This is the playthrough page for my second Skyrim playthrough, for the character Merawen of the Dunmer.
I began this playthrough immediately after the one for the Bosmer Alarrah, on 7/31/2021, just because there were large bits of the game I didn’t do with Alarrah and which I wanted to explore. I wanted Merawen to be my character to explore the Thieves Guild, to have a higher emphasis on using magic, and possibly also to explore the Dark Brotherhood.
I’d originally expected that the posts for Merawen’s run would not be quite as thorough as Alarrah’s, because of not wanting to write about the portions that would be the same. But as it turned out I had plenty of new material to talk about, as well as talking about the differences in how Merawen handled things vs. how Alarrah did.
Another notable difference I did with Merawen is the order in which I played major parts of the game. With Alarrah, I did the main plot first (and assorted major side plots such as the College of Winterhold), then Dawnguard, then Dragonborn.
With Merawen, I followed a track of cycling back and forth between several different things at once: Thieves Guild, College of Winterhold, and Dawnguard, with periodic diversions back to the main plot. Then I ran Dragonborn, and finally, closed out at the end with defeating Alduin and saving the world. I wound up liking this play flow kind of better, just because it seemed like a more satisfying narrative progression in terms of escalation of the stakes.
(However, I also found that cycling back and forth thing hard to keep track of, which informed my choices on later playthroughs.)
As Merawen was a Dunmer, I decided that as with many Dunmer coming to Skyrim, the eruption of Red Mountain early in the Fourth Era had to be critical to her backstory. However, I also decided she was too young to have witnessed it herself. She did, however, witness the impact of that eruption on her family.
While I never did decide for sure if Merawen’s family were Ashlanders, I was pretty sure they were–and that her family was reduced to hardscrabble existence and health issues that more or less wiped them out by the time Merawen came into the picture. She fled to Skyrim on a stolen boat, and probably got nabbed by the Empire not long after she came ashore near Windhelm.
This put her into a position to be very strongly influenced by the treatment of Dunmer she saw going on in Skyrim, particularly in Windhelm. And it informed a lot of the choices I made with her all throughout the game, up to and including her choice of spouse (Jenassa), and how Solstheim struck me very differently when I went there as a Dunmer.
All in all, it made Merawen a very satisfying character to play.
Here are all the posts about Merawen’s playthrough! They’re listed in descending date order, so the newest posts appear first. Also, note the pagination controls after the first five posts. You can page through to see the newer ones.
You can also browse Merawen’s posts via her playthrough category link.
- In Which Merawen Clears Treva’s Watch and Encounters the Ebony Warrior - 10/26/2021In which Merawen clears Treva's Watch, which has driven Stalleo out of his family home; in which she consults with Arngeir about the Greybeards hosting a peace conference; and in which she encounters an Ebony Warrior who wants her to send him to Sovngarde.
- In Which Merawen Finally Returns at Least a Bit to the Main Plot - 10/25/2021In which Merawen explores the Sightless Pit and snipes in passing at Fort Kastav and Faldar's Tooth; in which she battles multiple dragons and vampires; and in which she finally speaks with the Jarl of Whiterun about this wacky dragon-trapping plan for Dragonsreach.
- In Which Merawen Gets Final Restoration Training - 10/24/2021In which Merawen gets her final restoration training at the mage college, and in which she does a great deal of treasure hunting on the side.
- In Which Merawen Gains Final Training in Alteration and Conjuration - 10/23/2021In which Merawen finally makes enough progress in her magical training to achieve the ritual quests for Alteration and Conjuration magic, and in which she fights and defeats her first Legendary Dragon.
- In Which Merawen Does Yet More General Adventuring and Crafting - 10/22/2021In which Merawen does yet more general adventuring and crafting, as she works on the mastery of her magic, and building her power to finally take on Alduin.
Merawen’s screenshot album can be found on the Merawen Screenshots page.