in every way, including its durability and any material bonuses. Only items that can be crafted at a Smithy can be tempered there. There are 10 tempering levels, but it's the Advanced Tempering perk, not the Smithy's level, that determines what tempering levels are available.
You normally have access to four tempering levels. Each rank of Advanced Tempering, up to rank 3, provides two more tempering levels. Every level adds a different prefix to the item's name: fine, superior, remarkable, exquisite, magnificent, flawless, exemplary, sublime, majestic, and mythical.
The higher an item's tempering level, the less it costs to repair each point of lost durability.
- Main Article: Enchanting
You can enchant your weapons, armor, shields, and jewelry at the Enchanter's Tower.
Enchantments are permanent magical effects that apply as long as you use or wear the enchanted item. You decide which enchantment to apply to an item. Choose carefully, as an enchanted item cannot be enchanted again.
The higher the Enchanter's Tower's level, the more powerful the available enchantments. Your options also depend on the item. Shields, helmets, and gauntlets, for example, all have different enchantments to pick from.
And while most weapon enchantments are available to all weapons, light, versatile, and heavy weapons each have a unique combat enchantment only they can receive.
With luck, an enchanted item can come with up to two additional secondary enchantments. Possible secondary enchantments also depend on the item, as does the likelihood that they appear.
- Main Article: Guilds
Guilds are groups of up to 20 players that can chat and trade materials with each other, as well as visit each other's towns.
You can create a new guild for 50 Gems, or join an existing guild for free. Joining an "Apply Only" guild requires the approval of the guild's creator, or Grand Master, while joining an Open guild does not. The Grand Master also has the power to set the guild to Closed (to prevent new applicants) and to remove any members from the guild.
Guildmates can chat with each other, as well as ask for and donate materials. The higher the level of your shops, the better the materials you can request from the guild.
You can also visit a guildmate's town and buy from their merchants. They keep a separate inventory for each player that visits them, so buying from them will not affect your guildmate's game.
Your guild's overall score is determined by the trophies of all its members. A section of the Arena leaderboards ranks the world's top guilds by score and allows you to see your guild's global ranking.
- Main Article: Arena
Unlocked at level 5, the Arena game mode lets you fight other players in real time, with trophies and other rewards on the line. Matches have a best-of-three format: the first combatant to win two rounds wins the match.
Equipped items, spells, and abilities can be changed between rounds to surprise or adapt to opponents. A single potion or poison can be equipped and used per round, but it can be changed between rounds.
In the Arena, fighters benefit from tripled Health and improved blocking. High blocks can be held longer, refresh faster, and stun opponents for longer. Blocks are also more effective against elemental damage, and much more effective against physical damage.
Matches reward you with XP and gold whether you win or lose. You also earn a chest for every eight rounds won.
Trophies measure your progress up the ranks. They are rewarded for victories but taken away after losses. Every 500 trophies move you to a different arena in which to fight, with each arena being divided into tiers. Every new tier and arena you reach provides its own reward.
Generally, you cannot move back down to a previous tier or arena by losing trophies. Falling below 2500 trophies in the Imperial Arena, however, will return you to the highest tier of the Heroes Hall.
The Arena leaderboards list the world's top players, as well as indicate where your trophy count places you in the global rankings.
- Main Article: Abyss
The Abyss game mode, unlocked at level 4, challenges you to go as far as possible down an endless dungeon, earning XP and gold every time you descend to the next floor. Fight through floor after floor, until you die or quit, then try again.
Defeating enemies fills a reward meter. When it is full, you earn the displayed reward. It then resets and offers a new reward.
The farther you go, the more challenging enemies become and the more they fill the reward meter. Rewards also get better and better, up to Golden Chests and Soul Gems.
You start the Abyss at Floor 1, but subsequently can choose to start as far down as you have reached. A starting floor will be recommended depending on your level and your best equipment. Start there to ensure the enemies you encounter provide a fair challenge and good rewards.
If your recommended starting floor would normally be deeper than your depth record, enemies may at first be too easy and barely fill the reward meter, until you go deeper and catch up to the recommended starting floor.
Enemy difficulty depends not only on the current floor, but also the one you started on. For example, the enemies on Floor 25 will be much more challenging if you started on Floor 19, six floors above, than if you began on Floor 23, only two floors above.