A Dunmer assassin attacks his mark

The Dunmer, also known as Dark Elves, are the ash-skinned, typically red-eyed elven peoples of Morrowind. "Dark" is commonly understood as meaning such characteristics as "dark-skinned", "gloomy", "ill-favored by fate" and so on. The Dunmer and their national identity, however, embrace these various connotations with enthusiasm. In the Empire, "Dark Elf" is the common usage, but among their Aldmeri brethren they are called "Dunmer". Their combination of powerful intellects with strong and agile physiques produce superior warriors and sorcerers. On the battlefield, Dunmer are noted for their skill with a balanced integration of the sword, the bow and destruction magic. Dunmer live two to three times as long as humans; with a 200-year-old Dunmer being old and a 300-year-old Dunmer being very, very old. In character, they are grim, aloof, and reserved, as well as distrusting and disdainful of other races.

Dunmer distrust and are treated distrustfully by other races. They are often proud, clannish, ruthless, and cruel, from an outsider's point of view, but greatly value loyalty and family. Despite their powerful skills and strengths, the Dunmer's vengeful nature, age-old conflicts, betrayals, and ill-reputation prevent them from gaining more influence. Those born in their homeland of Morrowind before its devastation were known to be considerably less friendly than those who grew up in the Imperial tradition.

Most Dunmer have red, glowing eyes with skin tones varying from somewhat greenish and the more common gray to the occasional light blue. They are known to be strong, intelligent, and quick, however, are also said to be ill favored by fate. Both male and female Dunmer have a height similar to most of the human races. This means that they are generally taller than their Bosmer cousins and shorter than the Altmer.

Skin of Twilight, Eyes of Sunlight

The ashen skinned elves are typically the same size and shape as the human races, which makes them shorter than their Altmer cousins, but taller than the Bosmer. Their skin tone ranges from green, to varying shades of grey, to light blue, and their red glowing eyes make their appearance exceptionally unique. More often than not, their hair is jet black, but it can range in color from white, to grey, shades of dark brown, and on rare occasions, dark red.

A Curse as a Reminder

Before the dark elves were known as they are today, they were called the Chimer, or People of the North. They were a dissident tribe of Aldmeri who followed their prophet Veloth and worshiped the three 'good' daedra. They traveled to modern day Morrowind, where they warred with the Dwemer and Orcs.

After the Battle of Red Mountain, the 'Living Gods' of the Tribunal betrayed their oath to Azura, which forever cursed them with skin as black as ash, and eyes red with fire. They were from then on known as the Dunmer.

The Dunmer have always had a grim outlook, which may either be due to their unfortunate past, or perhaps a cause for it. They are generally disdainful, and distrusting of other races and those born outside of Morrowind, which they refer to as outlanders. Nationalistic and proud, the Dunmer are also ruthless and cruel, but they are also exceptionally loyal and have strong family values maintained by ancestral worship. They are not quick to trust anyone who claims to be a friend, but once a Dunmer gives someone their loyalty, the Dunmer is a firm friend or ally for life.

Another dark side of Dunmer history is their extensive use of slavery. Mostly Argonian and Khajiit slaves were used, but so were men and mer in rare cases. Their vengeful nature and long history of ill repute prevents them from gaining significant influence with the other nations.

Balanced Warriors

Dunmer are exceptionally well rounded warriors. Notable for their powerful intellect, agile physique, and natural strength, Dunmer are exceptional militants, mercenaries, and warriors.

With the destruction of Vvardenfell and the Argonian invasion, many Dunmer have fled their homeland, trying to make their own way in the world. Their natural martial gifts and resilient heritage makes them strong survivors.

Dunmer Names

Dunmer typically have given names and family names. Those that are the traditional inhabitants of Vvardenfell, known as Ashlanders, also have unique tribe names.

Male Names

Alanil, Aren, Balyn, Boler, Dathus, Evo, Fevris, Gaelion, Hort, Liero, Meryn, Nels, Orval, Ranor, Sarayn, Tavryn, Tendris, Traven, Uthrel, Varon, Vedam

Female Names

Almsi, Amili, Arara, Badala, Balynu, Bronosa, Dalyne, Diren, Ethal, Faras, Gadela, Gelaa, Hlava, Indrasi, Madrana, Nela, Orea, Rila, Sia, Teranya, Urila, Valdrana, Wren

Family Names

Andrano, Arvel, Belas, Dralas, Darethi, Drethen, Falen, Galen, Helvi, Hlaalo, Indaren, Marvel, Moren, Nelas, Omoril, Ralas, Romori, Rothandus, Sarandas, Selaren, Telas, Uveran, Varyon, Veleth

Ashlander Names

Addarari, Asserbassalit, Assunudadnud, Daririnaddunumm, Esatliballit, Gilu, Hairshashishi, Kil, Mirshamammu, Nerendus, Rapli, Serimilk, Timmiririan, Yassabisun, Zabamat

Common Traits

Every character will have traits to choose that are not dependent on their Heritage, relying more on the background or story of the character prior to becoming an adventurer. These are often influenced by their Heritage or their class, but is entirely up to the player.

Attribute Score Increases. When determining your attribute scores, increase one of those scores by 2 and increase a different score by 1, or increase three different scores by 1. Follow this rule regardless of the method you use to determine the scores, such as rolling or point buy.

The “Quick Build” section for your character’s class offers suggestions on which scores to increase. You’re free to follow those suggestions or to ignore them. Whichever scores you decide to increase, none of the scores can be raised above 20.

A classic depiction of a Dunmer would suggest that your Agility, Intelligence, and Strength scores increase by 1.

Alignment. Each ancestry has stereotypes about what they believe, but these are broad strokes that might only apply to a group, rather than to an individual. Each player character’s alignment is entirely under the purview of the player.

Dunmer tend to be neutral with a propensity for chaos. They have rejected many of the traditions that were set before them, while adopting new customs of their own.

Languages. Your character can speak, read, and write Tamrielic (sometimes referred to as Cyrodiilic or Common) and one other language that you and your GM agree is appropriate for the character.

Dunmer Ancestral Traits

Your Dunmer character has certain traits deriving from your Dunmer ancestry.

Age. As all elves, Dunmer are long lived, maturing at the same rate as humans, but possibly living longer than 300 years.

Size. Dark Elves have average builds, and their height is between 5 and 6 feet tall. Your size is Medium.

Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet.

Ancestor Guardian. When you take damage from an attack, you can use your reaction to call forth your ancestors to protect you. Your ancestors appear as incorporeal beings in an unoccupied space within 5 feet of you and within 5 feet of your attacker. The damage dealt by the attack is reduced by 1d6 + your Willpower modifier and the attacker takes an amount of damage equal to the amount rolled. You can use this trait a number of times equal to your proficiency bonus, and you regain all expended uses when you finish a long rest.

Ashlander. You have a natural resistance to fire damage.

Dunmer Cultural Traits

Dunmer are raised with a sense of national identity, providing varied skills in both magic and might.

Dunmer Combat Training. You are proficient in your choice of either the Blade and Marksman weapon type.

Skill Proficiency. You gain proficiency in your choice of the Athletics, Arcana, or Stealth skill.