The Dark Brotherhood is the (un)official Assassin's Guild of Tamriel, and one of several joinable factions.
The Dark Brotherhood is a mysterious organization, often hired to carry out assassinations. Its members have a reputation as maniacs and Daedra worshippers. This is not altogether false; in fact, some describe the Brotherhood as a religious group of sorts devoted to their patron, the Daedra Prince Mephala, and headed by a mysterious figure known only as The Night Mother.
The Brotherhood has been in existence for thousands of years, and in that time, most kingdoms have declared it to be an illegal organization. But it's one thing to make a declaration...
For historical information about the Dark Brotherhood, see the lore page.
Dark Brotherhood Overview
To join the Dark Brotherhood, you must kill at least three innocent citizens or fifteen town guards. This operates on a "point system" where citizens are worth 5 points and guards are worth 1, such that you may choose to kill one citizen and ten guards, or two citizens and five guards, etc. After killing enough people, you will receive a letter offering instructions for joining the organization.
The Dark Brotherhood's quests are usually standard assassinations, such as the execution of freelance assassins (and their employers) or the execution of former members of the Brotherhood who failed their tasks.
|Allied with the Dark Brotherhood
Your guild rank is determined by a combination of your reputation with the Dark Brotherhood and your two highest skills associated with the guild:
The following skills are used to determine guild rank:
Advancing in rank within the Dark Brotherhood affords the following advantages:
|May bribe the judge. Chance is (Rank + 1) ÷ 20 when accused of murder
|An undiscovered dungeon is revealed on your map
|Access to Potion Seller
|Access to Potion Maker
|Access to Soul Gem Merchant
|Access to Spymaster
As you advance through the ranks, your will be lauded for your accomplishments.
- "It would appear that the Dark Brotherhood was wise in recruiting such of you. Our confidence in you has grown, and it is only right to give you an increase in rank within the Brotherhood. Consider yourself starting today a full-fledged Journeyman. Our chemists have been instructed that you are permitted to buy potions and poisons from their wares, so you needn't visit the Mages Guild any longer. I would also like to give you the location of another graveyard you ought really to be acquainted, random dungeon. Here it is, on your map. Once again, my congratulations, Journeyman."
- "So far, you have proven yourself to be more than a common thug, Player First Name. We have decided to promote you within the Dark Brotherhood. Beginning today your rank is Slayer. Now, in addition to the regular training we provide, you have access to our cauldron. There are a number of very clever poisons that have come from that tub. Finally, let me give you the location of another graveyard you may find interesting, random dungeon. I'll mark it on your map. Congratulations, Slayer. So far, so bad."
- "I think it's about time you received an increase in rank to match your value to the Dark Brotherhood. Others agree with me, so you may now assume the illustrious mantle of Punisher of the Dark Brotherhood. As a Punisher, you are permitted to deal in soulgems with our soul procurer. It's a nice method to add more profit to punishment -- the souls of your victims can fetch a decent price among those who want a spirit to bind in enchantment rites. Of course, you can buy soulgems from the procurer as well as sell them. I also wanted to show you a new graveyard in region, random dungeon. I think you will find it very interesting indeed, Punisher."
- "Player First Name, you have a callous disregard for human life, a disgusting nonchalance about accepting gold for murder. We couldn't be more delighted with you. The Brotherhood has chosen to once again promote you in our ranks. You are now Assassin player name. It is more than a title, though. It means that you can now speak to our Spymaster, the character who keeps us informed about the newest, most important happenings in the Iliac Bay region. I can give you a little rumor myself. There's a cemetery called random dungeon, with the most delightful treasures and surprises. I know you'll love it. Here, I'll mark it on your map, Player First Name. Or I should say, Assassin Player First Name."
The people of the Iliac Bay may discuss the Dark Brotherhood if asked:
- "The Dark Brotherhood is a very mysterious organization, often hired as assassins by the more pragmatic rulers. They have a reputation as maniacs and daedra worshippers, but they must be doing something right. They've been around for thousands of years."
- "A bunch of assassins posing as a religious order. They're more or less the official Assassin's Guild of Tamriel. Most kingdoms have declared them to be an illegal organization, but it's one thing to make a declaration ..."
- "They're sorta a religious group, but not like a temple. Imagine a bunch of priests with knives and blood on the mind."
The Dark Mixers are the Brothers who offer potion making services within the Dark Brotherhood. They allow all members of Slayer rank or higher to make their own potions, provided they have the required ingredients.
Mixers can be found on the first floor and their services are free.
Venom Masters are the potion sellers of the Dark Brotherhood. They sell a random assortment of potions to all members of Journeyman rank or higher. The cost of these potions is influenced by your reputation with the Venom Masters. They can be found on the first floor.
The Dark Slayers are the guild Brothers who offer contracts (quests) to guild members. Usually, the contracts these individuals provide will not have any particular reward attached; the profit must come from selling treasure found in dungeons. They can be found on the second floor.
