General:Uutak Mythos/FAQ

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Uutak Mythos Logo, featuring the Fourth Era symbol of Yneslea. (Drawn by Imperial Ascendance)
"In order to dislike something, you must come to know it first, for love and hatred are two sides of the same coin. Positive or negative caring is still caring nevertheless—a concept many people of this world fail to understand. This is why education is paramount to cultural and personal understanding, for without true and complete knowledge of a thing one cannot truly know that thing. People who pretend to dislike something just because they have failed to research it themselves or have heard tales from others are the most foolish of fools and should be pitied, for they lack the greatest of mortal powers bestowed upon us by the gods: common sense." — Boros Henharsh, Drill Master of the Serrated Pearls, Detachment of the "Cursed" 19th Legion

The Uutak Mythos prides itself on being a long-running (if not the longest running) community writing project associated with the Elder Scrolls franchise, and constantly seeks not only improvement of itself but also the improvement of the community as a whole. Despite this, however, it remains clear to the members of the project that several parts of the Elder Scrolls community remains oblivious or confused to the nature of the Mythos as an idea alongside several of its core goals and themes. A large amount of this confusion and active distaste stems from the project's earlier infancy (which contained less original concepts and a much more shoddier structure), which was met with uncertainty about the future of the project once the "NUutak Mythos" was announced in order to rectify and reboot the massive world-building of the original to make it not only standout more as its own creation, but also fix previous lore mistakes and abridgements that left some members of the community finding it lackluster at best and completely unconnected to the lore of the franchise at worst.

With several new articles, art, and writings having been done in a short-time frame in the midst of this reboot of the project, the members of the team have decided to more thoroughly provide a list of frequently asked questions pertaining to the Uutak Mythos (as well as simple and informative answers) to the general public of the Elder Scrolls community, in the hopes of providing a great deal of information for old members and new members alike. If these questions fail to help, or you have a more specific question you would like to ask or see added to this list, feel free to reach out to members of the project or make a note on the talk page of this article so that someone can get back to you in the future.

A Focused Anuic Questionnaire: Frequently Asked Questions concerning the Mythos[edit]

Welcome to our FAQ, newcomers and oldcomers alike! We hope that everything presented here in this document aids you in better understanding of the UM as a whole, and that you have a wonderful day.

What is the Uutak Mythos?[edit]

The Uutak Mythos is an Elder Scrolls world-building project originally founded by IceFireWarden and currently being led by himself, CaptainCarrot, and Drachkonig. It is centered around a sparsely developed location on the planet of Nirn: the island of Yneslea. It seeks to create an entirely new setting in the Elder Scrolls canon that is both unique and fun while also meshing seamlessly with existing lore (complete with new races, gods, historical events, artifacts, books, magic, and so much more).

To be more specific, what is this project about?[edit]

The project's foremost and primary goal is, of course, to continue the development of the island of Yneslea and its inhabitants through the use of unofficial supplements, writings, and artwork similar in vein to the codexes of the Warhammer and Warhammer 40,000 universes. Even if the UM remains a part of the fandom side of things, it is the hope of the project and the project's team that the lore created through it can help fill in the gaps that the series itself fails to do. While the Elder Scrolls series is incredibly comprehensive in some areas while also carrying deeper messages relating to individualism and philosophy, it also has been noted by members of the community to be moderately to severely lacking in others; topics relating to the rest of the world outside of Tamriel is especially bare minimum, and the Uutak Team believes that exploration of this outside world can lead to new magics, gods, heroes, races, and history that will lead to new topics and discussions (as the wait for the inevitable Elder Scrolls VI has left the community restless and slightly unmotivated/stale).

But in the project's past (re: pre-reboot), the Mythos helped serve as a way to acknowledge the ability of the fans to create, write, draw, and mod what they want and how they wanted to in regards to the immensely fun and intriguing lore and setting of the Elder Scrolls universe, to the point that even six years after its founding some members of the community still cite it as a huge source of inspiration and motivation in regards to their own efforts of creativity. Nowadays, NUutak happily embraces this facet of its existence, with its secondary goal being to serve as a 'pillar' of the fanfiction side of the community and what it can achieve through hard work and shared ideals. The project is even open to helping out other writing projects and working together with them (for example: the Cathnoquey Project of the Padomaic Merchants Guild shares a "canon/continuity" with Uutak now.)

