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Newcomer's Guide Part 1 - Character Creation, Leveling & Addons

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Hello everyone and welcome to part 1 of the Newcomer's guide series!

In this series, I'm going to detail the game mechanics that are important to the PvE aspect. I'm not much of a PvP player, so that will have to be done by someone else :D. Part 1 will focus on character creation, leveling and addons.

Character Creation

As with all MMOs the specialization of your character starts with character creation. Some race/class combinations are better for one role while others can be useless outside of their specific roles.


As you know there are 5 classes in the game at the moment: Dragonknight, Sorcerer, Nightblade, Templar and Warden. Below I'm going to detail each strengths and weaknesses.

  • Dragonknights (DKs) are the best tanks, they have amazing group utility. Currently they are the strongest stamina DDs as well while Magicka-based DK DPS fluctuates as it depends on group setup. Don't even think about making a DK Healer, it's the worst possible class/role combination.
  • Sorcerer - Kind of a jack of all trades due to the varied passives they have but lack in group utility. They are relatively good tanks and healers although DKs, Templars and Wardens outshine them in their respective roles. Currently they are the strongest Magicka-based DDs among the Magicka builds. They are good Stamina-based DDs as well, although slightly weaker than their DK counterparts.
  • Nightblade - Good DD class in both Magicka and Stamina builds; they lack as Tanks and Healers, unfortunately. As DDs they bring some good group utility to the table in the form of Minor Savagery that increases the weapon critical ratings of nearby allies, a strong defensive ultimate in the form of Veil of Blades and a low cost ultimate in the Assassination skill line.
  • Templars are the best Healers in the game. Their skills and passives are the best for healing and support group utility. They can be good Stamina-based DDs. They bring Minor Fracture to the table which decreases the physical resistance of the enemy. They are weaker as Tanks unfortunately, and they are currently the weakest Magicka-based DDs, because they can't sustain their high DPS builds even with group support in PvE.
  • Warden - The new class added in Morrowind DLC, Wardens are excellent Tanks and Healers but they lack in the DD department. Their passives and skills are more geared toward group utility, and currently they are among the weakest DDs in the game's PvE side of things.


There are 10 races in the game at the moment, each race is specialized in different aspects of the game and to maximize the potential of your character you will need to be mindful about your race choice. These races are: Breton, Orc, Redguard, Altmer, Bosmer, Khajiit, Nord, Dunmer, Argonian and Imperial.

  • Bretons have the best Magicka management in the game because of this they are a good choice for Healers and PvP.
  • Orcs are more geared toward Stamina-play, and most used in PvP. They are a relatively good Tank race as well.
  • Redguards have the best Stamina management passives in the game, Stamina builds of Sorcerers, DKs and Templars are best paired with Redguards as they lack instant resource restore skills.
  • Altmer - The Magicka DD race with increased Elemental Damage and Magicka Recovery, best paired with Sorcerer, Nightblade, Templar, Warden and somewhat DK.
  • Bosmers have good Stamina Regeneration and Resistances, mostly used in PvP. In PvE, they don't see much use.
  • Khajiit provides the highest DPS potential in the form of increased Crit Rating. They are best paired with Stamina Nightblades as they have reliable resource restoration. Can be paired with Sorcerer, DK and Templar, if you are confident in your Stamina management.
  • Nord is one of the better tanking classes; they have higher Health Regen and Damage Reduction, although the Damage Reduction is calculated last so its not that high unfortunately.
  • Dunmer are a versatile race with both increased Magicka and Stamina, however they get bonuses to elemental damage, namely they get more fire damage. Best paired with Magicka DK.
  • Argonian - best healer race there is and a good tanking race choice as well. Increased healing received and done are good for both tanking and healing roles.
  • Imperial - Good Tanking and Stamina-based DD race, they get increased Health, Stamina and they restore health with attacks through the red diamond passive.

Having a good race/class combination can increase your performance by up to 10%, so choose your race wisely!