The Dark Binders sell soul gems to all members of Punisher rank or higher. Occasionally, you may be lucky enough to find filled soul gems available for purchase. As with other factions, your reputation with the Dark Binders will affect the price of their wares. They can be found on the second floor.
The Dark Plotters are the Spymasters of the Dark Brotherhood, who provide credible information and rumors. These services are free, and available to any member with a rank of Assassin or higher. They can be found on the second floor.
Dark Trainers are the Brothers who offer training services in any skill associated with the Brotherhood. They can be found on the first floor.
The cost of training services is dependent on your character level, 100 gold per level to be precise. As with all skill training, Dark Trainers can only train a skill up to a maximum of 50%. Because the cost of a training session depends entirely on your character level, your reputation with the Dark Trainers will not affect the price of their services.
Dark Trainers offer training in the following skills:
- Critical Strike
- Short Blade
|General Quests and Information
|Quests for non-members
|The Acceptance Test
|Become a member of the Dark Brotherhood.
|The acceptance test for the Dark Brotherhood.
|Not in Guild
|Quests for members
|A Renegade Member
|There is a traitor in the Brotherhood. You will perform the necessary accounting on this liability, will you not?
|Execute a former member of the Dark Brotherhood.
|As you know, (player's guild rank), there is no room for failure in the Dark Brotherhood. Brothers who fail us...
|Execute a former member who tried to escape from the Brotherhood's retribution.
|There is another assassination group budding in (region), which must be crushed before it can bloom. ...
|Execute a freelancing assassin and his employer.
|A Renegade Mage
|The Mages Guild has come to us for a bit of messy business that's too gross and nasty for them to deal with. ...
We have the Mages Guild for a client again. Seems that one of their bugs has been sniffing too much bat gut ...
|Execute a renegade mage on behalf of the Mages Guild.
|A Fateful Song
|Here's a rather amusing accounting that may appeal to your morbid sense of humor. ...
|Execute a bard who composed a scandalous song about a local noble.
|Rank 1 or higher
|The Brotherhood prides itself on always knowing where each Brother is at all times. ...
|Discover the whereabouts of a missing guild brother.
|Rank 1 or higher
|A Knight Without Honor
|Ah, here's something to appeal to the romantic in you, (player's first name): a caddish knight...
|Execute a knight who refused to protect a damsel.
|Rank 2 or higher
|Contract on a Mage
|I recognize your expression, (player's first name). You are growing arrogant, egotistical, and vain. ...
|Execute a member of the Mages Guild.
|Rank 3 or higher
|An Anonymous Job
|We have an anonymous job for you. It happens every now and then that...
|Perform an execution at a palace in the region.
|Rank 3 or higher
|Concerns of a Noble
|This little excursion is not for just anyone, but I feel ...
|Mediate the succession within a noble family in the most "classic" way.
|Rank 4 or higher
|Taking on the Thieves Guild
|We have an interesting job available (player's name). A high ranking member of the Thieves Guild. ...
|Kill a high-ranking member of the Thieves Guild.
|Rank 5 or higher
|This could be a tough one, even for you (player's first name). ...
|Execute a veteran of the War of Betony.
|Rank 6 or higher
Note: Dark Brotherhood quests are offered based on rank only, and not character level.
Guildhall Map Blocks
A guildhall of the Dark Brotherhood is always a two-level orange building, which is marked automatically on the town map once a member enters a town or city for the first time. This building can also be the quest location of many of the various quests that take place in the local town.
- Given the method used to join the Dark Brotherhood, you cannot join them again after you leave, for whatever reason (be it vampirism or being kicked out).
- When you first join the Brotherhood, your reputation with them may be in the negative. Because zero or any positive reputation are the required values for the lowest rank, this can result in premature expulsion if you turn in a quest while your reputation with them is negative. There are several ways of dealing with this problem:
- Completing quests successfully will raise your reputation with the Brotherhood by 5 points. Try to complete enough quests to get back into the positive range before being expelled.
- Even if your reputation is negative, you cannot be expelled unless you talk to members of the Brotherhood. Each month, a negative reputation will get one point closer to zero, at which point it is safe to talk to them again. Because there is no way of checking reputation with specific factions in-game, it may be helpful to use a reputation editor or a similar tool.
- Failing certain quests for other factions can also increase your standing with the Brotherhood, which can rectify the problem. For example, during the merchant escort quest, if the merchant is being pursued by the Brotherhood, turning him over to them will increase your standing with the Brotherhood significantly.
- Certain save game editors such as DFHack can be used to manually raise your reputation with the Brotherhood and its associated factions.
- The reputation cheat can be used to raise your reputation with the Brotherhood to a positive value. Keep in mind that this method will also raise your reputation with every other faction and guild.
- Due to errors in regional placement, if you accept a non-member quest from the Knights of the Hawk in Antiphyllos, the additional reputation gains from certain quests will be credited to the Dark Brotherhood and its associated factions.