The Eternal Champion, also known as Talin, was a hero born in 3E 370. He is best known for ending the Imperial Simulacrum by killing the impostor emperor Jagar Tharn in 3E 399 and rescuing the true emperor, Uriel Septim VII, and the general of the Imperial Legion, Warhaft,[nb 1] from a realm of Oblivion where they had been imprisoned for ten years. The hero was then given the title of "Eternal Champion" by the emperor himself. The Champion was also credited with obtaining several Aedric, Daedric, and mortal-made artifacts.
Little is known about the Champion, who was originally just a minor member of the Imperial Court. His father fought in a battle at Borim Valley, and he had a great-aunt and a great-uncle who each lived in separate villages close to the Champion's home village. During his childhood, the Champion worked at the stables of his home village and was taught how to fight by Armsmaster Festil, an elderly warrior. He became friends with Ria Silmane after he was summoned to the Imperial Court to learn under her tutelage the ways of sorcery.
In 3E 389, after Silmane's death at the hands of Tharn, the Champion was thrown in a cell deep within the Imperial Dungeons, left to die. Using what little of her life force remained, Silmane contacted the Champion from between the mortal world and the afterlife and guided him to freedom, tasking him with reassembling the Staff of Chaos and rescuing Uriel VII. Silmane aided the Champion in this task by using her magic to mask the Champion's identity, which successfully concealed the Champion's name from Tharn until seven of the Staff's eight pieces had been recovered. Using Silmane's guidance to find the location of the pieces, the Champion journeyed to Fang Lair, Labyrinthian, the Elden Grove, the Halls of Colossus, the Crystal Tower, the Crypt of Hearts, Murkwood, and Red Mountain on a quest that spanned the course of ten years, before ultimately descending into the depths of the Imperial Palace to face Tharn. After being appointed as the Eternal Champion, the hero took his place at the emperor's side and was tasked with seeing to the needs of the Empire.
The Eternal Champion became somewhat of a culture hero to Imperial Loyalists, many of whom retrace the Champion's steps as part of a pilgrimage.
- In the Floppy Disk releases of Arena, General Warhaft is shown leaving Oblivion with Uriel VII, and thanks the Champion for his service. In CD-ROM releases, only Uriel VII is seen leaving Oblivion, with no mention of Warhaft whatsoever. The general was ultimately patched back some time during or before update 1.06.