Volendrung is an artifact associated with the Daedric Prince Malacath, and is the first of many artifacts stolen by Sheogorath. He unleashed the artifacts upon Cyrodiil for the purpose of putting an end to his boredom surrounding the lack of chaos in the Three Banners War, and for the fun of keeping his Daedric siblings on their guard. It was added into the game with the release of the Elsweyr chapter. For more information on the backstory behind Volendrung, see the lore article.
A tutorial quest given by Sheogorath is available at the Alliance's Border Keeps, which allows the player to practice with Volendrung's skills with the exception of Sundering Swing. A player may re-enter Cheesemonger's Hollow at any time for further training (see Related Quests section).
The weapon spawns 4-5 times per day in each campaign, and when it spawns, an on-screen notification will appear stating "Volendrung seeks a wielder." If 10 minutes go by and no one has retrieved the hammer, or someone retrieved the hammer before then, an on-screen notification will appear stating "Volendrung is revealed." The hammer's icon will then show on the map and will remain for the duration of the artifact's stay. The hammer may change hands several times, and its map icon will change color to correspond to the faction of the wielder. If it does not have a wielder, the icon will be white. After a period of about 30 minutes, or after it changes hands about 4-5 times, Volendrung will despawn once dropped. This is indicated with a message stating "Volendrung returns to Oblivion." If an enemy drops the hammer and it isn't picked up within 5 minutes, it will respawn back where it was originally retrieved from, if it was not yet time for it to despawn.
The various spawn locations for Volendrung are visually distinctive. Each location has a circle of spikes protruding from the ground and a group of three golden saints guarding the area. If Volendrung is in a specific spawn location, it will be indicated by a rift with a ray of light shining down on the artifact. A total of 23 of these locations can be found throughout Cyrodiil, however, the artifact will only spawn in the locations closest to each faction's Border Keeps; for each faction, 1 of these spawn points is behind their scroll gates, while the other 2 can be found close outside. The weapon is inclined to spawn closer to the Border Keep, with the area behind the scroll gate being the most likely spawn location. The artifact spawn locations found in the inner area of the map were added in PTS patch v5.0.1 to allow for multiple Volendrungs to be up at once for testing purposes, and can be ignored.
When Volendrung is taken, butterflies will briefly swarm around the wielder, who will be clearly recognizable by a bright orange and purple aura. As Sheogorath put a curse on the artifact, in order to continue using the artifact, the wielder must earn Alliance Points, either by killing other players, or attacking enemy-controlled keeps and resources; otherwise, they will be killed by its power. Players have a 3 minute grace period before the hammer needs to be fed. The artifact's hunger level is indicated on the meter located on bottom right of the user interface. Note that repairing keeps or resurrecting other players does not count, nor do alliance points earned by other peaceful means.
If Volendrung is dropped, the same rift it spawned with will appear over its location to indicate that it can be retrieved. A player attempting to pick up Volendrung is vulnerable to crowd control effects for the several seconds required to take the artifact. If a player has crowd control immunity, bashing them will still work regardless. The silencing effect from a Sorcerer's Negate Magic ultimate will also prevent enemies from picking it up. A player will be prevented from picking up Volendrung if they have Bone Goliath Transformation, Overload, or Mend Wounds active.
Volendrung will personally not allow an Emperor to wield it, nor will the wielder be allowed to carry both the hammer and an Elder Scroll at the same time. Volendrung cannot be collected from stealth, and the wielder cannot enter stealth. It is, however, possible to use mounts, transitus shrines, and keep recall stones to travel across the map with the hammer. You are not permitted to teleport to any of the capturable towns, nor allowed to travel to any of the Border Keeps while in possession of the weapon.
Wielding Volendrung replaces your skills with a set of unique artifact skills, increases all stats, and prevents switching to other skill bars. While the wielder will no longer benefit from Battle Spirit, they will be able to use their set bonuses, glyphs, and poisons. Choose your equipment wisely before picking up the hammer, or you will be met with the message "You cannot modify your equipped items while holding an Artifact Weapon."
The Volendrung skill line is available for as long as the weapon is wielded. Skills include:
- The numbers displayed here are the base values for the skills. Magicka/Stamina Cost is based on a character of Level 50 160. Damage values are based on Max Magicka/Stamina 7958, Max Health 8744, and Weapon/Spell Damage 1037. The actual numbers you see in the game may depend on a variety of factors, including skill line rank, your equipped weapons and armor, other skills, enchantments, etc. As such, they should only be used as a comparative reference.
These abilities must be activated manually, for a cost of Ultimate.
|Ruinous Cyclone||Instant||Self||–||8 meters||7 seconds||250 Ultimate|
|Turn into a living cyclone, dealing 10000 Physical Damage every 0.5 seconds for 7 seconds in an 8m radius, while pulling all enemies within 15m closer to you.|
These abilities must be activated manually, for a cost.
|Rourken's Rebuke||Instant||Self||–||8 meters||3.5 seconds||Free|
|Batter foes in an arc in front of you, dealing 7500 Physical Damage, knocking enemies back 4 meters, and stunning them for 3.5 seconds.|
|Malacath's Vengeance||Instant||Enemy||–||12 meters||–||Free|
|Swing Volendrung in a mighty downward blow, dealing 10500 Physical Damage to a single target.|
|Accursed Charge||Instant||Self||–||28 meters||–||Free|
|Spring across the battlefield to smash an enemy, dealing 8000 Physical Damage.|
|Pariah's Resolve||Instant||Self||–||28 meters||20 seconds||Free|
|Channel Volendrung's power to grant Major Brutality, Major Endurance, and Major Expedition to you and nearby group members for 20 seconds, increasing your Weapon Damage and Stamina Recovery by 20% and your Movement Speed by 30%. Activating this ability removes all snares and immobilizations from you.|
|Sundering Swing||Instant||Enemy||–||12 meters||3 seconds||Free|
|Smash Volendrung into a structure, dealing 12000 Physical Damage every 0.8 seconds for 3 seconds.|
Conditional Active Effects
The following effects are unique active effects which require the player to complete certain criteria(?) to activate, and are unique to Volendrung.
|Artifact Ward||Surround yourself with a net of magic negation, gaining a damage shield that absorbs 6451 damage for 6 seconds. Damage shield strength capped at 40% of your Max Health.|
|Consume Lifeforce||Absorbing damage for 60 seconds.|
Innate abilities are active all the time, and do not require the investment of skill points.
|||Volendrung||When wielding Volendrung your Health, Magicka, and Stamina are increased. Killing Enemies will also heal you for 21398 health.|
There are two achievements associated with this artifact:
|Volendrung Wielder||15||Kill someone with Volendrung in Cyrodiil.|
|Volendrung Vanquisher||15||Kill someone who wields Volendrung in Cyrodiil.|
Earning either of the two associated achievements will unlock purchasing the Volendrung Replica furnishing for 2,000,000 Alliance Points at the associated vendor in Cyrodiil. These vendors can be found at the inn at a faction's base. The Dominion's merchant is Athrahgor, the Pact's is Frohilde Snow-Hair, and the Covenant's is Rohzika.
- A Volendrung artifact outfit style is available to purchase in the Crown Store every October (Frostfall), as it coincides with the month that Malacath's Summoning Day falls on.