Leveling can be done in 2 ways; one is grind XP, the other is doing content (quests, dungeons etc). I wouldn't recommend grinding for new players as you won't be familiar with core game concepts and miss a lot of skill points. You gain XP by basically doing anything, like exploring, killing, completing quests.

As you level up to 50 you will gain 2 kinds of points on level up: 

  1. Attribute points, which you can spend on your Health, Stamina or Magicka, and ...
  2. Skill points, with which you can unlock and morph new skills.

Attribute points are only gained during level ups and at max you'll have 64 of them. Skill points, on the other hand, are more numerous (you can get over 300 skill points), you gain them by leveling up, gathering Skyshards, killing the group event in public dungeons and some quests also grant skill points (namely the main story line quests, main zone quests and dungeon quests). At level 15, you unlock your second weapon slot, with which you gain a second action bar.

Your skills and skill lines level with you as you gain XP. Active skills need to be on your currently active action bar to gain XP. Same goes for class and weapon skill lines. Armor Skill lines need you to have the armor type equipped to gain XP. Some other skill lines have specific conditions to gain XP - like the Undaunted skill line which gains XP by completing dungeon achievements, Fighters Guild which need you to kill Daedra and Undead, Mages Guild which need you to gather blue Lorebooks. You can find the conditions of the skill lines by hovering over the skill line XP in the skill window.

To speed up your leveling you can buy XP boosts from two sources or buy/craft gear with the training trait. One is the Crown Store from which you can buy XP boosts for real money, the other are crafted XP boosts, bought from other players. XP boosts come in three tiers: 50%, 100% and 150% ones. Player crafted XP boosts are drinks, so they are governed by the Connoisseur passive in Provisioning.

Once you reach level 50 you gain access to a new feature called Champion system. The champion system is the endgame leveling system, you level it just like your usual levels, but it increases much faster in the early stages. When you gain a Champion Rank (CR), you gain a Champion Point (CP). CPs have 3 types: Red, Blue and Green. You gain these points in sequence: first Red, then Green and then Blue... This repeats until you get to the max softcap of 660 CPs (hard-cap is 3600). Each type gives different bonuses: Red gives you Defensive bonuses, Blue enhances your Offense and Green gives you Utility (like Increased Recovery, Reduced Sneak, Block, Sprint Cost etc). To equip the best items you'll need to be CR-160.

The game is very alt-friendly: most of the game features are Account-wide, such as CPs, gear, bank and your collections. When you create an alt, you can allocate all CP after the initial loading screen, but your alt won't be able to gain XP towards CR until it is level 50. With this in mind, if you bank all the CR-160 items, that could be useful for it once it reaches 50. You can deck out your alt in Best-in-Slot gear the moment it reaches a bank.


ESO, as many other MMOs, does support addons which can make your life a lot more easier. To make the installation and maintenance of your mods an easier job, download Minion addon manager. I will list useful addons by sections as we progress through the series, but here is list some useful ones:

  • Skyshards - as the name implies, it shows all Skyshards on your map.
  • Lorebooks - similar to Skyshards addon, this shows all Lorebooks on your map.
  • Destinations - this addon shows all unexplored locations on your map, including markers for quests not yet done, achievements not yet finished.
  • Azurah - a UI addon, you can customize how your UI looks.
  • AUI - another UI addon with a built in minimap.
  • FTC - this third UI addon is my personal favourite.
  • Dustman - good inventory addon, it marks grey and ornate items as Junk. When you talk to a vendor you can sell them by pressing a button.
  • Advanced Filters - this provides a search bar on your inventory and bank for easier access.
  • Inventory Grid View - enables for you to toggle between Grid-View and List-View, when you are viewing list of stuff (Inventory screen, Bank screen etc).
  • Loot Log - shows what others have looted in your group
  • Harven's Improved Skills Window - after you put a point into a skill, this addon will show its possible morphs

This concludes Part 1 of the Newcomer's guide series! Part 2 will be released soon!

Thanks for reading! Good luck and have fun out there! :D

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