Finally, the third goal of the Uutak Mythos is less focused due to its relative unimportance compared to the other goals, and is largely on the backburner for now. But in the future the Uutak Mythos would love to expand a little into the modding scene with small add-ons to Morrowind, Oblivion, and Skyrim (and maybe Arena and Daggerfall too, when science and God makes that possible). However, the project as a whole prefers to focus more on written and artistic endeavors after failed and semi-failed modding attempts in the past (not to mention with the reboot in process working on mods would utilize time the team members do not have).

How is this connected to TES lore?[edit]

As stated above, the Uutak Mythos is predominantly a world-building project that wishes to create and expand upon the lore of the Elder Scrolls. One of the ways the Uutak Team does this is by leaving more recent events in the newer games (Skyrim, ESO, Legends, and Blades) largely alone, while touching on the more obscure lore and areas found within in-universe games or earlier installments (Arena, Daggerfall, Battlespire, Travels, etc.) of the franchise. Because of the series' reliance (and sometimes over-reliance) on the narrative trope known as the Unreliable Narrator, it is hard to tell whether or not older information has retconned or forgotten about. Combining this with focusing the project on a very minor piece of background lore—a briefly mentioned island discovered during an antiquated war—gives the Uutak Team the leeway to create, develop, and reconstruct to the limits of their personal capability. And while it is admittedly difficult to decide whether or not an idea actually fits the strange setting that is TES (some popular questions that come to mind are: "is this technology too progressive?", "does this scale well with the rest of the world's size?", and "would [insert race] behave in this particular way or fashion?"), the Team believes it has done a rather decent job (especially with the new reboot) showing restraint and innovation with the Uutak Mythos and what it brings to the franchises' table.

Perhaps so decent of a job that Bethesda Softworks and Zenimax Online Studios haven't added any new lore snippets to the canon version of Yneslea! Of course, this might only be due to them not having any plans for the location in new content, but if they are avoiding this particular island in the Padomaic due to the existence of the project...well, we of the Uutak Team are quite appreciative of that.

Echmer? Hyu-Ket? What are the various races introduced in the Mythos?[edit]

The Races are a major part of the Uutak Mythos due to being how the audience is introduced to and interacts with the new settings developed within the world-building project. The races of the Mythos have also been the center of criticism and detraction amongst the greater Elder Scrolls community; several dislike the artistic direction taken with them, others disagree with certain aspects of their conceptual design, and others still just feel like they don't fit the overall narrative of the games. Although NUutak primarily exists in order to address the issues members of the community had with Oldtak, it unfortunately cannot accommodate everyone's requests (especially since some of the complaints would result in the complete eradication and/or rewriting of core Uutak themes). A major theme in particular concerning the races in the Uutak Mythos is that if you notice it, each one of them represents a different aspect of the lifestyle of a species (pretty clever, don't you think?).

In brief, the Echmer (evolution) are a race of Betmer who evolved from bats due to ancient Dwemer experimentation, and are known as a magnephobic (magic-fearing) people with a great love for puppetry, music, literature, and siege warfare. The Hyu-Ket (mutation) are a race of unusually tall and intelligent goblin-kin who came to Yneslea long ago and were transformed to be more insect-like by the consumption of native plants, and live semi-tribal existences in harmony with nature and the "world cocoon". The Broh-Kah (adaption) are four-armed, savage frog-people who no one really knows where they came from (it's even hinted that they might be from a completely different world altogether) and are infamous for their simplemindedness that's only rivalled by their knack for surviving impossible conditions. The Terenjoe (pseudoextinction) are deeply religious people who are best described as "merfolk", who have the physical traits of sharks and dolphins; they largely keep to themselves, and their clans are more akin to spiritual congregations with their leaders multitasking as missionaries to other races. And the Kitapoe (extinction) were a race of Akaviri-Men who died out during the Merethic, and had a pantheon of un-star deities that took on the appearance of several bugs (alongside a more monstrous and unknowable deity called the Tenebrous God).

The Dwemer? How are they involved in the Mythos?[edit]

The inclusion of the Deep-Folk within the project's lore has always been a source of conflict and confusion both inside and outside of Uutak's small community; it actually might be the biggest source, upon reflection in retrospect. In Oldtak at least, the way that the Noraken Clan—the group of Dwarves who decided to leave Tamriel and sail east (and therefore become one of the many driving forces in the Yneslean narrative)—was criticized as being out of character for how the Dwarves were traditionally described in the lore, and this was indeed true; the earlier project wrote the Noraken as being more personable instead of as the apathetic, alien, more machine-than-people race that both the official and unofficial lore painted them as and because of this one of the main goals of NUutak was to try to rectify this.

However, the Uutak Team noticed how incredibly hard it is to write about a race of people who...well, were described as not really being people, and deemed it slightly ridiculous and unrealistic that what amounted to basically an underground society of techno-savvy neckbeards had less emotions and character than the Hist, a literal race of alien trees. The fact that the Elder Scrolls Online also revealed that the Dwemer apparently liked pancakes and invented the Rubric's Cube helped the Team reach a compromise: the Noraken would still be described as apathetic, monstrous, and generally unlikeable, while also having a more distinct, interesting, and sympathetic cultural personality that made them feel more identifiable to readers. Thus did Clan Noraken become a group of Dwarves that rejected the idea of Numidium specifically due to the over-reliance on god-bits and technology, and decided to focus more on biological pursuits instead. And after numerous violations of the Hippocratic Oath, the Scientific Method, and the Laws of Physics the early Echmer—the Nemer—were created to initially serve as a slave race for them.

And then they disappeared. Whelp.

Can you get more specific about Yneslea?[edit]

In the lore of the franchise, Yneslea is an island mentioned in Disaster at Ionith and Brief History of the Empire, Volume 3 and nowhere else. Little is known about it except for the fact that it lies between the Starry Heart and the Dragon Land, and that its people once attempted to rebel against the Septim Empire shortly after they were annexed by Uriel V.

In the Uutak Mythos, Yneslea (or In'eslae) has been transformed from one island into an archipelago of over seventy that lies to the southeast of Tamriel (on average it takes around six to eight months to sail from Morrowind to the Yneslean Directorate, three to four months from the Yneslean Directorate to Pyandonea, and a month or so between the Directorate and Esroniet for distance comparisons). Because of the abundance of overland isles alongside the gigantic cavern system beneath the waves that connects the majority of them together, the homeland of the bat elves and the bug goblins is classified as a microcontinent in-universe and a major power.

Since determining the size of the continents is difficult due to not knowing how big Nirn itself is, the Uutak Team has gone with the simple idea that the Mundus/Nirn is bigger than what the games let on, and that Yneslea is only one of potentially several other locations unknown to the world at large until the Third Era.

After reading all of the above, I have to the Uutak Mythos canon?[edit]

The Mythos was initially conceptualized and created with the advice of Michael Kirkbride, a former writer and occasional contractor for Bethesda Softworks. Since its conception, it has been acknowledged by several prominent writers working for Zenimax media including Lawrence Schick, the former Loremaster of the Elder Scrolls Online. There have even been some possible Easter Eggs alluding to Uutak in official ESO publications, as well as a few words and concepts from it appearing in in-universe writings ranging from the Loremaster Archives to interviews with the developers; some team-members and likers of the project have even discussed new additions to the lore that allude to Uutak concepts as possible shout-outs! Does this mean that the Elder Scrolls Legends: Yneslea is finally on its way? No one can say, for not even Ria Silmane has been able to scry that fate from the Elder Scrolls. Or at the very least, not yet...

So, where should I start learning more about the project?[edit]

If you haven't noticed all the links on this page (or the NavBox at the bottom of it) yet, then the Uutak Mythos landing page is the best place to start with its concise summary of the project's history and themes. After that the Lore (Literature) and Dawn Sings towards the Starry Sea: The Emperor's Guide to Yneslea pages include even more information through the use of in-universe books and novellas categorized by topic and description (allowing readers to quickly find exactly what they're looking for or wanting to read about). Newer pages like the Artifacts and Religion are also being worked on in order to provide greater explanation and content to specific themes, however, so checking back in every now and then might reveal brand new content and information.

And of course, joining the Uutak Mythos Discord can also be extremely beneficial for those interested in learning about the project, as it will allow you to interact with members of the Uutak Team in real-time and ask them questions (or even brainstorm with them) directly.

And how can I use this lore in my own writing?[edit]

The Uutak Team is perfectly fine with other members or projects in the community referencing its material, as long as proper citation is made in regards to the texts and art used. Since the Uutak Mythos is an "open" project (in the sense that anyone can join it whenever they want to) built around teamwork and shared interest, it would be a shame not to let others be able to utilize parts of it in their fanfiction based around the Elder Scrolls franchise. We would like it if you do so respectfully, however; although we enjoy Uutak memes as much as anyone does, anything overtly rude is rather unnecessary and doesn't exactly help the project improve.

Okay then, I think I'm interested in helping the project. How do I do that?[edit]

We're glad you asked! These are general things revolving around the Uutak Mythos as a project that people can attempt to help with whenever they have the time and/or opportunity. Never be afraid to speak up if you have a suggestion, or know something or someone who maybe able to help find a solution to a possible problem.

  • Creation: Having additional writers and artists to help out the project would be beneficial in relation to all of the following points in this section. Joining the project as a creator is as simple as finding a Uutak Team-Member and asking them if you can join or if there are any areas you can help out with. The team can definitely use outside perspectives and ideas in regards to expanding on the races, flora, fauna, magic, cities, and cuisine of the project, and aid with visual mediums for characters and landscapes would be just as helpful.
  • Familiarity: Learning about the UM can seem to be a daunting task, with the wealth of texts to browse and peruse. But being able to understand the concepts presented in it and discuss them at some length helps out a long way with weekly discussions and gauging activities we can do as server together as well. We'd love to be able to do stuff like voice chats, contests, and more in the future, but knowing who would be interested in such things through general activity is a must. So whenever you have the time, please join the Discord and let us know your opinion.
  • Recruitment: The UM is always accepting of newcomers! Do you have friends/coworkers/family/associates/inner demons/extraterrestrials who like the Elder Scrolls and would be interested in joining us here? Don't be afraid to let them know about the project. Having new people popping in at a semi-frequent speed helps the project generate more activity and content, as this brings in more writers and artists to the fray who can jump in on something of their own volition or under someone else's direction. Not to mention that being able to promote and appreciate each other's work is always great and it let's others in the community know we create interesting material.
  • Promotion: This ties into the above, but being able to share stuff from Uutak with others (whether they be from another server, another site, one-on-one, or in person) is always a good way to grab more people like discussed under number two. As always, you should be careful and considerate when doing this (don't spam or become a zealous door to door seller), but if the opportunity comes up, don't be afraid to just mention it a bit or show them some art. Social Media like Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr can also go a long way for a brighter future for the project.
  • Finding Your Niche: The Uutak Mythos lore tries to be as vast, wondrous, odd, and strange as the actual lore of the Elder Scrolls series. But if it's one thing it has, especially in the ongoing reboot, its variety. Do you have a hobby or interest that you want to see talked about in the project? Don't be afraid to mention it! Want to write? Write. Want to draw? Draw. There is something of interest for everyone here in the Mythos, so don't be afraid to exercise your imagination upon approaching it. You might slowly work your way into becoming an expert.

Oh, and one last, what in Oblivion is with the ice cream jokes?[edit]

Ah, hahaha...that. So the funny thing is that according to Michael Kirkbride when IceFireWarden discussed Yneslea with him, it was supposedly referred to as the "Ice Cream Isles" way back when. Whether this was a joke, or just another tidbit of the earlier days of Elder Scrolls lore development that goes to show how kooky the developers were (and still are), no one is entirely sure except for MK himself. In spite of this, IceFireWarden decided to roll with the description and made it a part of Uutak's narrative that the denizens of the location are renowned for inventing and selling ice cream.

Funny how memes often become lore in this community, isn't?

And that's it. Thanks for reading, and have a good day everyone! Hopefully this helped out with understanding the Uutak Mythos project and its role in the Elder Scrolls community.